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Back to basics

Written By: - Date published: 5:07 pm, June 11th, 2009 - 50 comments
Categories: john key, national, richard worth - Tags:

Radio NZ is playing John Key saying that, following the letter from the woman in the sexual harassment saga, he has “washed his hands” of Richard Worth. It seems likely he will move to have Worth expelled from caucus.

Good to see he chose a sensible path rather than the ‘attack the woman’ strategy the Nats’ misogynist foot soldiers (including John Armstrong, watch out for his next column) have run.

So, that’s done and dusted. Key accepts that Worth was sexually harassing this woman. It would be good if he calls off the dogs too.

Now Key just needs to tell us what stories about Worth led Key not to appoint him Speaker and answer the final question, which was the first question:

Why did he fire Richard Worth?

Update: Listening to the full piece on Checkpoint, sounds like Key won’t be moving to expel Worth from caucus at this stage but is clearly putting the pressure on Worth to resign from Parliament off his own bat.

50 comments on “Back to basics”

  1. tsmithfield 1

    I don’t know if I would go quite that far.

    I understand that Worth had told key and sent several texts to the woman. Clearly 30-odd texts makes that statement a lie. Lying to the PM wouldn’t win him any favours. Also, the texts that were published in the Media, while not being particularly lewd in themselves, do show Worth to be a stupid plonka for even thinking he could form a romantic relationship with someone so far out of his league.

    I think both these reasons would be enough for Key to wash his hands of Worth regardless of what he thinks of the remaining allegations.

    I guess only Key could tell us. However, apparently he has been sworn to secrecy.

    Anyway, I have had enough of this whole thing. I think it is time to draw a discrete veil over what has been quite a sordid little tale.

    • Merlin 1.1

      Give it up loser.

    • gobsmacked 1.2

      I think it is time to draw a discrete veil over what has been quite a sordid little tale.

      But here’s your problem. Key wants Worth out of caucus, and out of Parliament.

      Why?

      And why should Worth go? After all, you’ve worked so very hard to “prove” his innocence. If he’s done nothing wrong, why should he be forced out?

  2. Wendy 2

    Will all you who have attacked this woman relentlessly with no evidence, just fantasies in your head and deeply ingrained misogyny, now have the decency and honour to apologise?

    • r0b 2.1

      Don’t hold your breath Wendy. I have been sickened at what some right wing nutjob commenters have stooped to. Decency and Honour are not in their vocabularies.

      Key, to his credit, has enough of these qualities, or at least enough basic common sense, not to go down that path, and has thus cut the ground out from under these creeps.

      Maybe we can get back to arguing politics now…

      • Daveski 2.1.1

        r0b will realise it pains me to say this but well said. Couldn’t agree more and refreshing to have more than a cartoonish view of Key represented.

        Worth is a leper who deserves to be and should be shunned. It will also cast a shadow over MMP (list MP’s) if he stays but he seems completely self centred.

        There’s more important issues at stake.

        And seeing I’m being so damn nice, there isn’t a place to say this but I think LP was right to persist with the in comment threads rather than the traditional linear comments. It’s much better once you get used to it.

        • r0b 2.1.1.1

          r0b will realise it pains me to say this

          Indeed, so all the more bravo for saying it.

          There’s more important issues at stake.

          Ain’t that the truth. (Which is not to say that I think those that slugged it out with the few individuals who made a huge issue of the woman in the Worth business were wrong to do so, it’s just that I sure didn’t have the patience to do it!).

          LP was right to persist with the in comment threads

          Hmmm, maybe I even agree with you there too. If the “Recent Comments” list on the right listed only comments on this post, so there was still a chronological list as well as the thread structure, that would be perfect…

  3. the sprout 3

    and why did he hire Richard Worth if he knew a lot of this in the first place?

  4. logie97 4

    Now that John has all but dismissed Harry Worth
    the interesting question must already be what sort
    of fight National will make in the future for the Blue Ribbon
    seat of Remuera. Were they always happy to see him
    beaten by Wodney, allow him to fail as a list MP and then
    put up someone credible in the seat again? Watch out
    Wodney…

  5. Merlin 5

    I think we might find that tsmithfield and Tim Ellis are awfully silent for a few days.

