178 thoughts on “General debate, May 5, 2013

  1. BJ says “Photonz, the very fact that you regard it as meaningless speaks volumes about your implacable ignorance of the differences. ”

    Stating over and over and over ad nauseum that the government is not a business, is about as meaningless as stating “the government is not a chicken”.

    Because no one has ever claimed that the government is a chicken, or that it is a business.

  2. Photonz, the very fact that you regard it as meaningless speaks volumes about your implacable ignorance of the differences.

    The government is US, governing OURSELVES, as best we can. It suffers neither the limitations nor the freedoms of a business. It is the antithesis of a business.

    Corporations are based on a model that is entirely too close to being sociopathic by definition. Their goal is THEIR well being, and the hell with the society. Government is about the well being of the society, and that only includes businesses where they are good for the society.

    We understand which side you are on.

    We simply object to you attempting to redefine government to suit your perversions.

  3. SPC says “photonz, how are we getting debt levels lower by selling assets that rise in value, we would have a lower net debt level in the future by continuing to own them 100%. ”

    Because asset value has nothing to do with debt.

    If I have a $250,000 mortgage, whether my house goes up or down in value, I STILL have a $250,000 mortgage.

    As I said earlier, the biggest value in the asset sales is getting Kiwis shifting from investing in housing – it’s been strangling the economy for over two decades.

    And why are you worried about loss of dividends with this plan, but not the Greens plan to decimate them?

  4. photonz, how are we getting debt levels lower by selling assets that rise in value, we would have a lower net debt level in the future by continuing to own them 100%.

    Then in addition, the cost of new debt is 3% and the assets earn more than this.

    In business terms it’s stupid, it would be operating a policy that resulted in the lower shareholder value than was possible otherwise and also lower profits and dividends along the way.

  5. BJ says “Government is NOT a business.”

    You are still howling at the moon with your meaningless mantra.

    The government isn’t a charity either, but parts of it need to be run like one, and some things need to be run businesslike manner.

    The government is not a hospital, but parts of it need to be run like one – particularly hospitals.

  6. Government is NOT a business. The only resemblance is superficial, the books have to balance. Even that isn’t quite the same.

    Intake and outgo should match over time for it to be sustainable. This is NOT the case for a business, which has to make a profit.

    The problem with the way Photonz completely misses the point, and the way everyone in the National party misses the point is that by going down that path they also lay open the government to control by big money. Which has taken over.

    The second wrongness is that the government in a democracy has the responsibility to manage the money we provide through taxes to provide the services we require. The problem there is that in a democracy there is always a temptation to over-promise and/or under-tax. However, the government IS us, and we are SUPPOSED to be the beneficiaries of its activities.

  7. SPC says “In which case why not finance the new investment by borrowing rather than selling 49% of the power companies?”

    I actually did virtually the same thing a few years ago. Contact has fairly low dividends and it’s share price wasn’t going up, so I sold my generation asset and paid off debt.

    Greens make false claims that the power generators like Contact are making bigger profits than ever – yet their dividend is still small and the share price is 30% lower than when I sold several years ago.

    And the four years under National the big five have been making on average $340m LESS profit per year than the previous four years under Labour (average profit 09-12 $515m, 05-08 $855m)

  8. In which case why not finance the new investment by borrowing rather than selling 49% of the power companies?

  9. SPC says ‘Only the former Minister for Greece would believe that the debt cost for a country would be the same whether the net debt was 28% or 128%.”

    We’re not talking about a difference between 28% and 128%.

    The difference is more like 28.6% vs 28.3%.

    Did govt bond rates change suddenly because the govt got $1.7b for Mighty River and currently has $1.7b less debt?

  10. photonz1 – SPC does have a point. It pretty much does work the way he describes for government sovereign debt. The better the books are the cheaper it is to finance public debt if you are required to go to an external source (as opposed to self financing via creating money). Not the same as a mortgage.

    Gerrit – a government is not at all like a household – it never really has to live within its means so long as it has the power to print fiat money.

  11. Only the former Minister for Greece would believe that the debt cost for a country would be the same whether the net debt was 28% or 128%.

  12. SPC – just because the value of Mighty River or Genesis goes up or down doesn’t change how much debt the govt owes or the interest rate it pays.

  13. SPC says “photonz, a rising value for assets means that ones net debt falls, and this means a lower debt cost. ”

    No. It doesn’t work that way.

    Just because the value of my house goes up, doesn’t change how much mortgage I have to pay back, or the interest rate.

  14. photonz, a rising value for assets means that ones net debt falls, and this means a lower debt cost.

    Paying national debt at 3%, rather than 5% cost is a significant gain.

  15. BJ,

    A government is not a business, correct.

    It is however representative of the sum total community of ALL households in New Zealand.

    And as such it has to operate, like all households, within the means of its income.

    It has to match (like every household) expenditure with income. Want more expenditure, raise the income. Income too high, spend or bank it.

    So no it is not a like a business that is beholding to the shareholder and that has to take stakeholders view into account.

    But it is beholding to the people, not to return profits, but to run a fiscally and socially responsible balanced household.

    Now we can argue one way or the other if that is being done by this or any previous government.

    That is a more realistic point to start.

    I would say that the New Zealand “state” household has been living for years beyond its income. An income that will not be increased in the future.

  16. bj says “THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT A BUSINESS, IN BUSINESS TO MAKE A PROFIT!!!!! ”

    Your meaningless mantra is doesn’t become less meaningless just because you keep shouting it ad nauseam.

    Unless you want to go the way of Greece and Spain and Portugal, the government needs to balance it’s books.

    The amount of money the govt receives and spends is finite, so parts of govt need to be run in a businesslike manner, and it’s blatantly obvious that other parts can’t be.

    But the government should always strive to get the most they can from taxpayers dollars.

  17. Photonz, to put things in perspective …

    THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT A BUSINESS, IN BUSINESS TO MAKE A PROFIT!!!!!

  18. SPC asks “photonz, as government has no problem borrowing, why sell assets that generate good income and will grow in value? ”

    What’s the point in having something that grows in value, if your policy is to never even use a single dollar of that value.

    As said previously, it won’t produce so much as a single vaccine for a single child.

    It’s a massive waste.

    Ans also as pointed out previously, what you call a good income, is just 1/1000th of govt income. It’s insignificant in the scheme of things.

  19. photonz, as government has no problem borrowing, why sell assets that generate good income and will grow in value?

    Also utilities are not really productive sector investment, unlike investing in new dairy plants turning milk into infant formula

  20. SPC says “You apparently fail to distinguish between assets not intended for sale….”

    Either way it’s not relevant as the govt has no problem borrowing money at low rates.

    Also irrelevant is if the govt pays off debt, or builds non income generating assets like schools, hospitals and roads, which would have otherwise been debt funded. The financial effect is the same.

    The biggest benefit of the asset sales in my view is getting people focused on putting their money into the productive sector which increases New Zealand’s wealth, instead of into houses with increases our debt.

    On that front it’s great news that there are 77,000 new shareholders investing in the NZ stock market. Unfortunately it could have been three times that.

  21. photonz, the government is not repaying debt, it is investing the money in assets that do not generate any income.

    You apparently fail to distinguish between assets not intended for sale and assets that cannot be sold. And a person borrowing against their home to finance their business does not intend to sell their home either.

  22. SPC – to put things in perspective, Mighty River Power had an after tax profit of $68m last year.

    Half of that is $34m, so on a per capita basis, for 4.4m people, that’s $7.73 per person per YEAR, that the govt is losing in profit.

    If it simply uses the $1.7 billion proceeds to pay off debt (or build assets debt free – essentially the same thing) it can save around 5% interest or $85m (so it’s $51m better off).

    So while it loses $7.73 per person per year, it can gain $19.32 per person per year.

    Which is still less than 1/1000th of what it spends per person per year to run the country (around $18,000 per person).

  23. SPC says ‘Banks lend against the value of assets”

    Really?? Think about.

    I can get a business loan with my house as collateral, because if I default, the bank can SELL the house.

    If the assets can never be sold, then they can never be collateral.

    Besides which, the govt collects $60b in tax annually, has over $100b in assets (or is it $200b).

    With that sort of collateral, what bank would be worried about whether they own $1.7b or $3.4b of Mighty River?

  24. Gerrit, the power companies have been (to this point) assets that were not intended for sale, yet could be sold. That could have continued. Lenders and investors in government stock were aware of that – this is why we keep net debt figures and these impact on the credit rating and thus our cost of debt.

    A simple statement that the government might one day sell 50% of the power companies to Kiwi Saver Funds when the tax paid super cost began to impact would have been quite sufficient to reassure those we borrowed from.

  25. photonz, of course there is value to an investor when their assets rise in value … . Banks lend against the value of assets (see my comment about leveraging by rental property landlords) … and different nations have different credit ratings because they have low net levels of debt against their assets.

    PS The government is not financing (vaccination) spending with the asset sales but investing in new assets such as roads – new assets that do not generate dividend flow (thus reducing the future revenue of government) – as part of a deliberate policy to leave future government underfunded and thus reduced in size.

  26. SPC,

    Have to concur with photonz that a not for sale state asset cannot generate a loan from a lender based on the value of the state owned asset. No lender will loan against something that cannot be sold to recoup the loan in case of default.

    The state can borrow against the revenue stream generated by the not for sale asset and as such selling 49% reduces the revenue stream.

    When I took on a business start up loan with the family home as collateral, the lender has an asset it can sell to recoup losses made if I don’t pay principal and interest.

    Cant do that with a not for sale state asset.

