Fear and loathing in Aotearoa

Written By: - Date published: 8:47 am, September 18th, 2017 - 54 comments
Categories: bill english, election 2017, Environment, farming, farming, jacinda ardern, national, Politics, same old national, sustainability - Tags: ,

This has been a strange election campaign, unlike any I can think of.

Four weeks ago it was meant to be a walk in the park for National.  A coronation of Prime Minister Bill English as he swept all aside.  And Labour in disarray.

But National has been hopelessly derailed by events and shown how incapable it is of adjusting quickly to changing circumstances.  As soon as Jacindamania hit National had no idea what to do.

We are now at the stage where the polls suggest that the levels of Labour’s and National’s support are close.

And instead of Winston being king maker no matter what suddenly the prospect of a Labour Green coalition is no longer a pipe dream.

So how has National responded?

Really bad.  I cannot believe how bad they are campaigning.

They have forgotten every lesson that John Key taught.  The need to triangulate, and appear like you are actually human.  To reach out and have selfies with drag queens, to make sure you have MPs who belong to the different ethnic communities in electable list positions, to talk about the underclass and imply that you are going to be just like Labour but you will also offer a tax cut.

This was John Key’s National Party.  Damned hard to beat and damaging to our future but more through neglect and incompetence than 1990s style Ruthenasian deliberate infliction of harm.

But post Key the problem for National is that it is no longer capable of running a competent campaign.  Especially when things change quickly, then National is hopeless.  Its compass is formed by polling and focus groups and when it does not have the chance to work out what it should be saying or doing it is at a real loss.

National seems to now have three campaign lines.  The first is to attack Labour’s financial competence and hope that enough of the population do not appreciate that all the experts are right and National is telling a pile of porkies.

The second is to reach out to the base, basically farmers.  I don’t know why.  This is a completely defensive move.  Spreading shyte about how much Labour’s water tax will cost farmers is both a lie but also rather irrelevant.  They have the farmer vote.  They should bank it and move on.

They should instead be reaching out to ethnic groups and liberal urbanists in the hope that they will persuade enough to stick to pale blue.

And the ethnic strategy may backfire big time.  National needs about 42% to maintain most of their ethnic MPs although at that figure National’s Philippine candidate Paulo Garcia will not make it.  And as the vote sinks, and I am sure it will, they start losing ethnic candidates.  If they get down to about 36% then Alfred Ngaro goes and their ethnic MPs are all gone.

The third line, currently related to the second,  is to basically make shit up.  And this is what happened yesterday.

Simon Wilson put this claim through the sniff test.

But what is National saying to its rural support base? It’s not just that Labour is a tax and spend party, or that Labour’s water tax will cripple good honest farmers. Bill English told the nation on TVNZ’s Q&A yesterday morning that the consequence of the water policies of the “opposition parties” was to “slaughter the dairy herd”. He then said, “The next thing they’ll be talking about: depopulate the cities, because they cause water pollution too.”

This, by the way, was shortly after he’d denied he was leading a campaign of lies and scaremongering. Whatever happened to Honest Bill?

For the record, Labour’s policy on the size of the dairy herd is the same as National’s: both say we’re probably reaching capacity, but decline to say there are too many cows. Both believe the future of dairy lies in increased productivity, not growth in stock numbers. (To compare all the party policies on water and everything else, check out our Policy tool.)

The Greens’ policy is different. They want to reduce the herd by 30-35%, using financial incentives that are set out in policy, over a period of 30 years. As any farmer will tell you, that does not mean a single cow has to be taken out and shot.

And the water tax? Labour wants to put a tax on water to pay for restoring the quality of waterways. Bill English on RNZ last week described it as “a $50,000 or $100,000 tax”, and Steven Joyce has used those figures too. Are they right? Some fact checkers have looked at the claim by using averages across the dairy sector, but Dairy NZ says there is a more accurate way to do it. So let’s use its figures.

