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Unemployment – No Story Here

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, January 8th, 2011 - 65 comments
Categories: unemployment - Tags: , ,

Youth unemployment is 19.8%, but is there much coverage of a shockingly high number?  That’s 1 in 5 young people Not in Employment, Education or Training (NEETs to the initiated); higher than the OECD average.

If you’re not listening to Radio NZ, you’re not to find out about it.

Clare Curran correctly points out that unemployment seems to have fallen off the media radar.  We have a new norm that means between 6 and 7% of the workforce is unemployed, double the previous government’s trend, and that seems to have been accepted.  75,000 people added to this government’s scrap heap?  Fine if it’s no one you know.  Best we up the bene-bashing, that’ll solve the problem.  With John Key relentlessly focussed on Hawaii, not Jobs, it seems about this government’s only solution.  Unless that cycleway comes through real soon.

Social Development Minister, Paula Bennett, used to give us the monthly unemployment updates those months they went in the right direction (either seasonally adjusted, or raw figures, whichever worked…) – so the fact that she hasn’t could mean 2 things: all those weeks on her US ‘sabbatical’ kept her too busy, or the numbers are bad.  It shows how focussed on getting Kiwis jobs this government is, that the Social Development Minister could afford several weeks out of the country on a jolly.  We know she made it back for Christmas, as what this government is relentlessly focussed on is PR, so we all got to hear how she wanted SBW as her man-slave…  Get that image out of your head.

Bennett is also Minister for Youth Affairs.  She has trumpeted Job Ops and Community Max for making ‘a real difference to youth’ – getting them training at McDonald’s flipping burgers.  But it turns out those burger jobs just weren’t there when the country headed into double-dip recession…

65 comments on “Unemployment – No Story Here ”

  1. BLiP 1

    Hey, c’mon! The retailers are doing it tough – why would the media want to detract from the efforts of advertisers by reminding the populace that their continuing likelihood of employment is getting bleaker by the day when they might better be considering the hire-purchase of a brand new flat screen?

  2. Deadly_NZ 2

    Didn’t she or winz have some sort off special deal with Macca’s? cost about 5 mil or sommat like that? Hang on Google search time.. Gotcha

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/2557352/McDonalds-to-get-up-to-16-000-a-beneficiary
    or here is another slant on it
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO0907/S00146.htm

    And the one thing that was not mentioned was how many hours did the new employee’s work a week? if Macca’s get 300 a week per new employee then winz effectivly pay for 24 hours a week gross 300/12.5 the question here is how many actually work the 24 hours? and how many work less and macca’s still get the 300 notice Macca’s get it all and the poor employee is on a basic wage, a nice rort going on here it seems

  3. Adele 3

    Teenaa koutou kaatoa

    I have simply quoted from the Department of Labour website:

    Unemployment rates by ethnicity June 2008 – June 2010:

    Maaori 7.3% – 14.3%; Pasifika 6.3% – 15.5%; all ethnicities 3.9% – 6.7%

    Youth (those aged 15-24 years) have been particularly affected during the labour market downturn, and Maaori and Pasifika youth have been hit hardest. Between June 2008 and June 2010, Maaori and Pasifika youth employment declined by 21.5% and 21.6% respectively. These declines were more than twice the size of the 10.3% fall in employment for all youth over the same period.

    The Maaori and Pasifika youth unemployment rates have more than doubled in the two years to June 2010. The Maaori youth unemployment rate has increased from 15.1% to 30.3%, while the Pasifika rate has increased from 14.2% to 30.6%. The unemployment rate for all youth has not increased so quickly, rising from 10.7% to 18.2%.

    A lot of Maaori and Pasifika potential suffering inertia. Maybe Paula Bennett should organise with Judith Collins to have more of our youth killed in Police chases – to bring those stats down.

  4. Paula “big mac” Bennett is a disgrace. Her pseudo “proud to be a westie” antics are cringeworthy.

    It is noticeable that if there is a spin and a distortion that can be put on the unemployment figures she is there with boots on but if the figures are irredeemably bad then she is nowhere to be seen.

    She is one person I would be pleased to see unemployed. Then perhaps the rest of the unemployed would have a greater chance.

    • Deadly_NZ 4.1

      I read an interview she gave and i posted the link in another post it made for scarey reading she has not got a clue. Hang on i’ll go find it.

      http://tvnz.co.nz/q-and-a-news/q-paula-bennett-interviewed-guyon-espiner-3436376

      Warning contents may make you nauseous

      • Mickysavage 4.1.1

        Truly scary.

        Isn’t she like yuukno a minista or sumefing?

      • ianmac 4.1.2

        A very interesting interview Deadly. For once I am impressed with Guyon’s interview. Wow! As for Paula Bennett. She does have a strong support from the Bludger Brigade but the holes in her policy must prove hellish for the actual people in the gun. It does seem overall that the policy on say DPB will greatly increase the workload for Social Welfare. Maybe those coming off the benefits will be needed to staff the offices?