    They won’t apologise for their unfounded attacks on this woman. In their world, women are always to blame.

  6. Tom Semmens 6

    New Zealand is rated the least corrupt country in the world, and the immediate sacking of Richard Worth at the merest whiff of corruptly attempting to use his office to offer jobs to procure sexual favours shows why.

    John Key is guilty of appalling political management over this, which calls into judgement his ability to keep a firm hand on his government. He is not guilty of anything else.

    Phil Goff has acted with total honesty and revealed he doesn’t watch trash T.V. like “Girls of the Playboy Mansion”.

    The media has generally shown restraint in the whole naming thing.

    All in all, the only thing that gave this legs were several needless own goals from John Key.

    The people who came out of this looking really, really, really bad are the right wing online commentariat and their handlers like David Farrar and Cameron Slater, who have been revealed as members of a women hating patriarchy and social dinosaurs.

    The whole issue has starkly exposed the sneering misogyny of these people and most dispassionate observers have drawn their own conclusions from this.

  7. Rex Widerstrom 7

    Is it too much to hope for that the rest of us will now follow suit and stop obsessing over this grubby little man and his ridiculous sleaze?

    FGS if I want to read about a sorry middle-aged mans pathetic, failed attempts at sexual conquest I’ll open my diary…

  8. Cactus Kate 8

    “Why did he fire Richard Worth?”

    For the millionth time – Worth was on his last chance with Key over the private nature of his India trip early in the year when that blew up and related shrinkage from discovery he was a Director of all sorts of private companies with conflicts of interests. The Labour Honey Trap wasn’t the consideration for his removal.

    News that the NZ Police would be investigating him for allegedly even being in the same hotel as the Korean lady would have been the straw that broke the camels back. He got sacked.

    Again – name one National Party aligned blogger who has suggested that Worth shouldn’t have been sacked? None. Very few even think he should stay on as an MP. I can’t think of any who have supported even that.

    I thought that Labour’s hierarchy ordered The Standard to shut this issue down?

    • lprent 8.1

      I thought that Labour’s hierarchy ordered The Standard to shut this issue down?

      Please don’t masturbate in public. You should confine your fantasies to the bedroom.

      • burt 8.1.1

        lprent

        I don’t think Cactus has kids and she possibly lives alone, I’m not picking she will take much notice of the suggestion that she should only use bedrooms.

    • andy 8.2

      With the concerted “The Stranded” effort this weekend to heap blame on John Key and rabidly defend Phil Goff over his handling of Witness A where in the intervening period before 6th May, Witness B claims she was sexually assaulted, don’t Labour just look even more politically motivated.

      Your quote from your blog…

      Seems the letter was enough for the PM, and was happy with the contents. Key is also happy to keep the contents of said letter quiet. Seems like Goff was in the clear and Key has backed down.

      Impertinent question:

      1. Will Cactus admit that John Key has handled this like an amateur?

      2. Why does key “need’ to keep the contents of the letter private.?

      3. When will the professional victims of the right admit that Witness A has nothing to do with Worths sacking/washing of the hands, and all to do with John Keys poor handling?

      4. Will Armstrong work in the Nats press office before the end of the year?

      …..

    • Hi Cactus

      I agree with the first part of your post.

      Worth was history no matter what Goff and Choudrey said.

      I am really disturbed at the treatment she has received. It is one thing for politicians to be smeared and checked into, they are on the payroll, it is no more than what they can expect. But party activists should not be subject to this. Does everyone have to be put through the siev?

      Is politics to become an incessant battle of which member of which party can be slimed by the appropriate google search?

      If Worth was toast why not acknowledge this and move onto the next issue rather than try and slime Choudrey. Instead of that there has been this full on assault on her without an eventual goal? All sorts of suggestions have been cast about the accuracy of what she has said but there has been no proof whatsoever that what she said was not truthful. And you seem to acknowledge that what she has said was accurate, that is that Worth is a womanising piece of *&^%.