  27. SPC says “Yet government, despite having power companies that will rise and value and that earn good dividend returns”

    Under the Green plan, they go DOWN in value and earn SMALLER dividends.

    Anyway, if you have a “never sell” policy, any rise in value of the assets has ZERO value to the NZ taxpayer – it’s wouldn’t provide so much as a single child’s vaccination, even in decades.

  28. On the wider issue of how one finances ones investment and or spending.

    Rental property investors do not sell assets to finance new investment, they leverage – borrow against existing assets to invest in more.

    Yet government, despite having power companies that will rise and value and that earn good dividend returns, instead sells these assets to finance new investment.

    I wonder which of the two is going to retire well and afford their retirement and which is going to struggle to afford its retirement spending?

  29. photonz,

    1. it was National who went ahead with sale knowing that most opposed the sale because they were assets that would grow in value and generated good returns.

    However now the assets are to be reduced to 50% public ownership there is greater good for the many from a lower power price (both residential users and business).

    2. the share market should operate with full disclosure, so Labour and Greens had to inform the market.

    Personally I would have preferred that Labour and Greens adopted the NZ First position of buying back the shares at issue price.

  30. Gerrit, it is hard to know what the PE ratio’s of Meridian and Genesis will be without an indicative share price.

  31. SPC – The Greens frighten off New Zealand investors, then complain about lack of New Zealand investors.

    The Greens sabotage the price of Mighty River, then complain about the price the govt receives.

    The Greens complain about overseas ownership, but the low price caused by their sabotage increased interest from international investors.

    The Greens spend two years saying how great an asset Mighty River is, then say those who bought into it were conned.

    The Greens say we can’t afford to sell because it generates a great income for NZ, then come up with a scheme to destroy that income.

  32. SPC,

    Perhaps another reason might be the hold out for the Contqact and Meridian share issues.

    These companies are a much better investment vehicle then MRP is.

    Just look at the PE ratios.

    If one has limited finances, the better option was to sit tight and wait for the next asset sales.

  33. That half the numbers invested this time compared to Contact in 1999 indicates how little the circumstance of working New Zealanders has “improved” since 1999.

    The young with growing student debt, the old living on super were not expected to invest. And 44% of workers do not have spare income each week to save, and some of the others workers who do have yet to develop a pool of savings for investment.

    So the share float was aimed at well under 50% of adults. So maybe it was 10% of the 30% who had the means to invest who chose to do so.

    That half the numbers invested this time compared to Contact in 1999 indicates how little the circumstance of working New Zealanders has “improved” since 1999.

    3% is less than the number who are in the top tax bracket.

    The next question is how many of the 3% who bought shares will own any shares

    1. at the end of 2013
    2. by the time they receive the share bonus.

    I am picking that only half, 1.5% of adult New Zealanders will receive a share bonus.

  34. Is he really so stupid he expects people to forget he’s just spent two years telling everyone it’s a fantastic asset?

    I do think GreenLab had a point there.

    There was no point the government advertising the part float. GreenLab had already spent two years telling everyone how good it was, so an official advertising campaign was just gilding the lilly at that point :)

  35. Kerry says “North Dakota, Where they do not have whole suburbs of MT houses because the previous owners were underwater.”

    That’s because there is an employment boom due to fracking.

  36. Arana says ‘Norman really has lost the plot: ”

    He’s saying people who have bought Mighty River have been conned.

    Is he really so stupid he expects people to forget he’s just spent two years telling everyone it’s a fantastic asset?

    “Hey Clint”
    “Yes Russel”
    “Did I just do a brain fart”
    “I think it might be more substantive than that”

  37. Norman really has lost the plot:

    http://nz.news.yahoo.com/a/-/top-stories/17076104/greens-label-key-a-con-artist/

    “”Mr John key is the ultimate con artist in New Zealand right now because he tried to con people into buying shares and failed.”Three out of four people who registered for Mighty River Power didn’t go on to buy shares.
    “John Key needs to apologise to New Zealand.”

    So, is Norman expecting everyone to just forget the bombshell he and Shearer dropped during the float process? Is Norman saying people don’t listen to anything he and Shearer says?

  38. North Dakota,
    Where they do not have whole suburbs of MT houses because the previous owners were underwater.
    Where they did not have to spend trillions on bailing the banks out.
    Where banks do not foreclose on owners that are still paying their mortgage.
    Where bank profits contribute to state funding instead of the State having to fund the banks.
    Where the banks could not lose everyone’s money by gambling with it.
    where the banks have a hard job artificially pushing up land prices to increase their profits.

    Terrible isn’t it!

  39. The Greens and Jackal fails to realise –

    1/ The Wolak report doesn’t apply to retail prices – even Wolak says this.

    As Auckland uni say (above) anybody who tries to claim this is being misleading.

    2/ It has ZERO calculation for the cost of building dams, wind farms etc

    3/ When spot prices skyrocket, and the likes of Genesis pays a massive amount more to itself, but doesn’t change it’s retail prices at all, Wolak calculates this as massive overcharging.

    4/ Wolak’s solution to fixing high spot prices when hydro is low, is to massively increase new fossil fuel generation.

  40. Jackal says “which would be just as deluded as saying the Commerce Commission dismissed it. ”

    Commerce Commission says
    “On Wolak’s analysis, any spot prices above virtually zero would demonstrate the excercise of market power. This does not seem to make much sense.”

    Very first sentence in summary says –
    “MED has serious doubts that the Wolak report accurately assesses the extent of market power in the wholesale market in New Zealand”

    Auskland Uni Economics Dept says
    “We also take issue with the interpretation of the Wolak report’s estimate of NZ$4.3 billion in market rents. The media has claimed that this represents a transfer of wealth of NZ$4.3 billion from consumers to generators. This is a misinterpretation of the results of the analysis.”

    “Wolak himself, on p173 note 313, cautions that these figures relate only to the wholesale market. Market rents are a measure of the difference between spot prices and generator costs. Most consumers do not pay these spot prices. “

  41. Kerry says “Here is a pretty good argument for State run banks for starters. From the “communist” State of North Dakota.”

    North Dakota – where no one can get a loan for a house because the state bank doesn’t have enough money and major commercial banks won’t operate there.

    On the positive side, if you own a caravan you can rent it for US$1800 a month.

  42. “I’ve yet to hear one good reason why the state should own anything. ”

    Me neither. Except that sometimes they are less bad at running things than businesses.

  43. What bullshit, Arana.
    The state don’t regulate 100% of the paintings on my wall. Neither do they get to regulate my wife’s engagement ring.

    How about ownership of the Police, judiciary and defence force? Any compelling reason why those functions should be privatised?

  44. Because a healthy and thriving private sector has never existed, anywhere, without the support of State provided infrastructure, rule of law and social cohesion.

  45. I’ve yet to hear one good reason why the state should own anything.

    They get to regulate (control) 100% of all assets, private or otherwise, and tax the upside at 30% with absolutely no risk and no money down.

  46. Your comprehension skills really could not be that poor

    A compelling argument, certainly.

  47. I was somewhat amused at the response from National MPs today when Dr Russel Norman mentioned the Wolak report… They looked like stunned mullets.

    Simon Bridges fumbled around for an explanation as to why the report was wrong, finally saying that Wolak used methods from other countries that were irrelevant to New Zealands situation. Um! Wasn’t the report specifically concerned with New Zealand power companies? With such a stupid answer, I wonder if Bridges has bothered to read the report at all.

    Obviously the idiot Minister of Energy and Resources wasn’t aware of what Jerry Brownlee said when the Wolak report was released:

    The Commission’s analysis, based on work by Stanford University Professor Frank Wolak, suggests that over six and a half years the generators have used that market power to earn $4.3 billion more than what should have been the case.

    The Commission says that the most likely explanation of increasing retail prices is the effect of increased wholesale prices.

    “These findings are disturbing”, said Gerry Brownlee. “They confirm the opinion of many that they have paid too much for their power bills over the last few years”, he said.

    “I acknowledge that Professor Wolak’s methodology will be criticised by the generators and by others as being inappropriate for the New Zealand electricity market.

    “However, there is little doubt in my mind that the Commerce Commission is correct in assessing that, at the very least, there are serious systemic issues arising out of the current market structure, market design and market rules that provide the generators with the ability and incentive to exercise market power at various times”, said Mr Brownlee.

    Bridges has stupidly contradicted what Jerry Brownlee said when he was the Minister of Energy. Effectively National agreed with the report when it was convenient, but are now disagreeing with it because they’ve basically done nothing to fix the problem. They’ve done nothing to ensure power companies using market power aren’t ripping off consumers.

    Now I’m sure photonz1 will be along any second now to argue against what Brownlee said in May 2009. Perhaps he will even say that Brownlee slammed the report, which would be just as deluded as saying the Commerce Commission dismissed it. Come back from planet Key photonz1, before it’s too late.

  48. I’m wondering if BJ could tell us why the sale of some state assets is “immoral” and “theft”, whereas others are not.

    After two years of discussion are we really going to start at the beginning again? Arana you are, like photo, a troll. Your comprehension skills really could not be that poor.

  49. BJ is totally correct in this case.

    Infrastructure is not “just assets”.

    And, why should we worry about shareholders asset values and income. When they are privatised!

