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Defence Force Members Are Workers Too

Written By: - Date published: 10:31 am, April 14th, 2013 - 84 comments
Categories: class war, defence, employment, uncategorized, Unions, workers' rights - Tags:

The Court Martial of Flight Lieutenant Dan Pezaro by the NZ Defence Force is making me uneasy. The internal Court of Inquiry into this accident hinted at major disfunction within the upper reaches of the Forces in terms of health and safety. On my reading of that report, the RNZAF itself could be liable in a civil health and safety system as employer, for failing to take all practicable steps to keep its workers safe, but here we have it laying charges against its own staff member, and in a process where the force itself is prosecutor and judge.

I have written before about the lack of clarity within the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE – old DOL) regarding its role in investigating logging truck accidents – it doesn’t investigate them (leaving it to the Police) and in doing so fails to meet its statutory duties. Because the police do it, in most truck accidents the HSE law is not even considered regardless that they are clearly workplace deaths. The same applies to Defence.

In an SSC report commissioned at the end of last year which looked at which agency actually has responsibility for investigating military accidents, it was decided that MBIE is the agency responsible regardless that in the helicopter case MBIE was under the impression that Civil Aviation had the authority (something in the name Civil should have been a clue). It appears no real health and safety work has been done by the regulator with this huge employer. This is a great big gap!

Despite barely paying any attention to the forces, and the forces having a health and safety record that ain’t pretty, MBIE happily told the SSC that they are of the view that NZDF is on the whole a responsible employer! It is clear from the Court of Inquiry report that there were serious management problems in this squadron and higher up including encouragement to take risks to get a job done, and if you thought lack of power in the employment relationship was a factor in Pike River – try saying ‘no’ in the military.

The report goes on to recommend MBIE gets its act together and employs some specialist inspectors who can do this work – this hasn’t happened. The recent drowning by a soldier wearing a life jacket that didn’t inflate because the bloody gas bottle was empty raises questions regarding the most basic safety processes in some areas of Defence.

Because I can’t resist it despite you all telling me my blogs are too long – as a little aside – during the Pike investigation we objected when MBIE allowed Pike River lawyers to sit in while other miners from Pike were interviewed by its inspectors and the Police. We thought allowing the company which could be liable for the accident, to sit in when its workers were giving evidence potentially against it, was a conflict of interest. MBIE allowed it regardless. I was not surprised then to see this in the SSC report on how investigations could be done when the Defence Force or Police also want to investigate a defence accident:

NZ Police, MBIE and NZDF have advised that, in practice, joint interviews can be conducted or witness statements may be made available to other investigating bodies as far as practicable, which minimises the impact on survivors having to relive their experience and reduces the risk of evidence being altered in the retelling.”

Back to the point… sort of…

On a broader note I think it is time for more representation for those who work for the defence forces in this country. I have been concerned over the last couple of years about how the Government and Senior Officers have been taking advantage of the fact these men are sworn to loyalty and are unable to join together to have a collective voice about their employment issues. Recent attacks on them include the unilateral reduction in conditions as we saw last year when rents were significantly increased and other benefits cut, the fact that there have been virtually no pay increases to personnel for 5 years (a small increase was made last year), the moving of uniformed staff into civilian jobs undermining pay and career choices, and this along with the way the Defence Force seems to be unaccountable for its workplace accidents.

On the various picket lines last year I was surprised that the number of families who had sons in the military. It was fascinating to hear their stories – of poor quality shoes that hurt feet, of having to sew pockets into uniforms to carry necessary gear, but mostly concern over conditions of work and wage rates. Some of the stories they told were chilling.

Workers are considered “members” of the defence forces rather than employees. This means they are not covered by employment law and do not have either employment rights or a union. The legislation provides only two ways out – to leave of your own free will or to be discharged for bad behaviour (I have questioned the legality of the redundancies made last year). There is an understanding – you have a membership – in exchange for loyalty and giving up your employment rights, you will be looked after – not exploited – your pay will be fair, you will have a career etc etc. There is an assume extra level of care in the concession of rights these workers make.

But the safety stuff is the biggest worry to me. If Defence were a normal employer, the MBIE would have come in (hopefully!) and if it as an organisation was found to have failed, it would have been prosecuted. In the helicopter case – Defence investigated itself and is now charging Flight Lieutenant Dan Pezaro. The Court of Inquiry report makes disturbing reading and read along Pike River, has some similarities.

From the SSC report:

“The report found that the organisation rewarded risk-taking behaviour, for example the organisation gave a particular individual a “hero-villain” reputation; “The hero-villain would be lauded for what he/she had achieved, but was known to be pushing the limits of safe operations and therefore in conflict with the safety and rules expectations of the RNZAF”

From the Inquiry report

It is likely that operating in marginal weather conditions has become ‘normalised’ behaviour for 3 Squadron and that the formation either did not recognise the risk posed by the poor weather, or had been exposed to it so often that their perception of the risk had reduced.”

