Wrong government for the times

Written By: - Date published: 7:25 am, September 1st, 2011 - 44 comments
Categories: disaster, leadership, national - Tags: ,

Not even right wingers believe their own rhetoric about small government and the invisible hand of the market. When the shit hits the fan they call for the government to “do something!”. Internationally we’ve just had the huge taxpayer funded bailout of finance sector. Here in NZ we turn to the government to respond to the Christchurch earthquakes.

Case in point, newly converted fan of Big Government Fran O’Sullivan:

Economy in danger and Govt must act

Why hasn’t the National Government urgently launched a three-point action programme to deal with the serious risks to the economy resulting from the major earthquakes in Canterbury?

Why indeed.

The Canterbury quakes are proving to have a much more significant impact on this country than the global financial crisis which sparked the Key Government’s launch of a “rolling maul” of initiatives.

What “rolling maul” was that exactly? Re-announcing Labour’s infrastructure spending and the highly elusive cycleway?

How hard would it be for the Government to:

* Immediately impose a special tax aimed at higher income earners to start replenishing the Natural Disaster Fund which has been exhausted by the impact of the Christchurch quakes.

* Commandeer large amounts of stable land on the outskirts of Christchurch and launch a big state-led building programme to get people safely rehoused quickly. Do this instead of allowing developers to book obscene profits at the expense of fellow citizens who have already lost enough of their equity through the quakes.

* Tell New Zealanders – including the business community – the truth about just what it will cost in future to insure residential and commercial buildings in this seismically challenged land.

Good suggestions one and all. But Fran’s pleas are going to fall on deaf ears. The Nats have set out the minimum response of their red zone package, and are clearly reluctant to attempt anything more. Whether through incompetence, inertia, small government ideology, or simple conservatism, this is not a government of action.

These are extraordinary times. The global financial system has never recovered from the recession and further turmoil seems likely. Population demographics, peak oil and extreme weather are going to raise further challenges. And as if that wasn’t enough, NZ has to cope with the aftermath of the quakes.

We desperately need an active government. A government that looks ahead, plans for the future, and isn’t afraid of innovative responses to the problems of the here and now. A government with vision and guts. It isn’t National. We have the wrong government for the times.

44 comments on “Wrong government for the times ”

  1. Bored 1

    When the shit hits the fan they call for the government to “do something!”. Nanny Nanny HELP!!!!!!!

    • David 1.1

      Dear bored. You must be getting really bored at this governments response to…well anything, if thats the best you can come up with

      • Craig Glen Eden 1.1.1

        Your comment makes no sense David Bored makes perfect sense.

      • bbfloyd 1.1.2

        why wouldn’t we be bored with watching nothing happening for three years? getting sick of waiting for some sort of meaningful leadership….

        only the thick, and terminally ossified tory could possibly believe this govt has any intention of actually governing in any useful way….

        • Bored 1.1.2.1

          Thanks gents for putting David right, he must have some buffalo hide if he has not noticed the lack of action from Jokey and crew, very tedious, ennui inducing.

          PS Does David have any useful information on the actual delivery of a cycleway?

  2. John Dalley 2

    Nanny State from Granny Key.

    • aerobubble 2.1

      Businesses in ChCh want their population to stay put. So whose driving this?
      Simply builders know if the people flee because they are getting gouged then
      they will have less work, less customers, and will flee too. ChCh is not
      going to be all that happy with National in a decade’s time. National
      played their card, they were for better businesses, but its a hollow promise.
      Much like Key’s new promise that trust him shares won’t be sold to
      overseas, its what I plan to do, buy, hold, get the bonus shares, and then
      sell to overseas for a profit. Lots of people are now knocking on the bank
      to see if they can borrow off the shares they have yet to buy. Its what
      the big companies do all the time, go to the market to borrow money off
      the assets they are about to buy! Yes, you got it, Key sells tax payers
      assets with one hand, the government banks print money to Banks who
      lend it to big investors to buy those assets, and do the equation, before
      we owned them, after a select group of investors own them.

      Greens hit it on the head, those assets should be used as collateral
      to borrow to invest in new green energy, not to be paying the interest
      off of new shareholders who used the assets to buy the companies.

      Its yet another hand out to the richest.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1

        Greens hit it on the head, those assets should be used as collateral to borrow…

        Nope. The government never needs to borrow as it has the full resources of the nation to command.

