Air New Zealand Shows the Way

In the ten years or so before my wife (English born and bred but now a proud Kiwi) and I returned to live in New Zealand, we flew back to New Zealand from Britain on many occasions. We always felt, as we boarded the Air New Zealand flight at Heathrow, that in doing so we […]

Tipping the Balance

In his first term as Prime Minister, John Key made a determined effort to be all things to all men – and women. In his second term, however, he hasn’t bothered; he has clearly calculated that he can still win an election while quite overtly tipping the balance of advantage further in favour of the […]

New Zealand’s Elective Dictatorship

It was the Tory MP and peer, Quintin Hogg, later Lord Hailsham, who coined the phrase “elective dictatorship” to describe a government that – once elected – proceeds to ignore the wishes of the voters who elected it and to do whatever it wishes. His point was that there is much more to democracy than […]

A Kiwi Haircut?

We have grown accustomed to treating crises in the euro zone as having little to do with us. So, there will have been a restrained response to the news of yet another crisis, even one that has provoked “outrage and panic” in Cyprus where it has arisen. But we should perhaps take a closer look, […]

The Government’s Economic Report Card

As we enter the fifth year of this government’s term, and the sixth year of bumping along on the recessionary bottom, we now know enough to make an informed judgment of the government’s stewardship of the economy. The usual economic indicators do not paint a pretty picture. Unemployment remains stubbornly high, manufacturing is weaker, the […]

Submission to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing

SUBMISSION FROM BRYAN GOULD TO THE PARLIAMENTARY INQUIRY INTO MANUFACTURING Introduction This inquiry is timely and important. I suggest that there are three main questions that should be addressed. They are: 1. Do the recent history and current state of New Zealand manufacturing give grounds for concern? 2. If so, do the difficulties experienced by […]

More Than “A Decade of Dominance”

When the All Blacks play Scotland at Murrayfield next Monday, it will be just over ten years since they last lost to one of the Six Nations countries on their own ground (the 2007 loss to France was at Cardiff). This “decade of dominance” – as it has been described by Northern hemisphere rugby writers […]

Standing Up for Ourselves

Charles de Gaulle was a pain in the neck. As the self-appointed leader of a defeated and occupied country, he had very few cards to play. But he nevertheless succeeded, through making a nuisance of himself, in making sure that the other Allied leaders – Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin – had to take France’s interests […]

Time for A Step Change

Europe’s leaders are being taught lessons that they refuse to learn. The Greek economy was always too weak to join the euro zone; now that it is – as a consequence – flat on its back and weighed down by debt, the “remedy” imposed on them by their European partners is an enforced dose of […]

The Maori Challenge

When I left New Zealand for the first time in 1962 to study at Oxford University, I took with me an LP (yes, real vinyl!) of the St Joseph’s Maori Girls Choir. I was amazed to discover over my years in Britain that the one thing guaranteed to make me homesick was playing that record. […]