Daily Review 27/05/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:05 pm, May 27th, 2016 - 49 comments
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New Zealand clean green money laundering

Daily review is also your post.

This provides Standarnistas the opportunity to review events of the day.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Don’t forget to be kind to each other …

49 comments on “Daily Review 27/05/2016”

  1. Sabine 1

    someone mentioned the influence yesterday

    today then this

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2016/05/26/the-superbug-that-doctors-have-been-dreading-just-reached-the-u-s/

    Quote: ” For the first time, researchers have found a person in the United States carrying bacteria resistant to antibiotic of last resort, an alarming development that the top U.S. public health official says could signal “the end of the road” for antibiotics.

    The antibiotic-resistant strain was found last month in the urine of a 49-year-old Pennsylvania woman.”Quote End

    fun times ahead

    • weka 1.1

      The really appalling thing is that we’ve seen that coming for decades. For a long time the response from the Science as God people was that new antibiotics would be developped, as if that meant there wasn’t a problem with the way we were using them because hey presto there will always be another one. It’s similar to the argument that we can keep using fossil fuels, because someone will invent carbon capture and storage or free energy or something. The common denominator here is the underlying world view.

      One thing to bear in mind with the end of the age of antibiotics is that many plant medicines are just as effective. There are limits to that (because we live in the natural world), and I think the biggest challenges will be in use like during surgery. If we had been in any way intelligent we would have been keeping antibiotics for serious level use and using plant medicines for every day use (and not using antibiotics to make animals grow better so we can eat them ffs).

      Plant medicines are not being seriously enough researched because you can’t patent them and it’s too hard for big pharma to make shit loads of money. We could enable companies to do the research that want to simply make a living instead. Or we could just start working off the knowledge base we already have. We already know a pretty large range of plants and what microbes they are effective against and how to use them in the human body. But our ignorance around this culturally is huge. Cue a whole bunch of strawman arguments about charlatans, faith healing and woowoo.

      • Sabine 1.1.1

        it is true that the writing has been on the wall for a time. I was always good in avoiding antibiotics by simply not taking them. The only time i did was when i had blood poisoning a few years ago.

        i tend to ‘heal’ myself with certain foods, plants, spices and the likes, and for most time its enough to get over that cold, that upset tummy etc.
        Never had the flue, so i can’t really comment on that – never had a flue vaccine either.
        I don’t consider myself a militant anti science dude, it is just that with flue vaccine i don’t see the reason for most of the times. It always seemed that the ones that got the office vaccine were the ones keeping the office sick.

        But yes, when this takes hold, the flue season will be something else. As for surgery. Oh my. Sorry for the rambling, but yes it will be wise to sign up to the local herb and foraged plant groups. There are many good groups in NZ, including the many Maori Healers and Foragers, so in way the knowledge is there, its up to us to learn and to apply it.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2

        For a long time the response from the Science as God people was that new antibiotics would be developped, as if that meant there wasn’t a problem with the way we were using them because hey presto there will always be another one.

        But you’ll note that it wasn’t the scientists who have actually been warning that this was going to happen for, as you say, decades. So, why did antibiotics get so routinely prescribed?

        Plant medicines are not being seriously enough researched because you can’t patent them and it’s too hard for big pharma to make shit loads of money.

        Actually, plant medicines are being heavily researched and patented. I heard a few years ago that pharmaceutical companies were getting ready to patent huge amounts of drugs based upon marijuana – just as soon as the governments got around to legalising it. Shouldn’t be allowed as it’s a discovery and not an invention but that doesn’t appear to have stopped patents on other biologic medicines.

        They’ve been making drugs from plants for decades and basing the start of their research upon folklore (which, of course, they never paid for).

        We could enable companies to do the research that want to simply make a living instead.

        Better idea to make it state funded research with the state then owning any IP that comes out of it and being the manufacturer. Private companies would still be able to make a profit on the research but they wouldn’t make any on sales. And they’d be competing with highly efficient government research institutions that don’t have to make a profit.

