Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Fine Line

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    jeez Craig you don’t half expect much do you.

    I expect the best because, I deserve it. We all do. So do the people in the city where I live for whom Dawn Raid isn’t a cool record label but a living memory, and who’ve been on the receiving end of ‘Yellow Peril’ racism (and racist public policy) for decades. So, yeah, it might help to be mindful that there are plenty of people for whom a “a one-line suggestion buried in the monetary policy announcement” sounds a note a lot of us hereabouts just don’t hear, and IMO it’s just a wee bit privileged to say “well, it’s not as bad as Brash at the nadir of his immigrant-baiting populism nearly ten years ago”. That’s a patronizingly low bar to set, however unintentionally.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11867 posts Report Reply

  • Tinakori, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    One of the major deterrents to people smuggling by boat to NZ is a purely commercial one. People smuggling is a business. The boat has to be good for only one journey because it is a one way trip. The trade off between a boat that can meet the nautical challenges and be written off after each trip - because it is confiscated or sinks - is a very tough threshold to meet. It would have to be large to carry a good payload but the larger the boat the more costly if it is also capable of getting here in one piece. But people are ingenious and I would not be surprised if there were attempts to get here. After all, the two major groups of immigrants to this country faced technological challenges far greater than the people smugglers and, in the case of the Europeans, over far greater distances. People also respond to incentives. If one gets here and is welcomed others will follow.

    Wellington • Since Jul 2013 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Russell Brown,

    For that reason, I actually don’t think it makes sense for Cunliffe to conjure up a magic number now, no matter how much Guyon Espiner screams at him.

    I've stopped actually listening to Moaning Report, now. I'm only keyed to the changing bulletins as a timekeeper. Both of them are crap interviewers.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 1881 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh, in reply to Steve Curtis,

    NZs number is around 750, which indicates they are taking 5 times the number NZ is , in proportion to population.

    Which I think is something we should be looking to fix. My point with boat people vs. plane arrivals is that the prospect of masses of boats loaded with "queue jumping" refugees is held up as a kind of bogie man. "Don't vote for that other party, they'll let our shores be swamped with masses of [dog whistle] refugees!"

    You are aware of course, that North Asian countries, like where you are resident have non existent refugee programs

    Yes. And? To steal a line from Mr Ranapia, that's a whole 'nother kete of kaimoana, and if you want to discuss all the historical, social, ethnic/racial, national, politcal, etc, issues tied up in that, we really will need another thread, and you might have to let me go anonymous (me still being in China for the time being... ).

    Beijing • Since Jan 2007 • 2011 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh,

    My apologies for jacking this thread so badly. Re: refugees, I think they should be kept separate from immigration policy and I think NZ should be doing much, much more to assist. And yes, openly not copying Australian policy.

    As for immigration policy generally, I find it hard to organise my thoughts. Partly, I guess, it's being a bit too involved in things. One more piece of paperwork before we can leave, and that's a PRC document so irrelevant to the discussion at hand.... But perhaps being in the migration process puts me in a position where it's difficult to assess these things rationally. I dunno.

    But I really struggle to see how capping migrant numbers would work, or adjusting the points system to maintain an effective cap. For starters, it could only apply to categories such as student, work, or business migrants. And even then, how could you reasonably tell applicants "sorry, you meet all the criteria, but we filled the quota"? To try and limit categories like refugee/asylum/protection or family reunion or spousal visas strikes me as being utterly inhumane.

    And yet, of course, simply throwing open the gates and accepting all comers is not going to be a smart idea.

    Still, I suspect that the real issues needing to be fixed are infrastructure, education and training, and management of the economy, and no amount of tinkering with immigration policy is going to fix those issues.

    Beijing • Since Jan 2007 • 2011 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to nzlemming,

    I’ve stopped actually listening to Moaning Report, now. I’m only keyed to the changing bulletins as a timekeeper. Both of them are crap interviewers.

    Espiner's a much better interviewer than he was this morning. He was howling at Cunliffe that he was a hypocrite for helping a friend living overseas with a house purchase. Cunliffe correctly observed that "Labour has never had a policy of preventing New Zealand citizens from buying property in New Zealand."

