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Insights

‘Insights’ is the weekly newsletter of The New Zealand Initiative. Every Friday it provides comment pieces on domestic and global policy issues and the state of the world as such. It is a newsletter serious enough for a think tank – and lighthearted enough for an enjoyable Friday afternoon read. Please subscribe to ‘Insights’ by visiting the website of The New Zealand Initiative: www.nzinitiative.org.nz

Time to un-Grinch

From a policy perspective, New Zealand’s 2018 was not quite as eventful as most observers predicted. The (now no longer) new Government established so many inquiries and working groups that we saw less policymaking and more policy preparation. [...]

Centralism attacks Tomorrow’s Schools

In one area of public policy, New Zealand is much devolved: education. Since the rollout of Tomorrow’s Schools in 1989, our schools have enjoyed relative autonomy and self-governance. That may end if the Government implements recommendations from the Tomorrow's Schools Review taskforce. [...]

Having and eating your housing cake

If house prices go up, it is a scandal. If house prices go down, it is a disaster. That must be the logic by which the media reports on the ups and downs of the property market. [...]

Financial innovation beats Kiwibuild

Besides, the construction of 9,000 homes is more than 26 times the number of buyers who have qualified for Kiwibuild so far. It’s a pity that complex finance initiatives do not make for great photo opportunities with the Prime Minister. [...]

Towards Trump 2020

Few outcomes of the US midterm elections could have been predicted with certainty. Except that President Trump would call the result a “tremendous success” no matter what. And he did just that. [...]

Tricks and treats

Halloween is a strange feast in our calendar. Nobody knows what is celebrated and why. But that, I would argue, makes it the perfect candidate for New Zealand’s next public holiday. We need more nonsensical feasts to guide us through the year. [...]

No case for waka jumping

When the waka jumping bill went through Parliament last month, National had objected to it based on high principles. By not invoking this monstrosity of a law even as it would benefit them, National showed it believes in those principles. [...]

New Zealand First’s values

It does not happen too often that politicians do what I want them to do. It is even stranger when this almost makes me change my mind. New Zealand First’s Respecting New Zealand Values Bill has achieved this remarkable feat. [...]