Monday, July 31, 2023
Robertson congratulates the Black Ferns, Mahuta will watch the Silver Ferns – but does govt support help a team’s chances?
How our money is being spent – and misspent – is among the burning questions which Point of Order strives to answer by monitoring the government’s official website.
Today we can record a few projects proudly announced by ministers – but we can’t always tell readers how much is being spent because the ministers haven’t bothered including that information in their press statements.
Another question we like to ask relates to the whereabouts of our busy ministers – and their sporting interests.
So I’ve just been to Sydney last week and I’ve got to go again this week – these are not holiday trips, these are events I’m attending so I’m in and out, but here’s what I can tell you about Australia, it’s going off.
fact result in less revenue.
Sean Plunket talks to Oliver Hartwich from the NZ Initiative on The Platform - Is New Zealand shutting up shop? Lessons that can be learn't from Ireland's robust economy.
In November last year, the NZ Herald’s senior political correspondent Audrey Young broke the news that, “For the first time since MMP began, the former Deputy Prime Minister and New Zealand First leader [Winston Peters] has emphatically ruled out working with a major party.”
Young reported that a reason for Peters’ assertion that he wouldn’t be part of a Labour-led government after this year’s election was because he had been “kept in the dark over the commissioning of He Puapua and what the Three Waters reforms looked like”, which he described as a “secret agenda”.
It was also announced by the International Energy Agency that the world this year is using more coal than ever, and there are no real signs of that changing.
Guterres says a lot of alarmist stuff and my fear is that this sort of language turns people off.
But the main part of my dismay was because exempting fruit and vegetables from GST – or exempting anything else – is seriously bad policy.
It may make sense, but can Labour afford to have Robertson, the politician regarded as most likely to succeed Jacinda Ardern if he’d wanted the role, to make a move at this point? How much more destabilising would it be for an already wobbly Labour Government to lose one of their few competent ministers?
This is despite the fact that the party is bubbling just below the five per cent MMP threshold – mostly around three per cent, but sometimes as high as 4.4 per cent. NZ First’s polling is important, because if the party does manage to get back into Parliament, it will almost certainly mean a change of Government
Sunday July 30, 2023
Sunday, July 30, 2023
On July 4, in Missouri v. Biden, judge Terry A. Doughty issued a broad injunction whose primary function is to prevent the Department of Health and Human Services, the FBI, and multiple other federal agencies from speaking to or meeting with social-media companies for the purpose of “encouraging, pressuring, or inducing in any manner the removal, deletion, suppression, or reduction of content containing protected free speech.” The government has insisted throughout the litigation that its active cooperation with these companies is part of a vital public campaign to stop the spread of “disinformation” on social media, including its efforts to prevent what the Biden administration termed “vaccine hesitancy” on the part of the public.
Ministers for Education from the Australian states have agreed on a major overhaul of teacher education. Their consensus follows a report identifying a range of deficiencies. These include failures to follow scientific evidence on how children learn, to prepare teachers to teach literacy effectively, and to set new teachers up to be capable classroom managers.
The Australian Ministers settled on a top-down solution.
It is a different story when it comes to capital. Our country’s screening regime for foreign direct investment is the most protectionist in the OECD. Where countries like Ireland and Singapore actively pursue foreign investment, it can seem like our Overseas Investment Act is designed to keep it out.
now designated as a voice of the Far Right. That description comes from Massey University professor Mohan Dutta, so carries a spurious air of authority.
I supposed I should be alarmed, but I’m not, for two reasons. One is that academia has so recklessly squandered its credibility that we should pay no more heed to the opinion of a professor of “communication” – least of all an imported zealot from the far Left – than to that of the local barber.
The other is that I’m no longer sure what the Far Right is. The term was once reserved for outfits like the Ku Klux Klan and Britain’s National Front, neither of which was active, still less influential, here.
Saturday July 29, 2023
Saturday, July 29, 2023
People will love coming into the CBD to buy bulky products, such as a microwave, to cart home on the handlebars of their bicycles. Buses are an option too, in between shortages and strike action, but bicycles are better for us. Wind, rain and steep hills heighten the experience.
Delivery firms will love supplying CBD businesses. Motorised roller skates could flourish.
