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Convoy protest 20/2/22

Written By: - Date published: 6:05 am, February 20th, 2022 - 160 comments
Categories: covid-19 - Tags: , , ,

Day 13

‘We want to feel safe’, say Wellingtonians who’ve been attacked by protesters

(Kristin Hall, 1News, video of journalist who was attacked along with his camera operator)

Stuff live updates from yesterday.


Why we need stories of strength not division (Jess Berentson-Shaw, Newsroom)

Police crack down, Maori will catch the brunt of it (Tina Ngata on understanding why police haven’t done something, twitter)

@Te_Taipo (Te Ranigikaiwhiria Kemara twitter, live reporting of the protest)

We know how to end the protest. But what would we give up in return? (Andrew Geddis, The Spinoff)

Figureheads and factions: the key people at the parliament occupation (Toby Manhire, The Spinoff)

Police wave white flag as occupiers dig in – why parliament stalemate won’t end anytime soon (Marc Daalder, Newsroom)

Number of protesters’ vehicles in vicinity of Parliament nearly doubles in two days (State of play on the ground, , Stuff)

Protest as of 18/02/22. Image Henry Cooke and Kate Newton, Stuff


Immunologist on health reasons for vaccine mandates (Checkpoint, RNZ)

What does the right to protest actually mean? (micky savage, The Standard)

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)

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

Letter of Demand (from protest organisers)

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

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


160 comments on “Convoy protest 20/2/22 ”

  1. An important article/opinion from someone who knows what they’re talking about:


    There’s no point labelling the protesters as “Nazis” or members of the “alt-right”. Instead, let’s call them what they are: Hurting, scared people who are vulnerable to being misinformed and manipulated by those who seek to undermine our democracy. My bold.

    • Jenny how to get there 1.1

      Do the protesters in Wellington even know what 'freedom' means?

      Jehan Casinader05:00, Feb 20 2022

      The answer is no, because they have never experienced it.

      When you are bowed down by a massive student debt.

      When you can't afford your rent, or the deposit for a house.

      When you are working ten hours a day or more at two jobs.

      When you feel disempowered in your daily life and nothing you do can make a difference.

      When you feel alienated from the society around you

      You don’t know what freedom is, because you have no experience of freedom.

      You just know you haven't got it.

      • Jenny how to get there 1.1.1

        I might add that the feeling of alienation and despair and powerlessness that many people feel, is also brought to us by our connected world. All we see are images of war and poverty and human misery and destruction of the natural world, and millions of people even worse off than ourselves and we feel overwhelmed and powerless to do anything about it. We also perceive that the powerful people, the people who do have the agency and power and freedom and money to do something about the state of the world. Do nothing.

        Are we free?

        Do we feel it?

        Not a bit of it.

        • vto


          freedom is nothing if not a relative measure

          on a scale

          with physical containment at one end

          and nude mung beans at the other

          our relative freedoms are clearly,

          when viewed from say the objective position of the moon,


          and bountiful

          you're spouting nonsense jenny are you there yet

          • Ad

            ah but can we do cinquains?

            • vto

              i think so

              under the lights of molesworth

              bemoaning our freedoms and driving our cars

              and getting lost in the myriad madmen, madams and misfits

              claiming the stars


              or thereabouts

          • Jenny how to get there

            The feeling of freedom can be a subjective emotion. Or an objective reality.

            The same with lack of freedom.

            Lack of freedom can be a subjective emotion. Or an objective reality

            Are the protesters on the forecourt of parliament feeling an emotion of freedom?


            Are they experiencing it?

            No. Not when they face the prospect of having to leave that place and go back to the real world of unaffordable housing and rising cost of living.

            (One of the reasons many of them will not be leaving any time soon).

            • vto

              I agree with your points about inequity and the like, not a problem at all

              but yeah nah on the freedom front

              as popularly understood

              life is a constant hardship jenny with sporadic moments of uplift dontcha know as always been say some

            • mpledger

              I don't know what it's like now because I haven't been to work for almost a week but all I saw at the start of the protest was a flotilla of pretty new and very expensive vehicles. This didn't start with the poor and the marginalised, it started out as the entitled being angry that having to think about other people was a step too far.

              • Shanreagh

                I agree with M Pledger. I saw the complete convoy from start to finish before it arrived in Wellington on the Tuesday. Significant points were the numbers of utes/4WDs etc with single men of the age that traditionally feel threatened by female leaders. The kind that make the placards about pretty little communists. The other salient point was the numbers of very expensive campervans. Also the sadly mis-spelled signs. The numbers of anti 'Jacinda' signs.

                Daily review 08/02/2022

                Perhaps the poor and oppressed by the mandates were hiding in the campervans or on the trays of the utes.

                It looked like a big group of wealthy people protesting about something. They have clearly adopted the poor and oppressed modus once they were here….I mean do we really think the drivers of flash utes and 4wd and highly specced campervans are poor and oppressed?

            • Peter

              Go back to the real world? What's that? The world that has it there's a massive conspiracy to take over the world by an introduced pretend virus and sinister vaccine by evil scientists?

      • All your points are valid, Jenny, in a wider context.

        But this protest is heading in the direction of undermining our democracy, and depriving all of us of 'freedom.'

        • Jenny how to get there

          And I agree Tony. Absolutely.

          Everyone feels an explosion is coming.
          Those at the bottom of society feel it keenest. Those at the top of society want to channel this explosion into an issue, (any issue) that doesn't threaten the inequity and powerlessness experienced by those at the bottom. So you get a coming together between the far right and far left over an issue that does not address the underlying problems.

          Open mike 09/02/2022

          9 February 2022 at 9:02 am

          A failure of the Left, leads to a resurgence of the Right
          Antivaxxers have claimed that they have attempted to file complaints against the Prime Minister and Grant Robertson with the police for murdering children.
          As the antivax movement sinks deeper into the far right conspiracy cesspool to indulge their revenge fantasies.

          As we have seen with the anti 1080 movement, the danger is this;

          As the antivax movement becomes more and more removed from reality their behavior will become more extreme Not only will their behavior become more extreme they will attract extremists to their cause.

          Extreme far right acts of vandalism against medical clinics and threats against health workers have already occurred.

          Prime Minister Arden has just slapped down her Associate Minister of Housing for suggesting that rent control could be part of the solution to cruelly unaffordable rents.

          It is this sort of cruelty that feeds into the mistrust and anti-government protests of the anti-vaxxers.


    • Blade 1.2

      Jehan Casinader. I liked the guy when he was a reporter for State TV.

      I was also upset when he was assaulted for being gay. Like he would go around causing trouble.

      But, Jehan missed the mark with his article.

      ''By those who seek to undermine our democracy.''

      Jehan should have defined who he thinks is trying to undermine our democracy.

      What's that saying about the devil?

      “The greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing the world that he did not exist.''

      So, to undermine our democracy you have to have power.

      Most importantly, you must control education.

      You must break the social cohesion of the family unit.

      You must slowly morp conservative accepted values into just a point of view.

      You must discourage and replace peoples faith in a higher being or ideal with nihilistic pursuits.

      You must replace self reliance with Dependancies .

      And on I could go

      Hey, Jehan…any bells a ringin?

      • roblogic 1.2.1

        You’re on to something Blade, now take it a step further and consider the economic policies that undermine families by keeping wages low and the cost of living high. Way more onerous and damaging than superficial identity politics distractions so beloved by useless neoliberal administrations

        • Blade

          ''You’re on to something Blade, now take it a step further and consider the economic policies that undermine families by keeping wages low and the cost of living high.''

