web analytics

Arseneau: Election too close to call

Written By: - Date published: 1:26 pm, October 31st, 2008 - 64 comments
Categories: articles, election 2008, polls - Tags:

In her blog column Teresa Arseneau discusses the polls overall, and what happens if the largest party doesn’t form the government:

Several of these polls suggest that while National is likely to “win” the election – receive both the most votes and seats – it may not govern….But in an MMP election it is important to think in terms of party-blocs. And the source of a vote gain is as important as the gain itself. In the 2005 election, National grew its vote mainly at the expense of its potential partners – Act, UnitedFuture and New Zealand First – thus consolidating the centre-right vote. This partly explains why National’s support is now so large and why its potential coalition partners’ so small.

It is misleading then to simply compare the support of National and Labour. A more accurate picture is gained by looking at the relative support for potential governing blocs….The election is finely balanced between the two blocs.

The next week is crucial: one in four voters is still likely undecided. And support for the two blocs is so finely balanced that changes of less than 1% to each party’s vote, changes much smaller than the margin of error, could significantly alter the outcome of the election.

This time next week we’ll be into the final moments – and then it’s up to the voter. Centre right or Centre left?

64 comments on “Arseneau: Election too close to call”

  1. principessa 1

    DPF just posted footage of Helen tripping over yesterday. What an A##hole.

  2. Ianmac 2

    Nothing new actually. Nice middle ground rather than dispute her employers position re the infamous Espiner Poll.

  3. Ianmac 4

    Is there a name for people who like to see women fall over so that they can look up their dresses?

  4. randal 5

    yeah creeps

  5. r0b 6

    DPF just posted footage of Helen tripping over yesterday. What an A##hole.

    Farrarcical.

    On topic – it’s been clear for some time that the credible polls have been signaling this as a likely outcome. I hope that NZ can come to see that “time for a change” is an empty motto. If the focus goes on to policies and the credibility of the policies, then the left bloc will be forming the next government.

  6. randal 7

    epsinner poll read chris trotter in this mornings dompost
    comissioned by TV! so they can define for themselves and the natoinal party the nature of democracy
    if I mention the name of the originator of these tactics then this post will be moderated
    get the picture
    anyway with no challenge to their authority and their methods teevee1 is getting creepeier and creepier

  7. Quoth the Raven 8

    Here’s a link to what randal’s talking about: TVNZ’s attack on democracy

  8. higherstandard 9

    In my opinion the vast bulk of Nzers want a party of the centre in control of the next government.

    That is only likely to happen with a strong Labour or strong National government.

    Just my tuppence worth.

  9. Monty 10

    Of course she has probably changed her opinion given the desperation and gutter politics displayed by Labout this week. The general feeling is that Labour Neutron Bomb has completely backfired and blown up in your silly and desperate faces.

    Also the country will want good solid and strong leadership to guide us through the stormy policital waters ahead – and who better to do that than a man who has worked and understands international finance.

    I think you will be surprised at how hated Labour really is and next Sunday morniing you will be crying into your Hubbards at the strength of the defeat you are about to face.

  10. Lampie 11

    is colin and gayon related?

  11. Ianmac 12

    Randal: Consider this. If National gets the biggest single vote John Key can command Winston to join him and National, to get an absolute majority to rule. Wot fun!

  12. the sprout 13

    “Labour Neutron Bomb…” my arse.

    it’s pretty obvious the Herald was engaging in innoculation to defend National. nice to see they’re returning to a slightly higher level of sophistication in their propaganda at long last, since Ellis left they’ve been pretty meat-ball in their attempts to shape public opinion.

    and i expect the ‘tipster’ was engaging in a bit of this
    http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Jewish_lightning
    for National too, trying to make out Nasty Labour was being mean to the innocent. National are quite good at that, then labelling anyone who springs them as a “conspiracist”.

  13. Quoth the Raven 14

    Lampie – Yep they’re brothers. Just two little tory boys.

