Convoy protest 16/2/22

Written By: - Date published: 6:05 am, February 16th, 2022 - 273 comments
Categories: covid-19 - Tags: , , ,

Today’s media:

@Te_Taipo (Te Ranigikaiwhiria Kemara twitter, and today’s thread)


Public servants are reviewing the traffic light system to see if it is fit for purpose as New Zealand battles Omicron. The review will look at the future of the vaccine passes.

The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC), which manages a large part of the Covid response, told the Governance and Administration select committee on Wednesday morning that the system would now be reviewed. It is not clear whether the review is a wholesale review of the efficacy of the framework, or low-level tweaking.

“We are constantly reviewing and advising as things change,” she said.

Barnes said the report would go back to ministers “in the next month or two”.

Covid-19 Omicron outbreak: Government reviewing traffic light system

Update on Police plan to remove vehicles, NZH


Yesterday’s media:

NZ Police statement and livestream from last night, about the intention to start removing vehicles blocking roads, and signalling they don’t want to escalate tensions (NZH)

Tame Iti/Freedom Protest (Waatea News audio)

@Te_Taipo (Te Ranigikaiwhiria Kemara twitter, and yesterday’s thread)

Parliament protests: Tragedy or farce? (Nick Bollinger on NZ counter culture, RNZ)

Parliament protest: Negotiation expert pushes for mediation (RNZ)

The occupation of NZ’s parliament grounds is a tactical challenge for police, but mass arrests are not an option ( Lecturer in Criminology, Monash University, The Conversation)

Video of yesterday’s speech from the woman who was arrested last week while naked. (Bryce Edward twitter)

List of reasons for Convoy 2022 NZ (NZ Truckies FB)

Letter of Demand (from protest organisers)

Previous links:

Te Ao Māori News: ‘Just stoking the fire’ – Waititi tells Speaker to end tactics at parliament protest

Stuff: Law experts: Police taking a ‘light-handed’ approach to protesters

Stuff: Police say ‘high probability’ protest could continue for days, weeks after roads cleared

The Spinoff: What is Trevor Mallard playing at?

Newsroom: ‘Splintered realities’: How NZ convoy lost its way

Stuff: Inside the disorienting, contradictory swirl of the convoy, as seen through its media mouthpiece,


273 comments on “Convoy protest 16/2/22 ”

  1. Jenny how to get there 1

    'End All Mandates'

    An anti-mandate protest sign on the forecourt of parliament read in capital letters, "END ALL MANDATES". All Mandates?

    Taken literally, society would literally fall apart if we removed all mandates.

    Taken literally these protesters do seem to be against parking mandates, literally.

    But I think the rest of us can agree that we need mandated road rules and parking restrictions, otherwise we could drive on any side of the road we liked, at any speed we liked, and if we survived the journey, park anywhere we liked.

    The anti-mandate protesters should never have been allowed the freedumb to park their vehicles wherever they liked.

    Clear the roads! Tow their cars!

    If these anti-mandate protesters try to obstruct this operation arrest them. Any resulting mayhem and even violence in the Streets of Wellington away from their protest at parliament is on them. I expect the authorities to come down hard on any anti-mandate protesters who dare fight the legal removal of their illegally parked vehicles.

    The vehicle blockade that is preventing local businesses from operating and preventing the people of Wellington freedom of movement in their own city must be removed.

    Let them stay.

    The protesters on the forecourt of parliament are a different matter, let them be, let them make their point, parliament is still operating, the protesters are (for the most part) behaving peacefully. We need to maintain that peace. A violent confrontation is what the extremists among them want.

    • Ross 1.1

      No one has made a coherent argument for vaccine mandates. And when the majority of new Covid cases have been fully vaccinated, it’s easy to understand why. But won’t someone at least have a stab at an argument?

      The protesters may or may not be a rabble, but their abhorrence of lockdowns, mandates and passes is right on the money. Which proves the old adage that even a stopped clock is right twice a day lol

      • Tony Veitch (not etc.) 1.1.1

        No one has made a coherent argument for vaccine mandates which satisfies my closed mind.


        For the umpteenth time – being vaccinated helps protect against severe cases of covid.


        • Ross

          being vaccinated helps protect against severe cases of covid

          If you say so. Of course, Panadol helps to relieve pain. Should we fire someone from their job if they don’t wish to take Panadol? Seems like a proportionate response.

          We have a flu vaccine which people have access to each year. It is optional. Many health professionals choose to take the vaccine. Many others don’t. Those that take the vaccine are not coerced into doing so.

          You have not made the case for vaccine mandates.

          • Blazer

            'Panadol helps to relieve pain. Should we fire someone from their job if they don’t wish to take Panadol'

            Are you serious!….unbelievable comparison.

            • Ross

              You are right, Blazer. It is unbelievable that someone can be sacked for not taking a vaccine. They would never be sacked for not taking Panadol or any other medication or drug. Unbelievable is very apt. (But I do recommend Panadaol for those in pain. 🙂 )

          • Jenny how to get there

            Ross, I think you need to take a panadol now.

          • Tricledrown

            Looking at the conservative govt of ScoMo to open up at all Cost's.

            Thousands dying unnecessarily.

            Supply chains disrupted.

            Hospitals over run.

            Nurses on Strike in NSW in the middle of a pandemic.

            2 x + booster reduces your chances of dying or hospitalisation by 15 times.

        • Chris T

          “For the umpteenth time – being vaccinated helps protect against severe cases of covid.”

          What does this have to do with justifying Covid mandates?


      • Ross 1.1.2

        <em>I think the rest of us can agree that we need mandated road rules and parking restrictions.</em>

        You are spot on. But such rules are justified. Vaccine mandates aren’t. They are unnecessary and destructive. And if we park illegally, we’ll get a small fine. We won’t lose our job or our career. Spot the difference?

        • tsmithfield

          I agree with you Ross. There is no longer a case for vaccine mandates.

          I am double vaxxed and boosted. But I completely disagree with mandates continuing as there is very little point anymore.

          Since the vast majority of the community are now vaccinated, most of those spreading the virus and taking up hospital beds now will be vaccinated people.

          If the unvaccinated get sicker, then that is on them and their own personal choices. But since the vast majority (I heard on the radio up to 98% in some of the main centres) then the small number of unvaxxed who end up in hospital wards will make very little difference to the overall hospital load.

          • observer

            No, you don't agree. You say "there is no longer a case for vaccine mandates".

            That's based on practical considerations, as you outlined in your comment. It's debatable, of course. And the debate will continue, as Omicron develops.

            But Ross and the Absolutists say there never was a case for vaccine mandates.

            Anywhere, any time. That's a very different – and deluded – position.

            • tsmithfield

              I guess we both agree to the extent that we are looking forwards rather than backwards.

              But I did think the case for people losing their jobs was dodgy at best. According to clause 11 of the Bill of Rights everyone has the right to refuse a medical treatment.


              I have heard the argument that people still have the right to refuse, but consequences come with choices, and one of those consequences could be job loss.

              However, that argument doesn't wash with me. If the choice was take the vaccine or be shot dead, then the same argument could be made: A consequence of free choice for not being vaccinated would be getting shot dead.

              The comparisons are only a matter of degree rather than principle. Losing one's job for a medical choice may not be on the same level as getting shot. But it is certainly right up there in terms of severe consequences.

              • Molly

                I was having this discussion with someone yesterday.

                My question was:

                When the government designed and implemented (very well) the vaccination programme, surely they had a series of choices in regards to the level of population vaccinated?

                She said that she believed the goal to be 90%, which we achieved and more with around 95% of the adult population being double vaxxed. (I don't know if this was a government goal or the Herald's TBH).

                My next question was:

                At what percentage would the modelled benefits of vaccinating the remaining percentage, be outweighed by the real harms to mental wellbeing, the financial costs to some, and the other costs of running a two-tier vaccinated passports system?

                You would think that 95% vaccinated would be sufficient surely?

                There are people unable to be vaccinated, people unable to get exemptions and those choosing not to get vaccinated. There are real harms being felt by these people, and being ignored when pointed out. The government has failed to put in support mechanisms for those that are unable to have vaccines but who lose income because of mandates. We can look at the big picture, while also dealing with the consequences of using broad strokes.

                At what point is this number small enough to start looking at some of the current strategies and think, it's time to let go?

                • gsays

                  It's heartening that those conversations can still take pace, Molly. A fair deal of mutual respect, careful wording and not necessarily feeling you have to win are key.

                  A LOT harder in the digital, text sphere.

                  "At what percentage would the modelled benefits of vaccinating the remaining percentage, be outweighed by the real harms to mental wellbeing, the financial costs to some, and the other costs of running a two-tier vaccinated passports system?"

