They got bailed out and we got sold out

Written By: - Date published: 12:05 pm, September 15th, 2018 - 56 comments
Categories: business, capitalism, class war, Economy, uk politics - Tags:

This column from Ros Wynne Jones in the Daily Mirror deserves linking to and repeating.  It is that damn good.  It is about the response in the UK to the global financial crisis and details how they missed a chance to put through proper reform of the banking system.

Her level of contempt clearly maxed out when she wrote this.  I can imagine her fingers pounding angrily and quickly on the keyboards of her laptop as she sought to capture the intense feelings the subject of her article generated.

She said this:

Ten years after the banking crisis and these people show no remorse – the Lehman’s cocktail party-goers, the Bob Diamonds and the Fred the Shreds.

Today, Diamond – the former Barclays boss and banking’s chief buccaneer until the banks blew up like a game of Buckaroo – marked the anniversary by feeling sorry for himself.

“The culture of banking now,” sighed the man forced to resign at the height of the Libor-rigging scandal in 2012, “is that if anyone makes a mistake they get fined.”

The collapse of Lehman Brothers on September 15, 2008, unleashed the worst global downturn since the Great Depression. But apparently banks have done enough penance.

Diamond says it’s time to let “banks be banks” again.

Can you imagine the level of venom dripping from her as she typed and processed that thought?

She then said:

His words should still stick in the throat of almost every single person in the country – 99.9% of us – who have lost out because of bankers being bankers.

Then came the kicker.  The reality of what has changed since the GFC for the banks and for the rest of us.

This week, the campaign 10 Years On introduced website whatamiowed.org, which tells you exactly how much you personally lost in the financial crisis.

The campaign points out that since 2010, the Government has slashed almost £50billion from public services – and over £30bn more from social welfare.

It adds: “By comparison, the Big Four UK banks have paid out over £50bn in bonuses.”

The website whatamiowed.org has a very basic back engine that attempts to estimate what UK citizens have lost because of the need to bail out the banking system.  The backers of the site, 10 years on, are “working with a network of organisations to Change Finance: demanding a sustainable financial system where the banking sector first and foremost serves the best interests of people and the planet.”

It makes you wonder what the result would be in Aotearoa New Zealand if a similar calculation was made.  Our results were different, a number of third tier lenders went broke and took out millions of dollars from mainly retirees’ asset bases.  There was however the South Canterbury Finance payout where for reasons I still do not understand SCF was kept in the Bank Guarantee scheme, played fast and loose with loans and then was bailed out by the Government having to reward some pretty dodgy behaviour.

And there was the sell off of the power companies shares.  Last time I checked we had lost nearly as much as we had gained and the income was not coming our way any time soon.  Presumably by now we are in the red.

Fundamental reform of the world’s banking system is overdue.  But it seems clear that we have missed out on the chance to do so.

56 comments on “They got bailed out and we got sold out ”

  1. alwyn 1

    “where for reasons I still do not understand”
    I suggest you should start your enquiry by asking Michael Cullen why he really thought he had to include SCF in the scheme.
    He must have had a bit better reason than he admits in this story.
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=12124686
    The problem with SCF was putting them into the scheme in the first place. Once they were in there was no way to exclude them at a later date without causing their collapse.
    Why did Cullen allow them in at the start?

    • dV 1.1

      May be so Alwyn, BUT who allowed the extension of the scheme to SCF in 2010/11?

      Lets see Cullen, NO
      Ha Key and English!!

    • RedLogix 1.2

      I recall an interview with Kim Hill at the time; Cullen was very aware of the potential problems and was quite reluctant to extend the scheme too widely.

      I think he believed that including the these tertiary lenders was the lessor of the evils. Especially given all the media drama at the time.

      • Ad 1.2.1

        Exactly.
        Saving any financial institution generated moral hazard.
        SCF was that hazard.

        NZ Governments of both stripes have bailed out far bigger institutions in the past.

        • Muttonbird 1.2.1.1

          Bigger than $1Billion to a bunch of farmers? To an institution which in no way was crucial to the overall economy? Nor an international flagship with a reputation to defend.

          The leeches who got the taxpayer funds from low income families on the breadline then used the the proceeds for dairy intensification and a poisoning of the environment.

          Apart from Erebus, Cave Creek, and Pike River, that payout by Bingles was the darkest day in NZ’s history.

          Yet you two shrug.

          • Ad 1.2.1.1.1

            The taxpayer has bailed out the BNZ, Air New Zealand, Kiwibank through recapitalisation, developers of leaky homes, bunches of polytechs, and bunches of other entities in its history.

            In this case, it also saved Timaru and much of Canterbury from going down. You can compare that to the Wahine or the Tangiwai if you like.

            There’s always line calls in public subsidy that people have 20-20 hindsight over. SCF was one of them.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.3

      I suggest you should start your enquiry by asking Michael Cullen why he really thought he had to include SCF in the scheme.

      No, we have to ask Bill English and National. They’re the ones that kept SCF in the scheme despite knowing that they’d broken all the rules.

      Once they were in there was no way to exclude them at a later date without causing their collapse.

      Yes there was. They broke the rules of the scheme at which point they should have been removed. Treasury even advised it. Them collapsing isn’t anybody else’s problem.