        • Deadly_NZ 4.1.2.1

          I was talking to someone at a winz office the other day and was shocked to find out that as people leave they DO NOT replace them.

          Which is why it now can take their call center 45 mins to answer the phone, that and all the extra work they do. (emergency food grants and things) so with less and less staff and more and more people getting tossed out of work, and it always seems to be the young that get the raw end of the deal. Soon it will take so long to get some help from WINZ because of no staff that the crime rate will then rocket as starving people have to feed themselves and their families, get arrested and locked up for stealing food. and a proud Paula Bennet can say SEE i did fix the unemployment problem, and then the minister for justice screams for more money for more prisons to house said people. And the private prison company is happy. Then the problem has shifted and the great fat bennet can look around at the carnage and say to Shonkey see i dun gud.

          • millsy 4.1.2.1.1

            “Which is why it now can take their call center 45 mins to answer the phone”

            I would also point out that Winz only accept calls to their 0800 numbers from landlines, not cellphones, seeing as >95% of people on a benefit dont have the phone on, and find getting credit for their cellphone an uphill battle, they have to go to the nearest phone booth, and deal with winz over that.

            • Deadly_NZ 4.1.2.1.1.1

              I would also point out that Winz only accept calls to their 0800 numbers from landlines.

              And they are not the only ones it seems there is a conspiricy going on because most places you need to have phone contact with only except calls from a land line IE most banks, IRD Most Councils. And as cellphones are most peoples way of contact (and you try to find a call box that actually works). SO now you have it that ostt people cannot contact these companies they can say see look no phone complaints.

              I wonder how long it will be before they outsource the Call center to bloody manilla or something like that. And if you have tried to deal with telescums or telstra clears call centers you will know what I mean. the “Im Sorry I appologise But.” seems to be the main line I get when trying to sort out a phone problem. SO imagine you have had your bene cut and you have to deal with someeone in another country that couldn’t give a flying fuck about you and your problems cos they only on 50 bucks a week or so.

              • Zorr

                You can make the 0800 call from a payphone. Not so much of an issue.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Except for the 20-30 minute walk in the rain to get to one. Damn, I’m not even sure where my nearest payphone is.

                  • McFlock

                    Only about 10 minutes walk to the nearest payphone for me.

                    In the rain.

                    To sit in the damned callbox for 45mins before talking with a person.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.1.2.2

          From what I’ve seen, her policies increase workload right across WINZ for no benefit. Haven’t got a job and can’t find one? You have to go see the case manager. The longer you haven’t got a job the more you have to see the case manager.

          Seeing the case manager does two things: Takes time out of the case managers day when they could probably be doing something better and takes time out of the persons day that could be used for looking for a job.

          So, decreased efficiency and higher costs: Thanx NACT, I’m loving it.

  5. Matthew Hooton 5

    You don’t think that, just possibly, the 19.8% unemployment rate among 15-24 year olds could have something to do with the previous government’s decision to abolish youth rates (and the current government’s refusal to reverse the decision), which is estimated to have cost 12,000 youth jobs?

    • andy (the other one) 5.1

      Matthew, do you work for the hospitality assoc or or do any work for retailers?

      Youth rates may or may not have any impact. In a recession where year on year consumption is dropping, I would have thought that would have a bigger impact on hiring in general. Also the fact that school finishes every year in December which spits out a years worth of unemployed yoof..

      I left school in 1989, and no one was hiring. Wage rates were meaningless in the face of falling demand. I don’t think youth rates were a problem for employers in the boom years, or did not seem to be.

      The current government will not reverse youth rates because they understand it won’t help and will give Labour a stick to beat them with.

    • Bunji 5.2

      So do you think that youth are worth less as human beings and deserve lower rights?
      If it’s just a means to an end, would you agree with Maori and Pasifika having lower minimum wages with their unemployment rates of 14.3% and 15.5%? (thanks Adele)
      Youth rates may have a small effect on youth unemployment, but it’s not creating jobs, it’s just taking them off older workers. We need a government that’s actually creating jobs to solve the problem overall.

    • millsy 5.3

      It speaks volumes about the attitudes of some people if bosses wont hire a young person because he cannot pay them subsistence wages..

      Hooten, if youth wages are bought back, it will have the effect of slashing wages to little above the level of benefits, and creating an army of working poor who will struggle to meet costs of living (especially young people trying to bring up families)

      But, you dont seem to care do you, as long as you just keep pushing down wages.

      Tell me, what is your opinion of the American labour market prior to 1865?