                  This is the crux. Too many staunch advocates of boosters, in ever increasing frequency don't seem to take this into account. They are happy with the deaths/hospitalisations metric. A metric that so far seems to have a large majority of very elderly, chronically ill and vulnerable in it's tally.

                  Even the staunchest fan of the Pfizer drug must be asking questions about the efficacy. It started as a two dose regime, then a 6/4/3 monthly booster, now talk of changing the recipe to chase the latest variant.

                  Booster is right, primarily a boost to Pfizer's coffers.

                  Edit: “At what point is this number small enough to start looking at some of the current strategies and think, it’s time to let go?”
                  This is what I have been asking and all I get is emotive and vague responses. I would have thought there would have been an outline of what the situation looked like for these draconian measures to be ‘walked back’.

                  • Molly

                    Well, a pertinent consideration is also:

                    If infection rates of 95% vaccinated + 5% of unvaccinated people are enough to overwhelm the medical capacity, then our medical capacity must be appalling.

                    Vaccinated people are more likely to be asymptomatic, and remain in the wider public sphere shedding the virus especially if they are untested.

                    There is a lot of accepted perspectives that inhibit further exploration of impacts.

                    • mpledger

                      5% of the NZ pop is 250,000 – that would certainly overwhelm the NZ hospital system – it would overwhelm most hospital systems. The only system that could cope is probably the USA system which has huge levels of redundancy but at an incredible cost that means large numbers of people can't afford health care.

                      Having redundancy costs a lot of money.

                    • Molly

                      5% of the population is indeed, 250,000.

                      But how many of that 250,000 are the age demographic of concern?

                      Probably less than half of that, so let's say around 120,000.

                      Of that component, how many will contract Covid and require hospitalisation?

                      Unfortunately, the interval is not yet great enough for reliable robust data on Omicron, but we can see some preliminary results:

                      Hospitalization rate 23 times higher for unvaccinated vs. boosted during omicron – dated Feb 1, 2022

                      In this case, unvaccinated includes those that have received a double dose, but not the booster.

                      Out of 422,966 COVID-19 cases among those aged 18 years and older, 33.6% occurred in unvaccinated people, 13.3% in people who were vaccinated with a booster dose, and 53.2% in those who were vaccinated but did not receive a booster dose.

                      Unvaccinated people had higher rates of hospitalization (2.8%), ICU admission (0.5%) and mechanical ventilation (0.2%) compared with vaccinated people with a booster (0.7%, 0.08% and 0.03%, respectively), the authors reported.

                      Deaths were also most common among the unvaccinated (0.3%) compared with those vaccinated with a booster (0.07%) and those vaccinated without a booster (0.08%).

                      I understand this is all really a numbers game.

                      I also understand that when considering that, we should have made provision for those unable, or unwilling to get the vaccine.

                      For those unable, who have lost income, there is no support from the NZ government. Why not? Surely this cost could have been borne for as long as the mandates continued.

                      This will not be the last pandemic we see. We can learn and improve our response plan, but only if we look to see where we can do better.

                    • mpledger

                      So you want to pay people to not work and not have the vaccine. Strange incentives.

                    • joe90

                      So you want to pay people to not work and not have the vaccine.

                      Anti-vaxx clown I know has been directed to work from home while her severance is worked through. Her most recent straight-faced brain fart is that if she is rapid tested daily, at her employers cost of course, she can't be given the arse.

          • Patricia Bremner

            Mandates will end in time, just as MIQ is beginning to. The Government is using every tool to try to slow spread, sadly some see that as a loss of personal freedom, which it is, but the reason is not control, it is about our health system and health workers.

            I have noted people expect the Government to do two things which are opposites Give us safety /Give us freedom.

            The denial of covid is scary. The attitude of "We are outside of community" is sad. When people can not express clearly their position, but constantly put others at risk, then we lose patience and any care for their beliefs. That is sad as well.

            I listened to some voices and the messages are mainly a muddle of things off FB. The threats are another thing again. Threating to kill is illegal. Blocking roads is illegal. Stealing community and club stuff is illegal. So an end has to occur. If Police are unable to do their job because they do not have the tools they should be able to requisition the equipment from those "towies."

            Law is law. Democracy is the will of the majority with room for alternate views, but not for continued disruption and threats. Mandates are part of a process which will end in time.

          • Tricledrown

            Tsm. So your a DIY health professional.Unvaccinated if you include 1 dose take up 65% plus of beds.(around 10% of the population)

            Those who are double dosed about 20%(95%of the population) and boosted take up only 5% (60%of the population)of beds.

            Those are NZ moh stats.

            Then Those who are unvaccinated take longer to recover and require more care.

            Tsm you don't get it.

            Until the surge of omricon slows to a level our underfunded under staffed over worked health system needs the community to take precautious measures to prevent what's happened in let it rip countries and states.

            To replace those healthcare workers would take a decade plus some time.For our health system to get back to pre covid.

            The more damage țhe longer it will take to rebuild given every major country will be chasing critical doctors and nurses many with deeper pockets and cheaper housing.

        • Ad

          If your car has a reputation for infecting thousands of people every time it parks, probably it just needs a clean.

          • tsmithfield

            If all the cars on the road have that reputation then we probably need to stop driving cars.

            • Ad


              If people were vaccinated like cars are regulated, the state would be requiring every single person operating it to have photo identification, 6-monthly health checkups, multiple layers of state obedience, be subject to decade-long shaming tv commercials, high prison sentences for infractions, and can only go out into the public inside a phalanx of laws …

              … and just for the act of parking you have further identification checks, 24/7 cameras and cost that spikes to $20 an hour.

              But still, vaccine mandates are like parking your car, somehow.

              • Tony Veitch (not etc.)

                Ha ha, reductio ad absurdum. Well done Ad.

              • tsmithfield

                Of course that logic would need to apply to any infectious disease. So, if that is what you are saying, then I guess, at least you are consistent.

                • Ad

                  So that would tell you that Ross's analogy doesn't work.:

                  And if we park illegally, we’ll get a small fine. We won’t lose our job or our career. Spot the difference?

                  We are a remarkably regulated society, and due to that we are highly functioning.

                  • tsmithfield

                    I guess you could say that Germany in the second world war was highly regulated and highly functioning (for a lot of the war anyway). But that didn't make them right.

                    As I explained below, I think the practical considerations outweighed the human rights considerations in terms of mandates when vaccination rates were low.

                    Hence, on balance, I thought the mandate was justified in the first instance, even though I thought there was a good human rights argument against mandates.

                    But now, I think the balance has swung the other way. Hence, I don't think mandates are justified anymore.

                    • Ad

                      We don't live in Nazi Germany.

                      We live in New Zealand.

                      COVID mandates are not the same as car park regulations.

                      The COVID regulations assisted in greatly decreasing the speed and scale of infection.

                      They will continue to do so.

                      The PM warned us that there are more variations to come.

                      Over 96% of New Zealand is operating with the COVID mandates. Those who don't want to are getting free food delivered, all the media opportunity to explain their position, camped out on the parliamentary lawn.

                      If you still believe the mandates are unjustified, why don't you join them?

                    • weka

                      tsmithfield, if the mandates were removed now, would you support them being used again the future if another variant warrants that?

                  • gsays

                    "We are a remarkably regulated society, and due to that we are highly functioning."

                    I disagree. The less reasonable a society the more regulations it needs.

                    Or "It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society."

                    Jiddu Krishnamurti

                    • tsmithfield

                      "tsmithfield, if the mandates were removed now, would you support them being used again the future if another variant warrants that?''

                      Perhaps, but for me that bar would need to be very high.

                      If another variant were to come out that was not a major health threat due to our high vaccination rate, and probable previous infection with Omicron, then I definitely would not support it.

                      If a variation came out that was highly dangerous to the population despite those factors, and there was an effective vaccine available against that, then I probably would.

            • Tricledrown

              Tsm your car is in a rabbit hole take 2 Panadol some ivermectin and put your disastrous false equivalency into reverse.

      • Psycho Milt 1.1.3

        No one has made a coherent argument for vaccine mandates.

        That's simply untrue, which invites the conclusion that you've just rejected the arguments because you don't like them.

        • Ross


          Feel free to make the case. And, yes, I do have the option of dismissing lousy arguments. 🙂

    • Gosman 1.2

      You are trying to separate the behaviour on the Streets with the protesters in the Parliamentary precinct. That is not possible. If you wewre to crack down hard against the activity outside the people in would react.

      • Jenny how to get there 1.2.1

        In the quest for the moral high ground, those who are the first to react violently will be the ones to lose the public's support.