  14. Lampie 15

    What I want to know is why no one has asked Mr Key if he will confirm that if he becomes PM, will he still donate his salary to charity? And if so, why not now, if he hasn’t?

    Test of character? Says one thing

  15. Jared 16

    Strangely if it was the other way around the left would be swearing black and blue that National shouldn’t have the right to govern. The party that gains the most amount of party votes outside of a coalition should get the first right to form a coalition, any situation other than that would be morally wrong as Labour would not have the mandate to lead. It would have the power to form a cobbled coalition to control the house, but it would not have the mandate of the majority of the voters, not in my mind at least.

  16. Don 17

    “Gayon”? How mature. As for Chris Trotter’s claims that TVNZ is a tool of the National-led VRWC, does he not realise how intensely dumb he looks to anyone who is not a committted member of the left with those screeds of polemic he emits so regularly?

  17. Anita 18

    Jared,

    What do you mean “the first right to form a coalition”?

    If National gains more votes than Labour and they can form a majority coalition then they get to be the government, if they can’t they don’t.

    If National gains less votes than Labour and they can form a majority coalition then they get to be the government, if they can’t they don’t.

    There’s no “first” about it. There’s no race about it, you can either form a majority coalition or you can’t.

  18. Notice how a Greens Labour coalition is the end of the world over a kiwiblog with 5% holding the rest of parliament to ransom, yet and Act National coalition is just what the country needs.

  19. Jared 20

    Anita: I realise that, hence why I said “not in my mind at least”. But i still think the party that got the majority of votes should get the first right to form a coalition, rather than the party who came second.

  20. r0b 21

    But i still think the party that got the majority of votes should get the first right to form a coalition, rather than the party who came second.

    There is no such thing, constitutionally or in practice, as “first right” to form a coalition.

    Just look at the last election, where National (smaller than Labour) was actively trying to put together a government. It’s a bit rich for them to be going on about it now!

  21. Daveski 22

    sprout

    You overlook the fact that Batman was actively promoting the material to the Dom Post and prior to that the Standard. It’s rich to blame the Granny when the evidence suggests it’s a lot closer to home.

    I take LP’s word that the Batman is not linked to the Standard.

    Still, the indirect link coupled with the breathless ratcheting up of the neutron bomb here confirms that Labour did believe they were on to something.

    Given the broader issues at stake and the economic situation, I would have much preferred that the election focus on policies, not personalities.

  22. Jared 23

    r0b: obviously that was my own opinion, I cant speak for the National Party now can I.

  23. Ianmac 24

    Rob I Agree:
    The rules of engagement work thus:
    The voters cast their votes and these are counted and the lists produce the number of MP’s.
    The MP’s mill around, offer bribes and threats called consultation and negotiation, group themselves by any means, until one or other of the groupings have enough to form a majority.
    Clearly if one grouping have a majority, the other grouping must be a minority.
    Then the major grouping goes to the GGeneral and says “we are It!”
    He says “Good on yer mate! Have a go at governing.”
    Thus the size of each party is relevant only in forming a grouping.

  24. Anita 25

    Jared,

    What do you mean by “first right”?

    That’s the bit I don’t understand. Do you think the larger party should have a one week headstart?

  25. outofbed 26

    Nelson Mail poll
    West coast/tasman
    NAT 44.7 (39.59)
    LAB 33.91 (37.22)
    GR 9.03 (13.7)

    Which if a Nationwide result would be NATS 44ish Lab 37 ish Greens 9 ish

  26. Felix 27

    When Jared says “first” it seems to imply that the parties other than Nat and Lab have to stand in a line and wait to be picked. If the Nats get to pick “first” and pick, say, Greens and ACT then that’s their team and Greens and ACT have no say in the matter cos the Nats went first.

    It shows a complete ignorance of the most basic concepts of how our system works.