  50. In Australia, it barely raises an eyebrow.

    http://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/queensland-set-asset-sales-210910216.html

    “With Queensland state debt expected to reach around $80 billion in the next year, investment bankers are clamouring to help the government off-load some of its remaining valuable public assets.
    Ex-Treasurer Peter Costello has just handed down his audit report which he was commissioned to oversee to the Queensland government. Included in the audit were recommendations suggesting the privatisation of many assets to help shore up the sunshine state’s finances. Major assets that Costello earmarked are reported to include the state’s electricity generation, transmission and distribution network and the ports of Townsville and Gladstone”

    I’m wondering if BJ could tell us why the sale of some state assets is “immoral” and “theft”, whereas others are not. Should we still own a state hotel chain, for example? Was the sale of same immoral? Is it immoral not to buy another one? Why must we own a hotel chain? Should we always hold “state owned anything”, even if it presents a higher opportunity cost?

  51. BJ becomes even more extreme “You and National as a party, are such bloody handed thieves and immoral goddammed bastards at this point that you don’t even understand right and wrong. You know you didn’t fucking win an election on Asset sales and you sure as fuck know that you’ll lose any referendum put on it. ”

    The government buys and sells billons of dollar of assets every year through ACC and NZ Super Fund – not a whimper about that.

    It’s laughable that you fake being upset about it, when the Green Party policy will destroy the asset values and income – WITHOUT even getting paid billions in return.

  52. Gregor. It is even less moral for a small minority, only 140 with a conscience vote, even if they are in Government, to decide moral matters for 4 million.

    Anyway, Selling assets built up by us over generations so that only a few can profit from gouging us for power forever, IS A MORAL matter.

  53. If you can’t persuade at least 60% of the voting public, on any one issue, then the chances are your view is, more than likely, wrong!

    Research shows that BCIR decisions turn out to be correct more often than those of politicians, but “even if we are wrong, it is our decision to make”. What right has a few, effectively 5 or 6 people, in parliament have to dictate to the rest of us.

    The other thing is if a public decision turns out not to work then the public is more likely to admit it is not working and reverse it.
    Unlike politicians who still cannot admit the obvious massive fuckup that was past asset sales.

    How much of our deficit is due to profits and interest going offshore again? Considering that tradeables have been mostly in surplus.

  54. Gerrit

    What is clear to me is that for the last 30 years we have had a parliament where the primary function of the treasury bench warmers is to legislate laws that are virtually impossible for any future government to change easily.

    I don’t think that’s really the case Gerrit. Most of parliaments time is spent trying to fix previous legislative failures or changing the decisions of previous governments outright.

    God nows how much all that back and forwards is costing us taxpayers. What we actually need is some stability within our political landscape… Not just a bunch of politicians with vested interests promoting policy that only benefits certain sectors of the community.

    We need policy that’s devised from unbiased research and not driven by ideological rubbish like what photonz1 and other National propagandists often try to promote.

  55. Gregor – that’s totally lame – The Green Party completely ignored the referendum when they didn’t like the overwhelming result.

    So you don’t agree with the distinction between moral/legal matters and commercial ones for the purposes of referendum?

  56. Jackal

    It’s actually a lot worse than that. National only had support from 24% of New Zealanders.

    That is my point regarding “mandates”

    Under MMP there is no such thing as a “mandate”. Therefore you will always have policy enacted by any government (left, right, centre.) that does not have a voters “mandate”.

    What is clear to me is that for the last 30 years we have had a parliament where the primary function of the treasury bench warmers is to legislate laws that are virtually impossible for any fuure government to change easily.

    Think WFF, Student Loan Scheme, NZRail purchase, SuperCity Auckland, etc., etc.

    NZPower fits into that category.

    Only one undone was the relatively easy ACC privitisation.

  57. Make referendums binding.

    Until such time, they are just seen as political campaigns, which the main party then ignores.

    Make it so, Greens. Make it policy. Make it a condition of a deal with Labour. But you’re not serious enough about them to hand some of your power back to the people, are you.

    Why not? It would likely be an election winner.

  58. It’s actually a lot worse than that. National only had support from 24% of New Zealanders.

    So Labour never had a mandate for any of their policies, then? And if GreenLab doesn’t get well over 50%, then they won’t have a mandate either?

  59. The cause of the failed referendum wasn’t a supposed “comedy signature army”.

    The error rate was reportedly running 30%. Therefore, at least 450-500K signatures would have been needed to be on the safe side.

    Also, collectors needed to be more diligent. There are numerous accounts floating around about how loose this process was:

    http://yournz.org/2013/05/08/did-david-farrar-sabotage-the-asset-petition/

    “I signed the petition in the Labour party Hamilton office in Te Rapa.
    I was told to only sign my name and date of birth. And they want to run the country when they can’t even get a form filled out properly. Good work, front desk nobody”

  60. Now you’re saying it’s the Greens who provided 100,000 illegitimate signatures

    No, I’m not. What’s happened is you’ve misinterpreted something I said.

    The point – which I thought was clear – was that if one lowers the bar by engaging in media jamming as a political stunt, then don’t act all surprised when others do it.

  61. Gerrit. I am all for binding referenda.

    It is no accident that Switzerland is one of the most stable, peaceful and successful polities.

    It should be Green policy.

    The threshold for them should also be more realistic.

    Politicians cynically made the threshold for referenda 10% of the population knowing that, the logistics alone of, obtaining that many signatures would make them almost impossible.

    Sue Bradford went way down in my estimation when she called everyone that disagreed with her “child bashers”. The arrogant mis-characterisation, of anyone who dared to mildly disagree with her, was no more pretty, than the family fist mob..

    Judging by the referendum results the majority do not believe in bashing kids, but think that a smack may be a better alternative than a child sticking utensils in power points.

    The antics, and sloganeering, of both extremes in that issue basically shut down rational debate. Both extremes, were judged wrong by most of the public.

    In fact the politicians did listen to the public.
    No smacking under any circumstances was changed to allow sufficient physical force to prevent children hurting themselves and others or to prevent them doing something which is otherwise illegal. Which I believe most people would agree are justification, the only ones, for using physical force on children, or adults.

    While RW politicians seem willing to follow the public on social issues, anything which affects the bottom line of their party funders is verboten.
    They are fine with us having a say on anything, but those issues that affect their employment in the private sector after politics.

    In other words, do what you like so long as you cannot stop us, and our mates, stealing!

  62. bjchip

    Not to put too fine a point on it too, the bragging done by some National Supporters about having signed multiple times with invalid signatures indicates precisely which party has a dishonest and treasonous approach to governance.

    Yep! I’ve got to wonder when exactly honesty started to not matter to New Zealanders. I also sometimes wonder where all National’s supporters come from, because where I live they are few and far between.

    Gerrit

    “Mandate” (if defined as getting 50%+ of the vote) is no longer applicable in an MMP environment.

    It’s actually a lot worse than that. National only had support from 24% of New Zealanders. Because of the way the system discriminates, those who will be most affected from these asset sales will have little or no say in the matter at all… Apart from being able to sign a petition that is.

    I find it somewhat concerning that the idiot David Farrar is still going on about young people signing the asset sales petition. Anybody can sign a petition and Farrar trying to say otherwise is yet another clear cut case of the right wing being dishonest!

    Arana

    Fake stickers on billboards during election campaign
    Fake signatures on forms during referendum campaign

    Weren’t you just implying that it was people who opposed the referendum that were providing fake signatures on the petition? Now you’re saying it’s the Greens who provided 100,000 illegitimate signatures. Perhaps you should work on getting your story straight there Arana before blurting out your rubbish on frogblog.

  63. Fake stickers on billboards during election campaign
    Fake signatures on forms during referendum campaign

    As ye sow, so shall ye reap.

  64. MMP is our system of government
    MMP delivered National the right to enact its policies
    National campaigned on this policy
    Labour and The Greens campaigned strongly against it
    The public voted
    They voted for National to enact their policies

    End of story.

  65. Sorry – I was just back from hearing the Prime Prevaricator lying about the Referendum… I reckon my anger levels peaked only about 2 minutes before posting :-)

    Certainly I would regard referenda as binding… but there are some conditions. There would have to be more certain rules relating to how they are drafted and perhaps there’s a need for the margin being more than 0.1% to be BINDING. There is also a definite need for an ACTUAL Constitution/Bill-of-Rights and a legal test of the referendum conforming with that Constitution… but yes. With those conditions/caveats…

    The key to making society work in a JUST way is that the rights of the minority are protected while the will of the majority is implemented.

    That’s what is missing just now. The rights of ordinary citizens in this country are significantly curtailed by those with the wealth to do so. In the case of the asset sales those as have money are eagerly awaiting the chance to make more by getting hold of “ownership” of things that are in fact and part MINE.

    The weakness of Greens/Labour IS in fact one of the categories of failure that I pointed out would eventuate from the advocacy/support of S59 and that fallout continues to this day. The political blind spot that serves idealists as a compass did us no good whatsoever. Nor did it do any more good for the kids than a better law might have done. I have the utmost respect for ideals, but they HAVE to be tempered by reality.

  66. BJ,

    Take a chill pill, bust a valve you will the way you are carrying on.

    it is an interesting conundrum this “mandate” objection the Greens are raising.

    Under MMP (not saying get rid off, just pointing out an anomaly) it will be certain that no political party or collective of parties will ever get over the 50% “mandate” votes gained level.

    I really dont have a problem per se that National won the treasury benches and are governing as they promised to do in their policies.

    Just as I dont have a problem if in 2014 the Labour/Greens institute NZPower even if they only get 49% of the vote to gain the treasury benches.

    “Mandate” (if defined as getting 50%+ of the vote) is no longer applicable in an MMP environment.

    Referendums are a waste of time if the end result (ignored by the government of the day) is a forgone conclusion.

    Make then binding to be worthwhile.

    Then we have real democracy. And you can relax, without the need for chill pills, in the full knowledge that the peoples wishes are fulfilled.

    What is the Greens position on binding referendum? I cant find any reference in the policies.

