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What If Boris Is Right?

Written By: - Date published: 11:51 am, July 24th, 2021 - 73 comments

Now that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has “opened up” the United Kingdom from many of the Covid19 strictures that it had undergone, there is a lot at stake to his reputation and indeed to the lives and livelihoods of its citizens.

Freedom day

Written By: - Date published: 7:55 am, July 19th, 2021 - 58 comments

As infection rates of Covid in the United Kingdom surge Boris Johnson has announced that today will be the UK’s Freedom day and will be removing pretty well all mandatory Covid restrictions, even the wearing of masks and social distancing.

The problem with English Soccer

Written By: - Date published: 7:38 am, July 16th, 2021 - 13 comments

Last week’s final between England and Italy showed that there is still an ugly racist underside to what should be a beautiful game.

The Covid Crisis – the perils of half hearted responses

Written By: - Date published: 4:59 pm, July 11th, 2021 - 40 comments

The New South Wales’ half hearted response to community outbreak has seen infected numbers increase while in the UK Boris Johnson is planning to remove all restrictions something top scientists describe as “dangerous and premature”.

NZ Nuclear-Free Day

Written By: - Date published: 9:32 pm, June 8th, 2021 - 3 comments

June 8 is the anniversary of Aotearoa’s 1987 nuclear-free legislation. NZOnScreen is running a retrospective of our proud history, the Nuclear-free Collection. It is well worth a watch. I particularly liked the movie “Nuclear Reaction,” with Big Norm seeing off the French, Big Dave seeing off the Americans, and Kiwi Keith also clear about where we stood. The nuclear risk is worse now than it has ever been.

 

Cummings: Boris is unfit for the job

Written By: - Date published: 8:37 am, May 27th, 2021 - 20 comments

Former top aide Dominic Cummings has accused UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson of being unfit for the job, and of making constant U-turns, “like a shopping trolley smashing from one side of the aisle to the other”.

The end of Ruthenasia

Written By: - Date published: 8:03 am, May 21st, 2021 - 61 comments

National presented a particularly glum picture in Parliament yesterday.  And it was not only the realisation that Judith Collins is out of her depth. It was because this budget spells the end of Ruthenasia.

What the recent elections tell us about British society

Written By: - Date published: 11:31 pm, May 17th, 2021 - 35 comments

Originally posted on Nick Kelly’s Blog In a nation that has suffered over 100,000 COVID-19 deaths, one may be somewhat taken aback to see the latest YouGov Poll where The Conservative Party enjoy a 15% lead over the Labour Opposition. 17 months after the Conservatives won the 2019 General Election, it would be easy to […]

How Covid may work out from here

Written By: - Date published: 9:50 am, May 15th, 2021 - 68 comments

The world may never get back to a pre covid state.  Until herd immunity is achieved throughout large swathes of the world as well as in Aotearoa New Zealand our borders need to continue to be closely monitored.  The anti vaccination movement and the failure to ensure equitable vaccine distribution may mean that our current messy dread filled reality will continue.

Boris Johnson’s and Dominic Cummings’ very public fallout

Written By: - Date published: 10:54 am, April 27th, 2021 - 17 comments

Over in the UK Boris Johnson and his former chief advisor Dominic Cummings have had a very public fallout.  And ever since it happened there have been very public leaks of damaging information which incredibly have not as yet damaged the Conservative Party’s standing.

The five eyes beat up

Written By: - Date published: 1:50 pm, April 24th, 2021 - 33 comments

There has been a conservative sourced beat up of Aotearoa New Zealand for not using an intelligence gathering treaty grouping to publicly attack China.

Putting Five Eyes in its place

Written By: - Date published: 10:25 pm, April 20th, 2021 - 19 comments

Following her speech to the NZ China Council, Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta wanted to be very clear that in speaking out about issues with other countries, New Zealand would not be doing it in concert with Five Eyes partners. She expressed a view that New Zealand did not agree with Five Eyes remit encroaching beyond intelligence, and that this had been communicated to Five Eyes partners. Good.

The European Super League – a proposal that has united Britain

Written By: - Date published: 9:13 am, April 20th, 2021 - 28 comments

There are few issues where UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and former Labour Opposition Leader Jeremy Corbyn see eye to eye, yet this proposal has achieved just that. Rarer still to have the Second Heir to the Throne comment on such matters saying it would be “damaging.”

Boris wants more bombs

Written By: - Date published: 8:05 am, March 19th, 2021 - 50 comments

Boris Johnson has announced that the United Kingdom will increase its stockpile of nuclear weapons and open up the possibility of using weapons against non nuclear nations, despite being a signatory to various treaties that prohibit both actions being taken.

Britain’s tin-ear ’tilt’ to the Indo-Pacific

Written By: - Date published: 5:39 pm, March 18th, 2021 - 14 comments

In its new integrated defence and foreign policy strategy, Britain intends  to raise its nuclear warheads on Trident from 180 to 240. What a waste. It also intends to “tilt” to the Indo-Pacific, sending the New HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier here later in the year to give a message to China. It should read its history.

How to Put A Stake Through Our Monarchy’s Heart

Written By: - Date published: 2:13 pm, March 8th, 2021 - 31 comments

The Monarchy’s attacks on Meaghan Markle may backfire spectacularly.