  27. Billy 28

    That’s brilliant, Felix. We could do away with the election and just have Helen Clark and John Key do that thing where you put your feet heel to toe and the person with the last whole foot gets first pick.

  28. Anita 29

    oob,

    I don’t understand your table. What are the numbers in parentheses? In fact, what are the numbers not in parentheses? Oh and what do the numbers at the bottom have to do with the numbers in the table? 🙂

  29. Anita 30

    Billy,

    I think that would worry Lockwood odds are Clark has smaller feet than Key.

  30. Felix 31

    How about paper scissors rock then? Always fair.

  31. Billy 32

    Anita,

    That’s the beauty of it. Foot size is no partcular advantage. It’s simply a function of the distance betweeen the participants and their foot size.

    The fat kid will get picked last anyway. Sorry Parakura.

  32. Lew 33

    Felix: Nice.

    Jared: We don’t use an arbitrary system of moral mandates to determine who gets to be in government – we use a codified system of law. It states that the first party leader who can assure the Governor-General that they have the confidence of the House (that is, 50% plus one of all votes in parliament) gets to be Prime Minister and form government. It’s that simple. No `first pick’ rights exist in law.

    L

  33. randal 34

    the point i s for all th edweebs who didnt get it the first time that goy epsinner commissioned colmar brunton to ask electors to vote on a poll that has no relevance ot constitutional democracy and is a figment o f natoinals imgaination
    Espiner and TV! have come to beleive that they can what ever they like and it is time they were takne to task for their immature and infantile understanding of the process of government.
    their schtick is the same sort of crass crap used by a lynch mob(excuse the pun) time for them to go after the election
    Kiwis demand standards and espinner and dallow are really letting the side down

  34. outofbed 35

    Poll results now followed by election result 2005
    Extrapolated Nationally on last national elections result
    by my maths anyway which was never that flash

  35. Lew 36

    Felix: Rock paper scissors isn’t fair – Asians always win.

    (I speak as someone who tried, mostly in vain, to consistently beat kids as young as three in Korea) 🙂

    L

  36. Billy 37

    Pansy Wong for PM then.

  37. Anita 38

    oob,

    I think you had the Greens numbers switched around, try

    National 44.7%
    Labour 33.9%
    Green 13.7%
    NZ First 4.3%
    Other 3.4%

    Making some assumptions about “Others” that would give

    Labour 42
    National 56
    Green 17
    NZ First 0
    Māori 6
    Prog 1
    UF 1
    Act 2

    LPGM and NActUFM are both possible, as is LPG with MP abstention. The Māori Party would decide.

    See, too close to call!! 🙂

    P.S. The Electoral Commission has a calculator for your geeky pleasure.

  38. randal 39

    anita..I dont mind the geeks its the tory dweebs with tight underpants that get me

  39. outofbed 40

    But Anita I have applied the increased or decrease vote for the parties in the West Coast/Tasman to the National election figures of 2005(Party Vote)
    and I get
    Labour 47
    National 55
    Green 11
    NZ First 0
    Māori 6
    Prog 1
    UF 1
    Act 3

    which strangely gives the same sort of options as you 🙂

  40. Anita 41

    oob,

    Everything gives those options 🙂 Too close to call 🙂

    How did you factor the swings? That’s a pretty cool trick!

  41. Felix 42

    Lew,

    Any idea why the Koreans are so good at P-S-R? Small hands? 😉

  42. outofbed 43

    NAT 44.7 %Current poll West coast
    (39.59%) 2005 west coast election result
    so Nats have increased by 13%
    So applying 13% to Nationals Nationwide vote of 39.1%(which incidentally about the same as National total %vote last election)
    we get 39.1% x 113% = 44.18%

    or something like that

  43. randal 44

    who is terese arsenau?