      • mike 8.3.1

        “If Worth was toast why not acknowledge this and move onto the next issue rather than try and slime Choudrey”

        This would have been the case had Goff not tried to milk it for political gain.
        He took the attack to Key – Choudrey would still be anon but for his grandstanding

    • burt 8.4

      Cactus

      If lprents eluding to your fantasies has offended you then I suggest you report it to your favourite political party leader.

      Oh, also tell lprent it’s left you feeling uncomfortable and lprent might give himself the bash.

  9. VT aka daVince 9

    Left wondering about the straitness of TS and his tribe per above, and what specifically, might have brought this about from the ‘top’.. after such diatribes, conjectures and whatevers of feign support.

    well, I’ll admit to what very likely moved cessation and withdrawal from those who really should have known better.. NRT is onto it.. I reckon.

    ps: no harm in Wendy asking for one. nor others suggesting (from experience) that she wouldn’t have gotten one, but I also reckon the informative link does the work on her behalf..

  10. tsmithfield 10

    And why should Worth go? After all, you’ve worked so very hard to “prove’ his innocence. If he’s done nothing wrong, why should he be forced out?

    I have said a number of times that Worth is an idiot and needs to go. Heck, on one of my posts the other day, I even said I hoped the woman came up with something so lewd it would force Worth out.

    So, do you agree that the reasons I cited above would be enough in themselves to motivate Key to wash his hands of Worth? Yes or No.

    • gobsmacked 10.1

      But Smithy, you fudge the issue (whether deliberately or not, I don’t know. I’ll assume you simply misunderstand).

      Key can “wash his hands” of Worth as a Minister for any old reason. No problem there.

      What he wants to do is get rid of an MP. From the caucus, and from Parliament. That is very different. He needs grounds to do the former, and can’t do the latter at all. (unless convicted etc, but that’s months or years away).

      So Key has to have good grounds for expelling Worth from caucus. The reasons have to be made public (they will be leaked anyway, and of course Worth can say what he likes to the media). And – crucially – they have to be grounds that don’t set a preceedent. Being an ex-Minister who screwed up is not a good precedent. He’ll be emptying his caucus before long.

      Sexual harrassment might be a good reason. Offering appointments in exchange for sexual favours might be a good reason. Being a plonka, as you put it, would not.

      D’ye see?

      • tsmithfield 10.1.1

        And, telling lies to the PM in a written statement?

        The other point is, that even the texts that were released showed that Worth was prepared to compromise himself in a way that could be dangerous for the party. For instance, telling secrets on bed pillows to someone who National would regard as the enemy.

        I honestly don’t think he is fit to be an MP on the basis of this stuff alone. How about you?

        • gobsmacked 10.1.1.1

          “telling lies to the PM in a written statement”

          Thereby admitting that Ms Choudhary should have been believed, and that Key’s investigation failed?

          Phil Goff will be beaming.

          • tsmithfield 10.1.1.1.1

            The PM had two statements in front of him.

            One from Worth
            One from the complainant.

            The one from Worth said there were only several texts. The one from the complainant said there were lots of texts, and came with the supporting evidence of lots of actual texts. Therefore, the complainants statement was more consistent, so I think Key preferred the complainants statement over Worths because the complainants was the most credible of the two.

          • gobsmacked 10.1.1.1.2

            (sorry, this should be lower down)

            But he sacked him last week, when he didn’t have the woman’s account, let alone the texts.

            This raises an interesting point, PB.

            Most people don’t follow politics that closely, and the Worth story has moved fast and it’s a bit of a blur. Following public opinion (blogs, talkback, conversations, etc), it’s struck me how many people simply don’t distinguish between the two separate women, and two separate situations.

            Here’s one example (there are plenty more):

            http://writingtotheright.blogspot.com/2009/06/richard-worth.html

            That person has got it plain wrong. So have many others.

            Worth resigned. Key was unclear (still is) about the reason. Then a completely different story took over. And that story has become the “Worth saga”.

            Key thought he could opt for silence, on day one. Big mistake.

            Myth has filled the vacuum.

        • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1.2

          I’m not sure what lie you suggest he told to the PM. (30 vs several?) And why wouldn’t Key tell us this.

          I wonder if Key asked Worth for the affidavit when this blew up last week and Worth wouldn’t sign it?