          All the better for mind control isn't it?

          Those bastard neoliberal administrations. It's their fault folks.

          People, we are back in power now, so your problems are over.

          If Jehan was born in NZ, he would be a product of our educhasion system.

          • roblogic

            millennial narcissists teaching the kids crappy values is nothing compared to the shenanigans of right wing governments, covering up their cronyism, all the while making health, education and cost of living materially worse for the working class

    • aj 1.3

      An important article/opinion from someone who knows what they’re talking about:

      I would endorse that, very perceptive.

      But in some ways, all of this Covid stuff feels like a made-up scenario in a school exam, because New Zealand hasn’t experienced the death and devastation that other countries have seen.

      Most Kiwis haven’t had to FaceTime loved ones who are lying in ICU units, struggling to breathe. We haven’t joined Zoom funerals for people who have been killed by this virus. Our healthy young people haven’t been crippled by the effects of Long Covid.

      For two years, we have been hiding from a monster that we haven’t really seen. Perhaps that’s why some people – including the protesters – think the monster isn’t real.

      I agree, some people just don't think a threat exists.

      Meantime, the Coster interview on Q & A this morning was very good. He laid out the difficulties the police face very clearly and this should give cause for his critics to lay off a bit.

      33mm of rain midnight to 6am in Wellington and a fresh southerly. Bracing, and uncomfortable until the sun come out.

    • Rosemary McDonald 1.4

      Not one mention of those who have experienced adverse effects from the Pfizer product that go way beyond 'a sore arm and flu like symptoms'.

      And, unfortunately, he appears to be one of those 'experts' who makes epidemiological and immunological claims and backs them up with a link to another Stuff article which supports a similar claim with yet another link to another Stuff article…

      With zero actual peer reviewed studies or research. There might, perhaps in one is lucky, be the odd referenced chart from some modeller…

      Some of us expect better than this…. especially when children and adults are being punished for choosing not to take a novel pharmaceutical with limited efficacy and a disappointing safety record.

      • KJT 1.4.1

        Persistantly repeating arrant BS like "novel pharmaceutical with limited efficacy and a disappointing safety record" when you have repeatedly been shown that it is BS, with evidence. In fact look around you! shows a commendable degree of cognitive dissonance, and wilfil ignorance..

        • Rosemary McDonald

          Have you anything to say about the rest of my comment KjT?

          Are you saying the mRNA technology used in the Pfizer product is not new?

          How about you tell me what you expect from a "vaccine"?

          Prevent infection and transmission of the target virus?

          Are you saying there have been no serious adverse effects from the Pfizer product?

          So many questions…so little will to actually answer any of them.

          • Nic the NZer

            Rosemary now your miss-representing your own comment. You said the vaccine has a disappointing safety record and only asked if it has had no serious adverse side effects. But those are clearly not the same issue.

            Clearly if the vaccine had a disappointing safety record it would have been rejected by Medsafe.

          • KJT

            No vaccine ever! has totally 100%, prevented transmission and infection.

            There are the odd, "sterilising vaccines" that prevent infection. Most, however work by reducing the survival of the virus in your body, after infection. Expecting vaccines to "prevent infection" shows a fundamental mis- comprehension about how they work

            Coronavirus: few vaccines prevent infection – here's why that's not a problem (theconversation.com)

            I am trying, for the sake of my blood pressure, to aviod engaging with people who lack even a basic understanding of vaccination.

            However the dangerous level of mis information and outright BS being spread needs to be debunked by somebody.

            Side effects in the hundreds, even in the worse case scenario, and only two possible deaths, over 10 million doses, makes the covid vaccine one of the safest medical treatments. Those numbers are available to you from many sources, including some you have referenced yourself.
            No one, to my knowledge, who has any background of expertise at all and is supporting vaccination, has claimed there are no chances of side effects. Nothing is free of side effects, including lying in bed.
            Vaccination is many, many times safer than getting covid while unvaccinated. Even for young people. Plenty of supporting evidence from around the world for that. Especially from countries like the USA, with patchy vaccination rates.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              Serious questions.

              If the Pfizer product is as safe and effective as you claim… and is many, many times safer than getting covid while unvaccinated… why has it been necessary for (mostly) western governments to cajole, coerce, bribe and threaten people to take it after about 65% of the eligible population has been jabbed?

              And why have some governments, like New Zealand…chosen to actively identify those not taking the product and punish them with job losses, derision, segregation and exclusion? Even children and young people who are at next door to no risk from Covid infection?

              If the 'vaccine' is as safe and effective as you claim such draconian measures would not be 'necessary'. Folks would be trampling over each other to get theirs.

              Could it be that for a small but not insignificant percentage of the population this mRNA product is anything but safe?

              I know this might be hard for you to get your head around…as I assume you are one of the 'bit of a sore arm and flu-like symptoms' brigade…but doubt it not, for far too many these shots have been physically devastating.

              These people have been ignored and dismissed and their health struggles minimized for way too long…and whatever they have suffered…there's no fucking way they are going to risk their kids suffering the same adverse effects.

              You will see some of these people in the 'river of filth' in Wellington.

              And there's a whole swag who are terrified that they'll have to get a booster to keep their jobs.

              You will also see some of these people in the 'river of filth' in Wellington.

              And for a product that even the manufacturer says is of limited or unknown efficacy for the dominant variant.


              All mandates need to end now.

              • KJT

                FFS. It is like wackamole. The capability of anti vaccers to repeat bollocks and ignore facts.

                Where are all those "vaccine damaged" people?

                The "Floods of them filling hospitals"?

                I think we would have noticed by now.

                Meanwhile, in the real world NZ opened up for the summer with little increase in covid cases, thanks to 95% eligible vaccinated, and mandates.

                And. How Effective Are COVID-19 Vaccines Against Omicron? (healthline.com)

                • Newer data is confirming that a third dose increases antibody production and boosts effectiveness against infection to around 75 percent, and 88 percent for severe disease.
                • Rosemary McDonald

                  Where are all those "vaccine damaged" people?

                  You know that just because you deny their existence does not mean they do not exist?

                  They are down in Wellington …or friends and family are… and just want to be acknowledged and heard.

                  That's unlikely to happen now because you on the supposed Left have allowed the tiny group of Far Right shitstirrers to command this movement.

                  I did not say "Floods of them filling hospitals"? Why would you imply that I did?

                  And how long does that booster last?

                  Do you think that endless boostering is sustainable in the long term? The idea a third shot would be needed within six months for everyone was not an actual thing six months ago. Now its three months…soon folks will be hooked up to a portable drip?

                  How about naturally acquired immunity…why don't we give that a go for the vast majority of us who will not get very ill from Omicron?

                  • KJT

                    What you are failing to consider, is that without the lockdown, and public health precautions, and more recently the high level of vaccinations, helped by mandates on public facing workers, the people you are talking about would be dying of Covid.

                    Those most susceptible to reactions to vaccines, are also the ones that are most at risk of Covid.

                    In the countries that have "freedom", they would not be talking about vaccine reactions. They would be in hospital with Covid..

                  • KJT

                    "How about naturally acquired immunity"…

                    You object to vaccination, which has had two possible deaths out of 10 million doses. And the few cases at the removal of the Auckland lockdown proved that it worked, but.

                    You want to give "natural immunity" a try, which will certainly take 100's if not thousands of deaths to work? The mind boggles!

    • observer 1.5

      There's a photo in that link of the board at the protest where people write their slogans (not the video, the 3rd still photo). Prominently displayed is the message:


      This is a Q-Anon code, and I'm sure you know who they are and what they believe.