    • mik e 2.2

      Keys become a cult hero celeb pm leader and New Zealanders are following like sheep .When they wake up to this muppet they’ll be all Shagged.

  3. Craig Glen Eden 3

    But but Fran isnt the market going to sort this out? Oh no thats right the market is waiting to eat up NZers state owned assets instead.

    Fran journalists like you have enabled this to happen, drunk on Keys smile and wave routine you have sold New Zealanders down the road with poor journalism.
    Fran you are a disgrace your crying wolf when it is probably all to late is disingenuous.

    • tc 3.1

      Here here only commentators like hickey and oram can hold their heads up, Fran, Armstrong etc all the tv heads have been nothing but govt shills helping to swing the uninformed over to blag key’s dealing room another term.

  4. thejackal 4

    Budget 2009 announced a cut:

    Funding for industry training will reduce by $57.7m over 4 years ($11.5 million in 2012/13 and $23.1 million in 2013/14 and outyears) in response to a decline in demand, under-delivery and the TEC’s operational review.

    Then Steven Joyce gleefully announced extra funding in 2011:

    Budget 2011 will provide up to $42 million for trades training for the Canterbury region, Tertiary education Minister Steven Joyce says. Funding is being set aside for up to 1500 additional training places as part of a comprehensive cross-agency response to meet additional demand for labour for the reconstruction programme called “Skills for Canterbury”.

    The net effect of the maximum additional funding for training people to rebuild Christchurch and the Budget 2009 cut for industry training is a cut of $15.7 million for industry training. Clearly this is incompetent leadership. Because of the mass exodus of trained young people, them already being in short supply in NZ and National’s cuts to training, I think Otautahi is unlikely to be rebuilt anytime soon.

  5. Afewknowthetruth 5

    ‘How hard would it be to….?’

    Impossible.

    The present government is irrevocably tied to:

    1. the bankers’ Fractional Reserve Ponzi scheme

    2. international capitalism

    3. the fossil fuel sector

    This government will therefore continue to pursue policies that facilitate the agendas of bankers, global corporate capitalism and fossil fuel companies until it can’t, i.e. until the system implodes due to energy depletion and/or environmental collapse.

    Unfortunately, there is no credible opposition, and most people haven’t got a clue what is going on, so they believe the propaganda continuouslly churned out by spin doctors.

    Hence, every day that passes all the things that actually matter get worse.

    As conditions deteriorate we should expect to see more and more rats deserting the sinking ship, leaving the die-hard fascists in charge.

  6. ianmac 6

    Because we have short memories it seem likely that Mr Key will announce bright progressive plans for such things as Christchurch Recovery sometime soon, after leaving many wallowing in uncertainty for months. A flood of feel good will waft over all well into November.
    If you have a strangler cutting off your breath, then a relaxing of the hand will leave you very grateful to the strangler.

    • prism 6.1

      @ianmac The Stockholm Syndrome theory of political popularity! You could be right – Bob Parker was not the favourite person for repeat Christchurch Mayor with dodgy financial dealing and overspending on uncertain land development supposedly with a crony, and then the earthquake. A chance for him to smile and sound encouraging and supportive and the see saw heaves him high.

  7. Policy Parrot 7

    Interesting ideas from Fran:

    * Immediately impose a special tax aimed at higher income earners to start replenishing the Natural Disaster Fund which has been exhausted by the impact of the Christchurch quakes.
    – Absolutely – this will lower the amount the government is borrowing and overseas reinsurers will be assured by such an action.

    * Commandeer large amounts of stable land on the outskirts of Christchurch and launch a big state-led building programme to get people safely rehoused quickly. Do this instead of allowing developers to book obscene profits at the expense of fellow citizens who have already lost enough of their equity through the quakes.
    – Yes. It’s not necessarily about depriving developers of profits per se, but more about getting things under way. Why are we waiting to start the rebuild? There are plenty of companies that can build homes to a modest and modern standard, and builders and the building industry is crying out for work. Some of the Green belt will have to come into use sooner than previously anticipated (but still operating under the guise of the original land strategy), unless people really want to move out to Rolleston, Pegasus.

    * Tell New Zealanders – including the business community – the truth about just what it will cost in future to insure residential and commercial buildings in this seismically challenged land.
    – To be fair, they may not know this yet. It hasn’t been established what type of event this was, i.e. 1 in 100/200/500/1000 year event, so until that is established, there will only be an expectation that premiums will rise somewhat.

