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The recession, graphically

Written By: - Date published: 12:22 pm, December 23rd, 2008 - 42 comments
Categories: economy, national/act government - Tags:

OK, one last graph for the year.

The latest GDP data isn’t pretty, a 0.4% contraction of the economy in the September quarter. It’s the third quarter of contraction in a row driven by the drought, oil prices, and the credit crunch. The ongoing international financial turmoil means we are likely to continue in recession well into next year. Still waiting on that plan to turn things round. Guess the Nats are too busy approving the killing of more endangered sea lions.

Now, I know the thread off this is going to be one long blame game. So, here’s something to ponder – GDP per capita from 1987 to now.

gdp

all-threeGives some perspective. While the economy is contracting it has been pretty shallow, especially compared to the 90s recessions. We’re still better off on average than in 2006.

But remember, too, that it’s not just the size of the pie, it’s how it is cut up. As we’ve seen, workers get a smaller slice under National’s anti-worker policies.

With a continuing recession, rising unemployment, and an anti-worker government attacking wages, she’s looking like a tough year ahead for ordinary Kiwis.

Not sure that John Key giving himself a hundred dollar a week tax cut is going to help much, either.

[for a fuller explanation of the graph to the left, see this post. Bascially, circle is the size of the economy in 1991, 2000, and 2008, and the red sector is the portion of GDP going to workers]

42 comments on “The recession, graphically ”

  1. Tane 1

    Dude, link’s broken.

  2. ieuan 2

    Geez you started so well with a big picture look at growth (man things must have been grim in 1991-1993) and even added a bit of humour with the ‘seal’ thing but you can’t stop yourself can you?

    ‘An anti-worker government attacking wages’, ‘giving himself a hundred dollar a week tax cut’ if the Nats are so horrible how did they get 45% of the vote?

  3. Daveski 3

    Naturally, no reference to the respective economic conditions faced by the respective governments. Still, nice graph 🙂

    From a Labour perspective, it was a good election to lose.

  4. Chess Player 4

    What is the pie chart showing, exactly? There is no legend.

  5. Tane 5

    It’s workers’ share of the economy, taken from an earlier post.

  6. Santi 6

    A hospital pass from socialist Labour. The toxic duo of Clark & Cullen will be remembered as the undertakers of the NZ economy.

    [lprent: That is a canned line worthy of a troll. Please desist and write something worth reading]

  7. RedLogix 7

    CP:

    The pie graph is based on a well established economic measure known as the “percentage of GDP received as employee renumeration”, ie wages and salary. It’s actually fairly easy to measure and most countries have good records going back many decades. It’s another comparison with Australia we won’t hear from John Key anytime soon either, because theirs is about 10% higher than ours.

  8. the sprout 8

    “Still waiting on that plan to turn things round. Guess the Nats are too busy”

    Well so far they’ve made it easier for people to get fired.

  9. vto 9

    I think my brain has finally sputtered to a halt. Can’t think of anything to say except Merry Christmas and Happy New year!

    [lprent: I know the feeling. Oh well I get a bit of a break before starting the next job in Jan]

  10. Ag 10

    You think the recession will end next year?

    That’s hopeful. I don’t think things will ever be quite the same.

  11. Joshua 11

    Wait till the next recession, caused by peak oil, happens. Then we’ll be worried. The current one will fix itself as soon as all the excess of the past few years has been burned off.

  12. Janet 12

    Love your graphs, Steve. I never realised complex concepts could be captured and described so satisfyingly visually.

  13. Ari 13

    From a Labour perspective, it was a good election to lose.

    And from New Zealand’s perspective, it was a bad election for them to lose. 😛

  14. Tigger 14

    Forget the recession – the sea lion kill quota being raised? How is this the Ministry of Fisheries decision alone? Merry Christmas seals, now die

  15. ieuan: Here’s how National won the election:

    The Nats got 45% of the vote because most people who voted for them didn’t really understand what they were voting for. That will be born out as time passes. I may be wrong, of course, but I don’t think so. We’ve een here before. It’s just the some people were too young to remember and other people never knew in the first place.

    Thanks to Crosby / Textor, many voted anti-smacking law and other trivialities without appreciating the full anti-worker scope and power of National’s policies.

  16. Dean 16

    Steve Withers:

    “Thanks to Crosby / Textor, many voted anti-smacking law and other trivialities without appreciating the full anti-worker scope and power of National’s policies.”

    The only problem with your argument is that Labour also employed a ton of PR and advertising companies. I’m guessing that you also agreed with Trotter;s “courageous corruption” line.

    That, together with assuming that everyone that didn’t vote National was completely and accurately informed what they were voting for, leaves me with little conclusion other than you’re a fool if you believe what you’re typing.

  17. Dean 17

    “Wait till the next recession, caused by peak oil, happens. Then we’ll be worried. The current one will fix itself as soon as all the excess of the past few years has been burned off.”

    Didn’t we have peak oil back when it was over 2 dollars a litre earlier in the year?

    Wasn’t peak oil first predicted as happening back in the 70s?

    If there’s one thing I adore about peak oil predictions it’s how many of them there are.

  18. RedLogix 18

    Dean:

    1. No Peak Oil was never predicted to occur in the 70’s. The vast majority of work done over the decades since Hubert’s first predictions have placed the date range somewhere between about 2005 and 2020.

    2. In the last few years with demand at a peaking at over 85m barrels per day we hit the current production ceilings, and the price skyrocketed alarmingly to $149 per barrel. That was our first real taste of peak oil.

