Written By: - Date published: 6:31 pm, July 7th, 2020 - 210 comments
Categories: national, same old national, the praiseworthy and the pitiful - Tags: ,

The golden rule is never call an inquiry if you don’t know what the result will be.  Which suggests that Chris Hipkins may have had more than an inkling that National was involved in the leaking of sensitive material to the media concerning returning kiwis who had been diagnosed with Covid.

Late this afternoon it has exploded in spectacular fashion.  Hamish Walker, he of the Indian, Pakistani and Korean slur has fessed up and said he had provided the information to the media.

Then Michelle Boag,  she of 18 previous Covid viruses fame, admitted that she was the one who had acquired the information and had fed it to Walker.

From Derek Cheng at the Herald:

National MP Hamish Walker has been stripped of his Opposition portfolios after admitting he passed confidential private details of Covid-19 patients to the media.

He has apologised in a statement today, and didn’t make a reference about whether he intended to remain as the Clutha-Southland candidate in September.

A privacy breach of 18 active Covid cases was revealed by the Weekend Herald, which the Government called serious and possibly criminal.

National leader Todd Muller said tonight that Walker had made an “error of judgment”.

He has stripped Walker of his shadow portfolios pending the outcome of an inquiry for the Government headed by Michael Heron QC, which was launched yesterday.

Boag has also done a mea culpa.

Boag said it was a “massive error of judgment on my part” and apologised.

“The information was made available to me in my position as then Acting CEO of the Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust, although it was sent to my private email address.

“This was a massive error of judgment on my part and I apologise to my colleagues at ARHT whom I have let down badly.

“I very much regret my actions and did not anticipate that Hamish would choose to send it on to some media outlets but I am grateful that the media involved have chosen not to publish the 18 names that were contained within it.”

Boag said she has resigned her position as acting chief executive of ARHT because of her actions.

This will go down like a cup of cold sick with the electorate.  The contrast between Jacinda’s principled way of doing politics and National’s tawdry use of private information for political gain is jarring.  And a vote changer.

Congratulations to the media for not releasing the information.  Shame on National.

210 comments on “Clusterfuck ”

  1. observer 1

    "Congratulations to the media for not releasing the information"

    A point that has been largely overlooked. In tabloid UK or USA, they would be knocking on the patient's door and getting footage of tears.

    Love how Boag dumps on Walker there: "I did not anticipate that Hamish would choose to send it on to some media outlets". (= I regret handing the murderer my gun, I never thought he would use it).

    • Incognito 1.1

      Plausible deniability.

    • dv 1.2

      Didn't expect him to use it, SO WHY did she send it to Marshall.


    • froggleblocks 1.3

      Well Hamish has to be quite a few sandwiches short of a picnic to think this was a good thing to do after he already got told off by Muller.

      He should have taken Boag's information and gone to Muller with it so they could determine how best to use it – Muller just putting out a press release saying he has it but wouldn't release it could have looked bad for the government, for example.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.3.1

        He should have taken Boag's information and gone to Muller with it so they could determine how best to use it

        No. He should have gone straight to the police. Boag handing it over to him was a crime. Considering that it turned up in her personal email account I suspect that her getting it was also a crime.

        Muller just putting out a press release saying he has it but wouldn't release it could have looked bad for the government, for example.

        Wouldn't have looked bad for the government at all. Muller having it and not going to the police with such a blatant crime makes National look bad for their abuse of power.

    • Matthew Whitehead 1.4

      Yep. Genuine gold star for all media personnel who had access and did the right thing. They are the real MVPs of this story, although Chris Hipkins has also definitely shown why he's warming that ministerial seat right now.

  2. UncookedSelachimorpha 2

    But it's their moral duty to win the election! Go Morality!!

    Seriously – thank god this lot aren’t in charge of the country. Gummint in waiting – well, keep waiting a lot longer I hope.

  3. riffer 3

    I should be staggered at this.

    I'm not. I guess Mr Muller ain't looking forward to the next poll.

  4. We always knew she was part of the National "Dirty Ops", but this certainly confirms our suspicions. It also confirms they had a plan to make the Government look sloppy.

    The government should track every incident back to its source. This "outing" may be to avoid further scrutiny. I don't trust them.

    The media were better behaved here, by not taking advantage.

    • Just Is 4.1

      Yes Patricia, those two are the sacrificial lambs to try and stop any further harm to the brand and find the rest of the support team members.

      This will now plague their election campaign, right up till polling day I hope.

    • I Feel Love 4.2

      Spot on, Boag quote "I think I've saved the QC a lot of work", Hipkins says the inquiry will continue. Boag, Walker, Hooton & Muller must be shitting themselves.

    • Gabby 4.3

      I know, why did they cave so quickly?

  5. Treetop 5

    What did Boag think she was going to gain by sending names of Covid-19 cases to Walker?

    Boag needs to take FULL responsibility for her meddling.

  6. Just Is 6

    Just one word for it


  7. Chris 7

    Would be the icing on the cake if Hooton were involved. It's right up his alley.

  8. observer 8

    Muller was happy with Bishop and Woodhouse using leaks (or claims) earlier, so this is really on him. Walker's just taken it a step further, and in effect his defence is that he thought it was what he was being asked to do.

    "I did this to expose the Government’s shortcomings so they would be rectified. It was never intended that the personal details would be made public, and they have not been, either by me or the persons I forwarded them to.”

    I love how he re-defines "not made public" as "sent to the media who fortunately have higher ethics than me."

  9. MAGA Muller has learnt a lot from his idol

  10. Matiri 10

    Wonder if Michelle Boag has a holiday home in Queenstown?

  11. Ovid 11

    Turns out the real shambles was the National Party all along.

    • georgecom 11.1

      yup. A shabby little MP for Southland (as well as a shabby little ex president) and a shambles of a caucus. Muller was pontificating how his party would be more competent than Labour running the post Covid situation. Lol. Really Todd? Your shabby shambles running the country

  12. In Vino 12

    I always had this nasty feeling that Muller would be manoeuvred out, and it would be Nikki Kaye as leader in a head-on with Jacinda… aping Labour's manoeuvre last election.

    A conspiracy theory, I know, and, of course, I may be wrong…

    But I foresee the possible casting off or resignation of Muller, and the emergence of a shining, new Nikki Kaye, whose dazzling, newfound oratory and leadership will be mightily magnified by the compliant media.

    (I just wanted to be first to suggest it in case it actually happens.)

    • Anne 12.1

      Yeah… its a better conspiracy theory than mine on the DR post which was:

      It was going to left lying around at a – coincidentally – strategic place.

    • Muttonbird 12.2

      Ardern would destroy Kaye head-to-head.

      • Incognito 12.2.1

        With kindness?

        • In Vino

          Nats remember Kaye beating Ardern in a certain electorate, and someone silencing her with, "Zip it, Sweetie."

          I think Jacinda was keeping her powder dry at the time, and I agree that she would now win.

          But don't expect a fair contest.

          • newsense

            When the speaker is protecting you whatever 'we don't have a measure for child poverty *hysterical laughter*' flippantness wins the debate.

            Do you think it was really this Hamish? Seems like a quick scapegoat for those higher up.

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 12.2.2

        Kaye would probably have a better chance than Muller, though.

    • Leighton 12.3

      Not saying you're right, but the sabotage theory would at least explain why Kaye has uncharacteristically been behaving like a lobotomised chimp since becoming deputy leader. In the past I have regarded her reasonably highly amongst the National caucus but have asked "What's Wrong With Her?" more than once over the last six weeks.

  13. mickysavage 13

    Now Heron QC can summons Boag and Walker to give evidence and tell them to bring their laptops. This is a potential can of worms for National.

    • weka 13.1

      do you know where the information came from originally? I'm trying to make sense of Walker's statement that he didn't break the law. How is this not a straight out breach of the Privacy Act?