    Though judging by this the Greens may be following the wishes of NZConservative and NZFirst in making binding referendums a perogative of proper democratic government.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1203/S00048/labour-and-greens-now-supporting-binding-referendums.htm

    Policy winner there BJ, for the Greens.

    But will they go as far as giving people the power?

    mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

  67. Not to put too fine a point on it too, the bragging done by some National Supporters about having signed multiple times with invalid signatures indicates precisely which party has a dishonest and treasonous approach to governance. Goddammed lying assholes.

  68. Photonz – If two kids inherit a house from their parents, which one has the right to sell it? You and National as a party, are such bloody handed thieves and immoral goddammed bastards at this point that you don’t even understand right and wrong. You know you didn’t fucking win an election on Asset sales and you sure as fuck know that you’ll lose any referendum put on it.

    I’ve had my go at this party over S59 , yet that was passed with National and Labour agreeing to it. Even though the public of NZ regarded it as a bad idea. Politics – Strange Bedfellows and all that. However, that was nothing compared to this.

    We should have simply HAD the referendum. Any honest government would recognize that. I’ve canvassed 2 blocks in the 20 I can reach to get over 100 signatures. I had 90% signing it. I have no doubt I can pull in more, all it takes is a bit more of my time.

    On this point you are being dishonest, and it simply disgust me.

  69. photonz, using a referendum as a mandate to validate the policy option of renationalising the power companies is good democratic politics. So Greens and Labour should state this is the purpose of it (and form a coalition with NZ First on this issue). Those parties citing the smacking referendum to validate their policy on this are free to do the same.

  70. Gregor – that’s totally lame – The Green Party completely ignored the referendum when they didn’t like the overwhelming result.

    It’s laughable that NOW they think people should take even the slightest notice of theirs.

  71. Jakckal says “They agree with Wolak,”

    Did you actually READ their report – it rips Wolak to pieces.

    It’s funny that you stick up for Wolak, and the Green Party is using his report.

    When his solution is to start building new fossil fuel plants.

  72. Not really, photonz1.

    The difference being, while the GP might have instituted the repeal of S59 it was a Labour government that enacted it. It didn’t matter what the GP representatives felt – they had only limited power to alter the Bill’s progression, not even being a junior partner in government.

    Also the repeal was a conscience vote I believe, so the framing was quite different.

    Further, comparing a fundamental human rights issue to a commercial one doesn”t really work. To create a moral equivalence on the issue is a bit silly.

  73. The reason the referendum is pointless, is that the greens have already shown with the anti-smacking referendum, that they think democratic referendums have ZERO value – not worth the paper they’re printed on.

    That the Greens think that NOW their own referendum should be taken seriously, after they dismiss referendums they disagree with, is totally laughable.

  74. “BTW – feel free to spell ‘**** up’ in full – it’s a phrase derived from typography, no need to be coy about it.”

    I just quoted your post – without the **** – and got put in a moderation queue.

    So it’s your moderator being coy.

  75. BTW – feel free to spell ‘cock up’ in full – it’s a phrase derived from typography, no need to be coy about it.

    I’ve been put in a moderation queue for it in the past.

  76. The election wasn’t just about asset sales Arana, don’t you know

    Labour made it all about the asset sales. That’s how out of touch these clowns are.

    Are you saying that people are deliberately putting false signatures on the petition in order to undermine it?

    If people want to pull “clever” cr*p like getting the taxpayer to pay for their party political broadcasts wrapped up as “citizens” initiated referendum, then they can expect a sh*tfight, down in the gutter.

    They shouldn’t act all surprised and innocent. They get back what they give out and in this instance, they got owned.

  77. Arana

    If that was the case National would not have won the election.

    The election wasn’t just about asset sales Arana, don’t you know. I was obviously referring to polling specifically concerning asset sales, which on average shows that 70% of those polled don’t want our SOE’s partially privatised.

    especially given the “amusing name army” will still be out in force.

    What exactly does that mean? Are you saying that people are deliberately putting false signatures on the petition in order to undermine it? If that’s the case Arana, who do you think might organize such a dastardly deed and how much are they paying?

  78. Labour and Greens need to signal that they will buy back shares at the government sale price, so those who buy on the market later have this disclosure

    Great. Nothing like having your total risk underwritten by the taxpayer.And if the price is higher, then you’ll face huge legal battles whilst undermining investment in NZ.

  79. Considering that every poll undertaken shows that a huge majority of New Zealanders don’t want them sold, I think you’re dead wrong Arana.

    If that was the case National would not have won the election. If that were the case, you would have had a few million signatures.

    But by all means continue. 16500 legitimate signatures will be a lot of fun, huh, especially given the “amusing name army” will still be out in force. Best aim for 100K plus….

  80. Arana

    Any referendum will come across as pointless. The return is likely to be low.

    Considering that every poll undertaken shows that a huge majority of New Zealanders don’t want them sold, I think you’re dead wrong Arana.

  81. Labour and Greens need to signal that they will buy back shares at the government sale price, so those who buy on the market later have this disclosure.

    Given TPP terms on information to the market this may be important. It would enable them to have a mandate to accept any NZ First term for their policy to be part of coalition policy.

    PS The number of signatures discounted is usually c25%. They were for the smacking one – that passed by a large margin. There are advantages to having the referendum with the 2014 election – a larger turnout and it places this policy alternative directly before voters. Thus the importance to have the buy back policy in play.

  82. That could be good news, photonz1.
    Flush out the speculators on a buyers market. Local funds should gain an advantage on depressed prices.

    To paraphrase Rothschilds advice for the brave investor “When there is panic on the streets, buy”.

  83. Well Arana, when the Greens and Labour do show signs of dying in a ditch, you might have a point. Otherwise you are just another right-wing ranter forever predicting the demise of the left, which gets a bit ridiculous after a few decades.

    BTW – feel free to spell ‘cock up’ in full – it’s a phrase derived from typography, no need to be coy about it.

  84. considering there’s a couple of months to find 16,500 unique signatures and re-submit the petition

    You’d think they’d know when the battle is lost. It was actually lost at the election.

    From this point in, it’s just one embarrassment after another. Asset sales will have been all but completed. Any referendum will come across as pointless. The return is likely to be low.

    By all means – continue.

  85. photonz1

    It is slammed by – Commerce Commission

    Your argument has become a bit silly photonz1. I’ve just linked to what the Commerce Commission said. They agree with Wolak, saying there are “substantial wealth transfers from consumers to producers” because of market power, potential price fixing and a lack of proper competition. Did you perhaps mean MED?

    Likewise Canterbury University doesn’t “slam” the report at all. They simply disagree with some aspects of it. In fact they say; “his methodology of examining the slopes of residual demand curves to determine ability and incentive to influence market clearing prices” is correct.

    There is no question that power prices have been artificially inflated.

    That’s a huge number of invalid signatures – how does that compare to previous petitions?

    Far more than is usual I would hazard a guess… Something really stinks about this. However the headline is a bit misleading, considering there’s a couple of months to find 16,500 unique signatures and re-submit the petition.

  86. My sharebroker is already scheduling meetings with clients to relook at allocations and weightings between NZ and other markets.

    Mine is, too. Many are, I understand.

    I still don’t know if GreenLab truly understand what they’ve done.

  87. Gregor says “It’s now caveat emptor.”

    Yes – invest in New Zealand at your own risk.

    My sharebroker is already scheduling meetings with clients to relook at allocations and weightings between NZ and other markets.

  88. I tend to agree. The battle is probably already won with the NZ Power announcement. It’s now caveat emptor.

  89. How long will GreenLab continue to die in the ditch over an issue most NZers seemingly either support or couldn’t give a toss about? You would think the election result suggested this wasn’t a defining issue.

    It’s impossible to argue most NZers are against this when they can’t even get a 300K petition together. What an A-grade, certified co*k up.

  90. Arana says “Gosh. 16,500 short. ”

    Meaning over 100,000 signatures were invalid. (of 393,000 signatures, 292,000 were valid, which is 16,500 short of 308,000 required).

    That’s a huge number of invalid signatures – how does that compare to previous petitions?

  91. Considering they changed their mind about saving the assets and the income they generate, the “save the assets” campaign as all totally pointless

  92. “The Green/Labour petition opposing asset dales has failed. Despite the thousands of dollars of taxpayers money the Green/Labour parties threw at this petition it has failed, coming up 16,500 signatures short.”

    Gosh. 16,500 short.

    That’s a lot.

  93. kerry asks “Why do you support? ..The selling of assets which will earn income way beyond the selling price for decades to come.”

    Why do you support destroying the value of the assets and their income with the Green power plan?

  94. Auckland University “Economics” department.

    You like those Neo-Liberal religious orders ideas, don’t you, Photo.

    Try reading Steve Kean, who actually did predict the GFC. Not the twits, who call them selves economists, who said it would never happen again.

    You do realise, Photo, that following the ideas of “conventional Freidmanite economists is what is landed most of the world in the poo.

    Just as well for our exports to China, the ones that you keep prattling about, that China ignores them.

  95. Here is a list for the resident RWNJ’s.

    Why do you support?
    The selling of assets which will earn income way beyond the selling price for decades to come.
    Loss of control of Essential infrastructure.
    Higher power prices making our export businesses less competitive.
    Higher costs for all other business.
    Increase in our current account deficit from even more offshoring of profit and interest.
    Even more money lost/borrowed to playing financial games with existing assets, rather than investment in the new sustainable productive business and infrastructure we need.

    Supporting that takes either greed or blind ideological stupidity.