  8. tsmithfield 8

    “Commandeer large amounts of stable land on the outskirts of Christchurch and launch a big state-led building programme to get people safely rehoused quickly.”

    Sounds like an approach that would fit better with China, or Stalanist Russia.

    While CERA probably has these sorts of powers, I think it is better to see if people can make decisions on the basis of their own free choices first, rather than confiscating assets from people who may well want to keep them.

    • uke 8.1

      “…confiscating assets from people who may well want to keep them.”
       
      Hasn’t Brownlee & Co. already done something along these lines by forcibly demolishing private buildings in central ChCh against their owners’ wishes?
       
      Furthermore, in previous times of war and economic depression NZ govts have never been slow to approriate land for all manner of projects. What’s so different in this case?

      • tsmithfield 8.1.1

        Maybe. However, that is in the central city red zone where there are safety issues to consider, and buildings have to come down anyway. So it is a different scenario.

    • insider 8.2

      Rather than encouraging a cash strapped govt to pay out even more cash to take land off people, why not just ease the planning rules freeing up more land for development. Isn;t the issue that people with cash are competing for a limited supply of sections within the metro limit, which is pushing up demand and putting housing out of reach.

      Wouldn;t Govt outervention be a better solution than intervention to solve a regulatory issue?

    • bbfloyd 8.3

      ts… you can still surprise me with the sheer stupidity, and lack of any depth whatsoever with each uttering you share with us…

      if you had the barest notion of relevant historical perspective, you would know that it’s the capitalists who were grabbing huge areas of land centuries before marx wrote his books… that has only abated due to the earth being possessed of finite amounts of land…

      are you going to waste your life being a hater? ’cause you’re hating the wrong people…. the real thieves are your hero’s… always have been, and always will be, until they are forced to stop… unfortunately, most likely at gunpoint…

  9. Afewknowthetruth 9

    With respect to my previous comment about a major jolt to the global economic system being likely before the end of this year (and very pertient to the wrong government for the times)…….

    Panic button:

    http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/25-signs-that-the-financial-world-is-about-to-hit-the-big-red-panic-button

    Of course, this could provide Shokey with an opportunity to tell us how he is going to ‘save us’ [via more corporate looting].

    • Draco T Bastard 9.1

      Quoting article:

      None of the fundamental problems that caused the crisis of 2008 have been fixed. The world financial system is still one gigantic mountain of debt, leverage and risk.

      Authorities around the globe will certainly do all they can to keep things stable, but in the end it is inevitable that the house of cards is going to come crashing down.

      There’s only one way to “rescue” the present financial system and that is to negate all debt. That won’t happen though as then all the rich people won’t be rich any more. No one in power cares about the other 99% of people.

      Of course, doing that won’t actually bring about the necessary changes to bring humanity to living within the Renewable Resource Base and so we’ll still be affected by the damage that Peak Oil and Climate Change will bring about.

      • aerobubble 9.1.1

        The great depression occured in the 30s. But it was not the first global downturn.
        there were many at the end of the nineteen century. The leaders, the politics,
        knew a lot more than our class of 82 does, Thatcherism is their mantra its
        all they’ve known. So unlike the Great Depression where leaders could sell
        the idea of intravention and the ‘new’ deal, our leaders are dumbnuts.

        We are all frakked. Instead of managing our way through the crisises we
        keep digging.

  10. ak 10

    Crikey. So having shilled and hacked and subtly fomented Helenhate relentlessly for years and with 2011 supposedly in the bag, wee Franny now feels bold enough to flash her inner socialist streak. Yuk. Lipstick on a cadaver, ropy old press mutton sporting a touch of lamb and fooling no one.

  11. marsman 11

    Wrong Government for the times? Wrong Government for any time. They are incompetent, inept, mismanaging the economy and arrogant.

    • That leaves us with quite a problem, if here National is deemed to be the “wrong Government for the times”, and the polls and blogs keep suggesting that Labour is the wrong Government-in-waiting, what to do?

      • Bored 11.1.1

        Pete, there is merit in that statement, I accuse both mainstream parties of being so wedded (like yourself) to the status quo and the conventional wisdom that neither can see what they are actually confronted with.

        • Pete George 11.1.1.1

          I agree that the two main parties are very status quo orientated but much of my approach is to challenge the status quo. I’m certainly challenging the status quo in Dunedin North.