      • SPC 13.1.1

        Walker is claiming its pretty legal because it was not a password protected spreadsheet – given how he got it how would he know – who told him, those who gave the info to Boag …

        Boag is claiming she had work right to the info, yet it came to her via a private email.

        • weka

          from memory, you can't release private information if it can be reasonably expected that the person who the information is about wouldn't want it released. It's possible that Walker will argue he didn't believe the info he had was covered by the Act eg because he's not a govt official?, but the password stuff is a nonsense

          • maggieinnz

            Agreed Weka. Even if Boag had a work-based right to the info she still would have been bound by confidentiality in her contract.

            • McFlock

              I was wondering why she talked about private email, but it might make it more difficult to charge in a criminal sense. The Queenstown bouncer who leaked security footage of the England cricketer was done for "dishonestly obtaining property by accessing a computer system".

              If it just turned up in her own email account, she wasn't [ahem] being dishonest in how she got it.

              • maggieinnz

                It will be interesting to see how that unfolds. Yes, the private email thing is odd and I'm wondering if by having the info sent to her private email instead of work email then it would be a different legal process to get evidence of wrong-doing (as in, her private email can only be investigated once criminal proceedings are underway and only after a search warrant is issued – maybe).

                I don't think she has any grounds to claim she wasn't being dodgy AF considering she already had legitimate rights of access via her role. It was passing it on that gets her in trouble. I'm wondering what else she's hiding…

                • McFlock

                  I don't think she cares about dodgy AF, just being better at sailing close to the "pretty legal" line than Joyce was.

                  • maggieinnz

                    Yep. The legality thing is tricky in this situation given the protections politicians seem to have. Ethically the situation is black and white.

                    I was thinking about it last night/this morning and agree that her main concern would be to avoid charges which would screw up her post-politics career choices.

                • Kiwijoker

                  This thing has a long,long tail. Of all the natzi mps why did the toad send the information to a junior back bencher.? Why not send it to the louse? Who sent it to the Toad?

                  the natzi apparatus in Clutha needs to be investigated and subjected to rigorous IQ testing to explain why they have inflicted a series of amoral clods on the country.

                  Deep State, 5G anyone?

            • Frida

              I don't buy that there was a work-related reason for her to receive the info. I don't see why the CEO of a Helicopter Trust needs access to a list of Covid patients. There's no discernible reason for that so either further digging needs to be done to ascertain who gave MB the information and why and if it is legitimate, questions need to be asked by the Privacy Commissioner as to how secure NZers health information really is.

              • maggieinnz

                Yeah, you could be right, Frida. I simply meant that as CEO she probably didn't have to hack the system (or get anyone else to) in order to get at the info. In this way, it offers her plausible deniability but I agree that it probably wasn't info she would normally require to do her job.

      • Matthew Whitehead 13.1.2

        Boag is certainly the proximate source if not the original source, and claims to have had access to it in her role as CEO of the rescue helicopter trust.

        This is slightly dubious: while she may be an authorized recipient, she was probably not a rightfully authorized recipient and should never have leaked it further: it's hard to see why she would need personal information in that capacity, and her disclosure was certainly not related to her job and has in fact proven she is unfit for positions of public trust, like running a charity.

        All she needed to do was tell Walker it was accessible and to report it to the authorities. Would have made himself look much more effective and perhaps even justify that he was "treating the issue seriously" with more credulous commentators, but clearly National is in such disarray not only can the backbench not perform basic hits, they're not smart enough to have someone the trust to instruct them properly on what to do.

        Walker could try to claim his leak was a statement in his capacity as an MP to the media and thus covered by Parliamentary Privilege, but intuitively (ie. IANAL!) that seems like a big stretch. Looking forward to hearing from actual lawyers on this once enough info is clear for them to weigh in.

        • weka

          I was meaning original as in it came from the MoH, rather than say a hotel? (I didn't follow the story the other day).

          I really hope they go after both of them. Whatever 'error of judgement' they've got going on in their heads, this shit needs to be dealt with really publicly so that everyone knows where the boundaries are again.

          • Matthew Whitehead

            There's massive calls from even centrists wanting Walker's and Boag's heads. I'm not sure this is survivable for them in their current roles, although there's the possibility that Muller's position is so weak he can't force Walker to resign, which is really not a good thing for either of them, to be quite honest: Walker is then left dead walking, rather than moved on to a cushy aligned private sector position for "doing the right thing by his party." I'd be shocked if Boag's board aren't calling an emergency meeting about how to censure her.

            And yeah, the primary source of the info isn't very clear yet, but knowing that Boag is the one who accessed it and through which org should make tracing it a lot easier, so we will probably know tomorrow, or at least Soon™.

        • mickysavage

          Her wording is interesting. She says:

          “The information was made available to me in my position as then Acting CEO of the Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust, although it was sent to my private email address.”

          So the next question is who sent it to her? Was it someone from within the organisation, presumably? And why to her private email address?

          • Matthew Whitehead

            Yep. Implies it's a case of: "oh, it will be easier to deal with what Boag needs by just giving her inappropriate access to too much data, but we can't do that officially, so we'll use our private addresses to provide her access to an unsecured data dump."

            That would be enough of a story that they could have run with that, but Walker got racist, and then got defensive about being racist, and flubbed it majorly.

            • Muttonbird

              Also, the statement from Walker made certain his sending of this information to the media was to back up his story that foreigners were going to invade Queenstown.

              In all respects it seems like information to order. The Nats needed it and Boag provided through her RW contacts in the MoH.

              • Matthew Whitehead

                They don't even need to be right-wing contacts. They can just be credulous public servants, or she could have a manager who's a personal friend that isn't even political. If you have a semi-credible need for information that isn't going to end up in media hands, the public sector tends to trip over itself to give it to you.

                • Muttonbird

                  Indeed. The Nats know this and they've been trying to use it for 12 years now.

                  The finer points are crucial here. IS there a massive problem with the RW politicisation in the public service, or do has been old Nat dinosaurs still have unwarranted access to government info whenever they feel like it?

                  • Matthew Whitehead

                    I doubt it's politicization, to be honest. It's more likely an issue of us not making official information accessible to the public, and making personal information WAY TOO accessible for people who don't need it without reasonable audit practices. The assumption for each of those needs to be reversed- even allied NGOs need to show good reason they need access to data before they get it. It's a wider culture issue that is worsened by Labour's institutional distrust of open information.

                    If all public servants regularly have to think about what sort of information is and should be accessible, they won't be routinely handing it out to dinosaurs like Boag when it contains unnecessary personal details, even if they are running an allied NGO.

          • gsays

            Boag's wording has a weaselness to it, in that she seems to be using the chopper trust as a shield or distraction.

            Nothing concrete, but these political operators use words and langauge very shrewdly.

            Heh, look at me, telling that to a lawyer.

            Even Mullers utterances on this, so far, don't put him in the clear. Despite what Wayne reckons down thread.

          • maggieinnz

            "And why to her private email address?"

            What if she sent it to herself?

            She could claim she was doing some legitimate work from home so sent the docs to her private email thus being able to claim an 'oops' moment rather than intentionally stealing data. (actually, this is what McFlock suggested here)

          • Kiwijoker

            I maybe off base but if someone knicks my tv, gives it to someone else who then uses it, is the receiver not guilty of a crime?

          • RJL

            Reasonable chance that she sent it to herself.

            Seems very likely that ARHT has access to this sort of information as a provider of ambulance-like services. So that pilots know where to go.

            It's also unsurprising that Boag, as acting CEO has sufficient internal IT privileges with ARHT to access that information, even though she wouldn't normally need it on a day to day basis. It also wouldn't be especially surprising for someone else in the company to email that info to her, if she asked. Needing data on "places we could need to fly to" sounds pretty legit. for the CEO.

            After all, if you can't trust the CEO with company confidential info. who can you trust?

  14. woodart 14

    this should be the end of boag being reactivated as tv mouthpiece on political programmes.