It is said that our first minister of regional development – in the early 1970s – claimed that he wanted all our regions to have above average incomes. Duh! You would expect that there would be some variation in regional incomes. They are probably not large (partly because ours is a small country). They are not measured but we do have estimates of per capita regional domestic production (similar to GDP) which in March Year Ending 2022 ranged from 17 percent above average for the Wellington Region to 34 percent below for Northland. Because of income tax and social security benefits, the income range will be narrower. (Another factor which narrows the income range is that some of the profits of a region will go elsewhere; for instance Taranaki does well on the GDP measure but much of its profits from its hydrocarbon resources do not stay in the province.)
Govt is now gunning for modern slavers – but will strong chains (or other protective measures) keep the registry secure?
Not too long after the government was hailing the launch of its gun registry, the newly created Firearms Safety Authority upset gun owners by accidentally leaking information about them.
As Stuff tells it, the email addresses of 147 firearms licence holders were sent to each other in error, after an email was sent with the recipients’ email addresses pasted into the carbon copy (cc) address field, rather than as a blind carbon copy (bcc).
Having been involved with the political left in my youth and early adulthood, I had the same thoughts as Thomas More [“It continues to amaze me that ideals we used to think of as espoused by the political left have been abandoned by so-called "progressive" activists, freedom being just one of them”] as I read the Halfling's first-rate observations about the devaluation of the concept of freedom (link).
Oliver Hartwich: Economic expert says homeowners are disproportionately feeling cost of living crisis painLabels: Cost of living crisis, Oliver Hartwich
Latest figures from Stats NZ show the average household's cost of living increased 7.2%in the year to June.
The official inflation rate for the period was six percent, but interest payments went up 28%.
Yet problems with how New Zealand’s roads are funded and managed are deeper than even the biggest pothole. And they can’t be patched over with measures like National’s proposed Pothole Repair Fund.
Structural reform is needed.
Here’s one that’ll draw a good belly laugh from BFD readers:
New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has held up his country as one that has successfully embraced reconciliation with its Indigenous people, in a strong signal of trans-Tasman support for the voice referendum.
Perhaps a decade ago, I would have said Chippy was mostly right. Today, though? New Zealand stands, not as a beacon, but a warning: Here there be taniwhas.
You know, like kids, they’ll have a playdate with one of their mates, but they don’t want the party to end and then they want to turn it into a sleepover.
I reckon that’s how Hipkins will have been feeling yesterday when he saw Anthony Albanese’s plane heading down the runway. Or maybe it was US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s plane Hipkins wanted to be on. Because he was in Wellington yesterday too.
A justice minister being arrested is about as bad as it gets for a government going into an election but writing Labour off because of Kiri Allan's downfall could be premature.
Answers to parliamentary questions reveal that in the three years inclusive between 2020 and 2022, there were twenty two accidents involving self-drive ministerial cars.
Saturday July 29, 2023
Te Māngai Pāho And NZ On Air Announce $3m In Co-funding Support Of Māori Regional News Hubs
Irirangi Te Motu | NZ On Air and Te Māngai Pāho (TMP) have confirmed four recipients of funding as part of a co-fund to provide continued support to Māori Regional News Hubs, an initiative providing collaborative news services across 11 Iwi radio stations.
For those interested, here is a letter that was written several months ago to the editor of the New Zealand Herald - which they declined to publish – refusing, by the way, to give a reason.
The public should be aware of proposed changes to our national primary and secondary education curriculum, embedding matauranga Māori (traditional knowledge) throughout the curriculum, probably requiring students of all ethnicities to spend significant class time on Te Reo. Both Te Reo and matauranga Māori should be treasured and preserved, but the changes are excessive.
Coming into force in 2026, the refreshed curriculum will damage the education of millions of students over future decades and impose costs of several billion dollars on taxpayers. A negative consequence will be the effect on every child of substituting time on critical learning with much Te Reo and matauranga Māori. Matauranga Māori is to be accorded equal status with world science, probably taught as truth, and the quality of education and portability of our secondary qualifications will suffer as a result.
Friday July 28, 2023
Friday, July 28, 2023
Jami has since found his true vocation, namely running a brothel although from media accounts he’s even cocked that up given the publicised complaints from his stable.
Although David Parker resigning from Revenue had a touch of the tantrum about it, it had also an element of principle as well.