      There is also a picture of Ardern in jail with "Freemason Filth". And MAGA, of course.

      Perhaps one of our resident protesters can tell us when this was removed. After 30 seconds would be the answer, for a peace-loving totally-not-alt-right protest about freedom and mandates.

      • Shanreagh 1.5.1

        Some sense from David Farrier.


        I think if we have a date when mandates may be able to be amended from a health perspective it will be despite the protestors and not because of them. people in Govt circles will be working hard and in good faith putting up options and ideas to both the Police and the Govt.
        The protestors meantime put their ‘unrealistic but then I’m totally divorced from reality’ options up.


        (Matthew Tukaki)

    • Andrew Miller 1.6

      Sorry, but that paragraph is so confused it’s hard to know where to start.

      Are those doing the misinforming or the manipulating not protesting?
      How are ‘the protesters’ to be separated from those people given its patently obvious they’re often one and the same.
      Are they saying there’s no one protesting that’s far right or just that we shouldn’t make sweeping generalisation about ‘the protest’?
      Surely, it’s obvious that whilst it’s true that some who embrace views like ‘anti vax’ ones do so from a place of vulnerability, that many don’t. Many embrace those views for the simple reason they’ve embraced terrible views and that people of all backgrounds are capable of that.
      Whilst it’s true that we should be careful about denouncing those who maybe have been manipulated, it’s also true that to assume that of anyone who holds these views is patronising and treats them as children.
      Sometimes views and people holding them need condemning.
      It’s a bit weird to criticise the making of sweeping generalisations by making sweeping generalisations.

  2. PsyclingLeft.Always 2

    "We also need to remember that what ties all the disparate splinters of this protest together is selfishness. Even Kiwis who live hundreds of kilometres from Parliament consider it theirs, and enjoy a visit and wander through its grounds when in the capital. Allowing the more extreme elements to continue using it as a base for fomenting hate is defiling our national place."

    " https://www.odt.co.nz/opinion/editorial/respect-our-house "

    Peace loving ? No. Freedom ? No. Selfishness…..Yes.

  3. PsyclingLeft.Always 3

    "Bloxham’s been left sore and bruised from the incident and said his camera operator was extremely shaken.

    He told 1News police were nowhere to be seen while the incident took place."

    " https://www.1news.co.nz/2022/02/19/we-want-to-feel-safe-say-wellingtonians-whove-been-attacked-by-protesters/ "

    What the fuck ?! Anyone who still believe the peace and freedom lovin' protestor theme…is fooling themselves. (Not us ! )

    On the Police and anti vaxx…..


    And many on ONE Covid vaccine shot. Reluctantly ?

    • Belladonna 3.1

      So, what's the answer? Baton charges by the police – to clear the streets? Towing away vehicles (with the associated and spreading disruption caused by protesters sitting down in front of them – because they will)? Mass arrests – with police dragging away protesters (almost certainly not the most violent ones) – and where do you put them all?

      How about the government just being willing to talk to the protesters? Admitting and understanding that there are legitimate issues being raised. And being willing to work together to find some common ground. For heavens sake, even I would like to know the conditions under which the mandates will end – and I'm certainly not even protester-adjacent!

      Remove the underlying sensible core and the crazies are easier to deal with and far less bold.

      • Barfly 3.1.1

        BD please see the second tweet – there is no leadership available or coherence in their demands. I believe this is a different animal to the normal New Zealand protest/ occupation. I suspect there are guiding hands behind this – but that there ultimate goal is confrontation, violence and civil unrest.

        • Belladonna

          Maybe. But according to reports this morning, the protest has established security guards, and are influencing individual protestors to change their behaviour.
          2 examples: the shower tent next to the war memorial has been moved away; and the cars blocking the median lane have been either moved by their owners (or in 2 cases towed) away – with the security explaining why to the crowd (emergency vehicle access reasons).


          No protest has complete control over all of the people there – there are always associated people on the fringes.
          But it does seem as though some leadership is starting to coalesce.

          Surely talking to the more reasonable ones is a sensible beginning.

          • Shanreagh

            the shower tent next to the war memorial has been moved away;

            Well that's a little bit of gilding the lily. The protestors did not voluntarily move the tents, showers etc around the cenotaph, They were given a strict deadline by the vets organisation who were sick of the desecration. Then, and only then, did they move to do anything. This had been happening since 8/2 and on 19/2 they moved things.

            The other aspect with moving the cars near the station was not a happy clappy oh sorry folks situation. It was Police moving to take cars etc to free up access for emergency services. I think they informed the protestors what they were doing. These cars were not part of the original protest.

            • Belladonna

              While I'm sure the Veterans were incensed over the occupation of the Cenotaph – I don't see why you think that they would have any particular sway over the protesters. It was entirely voluntary. Prompted, no doubt by the coverage in the media and by statements from the Veterans – but no one made them shift the shower.

              And, all of the news reports I've seen say that the Police requested the protesters to remove their vehicles – and that this was supported and explained to the crowd by the protest security.

              If you have links to alternative sources supporting your interpretation, then it would be good to share them.

          • Andrew Miller

            This again.

            And when the ‘talking’ ends with “sorry but no, we’ll keep taking decisions we believe to be in the interests of the country” what then?

            What about the obviously significant portion that either aren’t interested in talking or who’s views are so extreme that no government would ever sit down with them?

            The idea that managing to separate the reasonable people and talking to them brings this to an end is utterly fanciful.

        • roblogic

          Exactly Barfly they want drama to reinforce their delusions of being “freedom fighters”. Some may have lost jobs or businesses due to the pandemic, but are too short sighted or stuck in conspiracy land to see that there is a global health emergency, not a left wing tyranny.

          • Belladonna

            I don't think that the protesters perceive this as a 'left-wing' tyranny. They perceive it as a government tyranny. And 'government' is not a respected or trusted word in their vocabulary.

            They don't see that any of the MPs are advocating for them – or even respecting them enough to even talk to them.

            They are being alienated even further by this approach.

            And, still waiting to hear what people actually think the government or police *should* do. All I'm hearing is why we should ignore them.

            They're not going away, folks. Ignoring them isn't the answer.

      • KJT 3.1.2

        I don't advocate going in batons drawn.

        But. Noting the degree of tolerance by the police of this bunch blatantly breaking both commonsense public health regulations and bylaws, compared with their treatment of previous protests.

        Even the students in Auckland, that peaceably blocked one lane of a road in Auckland not that long ago, were forcibly and quickly removed.

    • weka 3.2

      What the fuck ?! Anyone who still believe the peace and freedom lovin' protestor theme…is fooling themselves. (Not us ! )

      It's both and more. This is an opportunity to learn both/and instead of binary thinking. There are significant numbers of people there that want a peaceful protest. There are people there that want an insurrection. There are people not there who are manipulating all of that. Reducing it down to 'they're all violent' doesn't help.

  4. tsmithfield 4

    I think the issue for the government is that it looks like they are losing control of the situation. This, along with other issues such as lack of RAT tests etc, will continue to undermine public confidence that they know what they are doing.

    I think the reason that the government did well at the start of the pandemic is that they did appear to have the situation under control, especially when elimination was the strategy. This made people feel safer and more secure.

    However, I don't think this is the case now. So, the government needs to take some action now to exert control, rather than appear to be standing by idly watching what is going on.

    I think there are two options:

    Firstly, they could go down the Canadian route and impose emergency controls, let the police loose, and impose sanctions such as freezing bank accounts of protesters.