    • Marcus Morris 14.1

      Certainly hope so. She has got away with spouting her bias for years on "The Panel". In recent times I have tuned in to the Concert programme while she at the microphone.

  15. bwaghorn 15

    Calling christ t come in christ t

    What's your take????🤣🤣🤣😁

  16. observer 16

    Tomorrow morning Muller has his weekly media rounds, all the usual radio & TV. He might want to have a sudden laryngitis, overnight. "Nikki, you're up …".

  17. UncookedSelachimorpha 17

    And Muller had the gall to use the leak to criticise the government – while it was his own band of muppets doing the despicable and utterly immoral deeds!

    Todd Muller said the breach was "quite staggering, it talks to a government that's slipping off the side of a cliff, in terms of managing this issue, the border, the informaton pertaining to it".

    "If they can't manage personal information, bluntly, they can't manage the border and they can't manage the country."

    From the National Party's perspective, Muller said it was "unacceptable" and they would see where it ended up.

    "Is it a deliberate leak or is it accidental? It doesn't really matter at a level … it's loose, it's shabby and it's a reminder these guys can't manage important things well," he said.

    "These guys need to step aside and let a competent government take over."

    • McFlock 17.1

      Things that didn't age well #57 🙂

    • observer 17.2

      I had forgotten that (things move fast!).

      It's an extraordinary statement. He's not smart enough for some devious Game of Thrones chess move, so I'm sure he didn't know about Walker when he said that.

      It's almost embarrassing how lonely he is in that caucus. His MPs don't respect or fear a caretaker, why would they?

      • weka 17.2.1

        would have thought not getting such a thrashing at the election might have been a motivation to at least pretend.

        • Draco T Bastard

          I doubt he's got the capability to pretend that well.

        • observer

          That should be the case, but as we saw (to some extent) with Labour in opposition, when things are going badly then individual MPs will look after themselves.

          It's noticeable how many of the problems are coming from MPs with safe seats (Penk, Walker, even Bridges, more subtly) or high list placings. So Hamish loses his Indian/Korean colleagues, down the list? Won't worry him much.

    • Wayne 17.3


      All of that clearly indicates Todd Muller was completely unaware of how the information was leaked. He was obviously unaware of the involvement of either Walker or Boag.

      • observer 17.3.1

        I agree with you, Wayne.

        That an MP would act without talking to the leader's office is surprising. That he would do it after already being publicly reprimanded for his earlier press statement is simply incredible.

      • Matthew Whitehead 17.3.2

        Which isn't really particularly good. Combine that with the fact that Walker has not yet resigned and it gives the impression that he has no control over his caucus. If he can't require a resignation for this, what use is he, even as a patsy leader?

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 17.3.3

        True, he was having a shot without knowing his facts.

      • McFlock 17.3.4

        oh, true.

        God, there are so many levels of fucktitude in this. And there's still the question of whether someone followed protocols when generating and distributing the document to authorised people, and at what stage(s) that all went awry.

  18. McFlock 18

    Any organisation that employs Boag in the future will do so in the full knowledge that it be sacrificed by her for a cheap headline for the nats.

    Seriously, a wilful breach like this could cancel contracts and decline data requests, even destroy an organisation. I cannot overstate how much of a… transgression this is in the culture of the health sector. It's like walking into a Greenpeace meeting eating a whalemeat sandwich.

    • I Feel Love 18.1

      Yep McFlock, Westpac Rescue will be livid and may have something to say about this. Boag could still be lying as it went to her private email…

      • McFlock 18.1.1

        Nah, I suspect the doc was generated by the ministry and they knew exactly the small group that was in the recipient list. Hell, it might only have been sent to ARHT (they might run a westpac-branded chopper, but she was in the auckland trust) for their specific needs.

        Possibly the easiest leak inquiry ever.

  19. Brian Tregaskin 19

    This is the precise point in time that National has lost any chance of wining the Election

    • Incognito 19.1

      As long as they take out the Epsom Anomaly.

      • Just Is 19.1.1

        There is a potential Northland seat Anomaly that could quite easily occur to offset Epsom.

        It's happened before, it could, if need be, happen again

        [Fixed your user name]

      • georgecom 19.1.2

        yup, a few % points down and as things, I believe, currently stand Paora Goldsmith will have to win his seat to get back, and then watch him try to rip Seymour to shreds. I must remember to buy some pop corn for that. Seymour would be crapping himself, actually having to campaign for a seat rather than be gifted one.

    • Just Is 19.2

      I'm inclined to agree with you.

      In they're endeavor to defame the Govt they've just squandered what little was left of their credibility.

      A complete contrast in behavior to the Labour Party

    • Muttonbird 19.3

      No, that was when they made Simon the leader. All downhill from there.

  20. Byd0nz 20

    to Chris T. Human error eh!

    • I Feel Love 20.1

      heh, I agreed with him too, he also used that defence pretty early on, interesting.

    • Chris T 20.2

      I said I couldn't see any politidal gain from it being political, so most likely was human error.

      It obviously wasnt but there seems no political gain.

      But if it gives you the jollies thinking you win something, I was wrong.


      • Muttonbird 20.2.1

        Problem is your whole values system is based on shifting sands and corruption.

  21. Katipo 21

    I wonder if …

    (a) it was obvious from the private email or

    (b) she decided later

    that she was sent the list because of her role as the Acting CEO of Auckland Rescue Trust?

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 21.1

      Given the national interest, I am sure Boag will be forthcoming with full details of the private email. Seeing how she is wanting to put right a wrong and all.

    • Matiri 21.2

      or maybe she had access to the MoH system in her capacity as Acting CEO of Auckland Rescue Trust, did a bit of snooping around and forwarded the list to her private email.

      • Matthew Whitehead 21.2.1

        It could also legitimately be that the info is poorly secured, but if so, that's even less of an excuse for how Walker acted: it's much easier to just score points by embarassing the government by showing you have access to information you shouldn't, and being able to say you reported it as you take it to the media.

    • Draco T Bastard 21.3

      I doubt that she'd be sent it as part of her role as Acting CEO of Auckland Rescue Trust. Its not something that she would need to know in that role.

    • Chris T 21.4

      And I am still wondering if it had simple password only access configuration on the file.

  22. Brian Tregaskin 22

    "I did this to expose the Government’s shortcomings so they would be rectified. It was never intended that the personal details would be made public, and they have not been, either by me or the persons I forwarded them to.”

    More to come out of this –someone (possible MOH insider) logged into a system and did an export to csv or excel or even a copy and paste screen scrape. Remember the data has to be stored somewhere and logged into to get it the first place. I don’t think she got the data for the excel sheet herself.

    Even a bank could not stop an employee with a login and authorised access to that system stealing customer account details. The one hack you can not prevent is from your own employees.

    • McFlock 22.1

      A number of good reasons come to mind to have such a list generated. I doubt it was maliciously generated – but that leaves "cockup" or even "not actually a data breach until it turned up in Boag's personal email account".

  23. Treetop 23

    Will Boag show on the Nation or Q & A?

    Not on the panel an interview.

    Total humiliation and she makes a mockery of her past statements of similar incidents concerning others.

    All she can do is apologise, unfortunately her behaviour was off the scale.

  24. logie97 24

    Boag was on the RNZ Panel this afternoon.

    It seemed that some of her comments were unusually muddled. Even before the show in the section "I have been thinking…"

    She started with "I've been thinking about the Pandemic and immediately opined about Global warming. And then she later talked about the Yeti in the Rocky Mountains – Perhaps she was aware of the bomb that was about to explode and expose her – she was actually late arriving for the show – was she trying to get her ducks in a line as she was entering the RNZ studio?

    One hopes that Wallace Chapman will announce why Boag will not be invited onto his show again.

    • Peter 24.1

      I have written to RNZ saying a person with that level of integrity should not be on any of their forums. I encourage everyone to do the same.