          While UnitedFuture may also seem status quo as a small party rebuilding it’s a lot more open to a variety of ideas and approaches than may be apparent. Candidates have been advised to get out and say what we want. Obviously we have to consider party but much less than in the large rigid campaign strategies.

      • kriswgtn 11.1.2

        Def not the hairpiece

      • Afewknowthetruth 11.1.3

        PG

        Don’t forget that ‘the proles’ have been kept misinformed, and have been carefully trained to behaive stupidly, so it is hardly surprising that they ‘don’t know anything’ and that they behave stupidly at every election.

        Nationally there is little that can be done at this late stage (all the major issues were identified in the 1960s and 1970s, and were ignored.). The damage has been done -to society and to the environment.

        Even at the local level there is little that can be done, since most districts councils comprise of a very large proportion of sociopaths who are there for what they can get out of it. I cannot think of one item of major policy that my local council promotes which will be of ANY long term benefit to the community.

        When it all goes down [over the coming years] people wil either have to set up very local systems within their immediate neighbourhoods or starve to death.

      • KJT 11.1.4

        Vote Green.

        • AAMC 11.1.4.1

          Only if the make a statement that the will not go into coalition with national. I’ve voted Green at every MMP election, now they’re Blue Green, I’m heading to Labour. Unless the Greens are prepared to stop trying to appear so reasonable and step up!

          • KJT 11.1.4.1.1

            I do not think it would be possible for National to have enough common policy for a coalition to be acceptable to the Greens.

            • AAMC 11.1.4.1.1.1

              I agree, so why say you’d consider it when the Nat’s ideology is supposedly so contrary to the Greens? Especially at this moment.

  12. Rodel 12

    Trotter’s column in the Press makes good points.
    Between Gerry and his highly paid ‘moderators’, Shipley & co., Sir Bob, and that nice man Roger on $10,000 a week Christchurch people haven’t yet seen clear results but are being assured that no one will lose out.
    Is it, ‘yeah right’ or ‘nah wrong?’

    And how about that Japanese prof, a specialist in the field who reckons most of the CBD buildings earmarked for demolition could be retained and strengthened for 40% of the cost of demolition and rebuilding. No-one seems to have listened to him Too busy counting wages I guess.
    Good luck Christchurch. It’s time you had some.

    • aerobubble 12.1

      But wasn’t there historical problem with the way ChCh was laid out, the perfect
      ratio was not understood by the builders and that problem would remain if
      the facades remained. We’ve come a long way from the initial property
      builders who did their bit, however magnificiently but without much
      presense of mind to the whole theme. This happens a lot in cities, the cities
      grow, the bad designs are demolished, eventually as in ChCh even the
      bigger design has to be dumped. I would bet that the 7 storey limit
      is just right for the width of the streets in the central district to be
      asthetically pleasing. Well that’s if a lot of the facades are demolished.
      As for the its all empty, nobody will return, that’s bollocks. Many of
      these new buildings are going to have to have far more extensive
      foundations and the facades will cost a lot more surely to strengthen.
      I of course am totally guessing. Most cities grow rules about what
      can go into a older site and stop just anything going up, that’s
      why Auckland is such a disaster also. Lots of buildings doing their
      own thing and no wider fit into what exists already.

  13. Jim Nald 13

    Speaking of that fine city, known once upon a time as Christchurch, ….. we will next be waving bye bye to a fifth of Canterbury University staff ….. when they canter across the Ditch:

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10748773

    We weep

  14. logie97 14

    Joky Hen and his mates – champions of innovation and setters of trends…?

    ‘http://uk.news.yahoo.com/say-goodbye-to-60-watt-lightbulbs-.html

    You gotta love it, haven’t you – They have taken us backwards in yet another field.
    All the manufacturers must be hunting around the world for outlets for their neanderthal stocks. Which country can we dump on? Oh yeah, there’s somewhere in the South Pacific. An entrepreneurial government – NACT New Zealand it’s called.