  44. Jared 45

    I never insinuated that electoral law dictated that the party with the majority has the first pick at forming a coalition, I said in my mind that should be the general rule (as codified by for instance, parties insisting that they will work with whichever party gets the majority of the votes). The beauty of MMP is that your party vote doesn’t have to be for FPP mandate, however I object to the notion that parties like NZ First will simply shop around to whoever will give them a ministerial portfolio regardless of the party who got the majority of the votes. How can you insist you have the mandate of the people when you don’t even have the largest proportion of votes to start with, even before you begin getting the progressives, greens, and Labour together. Or do you think that simply a vote for the “left” gives the “left” no matter how many parties comprise it, a mandate to govern.

  45. Pascal's bookie 46

    “Or do you think that simply a vote for the “left’ gives the “left’ no matter how many parties comprise it, a mandate to govern.”

    Yes, and same for the right.

    Say there only three parties, two libertarian parties and a communist party. The voters chose:

    Lib1 30

    Lib2 30

    Commies 40

    That’s a clear mandate for the libertarians. It would be silly to say that the commies deserved the mandate and that one of the lib parties should choose the commies over the better policy deal that they could get from their ideological bedmates.

    Obviously it’s a bit messier than that but the principle holds. Centre parties look like sluts but they have a duty to their voters to go with the block that offers them the best policy deal, all things considered (stabilty etc).

  46. Ianmac 47

    Having trouble changing back to Ianmac. Couldn’t post on other thread then posted twice??? Trying to find the right thread so:

    I can’t find who pointed to this from Anne Else on Scoop where she writes on all the many contradictions on What John Key has said to different audiences. No wonder his credibility is so shaky. Actually I feel a bit shaky when I consider the enormity of it!!!

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0810/S00433.htm

  47. Lew 48

    randal: http://justfuckinggoogleit.com/?q=therese+arseneau

    Felix: They can see into your soul with their beady black eyes.

    Jared: “How can you insist you have the mandate of the people when you don’t even have the largest proportion of votes to start with”

    Get this through your skull: how many votes a single party gets means absolutely fuck-all unless they get a majority of seats in the house. What matters is gaining the confidence of the house. That’s all. nothing else. It’s really fucking simple. It wouldn’t matter if it were 65 independent MPs or 65 individual parties each with one MP – the confidence of the house is a mandate to govern, no two ways about it.

    L

  48. Jared 49

    Or you could calm down. The mandate to govern is the will of the people, those that vote for the government, the same population that the government taxes. Gaining the confidence of the house is merely a formality in ensuring the ability to control the decisions as you wish, it does not indicate any mandate by the people that they want you to govern, the party that receives the largest proportion of votes is a far more indicative response to voter will than merely being able to cobble together a ramshackle coalition.

  49. Pascal's bookie 50

    Jared, I’ve got a longer comment that might be in moderation but ask yuorself this:

    If there were only three parties elected to parliament and two got 30 percent and one got 40 who has a mandate to govern?

    What if the 40 percent party is left wing and the two 30 percent parties are closely allied rightwingers?

    Do the people want a right wing govt in this case, as everyone here suggests, or should one of those rightwing parties have to support the plurality winning left wing party? That sounds pretty stupid and undemocratic to me

  50. Jared 51

    None have a clear mandate to govern, but the party that received 40% of the vote should be given the chance to form a coalition with another partner. As we have seen time and time again, apart from the Progressives and Act, almost every other party is willing to work with any other party on policy, rather than ideological reasoning. Political Parties should exist to promote policy rather than a particular “left” or “right” angle with voters voting for policy rather than colour. I don’t know about you, but I am voting for the party that best fits my needs and policy views than a specific “left” or “right” block.

  51. Quoth the Raven 52

    Jared – how do you think they come up with that policy – something to do with their idealogies, perhaps.

  52. The idea that Labour would not have a moral mandate to govern if they failed to win a plurality is bollocks. It misunderstands the point why we choose MMP. MMP forced the parties to negotiate with each other to form a government.