  96. You’re still confused Jackal – Wolak’s report isn’t even about consumer prices.

    It is slammed by –
    – Commerce Commission
    – Auckland Uni Economics Dept
    – Canterbury University
    – Concept Economics (Australia)
    – Concept Consulting (NZ).

    Because the actual spot price was compared to a price system that –
    1/ allowed electricity to be imported from another country/sate (not possible in NZ)
    2/ took no account of the cost to build dams,wind farms, geothermal. (i.e. considered the cost of producing power from renewables at virtually zero)
    3/ took no consideration that the companies BUYING at high spot prices were the SAME companies SELLING at high spot prices which means for the vast majority of electricity, spot price is totally irrelevant. It has “zero net effect”.

    As Auckland University Economic Dept says, anybody claiming that consumers were overcharged $4.3b, is misrepresenting what Wolak said.

    This is clearly what you are doing – misrepresenting a report on spot prices, and falsely claiming it is about retail prices.

  97. photonz1

    Jackal – you’re totally confused about the Wolak report.

    It’s not even about CONSUMER PRICES.

    Every time you say consumers were being overcharged, you are falsifying what Wolak reports.

    I’m not confused at all photonz1. Here’s what the Commerce Commission found:

    This report provides three lines of evidence consistent with the view that Contact, Genesis, Meridian and Mighty River Power have both the ability and incentive to exercise unilateral market power, and that this exercise of unilateral market power has resulted in substantial wealth transfers from consumers to producers during certain time periods from, 1 January 2001 to 30 June 2007.

    [...]

    The Commission has conducted a preliminary analysis of the trends in wholesale and retail prices over the sample period. Professor Wolak’s analysis provides suggestive evidence on the extent to which retail prices have increased in order to cover higher wholesale prices that were caused by the exercise of market power.

    That clearly means consumers were being overcharged.

    The retail price trends in Figure 10 reflect the smoothing approach used by the retailers in setting their prices, that is, they do not raise retail prices immediately to reflect higher wholesale prices, nor lower them when wholesale prices are low. The smooth, upward trend in retail prices presented in Figure 10 indicates changes in the underlying cost components and/or margins are gradually passed through into higher retail prices over an extended time period.

    Obviously wholesale prices affect retail prices photonz1. The Wolak report indicates that consumers were overcharged by approximately 18% between 2001 and 2007. Labour and the Greens propose to reduce power bills by at most 7%, and photonz1 screams like a banshee that NZ Power will destroy power companies. What an idiot!

  98. BTW:

    Perhaps Gareth, and other commentors, would now like to revise their position:

    http://blog.greens.org.nz/2013/04/12/boarder-threats-now-in-3d/

    See:

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2013/05/05/meet-the-liberator-test-firing-the-worlds-first-fully-3d-printed-gun/

    “Unlike the original, steel Liberator, though, Wilson’s weapon is almost entirely plastic: Fifteen of its 16 pieces have been created inside an $8,000 second-hand Stratasys Dimension SST 3D printer…The group’s initial success in testing the Liberator may now silence some of its technical naysayers, too. Many skeptics (include commenters on this blog) have claimed that no plastic gun could ever handle the pressure and heat of detonating an ammunition cartridge without deforming or exploding. But Defense Distributed’s design has done just that. After the test-firing I witnessed, Wilson showed me a video of an ABS plastic barrel the group printed attached to a non-printed gun body firing ten rounds of .380 ammunition before breaking on the eleventh”

  99. Jackal – you’re totally confused about the Wolak report.

    It’s not even about CONSUMER PRICES.

    Every time you say consumers were being overcharged, you are falsifying what Wolak reports.

    From Auckland Uni Economics Dept –

    “We also take issue with the interpretation of the Wolak report’s estimate of NZ$4.3 billion in market rents. The media has claimed that this represents a transfer of wealth of NZ$4.3 billion from consumers to generators. This is a misinterpretation of the results of the analysis.

    Wolak himself, on p173 note 313, cautions that these figures relate only to the wholesale market”

    From
    http://www.interest.co.nz/news/44904/auckland-academics-question-wolak-report-power-profit-gouging

  100. photonz1

    Jackal – I love it when you make snarky comments … when YOU don’t even realise you’ve scored a massive own goal by linking to a MED report

    Your argument was:

    Interesting that they also falsely claim the Wolak report says electricity consumers have been overcharged $4.3b over 6 years.

    I linked to documents that show that’s exactly what the Wolak report said. I must say that it’s not much fun debating somebody that’s so inherently dishonest as yourself photonz1.

    Despite you believing their argument is robust enough to claim Wolak is entirely wrong, MED admit to not knowing exactly what methodology was used to reach the conclusion that electricity consumers have been overcharged $4.3b over 6 years.

    You also state:

    Even Wolak himself said the figures did not apply to retail customers.

    I find this hard to believe… Can you link to where Wolak actually has said that photonz1, and the report in question for that matter?

    It appears the Commerce Commission has removed the report from their website after the Greens have linked to it with their discussion paper. I have however found the Commerce Commission’s Investigation Report (PDF) into the matter, which states:

    The Commission’s investigation began in late 2005 following a number of complaints and
    concerns about the electricity wholesale and retail markets, regarding the alleged abuse of market power, low levels of competitive activity in the markets, the potential for collusion, high electricity prices and increasing company profits. The Commission’s investigation has involved gathering both quantitative and qualitative evidence on market behaviour, market interactions, and market outcomes. Quantitative analysis prepared for the Commission forms the principal basis for the finding that each of Contact, Genesis, Meridian and Mighty River Power periodically have had, and have exercised, market power.

    They’ve also found that the current system inhibits new competition:

    The Commission has found there are significant barriers into the generation market that make entry difficult for new generators, increasing the ability of the incumbents to exercise market power. Consistent with this view, new independent entry into the market on a scale that would cause a change in incumbents’ behaviour has not occurred.

    The Commission has considered all the evidence in reaching a view both on whether market power is held, and on whether market participants may have breached Part 2 of the Commerce Act. It considers that there is strong evidence that each of the largest four suppliers into the wholesale market – Contact, Genesis, Meridian and Mighty River Power – have a substantial degree of market power.

    The Commission also considers that these four companies have exercised their market power, for substantial periods, by offering their generation output into the wholesale market at prices above those that they would have offered under competitive conditions. The periodic and recurring nature of these bouts of high prices, together with high entry barriers, means that potential entry has not been able to provide a constraint on the exercise of market power.

    That means the Commerce Commission has concluded that consumers have been overcharged.

    You also claim that:

    the Economic Development Report you link to rubbishes both Wolak’s method and conclusion in the very first bullet point on the very first page.(as do Auckland University and Canterbury University).

    However that’s not the case, with Canterbury University largely agreeing with Wolak’s findings:

    2.5 Summary.

    The four critiques above overwhelmingly point in the direction that the estimate of market power in the Wolak report is too high, but they don’t provide an alternative measure. There still remains the other strands of empirical evidence in the report that are also consistent with the high prices in dry years being the result of market power.

    This leads the authors of the NZIER discussion document prepared for the Major
    Electricity User’s Group (NZIER, 2009), to comment:

    Wolak’s analysis has drawn a lot of criticism, not all of it valid. Most criticisms have been directed at the way in which he constructs competitive benchmark prices and thereby estimates market power rents. Criticism of this additional step in his analysis does not detract from the earlier steps in his methodology of examining the slopes of residual demand curves to determine ability and incentive to influence market clearing prices. This basic methodology is well-established and widely recognised and applied worldwide to assess competition in short-term wholesale markets.

    Most of the reports I’ve read agree that consumers are being overcharged… The only disagreement seems to be concerned with how much that overcharging actually is. You’re welcome to provide a report that shows consumers aren’t being overcharged photonz1, if you can find one?

  101. I hope Greens support subsidised transport for tertiary students in Wellington as in Auckland.

    This subsidy will enable some students to stay at home with parents in the wider region and travel into the city (the cost of travel into Wellington discourages this). This will reduce demand for rental accommodation in the capital and thus reduce cost of flatting – for students and others on low incomes.

    With the removal from housing stock of units seen as below earthquake safety standard this move is increasing in importance.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/wellington/8638328/Bus-fares-aren-t-fair-says-student

  102. Jackal – I love it when you make snarky comments ….

    “So where does that leave your claim photonz1… Was the Ministry of Economic Development also lying? You poor deluded fool!”

    …when YOU don’t even realise you’ve scored a massive own goal by linking to a MED report that….

    1/ absolutely slams your claim
    2/ has a report from an Australian research company that absolutely slams your claim
    3/ has a report from a NZ company research company that absolutely slams your claim.

    The Commerce Commission points out the ridiculousness of Wolak’s method with a “thought experiment”.

    Even if we spent billions on new hydro, solar and wind generation, and had a 100% renewable system, any electricity cost above zero would be considered overcharging using Wolaks method.

    That’s because the water, wind and sun are free, and Wolak takes zero consideration of the cost of building or replacing the asset.

    This is a critical omission they say, when for most of the last decade we’ve needed to build generation equivalent of a new West Wind (at a cost $450m) every ten months.

  103. The $4.3b overcharging as claimed by the Greens was previously also slammed by The Department of Economics at the University of Canterbury as having “no logical basis”.

    Wolak compared the actual spot prices to a cheaper price system that –

    a/ unlike NZ, wasn’t required to cover the cost of building generation, replacing assets, and building new generation.

    b/ unlike NZ, onsold power to other companies, rather than onselling to the same company (for which high or low spot prices have a zero net effect).

    As they also said, consumer prices are not even directly influenced by spot prices.

