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Exploiting the Charlie Hebdo attack

Written By: - Date published: 7:21 am, January 15th, 2015 - 52 comments
Categories: australian politics, Spying, uk politics - Tags: , ,

How many governments are using the Paris / Charlie Hebdo attack as an excuse to increase surveillance or otherwise remove civil protections? In the UK the Tories certainly are. But PM Cameron’s proposals are idiotic – this piece in The Guardian is particularly blunt:

Cameron wants to ban encryption – he can say goodbye to digital Britain

Online shopping, banking and messaging all use encryption. Cameron either knows his anti-terror talk is unworkable and is looking for headlines, or he hasn’t got a clue

On Monday David Cameron managed a rare political treble: he proposed a policy that is draconian, stupid and economically destructive.

The prime minister made comments widely interpreted as proposing a ban on end-to-end encryption in messages – the technology that protects online communications, shopping, banking, personal data and more.

“[I]n our country, do we want to allow a means of communication between people which we cannot read?”, the prime minister asked rhetorically. … This means that even in principle Cameron’s approach is darkly paradoxical: the attack on Paris was an attack on free expression – but it’s the government that intends to land the killing blow.

Terrorists must not be allowed to disrupt our way of life, we’re often told in the wake of atrocities. We must leave that to governments to do in the wakes of these attacks.

But it’s in the practicalities that the prime minister’s approach slips from draconian to dull-witted. There is no such thing as “good guy encryption” and “bad guy encryption”. The same encryption that protects you and me protects companies, protects governments, and protects terrorists.

If Cameron is proposing an end to encryption in the UK, then any information sent across the internet would be open for any company, government, or script kiddie with 10 minutes “hacking” experience to access. It would spell the end of e-commerce, private online communications and any hope of the UK having any cybersecurity whatsoever.

The response of Australia’s Abbot government displayed (of course) the same authoritarian bent. Coverage in The Age points out the futility:

George Brandis still struggling with metadata

While it is perhaps unsurprising, the Attorney-General’s latest attempt to use the Sydney siege and recent events in France as justifications for the government’s mandatory data retention laws is as distasteful as it is misleading.

The problem with citing France and Sydney as examples, apart from leveraging a number of tragic deaths for political gain, is that they are in fact fairly strong cases of why mandatory data retention may not be the critical necessity he asserts it to be.

Two other recent “acts of terror” similarly point to the same conclusion, namely the Boston Marathon bombing in April 2013 and the brutal murder of Lee Rigby in London the following month. In each of these four recent examples, the perpetrators were well-known to police and intelligence agencies. The Attorney-General quotes former ASIO chief David Irvine as saying that access to metadata is “absolutely crucial” in identifying terrorist networks. As these examples clearly show, identifying the perpetrators was not the problem.

In each case, it was rather decisions taken to not commence, or to cease, close surveillance of these individuals that arguably contributed to the failures of law-enforcement and intelligence agencies to prevent each attack.

For more on the Australian response see here and here. The broad European response is to increase censorship (with the “assurance” of a safeguard for “fundamental freedoms”):

Europe’s answer to France terror ‘attack on free speech’ is greater Internet censorship

Summary:After three days of terrorist attacks in the French capital, European leaders are pushing for stronger measures to crack down on online “extremist” content.

About half of Europe’s member states are pushing for greater online censorship powers in the wake of the terror attacks in France earlier this month.

In a joint statement, interior ministers from 11 European member states — including Germany, Poland, Spain, and the U.K. — expressed condemnation of the attacks, while stressing further cooperation between their law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

Members of the European Union, along with a delegation from the U.S. government — including outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder — adopted, among other sentiments, a resolution to create a partnership of major Internet providers to report and remove material associated with extremism.

My guess is that the only reason that our own government hasn’t jumped on this bandwagon is that they are still on holiday. Expect to see Paris trotted out as an example next time they want to “justify” increased surveillance.

52 comments on “Exploiting the Charlie Hebdo attack”

  1. Paul 1

    I was criticised for saying this yesterday, but until we stop behaving like sheep, all these actions by big business will go unchecked.