    I think this sort of move would be absolutely draconian, create lots of youtube videos of purported police violence, and set a troubling precedent for how our government might deal with other protests in the future; including protests that might be considered more acceptable here.

    But it would look as if the government were exerting control.

    The second option is that the government needs to start meaningful dialogue with the protesters. This would make the government look like the adults, and that they are doing something about resolving the situation.

    This is the option I would prefer.

    • Muttonbird 4.1

      Legitimising anti-vaxxers? That'll do more harm than good long term.

      • tsmithfield 4.1.1

        They aren't all anti-vaxxers though, are they?

        So, since you don’t like the second option, do you prefer the first option?

    • Shanreagh 4.2

      I think this sort of move would be absolutely draconian, create lots of youtube videos of purported police violence, and set a troubling precedent for how our government might deal with other protests in the future; including protests that might be considered more acceptable here.

      If you actually look at the footage from CBC you would be hard-pressed, so far, to be making any shock horror films from that. Police (1) knocking on the car window of Pat King asking him to get out and waiting until he had finished contacting his lawyer would make a riveting expose. Tamara Lich likewise. A co leader, can't find the name has been arrested, bailed and gone home and says the protest has had its day. One protestor had 3 windows broken in his car but is shown emerging eventually walking around and being handcuffed. The Police are using the push tactics to move protestors out of the intersections they have been controlling so cars and trucks can be moved..

      Apart from a shock horror of a mounted horse seemingly involved with a protestor that looked pretty bad there has been nothing really more than you would expect from a well controlled Police operation. The horse actually had a bicycle thrown under it. I have a low tolerance of people hurting horses and OTT Police actions but this did not seem like had any shock horror moments.

      Still more to come. It is a moving situation. The police being able to access and freeze bank accounts had an effect Some truckers have abandoned their trucks.

      Great concern about and for the children that have been deliberately brought to the site. Social workers and children's advocates have been brought to the site to help.



      So there is plenty to learn from the Police action in Canada. I understand, and may be wrong, that the NZ police could do most of the actions of their Canadian colleagues without having to invoke any special powers. That this is tactics on the ground, encircling, blocking access, setting up 100 police points (ie multiples of police in groups) around the perimeter. The freezing of the assets though, may have possibly limited the ability for truckers to immediately spring back.

      There were some quite large anti protesters groups who blocked certain streets to stop protesters moving about and this may have spurred the police on. Also anti protesters on bikes held up a convoy in BC (?) I think.

      Meantime, here in NZ the anti protest petition has reached 71,000.


      I have the feeling that perhaps in Canada having the emergency legislative powers even if they did not use them (apart from the bank accounts) has been a factor in clearing the protestors.

      The NZ PM has already said that the mandates would end once the need had gone. The Govt has precedent value in that it has said and done the same overseas travel, border etc issues.

      Perhaps a someone has suggested it could be a good idea to expand on what NZ would look like before Govt would remove these health protections. This could address point one of the protestors demands. Or set date in the future say July or October but have a commitment that is the NZ scene improves the dates may be earlier. The rest are incapable of action as many employers would have made a decision that having vaccinated staff was a H & S matter and a point of difference.

      Govt should not interfere with employers own decisions made in accordance with the law.

      • tsmithfield 4.2.1

        I think though, that considerable force would now be required to force protesters off because they are so entrenched now, and in such large numbers.

        I think I heard even Coster himself say the other day that kiwis wouldn't like the methods they would need to use.

        I also wonder if the police would even have sufficient resources, and may need to call in the army. If that were to take place, the optics of our army confronting protesters would be really bad.

        • Shanreagh

          Re Canada, I think it was initially the establishing of a hard perimeter that required the large numbers. Police inside this seem to be doing just as the Police tried to do here – that is pushing back to predetermined places and keeping the protestors there. This then enable the tow trucks to come in and move the trucks. I guess bit by bit they will contain them.

          I actually don't see bad optics if the hard police post/boundaries have the Army in them. Army could stay there while leaving the Police free to cope with the disorder. If the Army is static what is the harm? After all the military have been helping the Police at the MIQ places.

          The removing of the organisers did make the jobs easier. We have a hydra headed monster with the protest with no clear leader/s and this is deliberate. We also have unknown, at this stage, wealthy backers (?)

          There are some moves to investigate the suppliers to the protest so that boycott action can take place once the protest is over.

          There are groups being set up to help the powers that be return the areas to normal

          As soon as the protest is over I for one will be going back to the small businesses that have been affected.

          As I said below Matthew Tukaki has set up a peaceful online protest against the protest.

          With the petition it is closing on 75,000 signatures.

          Like racism I give nothing to this type of protest.


  5. Robert Guyton 5

    "Surely talking to the more reasonable ones is a sensible beginning."

    It appears the occupation is cleaning up its act.

    That's because they are at their ease, not actively attacking a police line, not being pressured, and the "hard core" are largely off-site, appearing at "satellite" protests, keeping the kettle boiling.

    When pressure from police (or the public) reoccurs, the "fringe" will reappear, more vehemently than before, and the barely-suppressed and easily triggered ill-will in the "peace & love" body of the crowd, will present itself. I imagine the police (rightly) see it this way.

    • Dennis Frank 5.1

      A classic self-organising system, Robert, in which order emerges naturally from chaos (as per Prigogine's 30-yr-old book). I particularly liked, on a whimsical note, the report of the herb garden being planted the other day. Hippies in that protest.

      • Robert Guyton 5.1.1


        Gimme a break!

        People planting herb gardens these days can't be accurately categorised as "hippies".

        One soul posted a photo of the "instant" raised-bed herb garden, calling it a food forest! I couldn't help but express my scepticism.

        It's not till it's close to home (ideologically) that we individually feel the vibe of the occupation 🙂

        • Dennis Frank

          smiley Fair enough. Current hippies seem more aspirational than real! However I like their attitude and determination to provide a positive alternative to the psychos & militants. Them food kitchens I saw featuring in recent news coverage prove that constructive behaviour is making the thing more coherent…

  6. Adrian Thornton 6

    The protests taking place in Wellington now are little more than a stark testament to the failure of the Progressive Left in NZ to offer a clear and cohesive counter narrative alternative to the Centre Neo Liberal (Labour) and Right Neo Liberal ideologies that have been dismantling the very foundations of social cohesion in this country for over 30 years now (the result correctly observed by Jenny how to get there in her comment).

    Though this being said, the Progressive Left fight an extremely unequal war in this battle of ideologies, because as we all know the establishment Liberal class and their media arm (represented in the media so clearly by RNZ) have shown they fear a cohesive and legitimate Left wing voice more than they fear the Right, the Right do what they do, which is their right.
    This outragous media bias has been shown to be the case in nearly all Western over the past decade, hence the similar undirected anger and protests witnessed in their countries over the past year or so.

    Turn Labour Left! (is that still even possible?)

    • KJT 6.1

      Largely agree about the effect of Neo-liberalism.

      However the loud "me, me and fuck everyone else" evidenced by the protesters, is an atitude the Neo-liberal paradigm, "there is no such thing as society" has fostered.

      You are repeating the meme that the protesters are ordinary "working people".

      They are mostly, not!

      At my workplace the protest has two supporters! out of several hundred, working class, who have been quietly getting on with the job and taking sensible precautions like vaccination and masking. Who don't want the risk of working closely with the unvaccinated and the stupid. Who mostly consider the protesters are a bunch of dangerous idiots.

  7. Adrian 7

    C’mon same name Adrian T, how the hell do you counter stupidity like “ Vaccines contain razor blades “ by being MORE left-wing. The Government Covid response is the most left-wing in the world, risking popularity by initiating responses to minimalise deaths and suffering in NZ.