  104. Jackal –

    1/ the Economic Development Report you link to rubbishes both Wolak’s method and conclusion in the very first bullet point on the very first page.(as do Auckland University and Canterbury University)

    2/ You also falsely say it finds consumers were being overcharged, when Wolak himself specifically says it doesn’t apply to consumers.

    3/ It applies to high spot prices during dry periods, and as companies sold at the high price as a generator, then bought off themselves at the same high price as a retailer, it was had “zero net effect”. When spot prices temporarily peaked massively above normal, retail prices didn’t change change – they stay exactly the same.

    Effectively, if a company is selling electricity to itself, the spot price is irrelevant. i.e. If I sell my car to myself, whether I charge myself $1, $10,000, or $100,000, I have a “zero net effect”.

    4/ Hence the claim by Greens that generators overcharged by $4.3 billion is total nonsense (their total profit for the period wasn’t even $4.3b), and this claim has been known to be total nonsense for years – see (from four years ago)

    http://www.interest.co.nz/news/44904/auckland-academics-question-wolak-report-power-profit-gouging

  105. photonz1

    Interesting that they also falsely claim the Wolak report says electricity consumers have been overcharged $4.3b over 6 years.

    This looks like a straw man argument again photonz1… Wolak has provided a number of reports… Which report exactly are the Greens referring to?

    I ask because the link they provide in their discussion paper to the commerce commission says the page cannot be found… Perhaps you could be right photonz1 and they’re lying?

    But hang on a second… A simple two second search on google turns up numerous reports backing up the Greens claim that Wolak et al found that consumers were being overcharged $4.3 billion over 6 years… Here’s one of them:

    The report, using analysis by Stanford University professor Frank Wolak, looked at wholesale prices every half-hour during a six-year period.

    “Professor Wolak estimated that the wholesale prices charged over the period 2001 to mid-2007 resulted in an extra $4.3b in earnings to all generators over those that they would have earned under competitive conditions,” it found.

    Prices were on average 18 per cent higher than they would have been if the wholesale market had been more competitive and the four big generators Meridian, Mighty River Power, Genesis and Contact Energy had not been able to exert market power.

    But I guess the Dominion Post might be lying eh photonz1, because we all know they’ll report anything to support the Greens.

    Also, here’s an Economic Development report (PDF) that also confirms Wolak found consumers were being overcharged $4.3 billion between 2001 and 2007.

    So where does that leave your claim photonz1… Was the Ministry of Economic Development also lying? You poor deluded fool!

  106. Jackal – so they’ve explained how they will extract $750m of savings from $488m of profits and leave the companies with a “reasonable profit”

    Yeah right. Soooo believable.

    Interesting that they also falsely claim the Wolak report says electricity consumers have been overcharged $4.3b over 6 years.

    As Auckland and Canterbury Universities have said (four years ago), anybody claiming that, is completely misrepresenting what the Wolak Report actually said.

    Even Wolak himself said the figures did not apply to retail customers.

  107. photonz1

    Russel Norman won’t say where they’ll come from.
    David Shearer won’t say where they’ll come from.

    Actually photonz1, they’ve both said where the savings are to be made. But don’t let that fact get in the way of your ignorance.

  108. Jackal says “You’ve been very careful not to mention dividends in your defunct financial analysis there photonz1.”

    That’s because they have nothing to do with profit.

    Companies and (SOEs) pay out vastly different dividends – from 0% – 200% of profit and more

    Genesis has often paid zero dividend to the govt because it reinvests profits into new generation. Some companies on the NZX do this as well i.e. Oceana Gold traditionally pays zero dividend.

    Other companies pay out MORE in dividends than they earn. Dunedin City Council has been getting it’s holding companies to do this for several years as the council drowns in debt (meaning their holding companies have to borrow to pay dividends – all it really does is transfer the debt).

    Meridian Energy has often paid out 100% more in dividends to govt that it has earned in profit. Twice it has sold major assets for hundreds of millions and paid the govt a special dividend.

  109. solkta asks “Are you not going to comment on John Walley’s discussion photo?”

    If that’s your ringing endorsement, it’s little more than a damp squib – it’s barely even positive about the plan.

  110. Jackal says “If you think that the savings will come directly off net profits, you’re one of the biggest idiots around. Please grow a brain and try again photonz1.”:

    Russel Norman won’t say where they’ll come from.
    David Shearer won’t say where they’ll come from.
    All you do is repeat totally meaningless drivel that they’ll come off revenues.

    So where are the savings coming from?

  111. dbuckley says “Actual cost of production of 1KWh of electricity: 3.9c”

    Are you deliberately trying to be misleading?

    Saying power costs 3.9c kw to produce is a silly as saying it costs almost nothing for a landlord to rent out a house for a year – just a little bit in ongoing maintenance.

    Does your cost of production include actually building and paying for the dams, windfarms, debt servicing, call centres, billing, transmission, lines charges, maintenance, depreciation, staff, vehicle costs etc?

  112. Cost for domestic consumer to buy 1KHh of electricity: 20c

    Actual cost of production of 1KWh of electricity: 3.9c. (Hydro: 0.5c, geothermal 1c, gas much more expensive, 3.9c arrived at by using correct proportional figures for hydro and geothermal, and assuming the most expensive gas number for the rest. Numbers from MRP share prospectus and the New Zealand System Operator)

    Installed capacity: about 10GW. Peak load: 6.5GW.

    Miscellaneous Electrical fact: 10% of the installed capacity is required to service the peak 1% of the load.

    By applying the brains that New Zealand had in the first half of the last century with the financial tools and nous we have available today we could dramatically improve the cost effectiveness of the electric sector.

    The benefit of taking say 20% out of the cost of electricity to NZ business with no loss of capability (short of long term) could make a huge difference to our exporting capability.

  113. photonz1

    Jackal also fails to understand that companies are valued on how much profit they make.

    You’ve been very careful not to mention dividends in your defunct financial analysis there photonz1. Since you believe you know everything, can you tell me how much dividends were paid by the five main power companies last year? Hint: It’s lots lots more than the $400 to $700 million projected savings.

    If you think that the savings will come directly off net profits, you’re one of the biggest idiots around. Please grow a brain and try again photonz1.

  114. solkta says “just your straw man photo.”

    The Greens say they will cut $750m off power prices.

    The big five companies (95% of the market) only made $488 after tax profit last year, and have only more than $750m just once in the last decade.

    Hence the questions on where the $750m will come from, when teh companies don’t even amke that much in their total profit.

    No wonder Shearer and Norman failing to front up – they can’t answer where the money is coming from.

  115. Not if they are forced to sell it for less than it costs then to make.

    just your straw man photo.

  116. solkta says “No, photo, the rEal value of the power assets is their ability to produce power. ”

    Not if they are forced to sell it for less than it costs then to make.

    They’ll have to stop new investment, sack workers, and put off important maintenance just to stay afloat.

  117. No, photo, the rEal value of the power assets is their ability to produce power. This won’t go anywhere.

  118. Jackal says “Kerry is an EXTREMIST because he/she doesn’t want all those billions of dollars in profits made here in New Zealand going offshore? ”

    The Greens sabotage scared small NZ investors away, and therefore lowered the share price.

    That’s why there is increased interest from offshore.

    It’s laughable that greens THEN complain of
    – overseas ownership, and .
    – assets being sold cheaply.

    ..when they’ve made both things significantly worse.

    Even more laughable when the Greens plan will destroy the value AND the income – something they’ve been fighting for two years to save.

  119. Jackal continues to be confused about revenue and profit.

    Profit is what you get when you charge MORE than your costs. (last year it was $488m for the big five)

    Jackal thinks they can charge $750m less, which would mean they charge LESS than what it costs them to make the power.

    And he still thinks they’ll make a profit.

    In fact the big five companies have made more than $750m just once in the last nine years – and that was only because of the sale of a large overseas investment – not because of NZ electricity prices.

    Jackal also fails to understand that companies are valued on how much profit they make.

    If a generator makes $100m a year, and that drops to $30m, it’s value also drops by 70%.

    That’s why Telecom, who’s shares were around $10 a few years ago, is now valued at $2.60.

  120. photonz1

    Kerry – you’re sounding like an extremist.

    Kerry is an EXTREMIST because he/she doesn’t want all those billions of dollars in profits made here in New Zealand going offshore? Pull the other one photonz1.

  121. photonz1

    We already had that debate and you’ve shown you don’t even know the difference between revenue and profit.

    Is that the extent of your argument, that I don’t know the difference between revenue and profit? Surely you can do better than that photonz1?

    And your plan is to make them nearly worthless – yeah – that’s really intelligent.

    The revenue for the five main power companies was nearly $10 billion last year… How does a 4 to 7% cut in that revenue make these companies “nearly worthless” photonz1? Before accounting for any increases, their revenue will still be around $9.3 to $9.6 billion per year.

    If you think those billions and billions of dollars in revenue is “nearly worthless,” you’re certifiable! In many ways you’re the best argument to help make the right wing look stupid the left could ever hope for photonz1.

    You can continue to claim that these companies will be DESTROYED by NZ Power if you like, but without any evidence to back up your unsubstantiated claims, you’re really just confirming beyond all doubt that you’re a deluded RWNJ!

  122. Kerry says “It is still not investing in the new productive and sustainable industries we need for the future.”

    The fact that Contact Energy has invested $2.5 billion in new generation in the last five years would prove your wrong.

    Kerry says “Exposing NZ to even more offshore profit taking is ECONOMIC SABOTAGE.”

    Kerry – you’re sounding like an extremist…..

    Oh, that’s right – you are.