    New Zealand’s apathy towards anything other than house prices, rugby and reality TV is not helping. It is complicit in the corporate take over of everyone’s lives.

    If some folk don’t like the word sheep then maybe ostrich would be a better description. They bury their heads in the sand and hope the problems will go away.
    They won’t.

    It’s no point just blaming the politicians. New Zealand voted these people in. People deserve what they get.

    • That was me Paul. I just find the sheep analogy to be unhelpful.

      “People deserve what they get.”

      My point around this is we know the propaganda and the challenges that people constantly face in our capitalistic exploitative society – we all put our heads in the sand whether in big or small ways. If we want to help people realise the truth and make real changes that make a positive difference in their and our lives then the starting point isn’t to call them derogatory terms – that doesn’t work – for some reason people get defensive when we do that and even when they know they should adjust they don’t because their defenses are up.

      imo selfishness, myopic thinking and inability to look past our own noses are the byproducts of our society but i think they are unintended and when recognised, unwanted.

      • Paul 1.1.1

        Yes I would agree with you in part.
        However if people don’t take responsibility for their actions, we’re going nowhere.
        1 million people voted for this government. Clearly the majority of those golf will not benefit from this decision.
        They are more likely to vote in NZ’s Got Talent than participate in any form of democratic action.
        Meanwhile the world burns.

  2. vto 2

    Yes interesting isn’t it…….

    sole reaction to the middle east’s reaction to the wests actions in bombing the middle east for 15 years is ……. more warmongering (this post) and more bombs (French sending aircraft carrier to bolster yanks)…….

    there is one hell of a long way to go in this war yet ……. it hasn’t even got through the start-up phase yet

    murderers

  3. Tracey 3

    rOb, a couple of days ago I posted a pdf link tot he GCSB manual for all departments about handling information. Iain Fletcher’s big work which covers alot of IT stuff. I am not an IT person so alot of it was another language to me. I wonder if any here with IT background peeked through it and understood the implications, good and bad which might relate to whether the kinds of measures intended by Cameron Abbott and when he comes back from holiday our own Mr Key?

    http://www.google.co.nz/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCsQFjAC&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.gcsb.govt.nz%2Fassets%2FGSCB-NZISM%2FNZISM-2014-November-Release.pdf&ei=tLm2VPDSJ4qH8QWE64K4CQ&usg=AFQjCNGqMai3Fegy2y2hnqtJBzh03iaxQw&bvm=bv.83640239,d.dGc

    • RedLogix 3.1

      At a quick glance it seems mostly related to the typical kind of concern everyone operating any kind of system has these days.

      My particular area is industrial control systems, and the chapter headings look like the usual familiar topics relating to the concept of “defense in depth”. I’m not pretending to be an expert in this niche – unfortunately until very recently most clients (in my field at least) have either ignored security, or it’s been a total afterthought that came after the system was running.

      Not all of the GCSB’s remit related to active collection of data – there was another portion which related to a legitimate need to reduce NZ’s vulnerability to industrial espionage, hacking, and unauthorised access etc.

      It’s been a live concern in my field for about a decade – but in the last five years there is no question the credible threat level has ramped up considerably. And there is a real shortage of good specialists available. In that sense this work by the GCSB to provide a some locally relevant standards and good practise guidelines is probably quite welcome.

      (The US based NIST has done similar work I used in the past.)

      • Tracey 3.1.1

        Thanks Red

        I am wondering how easy it will be to justify withholding information on the basis that wording or phraseology is vague, something I can’t tell because I dont have the expertise technically.

        • RedLogix 3.1.1.1

          It’s a fair question. I haven’t read the whole thing for fish hooks. Even then I might not spot them.

          But at first glance it’s purpose is not dissimilar to this document I’m pretty familiar with:

          http://csrc.nist.gov/publications/drafts/800-82r2/sp800_82_r2_draft.pdf

          • Tracey 3.1.1.1.1

            Any reason we couldnt have saved money and just copied that one? IT language is universal, no? and systems?