  8. joe90 8

    No more government

    A mob with an intention to bring down an elected Government, huh.

    81Seditious offences defined

    • (1)A seditious intention is an intention—

      • (a)To bring into hatred or contempt, or to excite disaffection against, Her Majesty, or the Government of New Zealand, or the administration of justice; or
      • (b)To incite the public or any persons or any class of persons to attempt to procure otherwise than by lawful means the alteration of any matter affecting the Constitution, laws, or Government of New Zealand; or
      • (c)To incite, procure, or encourage violence, lawlessness, or disorder; or
      • (d)To incite, procure, or encourage the commission of any offence that is prejudicial to the public safety or to the maintenance of public order; or
      • (e)To excite such hostility or ill will between different classes of persons as may endanger the public safety.

      (2)Without limiting any other legal justification, excuse, or defence available to any person charged with any offence, it is hereby declared that no one shall be deemed to have a seditious intention only because he intends in good faith—

      • (a)To show that Her Majesty has been misled or mistaken in her measures; or
      • (b)To point out errors or defects in the Government or Constitution of New Zealand, or in the administration of justice; or to incite the public or any persons or any class of persons to attempt to procure by lawful means the alteration of any matter affecting the Constitution, laws, or Government of New Zealand; or
      • (c)To point out, with a view to their removal, matters producing or having a tendency to produce feelings of hostility or ill will between different classes of persons.

      (3)A seditious conspiracy is an agreement between 2 or more persons to carry into execution any seditious intention.

      (4)For the purposes of sections 83 to 85 of this Act,—

      To publish means to communicate to the public or to any person or persons, whether in writing, or orally, or by any representation, or by any means of reproduction whatsoever

      Statement includes words, writing, pictures, or any significant expression or representation whatsoever; and also includes any reproduction, by any means whatsoever, of any statement.


    • Rosemary McDonald 8.1

      (2)Without limiting any other legal justification, excuse, or defence available to any person charged with any offence, it is hereby declared that no one shall be deemed to have a seditious intention only because he intends in good faith—

      • (a)To show that Her Majesty has been misled or mistaken in her measures; or
      • (b)To point out errors or defects in the Government or Constitution of New Zealand, or in the administration of justice; or to incite the public or any persons or any class of persons to attempt to procure by lawful means the alteration of any matter affecting the Constitution, laws, or Government of New Zealand; or
      • (c)To point out, with a view to their removal, matters producing or having a tendency to produce feelings of hostility or ill will between different classes of persons.

      From speaking with other anti-mandate protestors over the past few weeks this exactly sums up what our intent is.


      Thanks for posting joe90.

    • McFlock 8.2

      I thought they'd repealed sedition, anyway? Guess not.

      er – seems they did.

      Didn’t know you could get old versions of acts on that site. Seems one can.

  9. tsmithfield 9

    A good article on this protest:

    "Even more remarkable was Ardern’s statement: “…it’s not the way we protest in New Zealand.”

    Well, prime minister, if you look out of your ninth floor window, you will see that is exactly how some people express their defiance in New Zealand.

    It is how the protest at Ihumātao was conducted, successfully, as you may recall. It is how the local Māori made their demands known at Moutoa Gardens in Wanganui for almost three months. The occupation of Bastion Point lasted for 18 months.

    What the prime minister meant, I suspect, is it isn’t how she and her cohort of performance revolutionaries choose to conduct themselves, where the object was to get the Instagram photo and move on somewhere comfortable for a soy latte and vegan muffin. Getting mud on your designer clothing was to be avoided and being arrested was definitely not on the cards. Thank you very much."



    • joe90 9.1

      Damien light-finger hits peak whataboutism; compares land disputes to the performative 'you're not the boss of me' antics of an amorphous, conspiratorial mob.

    • aom 9.2

      Please explain how at either Ihumātao or Bastion Point, the occupiers commandeered the equivalent of the Parliamentary precinct which is owned by NZ public, shut down a significant part of a CBD, physically threaten members of the public while they were going about their lawful business and in some cases, threatening livelihoods? Need one provide further examples of how the Wellington protest differs? Besides, the ownership of land at Bastion Point and Ihumātao was legitimately challenged, not purloined for political purposes.

      • tsmithfield 9.2.1

        The point being made, as I understand it, is that protest sometimes does involve occupation, and also can involve considerable cost and inconvenience to the protesters when it is around an issue that means a lot to them.

        Nothing to do with whether the reasons for this protest are valid or not.

      • aom 9.2.2

        Is it a good article on this protest if it mis-represents reality? It sticks out like dogsball's that you knew you were being disingenuous with your final "LOL".

    • Rosemary McDonald 10.1

      Oh very good.

      History, eh? Has a habit of coming back to bite one in the bum.

    • joe90 10.2

      Oh look, another crack-pot from the past wants in on the action.

      But I do wonder if she's had those holes in the ceiling fixed?


    • Dennis Frank 10.3

      Well my view of the left was formed when Che was their ubiquitous icon. In the half-century since, the left has seemed increasingly ephemeral. Whenever I challenge folks here to define it I get zero responses – from which I deduce that everyone feels incapable of rising to the challenge, then rationalises that feeling of uselessness by pretending there's no need to do so anyway.

      She fails to elucidate the situation & merely takes refuge in reminiscence. Is she even aware that the Occupy movement failed?? Those incapable of learning from history end up repeating it. Leftists can't advance their common cause via such failure.

      • The Chairman 10.3.1

        She fails to elucidate the situation & merely takes refuge in reminiscence.

        No. She was highlighting the current hypocrisy of some on the left.

        And did so rather well.

    • The Chairman 10.4

      Yes, very good indeed.

      Thanks for posting it, Cricklewood

      Looks like it hit a nerve with Joe.

  10. joe90 11

    It's almost like these antisocial arsewipes think they have license to do WTF they like.

  11. Muttonbird 12

    Te Rangikaiwhiria [email protected]_Taipo

    Replying to @Te_Taipo

    #convoynz2022 #Convoy2022NZ #Wellington I know this is hard for people to hear, but your govt is planning talks with protest representatives to come to a compromise. What is not on offer is the dismantling of the govt, so that leaves making a political call on mandates.

    Great, so the unvaxxed, anti-mask wearing idiots will be allowed back to workplaces to spread Coronavirus and pressure our health system, while the rest of us who have done the hard work fret about being pinged as close contacts in those same workplaces.

    Rewarding the crazed minority seems the wrong way to go.

  12. Nice peaceful people at the protest!

    And the ominous thing is a lot of moderates are being radicalised by the nutters!

  13. The Chairman 14

    Why has the Government not addressed the evidence below in a significant manner as in to put the matter to rest? Anybody seen any reports on this?

    New Zealand politicians and health officials were last month shown evidence that vials of the Pfizer “vaccines” being forced on Kiwis may contain complex “nanotechnology” — evidence met with silence from Ardern's government.

    Since mid-2021, New Zealand Doctors Speaking Out with Science (NZDSOS) has seen credible reports from scientists in Spain, Germany, Argentina and last week in the UK

    NZDSOS supplied this latest evidence to Medsafe, and also to members of the New Zealand Parliament Health Select Committee on Friday 28th January 2022.

    Of four separate approaches to Government, none yielded any significant response to the evidence presented…


    • observer 14.1

      I thought it wasn't about the vaccine?

      You gave the game away there.

      • The Chairman 14.1.1

        This is a sperate issue. Perhaps I should've posted it in open to save the confusion

        Nevertheless, it needs addressing.

