What does the right have against Venezuela?

Written By: - Date published: 8:10 am, February 9th, 2019 - 131 comments
Categories: International, jacinda ardern, labour, national, Politics, Propaganda, Simon Bridges, spin, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

I have never understood the hatred that the right has for Venezuela.  The classic was yesterday when Simon Bridges said that Labour was planning to Venezuelaise the tertiary training system.

Yep that takes a lot of getting your head around. What is Labour proposing?

The background is that various Polytechnics have struggled, and over the past few years built up larger and larger deficits. The current Government has spent $100 million bailing out four polytechnics. And this is not a recent problem. It has been brewing for years.

And the causes of the problem are clear. From Jacinda’s state of the nation speech:

Over the last two years this Government has been forced to spend $100 million to bail out four polytechnics, and that is a pattern that started before we took office.

That is not the sign of a healthy and sustainable sector.

We need to move away from the cycle that sees course delivery at institutes boom when the economic cycle turns down and then dive when the economy improves, while on-the-job training providers face the opposite cycle.

Instead of our regional polytechnics and institutes of technology retrenching, cutting programmes, and closing campuses, we need them to expand their course delivery throughout the country.

We want a sector that meets the needs of our economy. But the current system faces three major structural issues we need to fix.

It is not well coordinated or integrated. It is not easy for business to engage with and it delivers variable results across the country.

We have a duplication of courses and lack of consistency across the sector.

Many of the institutes face an issue of scale and insufficient capital to grow and respond. All of this is unsustainable.

Here is our vision – I want the vocational training system to be the backbone of our productive economy, and of our regions. I want students and parents to proudly choose a career in the trades and I want businesses to have confidence that the system is flexible and preparing a workforce for the future of work.

Her analysis is complex and rational. And the need for change is clear.

But Jacinda’s announcement resulted in the most inane comment yet from Simon Bridges. And believe me there is a lot of competition.

From Radio New Zealand:

However, at National’s caucus retreat in Hamilton, Mr Bridges was telling reporters that plan would mean 1000 jobs will be lost.

“Abolishing them all, moving to four hubs, effectively a nationalisation, a Venezuela model.”

What does that mean? Is Bridges saying that Labour is going to nationalise the already nationalised Polytechnic institutes?

Are they going to be brought under state control from their former position of being, get this, under state control?

The Government is dealing with a long term problem with vocational problem.  And the last National Government is to blame. Not only did they preside over the system when it stalled and started to fail but some of their MPs were directly involved.

So what is the big deal about Venezuela?  I know that it is a democracy and although it has its issues at the last election it still elected its current leader as head of state.  I know the result is upsetting but I have major problems with the current POTUS but I am not advocating that he is removed by armed force or by someone who was not a presidential candidate saying that they are going to assume control.

The other guy, Juan Guaidó, did not contest the last election against sitting president Nicolás Maduro.  Perhaps he should have.  Then he would be in a better position to claim that he should be leader.

Venezuela has been a source of obsession to the right for many years.  I presume it is because their oil industry was nationalised many years ago.  Or because former leader Hugo Chavez used the income to lift many, many poor people out of poverty.

The claims that the country is undemocratic has been made for many years.  The Independent had this to say about recent elections shortly after the death of former leader Hugh Chavez:

Over the coming days, you will be repeatedly told that Hugo Chavez was a dictator. A funny sort of dictator: there have been 17 elections and referenda since 1998. Perhaps you think they were rigged. When he won by a huge margin in 2006, former US President Jimmy Carter was among those declaring he had won “fairly and squarely”.

At the last election in October 2012, Carter declared that, “of the 92 elections that we’ve monitored, I would say the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world.” I was there: perhaps you think I was like those hopelessly naïve Western leftists who visited Potemkin villages in Stalinist Russia.

I was with a genuinely independent election commission, staffed with both pro-Chavez and anti-Chavez sympathisers, who had previously been invited by the opposition to run their own internal elections. We met with senior opposition figures who railed against Chavez, but acknowledged that they lived in a democracy. When they lost the election, they accepted it.

Indeed, Chavez himself has had to accept defeat before: back in 2007, he lost a referendum campaign, and did not quibble with the results. Until he came to power, millions of poor Venezuelans were not even registered to vote: but dramatic registration drives have nearly doubled the electorate. There are 6,000 more polling stations than there were in the pre-Chavez era.

.And this fascinating collection of views shows why the right hated Chavez so much, and why the left liked him.  Alex Hearn at the New Statesman quoted Pamela Sampson, a business reporter for the Associated Press, as saying this:

Chavez invested Venezuela’s oil wealth into social programs including state-run food markets, cash benefits for poor families, free health clinics and education programs. But those gains were meager compared with the spectacular construction projects that oil riches spurred in glittering Middle Eastern cities, including the world’s tallest building in Dubai and plans for branches of the Louvre and Guggenheim museums in Abu Dhabi.

And Fair’s Jim Naureck, who pointed out the bizarre angle, said this in response:

That’s right: Chavez squandered his nation’s oil money on healthcare, education and nutrition when he could have been building the world’s tallest building or his own branch of the Louvre. What kind of monster has priorities like that?

So Bridges’ take on Tertiary Institute reform is lame, weird and totally misguided.  If he meant by the “Venezuelan” of the Polytechnic system  the addition of further resources then he is right.  If he meant the system is being nationalised then it already is.  But this attempt to construct a cold war narrative against clearly needed reforms is pretty strange.

131 comments on “What does the right have against Venezuela? ”

  1. adam 1

    Welcome to the new mccarthyism – as dumb and as stupid as last time – except this time you going to get way more violence.

  2. francesca 2

    Venezuela=socialism=failed state has now become a media constructed reality
    Most populations suffer from information deficit ,have been primed on Venezuela, so that when Bridges utters the word Venezuela , it gets all mixed up with toilet paper and Corbyn and possibly anti semitism and corruption!.. those filthy socialists ..and blood on the streets and oh! an unthinkable mess.
    Do we have a competent informed broadcaster who could pin Bridges down on this and expose his wilfull ignorance?

    • phil99 2.1

      Theres also the recent “socialists equal national socialist party” thus socialist equals nazi , from the right

  3. It’s just a general-purpose insult that appeals to the dimmer bulbs on the right – kind of like schoolkids calling things ‘gay’ back when my kids were at school.

  4. Adrian Thornton 4

    I am not quite sure why you would write this opening line…
    “I have never understood the hatred that the right has for Venezuela.”

    The right ( and ‘centrist’ liberals for that matter ) have always attacked ( and often violently) any and every deviation to the left from their ideology…Vietnam, Cuba, Chile, Iran spring straight to mind, give it a couple minutes more thought and list would be a long one…a very long one.

    No Left wing government that has sprung up since 1950 that I can think of, has been allowed to exist in it’s own space without some sort of serious pressure and meddling from the right.

    It is so common and out in the open that even the usually useless Washington Post had this one…
    ‘The long history of the U.S. interfering with elections elsewhere’
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2016/10/13/the-long-history-of-the-u-s-interfering-with-elections-elsewhere/?utm_term=.fe80568bd5f1

    • Morrissey 4.1

      New Zealand in 1985. It’s no coincidence that the Rainbow Warrior was bombed in New Zealand, which at that time was standing up to the U.S. and infuriating the likes of George Schulz and George H.W. Bush.