        • The Murphey 3.1.1.2

          It is a manual which has been reproduced centrally and distributed into ‘local markets’. The GCSB did not author this document

          While the standards are ‘robust’ as outlined inside the manual there is unlikely to be many entities including the ‘spooks’ who could match the standards due to lack of specialist skills required to implement and maintain even a percentage of the standards in perimeter security alone

          Development of systems since early industry and the practice of ‘solution delivery’ are such that meeting the standards outlined in the manual is almost impossible to achieve. It could be described as impossible even if resources were ‘unlimited’ certainly from ‘top to bottom’ it would be impossible to match the standards in the manual

          Legislation wording is where you should be analyzing word use not this manual.

          That said the manual is likely to be reproduced with components used in proposed bills leading to becoming ‘laws’ and certainly in compliance which government departments at all levels are bound to meet. That they do not and will continue not to meet the standards and the reasons why is another discussion

          • RedLogix 3.1.1.2.1

            It is a manual which has been reproduced centrally and distributed into ‘local markets’. The GCSB did not author this document

            Most local standards owe a lot to work done elsewhere. For the most part I see that as a good thing.

            But otherwise yes, what I see is that most organisations look at a document like this and select the bits they see as the ‘low hanging fruit’ – the implementations which give the best results relevant to their situation and budget.

          • Tracey 3.1.1.2.2

            Sorry, but Ian Fletcher clearly claims to have authored it.

            • The Murphey 3.1.1.2.2.1

              Q. Does claiming something or having a name on it prove authorship or production ?

              Fletcher neither authored or produced that document and the reasons why he did not are quickly identifiable

              Good link

              Thank you

              • Tracey

                having your name on it is prima facie evidence you authored it. You are right though, Fletcher is merely “commending” it to CEO’s and others. Copyright belongs to the Crown but the document is definitely purporting to have been written by the “GCSB”.

                Perhaps an OIA might resolve the issue, and the cost 😉

  4. Colonial Rawshark 4

    So much for those “world leaders” marching for civil liberties the other day.

    • Skinny 4.1

      All propaganda when you consider the anti democratic invasions air strikes/drone warfare. Like many I found the gate crashing Isreli was insulting.

      The National Party spin merchants will be gearing up to serve New Zealanders with a full on ANZAC memorial blitz. Expect an announcement that we will be joining the wars in the Middle East and the need for tough new measures to counter the threat of terrorism. All though the later could happen earlier with the pending Cricket World Cup.

      • Wayne 4.1.1

        it is pretty obvious that Prime Minister Netanyahu was there because of the attack on the Jewish supermarket. But on this site I am not surprised at the usual anti-Israel theme. It seems to be a requirement for any fully paid up member of the Hard Left.

        I was more surprised at Prime Minister Abbas being there. But perhaps the two of them chose to be in Paris so they could also have private discussions on the Israel/Palestine issues

        • Skinny 4.1.1.1

          “it is pretty obvious that Prime Minister Netanyahu was there because of the attack on the Jewish supermarket”.

          More like the thug Netanyahu was there (uninvited I might add) to bolster his election chances back home. The French Leader was quoted as “fuming Netanyahu gatecrashed” the event. Given the crimes against humanity that the Israelis have inflicted on the Arabs, your view is oneway traffic.

        • tricledrown 4.1.1.2

          Wayne Kerr Rogers brother.
          Charlie Hedbo sacked a journalist 12 days before this fundamentalist jihadist abhorent attack!
          The journalist poked fun at fundamentalist Jews!
          But it’s okay to poke at one and not the other!
          Fairness is what Most posters want on this Site Wayne!
          Framing us as bigotted shows how narrow your world view is!
          The Ethnic cleansing that the right wing fundamentalist Jews have perpatrated on the Palestenian Arabs since 1947 is one of the main reasons Muslim Fundamentalism has got out of control!
          A recent poll in Israel showed 56% of Israeli’s were against the way its right wing govt was treating the palestinians.
          This right wing netenyahu lead govt is deliberatly settling fundamentalist Jews on Palestinian land,using the IDF to take the land by force,while none of these fundamentalist jews have to serve in the the IDF as their cultism says they are superior to ordinary Israeli’s!
          fundamentalist extremism has grown out of control,the other main reason was the unescessary invasion of Irag And Afganistan this has opened up a hornets nest that George HW Bush warned his son against publicly but was silenced quickly by the Chaney Cartel!
          You are just a yesman Wayne no research of historical fact!
          Trying to shut down free speech in New Zealand the very thing you claim to be defending!
          Wayne that makes you a tool a bigoted naive tool of the propaganda war aligning all Muslims!

