Sunday, July 21, 2019

Karl du Fresne: Otago's academics know what's best for us, so let's put them in charge

The thought often occurs to me that New Zealand could save itself a whole lot of money and political argy-bargy by simply handing over the governance of the country to the academics of Otago University. 

They know exactly what needs to be done. They never tire of telling us. Barely a week passes without one of their number pointing how simple it would be, using regulatory tools, to create a Utopia here in our remote corner of the Pacific.

If only we listened to their advice, New Zealand would be a fairer, safer, healthier and more equal society. (Not freer, though, because freedom can get in the way of Utopian visions and must be strictly controlled by people who know what’s best for us.)

Mole News

Andrew Little reopens talks with Ngāpuhi on treaty settlement
Treaty Negotiations Minister Andrew Little has re-opened the conversation with Ngāpuhi, in a low-key visit to the north this week.

The minister has met with hapū on both sides of the mandate divide in the past week, to sound them out on any progress towards negotiations.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Bob Edlin: Megan’s handouts for heaters - or not

The Point of Order Trough Monitor typically alerts us to government spending decisions.

The merits of each grant, investment, loan and what-have-you which the monitor identifies are a matter of opinion. Recipients are apt to be keen to express their gratitude. Taxpayers often have cause to complain the money is being misspent.

But the monitor can also spot a handout which doesn’t measure up to what was promised. Somebody somewhere has been short-changed.

Melanie Phillips: The real racism behind the Trump/Omar furore

There’s always something ugly and disturbing about an enormous crowd being roused to mass emotion by the words of a charismatic orator. So it was when Americans chanted “lock her up” about Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential campaign in response to then candidate Donald Trump’s repeated claims that she had committed crimes for which she should be prosecuted. 

And so it was again during this week’s Trump rally in North Carolina when a section of the crowd started chanting “send her back” in response to President Trump’s attack on the sayings and attitudes of congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

NZCPR Weekly: The Best Interests of the Child

Dear NZCPR Reader,   

This week we look into the controversy over child protection services and we highlight our concerns over the dangerous call for race-based partnerships, our NZCPR Guest Commentator former Canadian Judge Brian Giesbrecht – in an article that I cannot recommend highly enough – warns against taking an indigenous approach to child welfare, and our poll asks whether you support the call by Maori leaders for child protection services to be run by iwi.

*To read the newsletter click HERE.
*To register for the NZCPR Weekly mailing list, click HERE.

Friday, July 19, 2019

GWPF Newsletter: One Of The Deepest Solar Minima In 100 Years Underway Now

Green Germany Risks Running Out Of Power

In this newsletter:

1) One Of The Deepest Solar Minima In 100 Years Underway Now
Tony Phillips,, 16 July 2019
2) Green Germany Risks Running Out Of Power
Reuters, 18 July 2019

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

GWPF Newsletter - Finnish Scientists: Effect Of Human Activity On Climate Change Is Insignificant

New Science: Clouds And Solar Cycles Play Greater Role Than Thought

In this newsletter:

1) Finnish Scientists: Effect Of Human Activity On Climate Change Is Insignificant
Helsinki Times, 14 July 2019
2) New Climate Science: Clouds And Solar Cycles Play Greater Role Than Thought 
Graham Lloyd, The Australian, 13 July 2019

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Gerry Eckhoff: Freedom of expression

It is a privilege and a pleasure to read the erudite columnist Gina Barreca – the American humourist, academic and distinguished professor of English literature.  Her writings just percolate that most elusive of all human conditions -common sense – which is far removed from being, well, common. She writes of the essential role of newspapers upholding the freedoms and traditions of a free press with special reference to cartoons, especially of a political nature. The brilliance of a particularly insightful cartoon can help defuse a smoldering issue or the rage of the righteous.

This past decade has seen, as never before in peace time, a continuous attempt to sanitize the media on whom we rely to offer freedom of speech, if this essential element in a democracy is to mean anything. That is why the opinion pages of a newspaper are so important to those who “only stand and wait”. The Australian PM Scott Morrison calls such people the “quiet Australians.” Here in NZ, the clatter and the cry of the few demand futile declarations of a “Climate Emergency” which shows just how simple it is to cry wolf and be heard -  if you are against something – anything.

Monday, July 15, 2019

NZCPR Submission: Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill

Public submissions on the Government’s disastrous Zero Carbon close tomorrow, Tuesday the 16th of July – see HERE

We recommend that anyone concerned about the long term consequences for New Zealand of this Bill send in a submission – even a simple one – opposing it. The larger the number of opposing submissions, the more likely the Government is to listen – so please spread the message. 

You can see the submission submitted by the NZCPR below.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

James Delingpole: My Solution to Climate Change? Eat Prince Charles

The Prince of Wales has warned global leaders that if we don’t tackle climate change in 18 months the human race will go extinct. 

No, really. Here are his actual words, in a speech in London yesterday to foreign ministers from the Commonwealth.

“I am firmly of the view that the next 18 months will decide our ability to keep climate change to survivable levels and to restore nature to the equilibrium we need for our survival”.

OK. So assuming, for a moment, that the Prince of Wales isn’t just spouting gibberish, what kind of measures might we need to adopt in the next 18 months to “keep climate change to survivable levels”?

Friday, July 12, 2019

Clive Bibby: Finding a cure is more difficult than identifying the cause

Frustrations with the failure of the Public Health System to deliver for Maori have reached boiling point across the nation- in some areas more than others.

Understandably, some Iwi leaders are saying "Enough!"

Are they right?

The evidence that was presented mainly by Maori Health professionals to the Waitangi Tribunal Health Services and Outcomes Hearing at Ngaruawahia recently left those in attendance in no doubt that, according to them, the root cause of this failure is the institutionalised and individually practiced racism within the system.