    3. That price, combined with the collapse of the financial industry (and exactly how these two events are linked is a complex and interesting story) has cut demand by over 5% in a matter of months, resulting in an equally dramatic fall in price.

    4. The record now tells us how inelastic the oil production and price is. This inelasticity manifests in high price volatilty around the limits of production.

    5. This volatilty in price has long been predicted as one of the critical signs that we are at Peak Oil.

    Dean, you are repeating variation on an old “boy who cried wolf” theme. A wise village elder might have seen that the first several times the boy ran to him crying wolf, that the boy was just young and frightened of being alone and in charge of the flock for the first time in his life.

    But equally a wise man might have the discernment to see the real terror in the boy’s eyes and the genuine distress in his manner on the occasion, when as inevitably it would one day… that the wolf truly did arrive.

  19. Mark 19

    Somebody mentioned Peak Oil when oil has gone from $147 US to $30 a barrel.

    Classic.

    The current problem is cash deficit that NZ is currently running which is caused by Interest free student loans and Kiwisaver, which are two things National is not going to change.

    WFF is another problem as it’s a tax churn problem that doesn’t do anything but takes from one pocket and gives back to another.

    National aren’t going to change that either.

    Basically Labour has got us to where the US government is currently at where entitlements are causing deficits but neither party will change it. Basically middle class welfare.

    This leaves only one solution which is to grow our way out to generate tax revuenue.

    National believes by giving employers the incentive to hire new staff in small business this may help, I expect next year they will look at making more changes to try and boost productivity growth.

    Without growth NZ is screwed and Labour doesn’t have a clue except increase taxes if they were still in government.

  20. Joshua 20

    Mark, did you not read what RedLogix said about peak oil? Price volatility is widely considered to be a clear indicator that a producation limit has been reached, or is near being reached.

    The only prediction about peak oil in the 1970s was Hubbert’s prediction of US production peaking in 1970… which it did, bang on.

  21. Janet 21

    Sad about the endangered sealions. Says so much about the Nats assumption about the supremacy of money making over the sustainability of the natural world. Sorry but the planet won’t survive unless there is a major change in such attitudes.

  22. RedLogix 22

    Technically the problem is that both the price and demand curves for oil both have a steep, almost vertical region. This is the best link I can readily find:

    Oil Price Curves

    The blue line is the supply versus price curve. The vertical section occurs because once production is close to its maximum then no matter what the price, supply remains almost constant.

    The red line is the demand versus price curve. The vertical section occurs because modern society is dependent on a certain minimum supply of oil to function, and will pay almost any price to obtain it.

    Historically the production maximum on the blue curve has always been potentially higher than the minimum demand on the red one, so price of oil (defined by the intersection of the two curves) has remained on the flat portion of both curves and thus relatively low. Moreover even relatively large changes in demand or production has had little price effect for this reason.

    However when the two curves move, either because the minumum required demand rises, or the production maximum falls (or both), then the intersection of the two curves will lie on the much steeper almost vertical section of either (or both) curves. This means that the price will rise, usually quite dramatically.

    Moreover, quite small changes in production or demand will result in very large changes in price.

    As has happened.

  23. RedLogix 23

    Bugger… swap the words red and blue in my post above. Time for bed.

    Take no pills.

  24. Take no pills

    But that would ruin my entire holiday…

  25. ak 25

    Once again, thanks Red, for yet another brilliantly clear and digestible explanation for us laypeople on a complex but vitally important issue (please, never retire – and don’t get lonely out there – no one argues with you, only because they can’t!)

    Sadly, the history of our revered “free marketeers” makes the realisation of Wissner’s fears only too likely: expect any day now a mad rush on oil futures and the consequent dizzying price fluctuations. Add this to an already volatile global scene and 2009 looks like being a doozy.

    But there could be a bright side. Let’s go totally mental for a second and dream of a genuine New World Order: destabilisation of such intensity and global pervasion as to incite mass mobilisations that insist on massive redistribution – a “bailout” of biblical proportions of the starving half of humanity and our polluted planet.

    It’d need a highly-developed global communications network of course. And a highly charismatic leader of the “free world” (with ties to the third) wouldn’t go amiss. An ascendant third-world socialist state would help. And first-world youth with ambition.

    1968 Paris changed the world. Mayhap in 2008, Greece is the word.

  26. Dean 26

    “1. No Peak Oil was never predicted to occur in the 70’s. The vast majority of work done over the decades since Hubert’s first predictions have placed the date range somewhere between about 2005 and 2020.”

    So Hubert was wrong when he predicted between ’65-’70? But of course everyone else since then has agreed on 05-20? Do you honestly believe that?

    “2. In the last few years with demand at a peaking at over 85m barrels per day we hit the current production ceilings, and the price skyrocketed alarmingly to $149 per barrel. That was our first real taste of peak oil.”

    It had nothing to do with OPEC deciding to fix market prices for a while, did it?

    “5. This volatilty in price has long been predicted as one of the critical signs that we are at Peak Oil.”

    Sorry, but there was volatility in the price of oil in the 70s and 80s.

    You’re going to have to try harder if you want to ignore the very history of what you’re talking about, red.

  27. Joshua 27

    Hubbert predicted 65-70 for USA production. US production peaked in 1970 so Hubbert was right.

    OPEC didn’t fix prices recently, they just simply couldn’t pump anymore oil to bring prices down. OPEC was as worried as anyone about $150 oil, as they know that leads to people looking at things other than oil to power their economies.