        • Muttonbird

          Nano-razor blades, anyone?

          • Andrew Miller

            Nonotechnology, 5G, razor blades?

            I’ve been jabbed three times now dating back months, the most interesting outcome has been a mildly sore shoulder for a few hours.
            I feel seriously let down that I’ve been promised all this dramatic shit…nothing.

          • Shanreagh

            Magnets…..actually I found the magnets embarrassing at first with the ability to go into cafes and on my way out gather up the cutlery. I soon got used to it and then would exchange the cutlery for cash at the scrap metal dealers. So it was a bit of a win:win for me. Poor cafe owners though.

            Over the course of having the 2 injections my magnetic powers waned. I thought with the booster they would come back but I seem to have got a double lot of 5G access and the razor blades. As a female all these razor blades are of limited use and I have got a prehistoric phone so 5G not so useful either.

            As far as mRNA is concerned I look on it this way as was said during the GM free debate 'no toad genes in me'. I am pretty sure that the virus makers will have heeded my view and I will a different insect or animal or even a plant's genes. I am quite sure that they will have given me a plant gene in view of the all the plants people in my family. I suppose a cactus wouldn't be ideal but a violet could be good. Smell nice and wouldn't need to have showers should I join the protesters.

            • McFlock

              If you drink colloidal silver after getting the vaccine, you magnetically attract silverware. Much more profitable at the scrapyard.

              Just avoid taking ivermectin after the vaccine. You'll walk funny for days.

    • mpledger 14.2

      It must be incredibly cheap nanotechnology to give it to 100s of millions of people around the world.

      • The Chairman 14.2.1

        To give it…

        They're not giving it to us. We are paying for it.


        • Shanreagh

          I think you need to corral your arguments. Are we now down on firms that give us access to the vaccines……of course we have had to pay for them….NZ has also bought and paid for vaccine supplies for some of our Pacific neighbours and I thought that was great.

          Did you expect Pfizer to give it away?

          If so why?

          We pay ie the Govt does for meds Drs prescribe to patients.

          One of the arch fiends of the ant vaxx world ie Bill Gates has been instrumental in buying medicines where patents have expired but they are still in use & being manufactured, to third world countries. This apprently is very naughty of him and proof that he is keen on tracking the rest of us.

          • The Chairman

            Are we now down on firms that give us access to the vaccines

            Were we ever really big on big pharma?

            Did you expect Pfizer to give it away?

            Clearly, I was correcting mpledger's assertion.

            • Shanreagh

              I think you misread what he said……the emphasis was on the expense of also putting nano tech on day to day vaccines. Doing this, even it could have been done, would have put it well out reach of all but the most wealthy countries.

              NZ Govt paid and the consumers, us, paid nothing.

              NB It is typical anti vaxxer speak to have a big downer on big Pharma. it is part of their playlist and a not well thought out diversionary tactic. But as you are coming at an anti vaxx stance late……..

              Hopefully now you have got the info on the various anti vaxx claims you will provide us with a new one/s that we can all dissect.

              Many of us find vast amusement from them also mixed with sadness that somehow our own seem to have lost commonsense or the ability to see a con. I think after the dust has settled we could look at the school curriculum to make sure it gives our citizens financial literacy as well the ability to critically analyse.

              After all getting away with one's ability to recognise and question a con is at least as important to our people as the ability to recognise and question a financial scam.

    • Shanreagh 14.3

      The Chairman, are you serious? Really?

      These tropes/tripe about 'things' in the vaccines have been around for ever:


      Bill Gates tracker

      various chips to force people to do things (tied in with the Bill Gates tracker)

      nano tech to insert genes from other species

      mRNA converts our own genes so they are in readiness (tied in with the Bill Gates call to action eventually

      HIV being injected

      sharp things like razor blades

      I can't think of any more at the mo' but there are plenty. I am surpired you have not seen them on anti vaxx sites.

      In the few cases where there were stuff ups with the physical practice around injections this has been publicised very quickly, the people tracked down…..there have been a couple of cases where complete doses were not being given. vaccinators had founf they were able to give 13 doses and not 12 …then another person did not get a complete dose.

      On the other anti vaxxers did palce razor blades on the backs of thier posters with the aim of cutting those who tried to remove them


      The vaccines do not contain graphene


      re Moderna NB not Pfizer, where tiny pieces of stainless steel from the manufacturing process were found as black spots.


      Then I think the origin of your Doctors claim which is dubbed pants on fire from the Liar Lhttps://www.tampabay.com/news/health/2021/10/30/seven-spooky-things-people-say-are-in-the-covid-19-vaccines-but-definitely-arent/iar pants on fire


      All of these links and saying s are well documented on Google etc. I am surprised that you did not think to do some basic checking first.

    • The Unliving 14.4

      Is that a serious question? Should the Government be commenting on every unhinged conspiracy theory? They would be busy people, if so.

      Let's examine. From Prevention & Treatment, we can see the message of the good people at NZDSOS:

      1. Natural immunity works against Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19.
      2. Early treatment works against Covid-19.
      3. Think carefully about the benefits and risks of the Coivd-19 injections.

      Highly credible. They even misspelled COVID in point 3. Is there any evidence that Vitamin D, Ivermectin, and natural immunity are more effective than the vaccine? Think I'll stick with the vaccine in the meantime.

      That press release claims that the vaccine contains graphene-based technology. A claim debunked here:

      There is no evidence that the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine contains graphene. The only sample used in the study is of unknown origin and traceability. Lists of the vaccine’s ingredients released by Pfizer-BioNTech do not include graphene oxide. The analysis, done using electron microscopy, is also inconclusive.

      We even get this startling revelation (with no evidence):

      This apparent discovery of undisclosed materials resembling electronic components in New Zealand vaccine vials…

      The rest of their press release is literally full of low-rent conspiracy theories. And to top it off, their media contact is Graham somebody (no last name provided). Why don't you give him a call? I'm sure he'll be able straighten this whole mess out.

      • The Chairman 14.4.1

        Is that a serious question?

        Hell yes. If it is fake news, the spreading of it potentially increases hesitancy. If not, then it is also a serious problem. Thus, needs to be sufficiently addressed.

        Lists of the vaccine’s ingredients released by Pfizer-BioNTech do not include graphene oxide.

        There is an explanation debunking that fact check. Around 4.59 in on this clip linked below.


        Pattern link


        • McFlock

          If people are spreading fake news that the world is ruled by a cabal of lizard people, that's a serious problem. If the world really is ruled by lizard people, then that is also a serious problem. Thus, it needs to be sufficiently addressed.

          • The Unliving

            It's the cabal of shapeshifting lizard people you are thinking of. The regular lizard people work at the Reserve Bank, and some in Real Estate.

        • The Unliving

          Hell yes. If it is fake news, the spreading of it potentially increases hesitancy.

          NZDSOS quite clearly have some unusual beliefs regarding the practice of medicine. They are obviously trying to stoke vaccine hesitancy, if not outright anti-vax sentiment. Did you read the entire press release you linked to? The thing is completely unhinged.

          There is an explanation debunking that fact check. Around 4.59 in on this clip linked below.

          Debunking? Did that video look even remotely credible to you? At the 0:45 mark we have Karen Kingston, who worked at Pfizer from 1996 to 1998 in a marketing role, loosing the following on a breathless world:

          The purpose of them [the advanced technologies that are part of the vaccine] is to trace your social network and your activities, as well as deliver different drugs, genetics and immune modulating processes and stuff like that.