    • KJT 1.4

      It wasn’t Cullen. It was National.

      Funny some insiders were telling me “Invest in SCF, you can’t lose”.

      Some people should have gone to jail over SCF, not Hubbard either.
      “Pump and dump” and insider trading with a government guaranteed profit.

      But. “New Zealand is not corrupt”.

    • mickysavage 1.5

      There were plenty of occasions where SCF should have been excluded from the scheme. Read any of a multitude of posts on this website for the how and why.

      Like this one:

      https://thestandard.org.nz/key-scf-excuses-fall-flat/

      • alwyn 1.5.1

        The moment that the Government announced that SCF would NOT have remained in the scheme was the day it would have collapsed as everyone tried to withdraw their money.
        Keeping them in the scheme was, perhaps wishfully, trying to keep them solvent until they could get back on a level keel. Didn’t work and the prospect was rendered impossible by the founder’s business practices.

        Of course a lot of people took advantage of it. People do that sort of thing. Have you never been asked by a client about the ways of minimising their income tax?
        Look at all the MPs who belong to KiwiSaver schemes. When it started Cullen was at pains to try and argue that it wasn’t meant for people at their income levels. None of them took any notice except Joyce who never took advantage of the MP subsidy on Super. The only one I am aware of. It helped that he was pretty rich. The only problem the others are going to have is if they remain locked into the schemes when Robertson, as he is hinting of doing, starts specifying where they should be forced to invest.

        • KJT 1.5.1.1

          “Of course a lot of people took advantage of it. People do that sort of thing. Have you”..
          No. I refused as it was blatantly unethical. In many countries it is called “insider trading” and it is illegal.

          • alwyn 1.5.1.1.1

            There was no element of insider trading about it.
            The details of the scheme were widely published and there was nothing “secret” about it.
            Insider trading is only ever illegal if it is available to and known about by, a small group of people who are able to get this information only from someone who actually has access to what must be only available to “insiders”.
            The relevance of that scheme to SCF was widely known from the moment that they announced the companies on the list.

            I invested in KiwisSaver when it started even though I was retired, over 60 and was merely switching money from other investments. I had a friend who said she wasn’t going to go into the scheme because she thought it would be “unethical” and that it wasn’t meant for people like her.
            I told her that I thought the scheme itself was stupid and was merely an election bribe. It would have, as I would say has been proved, that it would have no genuine effect on the savings rates in New Zealand. Nevertheless it would be abject stupidity on her part not to join. Luckily for her, her Accountant agreed with my opinion and she did join. If someone is offering you money for jam then, in the absence of a David Clark desired “sugar tax” you are stupid not to indulge.

            • KJT 1.5.1.1.1.1

              Struck a nerve, did I.

              Nothing unethical about SCF being pumped up with insider investors, knowing that it was going to be bailed out including interest, long before any of the public knew?

              Yeah right!

              • In Vino

                I think alwyn is losing this one, and will therefore retreat to another thread.
                But I may be wrong..

                • alwyn

                  I think you are too stupid to actually be able to contribute to, or even understand this thread at all, but hey, half the population, like you, have below average IQ levels.

                  For KJT.
                  The public knew, at the time the guarantee list was published, and which included SCF that it would have its borrowing guaranteed, and that people who had loaned it money would be reimbursed.
                  The public, if they understood and read what the guarantee was, would have known just as much as the people who lent them money knew.
                  What part of the word guarantee don’t you understand?

                  Would I have included them in the original list? NO.
                  Once they were in would I have paid out on the guarantee? YES.
                  Anything else and the word of any New Zealand Government would be worthless.

                  • KJT

                    Is failure to read and comprehend a normal right wing trait?

                    Explains a lot.

                    • In Vino

                      alwyn is always punctilious about details that suit him, but does not appear to know when he is on a losing wicket. Well done KJT

                  • the other pat

                    I think you are too stupid to actually be able to contribute to, or even understand this thread at all, but hey, half the population, like you, have below average IQ levels…..wtf?……careful taking that step off your high horse…..seems a common trait with some of you here…..some DO NOT understand things straight away…..an old saying is that if your communication is is not understood then its you that have not communicated effectively.

            • Nic the NZer 1.5.1.1.1.2

              Kiwisaver can’t have any effect on NZ’s savings rate. That falls into the realms of the impossible thing (which didn’t happen).

              • alwyn

                KiwiSaver didn’t increase New Zealand Savings rate.
                True but that wasn’t how Sir Michael Cullen sold the proposal.

                • KJT

                  As usual a right winger takes a statistic which on the face of it seems correct, but if you drill down, you find they are basically, lying.

                  NZ savings rates were dropping, as people with no money tend not to save.

                  True, savings rates havn’t changed much since Kiwi saver stsrted. Saying Kiwi saver made no difference, which is what Alwyn is trying to say, is not accurate. Savings rate of decrease did change.

                  Much as I am against the privatisation of State super which is the real aim of Kiwisaver. Finance don’t get to cream off the top, of PAYGO, State provision.

                • Nic the NZer

                  Its not a matter of didn’t, its a matter of can’t.