    Price volatility in the 1970s and early 80s was politically induced by oil embargoes in 1973 and then the Iranian revolution of 1979. What they showed was that non-OPEC oil (in particular US oil) couldn’t raise production to cover these politically created shortfalls. Arab nations had actually tried to screw the US over in 1967 when the 6 day war happened, but at that point US oil production hadn’t peaked, so they just raised their output.

  28. william 28

    Don’t you think all of this old “workers” and “them” shit is a bit tired?

    Did you not get the message at the election?

    Has it dawned on you that the “workers” are actually capable of saving and sharing in the benefits of production…. or are your “workers” not capable of looking after themselves and need to keep relying on someone else for a handshake.

    I suggest that with the holidays upon us now is an excellent time to reflect on what really makes a country and an economy tick….. In my view it’s when we work together while also taking responsibility for ourselves.

  29. RedLogix 29

    In my view it’s when we work together while also taking responsibility for ourselves.

    A fine sentiment William, but sadly the reality of a world in which the richest 2% of the global population own more than half the total household wealth, and the poorest half own barely 1% of the total wealth, would suggest that the notion of “us and them” is not wholly redundant just yet. Or as Tonto put it, “What do you mean by “we”, white man?”

    Has it dawned on you that the “workers’ are actually capable of saving and sharing in the benefits of production

    Given that a full 50% of New Zealanders have an income of less than $28k pa, I’m wondering quite how much saving you think they will be making, or how wonderfully well their stock portfolio is doing just now.

    or are your “workers’ not capable of looking after themselves and need to keep relying on someone else for a handshake.

    It depends on what you mean by “looking after themselves”. NZ does a reasonable job of feeding, clothing and housing most people. although it’s a barely adequate one in our meaner streets.

    The fact remains though that a significant proportion of New Zealanders, and vast numbers globally, only participate in the prosperity of the modern world in a very marginal fashion, languishing on the lowest socio-economic boundaries with very little opportunity to alter their fate.

  30. Mark 30

    This would be the US where drilling or explotation of oil reserves are banned in most parts of the US.

    The US is not producing more oil since the 70s beacuse the government doesn’t allow it.

    If all bans were removed the US would start increasing the production of oil.

    Thr reason there can be wild fluctations in the price of oil is that the demand and supply curves are nearly vertical, making a small changes in demand or supply can cause large price shifts.

    Peak Oil is a moronic theory like global warming that has been proven wrong every time.

    Last year Peak Oil supporters were claiming oil was gong to go over $200 dollars a barrel and never come down.

  31. Yawn. Union-ese it’s so cringe.

    Anti-worker policies? That’s right, workers are silly dips who cannot function like adults without unions and anti-employer, anti-profit, anti-progress and anti-productivity lefty policies (look I can speak anti-union-ese!).

  32. RedLogix 32

    Mark,

    Yes there are untapped reserves of oil in the USA. They are well-known and have been accounted for in all the projections.

    The idea that there is are many vast fields yet to be discovered is just plain silly. Geologists have a very good idea of where oil is likely to be found; they are not paid not waste their employers money by drilling in places where it is not likely to be found. Over the last 80 odd years they have done exploratory work over most of the planet. All the accessible and politically stable places were checked out long ago, and the rate of discovery for these places correspondingly peaked long ago. Globally, the rate of discovery continues to decline, with few places remaining that could yet yield some giant new discovery.

    Currently the world consumes something like 5 barrels of oil for every 1 new one it is discovering. Essentially we are just running down reserves we discovered decades ago, and not replacing them with new ones.

    And even then, another new massive field like Ghawar in Saudi Arabia, would make surprisingly little difference to the ultimate date of Peak Oil, delaying matters by only a few years at most. In reality all of the new fields being brought into production individually amount to only a few weeks or months of total global oil consumption.

    The reason there can be wild fluctations in the price of oil is that the demand and supply curves are nearly vertical, making a small changes in demand or supply can cause large price shifts

    Now have a think why that might be. What would be the cause of those vertical regions?

    Peak Oil is a moronic theory like global warming that has been proven wrong every time.

    If the amount of oil is finite, you have to reach a production peak eventually. If you are suggesting that Peak Oil is wrong, are you asking us to believe that there is an infinite amount of oil to be found?

  33. Janet 33

    The New Scientist had a special issue on ‘The folly of growth: how to stop the economy killing the planet’ on 18 October 2008. It’s probably on line. I recommend that Mark and the others on this thread still living in the 20th century should read it.

  34. RedLogix 34

    Robert B. Reich is Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton.

    This post from his personal blog absolutely hits the spot.

    Strinkingly this National govt is heading in exactly the opposite direction, straight back into the wilderness of failed “more market, less govt” policies that created the crisis in the US in the first place.

  35. PK 35

    Having worked in oil exploration and production I thought I might correct some of the statements here as several are common misrepresentations.

    There is a long hisory of predictions that we will run out of oil since the early 20th century even. The known oil reserves (as measured in years of consumption at the time of the measurement) actually increased over the 20th century.

    Futhermore, current extraction techniques leave a huge amount of oil in the ground as at the then current prices it wasn’t worth getting out. They don’t “know” where all the oil is. It’s really complicated and expensive to work out exactly where oil is and the best way to get it out of the ground. The estimates of undiscovered oil (obviously rough) range from 60 to 500 years and that is allowing for an annual increase in oil use of 5% p.a.

    However, recently, the rate of discovery actually dropped below the rate of consumption. The received wisdom in this is that via a complex combination of factors including it is now harder to find and extract oil, the price wasn’t worth finding it and political related issues affecting oil exploration.