      • Deadly_NZ 5.3.1

        As an Ex boss of Pizza parlors and Burger Bars ALL i hired was teens AND they were paid the 12.50 to start and given oppertunities to up this wage as well. As to the Idiots who say cut the minimum wage I say this The Minimum wage should be extended back to 15 year olds as well. As at the mo they are the ones that can be exploited. The companies I worked for paid an Under 16 $9.90 an hour with the same opportunities to up the hourly rate as everyone else in the company ( You did courses on the computer about product and procedure, from memory there were 6 of them, and each one passed (a 10 min course) was an extra .50c an hour not much but with a little work a 15 year old could earn 13 an hour.) which was way better than the 6 being offered by other companies. Unfortunatly those companies have gone from a corporate ownership to private ownership with the usual cutting of these rates and the accompanying loss of jobs.

    • Eddie 5.4

      “which is estimated to have cost 12,000 youth jobs”

      estimated by whom?

      By your PR company?

      or by that nutter Crampton – the guy who defends sweatshops because ‘it’s better than nothing’ (as if nothing is the only alternative) http://offsettingbehaviour.blogspot.com/2009/05/sweatshops.html ?

      face it – you’re saying that less pay for the same work is justified for young people. Now you have to justify it for other groups with higher unemployment – Maori, Pasifika

      • I tend to think it rather important in policy making to separate questions of desert from questions of feasibility. I don’t know anything about desert – I’ve no comparative advantage in sorting out who deserves what. But neither do you. What I do know about is how policy changes affect outcomes. Banning sweatshops pushed poor vulnerable folks out of work that they preferred into situations that they found worse: picking garbage in dumps, prostitution, agriculture in malaria-ridden areas. Sure it would be nice if everyone in third world countries could have our advantages, but trying to mandate it through legislation often makes things worse.

        The minimum wage will always have the worst employment effects on the most vulnerable groups: the folks whose labour is valued by their employers at not much more than what they’re paid. A legislated pay hike pushes some of them out of work – and even more so when a rather bad recession hits. It’s killed the sheltered workshops (the paperwork to get exemptions too onerous), it’s killed youth employment.

        If the work were really the same – if young folks with no experience and no references were just as expectationally productive as somebody with experience and a good track record – then we wouldn’t have seen the ramp up in youth unemployment that we have seen. I don’t know much about deserves. But I don’t think these kids have deserved what y’all have done to them.

        • McFlock 5.4.1.1

          The trouble is that if you solely look at questions of “feasibility”, some little sociopath might not realise that *both* sweatshops and abandoning the unemployed to the rubbish tip (literally) are bad things.

    • Descendant Of Smith 5.5

      Nope everyone I know lost their job because there was no work available – nothing at all to do with the rate of pay.

      Contracts were lost or finished with no replacements, sales went down, their were less houses being sold, less tourists coming to town – both internal and external, less jobs as other people were laid off and no longer had the cash to buy things, firms going out of business cause some other person who owed them money went bust, export contracts lost as firms overseas went bust,drought meaning less stock on farms and less stock to kill in freezing works, lending stopped by banks to allow companies and businesses to ride through the tough patches, piss poor management by business owners who had no money put aside from when times were good to enable them to survive when times were not, and so on.

      Nary a mention of pay rates at all.

      Mate if there’s no work and no export order the rate of pay makes no difference at all to employing someone – or are you saying employers will take people on if there is no work for them?

      It simply allows those that currently have work to reduce wages and increase profits – predominantly the corporates who can then further consolidate their position to remove small businesses from the equation. It’s also anti-competitive because it makes good employers have to compete with bad employers on a wage basis rather than a quality of service or product.

      It’s like tax cuts for business – before the tax cuts many employers said they couldn’t afford to pay their staff more – there isn’t a single person I know who had an employer say to them now that I don’t have to pay as much tax you can have a pay increase.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.6

      Nope. As research has shown that there is no correlation.

    • lprent 5.7

      Matthew.. Rather pathetic spin and unlinked numbers as well. Who was it estimated by? What data did they use? Why does your comment have the stench of a spinner bullshitting?

      The family problem


      If you look at the links you’ll find that youth rates across countries have no general correlation with youth unemployment rates.

      Indeed I have never seen a credible economist making a case for it – ie using actual numbers to show the correlation. It appears to be one of those nice conservative/neolib myths that substitutes a slogan for using their brain (like so many other neolib precepts).

      Perhaps you’d care to find some actual argument to back up your spin?

      • Matthew Hooton 5.7.1

        Analysis was done by Eric Crampton, Senior Lecturer, Economics Department, University of Canterbury

        • Colonial Viper 5.7.1.1

          Employers will simply swap out older workers for younger workers in basic labouring and unskilled jobs, and leave higher cost older workers standing in the dole queue.

          Seems unlikely to me that actual additional new jobs will be created.

          To me this is a tactic in the Right’s larger strategy of worker wage suppression.

          The question I have of our elite business leaders, the EMA, the Chamber of Commerce etc is: how are you going to raise the wages of the median NZer by 20% (to $33K p.a.) over the next 5 years. That’s a bare 3.7% increase p.a.

          If you can’t do that for us, why the frak should we even listen to what you have to say.