      • Adrian Thornton 4.1.1

        @Morrissey, Good point, hard to imagine that the Rainbow Warrior terrorist attack was conducted in a void.

        • Anne 4.1.1.1

          …hard to imagine that the Rainbow Warrior terrorist attack was conducted in a void.

          It wasn’t. That’s why Britain and the USA did not stand by NZ throughout that period. They were not directly implicated in the Rainbow Warrior bombing, but they turned ‘a blind eye’ to what was going on both beforehand and afterwards.

          You can’t tell me their respective intelligence agencies didn’t know France was planning something.

          And the NZSIS was not informed in advance.

          So much for the much touted matey closeness. Gone in a jiffy when it suits them.

          • halfcrown 4.1.1.1.1

            And don’t forget that other USA Puppet Australia, who at the time if my memory serves me correctly could have easily delayed, postponed, held up, arrest etc the bombers who got away on that yacht, but decided not to. No doubt on instructions from either Thatcher or America.

            • Anne 4.1.1.1.1.1

              ASIS had their agents in NZ for years halfcrown. They infiltrated the Labour Party in the 1970s and 80s. I knew two of them, but wasn’t aware at the time what they were doing or who they were working for. One of them at least was a NZer – not sure about the other one.

          • Adrian Thornton 4.1.1.1.2

            @Anne, Yeh that’s exactly what I meant.

        • patricia bremner 4.1.1.2

          Adrian, that triggered a memory…my Father’s attitude toThe French was they were unpredictable and volatile in their relations with other societies. They felt their tests did ‘no harm’ on Bikini Atoll in the Pacific. They felt entitled.
          I remember standing at the back door with my Dad. The sudden glow in the sky.
          He had previously picked everything from the garden and bottled and frozen the food. He and Mum had bought a large supply of powdered and condensed milk. They had ‘gone halves’ with my Aunt and Uncle in a beast, and had it prepared into cuts sausages mince and roasts for the freezer. He had iodine in the medicine cupboard. I realise now they must have been very afraid of fallout. Low voiced conversations and palpable fear went on for months. I heard the words ‘strontium 90’ and ‘half life’… So the event of the sinking of the Rainbow Warrior seemed part of that, just continued arrogance and use of might.

  5. Infused 6

    Let’s just start here https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-election-nationalizations/factbox-venezuelas-nationalizations-under-chavez-idUSBRE89701X20121008

    Let us know how that worked out. The current round of elections were illegal. Following the constitution it was correct to put the interim leader in

  6. Wayne 7

    It is pretty obvious why Venezuela is put up as the poster boy of failure.

    It has among the largest oil reserves in the world yet over the last decade has got progressively poorer. It is not as if Venezuela has been in a war, which might explain the failure. So it is a spectacular anomaly, the reverse of what should be the case. A unique global case!

    For instance no-one uses Vietnam as an example of failure. In contrast to Venezuela it has done quite well.

    It so happens that the period of Venezuelan failure coincides with the socialism of Chavez and Maduro, the latter being a spectacularly bad leader. Unless you think that Maduro is a success, which quite possibly many Standardnistas do.

    So Venezuela becomes the parable for taking success and turning it into failure.

    Obviously when Bridges is using Venezuela in respect of school reform, he doesn’t literally mean it. It is about the lesson of centralism/socialism as the marker of probable failure.

    Of course I don’t actually need to state any of the above, you already know why Venezuela is used as a reference point. But it clearly annoys you.

    • vto 7.2

      Wayne, you well know that Venezuela has been taken out by the US by way of financial war.

      As for Doofus Bridges, what a frikkin’ doofus.

      • Wayne 7.2.1

        vto

        Until a few weeks ago the sanctions were directed at individuals only, admittedly the top leadership. However, those types of sanctions don’t really impact on the overall economy.

        • vto 7.2.1.1

          rinse and repeat… sorry Wayne I no longer believe anything which comes out of conservatives mouths these days…. you lot have blown your cred

        • Stuart Munro 7.2.1.2

          If the US had kept their fingers out of the equation, Venezuela would have managed a level of state support comparable to Saudi – which manages many benefits for citizens including free education.

          It is a damning indictment of the US that they chose to destabilize the oil state that had a functioning democracy, and prop up the monarchy which resists it.
          Not a consideration for hard right plutocrats like Wayne of course.

          • Dennis Frank 7.2.1.2.1

            Stuart, I just can’t see why you blame the USA. Their historical agenda of empire & exploitation, I presume. No arguing about that – the testimony of John Perkins as operator of that policy suffices on it’s own to establish that agenda, and the various coups produced by it provide supportive evidence.

            I even agree the Trump regime would like to replicate the process, but I cannot see how they can obtain sufficient leverage to succeed. I have no idea why Chavez & Maduro retained the US as the most-favoured trading partner of Venezuela – can you explain that?? It makes it seem to impartial observers as if the stalinists are deeply in league with the capitalists. Yet commentators onsite here seem to believe they are enemies.

            Also, can you explain why Russia and China are not providing food aid or money to the starving poor in Venezuela? I asked apologists for the regime here but got no response (other than someone suggesting that their funding help was going to the regime).

            • Stuart Munro 7.2.1.2.1.1

              As with many south American countries, US political interference in Venezuela is longstanding. The elites the pretender president represents resemble the Cuban exiles, or the Iraqi pretenders who meant to profit by the US invasion.

              This partially armed quasi-insurrection has been going on for decades, and, were Venezuela’s socialist leaders the tyrants the RWNJ are wont to paint them, would long since have seen them all purged.

              America’s voice has been raised against Venezuela for a long time – but it hasn’t tendered much in the way of aid – apparently because they mean to profit from overthrowing the current regime, which aid would tend to stabilize.

              Neither Russia nor China are big on humanitarian aid, they are more likely to kibbitz than to do anything substantive to support Venezuelans.

              • Dennis Frank

                I don’t disagree with any of that. I reported a poll recently (here) that had both sides with minimal roughly similar public support, because the vast were disillusioned with both. It was from an ngo in Venezuela.

                I’ve been citing their parliament’s usage of Guaido as leader as being evidence of authenticity. As long as the regime continues to control their electoral commission and supreme court, free and fair elections will be impossible. Stalinist creation of an alternative assembly as pseudo-parliament fools pro-stalinist observers, but nobody else. I’m aware their rationale may be that the authentic parliament is controlled by a pro-USA class of domestic capitalists – paranoia is understandable.

                Kiwis ought to acknowledge the political reality within as much as possible. Framing one side as evil and the other is good merely reduces discourse to banality.

                • Stuart Munro

                  For the moment at least the US backed aggressors have not achieved control. The realpolitik momentarily lies with the existing government. I don’t expect that to last, and in time the puppet may achieve de facto rule. Until that happens however, I see no need to grant him the semblance of a legitimacy he has not earned..

                • mikesh

                  Venezuela already has free and fair elections. I don’t think anybody is prevented from voting. If parties are banned it will probably be because they are US stooges.

                  • Dennis Frank

                    The reason you’re wrong: when Maduro was defeated in the election before last, their electoral commission ruled enough opposition winners invalid to overturn the result. That’s why the opposition refused to stand candidates in the last election.

                    The equivalent procedure in this country: John Key’s govt replaced any members of our electoral commission who were pro-Labour, then after the 2016 election our electoral commission ruled enough successful Labour candidates invalid to overturn the result, ensuring National got a 4th term in government.