    • ScottGN 24.2

      Hopefully this means I’ll never have to listen to the old trout on the radio again.

    • Lenore 24.3

      Wow really? Definitely should be off the panel list and about time, she is such a smug tosser. I hope the true blue Nats won't keep to their trumpian loyalty and really see this for the dirty politics that it is. To use vulnerable people for their own ends. And to think how Mullethead was going on in the weekend about it and probably going to do a major backtrack and still try and find a way to undermine the govt. This was more than a bloody 'error of judgement'. I think Hipkins handled it quite well and makes sense that they had an idea who it could be to launch the investigation and backed the rats into a corner so they had to fess up. How do we stop Boag from getting other high positions? Surely this has legal implications beyond her just being able to resign and get away with it?

    • Ed 24.4

      Ironically, she was talking about adversarial politics on the Panel.

      At around 4.10 p.m.

      Given what happened an hour and a half later, quite interesting to hear her opine on the matter.

      In hopefully her last ever platform on national radio.

  25. infused 25

    Most National voters we're already going to vote ACT. I think this cements that.

    I said a few months ago ACT were going to poll close, if not over 5%

  26. Anne 26

    Sounds like her mind was on other matters. 😉

  27. UncookedSelachimorpha 27

    Just took an indulgent glance at kiwiblog (yuk!yuk!yuk!) – only do at times like this, next time will hopefully be the night National get flogged in the election.

    The angle there is "bad judgement, really bad judgement, bad bad judgement"

    No awareness of the lack of morality or that these dirty tactics are the wrong way to operate.

  28. Ken 28

    Dirty rotten nasty National, laid bare for all to see – and just before an election too.

    Boag and Walker both know that personal medical records are confidential – whether it's written on them or not.

    This kind of dirty politics goes right back to Bennett leaking social welfare info to get at people who criticised her.

    Hopefully, this will wake up a few more people to the fact that national is not fit to be in charge of our personal private information.

    The Nats' desperation has finally got the better of them.

  29. I'd love to see Hipkins put Woodhouse under the blow torch for the fake report of a homeless person getting 2 weeks in isolation for free. That was a made up story and he did it to create noise – pure dirty politics. The fact is a thorough review found no such thing happened and those lying right wingers should be publicly shamed for their lies.

    That would nicely follow this little story.

  30. observer 30

    Now that I've read Muller's full statement, it really looks weak:

    "Error of judgement" is when an MP says something silly like Russell and Coffey did a while back. Whoops, gaffe, sorry.

    This is vastly worse. Muller doesn't want to comment further … that is absurd. He has no choice. If he tries the old "what about … the real issue is" evasion then he's toast.

    His big line on Clark was "I would have sacked him long before". Todd the leader, tough guy, man with standards. Let's see tomorrow.

  31. ScottGN 31

    Muller’s response so far has been utterly inadequate. If he persists with this ‘I’m disappointed but I’ll wait for the results of the official inquiry’ bullshit he’s going to get crucified.

    • Muttonbird 31.1

      Muller just doesn't seem interested in the job at all. Why the fuck did he roll Bridges?

      • ScottGN 31.1.1

        Cos he was conned into thinking he was going to get a coronation by the Nat operatives who just wanted him to staunch the blood loss at the election. And that includes Hooten.

      • Ken 31.1.2

        Because the nats panicked when it looked like eighteen of them were going to drop off the list.

        They should have let Simon carry the can for the election and started afresh after September – now they've trashed Nikki Kaye's career as well.

        • ScottGN

          They’re going to be fortunate if it is only 18 the way things are going. This is some serious overreach.

        • In Vino

          Or may Nikki not now stage a leadership challenge, and arise a late-anointed, new and pure leader (just as Jacinda did), to be Joan of Arc for the National Party (as Jacinda was for Labour) ?

          Yes, I know that Andrew Little resigned for Jacinda to take over, but Muller could easily do the same, the way things are going for him..

    • ianmac 31.2

      Yes Scott because Walker has confessed already. Therefore it is not necessary to wait (until it is all forgotten.) for the Inquiry result. Ha!

  32. ScottGN 32

    Can’t wait til Chippie gets on a roll with this!

    • Muttonbird 32.1

      He's good. Remember day one in parliament this term when Simon and Jami-Lee fucked him over on the numbers in parliament voting for speaker?

      Chippie will have his revenge in spades…

  33. Ed 33

    Words fail me.

    So I’ll leave it to Dr Siouxsie Wiles

    “It’s horrendous that personal patient information was able to be leaked like this. But Michelle Boag’s conduct is utterly despicable. It’s heartbreaking trusted powerful people are working so hard to undermine what New Zealand has achieved. They are putting us in great danger.”

    • ScottGN 33.1

      This should be the banner headline for the nation tomorrow. It won’t be but it really should be.

      • Ed 33.1.1


        These words in particular…….

        “It’s heartbreaking trusted powerful people are working so hard to undermine what New Zealand has achieved. They are putting us in great danger.”

        Team of 4,999,998.

    • mauī 33.2

      Ed, thank you.

  34. Ed 34

    Looks like Nikki Kaye is fronting the breakfast T.V. shows tomorrow.

    6.55 a.m. on TVNZ.

    7.10 a.m. on TV3.

    Wonder why Todd is not fronting?

  35. gsays 35

    This current brouhaha speaks to poor leadership.

    As much Bridges/Bennett as Muller/Kaye.

    Just recently Muller turned Bridges down as Foreign Affairs spokesperson. Bridges responds by lunching with the visiting European Union delegate.

    Bridges gets handed Foreign Affairs.

    Woodhouse creates a story about an interloper slipping into the quarantine.

    Woodhouse sits on a story about possible Covid contact to maximise the politics of it.

    All on Mullers watch.

    I vainly thought the re-emergence of Woodhouse (Outhouse) and his toilet seat antics would prompt some leadership alas, no.

    Contrast all this with the leadership and behaviour from two of the parties on the other side of the house.

  36. Nzsage 36

    Who would have thought you could overdose on schadenfreude and yet here I am.

  37. Ad 37

    Takes 3% off National and gifts it back to Labour. Helps stem the 9% reversal.

    2 months to go, excellent timing.

    I'm sure we could get at least a pre-trial hearing for Boag and Walker in that time.

    Hope they get Judge Morris.

  38. Heather Tanguay 38

    So this is shambolic, Toad Muller. This is a disgusting peice of work, looks like a whole new Dirty Politics book. Chris Hopkins did a good job, he is not going to let this go and neither he should, it is despicable. Toad's response was weak, trying to play it all down. Judith will be more confident than ever.

    • Chris T 38.1

      Is there really a need to call politicians names?

      Unless you are about 12 of course

      • Incognito 38.1.1

        I agree, Chris Hopkins is just lame.

        • greywarshark

          Chris T there is a great need to make up pointed or ironic names about politicians. It is the only brightener in the usually grey task of looking at those running the country supposedly. So, for those staunch types who sometimes get tired, with ennui, a little humour and fun-poking is delivered and deserved by pollies et Al and lightens the load. Which errant pollies should find placed on them, like Sisyphus.

  39. idle dog 39

    Presumably Todt Mullet is being undermined from within. Is Boag a tool for Key and his annointed one?

    Listening to CEO (CEO!) of Small Business Voice on Morning Report yesterday (soft-ball Nat electioneering) I was surprised at the shallowness of thinking and mindless repetition of slogans that passes for neo-liberal thinking these days. They've had it their way for so long they've forgotten how to think! Unfortunately Todt Mullet is the cream on the top of that sour bottle.

    Next-gen Nats (gNats) are going to be purely oligarchical with all the attendant wealth and media assets. The election after this one needs to be fought now I think. What a delicious irony that Labour could campaign on immigration and border control, migrant visas and defending the NZ worker! Small and not so small business will have to think quick…innovation and entrepreneurship anyone? lol

  40. George 40

    Begs a few questions..many in the comments above.

