Saturday, July 13, 2024

Lushington D. Brady: Jacinta Price Sets Out a New Way

Time for Aboriginal Australia to step up and out of the past

The Dutton opposition in Australia is going big and bold. Ever since John Hewson was belted so thoroughly in 1993 for daring to lay out his policies in detail two years out from an election, the received wisdom has been small-target strategy. Don’t tell anyone what your policies are until the election is announced, and even then, string them out right up to election day, if you can. If you don’t say what your policies are, the thinking goes, they can’t be attacked.

Dutton, instead, has already shown his daring on energy policy, by openly championing nuclear energy. Now, his Indigenous Affairs spokeswoman, rising party star Jacinta Nampijinpa Price, is laying out a bold policy agenda: one that goes right for the throat of the cosy “progressive” assumptions that failed so miserably, and deservedly so, at the Voice referendum.

Kerre Woodham: More road cones aren't the answer to workplace safety

I know the road cones might seem trivial, but to me, I've always thought they were a metaphor for excessive spending and over-rigorous regulation.

When you looked at road cones, it wasn't a little cherry orange witches hat you saw, it was costs being inflated and people being overly cautious, the wasting of time and money, which was happening across so many government departments. When National referred to road cones during the election campaign, as they did from time to time, I thought they too were using it as a symbol of excess and a symbol of red tape strangling growth. But no, road cones are in fact in the gun.

Lisa Asher, Catherine Sutton-Brady: Supermarket concentration benefits stores, not shoppers.

Supermarket concentration benefits stores, not shoppers. It’s time to split Foodstuffs – not make it stronger

The proposed merger of Foodstuffs North Island and Foodstuffs South Island raises the prospect of even less choice for New Zealanders in what is an already heavily concentrated market. But will regulators prevent it from happening?

New Zealand currently has just three major supermarket entities: the two Foodstuffs cooperatives (member-owned companies) and Australian-owned Woolworths. These three control 85% of the grocery market and almost 100% of the supermarket sector.

John MacDonald: Hey KiwiRail, come clean or be cleaned-up

I think we’ve reached the point where people are going to be asking themselves not only “if I book a ticket on the Interislander, how confident can I be that they won’t cancel on me?” I think we’re at the point now we’re people will also be asking themselves how safe they feel using the service.

I was talking to someone who said after this news about the autopilot on the Aratere the other week, that’s them done with the Interislander and, if they want or need to take a ferry across Cook Strait, it will be Bluebridge all the way.

Friday July 12, 2024 


Friday, July 12, 2024

Professor Robert MacCulloch: Setting the OCR

Should a Key Member of the RBNZ's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) not Turn Up to Set the OCR (During School Holidays)?

Yes, its school holidays at present. The Reserve Bank's MPC meets only several times a year to do the hugely important task of setting interest rates. We're presently in the middle of a recession that, in the words of the RBNZ Governor, was "engineered" by the Bank, costing the livelihoods of millions of Kiwis. The high inflation we're experiencing was largely caused by the RBNZ as it unnecessarily printed $50 billion, flooding NZ with liquidity during 2020-22.

Geoffrey Miller: New Zealand forges deeper ties with NATO

Christopher Luxon is finding his foreign policy feet.

Now eight months into the job, New Zealand’s Prime Minister is in Washington DC this week to attend the NATO summit.

It is the third year in a row that Wellington has been invited to the annual gathering of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the West’s premier political and military alliance.

Cam Slater: Just Sack Them: Off with Their Heads

Top public health officials have been caught red-handed undermining or attempting to undermine the new Government to get its own way. It’s like they never got the memo that the Government had changed or they wilfully ignored it.

Ele Ludemann: Council rates rises unsustainable

The previous government’s Future of Local Government Review was a very sick mongrel which Local Government Minister Simeon Brown has mercifully euthanised.

. . . The previous government initiated the review because its Three Waters and resource management reforms would have stripped local government of responsibility for water assets and planning rights.

“Our government has repealed Labour’s divisive and unpopular reforms and has restored continued local ownership and responsibilities for water services and resource management,” Mr Brown says.

David Farrar: Well done Otago University

The Otago University statement on free speech is stunningly good. The drafts from VUW, Massey and Auckland are full of weasel words that will allow universities to suppress unpopular views. But the Otago one is so good, it should be a template for the other seven universities. Some extracts:

Breaking Views Update: Week of 7.7.24

Friday July 12, 2024 

Youth and iwi leaders at the UN in Geneva discuss indigenous rights

A Māori youth group representative taking part in the UN’s Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous People hopes her trip will inspire other youth to step forward.

Ngā Rangatahi-A-Iwi and Tikanga Pou (National Iwi Chairs Forum) are both making submissions in Geneva on recent changes in Aotearoa.

David Farrar: Why not rename it Ruapehu South?

The Herald reports:

The Herald can reveal the Government is considering a “reconciliation package” to hapū Patutokotoko, after the group raised red flags about the commercialisation of the Tūroa family name on Mount Ruapehu.

Kerre Woodham: Are you starting to feel more confident?

Well, did we get some good news with the Reserve Bank's report yesterday? Not as full as their OCR statement that we're expecting in August, but an update nonetheless. Is the long winter of our financial discontent about to be made glorious summer? Will the Reserve Bank ease its restrictive monetary policy this year so that we don't all have to survive to 25, we can thrive in 25, giving those who are paying mortgages and business loans some respite?

David Farrar: Resistance is futile

Stuff reports:

ACT leader David Seymour says a Ministry of Education decision to shut down a Manawatū kindergarten appears to be “acting against the will of the community”.

In comments made to Stuff, Seymour said he would be asking ministry officials to explain why they were closing Country Kindy, when he met with them on Monday.

Michael Reddell: Flip flop flip flop

The Reserve Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee yesterday delivered their latest OCR review.

In my post on Tuesday, in which I suggested that an OCR cut was appropriate now, I’d noted

ACT's Todd Stephenson on Scrapping the Human Rights Commission

Leah Panapa talks to ACT's Todd Stephenson on the Platform about scrapping the Human Rights Commission.

Click to view

Ele Ludemann: Are the Greens racist?

Are the Greens racist?

. . .Chloe got a bit grumpy when a reporter asked, repeatedly, why the Greens are asking Tana to resign and shunning her in public, when old-mate Julie Anne Genter’s still in the party despite multiple aggressive bullying allegations.

The implication was the Greens must be a bit racist towards Tana cause she’s Māori.

Thursday July 11, 2024 


Thursday, July 11, 2024

Lindsay Mitchell: The failure of Primary Care

In an ageing and growing population, the failure of primary health care in New Zealand is a dire problem. Many general practices are shadows of their former selves. There are too few doctors and too many patients. Many people can't even get enrolled. Those who are enrolled report wait times to see a GP of up to a month. The hours that GPs work have reduced and virtual appointments now seem to be their preference.

Peter Dunne: The Greens moral high horse

The curious case of ex Green MP Darleen Tana raises interesting questions beyond her immediate political future.

Whether she leaves Parliament or stays, her fate is largely settled - her (brief) political career is over. If she goes, she at least has the opportunity of a fresh start, far away from politics. But should she decide to stay, she faces two years of ostracism and scorn from all sides of the House, and limited opportunities to participate in the House's proceedings, in either the Debating Chamber or select committees.