Makeshift securing strops and clips have been riveted or bolted onto the toolkit and picketing boxes throughout 3 Squadron role equipment stores and are used to secure them to the floor of the aircraft during flight. All three of these strop sets failed in the accident, freeing the items to move during the impact sequence. These items are heavy and present a significant hazard to the occupants of the aircraft once loose. The torn strops showed evidence of rotting and contamination. These strops are not subject to typical RNZAF servicing regimes, as there are no inspection requirements or design standards for the fitting of the strops to the boxes.”

The Human Factors Report identified that a ‘can do’ culture existed on 3 Squadron at the time of the accident. The ‘can do’ culture had positive aspects that included increased motivation and increased effort towards achieving tasks from scarce resources. These positive aspects are actively encouraged by the RNZAF. The positive aspect was described by one expert as ‘3 Squadron gets the job done, that’s just the way they are.’ Aircrew also stated that if you wanted to get another task, you’d get this one done. This reinforcement is apparent in the Unit Citations, SAR Awards and other commendations received by the Squadron.”

The organisational response was described by an expert as giving a particular individual a ‘hero-villain’ reputation. The hero-villain would be lauded for what he/she had achieved, but was known to be pushing the limits of safe operations and therefore in conflict with the safety and rules expectations of the RNZAF. “

It is unclear from these reports if the NZDF took “all practicable steps” to keep these young men safe. The chance the NZDF will prosecute itself it remote. It needs someone charged for this terrible accident and while this soldier may have some real responsibility to answer, I would feel better if the force itself were also at least investigated as other employers are. We know from Pike River that self regulation does not work to keep workers safe. I suspect the Military is a big fat example of that.

 

 

84 comments on “Defence Force Members Are Workers Too”

  1. ghostwhowalksnz 1

    On top of all the above, as we have seen the RWC duties meant that essential training for Afghanistan was reduced.
    Its unbelievable how National, by their cost saving targets have turned the Defence Force into a Dads Army of incompetance.

    That poor soldier drowning is a harrowing story, poor equipment , not having the required back up boat etc. Will anyone be accountable ?

  2. dumrse 2

    What they don’t need is a Union, certainly nothing represented by the writer of the article. Try and think how they might conduct a battle when two minutes before H hour, a platoon decides to go on strike.

    [lprent: Banned for two weeks for rewriting the authors narrative. Helen mentioned unions exactly once saying they were not covered by one. The post was about the lack of oversight by the government body tasked with health and safety You do not try to rewrite what was written by an author if you wish to comment here. ]

    • Matthew 2.1

      Theres a big difference between being in a combat zone & doing a flyby for shits & giggles. And if a soldier died in a war zone because his gear failed, you can be sure there would be an investigation.

    • KJT 2.2

      I wouldn’t blame them.

      People we expect to fight and maybe die for us should have the best gear and training we can give them.

      Sounds like they do need a Union.

    • chris73 2.4

      Roughly 11 000 personal in the NZDF (about 8500 full time off the top of my head) would add some nice figures and money to the union coffers…

      But I’m sure thats not whats being suggested…

      [lprent: No it wasn’t – banned 4 weeks. The extra weeks are for trying to be a stupid lawyer and dog-whistler. ]

      • fender 2.4.1

        The top of your head seems to be rotten, this is about protecting NZDF personal, not making money you idiot. Any money involved gets invested in ensuring the wellbeing of those who have decided their interests are better served when they work together as a group.

        It’s a shame you got infected with whaleoil virus chris.

    • Murray Olsen 2.5

      How many people would be alive today if soldiers in WW1 had gone on strike instead of going over the top? If the ANZACs had shared a hangi on the beach with the Turks? Let the chickenhawk politicians and the generals go and fight each other. They can even give the survivors medals afterwards, I don’t care.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.5.1

        World War I notwithstanding, nonsense. To paraphrase Tzun Tsu – failure to attend to military matters is the height of inhumanity. The alternative is that the world be ruled by despots.

        • Murray Olsen 2.5.1.1

          A good part of the world is ruled by despots. All the attending to military matters that’s gone on for centuries hasn’t done much to change that, and when our soldiers have fought, it has has sometimes been on the wrong side.
          I mentioned WW1 and Gallipoli. On Gallipoli specifically, how was Turkey not ruled by a despot after all the fighting?
          What did our troops achieve in Vietnam? Malaysia? Afghanistan? Iraq? With regard to Timor Leste, we trained the elite troops of a despot. We did really well as a Little Britain when we invaded Samoa.
          I’m no pacifist, far from it, but I don’t see that 90% of the fighting that’s happened has done anything to prevent despotic rule.

      • KJT 2.5.2

        Rather a few if both German and Allied troops had gone on strike, and refused to fight for Queen Victoria’s offspring’s domestic disputes.

  3. Pascal's bookie 3

    Always good to see the rightwing voices here showing their true colours.

    Any time there’s a war, or the US wants to bomb someone, there’s a plague of rightwingers jumping up and down about patriotism and supporting the troops. When it come to actually supporting the troops however, there is nothing but bile and dishonest horseshit.

    They don’t support the troops, they just support wars.

    Children.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 3.1

      Well said. The Right is an ethics-free zone.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        Not just ethics free but logic free – they really don’t seem to understand that the things they want have to be paid for.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.2

      +1000

      Bloody well said. During the 1990s the National government cut defense force spending to the point that the defense forces were effectively useless. They’re doing it again now. During the 2000s and a government that doesn’t support wars increased that spending giving the defense forces better gear and equipment. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to have given them better training or management.

