Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: No end of mileage

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  • Russell Brown,

    Not that it matters I suppose, haven't looked it up, but isn't it baying for blood? (Or the full moon, whichever is more convenient at the time).

    Of course it is. But if the mayor says braying, then braying it is.

    I should note that Garry Moore is a longtime Hard News reader and may well see this ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22834 posts Report Reply

  • Jonty,

    Anyone got any comments on Matt McCarten's reaction to KiwiSaver? Something along the line of ".... KiwiSaver will destabilise Cullen's superannuation scheme ... working people now not only have to take a pay cut but still pay income tax ... the final act in the privatisation of the welfare state ... working people's savings being gambled by investment speculators, etc, etc"?

    Katikati • Since Mar 2007 • 102 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    the nationalisation o[f] any risk

    The Government isn't assuming the risk. If you choose the wrong Kiwisaver vehicle and it breaks, you lose.

    No Right Turn comes up with the graph that the government should have

    I'm not so sure the Government wants to be trumpetting the fact they're transferring wealth to the rich from the poor who may be unable to sign up.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3207 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Of course it is. But if the mayor says braying, then braying it is

    Of course, it's all in the context - mayors bray, ferocious predators bay.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2075 posts Report Reply

  • Marcus Neiman,

    Jonty: The less anyone listens to Matt McCarten the better - it would that he cannot but help but undermining the Left in NZ despite his intentions.

    Sydney • Since Feb 2007 • 107 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Marcus, that is true. Also there is a culture of buying cars on tick that does encourage people to own more than they can afford. But they value it all the more, since a wrecked or impounded car on tick is even worse than no car at all.

    I think your patriotism comment is so on the money. And the flipside of it here too, for some reason NZers also consider it patriotic to own a Holden, so having an actual fast car seems to offend the sensibilities of old farts. It's like dancing with the local hottie in a small town - asking for a beating. But everyone who's not a total bogan or past their use-by will never look back after their first taste of a decent turbo.

    There are definitely just as many kids that want a fast car, or think they do indeed have a fast car, in Ozzie, per capita, as here. But what they actually have is a Holden that they are driving too fast. But on the flipside, everyone else is also driving a tank, so crashes are less fatal, and the roads are better, so the chances are less.

    V8 "Supercars". Yeah right. Couldn't we have an actual fast car race like the Formula One? One that might actually attract tourism? One where they don't have to legislate Japanese cars out of the race to avoid the thrashing they got from Godzilla?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Jonty:

    I actually think McCarten has a point -- geez, I am going to get drummed out the VRWC for that! :) Whether you think that's necessarily a bad thing - or even if TINA (there is no alternative) comes into play here - is quite another. At the moment, I think Cullen has played the politics very well indeed (which nobody is arguing with, AFAIK); but I'm still to be convinced we're not being sold a pup.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    Anyone got any comments on Matt McCarten's reaction to KiwiSaver?

    I think what some people really object object to the use of private companies to essentially receive government funds.

    For myself, whilst I may invest in them, I regard most pension / retirement funds, whether state delivered or private, as glorified Ponzi schemes.

    They have their place but they are susceptible to collapse as many found out, especially in the 80s and 90s.

    Basically, everything is a risk, eggs in one basket - don't place.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Haydn Thomsen,

    Simple suggestion - Ask the kids what they think

    Everyone's going on and on (including alot of people in this blog - and now me...) about how to solve the boy racers problem, youth drinking culture, etc etc ad nauseum but from my memory as a troubled youth I didn't pay much attention to my parents, and least of all what the 'authorities' thought.

    And this was due, largely, because they didn't ask me what I thought.

    Just a suggestion.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 5 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    Can't find it on radionz audio but I swear I heard Harry Duynhoven on Morning Report calling young people stupid - in the most general way. Not boy racers, not drunk teens; young people.
    Way to go, Harry. Youth vote, anyone?

    Harry's desperate to make sure that the logical progression of "well, if 18 year olds don't need high-powered cars, what about 50-somethings? Do they need Porsches?" doesn't happen. Vested interest an' all.

    and there didn't seem to be such carnage back then.

