Home > Dollars & Sense, The Body Politic > A job! A job! My kingdom for a job!

A job! A job! My kingdom for a job!


“We will be unrelenting in our quest to lift our economic growth rate and raise wage rates.” – John Key, 29 January 2008


Despite John Key’s election-pledges in 2008 to see wages rise in New Zealand, the opposite seems to be happening; wages have either mostly stagnated, or, in some very public instances, are being actively driven down.

The maritime workers in Auckland and meat workers for meat-processing company, AFFCO, are facing an unprecendented attack on workers’ right and conditions which would see many (if not all) of them casualised and suffer a cut in wages.

This is hardly an “unrelenting… quest to lift… economic growth rate and raise wage rates“. It is, in fact, more akin to Bill English’s remarkable admission on TVNZ’s Q+A, on 10 April last year that having wages 30% lower than our Australian cuzzies was a “a good thing if we can attract the capital, and the fact is Australians- Australian companies should be looking at bringing activities to New Zealand because we are so much more competitive than most of the Australian economy.

Unions representing various  groups of workers have had a gutsful, and are asserting their right to strike,


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The casualisation and reduction of real wages is not just a threat to the families of working men and women – but a threat to our economy as well.

National and ACT voters might care to reflect that just recently, BERL released a report outlining the value of blue-collar workers to the economy,


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We simply cannot afford to lose  skilled blue-collar workers heading of to Australia, or elsewhere in the world. Australia already has plenty of our doctors, nurses, engineers, scientists, etc.

As Berl chief economist Ganesh Nana said,

If you reduce the amount of trained and skilled labour out there, not only are you reducing the quantity available to businesses, you are also increasing the cost of the labour … because it’s in short supply.”

Global finance and accounting firm Robert Half director, Andrew Brushfield, said recently,

 “Where there is currently a need for skilled people in Australia, that need is just as prolific in New Zealand.” – Source

So let’s be clear about this;

Instead of short-sighted, selfish,  employer-driven vendettas against their workers – which achieves nothing except a form of reckless  economic self-sabotage – this country should be looking at ways to increase wages, which then leads to increased business turn-over; generating greater economic growth;  and ultimately, a more prosperous society.

I do not believe – not for one micro-second – Employers and Manufacturers Association chief executive Kim Campbell, when he said,

Frankly, I think most employers would like to pay more if they can, I don’t know any employer who genuinely wants to pay less.” – Source

That is 100%, unadulterated crap.

It is crap because many employers can pay more,


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They just choose not to.

Once again, from Mr Key,


"The driving goal of my Government is to build a more competitive and internationally-focused economy with less debt, more jobs and higher incomes." - John Key, 21 December 2011


And as we all know, John Key is a Man of His Word. Right?



  1. John
    28 February 2012 at 12:54 am

    the mass action is over due.

  2. ALH84001
    29 February 2012 at 1:19 pm

    John :

    the mass action is over due.

    Getting out to vote next time will be the best mass action John. Last time I voted Labour. Next time it’s the Mana Party. Anything to stick it to those theiving Tories.

    And all you New Zealanders who voted for Key last year, are you all proud of yourselves?

  3. Deborah Kean
    29 February 2012 at 2:08 pm

    I believe that a factor here, is the Blue/Greens – the people who candidate voted National and party voted Green. I knew people like that last year, and have since heard of many others. The Greens could hold the Nats to account – but they won’t. 😦

  4. 29 February 2012 at 2:16 pm

    Unless the National candidate had some exemplary quality about him/her (which is not impossible), Debbie, I couldn’t even begin to work out how a voter could split their vote in such a Left/Right manner?!

  1. 10 March 2012 at 11:47 am

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