        • Jenny Kirk 1.1.2.1

          Apparently, farmers use antibiotics a lot – too much – and this is a major part of the problem. They’ve overdosed their animals, and this somehow gets into the human system which is then overloaded with antibiotics – making them less resistant .

          And the 1918 flu epidemic – Maori herbal lore didn’t save people from that – or did they not use their own herbal remedies in those days ?

          • greywarshark 1.1.2.1.1

            But Maori herbal remedies would have been tested and tried on themselves and their past diseases. The flus etc around 1918 that were introduced into a culture with no experience of them. They were a shock to the peoples’ systems literally. They could devastate and kill quickly.

            USA farmers have been using antibiotics since 1958 according to an article I have in m Popular Mechanics of that year.

              • greywarshark

                Thanks for that Pat. Sue Kedgley is a valuable politician, pressing forward the important issues to us with facts to support assertions or background to illustrate points.

                And the farmer use of antibiotics, despite knowing how it can damage our health defences, (or remaining determinedly ignorant) and how it can get into the polluted waterways affecting fish and other living things in ways we don’t understand, reveals Federated Farmers actually as a sort of terrorist organisation practising subversion against the country and its citizens, and with a stupid, bovine or bird-brained lack of concern for themselves, their families, and their own members also.

                The farming community, their advisors and other fellow-travellers, are going to suffer the problems of ineffectiveness of antibiotics along with the rest of us. But the farming money machine using whatever neo-lib fuel is expedient, must roll on and over us if we are unfortunate enough to be in its way.
                edited

          • weka 1.1.2.1.2

            As Grey said, it was different for Māori because historically influenza wasn’t an illness they had experienced. I’m not sure whether by 1918 that was less of an issue than in the 1800s.

            However, there was herbal treatment used successfully by doctors in the pandemic in the US and Europe.

            • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2.1.2.1

              However, there was herbal treatment used successfully by doctors in the pandemic in the US and Europe.

              [citation needed]

              • Colonial Viper

                yep while a large proportion of patients under medical care died in that US epidemic, reportedly very few under chiropractic care did.

                • greywarshark

                  Colonial Viper
                  I thought, from an ordinary citizen’s partial knowledge, that chiropractric care related to the body’s skeleton. How could that help people stricken with ‘flu.

              • weka

                From memory most of it comes from doctors’ records of the time. I’ll have a look tomorrow.

            • dukeofurl 1.1.2.1.2.2

              the same with people who werent used to pigs as farm animals.

              Almost all flu diseases come from pigs, which is why it was unknown in the americas and islands of the pacific till Europeans arrived.

            • AB 1.1.2.1.2.3

              Bacteria will develop resistance to herbal treatments too. It is in the nature of bacteria to do that because they reproduce so fast. In effect evolution is speeded up.
              There are many reasons to dislike and distrust the pharma industry, but some of their products including antibacterials have been very effective. My father who was a paediatrician and is now in his 90’s recalls the spectacular difference penicillin made after WW2. Children no longer died from simple infections.

              • weka

                I completely agree. The issue isn’t that pharmaceuticals are bad, it’s that we have wasted antibiotics. And the reasons we have done that are to do with world views and bias. Imagine if we had kept antibiotics for the emergencies (surgery, where someone might die or end up with permanent illness etc) and used other modalities to treat the things that weren’t so urgent. The over prescribing of antibiotics that has led to multiple resistances is completely on scientists, doctors, public health officials and pharmaceutical companies.

                (btw, nothing I have said in this conversation or anywhere on ts about this is me saying that herbs are good, drugs are bad. So you might want to ask yourself why you have brought that issue up. Because too often there is a reaction against so called alternative medicine as if we can only have one or the other. That’s the problem IMO and it’s frustrating in these conversations for the lines to get divided in that way. I’m arguing for us to use both).

                “Bacteria will develop resistance to herbal treatments too. It is in the nature of bacteria to do that because they reproduce so fast. In effect evolution is speeded up.”