    Nobody, if you'd even bothered to read Russell's article before hitting the discuss button you'd notice the 'carnage' was worse 'back then'. Or, like they mayors, do you have a point to make, and you'll be damned if you pay attention to the facts?

    The Government isn't assuming the risk. If you choose the wrong Kiwisaver vehicle and it breaks, you lose.

    I keep asking this and keep not getting an answer: how is this different from right now?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    Basically, everything is a risk, eggs in one basket - don't place.

    Well yes, but we have all our eggs in the property market at the moment.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Kirsten Brethouwer,

    Why do we put kids in cars at all?

    Here's what you do: You don't give kids drivers licences until they're at least 19. Their brains are not fully grown, cars are simply too dangerous for them. sorry this is the annoying euro perspective but WHERE I COME FROM (the netherlands) the drinking age is 16 but you don't get behind the wheel until your 19. (and then it's often too expensive to have a car anyway so most people don't get their licence until they're in their twenties).

    I agree with Russel that for boy racers the alcohol is maybe not the biggest factor, but i'd rather have them go on an alcohol binge and then having to walk or take a taxi home at the age of 18 then have street races at any time of day or night, sober or drunk.
    i really really mean it. All that crap about parents should be tough blahblah, there's enough evidence to support that it's simply not the right time in your life to be doing something so risky as driving a car, so the government should make it easy for parents and say, kids are not allowed to drive one. Society and infrastructure will adjust to that i'm sure. Aren't we trying to get people out of cars anyway? And to carpool and use public transport?

    In Holland the road toll is the same in absolute terms as New Zealand, but it's the size of Canterbury and we have 16 million people. The risks we take with cars in New Zealand are ridiculous and the cost to society too high for any demographic. Cars have no place in the life of a teenager, and we don't trust them to make rational decisions regarding alcohol so why do we trust them to make rational decisions regarding the deadly things that cars are. Cars are too cheap here and it's too easy to get them at a too young age.
    I'm sure legislation can bring about a cultural change. No faffing around with by laws and nonsense about the drinking age. It's the cars that kill.

    Waiheke Island • Since Nov 2006 • 35 posts Report Reply

  • Jonty,

    Marcus: The less anyone listens to Matt McCarten the better - it would that he cannot but help but undermining the Left in NZ despite his intentions.

    You don't recall when NY City went bankrupt and everyone's retirement funds evaporated?

    Katikati • Since Mar 2007 • 102 posts Report Reply

  • Marcus Neiman,

    Jonty: I was making a general comment on McCarten's general tendacy to fail in advancing the Left in NZ long term and that it might be time to find a new strategist/commentator/leader.

    On your second point, I find the argument that everyone's Kiwisaver savings will be at particular risk somewhat of a red herring.

    Sydney • Since Feb 2007 • 107 posts Report Reply

  • Felix Marwick,

    I should note that Garry Moore is a longtime Hard News reader and may well see this ...

    Oh good. Then he'd be able to explain some of the more interesting and ineffectual schemes trialled by his Council to deal with young drivers.

    My personal favourite was the 50 thousand dollars the Christchurch City Council spent on a burn-out pad at Ruapuna Raceway. It was never used.

    Turned out if there'd been an accident on it the Council/event organiser would have been liable for prosecution.

    The other one was the "Boyracer hangout" proposed by then Councillor Ingrid Stonhill. The idea was to open up a carparking building in the city centre on Friday and Saturday nights where car enthusiasts could get together.

    Again it died a slow and painful death. Surprisingly no-one was too taken with it.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    Turned out if there'd been an accident on it the Council/event organiser would have been liable for prosecution.

    Which is probably one reason Bob Clarkson doesn't throw open the gates to his speedway.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2075 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    Have we seen, in effect, the privatisation of superannuation - and the nationalisation od any risk, which should be a real concern given the rather *cough* uneven history of returns on such schemes - through massive transfers of public money to the affluent?

    Not yet - but it makes it easier for that to happen in the future, which is of some concern. OTOH, if the primary use of Kiwi Saver for most people is saving and paying for a house, then it becomes a lot less likely.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1716 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    You don't recall when NY City went bankrupt and everyone's retirement funds evaporated?