    There are huge reserves of shale and tar oil but these are quite expensive (and nasty to the environment) to extract.

    What is clear is that oil (and thus energy) will become more expensive and this will affect us as we’ve relied on a cheap energy source. Running out is not the issue (for quite a while yet) because as the price increases it then makes currently unused oil reserves economic. Ditto for alternative energy sources.

    Red – I would have used the term elastic ie if the price varies greatly based on changes in demand or supply and inelastic means high price stability but I get your meaning.

    Considering the price is returning to what was more matching the long term trend this implies recent price movements (upwards and then downwards) are as much speculative and a result of derivatives than due to long term trends or “peak oil”.

    OPEC is struggling to be the price setter on oil as it now produces ~ 40% of the worlds current oil.

    I don’t work for or have any affiliation with any energy companies.

  36. Kerry 36

    Merry Xmas to the lefties……eat crap to the righties!!!!

    Dear John,
    Dont come back from Hawaii!!!!

    Gerry B
    Who ate all the pies who ate all the pies…you fat bastard you fat bastard..Merry xmas!

  37. will 37

    Janet, I think mark got bitten by a yellowjacket and his mind has been poisoned. Peak oil isn’t deniable, even by ideological fools. It’s happening. Period. But these right wingers think the market is the only reality.

    speaking of act supporters, hey madeline, jesus was a trade unionist. I thought you would know that.

    “workers” are going to need any trade union that can help them in this developing recession; else when they are in danger of losing their jobs they are totally screwed. The employers won’t care about their rights unless they are made to.

  38. RedLogix 38

    The known oil reserves (as measured in years of consumption at the time of the measurement) actually increased over the 20th century.

    Well of course. Discoveries of new reserves continue to accumulate, but at a rate less than consumption.

    There is a long hisory of predictions that we will run out of oil since the early 20th century even.

    Complete and utter strawman…no-one has predicted that we will run out of oil anytime soon. Even the most pessimistic estimates of total recoverable oil suggest that we have so far consumed slightly less than half. Plenty of oil remains.

    The real problem is that the half we have consumed was the low hanging high quality fruit that was easy to find and produce. The oil and gas left in the ground is becoming increasingly expensive to extract because it is either remote, in deep water, or lies as you say in complex, awkward structures that are difficult to drill from.

    Almost no-one drills a shallow hole, on dry land that gushes significant oil these days. Almost all big field rely on complex pumping, horizontal drilling and injection techniques. As you must know.

    The estimates of undiscovered oil (obviously rough) range from 60 to 500 years and that is allowing for an annual increase in oil use of 5% p.a.

    Cite please? Because if this is true even your minimum of 60 years of growth at 5% is (60 ^ 1.05 = 73.63) which would imply that in 60 years time oil production would have to be running at (85m barrels per day * 73 = 6.3 billion barrels per day)… or around about 2-3 times the total amount of oil currently known. (The numbers for 500 years of growth at 5% are totally insane, I won’t even go there.) Obviously this is not evenly remotely plausible, so I assume you must mean something else.

  39. RedLogix 39

    speaking of act supporters, hey madeline, jesus was a trade unionist. I thought you would know that.

    And the one of the great moments in the New Testament was the day on which Jesus tossed the money lenders out of the temple.

  40. RedLogix 40

    Correction:

    or around about 2-3 times the total amount of oil currently known.

    Should be: “would use up the total amount of oil currently known in 2-3 years.”

    Optimistically.

  41. John BT 41

    Merry Christmas to you all. (Even Kerry)

  42. Dean: I was describing the group who were mislead ino ving for National. I didn’t make any attempt to describe anyone else or whether or not they were also mislead. Don’t fill in the blanks with your own ill-founded assumptions. They appear to be flawed.