        • Paul 4.1.1.3

          Hard left…hard left….hard left…

          A little repetitive Wayne.

          Personally I’m not a Maoist.
          Have you looked up Overton’s Window yet?
          Typical of the extreme right to see Social Democrats as communists.
          You should google McCarthyism, Wayne.

          • Skinny 4.1.1.3.1

            “Hard left…hard left….hard left…”

            In Wayne’s World it’s “Fully paid up member of the Hard Left” whatever that means?
            I hope we don’t permit an Israeli embassy here, not after their spy agents were caught using false New Zealand passports. No doubt up to no good, like murdering people from other nations.

            Wouldn’t mind handing you over to my elderly 90 year old uncle who has a framed photo of Gobbles on his wall. He will give you some hard left alright.

        • The Murphey 4.1.1.4

          I’ll ask you again Wayne as you did not respond a few days back.

          In your comment above it can be interpreted that your position is ‘pro Isreal’ because you are not “hard left”

          Q. What is your position regarding Isreal and its ongoing genocide against the Palestinian people ?

          Q. Do you believe anti war anti murder and anti genocide perspectives to be “anti Isreal” ?

          Q. Are you an Isreali citizen or decendent or have jewish heritage such as John Key claims ?

          Q. What is you view on influence exerted by AIPAC for example and the influence of the dual Isreali citizens occupying swaths of US legislative and departmental positions at the highest levels ?

          • Colonial Rawshark 4.1.1.4.1

            clearly, we’re OK with military and economic occupation of foreign lands and foreign peoples, as long as it is our friends who do it.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 4.1.1.5

          Wayne Mapp, I doubt you are ignorant of the difference between criticising someone’s behaviour and attacking therm personally.

          So on the one hand people criticise Israeli behaviour in Palestine, and on the other you make up dehumanising labels for the critics.

          It looks deliberate, and speaks volumes about your moral compass.

          • Tracey 4.1.1.5.1

            You’re walking by a shallow pond, and there’s a child who’s drowning there. And you could wade in and save this child easily, but if you do this, you’re going to ruin your new Italian suit. (In something I wrote, I said, “It cost you $500.” And my colleague Dan Gilbert says, “They cost a lot more than that, Josh.” (Laughter). Two-thousand-dollar suit.) Now, you say, is it okay to let the child drown? Most of us would say, you’re a moral monster if you say, “I’m going to let this child drown because I’m worried about my Armani suit.”

            Now, next case: There are children on the other side of the world who are desperately in need of food and medicine, and by making a donation smaller than $2,000, you can probably save at least one of their lives. And you say, “Well, I’d like to save them, but I have my eye on this Armani suit, and so I think I’m going to buy the Armani suit instead of saving them.” There, we say, well, you ain’t no saint, but we don’t think that you’re a moral monster for choosing to spend your money on luxury goods, instead of saving other people’s lives.

            Peter Singer

        • Tracey 4.1.1.6

          No one could get flights to Nigeria Wayne?

        • Naturesong 4.1.1.7

          What anti-Israel theme?

          Or are you talking about Skinny pointing out Netanyahu’s hypocrisy?

        • Naturesong 4.1.1.8

          When you say hard left, what on earth are you talking about?

          Or is it simply a divisive rhetorical device to create an “other” group to be demonised?

          • Tracey 4.1.1.8.1

            he means people who don’t agree with his world view/

            • Naturesong 4.1.1.8.1.1

              It’s not just that.

              I’ve seen this “Hard Left” label used quite a lot lately.

              The idea is to create an identifiable group that the writer’s supporters can identify as an “other” group whose interests are opposed to yours.

              This ensures that there can be no conversation, no meeting of ideas, no discourse at all; IT IS POISON

              That this is an ex Member of the New Zealand Parliament employing this type of language fills me with sadness and a deep sense of shame.