        You are right. I am trying to separate the illegal parking behaviour on the streets that is taking the freedom of local business to operate with the (mostly), peaceful protest on the parliamentary forecourt. And why not.

        It would be a great way to sort out the extremists from the rest.

        If we were to crack down on the illegal parking behaviour outside the parliamentary precinct and the people inside rushed out and started fighting with the police, that would be on them. They have been warned, they have been offered alternative free parking. Any resulting violence would be on them.

        If you or I parked illegally and were towed by the police and we reacted violently and attacked the police we would be jailed.

        I would expect no less in this case.

  2. observer 2

    Glenn McConnell has a useful overview of who the protesters at Parliament are:

    It's a very noticeable difference from other protests that there is no spokesperson/leader etc. Usually there is somebody who soon becomes a familiar name/face in the media (Pania Newton at Ihumatao, the Groundswell guys, John Minto at various protests, Ken Mair at Motua Gardens, etc).

    That makes sense because usually a protest wants to be represented well in the media, trying to win over public opinion, with an articulate spokesperson making the case for their cause. Influence government directly, or indirectly (via the voters). And it works.

    That's not happening here because this protest is "organic", apparently. And the media are seen as an enemy, not a platform.

    So this well-meaning talk of "engaging" misses the point. There don't appear to be any accessible leaders and spokespeople who the authorities can identify and reach out to (just ask the police, they've certainly been trying). There's really no point asking the government to engage when there's nobody to engage with.

    • observer 2.1

      And confirmed by Leighton Baker, of the far right New Conservatives (who didn't get any votes and so was not elected to Parliament):

      Leighton Baker, the former New Conservatives leader, was listed as the point of contact if politicians wished to open dialogue.

      Asked to comment on the demands of protest leaders, Baker said: “I’m not allowed to, I’m only an intermediary. I’m a conduit for the leaders”.

      “Unfortunately, there’s just a real lack of trust of the media and what you guys have been putting up, it’s just lies. Until you guys can actually be honest, nobody wants to talk to you. They only want to talk to people who tell the truth,” he said

      Asked for information about the leaders of the movement, Baker said: “There’s no one”.

      (my italics)

      • Ross 2.1.1

        there’s just a real lack of trust of the media

        And rightly so. The findings of the expert panel in Norway which I referred to the other day about deaths probably caused by the vaccine. Have you seen that reported by the media here? Me neither.

        And where are the daily Covid numbers being published by the media showing the majority of new cases are fully vaccinated? I haven’t seen those either. The media surely aren’t ignorant.

        So much for informed consent.

        • dv



          • Nic the NZer

            We all know this story is being suppressed by main stream media, even Norweigan main stream media, so we can't be supporting them by linking to their content.

            • dv

              WE ALL KNOW

              So how do we all know!!!

              • Ad

                Well obviously it's a vast conspiracy.

              • Nic the NZer

                As far as I investigated, an expert panel (equivalent to MoH experts in NZ) have concluded that a small number of vulnerable elderly people (maybe more than 10) were 'probably' (technical term) killed by 30,000 odd elderly being vaccinated. They have suggested not everybody who is vulnerable and has a short anticipated lifespan is going to benefit from vaccination.

                But if its another story you will have to ask somebody who isn't making fun of Ross to link to it.

          • gsays

            Link that was requested.

            I put 'Ross Norway' in TS search box, top right, above the comments list.


            • dv


              The review reported on 19 May and concluded that a causal link between the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and death was considered “likely” in 10 of the 100 cases, “possible” in 26 cases, and “unlikely” in 59 cases. The remaining five were deemed “unclassifiable.”

              Not very indefinite.

            • Nic the NZer

              I don't know if you should speak for Ross, but is this actually the news item he's saying is being suppressed?

              Because it seems to indicate that in May 2021 Norways officials are already considering the vaccine impacts on people who are so vulnerable that a vaccine might be fatal to them.

              It hardly seems surprising that there is little media appetite for such a nuanced subject which highlights officials being very careful to think about their policies impacts in an uncertain environment.

              • gsays

                I we surprised when I read the article.

                Were you?

                • Nic the NZer

                  Not really. I know Ross is prone to context free hyperbolation.

                  • gsays

                    "The review reported on 19 May and concluded that a causal link between the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and death was considered “likely” in 10 of the 100 cases, “possible” in 26 cases, and “unlikely” in 59 cases. The remaining five were deemed “unclassifiable.”1

                    Surprised the hell out of me and I am damn cynical.

        • Ad

          Death panels I knew it. Norway was occupied by Nazis.

        • Tricledrown

          Ross to be fully vaccinated against Omricon you need to have 2 doses plus a booster.

          The moh covid stats are freely available to all.

          Looking at those stats 65% of hospitalisations are still from unvaccinated and single dose people who make up 10% approx of the general public.

          Their stays in hospital are longer and more complex.

          In NSW they have more comprehensive stats including those who are boosted .

          In NSW only 5% of hospitalisations are from people with boosters yet they make up 50% of the population.

          The right wing take great pride in undermining this health initiative.

          Yet the McKinsey and Co report into how countries handled the Pandemic from an economic point of view shows clearly the countries who went hard and fast,those countries who put stricter controls on the population have had much better economic outcomes as well as health.

          McKinsey&Co rated NZ in the top 2 countries in the world.

      • Peter 2.1.2

        So Baker is ‘listed’ as a point of contact but can’t comment on the demands of protest leaders because he’s “not allowed to,” and he can’t give information about the leaders of the movement because “There’s no one”.

        “You can’t talk to one leader because there is none. It’s a whole group of people working together with a common goal.”

        The funniest thing is he says he’s a conduit for a nebulous group of leaders including most likely those from Freedom Alliance, Outdoors & Freedom Movement, The Freedom and Rights Coalition, and Voices for Freedom, and he doesn’t have the freedom to comment on demands.

        He reckons the media just puts up lies. The piece about him shows the media also puts up stuff about fantasylands.

        • McFlock

          He is merely a humble conduit to the masses. Or he's only a humble conduit to a few of the groups there. Or he's just a self-appointed humble conduit and will figure out to whom later.

  3. Jenny how to get there 3

    Martyn Bradbury over at the Daily blog makes some good points.

    …..Last week, this feral lunatic jamboree was dying off on Thursday morning and losing momentum right up until Trev threw a short man tantrum and called in the cops to clear the lawn. The resulting melee and 122 arrests created a common enemy and produced a 10 hour live stream recruitment video…..

    ……Omicron is coming.

    Once it hits this makeshift shit village it will cause enormous sickness and the place will fold in upon itself due to illness.

    Rather than using extreme Police force or military actions which will radicalise even more dispossessed and economically hurt people, allow the virus to do it all for you!

    We can get through this!

    Democracy is a messy, frustrating and infuriating process, but that’s what makes it so glorious!

    Bradbury's almost lyrical last sentence, is his best quote yet.

    • Ad 3.1

      "Rather than using extreme Police force or military actions which will radicalise even more dispossessed and economically hurt people, allow the virus to do it all for you!"

      Martyn Bradbury is an asshole.

      • fender 3.1.1

        I find Drabbury a bit of a dick too but you can label me an asshole as well if you like, because the other day I was thinking that these fools could be offered infection for serious consideration of their demands once they've had experience with the illness.

        • weka

          I'm not sure what you are saying exactly, but please do not go down the track of wishing people get covid.

      • Jenny how to get there 3.1.2

        Hi Ad, Do you really support using extreme Police actions to remove the anti-mandate protesters?.

        Is Martyn Bradbury really an 'asshole' for being against using extreme Police actions to remove the anti-mandate protesters?.

        • Ad

          As quoted, Bradbury is an asshole for wishing people to be infected by COVID.

          If you think the Police are being extreme with the protesters, you are a combination of isolated, ignorant, and hysterical.

          • Jenny how to get there


            16 February 2022 at 10:14 am

            As quoted, Bradbury is an asshole for wishing people to be infected by COVID.

            Wishing for people to be infected with Covid?

            I didn't read it that way.

            I have simplified the quote, to draw out Bradbury's meaning:

            "Omicron is coming.

            Once it hits this makeshift shit village it will cause enormous sickness and the place will fold in upon itself due to illness.

            "Rather than using extreme Police force or military actions……,

            ……allow the virus to do it all for you!" Martyn Bradbury

            I suppose you could read Martyn's quote and see his meaning twisted into him wishing these fools caught the virus, but they seem hell bent on doing that to themselves, which is what I took to be Martyn's meaning.

            In the same vein as Martyn Bradbury's comment;
            I wrote on another thread; Wouldn't it be better that these fools are all concentrated in one place where we can keep an eye on them, than moved on to spread covid in their communities.