  123. Kerry says “And have a look at how much was genuine new investment and not normal maintenance. You do understand that maintenance is an expense, not investment.”

    – The Manapouri upgrade included building a whole new tailrace tunnel from Lake Manapouri to the sea, and new turbines for a large increase in output from 585mw to 850mw (45% increase)
    – The Huntly upgrade increased output by a massive 385kw (30% increase)
    – NZ’s 2nd biggest geothermal station – Nga Awa Purua – is NEW – it only opened in 2010
    – the windfarms all over the country didn’t exist previously – they are NEW.

    You try to pass all that off as “maintenance”

    Another example that you’ll make up any old nonsense – even when it’s so blatantly false.

  124. How is buying into already existing and built assets, like power, any better than investing in driving up land prices?
    Simply borrowing to change owners. more to drive up prices of things that have already been bought and paid for.
    It is still not investing in the new productive and sustainable industries we need for the future.

    Photo. They should not be sold.
    Exposing NZ to even more offshore profit taking is ECONOMIC SABOTAGE.
    We are only in deficit because of offshore profits and interest. This will increase it foir no good reason except that Key, yourself and the other nutters think it is “the right thing to do”.

    This policy is the next best thing because we know that National will have grabbed everything, and borrowed to give to their mates, by the end of their term and there will be no more money, or assets, in the till, to buy them back.

  125. Kerry says “Someone who claims to be a businessman, but reckons selling profit making essential assets, even if they sell for peanuts, is a good idea.”

    And your plan is to make them nearly worthless – yeah – that’s really intelligent.

  126. And have a look at how much was genuine new investment and not normal, or deferred until Labour forced them to do it, maintenance. You do understand that maintenance is an expense, not investment.

  127. Kerry says “Photo thinks that being an overpaid manager in a large corporate makes for knowledge of business.”

    Kerry thinks someone with zero business experience and zero investment experience knows more.

    Metiria is lecturing businesses that she knows what’s best for then and they’ve got it wrong, and she’s not even at novice stage in her business experience.

    Even the Greens have talked about the need to move investment away from housing into the productive sector, then the first thing they do is a hastily thought up sabotage plan that does the very opposite.

    It scares everyone away from investing in the NZ productive sector – in the hundreds of thousands.

  128. Bit, like Photo doesn’t know the difference between revaluation and capital investment.

    Someone who claims to be a businessman, but reckons selling profit making essential assets, even if they sell for peanuts, is a good idea.

  129. Kerry spouts makes up nonsense off the top of his head as usual …
    “9 billion in investment. It was only a quarter of that.”

    – “Over the past five years Contact alone has invested over $2.5 billion in building generation capacity to ensure the reliable, safe and secure supply of power to New Zealanders now and in the future.” From
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10878488

    – half a billion spent by Genesis in Huntly expansion
    – half a billion in just one geothermal station by Mighty River
    – huge Manapouri upgrade by Meridian
    – upgrade to stations and canals around the Tekapo, Ohau, Benmore systems
    – then there’s nearly all the windfarms all across NZ, the vast majority of which were built during the last decade.

    Do you think all the wind farms were built for free?

  130. I don’t think Shearer or Norman are in hiding. They don’t need to to promote the policy at the present time – that will come in the 2014 election campaign. They announced it when they did merely to enable would be purchasers of MRP to make a better informed decision. They only people making a lot of noise about the matter are the bullshitters, who, for purely venal reasons, are desparate to persuade the two politicians to back down.

    Anyway, electricity consumers already know that it is a good policy.

  131. Jackal says “However we’ve already had that debate and you’re deluded claim doesn’t appear to be based in reality.”

    We already had that debate and you’ve shown you don’t even know the difference between revenue and profit.

  132. Kerry Thomas

    The fact is they have been able to mask their incompetence, and lack of ability to make business work better, by being able to constantly screw workers, appropriate formerly State owned business and run down assets.

    Exactly! If private ownership was so great, why haven’t they started these businesses up from scratch themselves? Instead they have to come along and try to appropriate steal them from the people. The fact they can’t even start up a successful private business to compete with our state owned ones shows they won’t be able to run them anymore efficiently as well. In fact they’re likely to run them into the ground just to make a profit, just like they did with the rail network.

  133. The fact is they have been able to mask their incompetence, and lack of ability to make business work better, by being able to constantly screw workers, appropriate formerly State owned business and run down assets.

    Just like our Government, formed of the same type of people..

    Promoted way beyound their competence level, as figureheads, for their greedy backers who have no illusions about what they are doing.

  134. Photo thinks that being an overpaid manager in a large corporate makes for knowledge of business.

    The reason why they are bullshitting so much is because they see their big bonuses and share options, with privatisation, disappearing.

    My local plumber knows more about how to start and make a business grow than they do. He’s a fellow Green, by the way.

    Havn’t you read the “Peter principle”. I can assure you it is accurate, where large organizations are concerned.

    We have a whole generation of NZ “managers” who have no idea how to make a business. Whose only skills are cost cutting, especially workers wages, fiddling the books and asset stripping.

    This is, hopefully, the beginning of the end for the Neo-liberal religion. Which is why the RWNJ ery are so frantic.

  135. Photo and his mates are spinning so much that I have visions of them drilling down below the anticline and causing a gusher.

    Resorting to empty slogans and downright bullshit is what you do when you have no rational argument.

    9 billion in investment. It was only a quarter of that. And a large proportion because Labour regulated to make them invest, to ensure continuity of supply/ reserve generation, after the blackouts caused by power companies being “run like a business” a few years ago. Something the RWNJ ery have conveniently forgotten about.

    Note the right love emotive bullshit slogans like “communist (meaning Stalinist, though I do not think most RWNJ know the difference), economic sabotage, economic vandalism, and all the rest. Though much of what National does, IS!

    Who are legislating for unrestricted spying on their own citizens by secret police, again.
    Who lets the police assault legal protesters, again.
    Who are taking away workers rights, like those famous Germans in WW2, and the Soviets, again!
    Who are selling power companies against the expressed wishes, and best interests, of a majority.
    Privatisation, spying on their citizens, repression of protest, and destroying Unions, was the main achievements of the above mentioned German government also.

    Note it destroyed their economy also. To the extent they had to go to war to retrieve it!

    Wannabee Fascist is probably too mild a description.

  136. photonz1

    Which will more than totally wipe out the 4.8% after tax profit.

    If you believe that, then I suggest you don’t invest. However we’ve already had that debate and you’re deluded claim doesn’t appear to be based in reality. For instance you ignore the fact that NZ Power will increase efficiency, which is where most of the savings will come from.

    By income I presume you mean dividends for private shareholders? They will reduce by around 4%, before taking into account increases in revenue. Revenue for the five main power companies increased 18.6% last year photonz1. That means these companies will likely increase their profits under such policy.

    As the NBR pointed out, there’s little real world experience in the Greens – they’re “full of people who have done nothing in their lives apart from politics.

    You should feel embarrassed about writing such inanities photonz1… Russel Norman has a PHD for god’s sake! Other Green MP’s are also well educated and have lots of real world experience. Despite you obviously knowing nothing about their lives, you keep claiming the Greens aren’t qualified to provide policy like NZ Power.

    What kind of “real world experience” do you suggest is required for the Greens opinion to matter photonz1… A seat on the business roundtable?

  137. mikesh said:

    “It is National’s resposibility to decide whether to sell, whatever the price. If the assets are sold at too low a price the ‘sin’ is National’s, nobody else’s. Labour have a right, perhaps even a responsibility, to say what they will do when they come back into power 2014.”

    He’s correct. Photonz1 and his bitten-to-the-quick mates, are dead wrong.

  138. “If I am wrong like you say, you’ll be able to give some links for each of them to what they’ve said in the media about the energy policy in the last week.”

    You are wrong, as I say. You claim Dr Norman and Mr Shearer are in hiding (h i d i n g). That’s silly talk, the talk of a silly-billy.

    They’ve no need to respond to your nervous chatter, that of Phil O’Really? or any other “My investments! My investments!” self-interested neo-lib shill. Those jumpy wound-up-like-a-cheap-watch speculators can wait their patience. That said, the Green co-leader, you know, she represents the party, released a very strong and clear statement about the policy last week. Did you not see it, photonz1? If not, you are way out of touch with the issue. Your ‘hiding’ claims confirm that you are way out of touch with reality as well. Perhaps I could send you something to relax you? A slim volumne of the Calming Thoughts of the Dalai Lama, perhaps?

  139. For two years the Green Party has been campaigning to save the market value and income of power assets. Quack.

  140. Jackal says “I can’t believe you actually tried to make up some rubbish about “economic dyslexia”

    There’s no doubt the Greens are making financial fools of themselves.

    I felt embarrassed for Metiria when she tried to lecture the country’s business leaders on what’s best for their businesses.

    As the NBR pointed out, there’s little real world experience in the Greens – they’re “full of people who have done nothing in their lives apart from politics.

  141. jackal says ““Destroy” is certainly too strong a word to use, as the revenue stream will only be affected by 7% at most.”

    Which will more than totally wipe out the 4.8% after tax profit.

    No profit, means the companies have little value.

    The asset value and income will be destroyed.

  142. The policy announcement was a couple of weeks ago photonz1… It’s not normal for political parties to continue making press releases about a policy announcement just because those who oppose it are going a bit nuts. That makes your claims that Labour and the Greens are in hiding pure fantasy!

    I can’t believe you actually tried to make up some rubbish about “economic dyslexia” photonz1… Richard McGrath certainly isn’t a true libertarian if he thinks expensive power causing widespread energy poverty is a good thing. Besides, you’ve totally ignored the fact that selling the assets has no benefit unless you can invest, whereas there’s considerable social and economic benefits to making electricity more affordable.