                    You’d be calling it a free and fair election. People would be laughing at you.

    • Funny how the countries with US sanctions against them have such disastrous economies, isn’t it?

      • Cuba has struggled for 60 years having had a US led worldwide embargo placed on it, since 1959. Cuba was originally a Spanish Colony until the USA annexed it at the turn of last Century. The USA were are bit pissed off when Castro took it back for the Cuban people in 1959, and ousted the dreaded Baptista Regime.

    • Incognito 7.4

      Obviously when Bridges is using Venezuela in respect of school reform, he doesn’t literally mean it. It is about the lesson of centralism/socialism as the marker of probable failure. [My bolds]

      Indeed, Simon is simply wielding National’s preferred political weapon of demagoguery: his much-beloved dog-whistle. Did he find it in Sir John’s top drawer by any chance?

    • KJT 7.5

      https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/02/08/venezuela-myth-keeping-us-transforming-our-economy

      The fact is, despite the endemic corruption, a legacy from previous right wing Governments, US economic warfare, dollar debt repayments, and repeated attempts to destabilise the country, Venezuela became dangerously close to that anathema of the USA. Getting away from the US dollar and showing the benefits of poverty reduction, education and fairness.

      The USA could not afford to let Venezuela succeed.

      Meanwhile, corruption, economic failure, repression, political violence and serious human rights violations, in actual dictatorships, are ignored.

      Many right wing dictatorships have been, or are in much worse state than Venezuela. But we never hear about them.
      http://kjt-kt.blogspot.co.nz/2011/10/kia-ora-this-dictator-of-oil-rich.html

    • Cinny 7.6

      Wayne, am yet to see anyone on TS backing Maduro, so stop spinning shite.

      Better yet go through all the comments on TS about Maduro and find one person on here that backs him.

    • mickysavage 7.7

      Wayne

      Obviously when Bridges is using Venezuela in respect of school reform, he doesn’t literally mean it. It is about the lesson of centralism/socialism as the marker of probable failure.

      Can you explain how the reforms are examples of centrism or socialism?

  7. Stunned Mullet 8

    Simon comes across as a munter in his many uttering not sure why that surprises anyone anymore.

    ‘Her analysis is complex and rational.’

    Ummm it’s certainly not complex and whether it’s rational is up for debate.

    ‘And the need for change is clear.’

    yup

    As for what does the right have against Venezuela, well it’s not just the right that see it as a failed state and general basket case most on the centre and left do as well.

    However, I’m sure the many venezuelans suffering in their country and those that have already left are very thankful for the chardonnay swilling intelligentsia sitting in their comfy houses in NZ sticking up for the governments that put the country in its current mess.

  8. Andre 9

    Why does the right keep bringing up Venezuela?

    Because it’s an easy way to bait loonier lefties into bizarre denials and apologia for the screwups and venality of the Chavez and Maduro regimes. Which the RWNJs fondly imagine will lead to the discrediting of all leftie values and ideas.

    • RedLogix 9.1

      Nicely put. Maduro set about his revolutionary socialism with a spectacular incompetence, dismantling the very industries he dependended on.

      It’s a complex story with many actors, but this economic failure is central to the plot.

    • Adrian Thornton 9.2

      @Andre…You are wrong as usual.

      …..”to bait loonier lefties into bizarre denials and apologia for the screwups and venality of the Chavez and Maduro regime”

      It is you (+RedLogix) and your great friends in MSM who are the apologist nutters for Western imperialism, and of course never acknowledging the long and factual history of meddling, violent subversion, and outright intervention in the Socialist project in Venezuela by the worlds most powerful and influential country and all it’s proxies…and now all of a sudden you idiots spouting on about a failed state like it’s has happened in a void of outside influence…FFS are you really that devoid of critical thinking?

      The History – and Hypocrisy – of US Meddling in Venezuela
      https://www.globalresearch.ca/the-history-and-hypocrisy-of-us-meddling-in-venezuela/5666891

      The United States’ Hand in Undermining Democracy in Venezuela
      https://nacla.org/news/2018/05/18/united-states%E2%80%99-hand-undermining-democracy-venezuela

      • Andre 9.2.1

        Sure, fuckery by the US has contributed plenty to the distress Venezuela is currently experiencing. If I were ever in the mood for mud-wrestling with gimps somewhere like Kiwibog on a topic like “why do lefties hate the US?”, US shitting on Venezuela and the rest of Latin America, indeed the rest of the world, would supply endless ammunition.

        But right here, right now, a leftie has asked the question “what does the right have against Venezuela?” on a leftie blog. So I’ve chosen an aspect of the issue many lefties are least likely to be aware of for my response.

  9. Morrissey 10

    Meanwhile, that sad joke Justin “Blair” Trudeau tries hard to win favour with Trump….

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/02/06/bloody-canada-cheerleading-the-lima-groups-plot-to-overthrow-the-government-of-venezuela/

  10. JustMe 11

    I wonder how many of us here in NZ are now so fed up to the back teeth with the constant scare-mongering of a political party called National who are still sore from losing the 2017 general election?

    I am getting so tired of hearing Bridges comments and the equally stupid comments from his colleagues.

    I am also very much fed up with the constant adulation such National Party supporting ‘journalists’ like Mike Hosking, Katie Hawkesby, Audrey Young and so many others in the main stream NZ media heap upon a failed political party like National.

    Such media tabloids like the NZ Herald has lost my readership because it has articles praising National whilst badgering the current government. Even the MKH duo as I call Mike and Katie Hosking seem to have answers for everything which gives me the impression their immediate neighbours at Matakana must surely be John Key as he always had an answer for EVERYTHING even when it was just dribble that came from his mouth.

    National will always support America. They(National)will never stand up to America and say “No we don’t agree with you on that matter…” And so National will always blame everyone else but themselves and of course John Key’s beloved America.

    Simon Bridges using Venezuela as being reason to condemn something shows that in all reality National don’t have anything else when it comes to policies. National and Bridges are ‘far too busy’ with fault finding rather than thinking creatively and in the best interest of NZ and NZers.

    • Wayne 11.1

      Hey JustMe,

      Pretty sure that Simon Bridges won’t shut up just to please you.

      And if you want to defend Twyford and his spectacular Kiwibuild failure, go right ahead.

      It is surely hardly a surprise that the Kiwibuild failure is constantly referred to by National and in the media.

      It has got to be just about the worst government failure I have ever seen from any New Zealand government.

      • Sabine 11.1.1

        it would be nice if he could finally utter something that would actually benefit the country, and no i am not talking about ‘tax cuts’ that have to be offset by spending resulting in abstract poverty for those that the No Mates Party don’t care about.

        Kiwi build right now might be a failure, but frankly selling of state houses, closing schools, underfunding teachers, deregulating early childhood care / education, selling of state assets despite the opposition of New Zealanders underfunding health care, underfunding mental healthcare, defunding anything to do with sexual assualt and the likes has been a greater failure.

        Unless of course you consider children living with their parents in a van/combi parked next to a public toilet in a park success. Which you probably do so as long as you get your tax cuts and your perks? Right?

        So next when you see 10 Bridges Simon ask him to actually rethink which country he wants to run. Cause the only thing so far he is doing is running around like a headless chicken squawking, yet he does nothing to address the issues that we have right now, and will have in the future.
        but maybe you don’t care about the future, as Bush the second so pointedly said once to the question as to who History will judge him:”History? I will be dead then”.