            If you think you are capable of doing the mental gymnastics, necessary to twist the meaning of my words into me wishing the protesters came down with the virus, go for it. I can't wait to read it.

            "If you think the Police are being extreme with the protesters, you are a combination of isolated, ignorant, and hysterical." Ad

            I don't think the Police are being extreme with the protesters, and I have said so.

            But the Police would have to take extreme actions if the Police were to bow to Trevor Mallard's eviction demand.

            Correct me if I am wrong, Ad, but I am guessing here, that this is what you want to happen.

    • Sanctuary 3.2

      Bradbury is motivated by a bitter and envious hatred of "woke elites" – by which he means people who kicked him off RNZ (it was years ago, let it go Martyn) and more generally people are more successful than him by dint of intelligence, application and/or talent rather than any particular class analysis. He rails against identity politics while taking every opportunity to megaphone his particular prejudices with wearisome repetition of bumper-sticker slogans masquerading as analysis and his own simplistic solutions to complex problems.

      The thing is Bradbury has become a right wing populists whose left wing rhetoric is now merely a rhetorical device. A lot of fringe commentators like Bradbury and Trotter and Bryce Edwards dislike the current elites so much they'll make common cause with anti-elite Trumpist populism if it furthers their agenda. They really don't care if that anti-elite movement is left or right. And of course, as fringe merchants they all see a nice grift in a re-ordering of the elites with them at the centre of attention.

      • Blazer 3.2.1

        So you dislike Bradbury with a passion,but where do you stand regarding the 'elites'?

      • Jenny how to get there 3.2.2


        16 February 2022 at 8:48 am

        Bradbury is motivated by a bitter and envious hatred of "woke elites"…

        ….Bradbury has become a right wing populists whose left wing rhetoric is now merely a rhetorical device. A lot of fringe commentators like Bradbury and Trotter and Bryce Edwards dislike the current elites so much they'll make common cause with anti-elite Trumpist populism if it furthers their agenda.

        Hi Sanctuary, can you name any non-fringe commentators, who's commentary you think we should read for their take on these events?

        • Shanreagh

          This guy, below, has been referred to many times on here and the link to his twitter feed is included in the links in the narrative at the top of the page. He has been listening to the broadcasts from Counterspin, that broadcasts during the day to the protesters, looks at and analyses the protestors pages and provides commentary.

          If you are wanting some analysis of how 'hard done by' you won't get it there but you will get straight down the line on the ground narrative from which you can make up your own mind.

          Te Rangikaiwhiria Kemara

          • Jenny how to get there

            Who is he?

            And, where can I read his commentary?

            • Shanreagh

              Click on the link to him at the top of this page, in the narrative. There are clickable links. @ Te taipo

              He has ben around for ages and I have been following him for ages…….Twitter doesn't really cater for 'knowing' people by real name just by the quality of their posts.

              Protesters have now been urged to do a sit-in to disrupt buses.

            • weka

              today's thread from Te Taipo now linked in post.

      • Psycho Milt 3.2.3

        …rather than any particular class analysis.

        Given that he's tweeted today describing towing company owners as "working class," I think we can refine this to "rather than any kind of class analysis."

      • swordfish 3.2.4

        The increasingly Woke Sanc:

        with wearisome repetition of bumper-sticker slogans masquerading as analysis and his own simplistic solutions to complex problems.

        Oh, the irony ! … Sounds remarkably like the modus operandi of ID Politics dogmatists … eternally innocent & virtuous demographics vs eternally evil & immoral ones.

        Yeah, that's really understanding social & moral complexity ! Guaranteed to create horror stories for large numbers of innocent people … particularly through scapegoating (the affluent Woke, of course, always assiduously avoiding the suffering, while blaming the victims).

        Everyone outside their affluent elitist Cult moronically smeared as "Fascist" (shades of Rik, the affluent clueless Woke's Patron Saint) & as the bearers of all manner of "Phobias".

        Try & conjure up at least a modicum of self-awareness for chrissakes.

        [Note: Oh deary me, I’ve inadvertently employed the ‘W’ word again … Blasphemy !]

        • Nic the NZer

          I'm sure Martin loves an objective test of his beliefs. He just needs to convince everyone involved that towies are working class and therefore should not be subjected to constant threats and harassment. Then we can find out if they stand in solidarity with the protesters.

    • Gypsy 3.3

      I'm finding my self agreeing with MB more and more these days. I'm off to get help for it.smiley

  4. aj 4
    • Shaun Linehan is a protester who's been spending his days delivering donated food to the groups and protesting with them against the mandates. Politically, Shaun describes himself as a liberal with sympathy for the far-right.

    Karen Hay has a gentle interviewing style that draws her subject out to provide real insights. Last night she spent 20 minutes talking to a protester and it was worth the pain, listening to him explain how he got to where he got.

    I don't support them one jot, but I actually felt sympathy for him at a human level. I would be concerned for his state of mind, I think the kiwi expression is 'lost the plot' and it's sad.

    Hay probed as much as she could but the contradictions in his position, the cognitive dissonance, and his anger made him almost incoherent at times. It did nothing to lower my concern that if he is 'typical' of mind of most of them, then there is going to be violent actions from some deranged soul further down the track.

    • observer 4.1

      I haven't listened to it yet, but on the headline: "Expect new political movement" … I hope he's right. As in, a group that stands for election.

      I doubt they'd get many votes at all, but it's much better to have them test their support by using the democratic process.

      • Ross 4.1.1

        I doubt they'd get many votes at all,

        It’ll be fascinating when the next climate change protest springs up. You’ll no doubt be telling the protesters to stand for Parliament. And when they don’t, you’ll be telling them in no uncertain terms that their protest is illegitimate. 🙂

        • observer

          Do you even think for a moment before posting this nonsense? I do try and keep things polite in these discussions, but you really could help by making a tiny effort before you hit "Reply".

          Climate change, political party. You can work it out, I believe in you.

          • Tony Veitch (not etc.)

            It amazes me how many intelligent commentators on here – persist in flogging dead horses!

            Give it up. observer.

    • solkta 4.2

      He's radical but not in a violent way but wants a revolution. So which is it?

      His solution to covid, jogging.

      His basic philosophy – 'i don't give a fuck about others'.

      • Matiri 4.2.1

        I listened to the interview, he worked in IT and lost his job. Made me wonder about his analytical skills, or lack of them, if he was a developer!

        • McFlock

          Doesn't feel any need to look out for others, thinks it's sad people mask up and cross the road to avoid him. Some devs lack social skills.

          I found it interesting – you could tell the bits where he was floundering with basic concepts and the bits where he'd self-researched some online pat response or statistic to confirm his bias.

          The other interesting bit was where he openly aligned himself with the "far right". That's different: most people in my experience (regardless on their actual place on a political spectrum) tend to self-identify as "centre". Centre-left, centre-right, or just plain centre. Like, I've known folks well to the left of the overton window or entire spectrum call themselves "centre-left" then advocate nationalising the entire private sector.

          So possibly the dude is so disconnected from the rest of NZ that he's feeling safe enough to come out as far-right, or he's doing the thing where some folks try to align themselves with things they see have an effect in society. The occasional folks who impersonate cops and try to order people about.

    • Sanctuary 4.3

      "…. Politically, Shaun describes himself as a liberal with sympathy for the far-right…"

      I guess he means he wants libertarian authoritarianism? WTF? What an idiot.

      You know, it is possible for someone to hold a rational, sincere and passionate set of views and still be a complete fruitcake not worth giving the time of day to.

  5. aj 5

    doubt they'd get many votes at all, but it's much better to have them test their support by using the democratic process.

    I agree, but I don't think they care about democracy. They only care about what they care about. They want 'revolution'
    He was very coy about how he pays his way in life, he rejects government and taxation but is probably happy to take welfare assistance.

  6. Visubversa 6

    Their tactics are internationally coordinated, their demands are internationally coordinated, their rhetoric and symbols are internationally coordinated. The "leaderless" tactic is also a cover for the international motivation and inspiration from the political extremists in the USA. This is not an indigenous Kiwi movement.

  7. Cricklewood 8

    Suspect Coster has made a real rod for his back saying he's going to get vehicles towed. The army don't seem keen and the Towies are sympathetic.

    There was a pretty good interview with a Tow company owner on Nat Rad i’ll try and find the link later…

    • observer 8.1

      Perhaps the tow truck owners could provide a list of things they do and don't support, according to their political preferences, so that in future we'll all know where we can park our cars illegally.

      Then perhaps when the tow truck owners require health care or other essential services the staff could say "Sorry, you're not on the list of people we approve of".

      Or, you know, we could just carry on living in a democracy with elected governments and laws that we don't all like all the time.

