The bill stopping foreigners from buying houses in NZ has emerged from select committee study with significant amendments. Associate Finance Minister David Parker says the new law will ensure the market for homes is a “NZ market not an international one”. He contends Kiwis should not be outbid by “wealthier foreign buyers”.
But the same bill now includes a move to encourage “foreign direct investment” in forestry. Forestry Minister Shane Jones says the legislation – by bringing forestry rights into the overseas investment regime – will help promote high-quality foreign investment which puts more emphasis on genuine benefits for New Zealanders.
The teaching of public service ethics is admirable. Accordingly we approve the expansion and changes to the Australia and New Zealand School of Government which include a newly created chair in public service ethics and integrity at Victoria University of Wellington.
It’s been a field day for political commentators, and cartoonists, as Winston Peters fulfils a lifetime dream and steps up to the role of Prime Minister (even if it is only for six weeks).
And the country awaits just which one of the many politicians who have inhabited the frame of Peters over the best part of 40 years will emerge into the spotlight.
Those who know him well — and there are not many in the media who do — reckon he’ll be playing the would-be statesman.
“Look New Zealand, see what you’ve been missing…” That’s the line he will want to propagate. Forget the political bruiser, blur the memory of the past: he craves more than just a footnote in political history.
Beneath the headline, John Braddock, from the Socialist Equality Group, complains that New Zealand’s Labour Party-led government has “defrauded” voters by preparing to further restrict the right to strike for broad sections of workers when it overhauls the country’s industrial laws.
Conservatives are among the many people in Britain whose reactions range from disappointment to outrage after one MP, a bloke called Sir Christopher Chope, objected to a private member’s bill that would have made “upskirting” a criminal offence in England and Wales.
Sir Christopher’s lone voice blocked the bill’s progress through Parliament.
The bill has cross-party support. If passed, anyone who secretly takes a photo under a victim’s skirt will be liable to up to two years in prison.
A disappointed PM Theresa May said she wanted to see it pass soon “with government support“. The Minister for Women, Victoria Atkins, said the government will allocate time for the bill in Parliament to ensure it does not get pushed down the list of private members’ bills, which would mean it could some time to return to the Commons.
Backbench colleagues have excoriated Sir Christopher. Tory MP Nick Boles tweeted he was a politician “whose knuckles dragged along the ground“. Outside of Parliament, there are demands for him to be stripped of his knighthood.
It has become hard to keep track of the corporate welfare troughs around the country into which companies dip their snouts. One challenge in some cases is to find out how much swill has been poured into them.
The Business Dictionary defines corporate welfare as government financial support for big business, usually in the form of bounties, subsidies, or tax breaks.
The Taxpayers Union, which monitors this form of wealth redistribution, a year ago released a report, ‘Socialism for the Rich’, by Jim Rose. This showed the annual cost of corporate welfare had become $1.6 billion – or $931 per New Zealand household.