      • vto 11.1.2

        Sorry Wayne, re housing and Kiwibuild, the most monumental failure by recent governments was clearly your lot in failing to ensure all the people in your community had a safe, warm house to sleep in each night…

        … your great chief Key had his mansion on the hill while the poor villagers who cleaned his mansion and did his gardens had nowhere to sleep.

        Your lot should be ashamed of themselves… can’t and wont house the villagers

        • Anne 11.1.2.1

          Nice response vto.

          It has got to be just about the worst government failure I have ever seen from any New Zealand government.

          Damm right Wayne. The Key/English government should hang their heads in shame at the appalling way they neglected the housing needs of this country during their time in office. They should have been prosecuted for criminal negligence.

          • Stuart Munro 11.1.2.1.1

            When you get as shameless a bunch of rogues as the Key Kleptocracy, who will not hang their heads in in shame, sometimes the public is obliged to hang them for them.

        • Cricklewood 11.1.2.2

          Um paid his gardeners pretty damn well actually…cleaners to i’d imagine. Hes not silly.

      • One Two 11.1.3

        It has got to be just about the worst government failure I have ever seen from any New Zealand government

        The thing about subjective views is that they are subject to variables including prejudice and other form of bias.

        Your comment is also laced with a level of incorrectness which, given your documented history, wayne…is either arrogance or dementia setting in…

        Perhaps it is just a good old fashioned lie…eh…

        Like selling off housing stock, creating various disasters in ChCh, selling taxpayer assets and growing poverty, inequality and the country’s debt at unprecedented pace…as recently as from 2008-2017…

      • Incognito 11.1.4

        It has got to be just about the worst government failure I have ever seen from any New Zealand government.

        This has got to be just about the best example of confirmation bias and selective memory I have ever seen from any (former) National MP.

      • KJT 11.1.5

        Sorry Wayne. The spectacular failure to address New Zealands housing issues is entirely on National.

        While I think Labour should have put the dollars into State rentals rather than Kiwibuild, the hypocrisy from a member of National is breath taking.

        Labour has added a magnitude more, net houses, to the supply in a year, than National has done in ten.

        • Dennis Frank 11.1.5.1

          Yeah, as far as I can tell the current score is coalition 47, National 0. Nats ought to have put some runs on the board while in govt, they wouldn’t be looking so inept now if they had. Twyford’s inadequacies stand revealed, but he’s not naked and National lacks even a fig-leaf…

          • KJT 11.1.5.1.1

            Don’t forget to subtract from National’s score all the State houses they removed, which makes it more like Nationa,l minus several thousand.

      • Blazer 11.1.6

        Compared to..Key in 2007..

        It wasn’t so long ago, in the 1990s, in fact, that New Zealand had a high level of home ownership compared to other countries. Not so anymore. We now have what has been described as the second worst housing affordability problem in the world.

        Make no mistake; this problem has got worse in recent years. Home ownership declined by 5% between the 2001 and 2006 census to just 62.7%. To put that into context, home ownership for the preceding five years had been stable at 67.4%.

        If you dig down into those numbers a little deeper, some worrying facts emerge. The share of homes owned by people aged 20 to 40 dropped significantly between 2001 and 2006. Young people – the people we most want to prevent joining the great Kiwi brain-drain – are really struggling to get onto the property ladder.

        This decline shows no signs of slowing. In fact, on current trends, the crisis will only deepen. Home ownership rates are predicted to plummet to 60% within the next decade. And one of the biggest factors influencing home-ownership rates over the next 10 years will be the difficulty young buyers will have getting into their first home.

        This problem won’t be solved by knee-jerk, quick-fix plans. And it won’t be curbed with one or two government-sponsored building developments.

        Instead, we need government leadership that is prepared to focus on the fundamental issues driving the crisis. National is ready to provide that leadership. Earlier this month I announced our four-point plan for improving home affordability:

        Ensuring people are in a better financial position to afford a house.
        Freeing up the supply of land.
        Dealing with the compliance issues that drive up building costs.
        Allowing state house tenants to buy the houses they live in

        from..https://www.nzpif.org.nz/news/view/53038 =spectacular FAIL.

        • KJT 11.1.6.1

          National ignoring the real solutions, again!

          To stop the housing crisis we already know what is needed.
          CGT.
          Reduce immigration.
          Ban offshore ownership of land.
          Build 100 000 State houses.
          Stop the banks risk free return on mortgages.

          National first denied the problem. Now they promise ‘solutions’ which have already proven not to work.
          Just like National’s other ‘solutions’.

      • Gabby 11.1.7

        Twyford’s faith in the building industry and local government to cease their ticket clipping out of the kindness of their hearts was touchingly starry eyed. His solicitude for poor deprived not yet millionaire professionals was praxically saintlike. Maybe now he’ll start hiring actual builders, for wags like, none of that contractor stuff, and get some state houses built.

      • Stuart Munro 11.1.8

        A crowning fatuous lie Wayne!

        What about the utterly useless Nick Smith, Wayne, who malingered in the housing portfolio for nearly a decade, achieving less in that time even than Twyford’s lamentable performance!

        That has been the worst failure you’ve seen from any New Zealand government, but you are too fundamentally dishonest to admit it.

      • patricia bremner 11.1.9

        I think you are forgetting a shipment of live sheep to an Arab gentleman for his ‘farm’, and how that experiment was an abject failure when the sheep all died.
        Further there was NO I repeat NO advantage to the people of NZ at all Wayne, it was a diabolical failure on every level.. Just one of many between 2008-2017

        At least Phil was building homes for Kiwis and the lessons have been learned and the path forward planned to still achieve the original goal

        Now Wayne, excuses and lies were offered up about the sheep and why they had been sent… that WAS a monumental cock-up.

  11. Dennis Frank 12

    I was a supporter of Chavez for many years. It was very disappointing that power corrupted him eventually. It’s also disappointing that you haven’t read the evidence posted here that the current regime is corrupt.

    I agree with you re the Nat leader’s banality, but he can’t help being born as himself. His figure of speech seems to be intended to imply a mickey-mouse plan is being promoted by Ardern – reading too much into it. She deliberately refrained from providing much of a clue about any coalition plan. Vague intent suffices, apparently.

    Polytechs are in financial trouble due to operating costs not being paid for by student fees, I presume. Neither leader bothered to get to that point – why not? Isn’t the solution to replace incompetent management, or import more rich foreign students?

    • Incognito 12.1

      Polytechs are in financial trouble due to operating costs not being paid for by student fees, I presume. Neither leader bothered to get to that point – why not? Isn’t the solution to replace incompetent management, or import more rich foreign students?

      It was partly addressed in the OP; the polytechs need to break away from the boom-bust cycle. How is the question.

      • Dennis Frank 12.1.1

        Well, one presumes a function of leadership is explaining how. If she doesn’t know, she ought to be explaining how the govt intends to figure it out. If it is merely an admin problem, she ought to say so. If the model is flawed, she ought to say so.

        I can’t see how she, or the coalition, expects to gain any political traction by bombarding the situation with descriptors. It sounds like they want to consolidate the sector due to perception of market failure: too many service providers, too few customers. If the analysis is correct and the leak re four regional hubs likewise, but they haven’t yet got consensus on that, why even talk about it?