        • scarfie 5.7.1.2

          The “analysis” by Crampton is nonsense, see Marty G:

          The lie behind the Right’s attack on wages

          Youth rates are just a variant on minimum wages – which have no effect on unemployment:

          Minimum wage myths: unemployment

        • Eddie 5.7.1.3

          This is the same crampton who argues in favour of sweatshops.

          his analysis fails to show any causation, and tries to blithely ignore that internationally youth unemployment has worsened dramatically due to the Great Recession.

          • Eric Crampton 5.7.1.3.1

            You’re right that I do not show causation. What I did show is that youth unemployment, relative to the adult unemployment rate, went crazy very shortly after the youth minimum wage was hiked to the adult rate – and went crazy in a way that it didn’t in any recession in any of the Household Labour Force Survey data.

            You’re also right that youth unemployment always does worse than adult unemployment during recessions. That’s why I wanted a long time series of the relationship between the two that covered a few recessions. Something really weird happened third quarter 2008 that wasn’t seen in any of the recessions since the 80s. I rather expect that it was the abolition of the youth minimum wage, but it could have been something else. But there was no other policy change that hit that specific age cohort with the right timing.

            As for international evidence, The Economist recently noted that our youth unemployment rate, as a multiple of the adult unemployment rate, is third worst in the OECD.

            And, yes, I do argue in favour of sweatshops. They’re certainly better than prostitution or picking trash out of garbage dumps. Those are often the alternatives open when misguided rich kids launch boycotts that close the factories where these folks work.

            • Marty G 5.7.1.3.1.1

              “And, yes, I do argue in favour of sweatshops. They’re certainly better than prostitution or picking trash out of garbage dumps. Those are often the alternatives open when misguided rich kids launch boycotts that close the factories where these folks work.”

              The alternative is that the multinationals pay their workers living wages you cretin.

              Those “misguided rich kids” are saying its immoral to buy products from companies that are profiting off exploiting people by not paying decent wages with fair conditions.

              Moreover, they’re acknowledging that the basis of the international trade system is not real competitive advantage in many cases but exploitation of artificial differences created by lax labour laws in some countries.

              On top of that, they know that if they support a system that transfers jobs out of their economy to somewhere else where the workers are sweated then eventually they end up worse off too because their economy’s manufacturing is hollowed out and their are no jobs.

              The only people who win from an international trade system based on sweatshops and the race to the bottom is the corporates – and, eventually, they suffer because – as history has shown time and again – when an elite preys on the people too much eventually they are left with nothing to prey on and the system collapses.

              • They should give them all ponies too. And round trip tickets to Disneyland.

                • Armchair Critic

                  and a PhD in economics

                • Marty G

                  are you saying that multinationals can’t afford to pay living wages to those they are sweating? or are you just being childish because you don’t have any serious rebuttal?

                  • Are you saying they can’t afford to give them ponies?

                    Note that wages at sweatshops are higher than prevailing wages in those countries – that’s why workers try to get jobs in those factories rather than elsewhere.

                    • Marty G

                      “Note that wages at sweatshops are higher than prevailing wages in those countries – that’s why workers try to get jobs in those factories rather than elsewhere.”

                      that doesn’t mean they’re adequate.

                      there used to be sweatshops in the West too. They got workers for their inhuman wages and conditions too. That didn’t make sweatshops acceptable. Minimum standards for pay and conditions were set. The world didn’t end. We all ended up wealthier.

                      One of the things people like you don’t seem to understand is that ultimately the durability and wealth of a society depends on its fairness. You need an educated, healthy, content workforce for the economy to work well. In the end, if the wealthy elite take too much of the wealth for themselves the rest start to reject the system – it ends in revolution if the elite is stupid, or reform if the elite is sensible.

            • QoT 5.7.1.3.1.2

              And, yes, I do argue in favour of sweatshops. They’re certainly better than prostitution or picking trash out of garbage dumps.

              One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just doesn’t belong (I’ll give you a hint, it’s the one that while “morally” “dubious” and just as bad when undertaken under coercion as, well, all slavery, can still be performed voluntarily for hundreds of dollars an hour.)

              • If somebody chose a factory over prostitution, then went to prostitution when the factory closed, I’d have to say that that person preferred the factory. If somebody preferred prostitution from the outset, that’s of course different.

                • QoT

                  That’s … got an awesome amount of nothing to do with either your original comment or my response to it. But thanks for playing!

        • lprent 5.7.1.4

          Still no link – means that I can’t dig into the ‘analysis’. But his work has been somewhat questionable in the past in my view. Last thing I read from him started with a questionable precept which he asserted was true without bothering to substantiate, and he then built a pyramid from that.