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    This morning Health Minister Andrew Little effectively unveiled Labour's 2023 election manifesto: 5,000 cases a week in Auckland alone: Thousands of people will be infected with Covid-19 every week even with vaccination levels at 90 per cent, and hospitals face being overwhelmed once restrictions are eased and borders opened, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Don't Blame James.
    Emissions Impossible! So, don’t be too hard on poor James Shaw. His pathetic little To-Do list is, indeed, totally inadequate to the crisis. But, you know what? He’ll be lucky to get half of the items ticked-off. There’s just too many entrenched interests – not the least of whom are ...
    4 days ago
  • The “Pulpit of Strewth”
    Barry Soper is one half of one of one of those right-wing husband-and-wife duos in which the Herald seems to specialise. In today’s issue, he has a piece that doesn’t quite reach the heights (or depths) of a Hoskings-style anti-government hostility, but which does provide an interesting example of the ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the epic fails of Kris Faafoi
    Ever since Winston Peters first breathed life into this government in 2018, its own branding has been all about social justice and how we all need to be “kind” to each other. Somehow, Kris Faafoi must have missed the memo. His performance in the immigration portfolio (in particular) has neither ...
    4 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 14 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Mike Treen, Advocate, Unite Union “Please continue your incredible work compiling these news digests. As someone operating in the fields of advocacy for workers and the broader social justice areas it is invaluable to be able to check what is happening in the media relating to the issues I have to deal ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    4 days ago
  • Overconfident Idiots: Why Incompetence Breeds Certainty
    This is a re-post from the Thinking is Power website maintained by Melanie Trecek-King where she regularly writes about many aspects of critical thinking in an effort to provide accessible and engaging critical thinking information to the general public. Please see this overview to find links to other reposts from Thinking is Power. ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Abandoning ambition
    When Labour was first elected to power in 2017, they promised us "[an] ambitious plan to take real action on climate change". Four years and a lot of foot-dragging later, they've finally released that plan. And its not what was promised. Where to begin? Firstly, they've taken the Climate Change ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Young adults worldwide have blunt message for governments: ‘We don’t trust you.’
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Karin Kirk Elizabeth Marks describes herself as “a psychologist who works on difficult problems.” Her past research aimed at helping people cope with challenging health conditions, apt training, it appears, for taking on climate change issues. A few years ago, she altered ...
    5 days ago
  • Making ‘Second Age’ Hobbits Work: Amazon Series Speculation
    Time for a good old-fashioned fandom furore. The Tolkien fandom hasn’t had a proper one of those since the Great Nudity Scandal of October 2020… so it clearly must be time to pontificate from on-high about a television series we still know vanishingly little about. This time the subject ...
    5 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 13 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Lara Greaves, Political scientist, University of Auckland: “I love the NZ Politics Daily emails as they help me to keep on top of current events. It’s incredibly easy to skim through and follow the links. I really appreciate these as it means that I am exposed to a ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • The Data and Statistics Bill and the OIA
    The government introduced a new Data and Statistics Bill today to modernise and replace the 45-year old Statistics Act. Part of the Bill re-enacts the existing confidentiality regime (with one exception), which while a secrecy clause isn't an especially controversial one. Another part is aimed at removing "outdated" (inconvenient) limits ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Graham Adams: The debate over the $55 million media fund erupts again
    RNZ’s Mediawatch and a video clip viewed 42,000 times keep the topic of the Public Interest Journalism Fund fizzing. Graham Adams reports.   A week ago, the NZ Taxpayers’ Union posted a short video clip of the exchange in Parliament between Jacinda Ardern and Judith Collins in which the National ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • Multiple sclerosis: the link with earlier infection just got stronger – new study
    Scott Montgomery, UCL For most of the time since the first description of multiple sclerosis (MS) in 1868, the causes of this disabling disease have remained uncertain. Genes have been identified as important, which is why having other family members with MS is associated with a greater risk of developing ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Hit hard by the pandemic, researchers expect its impacts to linger for years
    Sora Park, University of Canberra; Jennie Scarvell, University of Canberra, and Linda Botterill, University of Canberra   The impacts of COVID-19 on Australian university researchers are likely to have consequences for research productivity and quality for many years to come. According to an online survey of academics at the University ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Covid and free speech
    by Don Franks Some commentators have likened the struggle against Covid 19 to the world war experience. To those of us not alive in those times, that comparison can only be academic. What the anti virus battle reminds me of much more is an industrial strike. In my twenties and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • “Angry Blowhards”
    In today’s Herald, their excellent columnist, Simon Wilson, takes to task those “shouty” people whom he further describes as “angry blowhards”. They are those whose prime reaction to the pandemic is anger – an anger they seamlessly (and perhaps unwittingly) transfer from the virus to the government. The basis for ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • Looking Forward To 2022.
    Future Tense? Okay, so that’s where we are in 2022. Living in a New Zealand where all the usual rules of politics once again apply. And, guess what? Jacinda’s government, once again, isn’t doing very well – not very well at all.LET’S PLAY A GAME. Let’s pretend we’re half-way through ...
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Covid mandates, and the Covid pill