                  If you net save your income then your expenditure falls by you additional saving. This then means someone else’s income falls by the amount you save. This chain of saving continues until somebody responds by reducing their saving, so in aggregate no net saving occurs.

                  The implications of this are as follows,
                  Including the public and private sectors together an increase in NZ’s savings rate is the same as an increase in the current account balance, and in reverse.
                  Looking at just the NZ private sector (because this is the sector which can go broke) the net savings rate is determined mostly by the inverse of the public net savings rate (plus current account as above). So while the government is running a surplus it is draining the potential for the private sector to net save, and in reverse for a deficit.

  2. roy cartland 2

    Here’s the link again (I got a 404):

    https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/banking-crisis-ten-years-on-13239615

    [Thanks now fixed – MS]

    • Dennis Frank 2.1

      “10 Years On, a social justice collaboration involving Positive Money, Unite the Union, the Robin Hood Tax campaign, Stamp Out Poverty, Christian Aid, War on Want, Jubilee Debt campaign and others, are calling for an increased stamp duty on shares – and an end to “too big to fail” banking. It calls for a transition plan for the end of fossil fuels, break-up of the mega-banks starting with RBS, and measures to tackle household debt and branch closures.”

      Good so see that. Reminds us that the left, once upon a time, organised themselves into politically-effective networks, and changed the world for the better. I appreciate that this example in the UK signals that the time for being impotent complainers is over, and armchair critics ought to get involved in support.

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    MS: “Fundamental reform of the world’s banking system is overdue. But it seems clear that we have missed out on the chance to do so.”

    We actually never had the option you thought we had. Reform of the system is an option only available to those who own and operate it. Everyone else has this much leverage: zero. Since a decade has passed since QE saved the system, and since the consensus that it remains an effective stratefy is only slowly dissipating, it will take another gfc to trigger reform. We’re waiting for that.

  4. joe90 4

    Your Mirror link is jiggered.

    https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/banking-crisis-ten-years-on-13239615

    [Thanks had a stray apostrophe at the end. Now fixed – MS]

  5. Bill 5

    Yeah Micky, liberal politicians played ball and threw us all under the bus to keep the banking system going – and then made it bigger than it ever was.

    Who gutted banking regulations again? Oh, that’s right, was a bi-partisan project…whether we’re talking the US, here or the UK.

    You want the banking system brought back into line? You want the interests of society put before bank interests? Better vote for a party with social democratic leanings then.

    Just one small problem on that front as far as New Zealand is concerned – NZ Labour, National and the Greens are wedded to liberal economic orthodoxy. The frightening bit is, they didn’t need to be “bought” as per the charge so often made in relation to the US. They go along on as willing dumb fucks. It’s called “ideological capture”, and unlike the UK or the US, the political party that might lead a government that espoused social democratic policies is in total fucking lock down and not going to be shifting its ground anytime soon, if at all

    Here’s Dylan Ratigan from 2011. The basic thrust of his message translates to NZ politics, NZ politicians, their shared economic ideology and the shite state of affairs we’re in.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIcqb9hHQ3E

  6. Tuppence Shrewsbury 6

    The real villains are the governments who believed any bank was “too big to fail” and therefore needed welfare.

    If banking isn’t the most stunning indictment of the notion of welfare in its modern form, I don’t know what will convince people it doesn’t help, nurture or change behaviour.

    They should have all collapsed, we would have had a once in 90 years type depression then all would have been ok for 40-50 years, until the cycle started properly again. Not this 10 yearly pump and dump short term economy led by public service spending.

    • BM 6.1

      The real villains are the politicians that were “convinced” any bank was “too big to fail” and therefore needed welfare.

      • corodale 6.1.1

        Should politicians take that as a death threat?

        • BM 6.1.1.1

          I wouldn’t say death threat, but politicians have a far too much leeway and really need to be reign in.

          Example, 3 billion dollars for Peters to buy a seat for NZ First, it’s fucking criminal.

          • corodale 6.1.1.1.1

            Yeah, you single out the only MP I know of who has publicly talked of Social Credit (Peoples Public Credit he calls it). With his political experience, he is like a Death Knight. Worms like you will gain no substance on his flesh. In the financial crash, he will rise and become legendary.

      • Nic the NZer 6.1.2

        Even if some financial institution was too big to allow it to fail politicians could still have taken the trouble to sack, replace and prosecute those responsible. That was always the real political malfeasance here.

      • KJT 6.1.3

        The real villains were the capitalists who bought the media and politicians. fixed it for you.

    • KJT 6.2

      Capitalism needed to be bailed out by “socialism” again!

      Ironic.

      • Tuppence Shrewsbury 6.2.1

        Bullshit. Capitalism would have been stronger without the socialist interference. Capitalism survives.

        Politicians saw a chance to exert more political control over the economy for “societies” benefit. So socialism. And look where we are now.

        Don’t get too misty eyed about socialism. You’re too old to see how it will ruin the next generation

        • KJT 6.2.1.1

          I can see why you have a problem with socialism. Your education by the “socialist State obviously failed you. Or were you one of those hopeless cases who know better than your Teachers?

          If you are so keen on capitalism go live in a pure capitalist State. Someone with your level of comprehension, would be living in a cardboard box on the street. Haiti, Honduras, Somalia, Russia, Appalachia, spring to mind.