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    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
    Hi,Tickled was one of the craziest things that ever happened to me (and I feel like a lot of crazy things have happened to me).So ahead of the Webworm popup and Tickled screening in New Zealand on July 13, I thought I’d write about how we made that film and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
    One occasionally runs into the question of what J.R.R. Tolkien would have thought of George R.R. Martin. For years, I had a go-to online answer: we could use a stand-in. Tolkien’s thoughts on E.R. Eddison – that he appreciated the invented world, but thought the invented names were silly, and ...
    5 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
    A listing of 35 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 9, 2024 thru Sat, June 15, 2024. Story of the week A glance at this week's inventory of what experts tell us is extreme weather mayhem juiced by ...
    5 days ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
    After a busy week it’s a good day to relax. Clear blues skies here in Tamaki Makaurau, very peaceful but for my dogs sleeping heavily. In the absence of a full newsletter I thought I’d send out a brief update and share a couple of posts that popped up in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • The Book of Henry
    Now in the land of Angus beef and the mighty ABsWhere the steaks were juicy and the rivers did run foulIt would often be said,This meal is terrible,andNo, for real this is legit the worst thing I've ever eatenBut this was an thing said only to others at the table,not ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    6 days ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    1 week ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    1 week ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    1 week ago
  • Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashIt’s that new day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for our chat about the week’s news with special guests:5.00 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    1 week ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how moderates empower the political right
    Struth, what a week. Having made sure the rural sector won’t have to pay any time soon for its pollution, PM Christopher Luxon yesterday chose Fieldays 2024 to launch a parliamentary inquiry into rural banking services, to see how the banks have been treating farmers faced with high interest rates. ...
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Thursday, June 13
    In April, 17,656 people left Aotearoa-NZ to live overseas, averaging 588 a day, with just over half of those likely to have gone to Australia. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Thursday, June 13 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Our guide to having your say on the draft RLTP 2024
    Auckland’s draft Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) 2024 is open for feedback – and you only have until Monday 17 June to submit. Do it! Join the thousands of Aucklanders who are speaking up for wise strategic investment that will dig us out of traffic and give us easy and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • The China puzzle
    Chinese Premier Li Qiang arrives in Wellington today for a three-day visit to the country. The visit will take place amid uncertainty about the future of the New Zealand-China relationship. Li hosted a formal welcome and then lunch for then-Prime Minister Chris Hipkins in Beijing a year ago. The pair ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Fossil fuels are shredding our democracy
    This is a re-post of an article from the Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler published on June 3, 2024. I have an oped in the New York Times (gift link) about this. For a long time, a common refrain about the energy transition was that renewable energy needed to become ...
    1 week ago
  • Life at 20 kilometres an hour
    We are still in France, getting from A to B.Possibly for only another week, though; Switzerland and Germany are looming now. On we pedal, towards Budapest, at about 20 km per hour.What are are mostly doing is inhaling a country, loving its ways and its food. Rolling, talking, quietly thinking. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Hipkins is still useless
    The big problem with the last Labour government was that they were chickenshits who did nothing with the absolute majority we had given them. They governed as if they were scared of their own shadows, afraid of making decisions lest it upset someone - usually someone who would never have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Exercising with the IDF.
    This morning I did something I seldom do, I looked at the Twitter newsfeed. Normally I take the approach of something that I’m not sure is an American urban legend, or genuinely something kids do over there. The infamous bag of dog poo on the front porch, set it on ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Helm Hammerhand Anime: First Pictures and an Old English ‘Hera’
    We have some news on the upcoming War of the Rohirrim anime. It will apparently be two and a half hours in length, with Peter Jackson as Executive Producer, and Helm’s daughter Hera will be the main character. Also, pictures: The bloke in the middle picture is Freca’s ...
    1 week ago
  • Farmers get free pass on climate AND get subsidies
    The cows will keep burping and farting and climate change will keep accelerating - but farmers can stop worrying about being included in the ETS. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Wednesday, June 12 were:The ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Six ideas to secure Te Huia’s Future
    This is a guest post by our friend Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which features “musings about public transport and other cool stuff in Aotearoa/ New Zealand and around the globe.” With Te Huia now having funding secure through to 2026, now is ...
    Greater AucklandBy Darren Davis
    1 week ago
  • The methane waka sinks
    In some ways, there may be less than meets the eye to the Government announcement yesterday that the He Waka Eke Noa proposal for farmers to pay for greenhouse gas emissions has been scrapped. The spectre of farmers still having to pay at some point in the future remains. That, ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • At a glance – Does positive feedback necessarily mean runaway warming?
    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 ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Farmers get what they wanted – for now
    Since entering office, National has unravelled practically every climate policy, leaving us with no effective way of reducing emissions or meeting our emissions budgets beyond magical thinking around the ETS. And today they've announced another step: removing agriculture entirely. At present, following the complete failure of he waka eka noa, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Presumed Innocent?
    The blue billionaireDistraction no interactionOr movement outside these glazed over eyesThe new great divideFew fight the tide to be glorifiedBut will he be satisfied?Can we accept this without zoom?The elephant in the roomNot much happens in politics on a Monday. Bugger all in fact. Although yesterday Christopher Luxon found he ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Gordon Campbell on our doomed love affair with oil and gas
    What if New Zealand threw a fossil fuel party, and nobody came? On the weekend, Resources Minister Shane Jones sent out the invitations and strung up the balloons, but will anyone really want to invest big time in resuming oil and gas exploration in our corner of the planet? Yes, ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    2 weeks ago

