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The bubble pops

Written By: - Date published: 11:32 am, July 24th, 2021 - 32 comments

The appearance of community spread Delta variant Covid in Australia has caused New Zealand to suspend the trans Tasman travel bubble.

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.

Minister Robertson’s Economic Development Strategy

Written By: - Date published: 7:32 am, July 15th, 2021 - 20 comments

Minister Roberston’s recent speech to the Trans Tasman Business Circle sets out both how this government is using the pandemic to reset whole sectors of the economy, and also how it is getting its head around economic and social challenges. The points made were unsurprising, but his intended direction was unclear.

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”.

The Pausing of the Travel Bubble

Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, June 28th, 2021 - 81 comments

So far there have been no discovered cases of community spread of the Covid delta variant in Wellington following the recent visit by an Australian tourist who was infected with the variant.  Meanwhile in Australia the authorities are trying to stamp out community flareups that are appearing in different parts of the country.

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”.

Chris Bishop is tilting at Covid windmills

Written By: - Date published: 12:35 pm, May 26th, 2021 - 32 comments

Right now, in terms of our Covid response, New Zealand is in a unique position.  It has no community spread of Covid and its level of restrictions is the most permissive in the world.  But this does not stop Chris Bishop from trying to double guess the handling of the pandemic.

Budget 2021

Written By: - Date published: 12:37 pm, May 20th, 2021 - 71 comments

Headline change, budget is lifting weekly main benefit rates by between $32 and $55 per adult to tackle inequality and child poverty, as well as reinstating the Training Incentive Allowance.

Will we rebuild better?

Written By: - Date published: 7:34 am, May 17th, 2021 - 36 comments

There’s a question Covid19 allows us to ask that we haven’t been able to ask since the end of World War 2: can we all just co-operate to get along – as a species?

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.

Too much too far?

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, April 23rd, 2021 - 97 comments

As we lead up to Budget 2021, there’s much more shape to the whole direction of this government.

National’s very bad day

Written By: - Date published: 7:44 am, April 22nd, 2021 - 86 comments

Yesterday was a day where National focussed on dog whistle racism, supported religious extremists and moaned about workers receiving a modest increase in the minimum wage.

DHBs to go

Written By: - Date published: 8:20 am, April 21st, 2021 - 101 comments

Television New Zealand has reported that Andrew Little is to announce that district health boards are to go

Oh Canada! – let us not follow you.

Written By: - Date published: 3:19 pm, April 17th, 2021 - 23 comments

Looking at the vaccination program in NZ, I feel that many people are focusing on the wrong things. The most dangerous period in pandemic life cycle – gaining a sufficient population immunity fast enough to stop the inevitable complacency that allows another wave of infections. Ontario appears to have managed to get a new wave of infection rising as they are trying to run their vaccination program. That is the last thing we need.

The politics of the Covid vaccination roll out

Written By: - Date published: 8:15 am, April 12th, 2021 - 91 comments

Poor National.  Faced with a Government response to Covid that has been superb it is reduced to criticising the Government for not rolling out the Covid vaccine quickly enough.

The Covid India issue

Written By: - Date published: 9:13 am, April 9th, 2021 - 29 comments

This is a desperately difficult issue. India is currently experiencing a surge in Covid cases.  And faced with the prospect of quarantine beds being overrun if current trends continue the Government has taken the step of banning people entering the country if they have been in India during the two weeks prior to travel.

Bubble bubble toil and trouble

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 am, April 6th, 2021 - 42 comments

An announcement on the Trans Tasman bubble is expected this afternoon.

Doocey is taking the piss

Written By: - Date published: 7:49 am, March 26th, 2021 - 12 comments

Private member’s bills are an important feature of Parliament.  They give all MPs the chance to change the law to address real or perceived issues and problems.  So what does National MP Matt Doocey think is the country’s most pressing problem?

Something big but not like that

Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, March 23rd, 2021 - 41 comments

I am going out on a limb here but I think that Comrade Chris Trotter suggesting that Jacinda Ardern may resign as Prime Minister may be overhashed.

Covid Zeitgeist

Written By: - Date published: 12:04 pm, March 21st, 2021 - 31 comments

NZ politics needs recharging and renewal to move forward. We need more charging stations.

Vaccine Diplomacy

Written By: - Date published: 11:28 am, March 15th, 2021 - 19 comments

Vaccines have had a place in diplomacy since the Cold War. The country that can manufacture and distribute lifesaving injections to others less fortunate sees a return on its investment in the form of soft power. Today the country moving fastest towards consolidating these gains may be China.

The trans Tasman bubble

Written By: - Date published: 7:31 am, March 11th, 2021 - 72 comments

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has said New Zealanders have an unfettered ability to travel to Australia for a holiday.  Reality would suggest that he is wrong.

She might have saved us from Covid but she does not drink beer with Soper

Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, March 9th, 2021 - 99 comments

Newstalk ZB, Mike Hosking and Barry Soper are shocked, I tell you, shocked that Jacinda Ardern will no longer regularly appear on the Mike Hosking show.

Sugar is evil

Written By: - Date published: 9:18 am, March 6th, 2021 - 20 comments

With the recent High Court trial brought by three academics highlighting the undeserved attacks on their reputations by entities associated with the food industry now having concluded it is time for the Government to think about banning sugary drinks from schools.  And a sugar tax.

Senior Business Leaders Call Out To Government. Again

Written By: - Date published: 8:12 am, March 3rd, 2021 - 41 comments

Senior business leaders have called for more openness and clarity from the Government on its plan for getting New Zealand to “COVID normal”.  But have failed to say what they would do to contribute or what they are doing to help.

Level 3 again … be kind

Written By: - Date published: 10:16 am, February 28th, 2021 - 136 comments

Auckland is back into level three lockdown.

The case for mandatory legislative review

Written By: - Date published: 9:12 am, February 24th, 2021 - 15 comments

You can’t read legislation for very long without finding instances of weird edge cases. But is also why we have kids trying to walk or bike on gravel roads with no sidewalks to get to school. When modern cars travel these narrow lanes at up to 100km/hour. Parliament has no systematic way to review obsolete legislation.

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.

The Very, Very Lucky Country

Written By: - Date published: 8:18 am, February 17th, 2021 - 5 comments

While Australia is rightly branded The Lucky Country, it looks like we can reasonably be called the Very, Very Lucky Country.

Pandemic to endemic covid-19

Written By: - Date published: 9:30 am, February 13th, 2021 - 84 comments

Back in May, I wrote a post “Covid-19: may be endemic“. That is looking like it is more and more likely. The depth of infection in world populations means that recombinant variants are likely. Vaccines and previous immunity will reduce the death rates and infection rates. But won’t stop reinfection. Human behaviour will keep covid-19 as an endemic disease.

Managed isolation cleaners should be paid a living wage

Written By: - Date published: 7:47 am, February 12th, 2021 - 39 comments

Managed isolation facility cleaners, who the country desperately relies on, are struggling to survive on low wages while performing an absolutely vital role.

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