  4. Tim 4

    “I have written before about the lack of clarity within the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE – old DOL) regarding its role in investigating logging truck accidents – it doesn’t investigate them…. ”

    No it doesn’t. Part of the tactic of this government was to utterly under-resource DoL investigative capability. I’ve no doubt people were yelling their concerns.
    When things verge on collapse, easier to just have a restructure/merger, no matter HOW inappropriate the mixture of functions might be, and pretend all is better.

    I’ve still got a couple of old reference numbers that (after 18 months) have just disappeared into a black hole.
    And NOT ONLY are Defence Force personnel workers too, so are students and immigrants who are subjected to broken promises, sharp deals, theft, unlawful bondage and so on by unscrupulous employers! Often they’re aided and abetted by an Immigration Department that issues visas that are tied to a specific employer. The lucky ones are those that find an employer that actually gives a shit.

    • Tim 4.1

      Oh….. I forgot – just how pleasing it is to see that we have the likes of Helen Kelly and Mike Treen giving a shit

  5. Helen Kelly 5

    David Fisher sent me this interesting link. http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10869239
    On this issue of collective voice – these workers have fairly strict controls on their association so need a form of voice that fits those restrictions. I think the families could be a key here – they could form an association of some sort (Families Supporting Members of the Military?) and act as the lobby group these people need. This is a form of union with a small u really – a collective voice that fits the shape of the industry. It would have the inside information to know what was going on and could speak up with authority on the issues. It could demand that soldiers are reprseented in discussions that impact on their working conditions etc. Regardless – they need a voice in my view.

  6. mac1 6

    A former RAF and Air New Zealand pilot told me last night they should be courtmartialled. For him, with his training and experience, what seems to be a culture of risk-taking was anathema. Perhaps, though, the responsibility for that culture might be higher up than the senior pilot in the court martial.

    Reading Helen’s post, it seems that the armed services have poor equipment and safety standards, with inadequate action where safety is paramount. I would have thought that the armed forces would have been one service where inspection would be regular, rigorous and reactive.

    Widening the scope of that concern to other government initiatives, I note with concern that the new charter schools are going to be overseen by an agency that has no educational brief- the ombudsman- and therefore will have no real oversight.

  7. Macro_adder 7

    As a retired naval officer, and having worked for a number of years in what was then personnel (- now called HR) I really appreciate this post. It was always a concern for me that although most senior and middle management officers had the best interests of those who served at heart, the budgetary restrains and the need to fulfill “operational objectives” always seemed to be at odds. Having come from a family with strong socialist ideals – my dad was a union president for 20+ years the codes of conduct in Military service were out of right field so to speak! The only way that service personnel could express their dissatisfaction was, and still is! through mutiny. The last time this occurred as I recall was in the depression years when pay rates for servicemen were cut, leaving families in desperate straits.
    In the late 70’s early 80’s we had similar problems of poor pay. We were able to deal with this in a innovative way. Firstly an “open ended” engagement rather than fixed term engagement was negotiated with government. This allowed those who were dissatisfied to leave giving 3 months notice, and then, when the numbers of personnel began to reach such critical levels that the various arms were obviously becoming unable to meet their operational commitments, pay rates were finally raised to reasonable levels.
    Unfortunately, with an employment culture prevalent in this country, the result of the 1980’s and 90’s assault on worker rights and perpetuated to this day, which denigrates workers to such an extent, the situation for service personnel is exacerbated.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.1

      Macro_Adder, what do you make of the new rôle for the Navy in suppressing marine-based protests?

      • Macro_adder 7.1.1

        I have already added my name to the on-line petition to which Sir Geoffery Palmer and numerous others have signed http://www.greenpeace.org/new-zealand/en/take-action/Take-action-online/reject-the-Anadarko-Amendment/
        – In other words I am totally against the proposed changes. I might add that during the visit to Auckland of the the USN Nuclear ships to Auckland – whilst on one occassion I was Officer of the Day at Philomel and would have had to head the guard to eject intruders to the base – had that occurred, I and others, took the very real opportunity to tell the visitors that we really did not want their nuclear ships. We did this in a very cordial way – over a beer in the wardroom – after all they were only pawns in the game as well – but they were left in no doubt as to what we thought of the situation. Something that the civilian protester were not in a position to do.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.1.1.1

          Thanks for your response. I was also wondering if you could shed any light on the likely effect (if any) on morale of being deployed against NZ citizens. In an ideal world of course NZ troops would refuse any order to act against NZ civilians. Is there even a remote possibility of that?

          • Macro_adder 7.1.1.1.1

            I retired from the RNZN some years back so really am in position to answer as to what is the state of current morale, within the service. I understand that there is a huge turnover at the present time – mostly connected with current pay rates and renumeration with certain trades. Naval electrical and engineering trades in particular are in high demand by heavy industry. Unfortunately the country as a whole does not appreciate the fact that there are few institutions that train such specialist trades people. I would find it hard to accept an order to act against Civilians in fact this is one of the with the Proposed legislation.
            sorry have to log off now.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Thanks again M_A.