                I’m not sure about that. I haven’t been able to find anything that suggests that bacteria develop resistance to plant medicines, but it could be that we just haven’t overused them and so it’s not obvious yet. I do think the theory that plants are very complex and therefore it’s harder for bacteria to develop resistance to them is sound, but it’s possible that it is happening just much more slowly than with antibiotics. If it is happening, then we has better make damn sure we don’t waste plant medicines in the way we have antibiotics, because then there probably really is nothing left with which to treat bacterial infections.

                If bacteria develop resistance to plants why are plants still effective against them given plants and bacteria have been co-evolving for much much longer than humans have been around, and bacteria evolve much much faster than plants?

                • AB

                  Well I’m no microbiologist or pharmacologist, but I expect resistance develops in some sort of proportion to the level of exposure.
                  So if a medicine is frequently exposed to a particular bacteria it makes it more likely that mutations in that bacteria which show resistance, and are favoured in an evolutionary sense, will develop.
                  It could be that plant-based medicines are more complex and resistance happens more slowly. I don’t know, but would certainly hope this is the case.
                  I have absolutely no problem with natural medicines but also think we should be evidence-based as far as possible. And yes I know that the pharma industry in cahoots with the publishing industry has ways of skewing the evidence. However that does not mean there is no such thing as evidence.
                  I expect we largely agree Weka. I brought this up because I always feel we need to avoid giving the impression that being ‘left’ involves a rejection of modernity and hankers after a pastoral, idyllic past that never really existed.

                  • weka

                    Thanks AB. I agree about evidence. It drives me just as crazy talking to alternative types who don’t have very good skills on assessing evidence and are unaware of that. But they’re not that different to the people who insist that the only valid way to understand a medicine if via RCTs. Both groups are arguing from lack of education and from ideological bias, and both groups have limited understandings about useful ways to observe and learn about the world.

                    “I brought this up because I always feel we need to avoid giving the impression that being ‘left’ involves a rejection of modernity and hankers after a pastoral, idyllic past that never really existed.”

                    Fair enough. And if I was in an alternative forum I’d be arguing for evidence based knowledge. Likewise, the idea that our pre-mordern past was nasty brutish and short and everyone who got a bacterial infection died because we had no way of treating them is just plain factually wrong.

          • b waghorn 1.1.2.1.3

            Sheep and beef farmers in nz very really uses antibiotics.

          • AmaKiwi 1.1.2.1.4

            @ Jenny Kirk

            “Apparently, farmers use antibiotics a lot”

            For your information, in the USA 80% of antibiotics (by weight) are used by farmers!

            These are the same thieves who wrote the TTPA.

            • b waghorn 1.1.2.1.4.1

              Yep its a god reason to make factory farming illegal.

              • weka

                Pretty much. It’s the chickens and pigs in NZ that are being dosed up I think. I woudn’t be surprised if dairy cows are too.

                We also need to guard against more development of feedlot farming in NZ.

        • weka 1.1.2.2

          “But you’ll note that it wasn’t the scientists who have actually been warning that this was going to happen for, as you say, decades.”

          Yes and no. Scientists have certainly known. It’s the same with a lot of science, the people that speak out against the status quo get marginalised for a long time until the issues get’s aired somewhere else and becomes acceptable. Same thing has happened with the fat hypothesis. Research scientists have been speaking out, and been ignored. Their research got picked up by the alternative subcultures and a few science journalists. Later there was another wave of bigger publicity as the paleo movement grew and eventually the issue ends up on the cover of Time decades after it was first being talked about. There is a pretty serious problem with science there, we often don’t have time for the normal processes to work.

          “So, why did antibiotics get so routinely prescribed?”

          I’ve seen doctors say that they’ve prescribed because their patients insisted, including prescribing for viral infections where antibiotics are useless. I think what this means is that patient arrives desperate and the GP has nothing else to offer and so gives them antibiotics. This is why the ignoring of herbal antibiotics borders on the criminal.

          “Actually, plant medicines are being heavily researched and patented.”