          I classed him as a ‘number of angels on the head’ analyst with approximately the level of credibility of a 12th century monk building scholarship based on texts written on the 4th century mistranslations. In other words garbage in garbage out

          His comments around here have been notable for that style of writing.
          http://thestandard.org.nz/?s=%40author+Eric+crampton&isopen=none&search_posts=true&search_comments=true&search_sortby=date

          • Eric Crampton 5.7.1.4.1

            I have no clue what you’re on about, lprent (what the hell is up with nobody here using a real name anyway?!). Go to Offsetting Behaviour, hit the sidebar link on minimum wages. The bit relevant to New Zealand started with a very basic ordinary least squares regression of the youth unemployment rate on the adult unemployment rate (Household Labour Force Survey Data), then plotting the residuals of that regression to show that something very odd happened to the youth unemployment rate as a function of the adult rate starting around third quarter 2008. The changes in the youth minimum wage are a smoking gun given the timing (don’t tell me it’s just the recession – look at the path of the residual in prior recessions which were worse here).

            • Marty G 5.7.1.4.1.1

              lprent is short for lynn prentice genius. Rocky is short for Rochelle Prentice. Mike Smith is short for Michael Smith.

              I’ll leave you to guess what Marty G is short for.

              Not that it matters because this is a debate of ideas.

              I don’t know who Eric Crampton is. It may as well be a pseudonym. I just know its ideas suck.

              You haven’t explained why a similar upshoot in the youth rate occurred during the last long recession – the one triggered by the neoliberal reforms in the late 80s/early 90s – when there was a youth rate. You haven’t explained how other countries have also experienced upshoots in their youth unemployment despite not having recently abolished their minimum wage.

              You’re basically reduced to arguing this upshoot is may be slightly worse than in other recessions, which can be explained by a variety of causes. Not all recessions are the same and the youth population is not the same as it was.

              • QoT

                Marty Godlikeeconomicsblogger?

              • Thanks for the partial disambiguation; I always prefer knowing to whom I’m talking.

                The youth unemployment rate went up then, sure, but not by nearly as much or as quickly relative to the adult unemployment rate. From 1990 to 1992 or so, the unexplained part of youth unemployment relative to adult unemployment climbed four points. This time, it climbed about 8 points in a year.

                And our youth unemployment rate, relative to the adult rate, is third worst in the OECD.

                It’s always possible that something else was to blame for a sharp shift in the relationship between the youth and adult unemployment rates starting around third quarter 2008. Just like it’s always possible that the guy holding the smoking gun wasn’t really the killer.

                • McFlock

                  Hmmm. I’m just trying to remember how accurate the last “smoking gun” analogy I heard was.

                • Zaphod Beeblebrox

                  If you’ve got temporal correlation but no causation- what’s the value of the research? There’s an emormous number of cofounding factors to consider.

                  • Descendant Of Smith

                    One example of a causative factor around that time in the Hawkes Bay was youth not going into seasonal work as these jobs were taken up by other displaced workers such as Real Estate Agents, used car salesman and housewives as a result of their husbands losing jobs having reduced hours.

                    You’ll see the growth in unemployment happen later in the Hawkes Bay e.g. growth in November for most of the rest of the country – June July the following year for Hawkes Bay as a result.

                    Add to that mix a younger than national average population and a drought, freezing works reducing staff on a last on first off basis, additional overseas workers in the seasonal industry that are kept on as crops fluctuate, a reduction in tourism and eating out where a substantial chunk of youth are employed, young people returning home to mum and dad from other regions and from overseas where they have lost their jobs, less taking up study and willing to get into debt, the hidden youth who might not have been in the stats before as they lived off mum and dad but can;t any more because mum and dad don’t have work and so on and you’ll soon see that very little of this growth has anything to do with youth rates.

                    Most seasonal work is on a contract basis anyway that doesn’t differentiate. It’s simply that a used car salesman is more likely to have a vehicle to get to the seasonal work than a young person who does not – turning up at the gate for a job makes you more likely to get one.

            • lprent 5.7.1.4.1.2

              I have no clue what you’re on about, lprent (what the hell is up with nobody here using a real name anyway?!)

              I’ve been using lprent since 1979 when it was given as a login for my computer access for the first degree. It has been my net name ever since.

              It is and always has been standard for the net discussions to largely be pseudonymous because it frees up the discussion and stops a lot of the flame wars that result from stalking. The moderators take care of abuses and we don’t really appreciate idiots with little understanding of the net who don’t work on the site wanting to set the rules (see the about and policy).

              It is my policy to encourage people to use pseudonyms to reduce the silliness in the discussions that results without them. So I use one myself, and frankly I don’t really care what you think about it.

    • Colonial Viper 5.8

      Matthew, tell me what youth rate is required to reduce youth unemployment by a third, and then lets go do it ASAP. Is it $12/hr? $11/hr? $10/hr?

      Will be waiting on your response with baited breath.

      • Deadly_NZ 5.8.1

        Exactly if there’s no work then it don’t matter if the pay is a buck an hour or a grand an hour no work = 0 per hour rgardless.

  6. I think the underemployment of senior executives should be addressed by putting them all on youth rates. Market forces should do the trick!

  7. tc 7

    “I read an interview she gave and i posted the link in another post it made for scarey reading she has not got a clue.”