              • Colonial Rawshark

                +1

              • Tracey

                he does seem to be using it to create a meme…

                but the kneejerk reaction of otherism is quite common, Wayne is succumbing to his stone age wiring.

                AND current Law Commissioner…

              • Skinny

                Mapp was no great shake as an MP, didn’t know if he was Martha or Arthur, started in Labour but they didn’t want a light weight. The LP read it well he got shuffled out the back door in the end. Bitter old man by the looks.

                • Tracey

                  “started in labour”

                  source please

                  • Skinny

                    Oh please Tracey your so demanding lol and more importantly interrupting my drinking time while watching one day cricket.

                    ” He even stood against Phil Goff for the Labour nomination for Mt Roskill in 1981″.

                    I remember hearing this, a quick google search shows up with a reference on Kiwi Blog of all places, more an attack on Mallard I note.

                    • Tracey

                      i googled first and couldnt find any mention. i guess he is ashamed 😉

                      you have your computer in the wrong room. i can ask you questions and watch the cricket…

                  • Anne

                    Yes Tracey he was a member of the Auckland Central Labour Party during Richard Prebble’s reign. That would have been in the late 70s and 80s. I don’t know when he parted company with Labour but am guessing it was sometime during the David Lange era. I was involved with Labour in the 1970s up to 1984, then had a long break from politics. I have no recollection of ever meeting Wayne Mapp during that time so he can’t have been all that active.

                    • Skinny

                      Or relevance I may say. Although he would have inadvertently added to Prebble’s longevity, which as history shows hurt the Left.

                    • Tracey

                      go to wiki…. it seems he wants no one to know. mind you it gives an insight to how ” hard right” that labour govt was

        • adam 4.1.1.9

          As a member of the Hard left. I’m offended you think fluffy, whimsical, and middle of the road leftist who do dominate this site could be on any planet called hard left. Wayne you’re delusional, and just on some bad drugs for such utterances. Try pot, it may amp you’re paranoid moments, but lots of loud music and time by yourself, may just help you overcome that.

          As a hard lefty I oppose all theocracies, and ones who lock up and kill children are just a little hard to justify, unless you’re a right wing nut job. But, hey go ahead – defend the killing of children there Wayne. I wait with baited breath – nah I know you’re not going to, it’s important not to criticise Israel as a rogue state. States which kill children are just OK by Wayne. Wayne, the child killer by proxy.

        • joe90 4.1.1.10

          it is pretty obvious that Prime Minister Netanyahu was there because of the attack on the Jewish supermarket

          Netanyahu was politicing.

          After the French government began to send invitations to world leaders to participate in the rally against terror, Hollande’s national security adviser, Jacques Audibert, contacted his Israeli counterpart, Yossi Cohen, and said that Hollande would prefer that Netanyahu not attend, the source said.

          […]

          According to the source, Netanyahu at first acquiesced to the French request. In any case, the Shin Bet security service unit that protects public figures considered the arrangements for the prime minister’s security to be complex. And so, on Saturday evening, Netanyahu’s people announced that he would not be flying to Paris because of security concerns. Netanyahu told the French he would come to France on Tuesday for a Jewish community event.

          […]

          However, on Saturday night, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and Economy Minister Naftali Bennett announced their intention to go to Paris and take part in the march and meet with the Jewish community. When Netanyahu heard they were going, he informed the French he would be attending the march after all.

          According to the source, when Cohen informed Audibert that Netanyahu would be attending the event after all, Audibert angrily told Cohen that the prime minister’s conduct would have an adverse effect on ties between the two countries as long as Hollande was president of France and Netanyahu was prime minister of Israel.

        • Anne 4.1.1.11

          Wayne @4.1.1

          I’ve had enough of your hard left meme. It’s crap and you know it. I’ve actually stuck up for you once or twice in the past on this site because I gave you credit for being better than the Hootons, Keys, Joyces and Slaters of this world. I didn’t think you would stoop to this kind of cretinous C/T nonsense. I was wrong it seems so I won’t be sticking up for you again.