          Aside from the obvious absurdity of that claim, no mention is made of why a pharmaceutical company would want to trace your social network. How is that even remotely possible?

          That video is debunked by Reuters and Snopes.

          You asked why the Government have not addressed this. I would imagine the Government did not want to lend any credibility or authority to their claims: had they responded NZDSOS would not doubt have claimed some sort of victory, responded with more rubbish themselves, and the cycle continues.

        • Shanreagh

          But this is an old, old (in Covid 19 terms) conspiracy theory. I am not sure why you are treating it as if it is something new.

          The role of conspiracy theories, the Dirty Dozen and their spreading of dis- & mis- info goes back to the very earliest times that the vaccines were available These CT theories were so prevalent that there were moratoriums(?) on publishing them because of the impact on people who did not have critical analysis skills.

          Some MBs that I was involved with set internal rules that said no 'trafficking' in CTs. They felt they had a duty to ensure the wellbeing of the team of 5M and anti vaxx conspiracy theories worked against that. They could set these rules so they owned the MB space. Instantly this stopped the peddling of these theories and the likes of VFF and Liz Gunn et al in their tracks.

          From the https://covid19.govt.nz/


          The Pfizer vaccine contains:

          • messenger RNA encoding SARS-CoV-2 spike protein
          • lipid nanoparticle – a stabilised fat-based bubble to protect and carry the mRNA into our cells
          • salt buffers – to maintain the pH of the vaccine
          • sucrose – to protect the vaccine while in storage.

          The Pfizer vaccine does not contain:

          • animal products
          • antibiotics
          • blood products
          • DNA
          • egg proteins
          • fetal material
          • gluten
          • microchips
          • pork products
          • preservatives
          • soy
          • latex (the vial stopper is made with synthetic rubber – bromobutyl).

          I usually try to link to reputable sources and this is a useful guide as to what you might expect when you look at a source. It is a website that is called


          When you put Bitchute in to the search engine it comes back with

          • Overall, we rate BitChute extreme right and Questionable based on the promotion of conspiracy theories, propaganda, hate speech, poor sourcing, fake news, and a lack of transparency. This source is not credible for accurate information and may be offensive to some (most).


          I follow several sites overseas looking at conspiracy theories, not just about Covid 19. It is fair to say that the Bitchute site features in many of these.

          I am not sure why you are actually getting information from that source about a topic of such importance such as Covid.

          It calls into question the motives of why this is being brought up again now. It seems very strange to me that this type of CT is doing the rounds again. I can only assume that someone at the anti vax/mandate protest may be set on reviving it.

          I for one do not want to be involved in giving the slightest hint of veracity to these conspiracy theories by even discussing them in a forum that seeks for rational debate. There is plenty of information about these CTs out there but it is not likely to be found on the scam sites themselves.

  14. Reality 15

    The protesters have now set up a mobile shower on a bus stop. Where is the council? Would have thought it was illegal to park on a bus stop. Other people would be quickly ticketed/towed. Guess they are worried about all the smelly, sweaty protesters but not worried about the welfare of local residents.

    • Andrew Miller 15.1

      “My rights, my body, everybody else’s right can go ….themselves” apparently.

    • Belladonna 15.2

      If you're occupying Parliament grounds, why would you worry about occupying a bus stop? Especially since all the roads are blocked, so there are no bus services.

      Seems like a fairly petty issue to raise.

      I'm sure the residents (in their multi-million apartment complexes) are much more concerned about the blocked streets than the shower in the bus stop….

  15. tsmithfield 16

    Buckle up everyone. We could soon have some nasty conflict on our hands, as the police seem to be angling for a state of emergency to be called so they can be more effective with respect to the protest.


    • Andrew Miller 16.1

      Feels like arse covering at this point.
      I’d love to see a serious exploration of the law, but feels unlikely to me that I could rock up somewhere I’m not allowed to camp, be trespassed and the police have no legal power to remove me so look as I claim it’s a protest unless they’re granted emergency powers.

      • Shanreagh 16.1.1

        Yes some commentators in the Canada situation are saying that the only Emergency power that had an effect was the ability to access and freeze bank accounts. The rest of the work to remove protestors was/is being carried following usual best practice to remove crowds of people. We have seen the pushing back and the Canadian police seem to used that to push back protestors from intersections.

        I think the freezing of the bank accounts had a profound effect.

        if we had the Canadian practice without the emergency powers that froze the bank accounts, would it work?

        Not keen on Emergency powers if it can be done without them. But maybe we do need to cut off the supply of $$$.

        Meantime the petition has reached 78158 against the protest.

      • Shanreagh 16.1.2

        Yes I think that usual police tactics could be used…the Canadian ones seem effective with the 100 groups of Police around the perimeter and the gradual push from the police within the perimeter to clear intersections etc.

        But it is a difficult place for the police to be…..no protest leadership, crazy demands, continued funding coming from somewhere and just general looniness and people becoming radicalised.

        But really I don't know. The Canadian protest does not seemed to have won over the hearts and minds of Canadians though Canadians like us will be glad when health precautions are not needed. They are further through the Omicron outbreak whereas ours has just started.

  16. observer 17

    If you're angry about the Covid restrictions in NZ, you are not alone. Well, not quite.

    12% feel the same way.

    All the polling evidence points the same way: even if we take the protesters' complaints at face value, they are easily outvoted by the majority.

    • Dennis Frank 17.1

      4-11th February 2022 the Ipsos Mind and Mood of New Zealanders: The Arrival of Omicron asked 1,004 New Zealanders how they are feeling about the virus now the Omicron variant is transmitting in the community, including how well New Zealand is managing the outbreak.

      Good sample size. Govt strategy still had solid support as of a couple of weeks ago.

      – Nearly two-thirds of New Zealanders would like to see restrictions on how businesses operate removed.

      – Ratings of Government performance in managing the virus has dropped to 63% positive after consistently being in the 80s and 90s over the last 2 years.

      Interesting that the same proportion disagree re business!

      • observer 17.1.1

        It's a Goldilocks result. Half happy with current settings, a quarter want looser, a quarter want tighter.

        Any government would bite your hand off for that level of support in normal times, never mind such challenging ones as these.

        All the armchair reckons of commentators and echo chamber fantasies don't amount to a measure of public opinion. This is.

      • Andrew Miller 17.1.2

        You’d need more context as to why, when and under what circumstances.
        A question that asked “If there was clear evidence that it was likely to see an increase in cases of Omicron would you still like to see the removal of restrictions on business” might have got a quite different result.

        But Observer is right, it was inevitable that public opinion was going to become more polarised over time.
        That result does show there’s no policy the government could enact that would see the sort of overwhelming support they got 18mths ago.

        • Dennis Frank

          I agree re question-framing & with Observer re a Goldilocks result. The poll was taken before any impact of the protest affected public opinion, so we have to wait for the next poll to see how much affect that has (if any).

          The symmetry of the poll was quite impressive actually. Labour deserves credit for representing the electorate accurately!

          I suspect the omicron exponential take-off may firm up Labour support. Could be that the protest has no discernible effect on public opinion but it would be extremely interesting if a poll included a question to elicit & measure it.

  17. joe90 18

    Remember when it was metadata this, metadata that?

    A nine digit number
    For every living soul

    That is all they talk about
    At Data Control
    They know everything about you
    Keeping secrets is too hard
    Your life is all recorded for you

    Data Control – Hüsker Dü

    • Andrew Miller 18.1

      History is unlikely to view Bob Mould’s early political songs as his finest work.

      I do have a soft spot for ‘In a free land’ though.