    Yes DNZ that appears a pre-requisite in this gov’t with most ministers by design as the old guard which may have had a better grip but just aren’t up with the ‘program’ as the likes of Basher/Crusher/AyaTolley/Wilko etc are who just follow that script as directed.

  8. Craig GlenEden 8

    Bennett’s dumber than dog shit, being dumb is the one trait you can rely on in a Bully.

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    We have a new norm that means between 6 and 7% of the workforce is unemployed, double the previous government’s trend, and that seems to have been accepted.

    Well, Blinglish did say that unemployment below 6% was a fraud and we know that the MSM accepts what NACT say uncritically so, yeah, we really shouldn’t expect them to actually say anything about unemployment rising.

  10. Afewknowthetruth 10

    In view of the fact that conventional world oil extraction has peaked (even the International Energy Agency finally admitted the truth in November 2010), all economic activity that involves use of oil must go into decline. That does mean practically everything in the NZ economy. The prognosis for employment in the current sense of the word is obvious to anyone with a brain that still functions properly (junk food and rampant commercialism do seem to have deadened the brains of most people in western nation, unfortunately). There is substantial evidence the great unravelling commenced in 2008, but desperation measires by governments around the workd (so-called bailouts, quantitative easing etc.) generated the pretence of a recovery for a while. All that happened, of course, was that they dug the hole a bit deeper.

    We are headed into an energy and environmental bottleneck that will ‘crush’ everything mainstream over the next decade, starting with the service sector.

    Rather than being led by wise leaders who are implementing policies appropriate to the times we live (energy descent), we are being led by madmen/madwomen who implement policies that squander what litttle resources we have left and make everything worse in the process.

    Interesting times (in the Chinese curse sense).

    Pity the next generation.

  11. Deadly_NZ 11

    I have just come back from my local New World supermarket, and I just had an argument with the manageress there. there were huge queues and i asked them to open an express lane which they did. I was then told quite rudely that if I was in a hurry i could use the Automated cashier service, no person to scan your groceries you do it all your self. To which I asked quite loudly how many teens had lost their jobs because of these machines, and also informed her that if i was going to spend my money there then I want someone to pack my groceries. and as i left all i hear is stuff about me being inconsiderate.

    I tell you i will go else where for my groceries in future

    I notice these machines are in Pak n Save too maybe a boycott is needed or soon there will be no people working in supermarkets at all