              Let’s hope the National Party fails to remake the military in its own image.

          • Murray Olsen 7.1.1.1.2

            I know some low level people in the Army. They are environmentally conscious. I suspect there is a remote possibility that they would refuse such orders. In 1981, I was told that soldiers had discussed how far they would let Muldoon use them against civilians. My information was that they would not have gone past the support roles they performed, and certainly would not have stood at the shoulders of the Red Squad. For obvious reasons, none of this has been documented.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.1.1.1.2.1

              Except here, by you, just now 🙂

              As for the rest, I should bloody well hope so too. On the environmental front, the US military rates the Greenhouse Effect as a national security concern. No congressional politics for them.

              Who would board Elvis Teddy’s boat? Or the Steve Irwin?

              I hope the National Party has picked a fight it cannot win.

              • Murray Olsen

                My “documentation” here lacks details, times, and names. I’d call it more of a passing mention.
                The military people most likely to board boats and attack civilians, in my opinion, would be in the RNZAF. They are the most right wing of any that I’ve come across, are quite happy to give lectures running down Labour Governments at the Australian Officer Academy, and are ironically seen by many others as “civilians in uniform.” Thankfully, they’d probably all get seasick.

            • joe90 7.1.1.1.2.2

              US Admiral Samuel J. Locklear on the greatest threat the Pacific faces.

              http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/03/11/1698091/paccom-commander-climate-change/

              http://maddowblog.msnbc.com/_news/2013/04/10/17688591-admiral-locklear-wont-follow-inhofes-script

              Inhofe pressed Locklear to say his view has been misrepresented by “environmental extremists” who “think we’re spending too much money on defense.” The admiral did anything but that.

              About 280,000 people died in natural disasters in his Pacific area of responsibility from 2008 to 2012, Locklear said.

              “Now, they weren’t all climate change or weather-related, but a lot of them were,” he said. And that will only get worse as the population soars and even more people move toward “the economic centers, which are near the ports and facilities that support globalization,” according to the admiral.

    • ghostrider888 7.2

      Thank You for the gen. “Master-At-Arms”

  8. ochocinco 8

    What National has done to the NZDF is nothing short of treason

    It actually makes me boil with rage. Funding slashed (but creative accounting – the Vote NZDF remains high, but look at the amount underspent. In real terms they have actually had funding CUT considerably since 2008 when under Labout 99-08 it grew by more than 50% in real terms (not counting the capital charge smoke and mirrors).

    Civilianisation was stupid. They’ve slashed outputs from P-3 hours through to IPV hours as well as reduced the required readiness of our infantry units.

    They let the disgusting beancounter Rod Deane near them… a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.

    Morale is suffering. You can’t run a country like a business, John Key, and you sure as hell can’t run a military force like a business. Esprit de corps, morale, all the intangibles are what matters.

    All the good done under Labour 99-08 has been DESTROYED. And it’s not the first time. Muldoon wondered why we needed battalions, the Roundtable in 90-92 wanted to get rid of the NZDF and thank goodness Richardson et al didn’t go along with it.

    And you know what? They’ve started, stealthily, doing the same to NZ Police. Despite their “tough on crime” rhetoric. They talk “front line” while jobs are bled from the back office… while senior officers are “steered” towards retirement. When important positions are regraded a band down.

    I could go on for hours, but I won’t. I left that world and won’t go back until we reclaim the Treasury benches in 2014.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      You can’t run a country like a business, John Key,

      And in fact, Key isn’t even running things like a good business, just a short term ponzi scam.

      No serious business person who wanted to build a value adding organisation to last would do what he has done.

  9. Tazireviper 9

    Reminds me of a long not forgotten Incident from my past
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melbourne%E2%80%93Evans_collision

  10. Yes 10

    Hold on Helen Kelly just used the words collective…sounds like touting for union fees…the better question for Helen was what makes her an expert on this matter? The title also suggest employment slant

    [lprent: “Yes” only seems to show up when Helen Kelly writes a post and then runs troll style diversions on her posts. Now banned for being a idiot and for never managing to actually say anything on interest past their personal obsession. I’ve left the few comments where they said something substantive and wiped where they were simple trolling tactic statements. ]

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      Touting for workers’ union fees and workers’ union strength!

      Every military knows that co-ordinated action always beats individualistic action. Duh.

      the better question for Helen was what makes her an expert on this matter?

      Do you have any substantial criticisms of the statements made or do you just want to take random potshots at the person?

      • Yes 10.1.1

        there is a fine line between military and workers – there is an expectation of our defence forces on what they sign up for – I think the heading is unfortunate and leads to the wrong assumptions.

        potshots – good words when you consider what the article is about – she is the one taking potshots

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1

          there is a fine line between military and workers – there is an expectation of our defence forces on what they sign up for

          Yeah, like because they may be called on at any time to risk their lives, that they should be well paid, well resourced, well equipped and well led.