        I presume she feels consensus is likely and that’s a sufficient basis to proceed upon – but if so, why does she lack the courage to say so?? Announcing a course correction serves to alert the passengers that the captain has a new goal and a plan to get there. It gives people confidence in the government. Such leadership is desirable. Using only aspirational language about what she wants is campaign-speak – when she ought to be performing a governance function.

        • Incognito 12.1.1.1

          If the model is flawed, she ought to say so.

          She did.

          If the analysis is correct and the leak re four regional hubs likewise, but they haven’t yet got consensus on that, why even talk about it?

          Who are doing the talking? Anyway, can we only talk about things when we’ve got consensus or when we’ve got all the answers? I like the sound of silence 😉

          One thing that the PM is doing really well is giving speeches …

          • Dennis Frank 12.1.1.1.1

            She didn’t make it explicit. If the problem was the neoliberal model, then the Clark govt became complicit in that, didn’t it? Appropriate leadership would acknowledge such Labour complicity. She failed.

            Honesty about past mistakes is neither difficult nor politically problematic. People would respect her for it. I still support her, on balance, but pointing out inadequacies is part of how negative feedback creates corrective process.

            Remember we’re still waiting for her to declare an alternative to neoliberalism. Do you believe she will never do so? If so, why not admit she’s part of the problem, pretending to be part of the solution? That ain’t honest!

            • Incognito 12.1.1.1.1.1

              Whoa! Slow down, Dennis, one step at a time! You’re jumping higher and faster than John Carter on Mars.

              • Dennis Frank

                Yeah, make haste slowly, so as not to leave folks behind. Patience is a virtue, etc. However multiple folks here have already complained about her lack of signalling a positive alternative to the prevalent paradigm. I’m just demonstrating solidarity with that crowd.

                As regards JC, Warlord of Barsoom, very much an adolescent role model for me (after my childhood trip through the Tarzan series in the fifties). 😎

                • Incognito

                  It hadn’t occurred to me that you and JC were acquainted but you and the Lord of the Jungle, yeah, that doesn’t surprise me 😉

                  Nothing wrong with crowd solidarity but for a moment you started to look like a banner-waving megaphone-shouting crowd-organising front-leading activist attacking the Establishment 😉

                  We can’t have any of that kind of naive ignorant behaviour here on TS …

                  • Dennis Frank

                    What, me a rabble-rouser? Not my style. But I acknowledge the formative influence of heroic opposition to evil that young males are traditionally brain-washed with. Transcending that and seeing good in those doing bad things later becomes an essential praxis…

                    • Incognito

                      Good vs bad/evil, Left vs. Right, etc., we just love our binaries and dualism, don’t we?

                    • Dennis Frank

                      Could be a topic for how to get there tomorrow, eh?

                    • Incognito

                      Hmmm, how do we get from here & now to there & then? Does it require a special kind of praxis? Praxis is a process yet it only takes place in the here & now. Once we transcend this space-time dualism we’re ‘here’ and ‘there’ and ‘everywhere’ all at the same time, we are. Obviously, I’m only at the bottom rung of the spiritual ladder, so to speak, and still grounded in dualism.

    • Gabby 12.2

      Possibly polytechs should be forbidden to offer degree courses and stick to praxical subjects franxie. No more university lecturer salaries. Big chunk off the budget.

      • Dennis Frank 12.2.1

        Yeah that sounds sensible. Coalition ought to get employer advice in making the changes. The global trend is towards job elimination by technology, so govts must adapt to it. Polytechs ought to focus on tech employment provision.

        • Gabby 12.2.1.1

          Well I’m guessing employers would like polytechs to turn out experienced tradies at no expense to them.

          • Dennis Frank 12.2.1.1.1

            That points to a crucial design element. When I was young, tradesmen learnt on the job. Apprentice employment costs were part of running a business. All businesses ought to pay their operating costs.

            Socialism in the sixties provided general education, tax-payer funded. Some elementary trade-skills were included. I recall having wood-work and metal-work classes separately. I think that was at intermediate school.

            I guess nowadays the market rationale has been applied to polytechs & they teach whatever sufficient students sign up to learn. Failure of that model due to insufficient management planning in relation to market signalling can’t really be seen as a government responsibility in the neoliberal framework. By staking a claim to taking responsibility for the shambles, the PM seems to be signalling in a tacit way that the coalition wants to be more socialist…

          • Siobhan 12.2.1.1.2

            I know a young person doing an intro to electronics course at our local Polytech, it’s described as a one year full time course, the idea being people straight from school can then go on and find an apprenticeship.

            The truth is it has scheduled lessons for 3 days a week, 5 hours a day. Some days cancelled while students ‘catch up’ or resit exams. The supposed ‘full time’ aspect comes from the students doing homework and self initiated study. The actual course length is nine months.

            I figure most of the class could have achieved the course requirements in 3 months without breaking into a sweat.

            And for this the poor suckers are using up their Fee Free year of study.

            All I’m saying is, there are going to be some very disappointed tradies out there.

            • KJT 12.2.1.1.2.1

              Bums on seats!
              Even worse is education as an immigration scam.
              Probably the majority of foreign students.
              Tertiary providers make a fortune, while we get to pay for the pensions, housing and health care for the students extended family, after they gain residency.
              Tertiary providers even advertise it as a path to residency in China, India and elsewhere.

          • KJT 12.2.1.1.3

            I wish. In fact they finish polytechnic with almost no practical skills whatever.

            But a return to a proper apprenticeship system, would be much better.
            Apprentices are tied to the employer, sure. But the employer is also strongly motivated to bring them up to a high level of skill as fast as possible, so they can start making back some of the costs of training. Worked fine for hundreds of years. Until the neo-liberals wanted to dick with it. Like so many other things.

    • KJT 12.3

      Did it.

      Perceptions of corruption from the US media seem to be rather one eyed, to say the least.

      The US Government, and indeed our own National party, after recent revelations on how much an MP costs, are as “corrupt” as Chavez. In fact they are even more in corporate pockets.

      Maduro doesn’t appear very competent. I wonder if anyone would, in the face of determined ruthless attempts to de-stabilise his Government.
      The other allegations have been applied by the US to every socialist leader, since Allende.

      Meanwhile, Indonesia, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Israel and other corrupt and genocidal Governments, are apparently OK. Often supported by US aid.

      • Gabby 12.3.1

        If he hired blackwater to deal with the opposition, why, he’d be as right as rain. You can be a genocidal murdering thug as long as you don’t cut yankistan out of the action.

    • KJT 12.4

      Right wing, follow the money, “competitive” bums on seats managerialism is destroying polytechnics.

      Who would have thought it

      • greywarshark 12.4.1

        What an interesting thread with so many allusions. Keeps us all sparking merrily.

  12. Puckish Rogue 13

    Simon Bridges really is getting under the lefts skin isn’t he, he’s already the first Maori leader of a major political party maybe he might just be the first Maori PM as well…

    Also where’s Gosman, thought this would be right up his alley 🙂

    • Andre 13.1

      If Gosman’s taking the day off, he’s going to be gutted when he comes back and sees what he’s missed.

    • Incognito 13.2

      I can’t keep a straight face every time I hear and see Simon struggling to play his dog-whistle and barking at every car. All he’s achieving is a poor parody of the Yazoo Kid; at least he can play an instrument and has friends!

      • Incognito 13.2.1

        Blast! I meant the Kazoo Kid. For some reason I typed the name of my favourite 80s band 😉

    • Gabby 13.3

      Slick’s getting under the left’s shoe puckers. Scrape him off! Scrape him off!