Dairy NZ says there are 2000 dairy farms using irrigation. Most of them are in the South Island and are much larger than the average NZ dairy farm. According to Dairy NZ, Labour’s water tax would cost those farms an average $45,000 per year. Close to the low end of English’s range, but nothing like the $100,000 he also mentioned. There are 10,000 more dairy farms in New Zealand that do not use irrigation. Dairy NZ says they would pay $240 a year.

Of course, lots of other farmers irrigate too. But they don’t use anything like the quantity of water required by the South Island’s new industrial-scale dairy farms. Those farms exist only because of irrigation, and despite environmental programmes to mitigate the damage, they are degrading the waterways. That’s just fact. Is it unreasonable that they should help pay for more concerted action to clean up those waterways?

Wilson also notes this:

It’s revealing in many ways that Bill English thinks it’s okay to get farmers enraged at Labour and the Greens. One is that he appears to believe his reputation for integrity is unassailable. Another is that his party knows slander works, and they’re not above using it. We knew that already, most recently thanks to Steven Joyce and the so-called $11 billion hole in Labour’s budget. That was a fiction English himself would have taken part in creating and which he continues to promote – he did so on that same Q&A programme.

A third thing to note is that English is clearly not trying to win urban liberal votes. He’s already got all of those he’s going to get, on the basis of other policies. He’s going hard after the rural and provincial votes – not people thinking about voting Labour or Greens, but the NZ First supporters.

And a fourth thing, the scariest thing, is that if English thinks it’s OK to insinuate that Labour is going to start slaughtering cows on national television, what are he and his colleagues telling people when there are no cameras present?

If you took English’s comments at face value Labour will be basically like the Pol Pot Regime except mean to cows as well. Bill English has well and truly jumped the shark on this occasion.

Back in the day John Key at least pretended that he was ambitious for New Zealand. Bill English is John Key without the PR. It is time for a new leadership to take over the leadership of the country.

54 comments on “Fear and loathing in Aotearoa”

  1. tracey 1

    Makes me wonder if their polling indicated some loss in rural areas.

    Most frightening to me is amidst all these lies and lies and lies they maintain a minimum of 40% of intending voters.

    Do these 40% teach their kids to lie whenever and where they can? I doubt it and yet… the same group who constantly prattle about personal responsibility and consequences. Just not for them and tgeirs?

  2. Shows really that the vacuous selfish simple minded idiot key was really the heart and soul not to mention the guts of the gnats. Sad.

  3. Cinny 3

    So many lies… here is another porker via paula bennett from this morning…

    “Ms Bennett, an ex-beneficiary and former Minister for Social Development, said under National, New Zealand has “got the lowest number on welfare that we have seen for generations”.

    This isn’t true. According to the Ministry for Social Development, in June this year there were 276,331 working age people receiving a main benefit – but there were only 268,972 in 2008, at the end of Labour’s nine years in Government.”

    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/election/2017/09/gap-between-rich-and-poor-still-wide-because-of-the-quakes-paula-bennett.html

    • tracey 3.1

      And that is not including those for whom the system became so torurous they stopped trying for benefits. Like ACCs back defaul positikn is decline and then see if the person will fight it.

      At one stage the District Court was overturning ovef 45% of ACC decisions. And that is only the people with the energy or money to fight

      By 2015 the Govts solution? Was to get rid of the District Court as arbiter

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11485289

      They backed down last year but their intent was clear.
      http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/313783/govt-to-accept-changes-to-acc-appeals-system

      ” Over the six years of the study, ACC turned down over 600,000 claims, but only 40,000 people disputed their decisions and applied for a review. Around 25,000 independent review hearings were held and 4000 appeals were lodged in the district court against review decisions.

      The main reason claimants gave for not appealing was cost, followed by lacking the energy, motivation or resilience. ” http://m.nzdoctor.co.nz//news-detail.aspx?n=67678
      In the same article

      ” From being a commission, there to assist the claimant and the court and facilitate people getting back to work if possible, ACC has become a corporation which considers itself an adversarial party to a full-scale legal dispute acting in the interest of its shareholders, the researchers say.