    But…the information these two had and claim they were "sent" which they also claim to know the source of… down to the details of whether there was or was not password protection on that source sounds extremely dodgy to me. To have absolute knowledge of that with enough conviction to feel confident that they could put it into the public arena like this implies they knew it and saw it at the source then simply arranged for it to be sent to Michelle etc. Otherwise it was just heresay. They could potentially have been shown other people's personal health records as well which is really disturbing. The whole story stinks…I used to work in health this has the stench of people covering their butts now they think they could be in trouble with the law and get caught.

  41. greywarshark 41

    Love the pic – it's been around for a while but you'll never get a more attractive pic of her so go on using it till the day she's very old and…purple?

  42. Ben 42

    I believe the reason Boag had the list was for National party assets to contact Covid patients and ask them about failings in their quarantine

  43. Climaction 43

    What absolute pieces of shit.

    • Muttonbird 43.1

      That RW people would say this means the Nats are looking at the worst defeat ever.

      Just take that silly runt, Seymour, with you.

      • George 43.1.1

        Seymour and his new NRA affiliates? I wonder how the libertarian matrons of Remuera are reconciling that?

  44. Treetop 44

    Is there a name on the list which Boag and Walker want to single out?

  45. Brian Tregaskin 45

    What we all suspect -there is a 'tainted' employee in MOH or a MOH Contractor somewhere out there causing all the damage and they need to be found quickly. Bet you NZSIS have probably been called in to assist.

  46. Tiger Mountain 46

    It has been apparent since 2017 that there are National snouts galore in the Public Sector who actively undermine the Govt.

    It is way past time to expose and deal to some of them. National’s dirty tricks squad seems to have just got bigger and more slippery since our glorious ex leader Mr Key scarpered.

    I don’t buy the “honourable media” angle-this toxic stink bomb of a leak was quite likely to have revealed some of their precious sources-the journalists were trying to prevent blow back!

    • I Feel Love 46.1

      Yep, has DP writ all over it, Tova didn't get this scoop! Be very interesting what comes out of the woodwork next few days, media got burnt last time, have they learnt anything? Trusting Boag, ffs!

  47. ianmac 47

    What rotten people are in that lot. Dirty Tricks back in 2012.

    Claire Curran today said,

    The worst of it was in 2012, when she was sent photos from the National Party's Mainland Region conference, one showing fellow Dunedin-based MP, National's Michael Woodhouse, posed with a blue toilet seat with her face emblazoned on it.

    The seat was reportedly used as a trophy for a debating competition."I was so shocked when I saw it. I have never been able to speak of it publicly because I felt embarrassed. I still feel quite traumatised by it," she told The Spinoff.

    "They were literally encouraging people to piss on me."

  48. RedLogix 48

    Gone by tomorrow lunchtime … angry

  49. observer 49

    Prediction (dig it up later and mock!):

    Muller tonight is doing the phones. Judging by RW social media (limited sample) he'll be under pressure to "show leadership". A lot of Nat voters want Walker gone.

    Tomorrow he will disown Walker. Best outcome for Nats is for Walker to announce tomorrow that he's quitting Parliament (pressure behind scenes, we know how it works).

    If Walker refuses to go, then Muller has to get caucus to expel him. ASAP.

    If Walker is still in Nat caucus next week, then Muller's leadership is fatally wounded.

    My guess is Walker will be gone (i.e. not standing for National) by end of week.

    • anker 49.1

      Observer, you are right, but what if Todd can't expel Walker or pressure him to step down cause he was aware of the leak……… If Walker walks he could become another Jami lee tell all. Muller is in a lot of trouble over this. It looked so weak that Walker has lost his shadow port folio of forestry and land info. Yes a really really serious consequence. NOT

      • George 49.1.1

        Walker might walk..but will Boag boogie off? She's been a zealous stalwart of National forever. Since the information "came to/through" her…then she passed it on to him he was technically a messenger. Is Michelle going to resign from national is my question?

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 49.2

      Cauterise the wound will be National's strategy from here.

    • Graeme 49.3

      The electorate executive tried to get rid of him in March, he's got up a few noses just like his predecessor. And just as likely to trip over himself as his predecessor.

      This has been coming for a while.

  50. Ron Wilson 50

    What Boag doesn't say it's whether she had also resigned as a Trustee of the Auckland Helicopter Trust. She was only acting CEO which she had now relinquished but she must also resign as a Trustee

    • George 50.1

      I feel very sorry for the Auckland Helicopter Rescue Trust right now. I bet they have a few regrets.

      • anker 50.1.1

        I feel sorry for the helicopter trust. On the other hand what were they thinking appointing Boag.

        • In Vino

          You mean the Westpac Rescue Helicopter crowd, the marketing division of the profit-gouging Westpac bank??

          Give me a break – masquerading as do-gooders, they con dumb individuals into donating to their Westpac marketing budget!

  51. anker 51

    Observer, you are right, but what if Todd can't expel Walker or pressure him to step down cause he was aware of the leak……… If Walker walks he could become another Jami lee tell all. Muller is in a lot of trouble over this. It looked so weak that Walker has lost his shadow port folio of forestry and land info. Yes a really really serious consequence. NOT

  52. Muttonbird 52

    God I hate Boag.

    • In Vino 52.1

      Why? She has just given the Left a great boost, unless it is all part of a catastrophic plan.

  53. Weasel 53

    This from Pattrick Smellie on Businessdesk:

    Parliamentary records show Boag and Walker have had dealings in the promotion of legislation on behalf of at least one client of Boag's.

    In August last year, NZ First MP Tracey Martin accused Walker in Parliament of sponsoring a private members' bill promoted by Boag to enable foster parents and guardians to enrol children in their care in KiwiSaver schemes – a bill that NZ First supported.

    Boag gained notoriety when she organised the unauthorised videotaping of parts of the 'winebox' inquiry into tax avoidance when working for Fay, Richwhite, the merchant bank at the centre of the inquiry.

    That incident led to questions about her suitability for the presidency of the National Party, which she won in 2001, going on to work with then leader Bill English to what was a historic defeat.

    She was involved also in the so-called Saudi sheep deal, a project that saw a New Zealand-style sheep farm established in the Saudi Arabian desert as part of an effort by then Foreign Minister and long-time Boag confidant Murray McCully to seal a trade deal in the Middle East.

    Boag remains an executive adviser to the New Zealand Middle East Business Council. She told BusinessDesk she wouldn't be resigning any other roles.

    • Lettuce 53.1

      "She (Boag) told BusinessDesk she wouldn't be resigning any other roles."

      That's what Shipley said after she lost the Mainzeal insolvency case. Reality caught up with her very quickly after that as I recall.

    • FAB mouse 53.2

      The links with Murray McCully maybe continuing.

      "The board members are Hone Harawira, Honourable Murray McCully, Maru Nihoniho, Michelle Boag and our Managing Director Jevan Goulter."

      But the website is "… just renovating, and we will be right back soon."

      I'm intregued at the mix on the board.

    • Ad 53.3

      If Boag is charged, there is just a chance that her pastry-encrusted wriggling baked maggot pie of political manipulation would be sliced open steaming and served right back at her, on a plate, in court evidence.

      And that would be a thing to behold.

      • greywarshark 53.3.1

        Such a feast for the eyes Ad that you are offering this morning, hot and strong.

    • greywarshark 53.4

      Weasel you are better than Felicity Ferret of historic note. That is so interesting. A well-tossed salad with piquant dressing. An interesting dish.

  54. RedBaronCV 54

    In the past I have done a post on the Helicopter Rescue Trust covering governance etc (they were wanting money from the Auckland City council. ) and I don't think we need to feel sorry for them. I'd link it but my search function doesn't work for this site

    I'm actually shocked that they are on the list for so much health data. They would need it for those they transport but I don't see any reason why they need or should have access to the wider health system.

    And why did anyone in that chain think it was okay to view and distribute private health data.