      • Cricklewood 8.1.1

        Any business can choose which contracts they take and those they don't.

        Perhaps if Councils didn't contract out their core functions it wouldn't be a problem?

        • Gypsy

          Do you seriously think running a tow truck service is core Council business? Mind you, I agree with your first comment about Coster and the towies…he’s proving to be a bit of a liability.

          • UncookedSelachimorpha

            The current experience suggests it should be.

            • Gypsy

              The current experience is precisely the reason it shouldn't be. This is a rare and isolated incident, where the truckie work force seem to agree with the protestors.

        • dv

          Do the towing cos have contracts with the council?

          If so does the contract allow them to pick and choose who they tow?

      • Peter 8.1.2

        Is the message that if you're, for example, Mongrel Mob, Headhunters, Black Power or whatever gang, you park anywhere, anytime for however long you like, because towies would be afraid of 'getting the bash.'

        So the answer is you get, for example, Mongrel Mob, Headhunters, Black Power or whatever gang, to be the towies.

        It could get a tad complicated if the gang, whichever side they were on, had a bishop on the side.

        • Ad

          There are legal prohibitions about holding a towie V Class license, where criminal record is taken into account.

          Even tow truck drivers have standards.

  8. ianmac 9

    It is beyond my comprehension as to just what this frail strange girl is saying and why the crowd is so supportive. She stripped naked, coated herself with cocoanut oil and backed into the police. She has been declared tapu and is a hero. WTF?

    Video of yesterday’s speech from the woman who was arrested last week while naked. (Bryce Edward twitter)

  9. tsmithfield 10

    I supported the mandate in the initial stages because I thought the practicalities of getting the population vaccinated outweighed the human rights concerns around forced medical procedures.

    However, now that we are at a point where the vast majority of people are vaccinated; we are at much greater risk of catching Covid from a vaccinated person, and that, given the very low numbers of unvaccinated people, the human rights considerations are starting to outweigh the practical public health considerations IMO.

    I expect, that even though the risk of hospitalisation is higher for unvaccinated people, because the vast majority of people are now vaccinated, hospitalised Covid cases will mainly be vaccinated people.

    • weka 10.1

      Problem is, going into omicron is the worst time to remove the mandates, and the people pushing for the mandates to be removed are part of a hugely problematic movement.

      What do you think would happen to/with/in that movement if the mandates were removed this week (or a timeframe for removal is announced)?

      What happens if there is a new vaccine that is more effective against omicron and the next variant and we need the mandates to get the vax rate high quickly like we did last year?

      There is another option, albeit unlikely with Labour, and that's to change the conditions of the mandates. Raise benefits, help people find other jobs, shift the two NZ rhetoric to one of inclusion and belonging again.

      • tsmithfield 10.1.1

        The thing is, Weka, when will ever be a good time to remove mandates? Once Omicron has gone, there will likely be other varieties coming through to arguably justify continuation of mandates as you point out.

        I think the human rights considerations now outweigh the hazards from unvaccinated people. So, I don't really think mandates are justified from a human rights perspective and I think we should be giving that more weight now.

        I agree, removing them right now may not be a good idea. But, I think there could be some sort of indication of the conditions under which mandates will be removed. For instance, after Omicron has peaked or similar.

        For me, I value a free society, and the sooner we can get back to that the better.

        • Ad

          The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet is starting to agree with you, and will report back to Cabinet in a couple of months.

          Covid-19 Omicron outbreak: Government reviewing traffic light system – NZ Herald

        • weka

          I agree, removing them right now may not be a good idea. But, I think there could be some sort of indication of the conditions under which mandates will be removed. For instance, after Omicron has peaked or similar.

          But you already know this doesn't make sense. The point of the mandates is twofold: to get vax rates high, and to protect public health by lowering risk of spread of an infectious disease in key places where it is either known to spread fast, or where there are vulnerable people.

          Are you suggesting for instance that age care homes should be allowed to employ unvaccinated staff once this first wave of omicron has peaked?

          For me, I value a free society, and the sooner we can get back to that the better.

          Cool. I look forward to you making political arguments for the removal of welfare sanctions. Start today if you like.

          • tsmithfield

            "But you already know this doesn't make sense. The point of the mandates is twofold: to get vax rates high, and to protect public health by lowering risk of spread of an infectious disease in key places where it is either known to spread fast, or where there are vulnerable people."

            I think the vaccination rate box has obviously been ticked. But, so far as occupations go, the elderly in old people's homes now, are probably more at risk from vaccinated than unvaccinated people, given that vaccinated people are quite capable of getting Omicron and spreading it around, and that there are very few unvaccinated people around. So, I am not sure that argument is quite as compelling now.

            "Cool. I look forward to you making political arguments for the removal of welfare sanctions. Start today if you like.''

            I will leave you to make that argument. You could probably do it much better than me.smiley

            • weka

              I'm unclear, are you saying that old people's homes should be free to employ people not vaccinated against covid?

              I will leave you to make that argument. You could probably do it much better than me

              Yeah, but you could learn, just like you have with covid. What I want to know is if you support freedom for all people, and what that means in practical terms.

              • tsmithfield

                "I'm unclear, are you saying that old people's homes should be free to employ people not vaccinated against covid?''

                I think that if we are at a point where the elderly are at just as much threat of catching Covid from vaccinated as they are from those who are unvaccinated, then it is difficult to justify a mandate that prevents unvaccinated from working in old people's homes.

                If this is the case, then we probably need to move to some other measure to protect elderly people. For instance by requiring regular testing of workers, vaccinated or not.

                "What I want to know is if you support freedom for all people, and what that means in practical terms.''

                For me, I think that would mean a full return to the bill of rights so that applies to all people. Particularly clause 11:

                "Everyone has the right to refuse to undergo any medical treatment.''


                I think mandates are not consistent with that clause, especially if they involve the potential loss of a job, and especially when there is no longer justification for the mandate in practical terms.

                Some have argued that mandates don't invalidate clause 11 because job loss is a consequence of a free choice. However, I disagree with that, because, in principle, it isn't that far away from someone insisting vaccination at the point of a gun, where there would also be a free choice; get vaccinated, or choose to get shot.

                • McFlock

                  I think that if we are at a point where the elderly are at just as much threat of catching Covid from vaccinated as they are from those who are unvaccinated, then it is difficult to justify a mandate that prevents unvaccinated from working in old people's homes.

                  Depends on the phrasing.

                  If there are ten workers (five unvaxxed) and one vulnerable person who is just as likely to catch it from either group, maybe that's a discussion to have. If the data is reliable.

                  If there are nine vaccinated workers and one unvaccinated worker, and the vulnerable person has a 50/50 chance of catching it from wither group, losing that one worker halves the chances of the vulnerable person getting it.

                  • tsmithfield

                    There would unlikely be equal numbers of vaxxed and unvaxxed workers given that the vast majority are vaccinated.

                    Hence, if there are 10 vaxxed workers and one unvaxxed worker, the risk might be very slightly higher to the patients than 11 vaccinated workers. But if that worker wasn't there, the patients would still be at great risk of infection.

                    Obviously, if vaccinated people are getting sick and are contagious, then vaccine mandates are insufficient to protect the elderly under their care, and other methods are required such as routine testing and ensuring that the elderly themselves are vaccinated.

                    Here is a question for you: Our medical system may soon be under considerable pressure due to staff being off sick. Given what I have explained above, do you think the added care benefit of having some unvaccinated nurses on staff would outweigh the risk cost of being understaffed.

                    • McFlock

                      You're not getting the point that it has nothing to do with a binary "can you catch it from person X", it's about the level of probability.

                      "Very slightly"? What is that, in numbers? If a greater risk is halved to merely a "great risk", does that mean the halving of the risk is pointless?

                      As to your question: probably, yes. If only because we can't trust the wilfully-unvaccinated nurses to not second-guess the evidence for best practise guidelines because they did their own research and know better. But also because a hospital is a place for disease, and placing them in a position where they can be infected and infect other vulnerable people is a clear OSH issue.

                    • tsmithfield

                      I am not sure about that.

                      If vaccinated people are 5% less likely to spread the virus, it may not be an issue to have an unvaccinated person in a large team if the added benefit justifies that. If vaccinated are 50% less likely to spread then it may be an issue.

                      The info I have found shows that vaccinated are less likely to spread the virus. But it doesn't say by how much.


                      Although there is this link through to the abstract of the research that gives stats. But I can't understand the analysis in the abstract. I haven't worked with that analysis method before.

                      If you are better able to understand the stats, I would be interested.


                    • McFlock

                      Interesting paper, probably needs to be a few more.