  18. vto 19

    The Christchurch protest in Cranmer Square is small and quiet….

    With two lanes of constant non-protesters driving past on busy Montreal St going about their Sunday lives…

    …. with not a toot in support

    nor nary a glance or a smile

    … just grimaces ..

    …. the protesters demonstrably outnumbered in front of their eyes ..

    .. quiet and sober

    .. a completely different scene to wellington

  19. Here is another normal person enjoying the atmosphere down at the protest.


    Looks like that they have got the old meme up that National Socialism because it has the word 'socialism' in the title is like socialism and therefore PM Ardern is like Hitler.

    Nazism, also spelled Naziism, in full National Socialism, German Nationalsozialismus, totalitarian movement led by Adolf Hitler as head of the Nazi Party in Germany. In its intense nationalism, mass appeal, and dictatorial rule, Nazism shared many elements with Italian fascism.


    Fascism a form of far-right, authoritarian ultranationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, and strong regimentation of society and the economy that rose to prominence in early 20th-century Europe.

    Both wiki links.

    So a free lesson in incorrect history as well as the chance of meeting this guy above.

    • Shanreagh 20.1

      I am sure that those with a mind and a concern about the people they are sharing a protest with, will be pouring out of the grounds any minute now joining the ones who left when this chap Richard Sivell arrived

    • Andrew Miller 20.2

      Yes, Hitler was a socialist which is why the SDP was banned and it members sent to camps…oh hang on…

    • PsyclingLeft.Always 20.3

      Shanreagh and Andrew Miller…..Yep. Apparently its all Nuance…or something. I'll call fascists and their minimisers out whenever and wherever. Keep up your posts.

  20. McFlock 21

    lol, fair point.

    If the "protest" has so little leadership is can't clean up the streets, then who the fuck is the government supposed to negotiate with?

    • observer 21.1

      That statement shows how absurd it is to keep saying that all we need is for the government to "engage".

      You couldn't make this up … from their statement:

      “The mood of many highly disaffected protestors would improve dramatically were the Police to agree to drop all charges.”

      Oh, does their mood need improving? Poor dears.

      No police commissioner and no elected government could survive if they did that. These people do not live in the real world and we should stop pretending they do.

    • joe90 21.2


      • observer 21.2.1

        We've seen this movie before:

        "The only people we hate more than the Romans are the fucking Judean People's Front."

        "And the Judean Popular People's Front."


        "And the People's Front of Judea."

        "What? We're the People's Front of Judea!"

        "Oh. I thought we were the Popular Front."

        "Whatever happened to the Popular Front?"

        "He's over there."

  21. Belladonna 22

    Police Commissioner hinting at wanting state-of-emergency powers to deal with the protest.


    Claims that the police have no legal basis to restrict access to the site (which is untrue – police regularly set up barriers and restrict access for a whole variety of reasons); that they don't have the power to stop protesters bringing in and setting up tents (which will be news to all the freedom campers moved on by police).

    It's unclear from the report just what he thinks he would be able to do under 'emergency powers' that he can't (or won't) do now.

    To me, this is just another excuse from him, for his lack of effectualness (if that's a word!). 'The Government wouldn't give me emergency powers, so this is all their fault.'


    • Dennis Frank 22.1

      I don't read it same as you; don't think he was hinting. Just pointing to a scenario in which an emergency could be declared. The barbarians are at the gates of the citadel but it's only an emergency if they storm those gates.

      After seeing his interview with Jack Tame I've decided the guy has more credibility than I thought so am now giving him the benefit of the doubt. I agree with you re restricting access but suspect Labour has agreed to tolerate the protest. Media questioning of the police minister could elucidate that but she's too elusive for them.

      To clarify that point I can only add that govt lack of transparency is clearly deliberate. You could prove me wrong by specifying any official statement from them after they authorised the police to remove the protest. I haven't noticed any. So Coster's tolerance of the protest can be taken as evidence of Labour's tolerance of the protest unless/until Labour informs us to the contrary…

  22. Cricklewood 23

    Right back home after what was a really enjoyable weekend. Will likely go back. Some thoughts in no particular order.

    Had a really good time the atmosphere was really good people were very friendly.

    Theres no way the police will walk into this with batons etc to clear it, after dark they'll occasionally chat with the crowd some are sympathetic.

    That and the kids I stopped count at 100 in the line for candy floss. Theres way more than that from 3 months old to teenagers. Going in with riot gear would be horrific, if a baby/child was badly hurt or worse theres not much coming back from that.

    Lots of people have been hurt by the economy housing costs etc and mandates have been the straw that's broken them.

    There's zero trust left in politicians and media, partially due to the PMs comments around no compulsory vax and no punishment if you dont. Media calling those that were suggesting that it was a conspiracy theory hasnt helped.

    Some have nowhere else to go, everything they own is in a vehicle in Welly.

    There are some way out there conspiracy theorists with extreme views present, qanon followers.

    It's a little worrying that we've delivered a bunch of disaffected people who are struggling to understand why theyve been treated in the way they have for refusing medical treatment and are now essentially recruits for the above.

    Didn't find any actual Nazis.

    Got a really good explanation and a for myself far better understanding of Maori land issues from a Kaumatua from up North. He was there for his mokopuna, affected by mandates and housing costs.

    The above makes me think the msm do the country no favours in its coverage. When you talk to someone face to face you get a much better understanding.

    I'm glad Coster is in charge, he's coping flack but he's making the right calls imho.

    Lastly, this is a huge mess and I really dont know how its going to be fixed without a social disasters unfolding. I'm firmly of the opinion that mandates need to be unwound asap, the damage is now getting to the point where its permanent.

  23. observer 24

    More self-delusion from the above statement:

    "In any normal situation like this, the Opposition would read the room and pivot. But by joining the cross-party agreement to not engage with the protesters, they have shown themselves to be gutless and incapable of representing the interests and concerns of the New Zealand public. .. Luxon's strong support for mandates … will be remembered at the next election". (my italics)

    So they're going to give Jacinda a 3rd term?

    How are they going to punish Luxon? By voting ACT, who will support Luxon (or lose Epsom)? By voting for fringe parties like New Conservatives or Tamaki's lot or this new Matt King party?

    Waste 2-3% on the far right, sounds good.

    • Peter 24.1

      Oh God. They're pissed off within politicians and the media so they're going to install a King and a Bishop? Pawns.

  24. McFlock 25

    Stuff reporting that police have been instructed to actually enforce the law:

    Police staff have been instructed to take a zero-tolerance approach to any abuse, intimidation, or violence against members of the public. Anyone abusing or intimidating members of the public should expect to be arrested, removed and face charges.

    We'll see.

  25. Robert Guyton 26

    "“The mood of many highly disaffected protestors would improve dramatically were the Police to agree to drop all charges.”"

    From a media statement from the “combined protest groups” sent out at 5.15pm on Sunday.


    • weka 26.1

      now they're just taking the piss.

      Full quote,

      A media statement from the “combined protest groups” sent out at 5.15pm on Sunday said: “At all costs, we must avoid the situation at Parliament Grounds last week, which saw 122 people arrested and many more hurt.”

      “Despite formally requesting a meeting over a week ago, and then us putting forward a highly skilled mediator five days ago, the Government still refuses to engage with us,” it reads.

      While the protest had been “largely peaceful … it could also have gone the other way altogether”.

      “The mood of many highly disaffected protestors would improve dramatically were the Police to agree to drop all charges.”

      Translation: if the police try and do anything we will harm people and damage property. If the police lessen their power, we might not riot.

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