  55. RRM 55

    Hamish Walker leaks a govt document to the media –

    GONE by lunchtime.


    Meka Whaitiri assaults her staff –

    Jacinda mumbles something about absolutely not her expectations.

    This is a prime opportunity for Muller to show the country, that electing a leader with balls is an option in September.

    • Ad 55.1

      Best of luck with that.

    • observer 55.2

      "I am proud to lead a fantastic team. And they are shits, so I show leadership by getting rid of them."

      You might want to consider the slight flaw in your logic, RRM.

  56. Kiwijoker 56

    Ben Thomas forced to eat a rat on TV1 this morning.

  57. observer 57

    So Muller did what he needed to do in the morning interviews. Walker will be gone (after due process and all that).

    That will kill one problem for National (IF Walker goes quietly) but won't kill the other two: the influence of Boag and her good friends in caucus, and the use of the leaks to attack the government. There's no way Woodhouse can pop up next week and say "I have a source that says …". That little pipeline of "scandals" is discredited now.

    • Muttonbird 57.1

      The government still have to find that National Party source in the public service.

      If that person isn't found and charged it will continue to undermine Kiwis confidence in their democracy.

  58. Ad 58

    Hipkins is looking like the right guy for the job.

    He will keep tapping National's wound to keep it open and bleeding right through to the election.

    Dr Clarke would not have had the guile to maximise the political damage to National.

  59. Judy Ann Blakey 59

    Who sent Michelle Boag this information to her private email? And why?

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    Buzz from the Beehive Hard on the heels of three rurally oriented ministers launching the first of their woolshed meetings, the government brought good news to farmers on the environmental front. First, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced an additional $18 million is being committed to reduce agricultural emissions. Not all ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    3 days ago
  • Climate change violates human rights
    That's the ruling of the European Court of Human Rights today: Weak government climate policies violate fundamental human rights, the European court of human rights has ruled. In a landmark decision on one of three major climate cases, the first such rulings by an international court, the ECHR raised ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Which govt departments have grown the most?
    David Farrar writes –  There has been a 34% increase over six years in the size of the public service, in terms of EFTS. But not all agencies have grown by the same proportion. Here are the 10 with the largest relative increases between 2017 and ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • What’s to blame for the public’s plummeting trust in the media?
    Bryce Edwards writes  –  The media is in crisis, as New Zealand audiences flee from traditional sources of news and information. The latest survey results on the public’s attitude to the media shows plummeting trust. And New Zealand now leads the world in terms of those who want ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    3 days ago
  • Something Important: The Curious Death of the School Strike 4 Climate Movement.
    The Hope That Failed: The Christchurch Mosque Massacres, Covid-19, deep political disillusionment, and the jealous cruelty of the intersectionists: all had a part to play in causing School Strike 4 Climate’s bright bubble of hope and passion to burst. But, while it floated above us, it was something that mattered. Something ...
    4 days ago
  • Cow Farts and Cancer Sticks.
    What do you do if you’re a new government minister and the science is in. All of the evidence and facts are clear, but they’re not to your liking? They’re inconsistent with your policy positions and/or your spending priorities.Well, first off you could just stand back and watch as the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's day. First up is James Shaw's New Zealand Bill of Rights (Right to Sustainable Environment) Amendment Bill, which does exactly what it says on the label. Despite solid backing in international law and from lawyers and NGOs, National will likely vote it down out of pure ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Bernard's Top 10 'pick 'n' mix' at 10:10 am on Wednesday, April 10
    Luxon in 2021 as a new MP, before his rise to PM and subsequent plummeting popularity. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Here’s the 10 things that stood out for me from me reading over the last day, as at 10:10 am on Wednesday, April 10:Must read: Tova O’Brien describes ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • What’s happening with Airport to Botany
    One of the few public transport projects the current government have said they support is the Airport to Botany project (A2B) and it’s one we haven’t covered in a while so worth looking at where things are at. A business case for the project was completed in 2021 before being ...
    4 days ago
  • Bishop more popular than Luxon in Curia poll
    Count the Chrises: Chris Bishop (2nd from right) is moving up in the popularity polls. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: These six things stood out to me over the last day in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy, as of 7:06 am on Wednesday, April 10:The National/ACT/NZ First coalition Government’s opinion poll ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Silmarillion Fan Poetry: A Collection (2022-2024)
    It’s been some time since I properly exercised my poetic muscles. Prose-writing has been where it’s at for me, these past few years. Well, to get back into practice, I thought I’d write the occasional bit of jocular fan poetry, based off Tolkien’s Silmarillion… with this post being a collection ...
    4 days ago
  • At a glance – The Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) is not causing global warming
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    4 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: What’s to blame for the public’s plummeting trust in the media?
    The media is in crisis, as New Zealand audiences flee from traditional sources of news and information. The latest survey results on the public’s attitude to the media shows plummeting trust. And New Zealand now leads the world in terms of those who want to “avoid the news”. But who ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    4 days ago
  • Dead on target
    My targets for today are: 1 newsletter sent out by 4.30pm 800 words of copy delivered to a client by COB, as we say in the world of BAU1 dinner served by sunset GST returnSo far so good. Longer-term targets are: Get some website copy finished before I get on a plane on Saturday ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • The PM sets nine policy targets- and in case you missed the truancy one, Seymour has provided some...
    Buzz from the Beehive Targets and travel were a theme in the latest flow of ministerial announcements. The PM announced a raft of targets (“nine ambitious Government Targets to help improve the lives of New Zealanders”) along with plans to head for Singapore, Thailand, and Philippines. His Deputy and Foreign ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Unwelcome advice
    Yesterday He Pou a Rangi Climate Change Commission released two key pieces of advice, on the 2036-40 emissions budget and the 2050 target. Both are statutorily required as part of the Zero Carbon Act budgeting / planning process, and both have a round of public consultation before being finalised and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • In a structural deficit, the only real tax cut is a spending cut
    Eric Crampton writes –  This week’s column in the Stuff papers. A snippet: Tabarrok warned that America had two political parties – “the Tax and Spenders and the No-Tax and Spenders” – and neither was fiscally conservative. In the two decades after Tabarrok’s warning, the federal government ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • A Return to Kindness?
    New Zealanders are a pretty fair minded bunch. By and large we like to give people a go.Ian Foster, for example, had a terrible record as a head rugby coach. Like not even good, and did we let that bother us? Yeah, but also Nah. Because we went ahead and ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Aukus or not, New Zealand’s foreign policy is being remade
    Geoffrey Miller writes –  This could be a watershed week for New Zealand’s international relations. Winston Peters, the foreign minister, is heading to Washington DC for a full week of meetings. The surprisingly lengthy trip just happens to coincide with a major trilateral summit of leaders from the United States, ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    5 days ago
  • Back to the future, with a 2032 deadline
    Aiming to look visionary and focused, Luxon has announced nine targets to improve measures for education, health, crime and climate emissions - but the reality is only one target is well above pre-Covid levels. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The six news items of note for me in Aotearoa-NZ’s ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Why Rod Carr is optimistic farmers can beat climate change
    The future of farming went on the line yesterday when the Climate Change Commission presented its first review of New Zealand’s target of net zero emissions by 2050. The Commission said New Zealand’s target was unlikely to be consistent with the 2015 Paris Agreement goal of holding temperature rise to ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Grifters, Bigots & Booling With the Dawgs
    Hi,I hope you had a good weekend. I was mostly in bed with the worst flu of my life.Today I’m emerging on the other side — and looking forward to what I can catch of the total solar eclipse rippling across parts of America today.Whilst hacking through a cough, I’ve ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Goldsmith spots a cost-saver in his Justice domain – let’s further erode our right (under Magna ...
    Bob Edlin writes – Chapter 39 of the Magna Carta (from memory) includes the guarantee that no free man may suffer punishment without “the lawful judgment of his peers.” This was a measure which the barons forced on England’s King John to delegate part of his judicial authority ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Climate Adam: Is Global Warming Speeding Up?
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Thanks to climate change, 2023 has shattered heat records, and 2024 is continuing where last year left off. With this devastating ...
    5 days ago
  • Brooke is on the TV, being a Minister!
    Brooke is on the TV, being a Minister! She is going to talk to Jack on the TV!It's hard to watch Jack on the TV without thinking to yourself:How can anyone be that good-looking,and also be even brainier than they are good-looking?Talk about lucky!But also, Jack works for the TV news. So ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • There’s gold – or rather, energy without carbon – in that rock, but Jones reminds us of the Tr...
    Buzz from the Beehive Oh, dear.  One News tells us an ownership spat is brewing between Māori and the Crown as New Zealand uses more renewable energy sources. No, not water or the shoreline.  Ownership of another resource has come into the reckoning. The One News report explained that 99% of ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Bad faith from National
    One of the weird features of the Zero Carbon Act was its split-gas targets, which separated methane, produced overwhelmingly by farmers, from carbon dioxide produced by the rest of us. This lower target for methane was another effective subsidy to the dairy industry, and was the result of a compromise ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Israel’s murderous use of AI in Gaza
    This may seem like a dumb question– but how come Israel has managed to kill at least 33,000 Palestinian civilians in Gaza, including over 13,000 children? Of course, saturation aerial bombing and artillery shelling of densely populated civilian neighbourhoods will do that. So will the targeting of children by IDF ...
    Gordon CampbellBy ScoopEditor
    5 days ago
  • Total Eclipse of the Mind.
    All that you touch And all that you seeAll that you taste All you feelAnd all that you love And all that you hateAll you distrust All you saveEarly tomorrow morning as the sun is rising in Aotearoa many people across North America, from Mexico to Canada, will be losing ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • So why do that degree… here?
    A report – and discussion – from the university front line… Mike Grimshaw writes – I have been involved in numerous curriculum and degree reviews over the decades and in all of them the question always skirted around is: “If you had to leave now with ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • The hunt is on for an asterix for farm emissions
    The Government is setting up its own experts group to review the goalposts for farmers to reduce methane emissions. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The six news items of note for me in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy as of 9:06 am on Monday, April 8 are:The Government is setting up ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: Aukus or not, New Zealand’s foreign policy is being remade
    This could be a watershed week for New Zealand’s international relations. Winston Peters, the foreign minister, is heading to Washington DC for a full week of meetings. The surprisingly lengthy trip just happens to coincide with a major trilateral summit of leaders from the United States, Japan and the Philippines. ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    6 days ago
  • The Kaka’s diary for the week to April 15 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to April 15 include:PM Christopher Luxon is scheduled to hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4 pm today. The Climate Commission will publish advice to the Government this evening.Parliament is sitting from Question Time at 2pm ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #14
    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, March 31, 2024 thru Sat, April 6, 2024. Story of the week Proxy measurement via Facebook "engagement" suggests a widely welcoming audience for Prof. Andrew Dessler's The Climate ...
    6 days ago
  • Their Money or Your Life.
    Brooke van Velden appeared this morning on Q&A, presumably paying homage to Margaret Thatcher. The robotic one had come in an 80s pink, shoulder-padded jacket, much favoured by the likes of Thatcher or Hosking. She also brought the spirit of Margaret, seemingly occupying her previously vacant soul compartment.Jack asked for ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Truth pulls its boots on
    It's a lot easier to pull off a lie if people don't know much about what you're lying about.Sometimes, watching Christopher Luxon, you get the impression he doesn't know all that much about it, either.​​ That's the charitable interpretation. The other is that he knows full well.He was on the ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago

  • Huge interest in Government’s infrastructure plans
    Hundreds of people in little over a week have turned out in Northland to hear Regional Development Minister Shane Jones speak about plans for boosting the regional economy through infrastructure. About 200 people from the infrastructure and associated sectors attended an event headlined by Mr Jones in Whangarei today. Last ...
    1 day ago
  • Health Minister thanks outgoing Health New Zealand Chair
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti has today thanked outgoing Health New Zealand – Te Whatu Ora Chair Dame Karen Poutasi for her service on the Board.   “Dame Karen tendered her resignation as Chair and as a member of the Board today,” says Dr Reti.  “I have asked her to ...
    1 day ago
  • Roads of National Significance planning underway
    The NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has signalled their proposed delivery approach for the Government’s 15 Roads of National Significance (RoNS), with the release of the State Highway Investment Proposal (SHIP) today, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Boosting economic growth and productivity is a key part of the Government’s plan to ...
    2 days ago
  • Navigating an unstable global environment
    New Zealand is renewing its connections with a world facing urgent challenges by pursuing an active, energetic foreign policy, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Our country faces the most unstable global environment in decades,” Mr Peters says at the conclusion of two weeks of engagements in Egypt, Europe and the United States.    “We cannot afford to sit back in splendid ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ welcomes Australian Governor-General
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced the Australian Governor-General, His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley and his wife Her Excellency Mrs Linda Hurley, will make a State visit to New Zealand from Tuesday 16 April to Thursday 18 April. The visit reciprocates the State visit of former Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy ...
    2 days ago
  • Pseudoephedrine back on shelves for Winter
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour has announced that Medsafe has approved 11 cold and flu medicines containing pseudoephedrine. Pharmaceutical suppliers have indicated they may be able to supply the first products in June. “This is much earlier than the original expectation of medicines being available by 2025. The Government recognised ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ and the US: an ever closer partnership
    New Zealand and the United States have recommitted to their strategic partnership in Washington DC today, pledging to work ever more closely together in support of shared values and interests, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “The strategic environment that New Zealand and the United States face is considerably more ...
    2 days ago
  • Joint US and NZ declaration
    April 11, 2024 Joint Declaration by United States Secretary of State the Honorable Antony J. Blinken and New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs the Right Honourable Winston Peters We met today in Washington, D.C. to recommit to the historic partnership between our two countries and the principles that underpin it—rule ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ and US to undertake further practical Pacific cooperation
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further New Zealand cooperation with the United States in the Pacific Islands region through $16.4 million in funding for initiatives in digital connectivity and oceans and fisheries research.   “New Zealand can achieve more in the Pacific if we work together more urgently and ...
    2 days ago
  • Government redress for Te Korowai o Wainuiārua
    The Government is continuing the bipartisan effort to restore its relationship with iwi as the Te Korowai o Wainuiārua Claims Settlement Bill passed its first reading in Parliament today, says Treaty Negotiations Minister Paul Goldsmith. “Historical grievances of Te Korowai o Wainuiārua relate to 19th century warfare, land purchased or taken ...
    2 days ago
  • Focus on outstanding minerals permit applications
    New Zealand Petroleum and Minerals is working to resolve almost 150 outstanding minerals permit applications by the end of the financial year, enabling valuable mining activity and signalling to the sector that New Zealand is open for business, Resources Minister Shane Jones says.  “While there are no set timeframes for ...
    2 days ago
  • Applications open for NZ-Ireland Research Call
    The New Zealand and Irish governments have today announced that applications for the 2024 New Zealand-Ireland Joint Research Call on Agriculture and Climate Change are now open. This is the third research call in the three-year Joint Research Initiative pilot launched in 2022 by the Ministry for Primary Industries and Ireland’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Tenancy rules changes to improve rental market
    The coalition Government has today announced changes to the Residential Tenancies Act to encourage landlords back to the rental property market, says Housing Minister Chris Bishop. “The previous Government waged a war on landlords. Many landlords told us this caused them to exit the rental market altogether. It caused worse ...
    3 days ago
  • Boosting NZ’s trade and agricultural relationship with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay will visit China next week, to strengthen relationships, support Kiwi exporters and promote New Zealand businesses on the world stage. “China is one of New Zealand’s most significant trade and economic relationships and remains an important destination for New Zealand’s products, accounting for nearly 22 per cent of our good and ...
    3 days ago
  • Freshwater farm plan systems to be improved
    The coalition Government intends to improve freshwater farm plans so that they are more cost-effective and practical for farmers, Associate Environment Minister Andrew Hoggard and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay have announced. “A fit-for-purpose freshwater farm plan system will enable farmers and growers to find the right solutions for their farm ...
    4 days ago
  • New Fast Track Projects advisory group named
    The coalition Government has today announced the expert advisory group who will provide independent recommendations to Ministers on projects to be included in the Fast Track Approvals Bill, say RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop and Regional Development Minister Shane Jones. “Our Fast Track Approval process will make it easier and ...
    4 days ago
  • Pacific and Gaza focus of UN talks
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters says his official talks with the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in New York today focused on a shared commitment to partnering with the Pacific Islands region and a common concern about the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza.    “Small states in the Pacific rely on collective ...
    4 days ago
  • Government honours Taranaki Maunga deal
    The Government is honouring commitments made to Taranaki iwi with the Te Pire Whakatupua mō Te Kāhui Tupua/Taranaki Maunga Collective Redress Bill passing its first reading Parliament today, Treaty Negotiations Minister Paul Goldsmith says. “This Bill addresses the commitment the Crown made to the eight iwi of Taranaki to negotiate ...
    4 days ago
  • Enhanced partnership to reduce agricultural emissions
    The Government and four further companies are together committing an additional $18 million towards AgriZeroNZ to boost New Zealand’s efforts to reduce agricultural emissions. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says the strength of the New Zealand economy relies on us getting effective and affordable emission reduction solutions for New Zealand. “The ...
    4 days ago
  • 110km/h limit proposed for Kāpiti Expressway