    I can only presume that they're under orders to show neither fear or favour, but there have been some frankly silly encounters.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18709 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Connelly,

    Immigration linked xenophobia is neither a right wing nor a left wing phenomena. In Europe at the moment, its coming from the right (as it has here in the past), while in NZ at the moment its coming from the left (and which ever part of the spectrum Winston currently occupies).

    And the line about immigrants making it difficult for Aucklanders is a joke. Auckland's own policies on new housing has made life difficult for Aucklanders, but as often in the past, its easier to blame immigrants.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2012 • 20 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    So, yeah, it might help to be mindful that there are plenty of people for whom a “a one-line suggestion buried in the monetary policy announcement” sounds a note a lot of us hereabouts just don’t hear, and IMO it’s just a wee bit privileged to say “well, it’s not as bad as Brash at the nadir of his immigrant-baiting populism nearly ten years ago”. That’s a patronizingly low bar to set, however unintentionally.

    I'm getting annoyed with all the innuendo now. Please tell me how “There may be a case for varying inward migration and/or work permits,” in a monetary policy document relates to the explicit racism of dawn raids (when any brown-skinned person could be stopped in the street and forced to show ID) or the "yellow peril" era.

    Then show me anything Cunliffe says about it that equates to those things. Be as specific as you like.

    Then I'd be interested in your thoughts on how to manage the emerging infrastructure issues I discussed in the post above.

    I think DPF is to some extent correct that net immigration targets might not offer enough leverage to be a really useful tool. That's a relevant criticism for sure, although you still have to find some way to address the capacity issues. But I don't thinking setting targets is racist. It's what immigration policy does.

    And, no, I'm not saying "hey, it's not as bad as the National Party policy of 2005". I'm saying, repeatedly, that it's very cynical for someone like DPF to be howling about racism and xenophobia now when he calmly waved through that horrible Brash speech then.

    I wrote at the end of the post:

    It should be possible to discuss migration trends without appealing to the worst nature of parts of the electorate and without reflexively being accused of xenophobia the moment the topic is aired.

    And I still hope that's true.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18709 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Martin Connelly,

    while in NZ at the moment its coming from the left (and which ever part of the spectrum Winston currently occupies).

    Peters is certainly pretty much on his usual track.

    And the line about immigrants making it difficult for Aucklanders is a joke. Auckland’s own policies on new housing has made life difficult for Aucklanders, but as often in the past, its easier to blame immigrants.

    Which policies? The Unitary Plan as originally presented would have helped a lot, but it was gutted because Len Brown wouldn't stand up to Quax, Brewer and the other rich nimbies. Allowing unlimited sprawl is not a solution.

    Various analysts are saying that we're entering a period of historically high, and possibly unprecedented, migration inflow that (bearing in mind internal migration) has significant implications for Auckland. We need to talk about how to address that.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18709 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    we're entering a period of historically high, and possibly unprecedented, migration inflow that (bearing in mind internal migration) has significant implications for Auckland.

    Important nonetheless to remind ourselves that about two thirds of the city's population growth over the next couple of decades comes from Aucklanders having babies and internal migration. Former head government statistician Len Cook made that point eloquently at an Auckland Council-hosted event last year.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I can only presume that they're under orders to show neither fear or favour

    Haven't heard him lose it like that with any government Ministers. Yet.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • william blake,

    http://www.dol.govt.nz/publication-view.asp?ID=252

    I would be interested if anyone took issue with these numbers, or conclusions.

    Since Mar 2010 • 78 posts Report Reply

  • william blake,

    Obviously the way to take pressure off Auckland while maintaining migration and taking in refugees is to create work in the rest of this big empty country. Unfortunately government make work schemes have all been sold and the market isn't interested in manufacturing in Balclutha...

    ...what about a few tariffs on imports?

    Since Mar 2010 • 78 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Chris Waugh,

    the real issues needing to be fixed are infrastructure, education and training, and management of the economy, and no amount of tinkering with immigration policy is going to fix those issues.

    Exactly. We're using migration as a convenient excuse to avoid addressing our ongoing national failure to make our economy sustainably better at earning more from the world through high-value, high-skilled work and smart, creative enterprises.