If you believe in something substantive like wealth tax, and the rug is pulled out from under you, you can do one of two things. One, be like Grant Robertson, ex express disappointment but say you are a team player, grit your teeth, and carry on.
Or two, do a David Parker and walk.
The policy wasn’t a huge surprise. At their election campaign launch a few weeks ago they made it clear their tax reform policy would have a focus on redistributing wealth. So the proposal for a new wealth tax, an increase in income tax for those earning over $200,000, and a tax free threshold for income up to $30,000 are all expected.
Is it the shape of NZ’s future?
The Maori Party has announced a tax policy which – by appealing to low-income groups – could give it a stronger voice in the next Parliament.
The party promises to be “staunch” in coalition negotiations to achieve its tax plan, raising the question: is this the shape of our future tax system?
It’s hard to believe it’s possible, but Labour’s week just got even worse- because their tax policy just got leaked.
Firstly a week on, how quickly we move on. Once we hit the weekend I made a conscious note to keep checking each day on coverage. Who was saying what, how many questions were being asked, and how big a deal this was.
The answer was not that big.
Mātauranga Māori (“MM”, or Māori “ways of knowing”) into New Zealand’s science is reaching ludicrous depths. Even in the U.S.A. we don’t see headlines like the one below. (Note that “complement” is misspelled as “compliment”.)
Why am I so sure this endeavor won’t work? Simply because there is nothing about quantum physics in MM, and I can’t envision any MM-derived insights into the discipline that could advance it beyond what modern physicists are doing already. Of course Māori physicists, like the one below, could well make contributions to quantum mechanics, but it’s hard to see that those insights would come from MM, a mixture of trial-and-error knowledge gained from living (gathering plants and fish), theology, superstition, tradition, and ethics.
Nobody wants to know what “experts” think anymore, because, really, what do experts know? It was experts who told the world that toxic bundles of unredeemable debt were worthy of Triple-A credit-ratings. Experts who advised governments to pursue “herd immunity” from Covid-19. Experts who reassured us that there was absolutely no way that Russia was going to invade Ukraine.
The United States Supreme Court has ruled against a university giving preferential entry on the grounds of race. The Court said the American constitution is colour-blind and prohibits racial preference.
Thursday July 27, 2023
Thursday, July 27, 2023
Seamless trans-Tasman travel was on the agenda for talks between Hipkens and Albanese
The PM and his Minister of Foreign Affairs – reporting on their meetings with big-wigs from abroad – have posted the only two items of fresh news to be found on the government’s official website at time of writing today.
Nanaia Mahuta has given an account of her meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (carefully written in diplomatese and short on te reo – our country is referred to as “New Zealand”, not “Aotearoa”).
This is the third of a series of eight articles exposing some of the myths about New Zealand's History, now being taught to secondary school students.
I was at the supermarket this week and I got to witness first-hand the theft that is taking place on the daily. In fact it’s more than a daily basis; it’s like hourly, according to the checkout operators.
With New Zealand science agencies shy to push the general power and wonder of science, and instead applauding ethnic world views, the science view-point flounders.
The seven University of Auckland academics whose letter to the Listener in July 2021 provoked what a former newspaper editor called "the full, vindictive fury of the woke academic left", weren't just concerned that a government educational working group proposed making science and Maori knowledge of the natural world equivalent in the school science curriculum. They also worried generally about "disturbing misunderstandings of science emerging at all levels of education and in science funding".
I will be voting in my 20th election in October and I consider this to be the most important one in which l have been privileged to take part.
I say that because our country New Zealand has never before faced such a threat to its existence as a sovereign nation built on sacrifice and endeavour rarely seen in a world that too often demands unquestioned obedience from its citizens.
We have become a country that cherishes those hard won freedoms and instilled values yet we are in danger of allowing ideologues, who care little for our heritage or the price we have paid for the position we occupy in our commonwealth of nations, to destroy it all.
Like everything this Government has done since taking office in 2017, their attempts to supposedly address race relations have had the opposite effect to that which was intended.
Affordable housing policies and healthy home initiatives, plus the war on landlords, have seen rents and house prices skyrocket. The only light at the end of the tunnel in that regard is the oncoming train of recession tanking house prices. The recession will deliver yet more bad news for them, countering any positive claims regarding house prices.