    • Grant 13.4

      Too many free drinks at work yesterday.

    • Robert Guyton 13.5

      Gosman has an alley?

    • Robert Guyton 13.6

      The “Left” has a skin ?

      • Puckish Rogue 13.6.1

        A thin skin by all accounts 😉

        • Incognito 13.6.1.1

          Low sub-cutaneous fat is healthy and attractive.

          • Puckish Rogue 13.6.1.1.1

            Well that’s just plain fatist

            • Incognito 13.6.1.1.1.1

              To appease you, high sub-cutaneous fat is unhealthy but can be attractive. However, it is all context dependent; babies have high sub-cutaneous fat and are usually (but not always) very attractive. Anyway, it’s in the eye of the beholder.

  13. rata 14

    Simon bridges is no more Maori than Winston Peters
    Shane Jones, Paula Bennett or Ben Couch who are/were as white
    as it is possible to be brown.
    None were elected because of their Maoriness but because
    of their perceived lack of Maoriness by the white voters of the National party.
    The potato, brown on the outside white on the inside comes to mind.
    National is the white peoples party with fake token potatoes
    and the left should remind the public of this regularly.

  14. Gosman 15

    T’is a lovely day indeed out there.

    I will point out that I find it laughsble that Mickey Savage thinks Maduro’s election was in any way democratic. It has been widely condemned as not free and fair and his swearing in for his new term wss unconstitutional. His Presidency is therefore illegal.

    MS have a view of this clip of Ken Livingstone essentially doing what you are doing.

    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://m.youtube.com/watch%3Fv%3DAUG2gZGTSmU&ved=2ahUKEwiqo4nvnK3gAhWBrY8KHf-HAdoQjjgwBnoECAoQAQ&usg=AOvVaw2HAlIFsm_gAJZaw2Plpo0C

    • Barfly 15.1

      Your wrong btw regarding the swearing in but I’m sure that’s of no importance to you

      • Gosman 15.1.1

        How am I wrong?

        • barfly 15.1.1.1

          Article 233 Venezuelan constitution ….to the effect that (I’m paraphrasing)

          “If for any reason the president cannot be sworn in at the National Assembly
          they may be sworn in by the Venezuelan Supreme Court” which is where Maduro was sworn in. Game , set and match Gossy.

          • David Mac 15.1.1.1.1

            Are those sitting on the Supreme Court bench appointed by Maduro or his people? If so…I’d be lying if I didn’t say ‘I smell a rat’.

            “I’m a fantastic bloke, I’d like to offer proof in the form of this testimonial written by my Mum.”

          • Gosman 15.1.1.1.2

            There was nothing stopping him getting sworn in at the National Assembly

            • barfly 15.1.1.1.2.1

              apparently there were a significant number of illegalities relating to the election of individuals in the National Assembly hence the use of the Supreme Court

              CUE DENIAL AND TEETH -GNASHING

              sorry Gossy u r the weakest link

            • mikesh 15.1.1.1.2.2

              The pretender, Guaido, was not elected, and in any case Venezuela already has a properly elected president.

          • patricia bremner 15.1.1.1.3

            Well done Barfly I did enjoy that vicariously xx

    • mikesh 15.2

      Banning political parties does not invalidate elections, though of course he would need to have good reasons for doing so. Promotion of his own political advantage would not be enough; election of the banned parties would have to be in some way inimical to the safety of the state. Hopefully when the next election rolls around we will find out if the electorate at large agrees with his analysis.

      We would probably have nothing to fear from the Mafia or the Ku Klux Klan forming political parties here, since no-one would vote for them, but in Venezuela the situation could be somewhat different.

      • KJT 15.2.1

        I suspect that any political party which participated in an armed attempt at a coup, here, would be banned, also

        • mikesh 15.2.1.1

          I understand Guaido is a protegee of the guy who led the CIA backed 3 day coup in the early 2000s. I think his name was Jose Mendoza (though I could be wrong).

          The election was democratic to the extent that nobody was prevented from voting.

  15. rata 16

    Polytechs like Universities and indeed most educational institutions
    are on the way out as the digital age really kicks in.
    Learning online will see 95% of students of all ages learning from home
    with 2-3 week block courses in local or regional hubs
    for socialization or practical work requiring equipment.
    Some courses will need more practical but overall
    it’s home based digital all the way from now on in.
    So of course downsizing will happen every where.
    Parliament should be the next to down size.
    Halve the MP numbers and their hangers on
    and halve their salary and retirement perkies.
    A very close raft of cut backs of Government fat is long over due.
    Venezuelan ?
    No give them a Brazilian 🙂

    • KJT 16.1

      You know the percentage of students that can cope with online learning?

    • patricia bremner 16.2

      Rata you don’t get good people applying if you offer peanuts.
      “A Brazillian?”You want them to wear bikinis? The mind boggles.
      I mean Soiman stood during the challenge at Waitangi looking pugnacious and aggressive. Imagine a bikini.. No oh No!!

  16. David Mac 17

    We’re screaming out for concreters, electricians, roofers, hammer hands, plumbers, digger drivers etc. Our Polytech facilities should be better aligned with our needs.

    From the 2nd year on I think Polytech students could be honing their skills within the Kiwibild framework. I think there is a synergy to someone gaining free trade qualifications whilst helping to build state houses on the min wage.

    95% of us can’t name 5 MPs. 95% of us have a passing interest in politics but live essentially in blissful ignorance. To get cut through with the populace a politician must have a message no longer than a bumper sticker.

    This is why Bridges appears to be dumbing his comments down to: “It’s Venezuelaesque” It’s because it gets cut through, traction.

    It works both ways, I think one of Jacinda’s best known positions on a subject would be re: climate change ‘It’s our generation’s nuclear moment’ A bumper sticker speech that stuck.

    • Kat 17.1

      This govt needs to stop pussy footing around the topic and reinstate the Ministry of Works, 21st century style. Reinstating apprenticeships that are full time with the appropriate mixture of theory and real time work being mandatory. The private sector is not capable nor has the capacity of creating the numbers needed, let alone Polytechs. People need to be aware that most of the skills, design, engineering, construction that built this country’s infrastructure came out of the original MOW.

      Here’s a bumper sticker: MOW……NOW

      • David Mac 17.1.1

        Ha, yeah Kat. That’s a bumper sticker: MOW NOW…it gives me a twinge of guilt re: the current state of my lawn.

        I think your thoughts could be chronologically tracked. The wheels seemed to fall off the preparing people for their careers objective around about the same time the men who found work in the private sector after the MOW was disbanded, retired.

        We left the job to employers with little skin in the education game and educators focused on getting bums on seats, any bum. Vice chancellors chanting ‘show me the money’.

        • Kat 17.1.1.1

          Yes David, MOW NOW, but maybe not in tinder dry places like Nelson.

          The govt has every incentive to create a new MOW/SOE to drive the likes of Kiwibuild, modernising of the Rail system and other major infrastructure projects of national strategic and economic importance. Trouble is they just don’t have a big enough mandate this term to give it a go and are very wary of political backlash.

          Thats why the likes of Bridges mindless expedient barking away, including the negative commentary in the herald, at every move the govt makes puts the proverbial handbrake on public support.