          Not much to ask eh?

          potshots – good words when you consider what the article is about – she is the one taking potshots

          Kelly has raised several critical and potentially systemic issues to do with the employment status and safety of our defence force staff. It’s time for you to take these seriously instead of treating the concerns as a joke.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 10.1.1.2

          Why can’t we get some commentary from the Right that consists of anything other than unsupported assertions and bile?

          Here we have yet another example – empty words signifying nothing other than a resentment of the author and the message. Genuine counter arguments are a bit of a stretch.

          No wonder they have a reputation for stupidity when “Yes” et al embody it on a daily basis.

          • Yes 10.1.1.2.1

            awww come on guys – firstly why do you think I am from the right?

            2nd – lets get to the nuts and bolts – Helen Kelly uses well known union phrases in writing her report or essay – whatever it is. But all I am saying is that talking to some mothers on a picket libne is pretty dam weak info to say the least.

            My wife complains everyday but I dont go writing big naff conclusions.

            Helen Kelly is not qualified to talk on that matter – if she invited someone on behalf on armed forces yes – i would give it cred. Of course defence workers are workers are workers – do you think the general public is that thick

            [lprent: She doesn’t have to be a expert on defense matters. She is asking a question about safety. When I was a soldier then I’d have expected to have some oversight on such matters from outside of the military as well. It rather shocks me that there doesn’t appear to be anything in the review of air accidents. It makes me wonder what other areas aren’t reviewed either.

            Simple standard safety procedures demand that all ‘accidents’ involving death or even injury are reviewed by an outside body who are experts. This may be anything from a coroners court to aviation authorities. They should definitely not be the rubber stamp that MOBIE appears to provide. ]

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 10.1.1.2.1.1

              Do you have anything substantive to say or are you a little bit challenged? The OP discusses health and safety issues and raises the conflict of interest and lack of natural justice inherent in the RNZAF’s prosecution of Flight Lieutenant Dan Pezaro, but instead you chose a vacuous childish attack on Helen Kelly, not to mention the poor woman who was unfortunate enough to marry you.

              Or is she a stupid wingnut too?

            • felix 10.1.1.2.1.2

              “My wife complains everyday”

              Really? I can’t imagine why.

              “but I dont go writing big naff conclusions.”

              Until now.

            • Murray Olsen 10.1.1.2.1.3

              We should all be worried about the conditions under which those our government may send into danger are serving. Are you suggesting that a unionist should not be?
              I also doubt if a present armed forces member can give their opinion about their employer on a blog.

  11. AmaKiwi 11

    At the time of the crash the MSM speculated that to SAVE money on expensive hotel accommodation in Wellington on the night before ANZAC Day, the crew had been instructed NOT to fly in the day before. (They were going to the dawn ceremony.) So they took off in the dark and died.

    Any confirmation on whether that line of inquiry has been investigated?

    It sounds very plausible to me.

  12. Yes 12

    [idiot troll statement deleted]

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 12.1

      Yep, you really haven’t got anything to say, have you? Not only that, you are determined to confirm the widely held belief that wingnuts are as thick as pigshit.

      • Yes 12.1.1

        [idiot troll statement deleted]

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 12.1.1.1

          Have you read the site policy on attacking authors? Doing so might give you a teensy hint as to why I think you’re an idiot.

          I note you are still spouting vacuous drivel and you still haven’t made a single substantive observation.

          I sense you may not be here long.

    • Colonial Viper 12.2

      let me go another way – what has Helen Kelly done for NZ?

      She’s raised a number of important employment, health and safety issues affecting, and possibly endangering, our defence force staff.

      While you’ve patently ignored those issues simply in order to attack the messenger.

    • karol 12.3

      Reading, and examining the report, and posting about the concerns thereby raised, is beneficial to many Kiwis – as with Helen’s campaigning for the health and safety of forestry workers – or do the lives of Kiwis doing their best for the other people not matter to you?

  13. Yes 13

    [idiot troll statement deleted]

  14. Yes 14

    Never denied the intention of the article just why is talking to someone on a picket line makes her an expert on armed forces

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      Why? Did she claim that she was a military strategist?

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 14.2

      Does it? In your wizened little wingnut “brain” perhaps it does. The article, on the other hand, is about health and safety, the callous and fatal disregard of the same by this government, and the conflict of interest inherent in the RNZAF’s prosecution of Flight Lieutenant Dan Pezaro.

      I note your puerile drivel fails completely to challenge any of that, while also failing to land a single hit on your intended target.

      Keep it up, you’re a perfect example of a National Party gimp.

      • Yes 14.2.1

        [idiot troll statement deleted]

        • Colonial Viper 14.2.1.1

          Actually I voted for Martians and don’t worry I hired the Pink Panther to continue the investigation

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 14.2.1.2

          Still talking shite, still got nothing to say, except now you’re a literary critic. Twit.

        • karol 14.2.1.3

          Well, what Helen has done is a bit of an investigation – looking at the reports from 2 inquiries, talking to several relevant people. As far as I know she hasn’t been allocated funding, resources and the authority to do more.

          This is just a blog post, raising some important issues. Maybe it will eventually lead to a more extensive inquiry.

          Meanwhile, do you have anything to say about the substance of the issues Helen has raised?

          Looks more like a diversion to me.

