The ‘property ladder’ is getting very unstable

Home values in Tauranga continue to soar, as QV release its latest report. ‘Values’ have increased 28.5 per cent year on year and 7 per cent in the city over the past three months. The average ‘value’  in the city is now $633,638. –  NZ Herald

A ‘value’ increase of close to thirty percent in one year without any positive change in underlying economic factors or intrinsic values equates to an unjustifiable and dangerous situation for our economy. This is economics 101. The inevitable crash is getting ever bigger. High time for Capital Gains Tax.

Global warming is making our oceans ‘sick’

Global warming is making the oceans sicker than ever before, spreading disease among animals and humans and threatening food security across the planet, a major scientific report said on Monday.

“We all know that the oceans sustain this planet. We all know that the oceans provide every second breath we take. And yet we are making the oceans sick.”

IUCN Director General Inger Andersen

What Americans Keep Ignoring About Finland’s School Success

Finland is an education superpower because it values equality more than excellence. Finnish students have been turning in some of the highest test scores in the world.

Finland’s success is especially intriguing because Finnish schools assign less homework and engage children in more creative play.

There are no private schools in Finland. This notion may seem difficult for an American to digest, but it’s true. Only a small number of independent schools exist in Finland, and even they are all publicly financed. None is allowed to charge tuition fees. There are no private universities, either. This means that practically every person in Finland attends public school.

The answers Finland provides seem to run counter to just about everything America’s school reformers are trying to do.

The Atlantic

Finnish Lessons by Pahi Sahlberg


Jupiter ‘Nothing we have seen or imagined before’ 

A NASA spacecraft has captured the best views of Jupiter yet, revealing turbulent storms in the north pole. Jupiter’s northern polar region is stormier than expected and appears bluer than the rest of the planet, said mission chief scientist Scott Bolton of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio. “This image is hardly recognisable as Jupiter. “

Political economy, social policy, the coming end of Neoliberalism . . . and other facts of our times.