      • Like +100% MOW… NOW

        Developing a NEW MOW is a NO BRAINER IMHO

  17. Morrissey 18

    In Venezuela, White Supremacy is a Key to Trump’s Coup
    by Greg Palast for Truthout. Feb. 8, 2019

    On January 23, right after a phone call from Donald Trump, Juan Guaidó, former speaker of Venezuela’s National Assembly, declared himself president. No voting. When you have official recognition from The Donald, who needs elections?

    Say what?

    I can explain what’s going on in Venezuela in three photos:

    First, we have Juan Guaidó, self-proclaimed (and Trump-proclaimed) president of the nation, with his wife and child, a photo prominently placed in The New York Times…..

    …..

    This is the story of Venezuela in black and white, the story not told in The New York Times nor the rest of our establishment media. This year’s so-called popular uprising is, at its heart, a furious backlash of the whiter (and wealthier) Venezuelans against their replacement by the larger Mestizo (mixed-race) poor.

    Four centuries of white supremacy in Venezuela by those who identify their ancestors as European came to an end with the 1998 election of Hugo Chavez who won with the overwhelming support of the Mestizo majority. This turn away from white supremacy continues under Maduro, Chavez’ chosen successor.

    In my interviews with Chavez for BBC beginning in 2002, he talked with humor about the fury of a white ruling class finding itself displaced by dark-skinned man who was so visibly “Negro e Indio,” a label he wore loudly and proudly.

    Why did the poor love Chavez? (And love is not too strong a word.) As even the US CIA’s surprisingly honest Fact Book states:

    “Social investment in Venezuela during the Chavez administration reduced poverty from nearly 50% in 1999 to about 27% in 2011, increased school enrollment, substantially decreased infant and child mortality, and improved access to potable water and sanitation through social investment.”

    What should be added is that, even more than the USA, race and poverty are linked.

    But just as Maduro took office in 2013, the price of oil began its collapse, and the vast social programs that oil paid for were now paid for by borrowing money and printing it, causing wild inflation. The economic slide is now made impossibly worse by what the UN rapporteur for Venezuela compared to “medieval sieges.” The Trump administration cut off Venezuela from the oil sale proceeds from its biggest customer, the USA.

    Everyone has been hurt economically, but the privileged class’s bank accounts have become nearly worthless. So, knowing that the Mestizo majority would not elect their Great White Hope Guidó, the angry white rich simply took to the streets — often armed. (And yes, both sides are armed.)

    I’ve seen this movie before. When I look at today’s news reports of massive demonstrations against the so-called “dictatorship” of Venezuela’s left government, it looks awfully like 2002, when I was first in Caracas reporting for BBC Television. ….

    Read more…
    https://www.gregpalast.com/in-venezuela-white-supremacy-is-a-key-to-trump-coup/

  18. Morrissey 19

    National MP Barbara Kuriger’s lamentable lack of knowledge about the Billenglishing going on at Taratahi Agricultural Training College was commented on way back in 2015…

    https://morrisseybreen.blogspot.com/2018/01/barbara-kuriger-mp-was-on-board-of.html

  19. David Mac 20

    When being a mate of the President is a ticket to becoming an overnight multi-millionaire (in US money of course, not the currency with their selfies on it.) the problems are bigger than Uncle Sam sticking his oar in.

    I think Venezuela is the perfect storm of a number of influences. US shenanigans. Big $ for those at the top, bribes/corruption all the way down to council car-park attendants… who can blame them when a Big Mac is half a week’s wages and a tumbling global oil price.

    Through my eyes, all these influences play a part. I think most rational people would agree. The bone of contention seems to arise when determining what influences are most to blame.

  20. David Mac 21

    There’s a broken neon sign over the front door into Venezuela. It used to say ‘Socialism’ now it winks ‘ism’.

    If you want to check out socialism and oil money check out Norway. Trillions in their State pension fund. Everyone grows old with dignity in Norway.

  21. Ad 22

    Ardern’s Polytech reforms propose a kind of regionalism also proposed for secondary education (in Hipkins’ “hubs”), also proposed for water (in amalgamating reticulated public waters suppliers), but hardly working for a decade in health (in District Health Boards), and also failing spatially (in regional local government).

    They just can’t name the fact that it’s a country small enough to require specific kinds of trades to be supplied when the economy requires them, which in turn requires a bit of central planning.

    Unlike our universities, there is no need to be a particular “critic and conscience of society”. As the Prime Minister notes, Polytechs are skill suppliers into the economy. All they have to do is match skills to the economic cycles, as she notes. 500 carpenters next year, and 200 concrete workers, on the double thanks.

    Labour market needs track as close to our cycles of the economy as electricity use, land transport use, tax mix and tax take, and mortgages. Electricity supply is nationally regulated. Transport networks are fully nationalized and regulated. Tax is fully regulated of course. Mortgages are regulated and there is also a state-owned provider. They’ve even decided that housing needs a central provider big enough to tilt its entire market. So why be shy about state direction in Polytechs?

    The Polytech proposal is a half-baked version of Hipkins’ secondary school proposals, which themselves are just jelly when you put a finger on them.

    There’s no coherent philosophy or guiding structure – between regional and centralized – to what this government proposes for the polytech industry, or indeed electricity, land transport, the tax system, education system, health system, water system, or much else with a natural national need for controlled supply and demand in a very small country.

    Since they are nearly halfway through their term, none of these ideas they are putting out will happen anyway. Since they are not going to be as lucky as Key, they have to look like they are thinking clearly and across the whole country if they want to be attractive enough to be voted in again.

    That starts with strong policy coherence, not this nonsense.

    • Anne 23.1

      And they complain bitterly about Russia fucking with neighbouring countries.

      Talk about pots and kettles.

      I have believed for decades they are both as bad as one another!

  22. ken 24

    Dog whistle.

    As long as we don’t follow any of Soimun’s models, we’ll be OK.

  23. Ian 25

    Any jurisdiction that runs out of toilet paper has got to be dodgy.

  24. Morrissey 26

    The politicization of aid is a crime.

    The absurd and obscene sight of the Trump regime, that flagrant and gross violator of human rights, sending “aid” to the country it is illegally blockading is an insult not just to the democratically elected government of Venezuela, but to the whole world.

    Even the ghastly Al Jazeera hackette Lucia Newman admitted on tonight’s 9 o’clock news that the USAID packages being stacked on the border are “part of a strategy not just to help the needy, but to undermine the Venezuelan government.”

    https://theintercept.com/2019/01/30/elliott-abrams-venezuela-coup/

    https://odihpn.org/magazine/the-politicisation-of-humanitarian-aid-and-its-consequences-for-afghans/

  25. mac1 27

    “It would be easy if we could vote ourselves rich. However, we only need to look at Venezuela’s extreme food shortage, political unrest and resulting mass exodus of people to neighbouring countries to see all the reasons why socialism doesn’t work.”

    Stuart Smith, National MP for Kaikoura. Stuff 11 Feb 2019.

    A day in politics is a long time but two days after this post goes up we get this piece of political wisdom.

    And as well today, we learn of National’s disastrous poll.

    Can the two be linked?

    Are National trying the old Red smears again because of their latest poll result? Is it back to the ideological trenches again for National? It seems so, as their world view seems to be limited to what can be seen through a trench periscope……..

    “Gad, Smithers, the enemy seem to have built a large woven wall right across our front!”

