The Nation 2,3 Nov: Quakes, Taxpayers, NZ Post, Labour
01 NOVEMBER 2013
Coming up on The Nation
Table of Contents
• Where does the Government go when a quake hits? A Torben Akel investigation
• GNS's Dr Ken Gledhill --- what does GNS know that we don't?
• NZ Taxpayers' Union, Jordan Williams --- who are they, what do they want and should ACT be worried?
• NZ Post's CEO Brian Roche --- why are the posities not coming?
• The Labour Party conference ---
Divided they stand! Political commentator Colin James is
What happens after the next Big One?
Following the Cook Strait quakes that rattled Wellington in July and August, The Nation started investigating the Government’s preparedness for a major earthquake.
What was released to us were contingency plans that have never been released before now, which include provisions to relocate Parliament to Auckland, and emails between top-level officials that show scientific predictions of a significant risk of an even bigger earthquake hitting the Cook Strait region were kept from the public.
Torben Akel’s exclusive report will be followed by an in-studio interview with GNS Science’s Head of GeoNet and Geohazards Monitoring, Dr Ken Gledhill.
New Zealand's newest union, or ACT 2.0?
The freshly-launched New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union has set high goals for itself – it wants to become the biggest union in New Zealand. Modeled on UK group, The Taxpayers' Alliance, the taxpayer's union will investigate and lobby against “wasteful government spending”.
The Taxpayer’s Alliance has claimed successes in forcing the UK government into greater spending transparency, but has also been criticised as a mouthpiece for the Conservative Party. The Alliance also has an association with right wing American lobby group, The Tea Party.
Kiwiblog’s David Farrar and Wellington lawyer Jordan Williams are co-founders. They say the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union is independently funded, is not affiliated with any political party and will never become a political party.
But this isn’t the first time New Zealand has had a taxpayer focused lobby group – former Labour Finance Minister Roger Douglas launched the Association for Consumers and Taxpayers 20 years ago. That association became the ACT Party a year and a half later.
So just where will the New Zealand's newest union go, and what does it intend to achieve? Jordan Williams is with Rachel.
Return to sender - is this the end of snail mail?
Some 2000 NZ Post workers look set to lose their jobs as letter volumes continue to drop.
Chairman Sir Michael Cullen announced the changes, which are set to occur over the next three years, on Friday, and insisted the company was committed to "maintaining a nationwide letters delivery service".
But the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are unimpressed, saying the loss of 14-19% of NZ Post's workforce came "out of the blue".
Postal service problems aren't exclusive to New Zealand - worldwide, similar systems are being forced to make changes as the internet makes letters increasingly redundant.
Brian Roche, the CEO NZ Post, joins us on the programme to explain why the cuts are necessary, and discuss whether snail mail is in its final throes.