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    11 hours ago
  • Speech to the Sustainable Healthcare and Climate Health Conference Aotearoa
    Mihi Tēnā tātou katoa Kei ngā pou o te whare hauora ki Aotearoa, kei te mihi. Tēnā koutou i tā koutou pōwhiri mai i ahau. E mihi ana ki ngā taura tangata e hono ana i a tātou katoa, ko te kaupapa o te rā tērā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ...
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    16 hours ago
  • Infrastructure Acceleration Fund opening for business
    Criteria to access at least $1 billion of the $3.8 billion Housing Acceleration Fund (HAF), announced in March, is now available, and an invitation for expressions of interest will be released on 30 June, Housing Minister Megan Woods has announced.  “This is a key milestone in our plan to accelerate ...
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    17 hours ago
  • Bringing back the health of Hauraki Gulf
    New marine protection areas and restrictions on fishing are among a raft of changes being put in place to protect the Hauraki Gulf for future generations. The new strategy, Revitalising the Gulf – Government action on the Sea Change Plan, released today, draws on input from mana whenua, local communities, ...
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    20 hours ago
  • Speech to AI Forum – Autonomous Weapons Systems
    AI Forum New Zealand, Auckland Good evening and thank you so much for joining me this evening. I’d like to start with a thank you to the AI Forum Executive for getting this event off the ground and for all their work and support to date. The prospect of autonomous ...
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    1 day ago
  • New Zealand boosts support to Fiji for COVID-19 impact
    Aotearoa New Zealand is providing additional support to Fiji to mitigate the effects of the current COVID-19 outbreak on vulnerable households, Foreign Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta announced today. “Recognising the increasingly challenging situation in Fiji, Aotearoa will provide an additional package of assistance to support the Government of Fiji and ...
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    2 days ago
  • Round 2 of successful energy education fund now open
    $1.65 million available in Support for Energy Education in Communities funding round two Insights from SEEC to inform future energy hardship programmes Community organisations that can deliver energy education to households in need are being invited to apply for the second funding round of the Support for Energy Education in ...
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    2 days ago
  • New Ngarimu scholarships to target vocational training
    Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis today announced three new scholarships for students in vocational education and training (VET) are to be added to the suite of prestigious Ngarimu scholarships. “VET learners have less access to study support than university students and this is a way to tautoko their learning dreams ...
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    2 days ago
  • Recognising the volunteers who support our health system
    Nominations have opened today for the 2021 Minister of Health Volunteer Awards, as part of National Volunteer Week. “We know that New Zealanders donate at least 159 million hours of volunteer labour every year,” Minister of Health Andrew Little said in launching this year’s awards in Wellington. “These people play ...
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    2 days ago
  • Drug Free Sport supported to deal with new doping challenges
    Drug Free Sport New Zealand will receive a funding boost to respond to some of the emerging doping challenges across international sport. The additional $4.3 million over three years comes from the Sport Recovery Fund announced last year. It will help DFSNZ improve athletes’ understanding of the risks of doping, ...
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    2 days ago
  • Government support for South Auckland community hit by tornado
    The Government is contributing $100,000 to a Mayoral Relief Fund to support Auckland communities impacted by the Papatoetoe tornado, Acting Minister for Emergency Management Kris Faafoi says. “My heart goes out to the family and friends who have lost a loved one, and to those who have been injured. I ...
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    3 days ago
  • Celebrating World Refugee Day
    World Refugee Day today is an opportunity to celebrate the proud record New Zealanders have supporting and protecting refugees and acknowledge the contribution these new New Zealanders make to our country, the Minister of Immigration Kris Faafoi said. “World Refugee Day is also a chance to think about the journey ...
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    3 days ago
  • Face to face meeting delivers significant progress on NZ-UK FTA
    New Zealand and the UK have committed to accelerating their free trade agreement negotiations with the aim of reaching an agreement in principle this August, Trade Minister Damien O’Connor announced. “We’ve held constructive and productive discussions towards the conclusion of a high-quality and comprehensive FTA that will support sustainable and inclusive trade, and ...
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    4 days ago
  • Government taking action to protect albatross
    New population figures for the critically endangered Antipodean albatross showing a 5 percent decline per year highlights the importance of reducing all threats to these very special birds, Acting Minister of Conservation Dr Ayesha Verrall says. The latest population modelling, carried out by Dragonfly Data Science, shows the Antipodean albatross ...
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    4 days ago
  • Adoption laws under review
    New Zealand’s 66-year-old adoption laws are being reviewed, with public engagement beginning today.  Justice Minister Kris Faafoi said the Government is seeking views on options for change to our adoption laws and system. “The Adoption Act has remained largely the same since 1955. We need our adoption laws to reflect ...
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    5 days ago
  • Wider roll-out of cameras on boats to support sustainability and protect marine life
    Up to 300 inshore commercial fishing vessels will be fitted with on-board cameras by 2024 as part of the Government’s commitment to protect the natural marine environment for future generations.  Minister for Oceans and Fisheries David Parker today announced the funding is now in place for the wider roll out ...
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    5 days ago
  • Plan for vaccine rollout for general population announced
    New Zealanders over 60 will be offered a vaccination from July 28 and those over 55 from August 11, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The rollout of the vaccine to the general population will be done in age groups as is the approach commonly used overseas, with those over ...
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    6 days ago
  • New Zealand introduces Belarus travel bans
    New Zealand has imposed travel bans on selected individuals associated with the Lukashenko regime, following ongoing concerns about election fraud and human rights abuses after the 2020 Belarus elections, Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta has announced. The ban covers more than fifty individuals, including the President and key members of ...
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    6 days ago
  • NZ economy grows driven by households, construction and business investment
    The Government’s efforts to secure the recovery have been reflected in the robust rebound of GDP figures released today which show the economy remains resilient despite the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Grant Robertson said. GDP increased 1.6 percent in the first three months of 2021. The Treasury had ...
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    6 days ago
  • Milestone 250th tower continues to improve rural connectivity
    The Government has welcomed the completion of the 250th 4G mobile tower, as part of its push for better rural connectivity. Waikato’s Wiltsdown, which is roughly 80 kilometres south of Hamilton, is home to the new tower, deployed by the Rural Connectivity Group to enable improved service to 70 homes ...
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    6 days ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria to lift on Tuesday
