The recent announcement from Labour and the Greens with regard to setting up a single national buyer for wholesale electricity to curb the excessive profits of the power generators, (who by the end of the current round of partial-privatisations will overwhelmingly be in the private sector), was certainly a shot across the bows of the National led government.
On April 17th, 2013, marriage between persons of the same gender became lawful in New Zealand after parliament voted 77 to 44 in favour of the passing of the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Act. This law passed with widespread support from the New Zealand public with most opinion polls showing up to 70% of those polled supporting same sex marriage.
This makes New Zealand the 13th country to legalise same sex marriage and the first country in the Asia-Pacific region to do so.
This perspectives document is a Marxist analysis of New Zealand. Such an analysis provides Marxists with a guide to the developing situation of the country. This perspective document is not intended to be a blueprint of future events which is beyond the scope of scientific socialism and nor is it our intention to present it as such.
The Westpac television advert showing the house-sharing pensioners arguing about their food and chores may not be so funny in a few years' time. The Government has concluded that it can no longer afford a decent standard of living for pensioners. The problem is that there will be too many of them – as people are living longer and into the bargain, there is the baby boom.
The Household Labour Force Survey, which is the official measurement of unemployment in New Zealand, reveals that the unemployment rate is 7.3% of the work force (or approximately 299,000 people). Yet, the numbers of people on the unemployment benefit are around the 50,000 mark according to the Ministry of Social Development.