    If John Key is the leader of the party with the most votes post-election, I am sure that the Governor-General will ask him first to put together a government. But, if Labour and its support parties (whose voters whom would also prefer a Labour-led government over a National one, otherwise they’d simply vote National/Act/UF etc.) control a majority of seats, they would be able to thwart that attempt – and it would fail.

    Even the Maori seats are not unthwartable for National. It should get its Maori supporters, even National will have some – on the Maori role, and ask them to tactically vote Labour to keep the Maori Party from having an overhang. You sound like the crying Tory in the Australian system of preferencing, who got a pluraity in 1st preferences, but the other parties voters disliked the candidate, so they preferenced their votes to the Labor candidate, who thus won.

  53. Jared 54

    Absolutely, but by definition they are hardly identical. They may be closely aligned, but largely, every political party has a unique perspective.

  54. Trust me Jared, if the Labour, Progressive, Greens and Maori Parties can potentially cobble together a majority in the house on the night, there will be no concession. Just as I didn’t expect one from Brash in 2005, even though the same 4 parties in fact could have governed in concert with each other.

    The right will try and drag this out, next by including the 1 – 2% the Kiwi/Family/Pacific parties get, yet whose votes will be likely wasted. They will claim, that along with Nats/Act/UF since more than half people voted for them, they should lead. Yet here I would suggest Jared’s claim, that how do we know who the Kiwi/Family/Pacific party would have voted for, as they have no official representation and thus their votes don’t count.

    Just as much as Alliance voters votes didnt count in 2002, and Outdoor Recreation whose votes didnt count in 2005.

  55. Lew 56

    Jared: “The mandate to govern is the will of the people”

    No, this is where you are quite explicitly wrong. The Governor-General must allow the first person who can demonstrate he or she has the confidence of the house to govern. That confidence can only be gotten if electors vote in a certain number of people who are prepared to vote confidence in that person’s government. That’s the whole point. It’s not a formality – it’s the only way in which government can be formed. There is not `first dibs’ on government-formation – whoever CAN govern must be allowed to.

    I wrote a very long and detailed post on this very topic here, and I’m getting rather tired of explaining it to idiots who think a democracy operates on airy-fairy uncodified sets of ideas which seem nice from a certain angle, in a certain light, rather than the clear and simple rule of law. You’d do well to read the entire thread (On moral mandates), and the one where this debate was initially had, about the Roy Morgan poll which made this possibility obvious.

    Get back to us when you’ve read them – or done some research into how NZ’s system of government works. At that point you might not feel like you’ve showed up to a gunfight armed with a spoon.

    L

  56. Jared 57

    Hahahaha, you assume I know nothing about the Westminster System or MMP, far from it. I understand perfectly, the legal obligations present and the law surrounding the right to govern, whereas my comments were merely my opinion about how I view the election system than statements about legal liabilities about the mandate to govern. On the contrary you have highlighted your bigoted opinion compounded by your lack of comprehension skills (or did you miss my comment “I never insinuated that electoral law dictated that the party with the majority has the first pick at forming a coalition, I said in my mind that should be the general rule (as codified by for instance, parties insisting that they will work with whichever party gets the majority of the votes).” further up on purpose?).

  57. Lew 58

    Jared: If you do indeed know something, your failure to apply that knowledge gives a strong impression to the contrary. Statements like “those that vote for the government” – under MMP, nobody votes for government – electors vote in a parliament which then forms a government. This might seem a technicality, but it’s critically important because it increases uncertainty in voting, and therefore increases projected regret, changing elector behaviour dramatically.