    Or thousands of former employees of Enron and Robert Maxwell who found out their pension funds had vanished before their jiobs?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    In Holland the road toll is the same in absolute terms as New Zealand, but it's the size of Canterbury and we have 16 million people.

    Which is kind of the important difference.

    So when you've banned everyone under 19 from owning a car, will you be transporting them to and from jobs everywhere in the country there isn't public transport? What's your message to kids in rural Taranaki who'd like to go to a movie or enjoy a social life? "Get fucked"?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Don Christie,

    Well yes, but we have all our eggs in the property market at the moment.

    My point was encourage diversification of investment and as I said in another thread, statistically it makes sense to make some provision for retirement in these or similar schemes. Just don't make it your only provision is you can.

    Given that the NZX has been flying rather high for some time, it would seem that investment is not confined to property, despite the hype.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1645 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    I have some sympathy for the idea that we focus a lot on rights and less on responsibilities. But I seriously doubt that Sawyer and his pack of donkeys actually understand responsibility in terms of societies. It's not trivial to learn or teach, personally I'd be happier with better science education than have a course in civics.

    As for fast cars and young drivers, the numbers are clear the fast cars aren't the problem. Mind you compulsory 3rd party insurance isn't a bad idea but it is a licence for insurance companies (foreign owned) to gouge more money out of us all. While boy racers cars would attract high 3rd party premiums, don't imagine for a second that premiums on your urban assualt vehicle would be that low.

    Now if you could figure out a way of getting them to pay carbon tax on the diesel spread over the road for burnouts....?

    For me a much better idea is making sure that if you must have children driving cars then perhaps we should invest in compulsory driver training of a high standard. It might just improve life on the roads for everyone if a new generation of drivers grew up knowing why it was dangerous to do a U-turn on Dominion road in peak hour traffic...

    One nice effect of raising the driving age might be to get young folks used to idea of using public transport. At the moment from the time kids are old enough to party they are old enough to drive to the parties. If those ages were separated (by raising the driving age) maybe kids would develop a culture of using public transport to get to and from clubs, pubs and parties? Just a thought.

    cheers
    Bart

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    Mind you compulsory 3rd party insurance isn't a bad idea but it is a licence for insurance companies (foreign owned) to gouge more money out of us all. While boy racers cars would attract high 3rd party premiums, don't imagine for a second that premiums on your urban assualt vehicle would be that low.

    Indeed. When I worked in the UK I paid ten times (yes, ten times) for third party cover what I paid in New Zealand for full cover, given a car of similar age and a perfect driving record. Compulsory insurance has its downside.

    One nice effect of raising the driving age might be to get young folks used to idea of using public transport. At the moment from the time kids are old enough to party they are old enough to drive to the parties

    Ahh yes, the excellent public transport of parts of Wellington, parts of Christchurch and... where else in the country, exactly?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    I'm not so sure the Government wants to be trumpetting the fact they're transferring wealth to the rich from the poor who may be unable to sign up.

    No; they're transferring wealth from employers to their workers. Most of the benefits remember come from employer contributions, not from the government.

    I agree though that participation is the big problem. My preferred solution would be to continue working to raise wage rates by hiking the minimum wage and supporting union bargaining.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1716 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    So when you've banned everyone under 19 from owning a car, will you be transporting them to and from jobs everywhere in the country there isn't public transport? What's your message to kids in rural Taranaki who'd like to go to a movie or enjoy a social life? "Get fucked"?

    Do what I did. Ride a bike all over Auckland and ride the buses.

    The solution isn't driving cars but improving public transport which can partly be achieved by getting more folks used to the idea that public transpot is viable.

    cheers
    Bart

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • amy mac,

    To reiterate other's arguments - alcohol bans will do zip - but compulsory third-party insurance (for all of us, not just the sub-20s) would go a fair way towards cleaning up nz's roads. And yep, it'll make car ownership even _more_ expensive... and public transport even more attractive! Souped-up BMXs anyone?

    Since May 2007 • 2 posts Report Reply

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