          • Tuppence Shrewsbury 6.2.1.1.1

            The old “give thanks to your socialist education system”

            The one that’s failing the poor kids miserably no matter how much money is chucked at it.

            The one the capitalist kids do better at striving for their own success.

            I give thanks I only came out a little bit behind the private school kids because of my own ambition.

            • KJT 6.2.1.1.1.1

              I thought you were on the benefit. self hating wannabees seem to be the most rabid right wingers.

              • Tuppence Shrewsbury

                How quickly the defenders of socialism cave and start attacking the messenger!

                • KJT

                  Because you don’t have any sensible arguments to counter. just mindless slogans.

                  • Tuppence Shrewsbury

                    what mindless slogans? Those statements were assertions of fact. The education system is failing poor kids. Ambitious, self motivated achievers are doing very well despite the socialists nature of our public education system and it’s main practitioners, teachers and principles.

            • KJT 6.2.1.1.1.2

              Half starved, cold and stressed children don’t do well, no matter how good the education system.

              doing noticeably worse, since right wingers fucked with our education system, of course.

              • Tuppence Shrewsbury

                Doing worse ever since the teachers cared more about there union protecting their patch than the education of the children.

        • the other pat 6.2.1.2

          capitalism survives because we SOCIALISED all its fucking debts!!

  7. corodale 7

    If the banks need money, why doesn’t the Govt fund the banks by buying a share of the banks?

    Would truly be that easy, except the rating agencies and international banks would slash the value of our dollar and buy all our assets at a bargain prices.

    The banking cartel is truly insolvent. QE is pure corruption at the highest level. By law, yes law, a share of the banking cabal must be nationalised. Those responsible for QE belong in jail.

    • Ad 7.1

      Our government does not need to buy a share in Australian-dominated banks.

      We have Kiwibank. Founded and formed by the revious Labour government.

      When it needed recapitalising, ACC and NZSuper bought a major shareholding.

      If you want to break the cartel of Australian banks, shift your banking to Kiwibank.

      • mike 7.1.1

        there would be a bank run if deposit holders pull there money from these banks
        while i totally agree with you having pulled all my money from the anz i think its impossible on a mass scale because the authorities will close the bank doors. its a case of do it as an individual and well ahead of the train wreak.

        • Ad 7.1.1.1

          I’ll take it as a sign of actual confidence in the strength of Kiwibank when the government shifts its own banking overt its own bank.

          Meanwhile, their market share is small but growing, which is good enough for me.

    • KJT 7.2

      Just need to run state bank, like north Dakota.

      Small local competing private banks and co ops, under state bank are fine

      • mike 7.2.1

        credit unions are local and provide low cost basic banking there not flash and not having branches everywhere doesn’t matter with apps and online banking