          You can’t patent a plant medicine like that. If you develop it into a drug you can, but you can’t take something like garlic and patent it and sell it as an antibiotic because it’s not legally possible to do so.

          Drugs and plant medicines aren’t the same thing, even where drugs are derived from plants. The reason that plant medicines don’t prompt antibiotic resistance (at least not so far) is because plants are made up of a huge number of complex components whereas antibiotics are relatively simple compounds. It’s that simplicity that enables bacteria to develop resistance, and it’s the complexity in plants that prevents this from happening.

          Good idea about companies being able to do business from the research side but not the sales side. Can’t really do that for herbs though. Is the garlic in the supermarket a medicine or not?

          • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2.2.1

            It’s that simplicity that enables bacteria to develop resistance, and it’s the complexity in plants that prevents this from happening.

            [citation needed]

            Can’t really do that for herbs though.

            But you do need to prove its efficacy and I’m not really seeing a lot of that around the claims of herbal medicines. And, yes, I’m quite aware of the anti-bacterial properties of garlic.

            • weka 1.1.2.2.1.1

              “But you do need to prove its efficacy and I’m not really seeing a lot of that around the claims of herbal medicines.”

              As I said, in terms of mainstream Western understanding the serious research isn’t being done to enable GPs etc to start using plant medicines as alternatives to antibiotics. There’s been a heap of in vitro work done, so whe know which plants work on which bacteria. There’s also huge amounts of clinical experience from practicing herbalists across many cultures. For those of us interested in what works, that’s enough. For the people that want hard data, that experience can be used to inform which research needs to be done, but like I said, it’s not patentable so big pharma won’t touch it. There are also some clinical studies that support the clinical usages.

              “It’s that simplicity that enables bacteria to develop resistance, and it’s the complexity in plants that prevents this from happening.

              [citation needed]”

              I doubt that I could cite that in a way that you would be satisfied with. We do know that simple antibiotics prompt resistance and that plants, which are complex, don’t. There may be another explanation for that rather than the one I gave, but I can’t think what it might be. But let’s call it a theory in the meantime, but one that makes enough sense to investigate. As I understand it the theory comes from understandings in biology about how bacteria develop resistance, and how plants protect themselves from microbes.

              • Draco T Bastard

                There’s been a heap of in vitro work done, so whe know which plants work on which bacteria.

                So you can link to this research and it’s peer-review?

                I doubt that I could cite that in a way that you would be satisfied with.

                So, basically, you’re talking out your arse.

                There’s also huge amounts of clinical experience from practicing herbalists across many cultures.

                See, this is what we call anecdote and it’s not good enough to base sound judgement on. We need controlled trials to test to see if the plant based medicines are doing what the herbalists are saying that they’re doing.

                Big Pharma may not be touching this because they can’t patent it but why aren’t the herbalists? I suspect that the answer is because they don’t have the knowledge and equipment to do that sort of testing.

                • Richard Christie

                  I suspect that the answer is because they don’t have the knowledge and equipment to do that sort of testing.

                  I suspect it’s because most of the efficacy claims made by the (big money) alternative medicine industry are simply not supported by evidence.

                • weka

                  Draco, I’m just going to pull some random stuff of Pubmed to get you started, but really it’s not in dispute at all that many plants demonstrate antibacterial activity in vitro. It’s fine that you are not aware of that, but I would encourage you to do some reading with an open mind i.e. go and look for the good research yourself, it’s there. I don’t have the time to do this and I don’t keep anything to hand easily because it’s such a commonly accepted thing now.

                  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26142503

                  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24635487

                  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/?term=manuka

                  “So, basically, you’re talking out your arse.”

                  No, I’m side stepping a long boring argument with someone who is ignorant about what plants actually do and who brings in a lot of beliefs based on theoretical understandings without a lot of experience or knowledge of what happens in the world. Hence,

                  “There’s also huge amounts of clinical experience from practicing herbalists across many cultures.”

                  See, this is what we call anecdote and it’s not good enough to base sound judgement on. We need controlled trials to test to see if the plant based medicines are doing what the herbalists are saying that they’re doing.