    • karol 14.3

      Helen did more than talk to one person – she talked to several people on the picket line as well as looking closely at a couple of relevant reports. Did you actually read the post, Yes?

  15. Yes 15

    [idiot troll statement deleted]

  16. Yes 16

    [idiot troll statement deleted]

  17. Yes 17

    Tell me no one has answered my question..is Helen kelly qualified to talk on this matter..not the report

    [lprent: What I find noticeable is that you only show up whenever Helen writes a post, and then you write crap. I’d say that you have a simple obsession. Permanent ban for attacking an author. All comments you make under any name will be wiped. ]

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 17.1

      English comprehension 101: it wasn’t a question.

      What qualifications does a workers’ advocate need to discuss health and safety, natural justice and conflict of interest? Am I using too many syllables?

    • lprent 17.2

      On the inability of MOBiE in overseeing safety? Yes I’d say that there is no-one better. Do you think that they’re doing a goo job. If so then explain where you get you expertise from.

      And you do look like just another moronic troll insisting that you know everything. All of the usual characteristics, which is why no-one engages with you.

      However. Wiping your comments that look like troll barbs and are without informational content.

  18. Forgotten 19

    Not a bad report, but you missed something vital that has irritated me for years throughout my service – the NZDF also employs WOMEN. We go through the same rubbish, get the same poor uniform & face the same, sometimes worse, treatment. So don’t forget. The NZDF isn’t just for men.