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) will begin consultation this month on raising speed limits for the Kāpiti Expressway to 110km/h. “Boosting economic growth and productivity is a key part of the Government’s plan to rebuild the economy and this proposal supports that outcome ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand Biosecurity Awards – Winners announced
    Two New Zealanders who’ve used their unique skills to help fight the exotic caulerpa seaweed are this year’s Biosecurity Awards Supreme Winners, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard. “Strong biosecurity is vital and underpins the whole New Zealand economy and our native flora and fauna. These awards celebrate all those in ...
    5 days ago
  • Attendance action plan to lift student attendance rates
    The Government is taking action to address the truancy crisis and raise attendance by delivering the attendance action plan, Associate Education Minister David Seymour announced today.   New Zealand attendance rates are low by national and international standards. Regular attendance, defined as being in school over 90 per cent of the ...
    5 days ago
  • World must act to halt Gaza catastrophe – Peters
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has told the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York today that an immediate ceasefire is needed in Gaza to halt the ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.    “Palestinian civilians continue to bear the brunt of Israel’s military actions,” Mr Peters said in his speech to a ...
    5 days ago
  • Speech to United Nations General Assembly: 66th plenary meeting, 78th session
    Mr President,   The situation in Gaza is an utter catastrophe.   New Zealand condemns Hamas for its heinous terrorist attacks on 7 October and since, including its barbaric violations of women and children. All of us here must demand that Hamas release all remaining hostages immediately.   At the ...
    5 days ago
  • Government woolshed roadshow kicks off
    Today the Government Agriculture Ministers started their national woolshed roadshow, kicking off in the Wairarapa. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay said it has been a tough time for farmers over the past few years. The sector has faced high domestic inflation rates, high interest rates, adverse weather events, and increasing farm ...
    5 days ago
  • PM heads to Singapore, Thailand, and Philippines
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon will travel to Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines this week (April 14-20), along with a senior business delegation, signalling the Government’s commitment to deepen New Zealand’s international engagement, especially our relationships in South East Asia. “South East Asia is a region that is more crucial than ever to ...
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister launches Government Targets
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced further steps to get New Zealand back on track, launching nine ambitious Government Targets to help improve the lives of New Zealanders. “Our Government has a plan that is focused on three key promises we made to New Zealanders – to rebuild the economy, ...
    5 days ago
  • Natural hydrogen resource should be free of Treaty claims entanglement
    Natural hydrogen could be a game-changing new source of energy for New Zealand but it is essential it is treated as a critical development that benefits all New Zealanders, Resources Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones is seeking to give regulatory certainty for those keen to develop natural, or geological, ...
    6 days ago
  • Government responds to unsustainable net migration
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand on stage at global Space Symposium
    Space Minister Judith Collins will speak at the Space Symposium in the United States next week, promoting New Zealand’s rapidly growing place in the sector as we work to rebuild the economy. “As one of the largest global space events, attended by more than 10,000 business and government representatives from ...
    7 days ago
  • $4.9m project completed with marae reopening
    A significant marae has reopened in the heart of Rotorua marking the end of renovations for the Ruatāhuna Marae Renovation Cluster, a project that provided much-needed jobs and regional economic stimulus, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones was at the official reopening of Mātaatua ki Rotorua Marae today. ...
    1 week ago
  • Pure Tūroa Limited to operate Tūroa ski field
    Ko Tahuarangi te waka – Tahuarangi is the ancestral vessel Ko Rangitukutuku te aho – Rangitukutuku is the fishing line Ko Pikimairawea te matau – Pikimairawea is the hook Ko Hāhā te Whenua te ika kei rō-wai – Hāhā te whenua is the fish (of Māui) whilst under the ocean ...
    1 week ago
  • Methane targets to be independently reviewed
    Rebuilding New Zealand’s economy will rely on the valuable agricultural sector working sustainably towards our climate change goals.  Today, the Climate Change and Agriculture Ministers announced that an independent panel of experts will review agricultural biogenic methane science and targets for consistency with no additional warming. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ and Nordics: likeminded partners
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has highlighted the strong ties that bind New Zealand and the Nordic countries of Northern Europe during a trip to Sweden today.    “There are few countries in the world more likeminded with New Zealand than our friends in Northern Europe,” Mr Peters says.    “We ...
    1 week ago
  • First New Zealand C-130J Hercules takes flight
    The first New Zealand C-130J Hercules to come off the production line in the United States has successfully completed its first test flights, Defence Minister Judith Collins announced today. “These successful flights are a significant milestone for the New Zealand Defence Force, bringing this once-in-a-generation renewal of a critical airlift ...
    1 week ago
  • Government to rephase NCEA Change Programme
      The coalition Government is making significant changes to the NCEA Change Programme, delaying the implementation by two years, Minister of Education Erica Stanford announced today. “Ensuring New Zealand’s curriculum is world leading is a vital part of the Government’s plan to deliver better public services and ensure all students ...
    1 week ago
  • New Ngāpuhi investment fund Chair appointed
    Ben Dalton has been appointed the new board Chair of Tupu Tonu, the Ngāpuhi Investment Fund, says Treaty Negotiations Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Finance Minister Shane Jones. “Ben brings a wealth of experience in governance and economic development to the position. He will have a strong focus on ensuring ...
    1 week ago
  • Education should be prioritised ahead of protesting
    Students should be in school and learning instead of protesting during school hours, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “If students feel strongly about sending a message, they could have marched on Tuesday when there was a nationwide teacher only day, or during the upcoming school holidays. It has become ...
    1 week ago
  • Delivering on Local Water Done Well
    Cabinet has agreed on key steps to implement Local Water Done Well, the Coalition Government’s plan for financially sustainable locally delivered water infrastructure and services, Local Government Minister Simeon Brown says.  "Councils and voters resoundingly rejected Labour’s expensive and bureaucratic Three Waters regime, and earlier this year the Coalition Government ...
    1 week ago
  • Peters to visit New York, Washington D.C.
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will engage with high-level United States Government and United Nations officials in the United States next week (6-12 April).    The visit, with programmes in New York and Washington D.C., will focus on major global and regional security challenges and includes meetings with US Secretary of ...
    1 week ago

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