A Naughty Boy

We have been able to obtain a recording of a telephone call recently made by an early childhood educator (we’ll call her Miss X) to the parent of a newly enrolled small boy who was just completing his first day at his new pre-school.  The following is a transcript. Miss X:  Is that Mrs Trump? […]

Is There Any Limit to Australia’s Anti-Kiwi Hostility

My wife and I have often enjoyed holidays in Australia.  A year or two ago, we returned to Noosa, and visited a café where we remembered having had good coffee a year earlier. As he handed us our coffees, I asked the barista whether he was the Kiwi we recalled having met there briefly on […]

Will the Voters Think?

Winston Churchill is reputed to have once said that “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others”.  If he did indeed say that, he was presumably trying to capture a somewhat paradoxical truth – that democracy, at its best, has great underlying virtues that are unmatched by other forms of government, […]

A Trump Dictatorship

How do dictatorships come about?  That is a question easily answered in most cases.  The classic instances arise as the result of a military coup or at least with the support of the military or following a victory in a civil war.  There is almost always an element of force – but not always. Hitler, […]

What I would Have Said in the Herald

I have received in the last couple of days a number of inquiries as to whether, when and how I will respond to Don Brash’s latest exposition in the Herald of his understanding (or lack of it) of the banks’ role in money creation. The answer is that the Herald – perhaps understandably – do […]

Putting a Proper Value on Work

The success enjoyed by the trade unions recently in establishing that, across the economy as a whole, we can put a minimum value on particular categories of work has been of immediate benefit to thousands of low-paid workers, and particularly to carers, many of whose wages have been held down because of their gender. But […]

It’s Not Just the Rivers

When I was a child, we lived in Palmerston North.  Our favourite picnic spot was a few miles away, at Raumai, on the banks of the Manawatu river.  It was in the river there that I learnt to swim. Like many of my generation, and many others as well no doubt, I was shocked to […]

The Fallout from Brash’s Downfall

Don Brash’s attempt in the Herald a week or two ago to deny the accuracy of my account – also published in the Herald – of how the banks are not merely intermediaries but create out of nothing most of the money in circulation can be explained in two ways, but neither does much good […]

A Surprise from Jim Bolger

Jim Bolger will have surprised a few people this week.  In an interview with Guyon Espiner of National Radio, the former National Prime Minister expressed the view that “neo-liberal” economic policies have failed, and that an important aspect of that failure has been that most of such new wealth as has been created has gone […]

When the Chief Banker Gets it Wrong

It is no surprise that a former Governor of the Reserve Bank should seek to defend the banking system from its critics.  It is less expected, however, that Don Brash should do so while displaying an apparently complete – and certainly shocking – ignorance of the subject.   In attempting to deny the accuracy of […]