                      Most of it's comparing two omicron subvariants against each other, rather than specifically looking at vaccine efficacy. Quick scan says they're talking positive test results for the primary and secondary infections.

                      Table 2 seeeems (and this is a tentative result of a skim through) to indicate that a double dose or previous infection is about the same as unvaccinated with regards to susceptability and transmissability, while a booster is associated with lower odds. But it's across all vaccines, not just pfizer.

                      Even against the most transmissable variant, boosters still cut the odds of transmission by a fifth. That's pretty big if you're purchasing by volume.

                    • tsmithfield

                      Thanks for that.

                      I also could see that transmissibility wasn't the main point of the article. But thanks for interpreting that for me. I've tended to use multiple regression in most of my study and not so much to do with odds.

                      So, it looks like getting the booster does make quite a big difference. It also shows the problem that those who are double vaxxed but not boosted may not be a lot better off than unvaccinated people now in some ways.

                    • McFlock

                      The vaccinated-but-not-boosted category included all vaccines and prior infections. It's a particularly fuzzy area of the paper.

                      Basically, though, at that level the main thing is that there is some very light evidence that vaccines, especially boosters, make a significant difference even in regards to omicron transmissability. But there's not much evidence on that overall, at this stage.

                      Also, I’m not a clinician or academic, lol

                  • gsays

                    I notice the study is supported by Chan Zuckerberg group.

                    They are one of the heroes in Micheal Lewis book, Pandemic.

                    Great read, looking at some of the different players leading up to and during the pandemic.

                    The CDC and Trump's administration don't come out too flash.

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 10.1.2

        Given it is the booster rather than 2 jabs that gives temporary resistance to spreading omicron…there is a lot to be said for updating the mandate to a booster requirement.

        Then in 2-3 months, after the omicron wave, the mandates could be dropped, future variants permitting.

        • Cricklewood

          If you believe them to be essential from a health perspective they need to be extended to a third shot immediately.

          Not doing that is basically an admission they're now in effect a form of punishment.

          • weka

            have a look at somewhere like Northland, there are still areas that are under 80% or under 90% double vaxxed. Areas with high % of Māori and low income people who are more at risk from contagious illness. That's how we keep covid but distribute it unfairly, by looking at national rates rather than on the ground.


            • Cricklewood

              So in that case you support the immediate extension of the mandate to the booster? It's very clear 2 shots doesn't significantly slow the spread of Omicron.

              • weka

                I don't have enough information to know if that's useful in the context of the overall plan, including logistically. Remember that the main point of the mandate is to protect vulnerable people and lessen workplace etc spread. We are about to find out if we are going to have worker shortages due to omicron and self isolating, and this is a distinctly different situation than Delta. Multiple, interacting factors, not simple black and white like it might seem on the face of it.

    • Tricledrown 10.2

      So what level do you call vaccinated TSM.

      1 dose

      2doses ,was good for Delta

      Boosted ,is now the best protection for Omricon.

  10. Pataua4life 11

    I wonder what the left would say if the protesters down in Welly pulled out a shotgun and put a few rounds of bird shot through the NZ flag.

    It is rather funny how the so called progressives have become the new oppressors.

    Whenua Fenua Enua Vanua: Tame Iti's firearm convictions overturned on appeal

      • Pataua4life 11.1.1

        I am also jabbed three times but I still don't believe in mandates or vaccine passes.

        The time for them has passed and they should go.

        • Nic the NZer

          The medical profession has had vaccine mandates for several decades. Should these go?

          And yes they were somewhat leaky regulations, enforced by educators on students and then merely by contract and standards on professionals. But they were always there and mostly complied with.

          • weka

            there is a meaningful difference between mandates that affect one going into a certain career and ones that mean a lot of people across a number of sectors lose existing jobs and get basically told to fuck off by the government.

            • Nic the NZer

              Absolutely. I expect most should be removed once the pandemic is resolved.

              But just blanket removing all mandates is unprecedented, even if the earlier implementation was slightly leaky.

              • tsmithfield

                "once the pandemic is resolved''

                I think you have nailed the problem right there. When will it ever be resolved? There will always be new mutations coming out with unkown threats.

                So, when do we decide the pandemic is sufficiently resolved to remove mandates?

                • Nic the NZer

                  We (advised by MoH experts) will obviously resolve that the pandemic is sufficiently resolved to remove mandates when the pandemic is sufficiently resolved to remove mandates.

                  Obviously the govt is hopeing that will be July, but thats their best guess.

          • Molly

            Given that medical staff are dealing with medically compromised people, there may be a statistical model that determines harm that supports that position.

            (I don't know if that's true, though. Perhaps someone can confirm?)

            • Nic the NZer

              You don't need a statistical model to understand that sanitary and hygiene standards need to be high at a hospital. Of course a correct model will show that hospitals with higher staff vaccination rates are less likely to contract and pass on viral infections against which they are vaccinated, but you don't need a model for that to be obvious.

              • weka

                apparently you do, because there's been the argument that overseas the hospital overwhelm is because of sending people home who are close contacts with positive cases. Which may well be true, but it doesn't trump the need to stop people from spreading an infectious disease in a building housing lots of particularly vulnerable people.

                • Nic the NZer

                  I don't think a statistical model is able to answer that. Its hanging on a switch when a hospital needs staff to operate even when they are ill. This is probably too chaotic a question to resolve with typical statistical models. Its also going to have different answers for different hospitals at different times.

              • Molly

                I wasn't referring to the model, I was referring to a previously existing mandate for medical staff. Sorry I wasn't clear.

                If there is just a mandate, I’m sure they would have data to justify.

                • Nic the NZer

                  How this works in practice is that you know a vaccine is protective and has certain characteristics (such as being sterilizing or not, frequency of dose) and diseases have certain characteristics (infectiousness, how they are transmitted). But modelling the tradeoffs can only really tell you what you put into the model from there. You can make the decisions about what should be mandated just as well without using a model.

                  • Molly

                    Ok, have no disagreement with that.

                    Just didn't know there was an existing requirement for medical staff to be vaccinated.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Its previously more of a patchwork of contracts, practices, professional standards and study requirements than a single mandate. But I don't see a good argument for a patchwork standard being ideal in practice.

                    • Molly

                      @Nic the NZer.

                      I understood the Defence Force was unique in that it had such a requirement for some vaccines, and can understand the need for such on deployment.

                      I can understand that the medical profession has a series approaches that approximates the same, as opposed to a centrally mandated requirement. I would think that if a central mandate was made it would have to be backed up with data as an example of best practice.

                    • Nic the NZer []

                      I expect it would be backed up by data, but the relevant data is relating to vaccine and disease characteristics.

                      Most of the hospital data in this area is about detecting when processes are not working, not how well they are working in some trade off. So you would be asking if there are staff or patient cases of some disease (esp picked up at the hospital) rather than modelling how many you expect if vaccination isn't mandatory.

                      There was a RSV virus outbreak last year and protocols were being updated across the health sector.

    • weka 11.2

      different context though right? Iti wasn't on parliament grounds, and it wasn't 2022 with all the attendant issues NZ now has around firearms.

      • Pataua4life 11.2.1

        NZ did not have an issue with firearms. We had one foreign nutter that should never have been able to get a firearms license but was able to get one due to the changes that this govt introduced.

        Then we had the ban and a govt that is soft on crime and the gangs and firearm crime has exploded in nz.

    • McFlock 11.3

      Depends on whether Stephen Franks makes another police complaint.

      Although might be a bit more difficult to argue in favour of firing a weapon in the middle of a city, even if they could clear a circle wide enough for safety purposes. And as soon as the weapon is spotted, everything will go up a notch. So might not be a good tactical idea.

  11. weka 12

    Just catching up this morning, thinking about the police response. Lots of liberals and lefties angry that the police haven't forced the protest to end, and there's the temptation to see the Wellington police and how the police nationally, as weak and useless. But I'm going to hazard a guess that instead they are working off knowledge of the situation and who they dealing with, and they understand if they go in with force that things will probably get really ugly.

    It would also play directly into the hands of the macho dudes who are spoiling for a fight, both the alt right, and the ones on the ground that are there for the aggro. Those people want things to go ugly. There are implications of this far beyond this protest or the state of the parliament lawn. Radicalisation via confirmation that the government really is a repressive state.

    Listening to Commissioner Andrew Coster's announcement to the media yesterday, he's clearly signalling that avoiding that violent confrontation is a key part of their strategy. This is a really good thing, for all of us.

    He also gave some clear explanations for why the protest was allowed to establish: at the start they weren't doing anything illegal and the police can't interfere with a protest that is legal. Once they were set up as a camp, it was very hard to then evict them. This is the NZ Police upholding our right to protest, in law and in practice. The left should be supporting that with all we've got given what is happening overseas. (with protests, but also the UK government's attempt to introduce protest suppression legislation).