    The cliché about “living with Covid” will not mean life as we’ve known it, Jim. Vaccination is fast becoming a condition of employment, and also a requirement to participate in aspects of social life, such as travel, attending bars, cafes, and concerts etc. These protective measures enjoy a high level ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 12 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Prof Alan Bollard, Professor of Practice at the School of Government, Victoria University of Wellington; Chair of the Infrastructure Commission: “NZ Politics Daily” provides a great public service – a quick and unbiased way to check policy announcements and analysis every morning.” Anyone can sign up to NZPD ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: A submission on the COVID-19 Public Health Response Amendment Bill (No 2)
    I have made a submission on the COVID-19 Public Health Response Amendment Bill (No 2).In preparing it, I looked at the Hansard for the first reading debate, and got name-dropped as someone likely to make a submission. So, of course I did. I focus on a small bit of the ...
    6 days ago
  • Hard News: More tales from the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme
    You may have read last week that two years after the publication of regulations for medicinal cannabis – and three years after the enabling legislation – two local products from a local manufacturer have finally met the minimum quality standards for prescription. You may also be interested to know that ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Real action requires government
    Over the weekend someone pointed me at a journal article on "The Poverty of Theory: Public Problems, Instrument Choice, and the Climate Emergency". Its a US law journal article, so is a) very long; and b) half footnotes (different disciplines have different norms), but the core idea is that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Not doing our bit
    Last month the US and EU announced they would push an agreement to cut methane emissions by 30% (from 2020 levels) by 2030 at the upcoming climate change conference in Glasgow. The good news is that New Zealand is looking at joining it. The bad news is that that won't ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Delta’s Week Of Doom.
    Classic Shot: Are the Prime Minister’s formidable communication skills equal to the task of getting her government’s anti-Covid campaign back on track?IF JACINDA ARDERN thought last week was bad, the week ahead promises to be even worse. Sixty community cases of Covid-19, one of the highest daily totals so far ...
    7 days ago
  • Urgent measures needed to allow the safe re-opening of Auckland schools
    Dr Rachel Webb, Dr Jin Russell, Dr Pip Anderson, Dr Emma Best, Dr Alison Leversha and Dr Subha Rajanaidu* In this blog we describe the range of urgent measures that are needed to facilitate a safe return to schools in Auckland and other regions of the country where there is ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Children live online more than ever – we need better definitions of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ scree...
    Kathryn MacCallum, University of Canterbury and Cheryl Brown, University of Canterbury   The pandemic has fundamentally altered every part of our lives, not least the time we spend on digital devices. For young people in particular, the blurred line between recreational and educational screen time presents new challenges we are ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Putting Aotearoa on the map: New Zealand has changed its name before, why not again?
    Claire Breen, University of Waikato; Alexander Gillespie, University of Waikato; Robert Joseph, University of Waikato, and Valmaine Toki, University of Waikato   Our names are a critical part of our identity. They are a personal and social anchor tying us to our families, our culture, our history and place in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Yes, of course festival organisers will follow the law on vaccination
    On Tuesday 5 October the New Zealand Government announced that proof of COVID-19 vaccination would be a requirement to attend large events this summer.It took a few days for event owners to absorb the information and understand the implications. By the end of the working week, most of the big ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 11 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Jim Hubbard, Cartoonist “NZ Politics daily is a go to for cartoonists, or should be.  Political reporting enmasse like this gives cartoonists and political junkies a smorgasbord to get their teeth into. Essential and I daresay vital reading for those who care about the future of NZ.” Anyone can sign ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #41
    Listing of articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, October 3, 2021 through Sat, October 9, 2021 The following articles sparked above average interest during the week: VFX Artist Reveals how Many Solar Panels are Needed to Power the ENTIRE World, Will you fall ...
    1 week ago
  • The Night of Parmenides: accepted
    A bit of good news on the writing front. My 3900-word short story, The Night of Parmenides, has been accepted by SpecFicNZ for their upcoming Aftermath anthology, to be published in early 2022. This is my first published short story to be explicitly set in my home-town of ...
    1 week ago
  • The Virus, the Politician, and the gang member
    . . . . . References Newshub Nation: Gang leader Harry Tam denies Winston Peters’ claims he helped infected woman breach COVID boundary, sparking Northland lockdown Te Ao News: ‘Apologise!’ Mob leader slams Peters’ Covid, Northland allegations Stuff media: Covid-19 – Search for contact of Northland case ‘extraordinarily frustrating’ CNBC: ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Rapid kits, responses, and openings: watch motivations, or catch something worse with Covid…
    Last week was probably a high point for many armchair “experts”, fresh from their high after some deep inhaling of the various musings and fumings, of an actually very smug, and very insualted John “Things all work for me…” Key, former Prime Minister and FOREX trader, had blitzed the ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Bollocks
    It would appear we have an unwelcome presence in town.Positive wastewater results had been detected in Hamilton and Palmerston North on October 6 and 7. There are 26 cases in hospital, seven of these are in ICU or high dependency units (HDU).One of the people in hospital is in Palmerston ...
    1 week ago
  • World-leading?
    So, the Herald has found someone, as we can see from today’s issue, who is able to explain why we should not claim to have been “world-leading” in our response to the covid epidemic. It seems that we have been kidding ourselves when we celebrated our low total number of ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Why Is Labour So Frightened Of “Mr Stick”?