          Getting the affidavit would cover Key about his ‘investigation’ of the claims. If a request for the affidavit was refused, the investigation amounted to key being suckered by Worth.

          Refusing to give a promised affidavit denying the allegations would most definitely be a sacking offense, and would explain both the lack of any public denials from Worth, and Key’s reticence about the proximate reason for Worth’s sacking.

          Just a theory, but it’s only got the one bit of conjecture in it, and it accounts for everyone’s behaviour.

          But I doubt we’ll ever know. That’s up to Worth.

          • tsmithfield 10.1.1.2.1

            There has been so much on all this. However, I remember Key saying something at the start when he got the statement from Worth that it admitted to several texts. Don’t ask me to reference it now.

            The point I was trying to make is I don’t think Key had to address his mind to the claims that were unsupported by the texts. All he had to do was consider the two accounts and which were most consistent with the evidence. Once he decided that, it would have been a simple decision as to which one he would accept.

            The fact that the complainants account claimed lots of texts and lots of texts were produced from Worth would have been enough.

          • Pascal's bookie 10.1.1.2.2

            But he sacked him last week, when he didn’t have the woman’s account, let alone the texts.

  11. mike 11

    More Goff lies exposed on 3 News tonight

    * When pressed by Garner about the “see through garment” Goofy admitted that one was not actually mentioned instead an Indian garment called a Zardosi was (which is actually an embroidery technique you muppet)

    * Again when questioned by Garner Phil comes clean and admits Ms Choudary did not actually write the tabled document herself it was a labour staffer – good grief

    I actually do feel a bit sorry for this poor lady as I’m sure she didn’t imagine the hapless Goff would let her down so badly and I hope it does end here – only as I think any more damage to labour would see Phil on his bike and thats the last thing we want…

    • gobsmacked 11.1

      “Again when questioned by Garner Phil comes clean and admits Ms Choudary did not actually write the tabled document herself it was a labour staffer – good grief”

      Which was publicly stated by Goff days ago, when the document was tabled. All on the record.

      Bad luck.

    • andy 11.2

      Why is key washing his hands of Worth after the letter? Why are you always a victim of the left?

    • GFraser 11.3

      Mike, It was Key who bolloxed this whole thing up not Goff.
      Goff does not need to “lie”.
      Right through this affair Key has been hopelessly out of his depth, I guess it’s the price the nats have to pay for electing a novice m.p. to leader.
      TV3’s coverage was nothing short of disgraceful this evening, by making a big deal of the bloke who had dealt with Ms Choudary seven years ago, Garner is certainly toeing the government line.
      Duncan if you were a true political journo, would you not be persuing Worth? After all how many appointments did Worth make as a minister? How many were female? etc. etc.
      Finally Mike, Goff stated that the letter was written down by a Labour staffer during a phone call with Ms Choudary, the letter was then passed onto Ms. Choudary for her to ok. This she did. Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story eh?

  12. Ianmac 12

    It is very interesting as a spectator here. The function that TSmithfield and others play is very useful, because they put another slant on things that make you think. I don’t very often agree with their slant but would welcome them in a brainstorming session should there ever be a need. Imagine them with the best brains from the bloggers on this site hammering out on a bipatisan issue like Super, or Supercity, or indeed on a murder trial. Powerful.

  13. tsmithfield 13

    Pascals Bookie: But he sacked him last week, when he didn’t have the woman’s account, let alone the texts.

    Obviously Key is aware of something re the Korean woman that might not be criminal but never-the-less is unbecoming a minister. For instance, if he orchestrated details surrounding a government function in order to get into the womans pants, it may well be sackable even if the woman willingly consented at the time. Perhaps Worth used government money for this purpose. I think Key has already said some time ago he doesn’t want to go into the reasons right at the moment, so we should respect that.

    I don’t think Key can afford to have someone in his government who’s judgement is swayed by every second bit of skirt that crosses his path. So, I am glad to see Worth go.

    I guess you would prefer him to stay in the government to be an ongoing source of mirth, entertainment, and distraction for the government?