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    3 days ago
  • Willis tells us before dawn about her travel plans and – early this afternoon – she reports on h...
    Buzz from the Beehive Finance Minister Nicola Willis – and press secretary Nick Venter, too, we may suppose – were up and about before sparrow’s fart. Her bags would have been packed and her passport checked. We report this on the strength of an email from Venter which landed in ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    3 days ago
  • ROB MacCULLOCH: Grant Robertson’s new job sends an awful message to students about meritocracy in ...
      The appointment of Grant Robertson as Vice-Chancellor of Otago University has raised hackles – and questions – among academics.  Robertson’s credentials for the job is one issue.  The appointment process is another.  University of Auckland economics professor Rob MacCulloch has posted these three articles in the past few days ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • Govt's Budget 'just like a household,' says Willis
    TL;DR: Flying in the face of comments from a ratings agency and a mountain of demand for a new long-term sovereign bond issued yesterday, Finance Minister Nicola Willis has again characterised the Government’s finances as too fragile to borrow in its own right to solve Aotearoa-NZ’s infrastructure deficits. She also ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • How oil sands undermine Canada’s climate goals
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections Now in his ninth year as prime minister, Justin Trudeau has sought to position Canada as a global climate leader, touting one of the world’s highest taxes on carbon pollution, clean fuel regulations, and clean technology tax credits. Yet Canada’s per-person climate pollution remains stubbornly ...
    3 days ago
  • Untold back-stories: the little things media don't tell us but which are nevertheless pertinent
    ..Thanks for reading Frankly Speaking ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.In an article entitled "School donations continue to yield millions of dollars for wealthier schools" on RNZ's website on 19 February, Data journalist Farah Hancock reported on the fees ("donations") that (some) schools were ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Untold back-stories: the little things media don't tell us but which are nevertheless pertinent
    ..Thanks for reading Frankly Speaking ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.In an article entitled "School donations continue to yield millions of dollars for wealthier schools" on RNZ's website on 19 February, Data journalist Farah Hancock reported on the fees ("donations") that (some) schools were ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Efeso Collins – Gone Too Soon.
    My wife’s breathing was heavy beside me as I woke this morning, still dark. Yesterday, and it’s awful news, came crashing into my head and I lay there quietly crying.Thinking of Efeso’s family and loved ones. Of so many people who knew him and were devastated by the shocking news. ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Efeso Collins spoke in Parliament only yesterday on bill which will regulate social workers (and vot...
    Buzz from the Beehive Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and other party leaders have been paying tribute to Green MP Fa’anānā Efeso Collins, who collapsed and died during a ChildFund charity run in central Auckland this morning, . The event, near Britomart, was to support local communities in the Pacific. Collins, ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    4 days ago
  • This is corrupt
    Earlier in the month, a panel of "independent" experts in Wellington produced recommendations for the future of housing in the city, and they were a bit shit, opposing intensification and protecting the property values of existing homeowners. Its since emerged that they engaged in some pretty motivated reasoning on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Efeso Collins
    God, life can be cruel sometimes can’t it?If only everyone was like him. He was so very warm, so very generous, so very considerate, so very decent. Plenty of people have those qualities but I can think of hardly anyone I've met who had them as richly as he did.Let me ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER:  Is applying “tough love” to a “fragile” nation the right answer?
      The Question Christopher Luxon Needs To Ask –  And Answer:  How was it possible for a nation of barely three million citizens to create and maintain an infrastructure that functioned, schools and universities that turned out well-educated and enterprising citizens, a health system that kept its people healthy, and a ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    4 days ago
  • DON BRASH: Is an independent foreign policy really feasible?
    Don Brash writes – A week or so ago, Helen Clark and I argued that New Zealand would be nuts to abandon the independent foreign policy which has been a characteristic of New Zealand life for most of the last 40 years, a policy which has seen us ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    4 days ago
  • YVONNE VAN DONGEN: So proud
    Ratepayers might well ask why they are subsidising people who peddle the lie that it is possible to be born in the wrong body and people can change sex. The preponderance of events advertising as ‘queer’ is a gender ideology red flag. Yvonne Van Dongen writes –  It ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    4 days ago
  • S&P slams new Govt's council finance vacuum
    Wellington Water workers attempt to resolve a burst water main. Councils are facing continuing uncertainty over how to pay to repair and expand infrastructure. The Wellington Regional Council was one of those downgraded. File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s has downgraded the outlooks for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Resigns.
    Yesterday the man that I admire most in NZ politics called time.Around the middle of yesterday news began to filter out. People were posting unconfirmed reports that Grant Robertson was taking a new role as Vice-Chancellor at Otago Uni. Within an hour it became clear that he was indeed retiring ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Auckland’s City Rail Link will fail immediately… in the best possible way
    This post was originally published on Linked In by Nicolas Reid. It is republished here with permission. Here’s the thing: the City Rail Link is almost certainly going to be overcapacity from day one, with crowding on the trains at peak times. In the simple terms of popular transport ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • You can’t always get what you want
    Grant Robertson is leaving Parliament for two new careers, having been frustrated and blocked from achieving some of his biggest political ambitions. So, he is returning to Dunedin, and, unusually for a former finance minister, with seemingly no ambitions to enter the business world. Instead, he will become Vice Chancellor ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • At a glance – Was Greenland really green in the past?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    5 days ago
  • Sharp-elbowed and loving it
    It doesn't seem to take a lot to persuade someone who feels they work their guts out that in fact no one is working as hard as me.It doesn't seem to take a lot to persuade someone who knows somebody taking the welfare system for a ride that they’re all ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Sharp-elbowed and loving it
    It doesn't seem to take a lot to persuade someone who feels they work their guts out that in fact no one is working as hard as me.It doesn't seem to take a lot to persuade someone who knows somebody taking the welfare system for a ride that they’re all ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Then why did she do it?
    Earlier in the month, Cancer Minister Casey Costello was caught lying to the media about whether or not she had requested advice on cutting tobacco excise tax to benefit the cancer industry. She repeated her lies in Parliament. But today, she stood up and pretended to apologise for "causing confusion" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Is Applying “Tough Love” To A “Fragile” Nation The Right Answer?
    The Question Christopher Luxon Needs To Ask –  And Answer: How was it possible for a nation of barely three million citizens to create and maintain an infrastructure that functioned, schools and universities that turned out well-educated and enterprising citizens, a health system that kept its people healthy, and a workforce ...
    5 days ago
  • The limits to realism.
    Realism is a school of thought in the field of international relations (IR). It provides a theoretical framework for analysing the behaviour of States in the world political system. Like other theories (which in the IR literature include idealism, liberalism, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • UNSOCIAL MEDIA – Following the Trolls
    From TODAY FM archives — Wilhelmina Shrimpton and Simon Morrow take a deep dive into trolling and cyberbullying. From the high profile to the general public, Kiwis across all walks of life are being targeted, and some are paying the ultimate price. So what drives us to troll, who is ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    5 days ago
  • Govt prescribes stiff medicine for some beneficiaries while easing access to drugs containing pseudo...
    Buzz from the Beehive One of two new announcements on the government’s official website  – given plenty of publicity by the mainstream media over the past 24 hours – has been pitched as the first steps in a “reset” of the welfare system.  Stiff medicine for beneficiaries, in effect. The ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • We’re not as fragile or as lazy as Luxon says
    Luxon says his government is one that is “prepared to make those hard decisions”. File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has adopted the language of Ruth Richardson before her 1991 ‘Mother of All Budgets’ in arguing for benefit sanctions to bolster the Government finances, which ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Talking over the Silence.
    Please open the doorNothing is different, we've been here beforePacing these hallsTrying to talk over the silenceIf I was to describe what I do, or at least the way it sometimes feels, then talking over the silence wouldn’t be a bad way to do so.Not that there aren’t other voices ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • LINDSAY MITCHELL: National needs to go further
    Lindsay Mitchell writes – In today’s State of the Nation speech Christopher Luxon talked repeatedly about getting young people off welfare. It seems that National has devised a traffic light system which will use increasing levels of sanctions – welfare deductions – when beneficiaries fail to meet their ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National spreading panic about the economy
    It is a political strategy as old as time. Scare the public with tales of disaster and stampede them into supporting your ideological agenda because they believe There Is No Alternative. Yet, if the NZ economy truly is as “fragile” as PM Christopher Luxon says it is… Then how come ...
    5 days ago
  • The promise of passive house design
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Sarah Wesseler Imagine a home so efficient that it could be heated with a hair dryer. That’s the promise of a passive house, a design standard that’s becoming increasingly popular in the architecture community for its benefits to occupants and the climate. ...
    5 days ago
  • Deep in the Uncanny Valley of AI
    Hi,Before we get started, some very big fun Webworm news. I am launching a new journalism fund called Big Worm Farm!A really great thing that’s happened with Webworm over the last four years is that it’s grown. That’s great for a few reasons.Firstly — it means the work here gets ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Introducing: Big Worm Farm
    Hi,I’m excited to tell you about Big Worm Farm.Put simply, the main aim of Big Worm Farm is to support investigative journalists from around the world to be able to devote dedicated time to research and report on a specific story, to be published on Webworm.The stories will capture the ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Why Massey is broke