          There is no one who is hard left on this site – particularly among the authors. Sure… there are a few commenters who can be a bit extremist in their choice of words, but no-one who is hard line or even marginally dangerous. They wouldn’t last long here of they were.

          So bloody grow up and stop behaving like a slimy rwnj trole!

          Edit: that’s telling you mate how it is mate.

  5. The Murphey 5

    Q. It is possible as the frequency of such ‘events’ rises the rhetoric and actions of the ‘actors’ will become transparent to greater numbers of people who may have previously related to great surveillance as ‘necessary’ ?

    Q. Or is it more likely that ‘greater numbers’ will simply tune out of any discussion making it easier for the hypocrite actors to deploy ‘crazier rhetoric and tactics’ against the populace ?

  6. Kiwiri - Raided of the Last Shark 6

    My guess is that the only reason that our own government hasn’t jumped on this bandwagon is that they are still on holiday.

    When this National Government gets on to squeezing every bit out of the issues to play politics and promote the surveillance state, let’s hope the Labour Caucus and Party will not play origami with themselves.

    Labour’s call on the bill being pushed under urgency last month was weak and very difficult to explain or justify over family Christmas dinner and New Year’s drinks. Let’s hope Labour will demonstrate its true principles and stick to them, and actually give, to those of us who care, a party that we can really support without excuses or embarrassment.

  7. Dave 7

    Banning encryption would be as difficult as stopping movie piracy. It is nature of technology that allows users to ran. What they want or create new ideas like uber it can’t be stopped look at the movie and music businesses general purpose devices can configured any way a user likes

  8. Philip Ferguson 8

    One of the best writers on the issue of ‘race’, difference, critical of identity politics and the growth of irrationalism, is the anti-racist veteran Kenan Malik. Kenan was a key figure in Workers Against Racism, which was the main group organising physical defence of Asian families under attack by racist gangs in Britain in the 1980s and also campaigning for the repeal of all immigration controls.

    His take on the murders at Charlie Hebdo is well worth reading:
    https://rdln.wordpress.com/2015/01/15/charlie-hebdo-radical-islam-pusillanimous-liberals-and-free-speech/

    I’d suggest it is read in conjunction with his much longer piece on secular leftism, multiculturalism and Islamic fundamentalism:
    https://rdln.wordpress.com/2015/01/15/secular-leftism-multiculturalism-and-islamic-fundamentalism/

    Phil

    • Ad 8.1

      Rushdie’s own memoirs on the fatwa give the insiders’ view to the extraordinary challenge the state faced to assert Rushdie’s rights as citizen against extremist Muslim death threats – both statist and individual.

    • Tracey 8.2

      Thanks Phil. I couldn’t agree more with the expression in the first link. I am enjoying your linking btw and don’t always come back to indicate I have read them, but I am.

  9. Iron Sky 9

    The surveillance guys don’t seem too concerned if you die early from poor wages and naff jobs. They are not worried about the back handers from Stadium builds, roads of no significance and BS convention centers.

    Instead they chase pumpkins:

    “But Gedalah had something in mind. He sent four men to collect a dozen pumpkins, and he had them set in the pylons that supported the overhead power line that ran the train, one pumpkin to each pylon.

    “What are they for?” Mendel asked.“Nothing,” Gedaleh said. “They’re there to make the Germans wonder why they’re there. We’ve wasted maybe two minutes; they’re methodical, they’ll waste a lot more.”

    “…We also have friends among the railroad men, and they tell us that so far the Germans of the garrison haven’t dared touch the pumpkins. They’ve blocked the line and have brought in a team of mine detectors from Cracow. They’re more worried about the pumpkins than about the car you stole.”

    ― Primo Levi, If Not Now, When?

    Lessons Learned: Make pumpkins (lots of them, cyber space, real space etc…. keep them employed and feeling important)

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    . . 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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
    4 days 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? ...
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    4 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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 ...
    5 days 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
    5 days 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 ...
    5 days 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 ...
    5 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    5 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    5 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    5 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    6 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    7 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    7 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story 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... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    7 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    1 week ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago

  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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  • COVID-19 updates
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