Karl du Fresne: Taking a short cut to power

Sigh. Here we go again.

According to a TVNZ news report, Northland Maori are lobbying for greater representation in local government. Despite having one of the highest Maori populations in the country, Northland iwi leaders say the lack of Maori representation on district councils means Maori are not being heard.

Ngati Hine kaumatua Pita Tipene laments that local government legislation and processes are “shutting out our people”. Not for the first time, compulsory Maori seats have been touted as one possible answer. But the solution to the lack of Maori representation is achingly obvious.

NZCPR Weekly: Privatising New Zealand’s Coastline – Beach by Beach

Dear NZCPR Reader,   

This week we report on the progress of claims under the Marine and Coastal Area Act and renew our call for the law to be repealed, our NZCPR Guest Commentator Frank Newman – an interested party in the High Court claims – shares his observations of the process, and our poll asks whether you agree that the Marine and Coastal Area Act should be repealed.
*To read the newsletter click HERE.
*To register for the NZCPR Weekly mailing list, click HERE.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Barry Brill: Climate Scare Could Be Gone By 2030

The New Zealand Government’s published modelling for its Carbon Zero Bill estimates a wealth loss of $200-300 billion over 30+ years of ‘blood toil tears and sweat’ to increase New Zealand’s 2050 net emissions reduction target from 50% to 100%.

The NZIER report is at pains to say that its modelling should not be seen as a cost-benefit analysis”, nor a prediction of what will happen in future. It is merely the calculated outcome of certain assumptions – key ones being (a) there will be no exogenous technological change and (b) the following things would happen as “business as usual” (BAU)[1] without policy changes:

    electric vehicles will reach 65% of the fleet by 2050;
    a methane vaccine will be available from 2030;
    unidentified innovations will deliver a 50% reduction in emissions by 2050;
    the ‘rest of the world’ will take strong action on climate

Barry Brill: Climate-wise – We Are The Champions!

All climate policy lobbyists worldwide see the word “leader” as being the holy grail. It is used in a quantitative  and competitive sense as in “country X is now in the lead” or “country Y is the clear leader”. Achieving leadership is positioned as a much-desired vanity project.

So who is the current gold medallist in the climate policy stakes?

New Zealand has fancied itself for some time. Back in 2008 then Prime Minister Helen Clarke declared: “New Zealand is now a world leader in its action programme on climate change. Labour will keep it that way.”

Barry Brill: 2050 - Costs vs Benefits

The fundamental question raised by the 2050 zero carbon proposal can be put simply: Is selecting that year worth the price? Or, is the proposed cure worse than the disease?

Governments and corporations everywhere answer similar questions all the time by cost-benefit analyses. But climate policy is an exception. No cost-benefit study of any kind is included in the 160-page Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) that accompanies the ‘Zero Carbon Bill’. 

We have a Government modelling estimate that the economic losses will amount to a massive $300 billion or about $20,000 per household. Is that a fair share?  Our current gross emissions are about 28 metric tonnes per household, so the modelled price might be slightly over $1,000 for each tonne reduced. Is that reasonable value for money? Are more cost-effective methods available?

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

GWPF Newsletter: BBC Faces Legal Challenge As Viewers Raise Thousands To Tackle ‘Bias’

'The Supposedly Impartial BBC Should Hang Its Head In Shame At Its Relentless Bias'

In this newsletter:

1) BBC Faces Legal Challenge As Viewers Raise Thousands To Tackle 'Bias'
Daily Express, 8 July 2019 
2) Help Us Stop BBC Bias
Crowd Justice: Stop BBC Bias

Monday, July 8, 2019

Bob Edlin: Yili’s gain on the West Coast brings a $500,000 windfall to farmers – but local leaders lament sale to foreigners

Westland  Milk  Products  farmer-shareholders  voted overwhelming in the past week to accept  the  $558m  takeover bid   by   Chinese  giant  Yili  for the   co-op’s  milk processing  operation.

For  individual  farmer shareholders, the  bid  means an injection of  around  $500,000 each  into their  bank accounts,  plus better  returns for their milk  over  the  next  10 years.
No wonder  94%  of the  96% eligible shareholders  cast their votes in   favour.  West Coast farmer and Federated Farmer president Katie Milne, who is also a WMP director, said it was an “absolutely stunning” result for West Coast farmers.
Yet the  sale  is lamented  by  many local leaders, as well  as  by  NZ  First  whose spokesman  Mark Patterson  wailed about an  “alarming trend”.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Rex Warwood: New Zealand in urgent need of a reset of the way it is governed

Former Prime Minister, Sir John Key, is obviously still hurting after losing his bid in 2016, to see a change in the make-up of New Zealand’s flag when the vote in the second referendum ended with 56.6 per cent to 43.2 per cent support for the current national flag.

Sir John was reported as saying recently he would not hold a flag referendum if he could have his time as Prime Minister again. “Instead,” stated 1 TV News, “he would simply change New Zealand's national flag and “let the public love it or lump it.”

This story raised the question of binding referenda, a subject which is taboo to most politicians who know very well that by giving the public a say on major issues, the politicians would lose a large proportion of the control which they now currently hold over the electorate.

Sandra Mckechnie: Celebrate the Climate

I feel sorry for the Green Party members, especially their MPs, because they have no idea about history, or geology. 

I have only a rudimentary knowledge myself: but I know how the sun governs earth, and what a  “star” it is. I also have some idea of how our planet Earth and humankind began.

By studying radioactive elements in the earth’s crust, scientists, geologists, etc, tell us that Earth may have been formed 4 billion years ago; that life of a sort existed some 500 million years ago and that humankind was not part of all this until quite late in the piece.