    The Tertiary Education Commission has named the two universities it says are at high risk financially. They are Massey and Victoria. The Commission appeared before Parliament’s Education Select Committee yesterday and offered a revealing and rare insight into the complex world of university economics. Its Briefing to the Incoming Minister ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • You keep Luxin' when you oughta be thruthin'
    Christopher Luxon’s campaign to win last year's election continued yesterday with a speech.Channelling possibly Bruce Willis in Die Hard, he was all, I'm not going to dress it up, I'm going to level with you guys: the state of the nation is fragile.The thing he’s maybe missing is that it ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • The PM spoke of the need for tough choices – and then opted to beat a retreat when gays and Gaza a...
    Buzz from the Beehive The PM’s State of the Nation speech – according to a Newshub headline – was a ‘buffet of buzzwords’ and full of ‘nonsense’. Fair to say, the quoted words were attributed to Opposition politicians, who were unlikely to say the speech was visionary and inspiring: PM ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • Keynesian Wisdom.
    When the facts change, I change my mind - what do you do, sir?John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946)This posting is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    6 days ago
  • BRIAN EASTON: Puffing policy
    Public policy towards tobacco consumption remains politically sensitive. Brian Easton writes – In 1983, a young researcher was told by a medium-level Treasury official that Treasury policy was to abandon excise duties on tobacco. The senior Treasury economist that I consulted, famed for his commonsense, snorted ‘we ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Is 2.8% per year population growth too much?
    TL;DR: The Government is reviewing migration settings that produced 2.8% population growth last year and is looking at a longer-term strategy of matching population growth to the ‘absorbtive capacity’ of Aotearoa-NZ’s infrastructure.Our population grew last year at its fastest rate since 1947, when large numbers of troops returning from World ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Tough Choices & Tough Love.
    I've been trying to hurt youI've been holding you tightI've been learning to love youAm I doing it right?How are you still breathingWith my hands all over your heart?How do we start healingIf we can't keep out the dark?Yesterday the Prime Minister delivered his State of the Nation, for no ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Will the 2024 RLTP be yet another debacle?
    A couple of years ago, Auckland Council and Auckland Transport found themselves in court over the 2021 Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP). A non-profit alliance for transport decarbonisation, All Aboard Aotearoa, argued that among other factors, the RLTP was unlawful because it failed to give effect to the 2021 Government ...
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #07
    A listing of 31 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, Feb 11, 2024 thru Sat, Feb 17, 2024. Story of the week Based on mission alignment, our Story of the Week is certainly Can we be inoculated against climate ...
    7 days ago
  • Immigration Issues.
    Help is comingI heard a whisperWhite caps turningThe breath of summerA distant drummingAnd liar birds callingEscape the anguish of our pastAnd prayOne of the major challenges of the the 21st century will be the mass migration of human beings around our globe.Some seeking economic opportunities, others fleeing repressive regimes, war ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Trust us, we know what we’re doing
    The best trick the National Party ever pulled was to fabricate their reputation as the responsible ones.This would be the National Party that denied us the New Zealand Superannuation Scheme that—Brian Gaynor wrote back in 2007would be worth more than $240 billion today and would have transformed the New Zealand ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • The Left’s Timidity
    It is not just Karl Marx – even the most enthusiastic supporters of the market economy (not least Adam Smith) will concede that its normal operation inevitably leads to a concentration of wealth in relatively few hands. Some, at least, of these enthusiasts will accept that such a concentration is ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • OLIVER HARTWICH: Absurd – NZ courts can now decide on climate change
    Oliver Hartwich writes – The World Justice Project ranks New Zealand 7th out of 142 countries on its ‘Rule of Law Index’, narrowly ahead of Australia’s 13th place. However, Australia still has hope – if only because of a recent decision by the Supreme Court of New Zealand. The ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 week ago
  • Still waiting on that turnaround
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past week’s editions.Friday: Week in review, quiz style2. Shane Jones’ demeanour in mocking and deriding climate activists can be observed in what other realm of human behaviour?a. Gleeful little boys pulling wings off fliesb. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Can we be inoculated against climate misinformation? Yes – if we prebunk rather than debunk
    This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article written by Christian Turney, University of Technology Sydney and Sander van der Linden, University of Cambridge and first published on February 14, 2024. Adrien Demers/Shutterstock Last year, the world experienced the hottest day ...
    1 week ago
  • Mihi Forbes and the great Atlas conspiracy
    Graham Adams writes — Last week, Mihingarangi Forbes made an extraordinary claim while interviewing David Seymour on Mata Reports, a taxpayer-funded current affairs programme which, she says, looks at events through an “indigenous lens”. She asked him about Act’s links to the Atlas Network, which fosters connections between centre-right ...
    Point of OrderBy gadams1000
    1 week ago
  • Puffing Policy
    Public policy towards tobacco consumption remains politically sensitive. In 1983, a young researcher was told by a medium-level Treasury official that Treasury policy was to abandon excise duties on tobacco. The senior Treasury economist that I consulted, famed for his commonsense, snorted ‘we need the money’. He explained that no-excise-duty ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago

  • Government backs police to crackdown on gangs
    The coalition Government is restoring law and order by providing police new tools to crack down on criminal gangs, says Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Police Minister Mark Mitchell.  “Over the last five years gangs have recruited more than 3000 members, a 51 per cent increase. At the same time, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Northland’s new Kāeo Bridge officially open
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed the official opening of the new State Highway 10 (SH10) Kāeo Bridge, which will improve safety and traffic flow for people heading to and from the Far North. “This is an important piece of infrastructure for the Northland region that will help members of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Dry weather triggers extra support for farmers and growers across the top of the South Island
    The coalition Government is providing support for farmers and growers as dry conditions worsen across the top of the South Island. “Conditions on the ground across the Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson districts are now extremely dry and likely to get worse in the coming months,” Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Trade Minister heads to Abu Dhabi for key WTO negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay travels to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates for the 13th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) today, to take up his role as Vice Chair of the negotiations. The Ministerial Conference is the highest decision-making body within the WTO and meets every ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Appointment round for King’s Counsel announced
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced an appointment round for King’s Counsel will take place in 2024. Appointments of King’s Counsel are made by the Governor-General on the recommendation of the Attorney-General and with the concurrence of the Chief Justice. The Governor-General retains the discretion to appoint King’s Counsel in recognition ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Retiring Chief of Navy thanked for his service
    Defence Minister Judith Collins has thanked the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral David Proctor, for his service as he retires from the Royal New Zealand Navy after 37 years. Rear Admiral Proctor will retire on 16 May to take up an employment opportunity in Australia.  “I would like to thank ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Indonesian Vice President to visit New Zealand
    Indonesia’s Vice President Ma’ruf Amin will visit New Zealand next week, the first here by an Indonesian leader since 2018, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters has announced. “New Zealand and Indonesia have a strong partnership,” Mr Peters says.  “The Vice President’s visit is an opportunity to discuss how we can strengthen ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government boost to fight against caulerpa
    The battle to contain the fast-spreading exotic caulerpa seaweed has today received a $5 million boost to accelerate the development of removal techniques, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The time is now to really lean in and build on the work of Biosecurity New Zealand, mana whenua, communities and local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister attending Australian data, digital meeting
    Minister for Digitising Government Judith Collins is in Sydney to attend the first Data and Digital Ministers’ Meeting of 2024.  “This is a great opportunity to connect with our Australian counterparts and identify how we can work together on digital transformation,” Ms Collins says.   “Both our nations are looking into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Appointments to Antarctica New Zealand Board
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has appointed Leon Grice and Heather Simpson to serve on the Antarctica New Zealand board.  “Since taking office, the Coalition Government has become concerned about the direction of the Scott Base Redevelopment Project,” Mr Peters says.  “It is vital that Antarctica New Zealand has the right ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Strengthening the Single Economic Market
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis has met with Australian Treasurer Jim Chalmers to discuss the opportunities to lower business costs and increase the ease with which businesses and people can operate across the Tasman.     “I have met with Treasurer Chalmers and shared our new Government’s ambitious economic goals, our plans ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to address business payment practices
    The Government will repeal the Business Payment Practices Act 2023, Small Business and Manufacturing Minister Andrew Bayly announced today. “There is a major problem with large market players imposing long payment terms and routinely paying invoices late. “However, the Business Payment Practices Act is not an effective solution and would ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Greater focus on work will reduce child poverty
    Worsening child poverty rates support the Coalition Government’s focus on reducing the cost of living and getting people into work, Child Poverty Reduction Minister Louise Upston says. Figures released by Stats NZ today show child poverty rates have increased, with the rising cost of living, driven by inflation, making it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ announces new support for Ukraine
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Judith Collins have marked two years since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by announcing further support and sanctions, and extending our military assistance. “Russia launched its illegal, full-scale invasion of Ukraine, in blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter,” Mr Peters says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Finance Minister to meet Australian Treasurer
    Finance Minister Nicola Willis will travel to Australia today to meet her Australian counterpart, Treasurer Jim Chalmers.    “New Zealand and Australia have an incredibly strong trade and investment relationship. The Closer Economic Relations and Single Economic Market are powerful engines for growth on both sides of the Tasman.     “I will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • PM shocked and saddened at death of Efeso Collins
    “I am truly shocked and saddened at the news of Efeso Collins’ sudden death,” Prime Minister Christopher Luxon says. “Efeso was a good man, always friendly and kind, and a true champion and advocate for his Samoan and South Auckland communities. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go to his family, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Greater support for social workers
    The Coalition Government is enhancing the professionalism of the social work sector and supporting the vulnerable people who rely on them, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says.  The Social Workers Registration Legislation Amendment Bill passed its third reading in Parliament today. It amends the Social Workers Registration Legislation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers greater freedom and choice for sick New Zealanders
    The coalition government is delivering on its commitment to making principled decisions by getting rid of red tape that doesn’t make sense and allowing sick New Zealanders greater freedom and choice to purchase effective cold and flu medicines. A bill amending the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975 is being introduced, and changes to the Medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government begins reset of welfare system
    The Coalition Government is taking early action to curb the surge in welfare dependency that occurred under the previous government by setting out its expectations around employment and the use of benefit sanctions, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. In 2017, 60,588 sanctions were applied to beneficiaries who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • State of the Nation
    Ka nui te mihi kia koutou. Kia ora, good morning, talofa, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, da jia hao, namaste, sat sri akal, assalamu alaikum. Thank you for coming to my first State of the Nation as Prime Minister. Thank you for coming to a speech where I don’t just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • West Coast tourism attractions officially open
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will attend the official opening of two highly anticipated tourism projects on the West Coast today – Pike29 Memorial Track, dedicated to the memory of the Pike River miners, and Pounamu Pathway. “The Pike29 Memorial Track is a way to remember and honour the men ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Independent ferry service advisory group in place
    Appointments to the Ministerial Advisory Group tasked with providing independent advice and assurance on the future of KiwiRail’s inter-island ferry service have been made, State Owned Enterprises Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “It’s important for New Zealand that KiwiRail is focused on ensuring safe, resilient, and reliable ferry services over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Joint statement from the Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand
    The Prime Ministers of Australia, Canada and New Zealand today issued the following statement on reports of Israel’s planned military operation in Rafah. We are gravely concerned by indications that Israel is planning a ground offensive into Rafah.   A military operation into Rafah would be catastrophic. About 1.5 million Palestinians ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt will deliver on expanded breast screening
    The coalition Government has made the first steps in delivering on its promise to  extend free breast screening to women aged 70-74, Health Minister Shane Reti says. “As part of the 100 day plan, the Government has now met with officials and discussed what is needed in order for the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government announces woolshed roadshows in support of sheep farmers
    The Government celebrates National Lamb Day (15 February 24) and congratulates sheep farmers on the high-quality products they continue to produce. Agriculture Minister McClay hosted bipartisan celebrations of National Lamb Day with industry representatives at Parliament this week to mark the anniversary of the first frozen lamb exports that left ...
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    1 week ago
  • Speech: Address to the NZ Economics Forum
    It’s great to be back at the New Zealand Economics Forum. I would like to acknowledge everyone here today for your expertise and contribution, especially the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Head of the Waikato Management School, economists, students and experts alike. A year has passed since I was last before you, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government tackling high construction costs
    The Government is focused on reducing sky-high construction costs to make it more affordable to build a home, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says.  Stats NZ data shows the cost of building a house has increased by 41 per cent since 2019, making housing even more unaffordable for Kiwi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Three Waters legislation repealed
    The Coalition Government’s legislative plan to address longstanding issues with local water infrastructure and service delivery took an important step today, with the repeal of Labour’s divisive and unpopular Three Waters legislation, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says. “Repealing this legislation is a necessary first step in implementing our Local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Cost of living support for beneficiary households
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its commitment to ease the cost-of-living by increasing main benefit rates in line with inflation and ensuring the Minimum Family Tax Credit threshold remains aligned with this change, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. The Social Security (Benefits Adjustment) and Income Tax ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government announces agriculture delegations to better support Primary sector
    The coalition Government has announced ministerial delegations to support key areas across the Primary sector to deliver for New Zealand’s food and fibre sector, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today. “I will be supported in my roles as Minister of Agriculture, Trade, Forestry and Hunting and Fishing, by three Associate ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Waikato MoU reinforces Govt’s commitment to increase NZ doctors
    The Government has taken an important step forward in addressing a critical shortage of New Zealand-trained doctors, with today’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for a third medical school, Minister of Health Dr Shane Reti has announced.  “Today’s signing by the Ministry of Health and the University of Waikato ...
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  • Speech – Lunar New Year 2024
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