    “Destroy” is certainly too strong a word to use, as the revenue stream will only be affected by 7% at most. You seem to be overreacting still photonz1… May I suggest some chamomile tea and a lie down? But in your case you might need something a bit stronger.

  143. Jackal asks “What on earth does “economic dyslexia” mean anyway photonz1″

    How about campaigning for two years to save asset values and income, then putting in place a policy to that will destroy asset values and income, while still campaigning for a referendum to save asset values and income.

  144. greenfly

    If I am wrong like you say, you’ll be able to give some links for each of them to what they’ve said in the media about the energy policy in the last week.

    Otherwise, your endless rantings………

    “- pure fantasy, nonsense yabber, silly chatter from a foolish wee chap who should stick to subjects he has at least passing knowledge of.
    – bogus, simple-minded, boorish, dull, feeble, wan, laughable, sad and reflects badly on you
    – Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
    – credibility just evaporated altogether
    – little man
    – pure fantasy
    – You’re so rattled
    – making you break out in hives. Most enjoyable to observe.
    – pure fantasy.
    – chicken-little naysayer, such as yourself,
    – it really rips your undies!”

    ………..will all be applicable to you.

    Although to me it just sounds like you’ve totally lost the plot and are off your head on drugs.

  145. Why woud they respond to such ludicrous claims as; “economic sabotage, a Polish shipyard approach, reminiscent of Soviet communism” and that it would “leave families huddling around candles” for warmth… What response do you suggest for claims that NZ Power is; “economic vandalism” and that the Greens are a “Mafia” for gods sake?

    What on earth does “economic dyslexia” mean anyway photonz1, and how is it a “return to Muldoonism, wanton vandalism” and “economic terrorism” of all things? But what I’d really like to know is how on earth will it lead to the government confiscating people’s houses?

    These are all actual arguments that the right wing has made against what’s in reality a very moderate policy to make people’s electricity bills a bit cheaper.

    Perhaps an appropriate response to such insane claims would be to get the people who’ve made them tested for psychiatric disorders… However I don’t think such a move, even though appropriate, would play out well politically.

  146. Occasionally, photonz1, your comments have some value as a springboard for discussion but this mad claim of yours that Russel and David are in hiding, is pure fantasy, nonsense yabber, silly chatter from a foolish wee chap who should stick to subjects he has at least passing knowledge of. I’m sorry, I’d like to indulge you (yes, they are both quivering timorously in a foreign motel, afraid to face the might of the National Party Machine) but no, your claim is bogus, simple-minded, boorish, dull, feeble, wan, laughable, sad and reflects badly on you, photonz1. Get a grip or at least get some advice. Your credibility just evaporated altogether – puff in a thin veil of pale blue smoke.

  147. greenfly says “Your claim that Russel Norman and David Shearer are in hiding is pure fantasy. Are you really expecting anyone to take your claim seriously?”

    It’s blatantly obvious to the world that Shearer and Norman have gone AWOL on this issue – not a word to the media since the backlash – disappeared without a trace.

    The National Business Review calls the policy nothing more than frivolous posturing – not a real policy – and no one even comes out to rebuke that.

    As they say, it underlines the fact that the Greens are “full of people who have done nothing in their lives apart from politics.

    This group has been involved in politics at university, moved from there to various political/union offices and then into parliament.

    There is little real world experience and everything is viewed through a very narrow prism of political advantage.”

  148. You are not <supposed to be rattled, photonz1, you are clearly rattled.
    Your claim that Russel Norman and David Shearer are in hiding is pure fantasy.
    Are you really expecting anyone to take your claim seriously?
    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
    Be still, my wildly swinging epiglottis!

  149. Armchair critic says “You’ve found yet another group who have a vested interest in the electricity market, so what?”

    It’s not rocket science.

    The Greens push solar. Solar companies think the Greens plan will cut solar.

  150. greenfly says “You’re so rattled by the leaders counsel-keeping, photonz1!”

    That’s hilarious – your leaders are in hiding, and I’M supposed to be rattled.

    Why on earth would that rattle me?

    What a bizarre claim.

  151. “…even the Solar Association…”
    Any port in a storm, eh photonz1? You’ve found yet another group who have a vested interest in the electricity market, so what? That’s kind of like finding a pot smoker who favours decriminalization.

  152. You’re so rattled by the leaders counsel-keeping, photonz1! It’s beautiful to watch. They’ve laid out the plan then refused to quibble with the likes of Joyce, Key or any other chicken-little naysayer, such as yourself, and it’s making you break out in hives. Most enjoyable to observe. Wait your patience, little man.

  153. Jackal says “There’s no basis for the claims that NZ Power won’t become a reality if the Greens and Labour win the next election.”

    Except David Shearer and Russel Norman have been in hiding about the policy ever since the initial backlash when they announced it.

    If it’s so fantastic, why aren’t they trumpeting about it?

    Perhaps when a policy is such a dog that even the Solar Association has come out against it, it’s best to hide until you can think of a way of dropping it.

  154. Arana

    That’s because everyone who matters has decided the announcement was ridiculous and won’t be implemented.

    Such grandiose statements there Arana… Are they perhaps basing their assumption that the policy won’t be implemented on the polling?

    Meanwhile Gary Morgan says:

    … A combined Labour/ Greens/ New Zealand First coalition remains a good chance of forming Government after the next New Zealand Election — due late next year.

    Or are they basing their claims on some other thing that we don’t know about?

    It appears that they’re in fact basing their beliefs on nothing more than wishful thinking. There’s no basis for the claims that NZ Power won’t become a reality if the Greens and Labour win the next election.

    Instead we have a bunch of RWNJ reciting bad song lyrics… Some argument.

  155. Arana says “That’s because everyone who matters has decided the announcement was ridiculous and won’t be implemented.”

    Woodward analysis listed the risks to investors in Mighty River, and put the Greens/Labour plan way down at 10th biggest risk because it was unlikely to happen.

    As many stockbrokers have reported, the Greens/Labour policy has scared away many Kiwi investors, but the lower share price has generated more interest from foreign institutions.

  156. “Some muttered darkly this week about foreign investor flight – capital starvation – higher interest rates – and power blackouts.Yet interest rates have fallen – the dollar has strengthened – and the stock market has surged back to record highs since the April 18 announcement..”

    That’s because everyone who matters has decided the announcement was ridiculous and won’t be implemented.

  157. I’m reminded of Slade’s “Run, Run Away”:

    “Run runaway.
    See chameleon lying there in the sun
    All things to everyone
    Runaway.
    If you’re in the swing
    Money ain’t ev’rything”

    No one is pushing this stupid “policy”. It’s the QE kite of 2013.

  158. do you think the drop in support shown in the Roy Morgan poll represents the over-all response from the New Zealand public to the power proposals?

    No, I dont.

    Subtly pointing out to DaddyO that the strength of the dollar, the dropping of interest rates and the growth in the stock market have as much to do with the Greens/Labour policy as the poll results.

    Not much at all in reality, to early to call.

    Listening to Bon Jovi singing “Livin.’ On A Prayer” whilst doing end of month accounts.

    Sums it up what the leaders should be doing

    “Whooah, we’re half way there
    Livin on a prayer
    Take my hand and we’ll make it – I swear
    Livin on a prayer”

    Problem I see is that the Green and Labour leaders have dropped silently into the abyss and leaving the people

    Livin’ On A Prayer.

    Interesting lyrics

    “Tommy used to work on the docks
    Unions been on strike
    He’s down on his luck… it’s tough, so tough”

    !

  159. Armchair says “No doubt internal polling will be providing the parties with a much better indication than the Roy Morgan poll.”

    You know it was a bad idea to hastily put together a sabotage plan late one night, and dress it up in drag as a policy, when the likes of the Solar Association comes out against it –

    “The Solar Association of New Zealand thinks proposals to centralise electricity sales could make it harder to cut greenhouse gas emissions.”

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/134335/solar-group-sceptical-of-centralised-electricity-sales

  160. Gerrit – do you think the drop in support shown in the Roy Morgan poll represents the over-all response from the New Zealand public to the power proposals?

  161. The next few polls will be interesting, Gerrit. It is possible that the Roy Morgan of a few weeks ago was one of theooften discussed and rarely seen rogue polls, and it overstated the support for the Greens and Labour. If that was the case then all the talk of a 6.5% drop would be rubbish, as would attributing the NZ Power policy as the cause of the drop.
    No doubt internal polling will be providing the parties with a much better indication than the Roy Morgan poll.

  162. daddyO

    And the Greens/Labour vote is down in the polls.

    Next few polls will be interesting!

  163. Tenants label MP a ‘tosser’ over his tactics to get them to shift out

    The Ovendens have lived in the Temple Lane home, in the small South Island ski town of Ohau, for about a year but are moving out. They’ve had enough of Gilmore, who is involved in the trust that owns it. They say he:

    • Threatened to tell other landlords they were poor tenants, despite saying in a letter they were good people.
    • Recorded their conversations without telling them.
    • Emailed their lawyer, telling him to “stop making a fool of himself”.

    [...]

    Yesterday, Gilmore’s tenants said that after sending them several “bullying” emails, he inspected their home on April 4. At the house, Gilmore quizzed them on his occupation.

    Ovenden said: “He came in, had a look around and said, ‘Do you guys know what I do for a living?

    Do you guys know what I do?’ He didn’t really give us the opportunity to say yes or no, he just said, ‘I’m an MP’.

    If Gilmore is the standard, then National is in a far worse state of affairs than I first thought.

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