    Following a further public health assessment of the COVID-19 outbreak in greater Melbourne, New Zealand’s Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria has been extended to 11.59pm on Tuesday 22 June, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says. It has been determined that the risk to public health in New Zealand continues ...
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    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister mourns passing of Dr Sir Ian Hassall
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is mourning the passing of Dr Sir Ian Hassall, New Zealand’s first Children’s Commissioner and lifelong champion for children and children’s health. As a paediatrician Sir Ian contributed to a major world-first cot death study that has been directly credited with reducing cot deaths in New ...
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    6 days ago
  • APEC structural reform meeting a success
    APEC ministers have agreed working together will be crucial to ensure economies recover from the impact of COVID-19. Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs David Clark, chaired the virtual APEC Structural Reform Ministerial Meeting today which revolved around the overarching theme of promoting balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth ...
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    7 days ago
  • Digital hub to boost investment in forestry
    A new website has been launched at Fieldays to support the forestry sector find the information it needs to plant, grow and manage trees, and to encourage investment across the wider industry. Forestry Minister Stuart Nash says the new Canopy website is tailored for farmers, iwi and other forestry interests, ...
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    7 days ago
  • Government continues support for rangatahi to get into employment, education and training
    Over 230 rangatahi are set to benefit from further funding through four new He Poutama Rangatahi programmes, Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “We’re continuing to secure our economic recovery from COVID by investing in opportunities for rangatahi to get into meaningful employment, education or training ...
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    7 days ago
  • NCEA subjects up for consultation
    The education sector, students, their parents, whānau and communities are invited to share their thoughts on a list of proposed NCEA subjects released today, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. This is a significant part of the Government’s NCEA Change Programme that commenced in 2020 and will be largely implemented by ...
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    7 days ago
  • Major investment in plantain forage programme aims to improve freshwater quality
    The Government is backing a major programme investigating plantain’s potential to help farmers protect waterways and improve freshwater quality, Acting Agriculture Minister Meka Whaitiri announced at Fieldays today. The Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures (SFFF) fund is contributing $8.98 million to the $22.23 million seven-year programme, which aims to deliver ...
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    7 days ago
  • America’s Cup decision
    The Minister responsible for the America’s Cup has confirmed the joint Crown-Auckland Council offer to host the next regatta has been declined by the Board of Team New Zealand. “The exclusive period of negotiation between the Crown, Auckland Council, and Team New Zealand ends tomorrow, 17 June,” said Stuart Nash. ...
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    7 days ago
  • Food and fibres sector making significant strides towards New Zealand’s economic recovery
    The Government is backing the food and fibres sector to lead New Zealand's economic recovery from COVID-19 with targeted investments as part of its Fit for a Better World roadmap, Forestry Minister Stuart Nash said. “To drive New Zealand’s recovery, we launched the Fit for a Better World – Accelerating ...
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    7 days ago
  • Speech to He Whenua Taurikura – New Zealand’s annual hui on countering terrorism and violent...
    Check against delivery Can I begin by acknowledging the 51 shuhada, their families and the Muslim community. It is because of the atrocious violent act that was done to them which has led ultimately to this, the start of a dialogue and a conversation about how we as a nation ...
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    1 week ago
  • Cost of Government Southern Response proactive package released
    The Government has announced the proactive package for some Southern Response policyholders could cost $313 million if all those eligible apply. In December, the Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission, David Clark announced a proactive package for SRES claimants who settled their claims before October 2014. It trailed the judgment ...
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    1 week ago
  • First period products delivered to schools
    The first period products funded as part of the Government’s nationwide rollout are being delivered to schools and kura this week, as part of wider efforts to combat child poverty, help increase school attendance, and make a positive impact on children’s wellbeing. “We know that nearly 95,000 9-to-18 year olds ...
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    1 week ago
  • New support to reduce emissions from public building and construction projects
    Government agencies are getting new support to reduce carbon emissions generated by construction of new buildings, with the release of practical guidance to shape decisions on public projects. The Ministers for Building and Construction and for Economic Development say a new Procurement Guide will help government agencies, private sector suppliers, ...
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    1 week ago
  • He Whenua Taurikura: New Zealand’s first Hui on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism
    The Prime Minister has opened New Zealand’s first hui on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism, which is being held in Christchurch over the next two days. The hui delivers on one of the recommendations from the report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the terrorist attack on Christchurch masjidain ...
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    1 week ago
  • Speech to inaugural Countering Terrorism Hui
    E aku nui, e aku rahi, Te whaka-kanohi mai o rātou mā, Ru-ruku-tia i runga i te ngākau whakapono, Ru-ruku-tia i runga i te ngākau aroha, Waitaha, Ngāti Mamoe, Ngai Tahu, nāu rā te reo pohiri. Tena tātou katoa. Ki te kotahi te kakaho ka whati, ki te kapuia, e ...
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    1 week ago
  • Campaign shines a light on elder abuse
    A new campaign is shining a spotlight on elder abuse, and urging people to protect older New Zealanders. Launched on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the Office for Seniors’ campaign encourages friends, whānau and neighbours to look for the signs of abuse, which is often hidden in plain sight. “Research suggests ...
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    1 week ago
  • Farewelling sports administrator and philanthropist Sir Eion Edgar
    Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson today expressed his sorrow at the passing of Sir Eion Edgar – a leading sports administrator and celebrated philanthropist who has made a significant impact both within and beyond the sport sector. “Sir Eion’s energy, drive and generosity has been truly immense. He leaves ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government to apologise for Dawn Raids
    The Government will make a formal apology for the wrongs committed during the Dawn Raids of the 1970’s. Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration enforcement policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families. The raids to find, convict and deport overstayers ...
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    1 week ago
  • Humanitarian support for Bangladesh and Myanmar
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced that New Zealand is providing NZ $8.25 million in humanitarian assistance to support refugees and their host populations in Bangladesh and to support humanitarian need of internally displaced and conflict affected people in Myanmar.  “Nearly four years after 900,000 Rohingya crossed the border ...
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    1 week ago