    Police focus currently is on sorting out the illegal aspects of the protest and where the protest is unfairly and unreasonably impacting on other citizens eg the car blockade.

    • Chris T 12.1

      Was pretty cringy watching that Coster dude trying to be staunch and saying cars will be towed and then semi begging for tow truck drivers willing to do it.

      Not the greatest look.

      Saw him on AM this morning and the dude was clearly trying to distance the police from Mallard's actions.

      Would be funny if businesses around parliament weren't basically screwed because politicians are to stubborn to walk about 200 meters and address them.

      • observer 12.1.1

        Coster has been calm in the interviews I've seen/heard (and remember his predecessor was Mike Bush). In the AM interview you mention I thought he was very patient, as Ryan Bridge was so obviously trying to trap him into escalating the drama. Shoddy tabloid "gotcha", and Coster didn't play along, good on him.

        • weka

          He's impressed me with his calm and the balance he is striking between being open and giving answers, and not buying into the bullshit (from MSM or the protestors).

        • Patricia 2

          Yesterday Ryan Bridge made the comment that it was not very "kind" of Trevor Mallard to turn the sprinklers on and play loud music. He felt it was "unkind" to all the children at the protest and that rumour had it that there was now a newborn baby in the camp. Fortunately his female colleague pointed out that the children were the responsibilities of their parents.

      • weka 12.1.2

        do you want macho instead of smart?

      • mpledger 12.1.3

        Jacinda addressed them via tv and I know they heard because I heard protesters talking about it while I was walking behind them on the street. The people who are to blame for businesses crashing and burning are the people who are blocking the access to these businesses and scaring people away from the area.

      • gsays 12.1.4

        Anecdotally, yesty I heard the Army had said no to the PTB to removing vehicles.

        TBF, it was third or fourth hand. My son is mates with the offspring of someone high up in the military.

        • Nic the NZer

          Probably a good call at this stage. If the protest packs up because their camping holiday resources are exhausted (and eventually you get sick of out door toilets) then its quite hard to prop up the crack down narrative online.

          • weka

            moving the cars so the surrounding area can function is quite a high priority I would have thought.

        • Shanreagh

          On one of the Newshub or Stuff links yesterday 15/2/22 it had actually said that NZ Defence Force had been approached and had not yet responded.

          "Cmmr Coster then admitted that he's called on the Defence Force for help with towing the cars but they never got back to him"

          I have worked with, & been friends with Defence Force staff and would some how doubt that Mum or Dad is coming home and telling children about what went on at the office today when it covers potential security issues.

          But I guess there is always one that may not believe the adage of 'loose lips….'.

          The security across our office when I worked alongside NZ Defence Force people was incredible. Crypto phones/faxes, scrambled phones, single copy memos delivered by hand by couriers with the bags locked onto their arms, individually coded and tagged cabinet papers so they know where leaks may be coming from….need to know rigidly enforced.

          • gsays

            "Cmmr Coster then admitted that he's called on the Defence Force for help with towing the cars but they never got back to him"

            Could be true, also, the message could be managed. Cops have spin doctors a media centre after all.


            • weka

              that one's a bit embarassing for the Police though.

              • Shanreagh

                As at yesterday they had not got back to Coster. The reason I put the link up was to provide facts as opposed to anecdote.

                Since then also the whole op is being coordinated through a higher level specialist unit.

                • gsays

                  So, they haven't gotten back to him today either.

                  Lost his number?

                  Spin dept still working on the wording?

                  Maybe anecdote was correct.

      • Tricledrown 12.1.5

        Chris T.When you have white supremacists in that crowd NO.

        Why didn't Luxon address them.

        You know why.

        This is a anti everything crowd no politician is going to be able to appease a bunch of nutters who all have different gripes.

        Chris T you are bonkers if you think that's going to work.

        Philip Arps claim he is going to Wellington to witness an execution .

        Hope SIS ,police,gscb are doing a better job at spying on home grown extremists than a couple of years ago.

    • aj 12.2

      Very well said Weka

      This is the NZ Police upholding our right to protest, in law and in practice. The left should be supporting that with all we've got given what is happening overseas

  12. weka 13

    Yesterday McFlock and I had a discussion about to what extent the peace and love protestors were supporting the nazi/white supremacist protestors. I was making the argument that 1) many there will be politically naive and not understand the context or political implications (esp as they eschew MSM and often don't trust liberals), and 2) that they are still accountable for protesting together and the issue is of how that is addressed.

    I'm going to link to two kinds of imagery of the protests, because the more we can see and understand what is happening on the ground, the better our analysis and response.

    1. the peace and love hippies
    2. the nazi/white supremacists
    • McFlock 14.1

      Damn, Winnie will be pissed that Seymour is fighting him for the nutbar vote.

      • Robert Guyton 14.1.1

        Those two love to spat.

        • Peter

          You reckon there'll be spats when Arp, Alp, Power and Tamaki get into power?

          I'd love to hear Seymour's chats with each of them. Maybe there's a Steve Braunias column coming with the reveal all about those.

  13. Blade 15

    The other day I posted a list of questions I had been musing over. (post 35)

    3-Will some police officers refuse to participate in any forced removal of protesters?

    On Kate Hawkesby's show this morning (5.27 am) someone CLAIMED some police refused to volunteer for protest duty because they couldn't stand Cuddles Costa. I'm guessing the same MAY happen if police are forced to remove protesters.

    4-Could a political party leader break ranks and form some type of dialogue with protesters?

    Yes, Dave Seymour.

    I'm fascinated that only now are people in the media and politics waking up to a fact that should have been implemented on day three of the protest.

    Where the government is lucky, is the fact protesters don't seem too politically savvy.

    Imagine if protesters singled out Robbo with loud hailers, being he's the Wellington Central MP.

    ''We want Robbo, We want Robbo.''

    Maybe then people might ask…where is Robbo, and why is Dave taking the initiative?

    Jacinda, the hole you are digging for yourself, Labour and the nation, grows deeper by the day.

    • Peter 15.1

      Maybe they don't even know who Robbo is and his relevance to the neighbourhood.

      Then again it's most likely only a small minority are from his electorate.

  14. Robert Guyton 16

    "…protesters don't seem too politically savvy…"

    Ya think?

    "..someone CLAIMED some police refused to volunteer for protest duty …"

    Ha ha ha ha ha!



    "Imagine if…"

    It's all good, you've got the imagining-thing in hand.

    Let us know if anything substantial eventuates.


    • Blade 16.1

      ”…protesters don't seem too politically savvy…" Ya think?”

      So far, yes.

      ”Someone CLAIMED some police refused to volunteer for protest duty …"Ha ha ha ha ha!”

      When you listen to ex cops, serving cops and families of cops ring talkback, you eventually get feel for the type of things they say and text.

      However, that isn't proof – hence the the use of capitals for the words ClAIMED and MAY.

      For someone who doesn't listen to talkback……laughyes

      You forgot to mention question 4 yes

      ''Let us know if anything substantial eventuates.''

      I sure will. In the mean time the blog can rely on you for riveting commentary.

      • Robert Guyton 16.1.1

        Why on earth would the protesters want to talk with the Wellington Central MP?

        99% of them are out-of-towners, and believe the issue is a global one?
        They’re more likely to chant, “We want Trump!!”

        • Blade

          ''Protesters don't seem too politically savvy…" Ya think?”

          An answer to your question.

        • Blade

          Oh, Robert, HDPA is very surprised at the amount of support protesters are now getting from a radio demographic that usually believes protesters should be hanged high and hanged good… even criminals.

          A spokesperson for some towies said many towies have been hurt by mandates. So they support the protesters.


          • observer

            False. One towie made that claim, on RNZ Morning Report. Not substantiated by other sources. See link below.

          • Robert Guyton



            Business people, not wanting to associate with a controversial situation, where their business might be adversely affected by the exposure??

            Colour me surprised!!


            And to top that off, HDPA "very surprised"!!

            This is deeply upsetting!



            • Blade

              Meanwhile the PM is in lala land as Barry Soper works her over about school children banned from activities because they are unvaxxed. The PM promised such a things wouldn't happened. She palmed the issue off to Chris.

              Rats jumping off a sinking ship?

              That's a common image Lefties love to paint when National have had problems in the past.

              My Karma can be a bitch.

              • observer

                Link, or at least context please? Was there an Ardern press conference?

                (your imagination about what Barry Soper is doing is not always the most reliable source …)

                • Blade

                  He is one of the few who has gone out amongst protesters to get their story.

                  True or not? No imagination involved.