V for vaccine

Written By: - Date published: 9:18 am, February 22nd, 2021 - 30 comments

The Covid pandemic is entering into an interesting stage with vaccinations being administered at an increasing rate and infection rates declining.  The opportunities for politicising the issue continue however.

We must resist US pressure on China that could lead to war

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 pm, February 20th, 2021 - 41 comments

In February 2002 I was at a union-NDP conference in Ottawa watching US television in my hotel room. Back home I reported on the conference to the Labour Party caucus and stated as an aside that the US was going to war with Iraq. Helen Clark stood up straightaway and said “we won’t be going with them.” Jacinda Ardern needs to do the same now.

Uyghur allegation escalation?

Written By: - Date published: 6:25 pm, February 6th, 2021 - 67 comments

Radio New Zealand carried a long story this week from the BBC of rape allegations in Xinjiang based on accounts from two Uyghur women Tursunay Ziawudun and Gulzira Auelkhan. Independent analyst Bernhard at Moonofalabama asks the question “Why do these Uyghur witnesses stories constantly change?

Reasons to abandon NZ’s Five-Eyed Folly

Written By: - Date published: 2:35 pm, February 4th, 2021 - 29 comments


Wayne Brown’s recent suggestion “Is it time to sell our seat on FiveEyes?” is from someone well placed by experience to form an educated opinion. “Trade sanctions of the type Australia is facing are a weapon used by both USA and China. So let’s have a debate on whether we need Five Eyes, or whether it’s time for us to trade on independently.”

Covid19 Vaccine Rollout and Global Inequality

Written By: - Date published: 7:46 am, February 2nd, 2021 - 24 comments

2023-2024 for a global rollout 0f the Covid vaccine will put stark lines of demarcation between which populations can trade and travel easily, and those who can’t. 

Twelve months of living with Covid

Written By: - Date published: 8:58 am, February 1st, 2021 - 21 comments

One year on from the declaration by the WTO that Covid was a public health emergency and with the benefit of hindsight it is interesting to see who heeded the scientific advice and how it worked out.

UK COVID-19 death toll hits 100,000 and The PM offers an insincere apology.

Written By: - Date published: 6:11 am, January 29th, 2021 - 21 comments

Originally posted on Nick Kelly’s Blog In late March 2020, the medical director of the NHS Stephen Powis said that keeping the UK COVID-19 death toll to under 20,000 would be a good result. Ten months later, almost to the day, the UK’s official death toll from COVID-19 hit 100,000, a few days after an […]

Are Revolutions A Good Idea?

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, January 23rd, 2021 - 24 comments

Revolt? Revolution? Pain in the ass? Depends, like comedy, on timing. And which side of history you end up on.

The UK is now the world’s Covid cot case

Written By: - Date published: 9:09 am, January 6th, 2021 - 25 comments

Well after the emergence of a mutated Covid virus that is much easier to spread and faced with surging infection rates Boris Johnson has put England into a lockdown similar but not as strong as New Zealand’s original lockdown.  But the question is, has he done too little too late?

No extradition for Assange

Written By: - Date published: 12:27 am, January 5th, 2021 - 104 comments

Great news. While unexpected, Nicky Hager who was an expert witness for Assange at the trial, thought this might be a possibility when he spoke to the Fabian Society in November. More details tomorrow.

Update: Bail application to be heard on Wednesday London time.

Chris Bishop goes woof woof on variant ‘B.1.1.7’

Written By: - Date published: 1:26 pm, December 28th, 2020 - 43 comments

I realise that this would normally be our silly season, but it seems a bit macabre with the northern winter death toll. But nothing really excuses Chris Bishop for being a complete dickhead in barking for immediate offshore testing for travellers from the UK. It is pointless. The government are a bit more sensible. They’re instituting an extra test at our border.

Brexit revisited

Written By: - Date published: 7:19 am, December 13th, 2020 - 19 comments

With Brexit looming there is talk of unfinished customs software and the possibility of chaos around ports, the UK’s food supply being compromised, and potential skirmishes with France at fishing spots.  And Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron are refusing to talk to Boris Johnson.  Hang on England, this is going to get wild.

A joy to read

Written By: - Date published: 9:24 am, December 10th, 2020 - 18 comments

There are the odd occasions when you find a political opinion that is a joy to read and quite revealing. An analysis piece by the Bagehot columnist that refers to the Conservatives as the dysmorphic Tory party completes its transition from the natural party of government into a British version of the Taliban…

Assisted dying law in New Zealand and the UK

Written By: - Date published: 6:05 am, December 9th, 2020 - 65 comments

Assisted Dying

There is now growing recognition internationally that the right to a dignified death is a fundamental human right. Assisted dying is not about reducing health care costs or pressuring those who are frail, old or disabled to end their life prematurely. It is about allowing those with a terminal illness the choice to die rather than face a period of significant physical decline and suffering before the end of their life.

The Covid crisis

Written By: - Date published: 11:43 am, November 1st, 2020 - 51 comments

A surge in Covid infections in Europe and in the United States is raising the specter that the most pessimistic predictions about the disease and its effect on the health system may occur.   And right wing governments appear to be spectacularly unable to deal with the crisis.

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