    “Sorry, sir, but that’s one of our own sand-bags………”

  26. Philj 28

    Go easy on Simon he is a drowning man and will grasp at thin air to attempt a miracle.

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  • 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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 ...
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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 ...
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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 ...
    3 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. ...
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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. ...
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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 ...
    4 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 ...
    4 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
    4 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days ago
  • Luxon is one of three prime ministers pressing for a ceasefire in Gaza – but the two-state solutio...
    Buzz from the Beehive Two days after hundreds of people rallied outside the New Zealand parliament and the US embassy in Wellington to protest against what they maintain is genocide in Gaza,  Prime Minister Chris Luxon joined with the Prime Ministers of Australia and Canada to express their  concerns that ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • All jellied up with possum grease
    1. Shane Jones, addressing the energy industry, called climate concern what?a. The only sane responseb. Undeniably valid c. Our last best hope d. A "religion" 2. 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. Gleeful ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Equality comes to Greece
    The Greek Parliament has voted for marriage equality: Greece has become the first Christian Orthodox-majority country to legalise same-sex marriage. Same-sex couples will now also be legally allowed to adopt children after Thursday's 176-76 vote in parliament. Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said the new law would "boldly abolish a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • CHRIS TROTTER:  Iron in her soul.
      “Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” – Friedrich Nietzsche   Chris Trotter writes – TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND is to be congratulated for inviting Chloe Swarbrick onto its Q+A current affairs show. The Green MP ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to Feb 16
    Net emigration of New Zealanders overseas hit a record-high 47,000 in the 2023 year, which only partly offset net immigration of 173,000, which was dominated by arrivals from India, the Philippines and China with temporary work visas. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The five things that mattered in Aotearoa’s ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Stop Whispering.
    There's nothing to sayAnd there's nothing to doStop whispering, start shoutingStop whispering, start shoutingYesterday our government surprised a few of us by standing up for something. It wasn’t for the benefit of people who own holiday homes and multiple investment properties. Neither were there any tobacco companies or fishing cartels ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • “I'm Not Keen on Whataboutism, But What About…”
    Hi,Not sure how your week is going, but I’ve had a pretty frustrating one. I’ve been trying to put my finger on it, and I think it’s perhaps distilled in this message I got on Twitter:What got me a bit riled up is that it was a response to the ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National passing bad policies under urgency
    If National really had faith in its welfare policies, it wouldn’t be ramming them through Parliament under urgency – a step that means the policies can’t be exposed to select committee debate, public submissions, expert commentary, media scrutiny and all the normal democratic processes that this coalition appears to hold ...
    6 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 16-February-2024
    It’s Friday so once again here”s our roundup of some of the articles that caught our attention this week. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday Matt looked at the Government’s war on Auckland. On Tuesday Matt covered the ongoing issues with the rail network. On Thursday Matt ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    7 days ago
  • The Dawn Chorus for Friday, February 16
    The six things to note in my view at 6.30 am on Friday, February 16 in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy are: Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Iron In Her Soul.
    “Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” – Friedrich NietzscheTELEVISION NEW ZEALAND is to be congratulated for inviting Chloe Swarbrick onto its Q+A current affairs show. The Green MP for Auckland Central is the odds-on ...
    7 days ago
  • Dig this
    Resources Minister Shane Jones yesterday told a breakfast hosted by Energy Resources Aotearoa precisely what they wanted to hear. “We campaigned to rehabilitate relegitimise and stand up for working families who derive their income,  derive their hope and derive purpose in regional New Zealand through a flourishing, growing, forward-leaning energy ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    7 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #7 2024
    Open access notables Physics-based early warning signal shows that AMOC is on tipping course, van Westen et al., Science Advances: Here, we show results of the first tipping event in the Community Earth System Model, including the large climate impacts of the collapse. Using these results, we develop a physics-based and ...
    7 days ago
  • A rejection of the rule of law
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Shrugging-Off The Atlas Network.
    Upholding The Status-Quo: The Left’s election defeat is not the work of the Atlas Network. It is not even the work of David Seymour and Act. It is the work of ordinary citizens who liked the Right’s stories better than they liked the Left’s. If the Right’s stories were made ...
    1 week ago
  • BARRIE SAUNDERS: Treaty Principles – all rather problematic
    Barrie Saunders writes – When ACT’s leader said they wanted legislation to state what the Treaty principles mean, my first thought was this will be controversial and divisive.  Clearly it is. The first reference to the principles of the Treaty were contained in the 1975 Act establishing the Treaty of ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    1 week ago
  • Luxon Rejects The “Rejection Election” At His Peril.
    Fitting Right In: National retailed a reactionary manifesto of right-wing, racially-charged policies to the electorate throughout 2023. No talk back then of ignoring the overwhelming political preferences of the voting public and making a strong stand on principle. If Luxon’s pollsters and focus-groups were telling him that the public was ...
    1 week ago
  • Valentine’s Day went unnoticed on the Beehive website – but it is not “baa, humbug” to celeb...
    Buzz from the Beehive None of our ministers – a quick check with the Beehive website suggests – found cause to mention, let along celebrate, Valentine’s Day. But two ministers – Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson – ensured that National Lamb Day did not pass ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 week ago
  • Are You A Leftist?
    Nothing To Lose But Our Chains: The emancipatory movement which the Left, understood correctly, has always been, cannot accommodate those who are only able to celebrate one group’s freedom by taking it from another. The expectation, always, among leftists, is that liberty enlarges us. That striking-off a person’s shackles not ...
    1 week ago
  • An unlawful directive
    An interesting question in the Parliamentary written questions feed today, from Jan Tinetti to the Minister of Education: Has she or her Office directed the Ministry of Education to not release Official Information Act material prior to the full twenty working days, if so, why? Given that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • I’ve been doing this all wrong
    Here are six words that are not easy to say but god it can feel good when you finally say them:I’ve been doing this all wrongFive years ago today I said to myself:What if I'm doing this all wrong?Five years ago today I said to Karren: I think I’m going to ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • New study suggests the Atlantic overturning circulation AMOC “is on tipping course”
    This is a re-post from RealClimate by Stefan Rahmstorf A new paper was published in Science Advances today. Its title says what it is about: “Physics-based early warning signal shows that AMOC is on tipping course.” The study follows one by Danish colleagues which made headlines last July, likewise looking for early warning signals ...
    1 week ago
  • Drawn
    A ballot for five Member's Bills was held today, and the following bills were drawn: Parole (Mandatory Completion of Rehabilitative Programmes) Amendment Bill (Todd Stephenson) Goods and Services Tax (Removing GST From Food) Amendment Bill (Rawiri Waititi) Income Tax (ACC Payments) Amendment Bill (Hamish Campbell) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Valentines from ACT.
    Some of us make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. We’ll buy the flowers, eye watering though the price spike might be. Say the things we should be saying anyway, although diminished by being scheduled for delivery. Some of us will even write long free-form newsletters with declarations of ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Tax cuts paid for by 13k more kids in poverty
    MSD advised the government that the indexation change it passed under urgency last night is likely to put around 7,000 extra children (and potentially up to 13,000) into poverty. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The Government has reverted indexation for main beneficiaries to price inflation from wage inflation under ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week 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
    6 hours 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
    6 hours 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
    7 hours 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
    7 hours 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
    10 hours 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
    10 hours 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
    12 hours 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
    1 day 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
    2 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
    2 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
    3 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
    4 days 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
    6 days 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    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
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