                  Believing that RCTs are the only valid way to build knowledge or the only valid knowledge base to make decisions from is an ideological position. GPs routinely use empirical evidence gained from their practice to inform how they treat their patients. Behind all the RCTs is a huge amount of actual real world experience. RCTs are one of the end points of that process, not the be all and end all. And researchers conducting RCTs don’t pull their hypotheses out of thin air, they have starting points in the real world.

                  Herbalists and their patients don’t need RCTs in the way you do, because there are other ways of assessing efficacy, and those ways are already in use.

                  I do think that better research would be great, but ironically it’s the very attitudes you are displaying here that are preventing that from happening.

                  We are approaching a huge health crisis with the coming of the end of the age of antibiotics. Why would we not look at all the tools we have?

                  Both you and Richard are pretty ignorant of what is already accepted in the mainstream science communities about herbal medicine. Both appear to be arguing from prejudice based on that ignorance. That’s up to you, it’s not my job to try and educate you. I’m not that interested in engaging with someone who will write off thousands of years of empirical evidence, observation and case studies as anecdote (hint, anecdote isn’t what you think it is), because you don’t understand the value of that and see things so narrowly in terms of RCTs. Yes, if we want to find other ways of responding to bacterial infection without antibiotics more research will have to be done. But that doesn’t mean we know nothing, and writing off what we do know out of ignorance and prejudice is hardly useful (not aligned with good science).

                  Big Pharma may not be touching this because they can’t patent it but why aren’t the herbalists? I suspect that the answer is because they don’t have the knowledge and equipment to do that sort of testing.

                  Yes, and it’s too expensive, and the ones that would be interested are blocked because of bias and commercial agendas. It’s a real thing that you can’t patent plants, so stop and consider how much money would be lost if medical people were using relatively cheap to produce plant medicines to treat routine bacterial infections instead of big pharma drugs? The politics in this a significant factor.

                  Herbalists in general don’t need RCTs because they already have coherent, reliable, safe and effective ways of treating people. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do further research. It would be great to get more studies done so that GPs would stop overprescribing antibtioics. But that’s not a problem for herbalists, that’s a problem for GPs and people who are resistant to looking at what works.

                • weka

                  I’ll add something else here, which is that plants aren’t just antibacterial, many also have direct effect on the immune system. So when herbalists are treating someone with a bacterial infection, they’re not using a single compound silver bullet approach to target a pathogen. There is much more going on. I say this because it’s a key part of why plants are effective, and it also means that studies need to be designed to take that into account once you get to the in vivo level. In other words, drugs and plant medicines are different things (which is good) and that needs to be taken into account when considering their various uses.

                  • dukeofurl

                    You are talking complete scientific mumbo jumbo.

                    Why dont you just say its a faith based healing , that any scientific analysis doesnt come close to anything that is accepted by wider medical community.

                    • weka

                      Because it’s not. You’re a pig ignorant person who can’t even formulate a decent argument. Look at the links above. Plants have antibiotic properties. Take your prejudice and ignorance elsewhere, I can’t be bothered with this low level debate.

  2. Venezia 2

    There have been contradictory statements reported by the media as to who is eligible for the $5000 to relocate from AKL, who gets how much etc. Paula benefit on one occasion said she hoped retired couples in existing state housing would take it up. She also said it would depend on the circumstances how much would be given eg if it was a family, where they were relocating. So sounds like WINZ already have criteria and this just adds on. or they are making it up as they go. One AKL guy interviewed said he went to WINZ to enquire about relocating and they didnt seem to know anything about it!

    • Muttonbird 2.1

      The Nats only speak in dollars. It’s gross. Every utterance is couched in cash terms because that is the only language their voters understand and that is the only language they believe anyone understands.

      They do not speak the language of stable communities, of secure families, and of the future of such things.

      This policy is the clumsiest I’ve seen from them, but they do not care and I think it is because they do not care about the future. Every decision they make is narrow, and focussed on the short term…

      • Expat 2.1.1

        Muttonbird

        And this style of management of NZ has been going on for 8 years, the race to the bottom.