                  HDPA political report from Barry 4.45pm. He stopped the PM on her way to a press conference

                  Barry has been swamped with texts after talkback covered a story about children being discriminated against when it comes to SOME school activities because they aren't vaxxed.

                  This does NOT apply to all schools.

                  Look, I'm afraid talkback is fluid and no one sits there glued to the radio. Also not all stories are posted are posted on ZBs site.

                  • observer

                    He is one of the few who has gone out amongst protesters to get their story.

                    Absolutely false, as covered and linked on here many times.

                    TV1, TV3, Stuff, RNZ … every major media outlet has had reporters going "out amongst protesters to get their story."

                    And getting abused.

                    • Blade

                      Yes, and then those reporters repaired inside to the Beehive.

                      Barry hasn't.

                    • observer

                      So you made a claim about other reporters not going out there, and now you admit it was false.

                      And you wonder why you're accused of trolling. Just make a tiny effort to check facts first, please.

                    • Blade

                      ''So you made a claim about other reporters not going out there, and now you admit it was false.''

                      No, I admit nothing. Many of the reports came from within the beehive after they went out once or twice into the crowd.

                      Barry is still there.

                      Sometimes when I write a post I keep thinking what will they pick apart when they can't assail my main points? I now use capitals for some words to stop misunderstandings. And in this case, for not being more descriptive, I get accused of trolling. If I wanted to do similar, I could have a field day with some of your posts.

                  • Robert Guyton

                    Barry! Barry!!!!

                    I'm completely sold, if Barry!

                • Blade

                  On now. ZB, a parents story.

              • Joe90

                Soper works her over

                And there it is.


                work someone over

                1. to threaten, intimidate, or beat someone


              • Hetzer

                You are surprised Blade? Its Real Politik, you dont get to be a leader of any political persuasion without being ruthless and an effortless liar. Everything else is fluff and spin, and slogan…poverdy, communidy, conversashuns etc

  15. tsmithfield 17

    Something had to give so far as communication with the protesters is concerned.

    Seymour doesn't have to worry about brand image and staying staunch as the main parties seem to.

    All he has done is given them some ground rules that may create an environment where politicians are prepared to engage with the protesters:

    "That's why it is time for dialogue. But that has to happen with certain conditions."

    Seymour, who was joined by ACT MP Nicole McKee, said the conditions he delivered included removing vehicles blocking the roads around Parliament and Victoria University, and a guarantee that no more abuse would be hurled at passersby."

    Even if you don't like Seymour, I think this was the right thing to do. Hopefully it will pave the way for more civilised behaviour and enable a bipartisan group of politicians to meet with the protesters so they can at least feel like they are being listened to.

    • observer 17.1

      Seymour's statement:

      "The message I’ve sent to the protestors is that, until they clear the streets, stop occupying Victoria University, and remove the unacceptable behaviour from the protest, it’s unlikely anyone from Parliament will be out on the steps listening to them. Certainly not me."

      3 conditions. Not going to happen any time soon, are they. But I genuinely hope I'm wrong, for the sake of the local people at least.

      • tsmithfield 17.1.1

        But at least the protesters can't claim that the politicians won't engage with them.

        And if they meet those conditions, then they might get what they want so far as talking to the politicians, anyway.

        • DS

          No-one cares what these nutters claim or don't claim.

          You don't get to threaten to murder people, and then turn around and whinge that those people aren't talking to you.

    • gsays 17.2

      Jeez, he has stolen a trick from the other parties/MPs.

      I am no fan of Gordon Brittas but he is showing Mallard, 4th in charge of the country, what leadership can look like.

      He has a good line with ‘gluing the country back together’.

  16. observer 18

    And predictably, the story about tow truck drivers supposedly supporting the protesters is not quite what it seems …

    “We have been inundated with death threats and threats on our business,” one operator told The Spinoff by phone. “There are some points where we are getting phone calls every minute. They’re just clogging up the phone line so we can’t take jobs.”

    Death threats. Even from Canada. Nice.

    • Robert Guyton 18.1

      But HDPA is surprised by their reluctance to tow – surprised!!

    • DS 18.2

      I'd also suggest that the number of unvaxxed Wellington adults is 1-2%. That tow-truck business owner whingeing about mandates is taking the piss.

    • weka 18.3

      It's both.

      However RNZ reports the real reason many tow truck companies did not want to get involved was because they sympathised with the protesters.

      "There's all different reasons being put forward, but the reason that the majority of my colleagues don't want to put their tow trucks out there is because they are sympathetic to what's going on in Parliament," said Greg Cox, who owns Wellington's Cox Heavy Salvage.

      Not wanting to sour their relationship with police, Cox said some operators had made up excuses for not lending a hand in the towing operation.

      Myself, I'm sick of the partisan bullshit and binary thinking.

      • observer 18.3.1

        But that story is based on one source, as numerous follow-up stories have explained (linked on this thread).

        • weka

          are you honestly telling me you think there are no towies in Wellington sympathetic to the protest?

          • Muttonbird

            There's at least one. Greg Cox of Cox Heavy Salvage.

          • observer

            No. I said "one source". One is not zero.

            Cox made his claims on the radio this morning. Since then there have been many other media inquiries. e.g. the link I posted above (Spinoff).

            Multiple sources (towies) say there have been threats to them.

            One source (Cox) says the towies support the protests. No others have been found.

            As always with conflicting versions, it pays to trace stories back to the source. Media churn (X says it, Y reports X, Z reports Y, etc).

            Cox's version has gone through the churn but – so far – is the only source. Repetition is not addition.

            • weka

              what's your point? That there is only a single towie in Wellington that supports the protest?

              • observer


                No. My point is self-explanatory. Accurate reporting.

                I would guess that there are others but we don't know because there have been no reports of that.

                I don't know how much clearer I can be.

                If you (or anybody) have any other reports please share. Otherwise it is only constant repetition of one single source.

                • weka

                  If it was self-evident I wouldn't have asked.

                  You said,

                  And predictably, the story about tow truck drivers supposedly supporting the protesters is not quite what it seems …

                  We didn't know what it seemed like to you 🤷‍♀️

                  I've seen MSM reports of two issues with towies: threats, and support for protest.

                  Both seem likely to me.

      • Blade 18.3.2

        Thankyou, Weka, for some balance…it helps us Zero and One people out.sad

        Talking of bad shit going down, I see TV reported Marama Davidson was abused by a protester while accepting a petition.

      • joe90 18.3.3

        Cox is/was a right leaning fiscally conservative local body polly. Of course he and his ilk sympathise with anyone opposed to anything involving the Labour Party.

  17. observer 19

    Yet another claim turns out to be untrue … they don't have support from local iwi:

  18. observer 21

    Blade describes this as "Barry Soper works her over". Score!

    He hasn't yet understood that nowadays there's this internet thing, so we can actually see for ourselves.

    • Blade 21.1

      Yeah, I call it a working over because the PM was telling Barry one thing, while children are receiving another thing. Listen again to Barry's questions. And what he says about texts and emails. How often do we hear this double speak from the PM?

      1- Covid?

      2- Housing?

      3- Rental accommodation?

      4- Mortgage loans?

      5- Coming up- regulating property managers?

      Put all this together, and in my OPINION it just adds up to another going over.

      Thanks for` the tip about this internet thingy. My carrier pigeon is getting tired relaying all my messages to The Standard’s mail room.

  19. mpledger 22

    Why won't the leaders of the protest reveal themselves? Why do they work through intermediaries? It's difficult not to think that their real identities would discredit their position.

  20. PsyclingLeft.Always 23

    Threatening to kidnap and lynch an MP (seven months pregnant) and her staff?

    Peaceful? Bullshit !

    • Peter 23.1

      I know they're all lovely people with genuinely held beliefs, just doing yoga and stuff.

      "However, threats and aggression remain. A claimed security guard for the protest was captured on video aggressively demanding police officers leave Parliament grounds on Tuesday, obstructing the officers with his body while stating: “This is private property, you are trespassing".

      Two Stuff journalists were intimidated out of Parliament’s grounds on Tuesday morning, followed by a group of protesters who claimed they had no right to be there. Other protesters were coming up and apologising for the issue, saying people were anxious, but they did not appear to have any central control.

      Later in the morning, a protester who was livestreaming for the conspiracy-promoting Counterspin media platform accosted members of charity group Save the Children as they were handing a petition to Green Party MPs Marama Davidson and Jan Logie as well as National MP Harete Hipango, at the back door to Parliament."

      • PsyclingLeft.Always 23.1.1

        Yea, most could be dumbfounded/dumbasses ?….but theres more than a small element that add quite violent and dangerous to the mix. A worry…..

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