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  • The juxtaposition in this screen shot of the ‘NZ Taxpayers Union Inc’ astroturf lobby group rece...
    Sure, we’re all entitled to put our hand out for government support in times of need. No question about that. But THESE GUYS*? What a joke. (Except it’s real. Check for yourself: COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Employer Search) – P * We’ve discussed them before, here, a little bit. ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    42 mins ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 6: Incestuous relationship of these st...
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    3 hours ago
  • Men To Boys.
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    5 hours ago
  • Those people deserve a flat white
    The pandemic has shown us how effective our public service is. They've pulled together a massive policy response, from a lockdown to economic support to healthcare to planning how to keep everything running when this is over, and done it in next to no time. They are heroes, who have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    19 hours ago
  • Halfway there (maybe)
    New Zealand is now officially halfway through its first 4-week lockdown period. The good news is that it seems to be working - people staying at home has reduced the potential for the virus to spread, and we've had steadily decreasing numbers of new cases over the last few days ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    20 hours ago
  • A pandemic Peter Principle.
    In 1968 Canadian sociologist Laurence Peter coined the phrase “Peter Principle” as a contribution to the sociology of organisations. It explains that in complex organizations people rise to the level of their own incompetence. That is, they get promoted so long as they meet or exceed the specified criteria for ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    20 hours ago
  • Hard News: Music is coming home
    The practice and business of music has been one of the sectors most gravely impacted by the virus sweeping the world. The emphatic nature of our government's response, necessary as it was, has slammed the industry and the people who work in it.There are New Zealand artists – Nadia Reid, ...
    21 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 14
    . . April 8: Day 14 of living in lock-down… The good news first: the downward trajectory of new cases appears to be a real thing. In the last four days, since Sunday, new infections have been dropping: Sunday: 89 new cases Monday: 67 Tuesday: 54 Today (Wednesday): 50 The ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    23 hours ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 5: Don’t censor yourself
    The anti-fluoride movement wants to restrict your reading to “just four studies.” They actively ignore or attempt to discredit other relevant studies. Image credit: Censorship in media. For earlier articles in this series see: ...
    1 day ago
  • “Lord, give us Democratic Socialism – but not yet!”
    Not Now, Not Ever, Never! The problem with Labour's leading activists is that there is never a good time for democratic socialism. Never. They are like Saint Augustine who prayed to the Almighty: “Lord, give me chastity and self-control – but not yet.” In the case of Labour "junior officers", however, ...
    1 day ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #14, 2020
    1 day ago
  • The Few are on the run, again, it still won’t stop reality catching up…
    We are seeing what has been termed “a greater challenge than the crash of 2008” by a growing number of economists and more rational, sane commentators, because whilst that was a shocking exposure of the levels to which hubris had sunk, right down to the blank cheque given those who ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 days ago
  • Speaker: Locked down in Jersey City
    I am a Kiwi living in Jersey City, New Jersey. Jersey City is the second-largest city in the state and is located directly across the Hudson River from downtown Manhattan. Locals call it New York’s sixth borough. More than 350,000 New Jersey citizens, including myself, commute to New York daily ...
    2 days ago
  • Expanding houses
    It’s  a beautiful autumn afternoon, we need to get out of the house, and so our bubble sets off on a bike ride around our local neighbourhood, Cambridge Park. The bikes come out of the garage, and, being really certain we have a front door key, close the garage door ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 13
    . . April 7: Day 13 of living in lock-down… and unlucky for those who are superstitious. A day when there was a ray of sunshine from an otherwise bleak day of worrying signs. Today, as RNZ reported; Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield reported 54 new confirmed and probable cases ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • A UBI in Spain
    So far, universal basic income policies, which see people given a regular income without any conditions, have been trailed only on a small scale. But now, Spain is introducing one nationwide as a response to the pandemic: Spain is to roll out a universal basic income (UBI) “as soon as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 4: Till et al (2020)
    Paul Connet, head of the anti-fluoride propaganda group, Fluoride Action Network, claims that the IQ of children bottle-fed in fluoridated areas drops by 9 points. But he misrepresented the research. There is no observable effect. For earlier articles in this series see: Part 1: Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only ...
    2 days ago
  • The Role of Government
    The Queen’s coronavirus broadcast, with its overtones of Winston Churchill and Vera Lynn, prompted me to reflect on the tribulations my parents’ generation suffered during the Second World War – and I imagine that those parallels, given her own wartime experience, were very much in the Queen’s mind as she ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 days ago
  • The irreversible emissions of a permafrost ‘tipping point’
    This is a re-post from Carbon Brief by Dr Christina Schädel Across vast swaths of the northern hemisphere’s higher reaches, frozen ground holds billions of tonnes of carbon.  As global temperatures rise, this “permafrost” land is at increasing risk of thawing out, potentially releasing its long-held carbon into the atmosphere. Abrupt permafrost ...
    2 days ago
  • How to complain about MDC’s unreasonable LGOIMA charging regime
    Back in February, the Marlborough District Council increased the mount it charges for LGOIMA requests. I used the LGOIMA to poke into this, and it seems the case for increased charges is unjustified: the supposed increase in request volumes it rests on is an artefact of the Council suddenly deciding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 12
    . . April 6: Day 12 of living in lock-down… Another day of a near-empty Park N Ride carpark; . . And another day of near-empty Wellington streets; . . . Light traffic on the motorway. No apparent increase in volume. Commercial vehicles sighted; a gravel-hauling truck; McAuley’s Transport; a ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • A Lamentable Failure of Imagination.
    Imagination By-Pass: Had the Communications Minister, Kris Faafoi (above) taken a firm stand with Bauer, reminding them of their obligations to both their staff and the wider New Zealand public, then a much more favourable outcome may well have ensued. He should have made it clear to the Bauer board ...
    3 days ago
  • Simon Bridges can’t connect
    We all know that Simon Bridges has, at the best of times, an intermittent relationship with the truth. However you would think that during a pandemic and economic crisis the current opposition leader would pull his head in and start to do the right thing.Obviously leading by example should be ...
    3 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 3: Riddell et al (2019)
    Connett promotes Riddell et al (2019) as one of the only four studies one needs to read about fluoridation. But he misunderstands and misrepresents the findings of this study. Image credit: Fluoride Action ...
    3 days ago
  • Could the Atlantic Overturning Circulation ‘shut down’?
    This is a re-post from Carbon Brief by Dr. Richard Wood and Dr. Laura Jackson Generally, we think of climate change as a gradual process: the more greenhouse gases that humans emit, the more the climate will change. But are there any “points of no return” that commit us to irreversible ...
    3 days ago
  • The biggest challenge for a generation ahead – covid-19. Defeat and Recovery
    Last month I wrote my blog on covid-19 pointing out the in our pre Alert Level 4 days that a subject no one had heard here months ago was now dominating the media. An amazing feature of this crisis is how quickly it has swept every other issue aside worldwide. ...
    PunditBy Wyatt Creech
    4 days ago
  • Testing for COVID-19 in NZ to Achieve the Elimination Goal
    Nick Wilson,1 Ayesha Verrall,1,2 Len Cook,3 Alistair Gray,3 Amanda Kvalsvig,1 Michael Baker,1 (1epidemiologists, 2infectious disease physician, 3statisticians) In this blog, we raise ideas for how New Zealand might optimise testing to both identify cases in the community as part of the COVID-19 elimination strategy, and to confirm when the virus ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • Should we all be wearing face masks to prevent Covid-19 spread?
    Maybe you’ve seen the graph that says those countries where everyone wears a mask are the ones that have managed to keep Covid-19 under control? The first thing to say about that claim is that those countries also did lots of other things, too – they acted fast, with intense ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    4 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #14
    Story of the Week... Editorial of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... North Atlantic's capacity to absorb CO2 overestimated, study suggests Research into ocean’s plankton likely to lead to ...
    4 days ago
  • The Americans are trying to kill us all again
    The Treaty on Open Skies is one of the most effective mechanisms for preventing war curently in force. By letting countries make surveillance flights over each others' territory, it eliminates fears that they are secretly preparing for war. So naturally, the US is planning to withdraw from it: The Trump ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 11
    . . April 5: Day eleven of living in lock-down… My one day of rest for the week, and an opportunity to mow my lawns – which I’d been delaying for about three weeks. (On the plus side, the damp micro-climate in my back yard yielded three lovely fresh mushrooms ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Now we know what the rules are
    As the lockdown has gone on, disquiet about what the rules were and the police's enforcement of them has grown. On Friday, Police admitted that they were abusing routine traffic stops to effectively set up illegal checkpoints, and on Saturday Stuff revealed internal police advice saying that they actually needed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 2: Green et al (2019)
    Paul Connett is putting all his eggs in one basket. He says “you only have to read four studies” to find community after fluoridation harmful. Image credit: Fluoride Action Network newsletter. For part 1 of this series see Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018). Paul Connett, ...
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Splore Listening Lounge 2020: the road to a “yes” vote
    As far as anyone can say, New Zeaand still has a general election scheduled for September 19 this year. The election will be accompanied by two referenda, one of which will ask voters:Do you support the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill?The official campaign period for the cannabis referendum begins ...
    4 days ago
  • Obituary for The New Zealand Listener (1939-2020)
    The vast majority of tributes to the Listener hearken back to its glory days, with little reflection on the magazine as it was at its end.I wrote for it, for half the Listener’s life; I have known personally all the editors except the first (mythical) three. From 1978 to 2014 ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • Universal income – a challenge to capitalism or a crutch?
    As the world economy slides rapidly towards deep recession there are growing calls for a Universal Benefit coming from some leftists and rightists. Now Finance Minister Grant Robertson is saying it is on the table.  This article by a French party Workers Struggle provides analysis of various forms of universal ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
    This is the advice from the very top of the anti-fluoride movement – Paul Connett, director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN). Don’t worry about reading  up on all the scientific information “You only have ...
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 10
    . . April 4: Day 10 of living in lock-down… I wake up to a fine Saturday morning which normally would be like an early Christmas. But it’s Day 10 of Level 4 Lock Down. What  will my fellow New Zealanders be doing on a day like this – staying ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Redline reaching out to more writers & readers
    Some time during the night we went over the 850,000 views mark. We might have had our millionth view by the end of this year – certainly by early next year. Most of the people involved in Redline spent years and years producing various small left-wing papers and selling them ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Keir Starmer elected
    Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to ...
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: Michael Baker and the Big House
    One of the key voices in this extraordinary time in which we live is that of University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker. Philip Matthews did an an excellent job this weekend of capturing the way he became the man for this moment in a profile for The Press.But one ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    6 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    1 week ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    1 week ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    1 week ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    1 week ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    1 week ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 week ago