    Force Multiplier: Why are Ardern and her ministers so loathe to put a bit of stick about? The “emergency” legislation eventually enacted to authorise the measures needed to combat the Covid-19 pandemic failed to confer upon the New Zealand Government the unequivocal authority that subsequent events showed to be so ...
    1 week ago
  • The Need for an Updated Strategic Approach to Covid-19 Control in Aotearoa NZ
    Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Jennifer Summers, Prof Michael Baker* The NZ Government appears to have drifted into an unclear strategic approach to Covid-19 control. In this blog we outline one potential way forward: a regional strategic approach that considers “regional suppression” and “regional elimination”. To maximise the success of this ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Mairon: The Actual Source for the Blasted Name
    Long-time Tolkien geeks – or those bemused enough to run across a certain internet phenomenon – might know that ‘Sauron’ is not actually the real name of the Lord of the Ring. ‘Sauron’ is just an abusive Elvish nickname, meaning ‘the Abhorred.’ Sauron’s actual name, at least originally, ...
    1 week ago
  • Forced Re-entry
    The elimination of Covid strategy is not so much defeated but changing circumstances means that policy has to evolve. Our elimination stance was never sustainable or at least it would not be until the rest of the world also eliminated Covid-19. Elimination of the virus was a strategy we adopted ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Repeal this unjust law
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Preparing for the flood
    The Christchurch City Council has published new "coastal hazards" data, indicating which places are under threat from sea-level rise. And its not good news: Parts of Christchurch and Banks Peninsula are likely to become unhabitable [sic] as the city council figures out how to adapt to sea level ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Virus, Not The Government
    I wonder if Mike Hosking ever reads the paper in which he appears so regularly? If he does, he might have noticed a report in today’s Herald about the problem that could face churches in Auckland if a vaccine passport becomes mandatory for those wishing to attend church services. The ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 8 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Bill Ralston, Media consultant and columnist: “NZ Politics Daily provides an invaluable service for journalists, politicians, businesspeople, decision makers and the public at large by providing an easily accessible, exhaustive, link to every significant political story in the country’s media that day. It’s a gem of a service ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Open letter to Michael Barnett, Julie White, et al
    . . Congratulations,  Mr Barnett, Ms White, and your business colleagues. It appears that we will end up having to “live” (ie, get sick, end up in hospital, perhaps in ICU, intubated on ventilators, and possibly dying as our lungs fail) with covid19. But at least businesses will open up. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Introducing Mr Stick.
    MR STICK: You media types think the people of this country have changed, but you’re wrong. We’re the same tough bastards we’ve always been. Put a bit of stick about – and listen to us cheer!JOSEPHINE MUCH-ADOO: Kia ora, everyone, and welcome to “Introducing”. Today we are very pleased to ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #40, 2021
    "Old" research There's little point in trying to best this excellent article describing the 2021 Nobel Prize in Physics by Ars Technica authors Jennifer Ouelette and John Timmer, each having a gift for concisely on-target, accessible science journalism. Here at New Research we'll punt and quote the The Royal Swedish Academy of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Standing on one leg is a sign of good health – and practising is good for you too
    Dawn Skelton, Glasgow Caledonian University Research shows that people’s ability to stand on one leg is an indicator of health and that getting better at standing on one leg can add to fitness and potentially lifespan. Being able to stand on one leg is linked to increased levels of physical ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: More dishonesty over the CCR
    Last month the Emissions Trading Scheme turned into a farce, when the government flooded the market with credits in a failed and wasteful attempt to Keep Carbon Prices Low. When I asked about the background of this policy Climate Change Minister James Shaw sent me one of the most egregious ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Schrödinger’s Wraith: The Status of the Witch-King of Angmar, 15th-25th March, T.A. 3019.
    My recent re-read of The Lord of the Rings reminded me of one of the vaguer head-scratchers in Tolkien. The status of the Witch-King of Angmar between his death at the Battle of Pelennor Fields and the Destruction of the One Ring ten days later… was he, in the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How rainbow colour maps can distort data and be misleading
    Philip Heron, University of Toronto; Fabio Crameri, University of Oslo, and Grace Shephard, University of Oslo   The choice of colour to represent information in scientific images is a fundamental part of communicating findings. However, a number of colour palettes that are widely used to display critical scientific results are ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Korea’s march to global cultural domination, plus a K-pop playlist
    So far, South Korea’s culture industries seem to be pandemic proof. They’re also winning huge global audiences, and not merely large domestic ones. In recent years, South Korea’s TV series (Squid Game, Descendants of The Sun) and movies ( Parasite, Oldboy, The Handmaiden) have become global hits. However, it has ...
    2 weeks ago
  • In a lockdown, where does work end and parenting begin? Welcome to the brave new world of ‘zigzag...
    Candice Harris, Auckland University of Technology and Jarrod Haar, Auckland University of Technology   All parents work. The difference lies in the breakdown between their paid and unpaid workloads. That equation is influenced by many things, including education, qualifications, age, ethnicity, financial status, number and age of dependants, gendered and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Using Rapid Antigen Tests to Improve COVID-19 Control in Aotearoa NZ
    Figure 1: Rapid Antigen Test kit given out freely from the NHS in the UK Dr Jennifer Summers, Assoc Prof James Ussher, Assoc Prof Nikki Moreland, Dr Leah Grout, Prof Nick Wilson, Prof Michael Baker* Most COVID-19 testing aims to identify infected people. To date, Aotearoa NZ has relied almost ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago

  • New Zealand increases climate aid contribution
    Government commits $1.3 billion over four years to support countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change At least 50 percent of funding will go to the Pacific as it adapts to the impacts of climate change The increase means New Zealand now meets its fair share of global ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Super Māori turnout for Super Saturday
    Māori have put a superb effort into mobilising to get vaccinated over Super Saturday, with thousands rolling up their sleeves to protect themselves, their whānau and communities from COVID-19, Associate Health Minister Peeni Henare says. “It was absolutely outstanding that 21,702 Māori got vaccinated on this one day alone with 10,825 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Language assists Tagata Niue to thrive
    Despite the uncertain times we face with the challenges of COVID-19, our cultural knowledge, values and language remain constant, helping us progress towards goals in life, said  the Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio. This year, the Niuean community in New Zealand decided on the theme, “Kia tupuolaola e ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • New Zealand Ambassador to France announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Caroline Bilkey as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to France and the OECD. “Aotearoa New Zealand and France have a shared history, and enjoy a strong, collaborative partnership. This includes a strong trade and economic relationship, a shared commitment to support ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt welcomes nurses’ pay settlement
    The Government is welcoming news that a new employment agreement for nurses working in public hospitals has been settled. “I am very pleased that the hard work of the Nurses Organisation and District Health Boards has led to a settlement that both can support,” Health Minister Andrew Little said today. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Judge of the High Court appointed
    Māori Land Court Judge Layne Harvey has been appointed a Judge of the High Court, Attorney‑General David Parker announced today. Justice Harvey graduated with an LLB from the University of Auckland in 1992 and commenced employment as a law clerk with Simpson Grierson in Auckland that same year. In 1997 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on plan to reduce waste
    New Zealanders are invited to have their say on proposals for a new waste strategy and options for new waste legislation. “Reducing waste is one of the issues all New Zealanders – especially younger Kiwis - care deeply about,” Environment Minister David Parker said today “New Zealand is one of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Next steps in action plan for indigenous rights kicks off
    Minister for Māori Development Willie Jackson has today meet with more than 30 national Māori organisations in an online hui, kicking off the process to develop a plan for New Zealand to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (the Declaration). The previous National Government signed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Iwi-led housing solutions build homes for the future
    Whai Kāinga, Whai Oranga will open on 20 October, to receive applications for investment through Te Tūāpapa Kura Kāinga – Ministry of Housing and Urban Development and Te Puni Kōkiri The $730m fund combines investment from Budget 2021 ($380m) and the Māori Infrastructure Fund ($350m) - the largest investment seen ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • E whakarite ana Te Kāwanatanga i ngā tūāpapa mō twhakamaumahara ki Te Petihana Reo Māori ka t...
    I te rā nei, i pānuihia e te Minita mō Manatū Taonga, ko Carmel Sepuloni, rāua ko te Minita Whanaketanga Māori, ko Willie Jackson, ā tērā tau, ka whakanuia rawatia te 50 o ngā tau mai i te whakatakotoranga o te petihana mō te Reo Māori me te huanga mai ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • E whakarite ana Te Kāwanatanga i ngā tūāpapa mō tewhakamaumahara ki Te Petihana Reo Māori ka t...
    I te rā nei, i pānuihia e te Minita mō Manatū Taonga, ko Carmel Sepuloni, rāua ko te Minita Whanaketanga Māori, ko Willie Jackson, ā tērā tau, ka whakanuia rawatia te 50 o ngā tau mai i te whakatakotoranga o te petihana mō te Reo Māori me te huanga mai ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government green lights rapid antigen testing
    Some of the country’s largest businesses have put in an order for 300,000 approved rapid antigen tests for their workforce, after working at pace with the Government on a new scheme unveiled by Associate Minister of Health and Research, Science and Innovation Ayesha Verrall. A coalition of around 25 businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government lays foundations as Māori Language Petition commemorations take shape for 2022
    Taiaha hā! Taiaha hā! - Te kairangi o te reo hoki mai ki taku tikanga, ki taku taumata, ki taku reo, ki taku ao. He reo whai tikanga, he reo whai mana, he reo whai tangata koe. Ki te whāngaihia te reo Māori he ao tēnā, ki te kore he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major contract awarded to power NZ Battery investigation
    A consortium of specialist firms has been awarded a major contract to advance the New Zealand Battery Project’s feasibility investigation into a pumped hydro storage scheme at Lake Onslow, the Minister of Energy and Resources Megan Woods has announced. “This contract represents a major milestone as it begins the targeted ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Additional Funding for Foodbanks and Social Agencies
    The Government has approved $13.55m from the Covid Response and Recovery Fund to support foodbanks and social sector agencies, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni has announced. “Foodbanks and social agencies across Auckland are doing a great job supporting their communities and the Government is today providing them with more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Generating a new generation of guardians
    The Government is supporting a Whakatōhea-led project undertaking landscape scale restoration in forests and around vulnerable rivers within the Eastern Bay of Plenty, Minister of Conservation Kiri Allan says. “The Whakatōhea Tiaki Taiao project will employ four people to undertake pest and weed control, ecosystem restoration and monitoring over three ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Parts of Waikato, Northland staying at Alert Level 3
    The parts of Waikato that have been in Alert Level 3 and Northland will remain in Alert Level 3 for a few more days, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Auckland remains at Alert Level 3, Step 1. “Based on the latest public health information, ministers have decided that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New courthouses for Tauranga and Whanganui
    The Government is moving ahead with new courthouses in Tauranga and Whanganui, which the Justice Minister says provide an opportunity to redesign court facilities that help put victims at the heart of the justice system. “These courthouses are part of the 10-year infrastructure investment plan to restore and modernise Ministry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech on the launch of the consultation on the development of the Emissions Reduction Plan
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Ngā mihi o te ata. Earlier this month Save the Children wrote to me with their most up to date analysis on the impact of climate change. What they said was that children born in Aotearoa today will experience up to five times as many heatwaves and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Opportunity to shape NZ’s first Emissions Reduction Plan
    The Government is inviting New Zealanders to inform the country’s first Emissions Reduction Plan with the release of a consultation document containing a range of policy ideas to decrease the country’s emissions, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Climate Change Minister James Shaw announced today. The Emissions Reduction Plan will set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Convention on Biological Diversity COP 15, Virtual High-Level Segment
    Kia ora koutou katoa. I want to thank China for hosting this critically important Conference of the Parties. We are all here for the same reason. Biodiversity loss, and the ongoing degradation of nature, are accelerating at an unprecedented rate. These losses are causing irreparable harm to our planet’s ability ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government books show resilient and strong economy
    The end of year audited Crown accounts released today show the Government’s health led approach to the COVID-19 pandemic has protected New Zealand’s economy. “On almost every indicator the accounts show that the New Zealand economy has performed better than forecast, even as recently as the Budget in May. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • ​​​​​​​Health system is ready for assisted-dying law
    The health system is ready for the implementation of the End of Life Choice Act when it takes effect next month, making assisted dying legal in New Zealand, Health Minister Andrew Little said today. The law received 65.1 per cent support in a public referendum held alongside last year’s general ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Taking a lead in threat to curious kea
    Reducing lead poisoning of kea, the world’s only alpine parrot and one-time New Zealand bird of the year winner, is the goal of a two year project being backed by the Government’s Jobs for Nature programme, Minister of Conservation Kiri Allan says.  “Lead poisoning is a serious threat to this ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government provides certainty to working holiday and seasonal visa holders and employers for summer
    The Government will extend Working Holiday visas and Supplementary Seasonal Employment (SSE) work visas for six months to provide more certainty to employers and visa holders over the coming summer period, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi has announced. “This offers employers and visa holders the certainty they’ve been asking for going ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Lower card fees good for businesses, consumers
    The Bill to help lower the cost of the fees retailers get charged for offering contactless and debit payment options is another step closer to becoming law, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Dr David Clark said today. “COVID-19 has changed the way we spend our money, with online and contactless ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Mandatory vaccination for two workforces
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