    You disclaimed your whole misguided line of argument once as opinion, and then proceeded to talk about it as if it were fact, utterly failing to distinguish between responsibilities and behaviours codified in law and tendencies which have been elevated to the (temporary) status of convention (but only when it suits people to think of them that way). Your statement that “the largest proportion of votes is a far more indicative response to voter will than merely being able to cobble together a ramshackle coalition.” is just pure and simple bullshit. A plurality is no such `indicative response’ unless you presume all electors are as MMP-illiterate as you are. You do it again with fuzzy use of words here: “How can you insist you have the mandate of the people when you don’t even have the largest proportion of votes to start with” rests on the definition of `you’. Given that electors vote for a candidate or party in the context of who they are likely to coalesce with, the `you’ which includes those possible coalition partners can indeed be said to have the mandate of the people, and by virtue of having received enough votes to give them the confidence of the house, has the mandate, since that is the only way a mandate can be granted. It gets a little bit more tricky if parties do not declare their coalition intentions, but that hasn’t really happened in NZ, and in any case – the lack of declaration serves as fair warning to electors that the party or candidate in question might do something with which they disagree.

    If you want to talk about mandates in political-philosophic terms, or about electoral reform, that’s one thing – if (as you have been) you want to talk about it in the practical terms of elector behaviour, coalition, and and mandate for governance, then your opinions are worth less than your ability to understand and discuss what might actually happen, and why.

    L

  58. Pascal's bookie 59

    That about wraps that up I should think. Nicely put Lew.

  59. Anita 60

    Jared,

    Still “Huh? What do you mean by “first right”?”

    Let’s take either out my and outofbed’s outcomes about.

    National is the largest party, they give Act and UF come hither looks, both of whom leap at the chance… still not a majority. They say to the Māori Party “well then…?” the MP says “Will you vote to entrench the Māori seats?” National says “No”, the MP says “Then no”. National can’t form a majority coalition. Labour, the Progressives and the Greens say “yes” to each other, say they’ll vote to entrench and we have a LPGM majority coalition.

    How do you think that should occur? Do you think L, P and G shouldn’t talk to each other until National has failed to get a majority coalition? Do you think the Māori Party has an obligation to say “Yes” to National even tho they can’t get what they want? Does it bother you that NActUF is a smaller bloc than LPG? In which case which block do you think should get first shot at woo-ing the Māori Party? What do you mean by “first” anyhow?

  60. randal 61

    jared means his own personal desire formulated in a drinking school with his other rugged individualist mates half pissed in a country pub somewhere.

  61. Jared 62

    Not really. I think MMP is an excellent way of incorporating often extremist policy into manageable doses, although im not sure out of what I have posted so far has indicated some sort of “individualist” angle, if it has, I certainly didn’t intend it to. All I was trying to convey was my view that the party (whoever it may be, it doesn’t have to be left or right), if it doesn’t gain a majority of the vote, but it has the largest proportion of the vote (in electorate and party vote), that they should get the first option to try and solidify their lead. Essentially put, the party that comes second, shouldn’t have the first opportunity to form a coalition to defeat the party that came gained the largest proportion of votes.

  62. Anita 63

    Jared,

    But… what do you mean by first? In the scenario above (which I think is the most likely scenario we have), what would first mean?

    Each of the parties will decide where their best interests lie, I don’t think anyone will bother with who asked them first.

  63. Lew 64

    Jared: You’re saying that the Governor-General, when approached by parties #2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 with proof that they have the confidence of the house, should tell them `Sorry – I have to wait for parties #1, 7 and 8 – they might have the confidence of the house’ – in spite of the fact that each party can only give confidence to one leader, and therefore, if one bloc has the confidence, the other necessarily cannot?

    Nice thinking there.

    L

    Captcha: `elation margin’, n. Delta between the disppointment of narrow electoral failure and the thrill of success.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    13 hours ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    21 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    22 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    22 hours ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 day ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 day ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 day ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 day ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    1 day ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    2 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    2 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    2 days ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    2 days ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    2 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    2 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    3 days ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    3 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    3 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    3 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    4 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    4 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    4 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    5 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    5 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    5 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    5 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    6 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    6 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    7 days ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    7 days ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    1 week ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    1 week ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago

  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago