Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: What Now?

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  • Ross Mason,

    So would I in normal circumstances but something made me stop; door knobs when all that is going on around you? This morning we find out

    Memo: One must cease waving the wide broom of generalisation......

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1590 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Collegaue found this. I will plonk it in the other thread as well.

    Liquifaction. Nice home grown Christchurch demonstration of the real thing

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1590 posts Report Reply

  • recordari,

    Kiwibog and the Sub-Standard are now, and ever shall be, substantial net contributors to anthropogenic global stupidity.

    There's a couch in the corner with your name on it. The plush lounger of sanctimony.

    Anyhoo, I'm done. So long and thanks for all the fisks.

    PS. Apologies for the me meme. Just felt like the right time for reasons that are entirely my own.

    AUCKLAND • Since Dec 2009 • 2607 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    are so wedded to the voodoo economics of trickle down (and Victorian morality) that their administration is an economic one trick pony with no more ideas in it’s intellectual cupboard.

    And its inbred relative, John Frum economics.

    I heard on NatRad this morning that ChCh businesses previously based withn the Four Avenues are relocating to the suburbs, with the subsequent rental rises in those areas. An understandable reaction, but I can't help but think that this will reinforce the 'dead centre' syndrome that has beset ChCh for a while now.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5439 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Fran O'Sullivan provides a more in-depth list of options for government to fund Christchurch earthquake recovery. Pretty balanced list; includes bonds, a low-tax zone for businesses in the Chch cbd, and reinstating an Auckland regional fuel tax.

    Her colleagues Adam Bennett and Matthew Dearnaley focus on the government's infrastructure projects and in particular the Auckland region's transport ones.

    The Herald understands the quake will not affect the $1 billion electrification of Auckland's rail network or other passenger rail projects in Auckland or Wellington.

    Asked whether proceeds from partial asset sales could be earmarked for Christchurch repairs, Mr English said they "would certainly help" if the sales went ahead.

    ...

    "But in terms of the ability to fund infrastructure without going back to the financial markets, the mixed ownership model may turn out to be reasonably timely."

    (that's part-privatisation, for those playing from home)

    The suggested halt on Auckland's long-sought rail tunnel project predictably rang alarm bells last night with city councillors.

    Transport committee chairman Mike Lee said a recovering Canterbury and the country would not be served by having "a weak stagnating Auckland".

    ...

    Mr Lee said he was concerned that people might be using the Christchurch earthquake "to reinforce their own prejudices which we have seen on display for so many months" after the release of the business case and its compelling arguments for the rail link.

    He was referring to the Government's reaction to a report for for KiwiRail and the former Auckland Regional Transport Authority which predicted that the 3.5km underground link from the western end of Britomart to Mt Eden would pay for itself three and a half times over in benefits to Auckland.

    A team of consultants warned that without the link, a dead-end Britomart would be almost at capacity within three years, leaving virtually no room for extra rail services after the arrival of electric trains in 2013-14.

    Ultimately, Auckland would choke on its traffic congestion, and doubleor even triple bus lanes would have to be built on each side of main roads to have any hope of keeping people moving.

    ...

    Labour leader Phil Goff said Aucklanders had voted in a mayor who supported the rail loop.

    The Government now had to demonstrate in an open and transparent way that the project deserved a lesser priority than other infrastructure plans, such as the Puhoi to Wellsford "holiday highway", which were going ahead.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Brief Radio NZ text story - Labour, Greens and even Peter Dunne urge govt not to use quake as excuse, while Act party are fans of disaster capitalism - who knew?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to recordari,

    There’s a couch in the corner with your name on it. The plush lounger of sanctimony.

    No, it’s the bitter experience of being on the receiving end of racist and homophobic abuse from both those sewers. If David Farrar and Lynne Prentice want my respect, they can earn it like everyone else.

    Then again, I don’t delude myself either gentleman gives a figgy fart what I think of them.

    Fran O’Sullivan provides a more in-depth list of options for government to fund Christchurch earthquake recovery. Pretty balanced list; includes bonds, a low-tax zone for businesses in the Chch cbd, and reinstating an Auckland regional fuel tax.

    Her colleagues Adam Bennett and Matthew Dearnaley focus on the government’s infrastructure projects and in particular the Auckland region’s transport ones.

    Whatever they’re putting in the water at the Herald, I hope there’s a lot more of it in the basement. :) Though, I would cynically note the royal we in today’s editorial doesn’t seem to extend to calling on English to cancel the April 1 cuts in business tax, which I assume APN would benefit from.

    Still, credit where credit is due.

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

  • giovanni tiso,

    Meanwhile, Simon Power signs off. That's a big loss for National.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    And what does Power's resignation at the upcoming election tell us about the politics of the senior cabinet?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    Meanwhile, Simon Power signs off. That’s a big loss for National.

    Whatever disagreements I’ve had with the man here and elsewhere, he’s certainly more of an asset that one or two (dozen) seat-warming oxygen thieves I could – but won’t – name looking around the chamber.

    OTOH, as Michelle Shocked puts it: The secret to a long life is knowing when it’s time to go. An OK song, but great advice more people (not just politicians) should follow.

    And what does Power’s resignation at the upcoming election tell us about the politics of the senior cabinet?

    It may tell us to buy oven mitts when Simon’s tell-all memoir hits the shelves. OTOH, it may tell us as much as Winnie Laban’s equally sudden resignation did about the state of the Parliamentary Labour Party. Who needs tiresome facts when the speculation is infinitely more entertaining? :)

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

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Sacha,

    And what does Power's resignation at the upcoming election tell us about the politics of the senior cabinet?

    I have not a clue.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Greg Dawson, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Who needs tiresome facts when the speculation is infinitely more entertaining? :)

    I like to believe it's because he needs to spend more time as his superhero alter-ego given the circumstances. But that's just because I think a last name like Power comes with responsibilities.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 294 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Who needs tiresome facts when the speculation is infinitely more entertaining?

    It's a fair question given that Power has been mentioned as a potential future leader of his party. Unless you know something we don't.

    Oh, and the equivalent (knowing you love those) would be more Maharey than Laban.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Sacha,

    It’s a fair question. Unless you know something we don’t.

    Nope – Power’s just been on Nat Radio and I’ve got to say his reasons and his explanation of the timing (the Rangatiki electorate AGM is next week and he didn’t think it fair to “lead them up the garden path”) sounds perfectly reasonable to me. Won’t stop the usual suspect cooking up knife fights in the Cabinet Room and drunken porn-watching marathons in ministerial hotel rooms though.. :)

    Oh, and the equivalent (knowing you love those) would be more Maharey than Laban.

    That actually is a better analogy, up to a point. Maharey was obvious really hit hard by the death of his partner, and who’d blame him for thinking a great job and getting home for dinner every night was more attractive? (But just for the record, Simon Power and his family are all in perfect health AFAIK. If I knew otherwise, wouldn’t be gossiping about it.)

    I knew Simon casually back in my Young Nats days, and while he took his politics seriously he never struck me as the kind of person for whom a political career was the be all and end all of his life. See no reason to change my initial view of the man.

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

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    his reasons

    He wants to spend more time with the private sector.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    The audio of the Power interivew on Nine to Noon is now live.

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

  • Steve Barnes, in reply to Robyn Gallagher,

    I’ve been interested to discover that the cathedral spire has sustained previous earthquake damage and been rebuilt. Quakes in 1881, 1888 and 1901 damaged the spire, with the tip being rebuilt in timber and copper, lighter than the previous builds in brick and stone.

    And I'm thinking, sentiment aside, that a City that has suffered more than 5 major earthquakes in its 150 year history is in the wrong place.
    Perhaps if people really want to live there may I suggest inflatable buildings, I've seen some pretty neat Castles.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Just thinking,

    The incredible mean spirited comments of Rod Carr, that the heritage advocates are putting heritage before lives. Is pretty much the measure of the man.
    Along with the dumb comments of Gerry Brownlee, who is still advocating cutting red tape as we question the standards that have delivered such devestation.

    If I could draw your eye to the Catholic Basillica that was closed since 4 September and cordoned off. This worked in preserving life, while working on heritage.

    That is what we have been advocating for.

    Not Ring, but Quigley said there is likely to be a 6 coming after a 7. Our impatience at Geological time scales jumping into Business as Usual was where we acted rashley.

    Putaringamotu • Since Apr 2009 • 1158 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Perhaps if people really want to live there may I suggest inflatable buildings, I've seen some pretty neat Castles.

    Steve? Could I respectfully ask you to STFU?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    He wants to spend more time with the private sector

    Heh

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Peter Hyde (Vicki's partner) has written this pretty good summary of the situation right now, especially in the Eastern suburbs.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Steve Barnes,

    And I’m thinking, sentiment aside, that a City that has suffered more than 5 major earthquakes in its 150 year history is in the wrong place.

    If you really want to take that to the reductio ad absurdum, the billions of human beings living at the rim of the Pacific basin are “in the wrong place”. Problem is, darling, I don't have anywhere else to go, so I'm staying focused on having the very best civil defence network, building standards and all the other shit that actually saves lives.

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

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Christopher Dempsey,

    Thank you Christopher. That was exactly my view on the name and shame register. I tend to support the tenet innocent until proven guilty, but others feel differently of which.....;)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Tim Watkins discusses the politics of paying for reconstruction.

    When it comes to vast sums like this, political economics becomes very simple. You need more money and it has to come from somewhere - you either have to cut or borrow.

    Naturally, a right-wing government will favour the former, because it wants to do that anyway. And this will become one of the big questions in the next few months. What's going to have to be sacrificed to pay for Christchurch?

    It's the perfect cover for those who prefer small government anyway, except that sacking more public servants and cutting more night classes aren't going to come close to picking up the tab. So you look to the big ticket items? Will National choose to go farther than intended on welfare cuts? Will defence upgrades be postponed? Will some of the highways of national significance be seen as less significant? Maybe we could skip a prison or two?

    What about the budgets for the Rugby World Cup? Whanau Ora? Broadcasting? Youth Affairs? The Families Commission? And on and on...

    On the other side of the coin, he notes that ratings agencies seem relaxed about upping this country's public debt.

    Now, more borrowing is essential, and suddenly it's also no big deal. Moody's sees no reason to alter our credit rating, despite anticipating extra offshore borrowing as a result of this second quake. Our debt ratios would remain in line with our Aaa-rated peers, it says.

    The government, if not sanguine, now accepts that borrowing more is possible.

    Which prompts the question, how come borrowing that would have utterly buggered our economy a week ago, is now perfectly acceptable? How can both be true and responsible?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    And Danyl focuses briefly on the politics around the politics.

    DPF is wroth with the media for tastelessly pestering the Finance Minister about his plans to finance the re-building of Christchurch. Apparently when English publicly muses about financing the cost of the quake and then calls a press conference to discuss the issue it’s ‘ghastly opportunism’ on the part of the media to question him on it and report his answers, especially if they’re politically unpopular ideas like scaling back Working For Families.

    Most of the suggestions I’ve seen from various politicians and pundits on how to deal with the aftermath of the earthquake are things that those individuals desperately wanted to see happen before the quake.

    And in the comments, our friend Matthew Littlewood notes:

    I’m not sure if you’re aware of this, but three or four years ago, all of the surrounding territorial authorities (and ECan) put out the urban development strategy, which was a response to exactly this concern. It received more than 20,000 submissions and public consultation on it was huge, as were the necessary logistics to impliment its “findings” so I imagine something in that order wouldn’t go amiss again.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19735 posts Report Reply

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