  • Decisions made on urgent turf maintenance
    The Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson has announced that urgent maintenance of turf and care for plants in non-plantation nurseries will soon be able to go ahead under Level 4 restrictions. “The Government has agreed that urgent upkeep and maintenance of biological assets will be able to go ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Acknowledging an extraordinary te reo champion
    E tangi ana a Taranaki iwi, e tangi ana te ao Māori, otirā e tangi ana te motu. Mōu katoa ngā roimata e riringi whānui ana, mōu katoa ngā mihi.   E te kaikōkiri i te reo Māori, e Te Huirangi, takoto mai. Takoto mai me te mōhio ko ngā ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Prime Minister’s remarks halfway through Alert Level 4 lockdown
    Today is day 15 of Alert Level 4 lockdown. And at the halfway mark I have no hesitation in saying, that what New Zealanders have done over the last two weeks is huge. In the face of the greatest threat to human health we have seen in over a century, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Licenses, WoFs and regos extended under lockdown
    All driver licences, WoFs, CoFs, and some vehicle certifications, that expired on or after 1 January 2020 will be valid for up to six months from 10 April 2020, Transport Minister Phil Twyford has announced. “People shouldn’t have to worry about getting fined for having an expired document if driving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Inquiry report into EQC released
    The Government has today released the report from the Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission chaired by Dame Silvia Cartwright.  Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission Grant Robertson says the Government wants to learn from people’s experiences following the Canterbury earthquakes and other recent natural disasters. “Dame Silvia’s report documents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • More time for health workers and elderly to get flu vaccine
    The Government has extended by two weeks till April 27 the amount of time priority groups, such as health workers and those aged over 65, have to get their flu vaccine before it is made available to the wider public. This year’s vaccination campaign is a key component of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Communities step up to help New Zealanders stay connected and fed during lockdown
    Communities stepping up to help New Zealanders stay at home to break the transmission of COVID-19 and save lives have received Government support, said Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. “Delivering groceries for the elderly who can’t shop online, providing data packs for low income families to keep them connected, and being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • 120 COVID-19 testing centres now operating
    Across New Zealand 120 sites are taking samples to be tested for COVID-19.   68 community based assessment centres (CBACs) have been established to take samples from people with COVID-19 symptoms. Alongside this, 52 other centres including designated general practices, swabbing centres, and mobile clinics are now testing people for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Covid19: Government moving quickly to roll out learning from home
    The Ministry of Education is working with partners to develop a package of options so that students can learn at home when Term 2 begins on 15 April, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Supports are also being prepared for households with children under five, to help parents and whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Making learning from home accessible to Māori learners and whānau
    Māori Television to begin educational te reo programmes Ki te Ao Mārama – a new online learning space Thousands of hard copy learning packs ready for distribution Helpdesk and advice service for kōhanga, kura and wharekura Television, the internet and hard copy learning packs are some of the ways whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand to provide assistance to Vanuatu following Tropical Cyclone Harold
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced an initial package of support to help the people and the Government of Vanuatu respond to the impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. “Our Pacific neighbours have been hit by a Category 5 Cyclone at the same time as dealing with the economic impacts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
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  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
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  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
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    7 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
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  • State of National Emergency extended
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