    We are choosing to invest in sprawling suburban McMansions and highly-leveraged dairy farms all ultimately owned by foreign banks, not in what genuinely counts for our children's futures. Tolerating political incompetence is part of that. Let's not encourage further stupidity.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to william blake,

    the way to take pressure off Auckland while maintaining migration and taking in refugees is to create work in the rest of this big empty country

    People all over the world are favouring larger cities. They offer advantages of scale and connectedness for the sort of work and workers we need more of, which seem to trump other motivations for some reason. Increasing internettedness may change that somewhat.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    I liked this bit...
    Ch(HP)LMA(t,t−5)=α+βCh(Pop)LMA(t,t−5)+δΔXLMA(t,t−5)+ΔeLMA,t
    (2)

    where Ch(z)LMA,t=zLMA,t−zLMA,t−5zLMA,t−5

    Sums it up nicely for me, especially the delta for the labour market area over time with regard to general population change over the same timeframe.
    I suppose that illustrates the lack of overall correlation between non Kiwi immigration and housing affordability due to the self creating nature of employment opportunities arising from immigration in general.
    I could be wrong.

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4671 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    Important nonetheless to remind ourselves that about two thirds of the city’s population growth over the next couple of decades comes from Aucklanders having babies and internal migration. Former head government statistician Len Cook made that point eloquently at an Auckland Council-hosted event last year.

    Quite, and as noted in earlier discussion here. But I don't think the current surge in net migration was was projected, and the difference with that is that it happens in the short term. The bigger, browner Auckland driven by natural increase is going to change society and politics in this town, but it will happen as people have their babies. But there's a housing crunch already and several years of high net migration would really put the squeeze on. If we go that way, we need to work out how to manage it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18709 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Sacha,

    Exactly. We’re using migration as a convenient excuse to avoid addressing our ongoing national failure to make our economy sustainably better at earning more from the world through high-value, high-skilled work and smart, creative enterprises.

    And let’s be honest: immigration buttressed Labour’s economic story in government quite nicely too. It created growth they wouldn’t otherwise have had.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18709 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to william blake,

    …what about a few tariffs on imports?

    Working out monetary policies that aren't entirely premised on hot-money-attracting high interest rates would do the same thing more productively.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18709 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    And we're already in deficit, thanks to those who profit from squeezes.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    immigration buttressed Labour’s economic story in government quite nicely too.

    shamefully lazy really, much like Blinglish aiming to cruise on zero real increases

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Russell Brown,

    And, no, I'm not saying "hey, it's not as bad as the National Party policy of 2005". I'm saying, repeatedly, that it's very cynical for someone like DPF to be howling about racism and xenophobia now when he calmly waved through that horrible Brash speech then.

    It only reinforces my point earlier that the usual suspects only seem to cry racism if big money happens to be at stake. So that probably makes it less the race card and more the model minority card.

    Which policies? The Unitary Plan as originally presented would have helped a lot, but it was gutted because Len Brown wouldn't stand up to Quax, Brewer and the other rich nimbies. Allowing unlimited sprawl is not a solution.

    Again, zoning restrictions are the real elephant in the room. But the Epsom set just happen to have deep enough pockets - and hence spin doctoring - to conspire to keep the status quo in place. They want to gut the RMA, but they'll invoke it when their own self-interests are at stake.

    Where the hell do these people get the idea that relaxing zoning restrictions is somehow Politburo central planning? They're not free-marketeers, they're rent seeking cartelists. Again, the hypocrisy pointed out by TransportBlog sheds some light.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4158 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I don't think the current surge in net migration was was projected

    See that earlier spike in the graph too. Averages out OK over longer periods like 10 or 20 years.

    in the short term

    And we keep electing politicians who see no further ahead than 3 years..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to DeepRed,

    the Epsom set

    more coastal - think Tamaki or East Coast Bays, in electorate terms.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16491 posts Report Reply

  • DeepRed, in reply to Sacha,

    We are choosing to invest in sprawling suburban McMansions and highly-leveraged dairy farms all ultimately owned by foreign banks, not in what genuinely counts for our children's futures. Tolerating political incompetence is part of that. Let's not encourage further stupidity.

    I suspect there won't be much traction until things get truly dire, like a housing market hard-crash. My inner Machiavellian tells me that the best way to trigger one is to actively encourage sub-prime lenders to set up shop in NZ.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 4158 posts Report Reply

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