      • Sabine 2.1.2

        transient people don’t vote, heck they don’t even go on the electoral role, considering that they don’t know where they are going to live the next 6 month or two weeks from now.

        now that is convenient, innit? Have a million plus essentially living in their cars/vans/friends couches and forget about them.

        NZ is a country run by greedy fucks and supported by greedy fucks. Me first. That would be the appropriate Name for their party.

  3. Expat 3

    The latest channel 7 news reach poll has Labour 52 and Liberals 48, only 6 weeks out from the election, Shorten is actually doing a pretty good job, Labour wants to spend $50B on Australia (health, education) and Turnball wants to spend the same $50B on TAX cuts for corporations, saying that there will be “trickle down”.

      • Expat 3.1.1

        Pat

        So far, the environment is not a main stream issue, but It will become one, the current policy of paying the biggest polluters $4B a year as an enticement to reduce emissions is little more than a joke, I saw Turnbull and Key in Paris and they were both on the outer, Key was particularly unhappy.

        The Great Barrier Reefs problems also stem from over development of coal mines and the increase of shipping traffic through the reef, a lot of this was from the previous Liberal Queensland State Govt which was voted out last year after only one term.

        • Pat 3.1.1.1

          are the Aussie public (in the main) unaware or uninterested in the state of the GBR?….would have thought it was a source of public concern if only for the potential loss of tourist dollars (the quoted reason for burying report)?

    • Wensleydale 3.2

      This is Malcolm Turdball we’re talking about. He’s basically Abbot with more charisma, less religion and without the embarrassing speech impediment.

      In other news, this is a succinct and hilarious summary of the situation:

  4. Tautoko Mangō Mata 4

    A long read but worth it.

    Nelson’s stock exchange, ‘a big Ponzi scheme,’ and other tales from John Key’s offshore financial services centre

    Posted in News May 27, 2016 – 01:15pm, Gareth Vaughan

    By Gareth Vaughan, Richard Smith & Denise McNabb

    A foreign exchange business that looks and smells like a Ponzi scheme targeting Malaysians, a Nelson-based global stock exchange, a warning from the Czech Republic’s central bank, a fantasist, and curious French-Latvian connections all have one thing in common. New Zealand registered financial service providers.

    http://www.interest.co.nz/news/81725/nelsons-stock-exchange-big-ponzi-scheme-and-other-tales-john-keys-offshore-financial

    • Pat 4.1

      +1

      I am reminded of those apologists who were saying..”Theres no evidence of any misuse”

    • seeker 4.2

      Thankyou for that link TMM 27.5@9.29pm

      Quite wow! And fancy that building being Nelson’s very own stock exchange, I used to pass it every day.

  5. AmaKiwi 5

    In parliament Little asked Key embarrassing questions. Key laughed and said, “The member is mistaken.”

    “The member is mistaken” translates as “Little is lying and I’m laughing in his face.” Calling you a liar is damn serious. It MUST be challenged.

    Another Key trick is to pop up and give an inaudible answer to an embarrassing question. Tell the speaker you could not hear Key’s answer and demand he repeat it slowly and clearly so all the house can hear.

    Helen would not take that crap. Never!

    Andrew, Key made a monkey of you. He was laughing at YOU.

    FIGHT BACK.

  6. dukeofurl 6

    Hilary wins Washington state democratic primary votes 52.6% on Tuesday,( same in Nebraska earlier)

    But Bernie had won the earlier democratic caucus , but the later higher turnout primary doesnt count for state delegats

    So Clinton beats Sanders when it comes to the popular vote of registered democrats in two states where sanders wins the caucuses.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/05/washington-primary-bernie-sanders-hillary-clinton/484313/

  7. dukeofurl 7

    Bernie Sanders web page as a senator

    Economy :Sorry page not found. hahahaha

    Education : Sorry page not found

    http://www.sanders.senate.gov/about

    and click on his priorities

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