  14. mike 14

    moved

  15. Pascal's bookie 15

    “I guess you would prefer him to stay in the government to be an ongoing source of mirth, entertainment, and distraction for the government?”

    Err, no. I wanted him sacked about the India trip.

    And I don’t know why the other is obvious. It’s unknown, is what it is. Which is weird. Usually we get to know why Ministers get sacked.

  16. tsmithfield 16

    Pascals Bookie “And I don’t know why the other is obvious. It’s unknown, is what it is. Which is weird. Usually we get to know why Ministers get sacked.”

    A tautology. But it obviously was something serious enough to get him sacked because he was sacked.

    I think Key did say all would be made known in time, so we will just need to be patient. Perhaps what he knows could be prejudicial to any future legal proceedings against Worth, so he is keeping it quiet for now.

    • mike 16.1

      and you can be sure he won’t resurface after the dust settles re helen c

    • Pascal's bookie 16.2

      But it’s not ‘obviously’ anything to do with the Korean woman case. I thought Key actually denied that at some point.

    • felix 16.3

      Sacked? Well first he resigned and then he was sacked. I’m sure you remember the resignation, don’t you?

      Also as I’m a bit thick, could you point out the tautology? I don’t see one.

    • TS

      “I think Key did say all would be made known in time, so we will just need to be patient”

      So how about instead of smearing Neelam’s name you hold off until we know why Worth was sacked and then we can determine if Neelam’s concerns and Phil’s objections were appropriate or not.

      • felix 16.4.1

        No I think he means for everyone else to be patient so he has time to peddle his smears without the constant interruption.

  17. dave 17

    when questioned by Garner Phil comes clean and admits Ms Choudary did not actually write the tabled document herself it was a labour staffer – good grief’

    Which was publicly stated by Goff days ago, when the document was tabled. All on the record.

    Except “all” was not on the record. What was not on the record was that the statement was not taken word for word, and that no mention of a transparent garment was mentioned in the correspondence between Choudary and Worth, but Choudary saw fit to mention it in the statement. Nor did she say that she filled Goff in before the initial meeting with Worth at the cafe. She wanted people to think she was naive, not a wannabe MP who is vurrently involved in a by-electin campaign.

  18. Pat 18

    Tom S wrote “Phil Goff has acted with total honesty…”

    From The Press 5 June:

    “These texts were several invitations to go swimming, late-night texts to go out to dinner, an invitation to go on holiday in India with Dr Worth, and to wear see-through clothing,’ Goff said.

    Goff is no saint. The see-through clothing comment was pure spin designed for shock value.

  19. tsmithfield 19

    Felix “Sacked? Well first he resigned and then he was sacked. I’m sure you remember the resignation, don’t you?”

    Call it what you like. So far as I am concerned, if he was told, “resign or be sacked” it is pretty much the same thing.

    Mickey Savage “So how about instead of smearing Neelam’s name you hold off until we know why Worth was sacked and then we can determine if Neelam’s concerns and Phil’s objections were appropriate or not.”

    So is it never OK to examine the victim, Mickey? There have been documented cases of women who falsely accuse rape. Should we wait until the accused has been put through an unnecessary trial before examining whether the accuser has told the truth or not, especially when there are glaring areas of concern?

    In the case at hand there were a number of very concerning issues:

    1. Possible political motivations given that Worth has been the target of the opposition for months.
    2. Glaring inconsistencies in both the woman’s and Goff’s stories. Some more of these are pointed out above. However, I have said I am finished with this now, so I won’t comment further.

  20. Outofbed 20

    I am finished with this now, so I won’t comment further

    .THANK FUCK FOR THAT

    • tsmithfield 20.1

      There’s a lot more I could be talking about if I had a mind to. Would you like me to give some examples?

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    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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 ...
    4 days 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 ...
    4 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 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
    5 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 ...
    5 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
    5 days ago
  • Outsiders.
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    5 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
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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 ...
    6 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
    6 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 ...
    6 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 ...
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    7 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
    7 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
    7 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
    7 days ago
  • Saving lives
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week ago
  • Letter to a friend
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week 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
    1 week 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, ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week ago

  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    7 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
    7 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
    7 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
    7 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
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  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
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