  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
    The Department of Internal Affairs [Department] is making a significant upgrade to their Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which blocks access to websites known to host child sexual abuse material, says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “The Department will incorporate the up-to-date lists of websites hosting child sexual ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New vaccine research aims to combat prevalent bovine disease
    A vaccine to prevent an infectious disease that costs New Zealand cattle farmers more than $190 million each year could radically improve the health of our cows and boost on-farm productivity, Associate Agriculture Minister Andrew Hoggard says. The Ministry for Primary Industries is backing a project that aims to develop ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Making it easier to build granny flats
    The Government has today announced that it is making it easier for people to build granny flats, Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop say. “Making it easier to build granny flats will make it more affordable for families to live the way that suits them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
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    1 week ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at Government House in Wellington today.  “I was pleased to welcome Premier Li to Wellington for his first official visit, which marks 10 years since New Zealand and China established a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Mr Luxon says. “The Premier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
    The coalition Government is taking action to reduce the gender pay gap in New Zealand through the development of a voluntary calculation tool. “Gender pay gaps have impacted women for decades, which is why we need to continue to drive change in New Zealand,” Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
    The coalition Government is boosting funding for Rural Support Trusts to provide more help to farmers and growers under pressure, Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson announced today. “A strong and thriving agricultural sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy and one of the ways to support it is to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
    Spending on contractors and consultants continues to fall and the size of the Public Service workforce has started to decrease after years of growth, according to the latest data released today by the Public Service Commission. Workforce data for the quarter from 31 December 23 to 31 March 24 shows ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
    Thank you to the Law Association for inviting me to speak this morning. As a former president under its previous name — the Auckland District Law Society — I take particular satisfaction in seeing this organisation, and its members, in such good heart. As Attorney-General, I am grateful for these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • 25 years on, NZ reaffirms enduring friendship with Timor Leste
    New Zealand is committed to working closely with Timor-Leste to support its prosperity and resilience, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “This year is the 25th anniversary of New Zealand sending peacekeepers to Timor-Leste, who contributed to the country’s stabilisation and ultimately its independence,” Mr Peters says.    “A quarter ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Inquiry requested into rural banking
    Promoting robust competition in the banking sector is vital to rebuilding the economy, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “New Zealanders deserve a banking sector that is as competitive as possible. Banking services play an important role in our communities and in the economy. Kiwis rely on access to lending when ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ministry for Regulation targets red tape to keep farmers and growers competitive
    Regulation Minister David Seymour, Environment Minister Penny Simmonds, and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard have today announced a regulatory sector review on the approval process for new agricultural and horticultural products.    “Red tape stops farmers and growers from getting access to products that have been approved by other OECD countries. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to reverse blanket speed limit reductions
    The Coalition Government will reverse Labour’s blanket speed limit reductions by 1 July 2025 through a new Land Transport Rule released for public consultation today, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  The draft speed limit rule will deliver on the National-ACT coalition commitment to reverse the previous government’s blanket speed limit ...
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    1 week ago
  • Chair appointments for NZSO, CNZ and NZ On Air
    Minister Paul Goldsmith is making major leadership changes within both his Arts and Media portfolios. “I am delighted to announce Carmel Walsh will be officially stepping into the role of Chair of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, having been acting Chair since April,” Arts Minister Paul Goldsmith says.  “Carmel is ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government focus on long-term food, fibre growth
    Food and fibre export revenue is tipped to reach $54.6 billion this year and hit a record $66.6b in 2028 as the Government focuses on getting better access to markets and cutting red tape, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones say. “This achievement is testament ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Govt consulting on cutting red tape for exporters
    A new export exemption proposal for food businesses demonstrates the coalition Government’s commitment to reducing regulatory barriers for industry and increasing the value of New Zealand exports, which gets safe New Zealand food to more markets, says Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The coalition Government has listened to the concerns ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

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