      Claimants struggle to find legal representation

      While claimants struggle to find legal representation and are generally  unable to pay for it since their income has dropped due to an inability to work after their accident, there is a well-developed market for representation for ACC, the researchers say.

      Furthermore, there is indication that new medico-legal firms and existing corporate firms are seeking to secure retainers with ACC.

      This leaves claimants in the position of having to represent themselves against the “leviathan” which has been gaining new skills, insights and precedents with each new case.

      “As ACC was always one party, they potentially have a significant advantage in litigation strategy, gaining precedents and all of the other advantages of repeat litigants identified in literature.

      “ACC is the quintessential repeat player. It has had and anticipates repeat litigation, it has low stakes in the outcome of any one case, but has the resources to pursue long-term interest…” 

      The result is a low success rate for claimants. “

  4. Robert Guyton 4

    Bill’s “slaughter the dairy herd” is straight from David Farrar who tested the phrase over several years on Kiwiblog, each time having his arse handed to him when he did but plugging away with it regardless. He knows and Bill knows it’s tripe, and they must be pretty desperate to be dragging it out now into the light of day and flogging it.

  5. Peter 5

    Don’t underestimate the power of Fear Uncertainty and Doubt

    • David Mac 5.1

      It’s an energy that is countered by our search for a guiding light.

    • mac1 5.2

      Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt at General Elections- aka FUDGE.

      National’s motto seem to be “Let’s Fudge It.”

      • David Mac 5.2.1

        It’s an unavoidable flaw in our system that all political parties must wrestle with. What will win votes versus What will be fabulous for NZ. I think an appealing aspect of the Greens is their tendency to aim for the ‘fabulous for NZ’ end of the scale.

      • Anne 5.2.2

        Yes. I call it ‘if all else fails muddy the waters’ strategy. And unfortunately it works. That is in part the fault of a dumbed down education system which has produced two generations of political imbeciles who have no knowledge of… or sense of civic duty.

        Selfishness and meanness has become the ‘de jour of the day’. In other words, the old ‘I’m alright Jack to hell with everyone else’ mentality is now widespread.

        Hate to be a party pooper but there’s no guarantee it won’t work again just like it did in 2008, 2011 and 2014.

  6. mosa 6

    What ever happened to ” Honest Bill ” ?

    That was an invention by the media and Crosby- Textor to try to sell him to the general population as some sort of god who could run a sucessful economy and be PM at the same time.

    Sound familar ?

    It just shows how a lot of people in this country live in an alternative reality where truth and real facts dont exist and they believe their own propaganda and we should do the same.

    The problem is these people control our country and our lives.

    Meanwhile real life and its consequences keep grinding on for the rest of us.

    • tracey 6.1

      It is like they dont remember the 900 a week rort… and every lie before and after.

    • Bearded Git 6.2

      Steve Braunias destroyed Bill in the Herald at the weekend:

      “Armed with a notebook and a stethoscope, I went looking for signs of life in Bill English during three days on the campaign trail this week. It was hard work. He was vague, foggy….as National’s new leader, English has looked smaller, hard to see, kind of wispy……… And then he was led inside the school, and traipsed from one science classroom to the next, making excruciating conversation everywhere he went.”

  7. Pat 7

    “This was John Key’s National Party. Damned hard to beat and damaging to our future but more through neglect and incompetence than 1990s style Ruthenasian deliberate infliction of harm.”

    Not at all….exactly the same philosophy is at play and even some of the same players (Bill for one)…just a different presentation, a lot more spin but the same goal.

    http://werewolf.co.nz/2017/08/bill-english-the-forgotten-history/

    • tracey 7.1

      Bill was painted as boring and sensible for so long he couldnt make the transition to hollow sound piece. But you have to admit he has tried

  8. Pete 8

    Preying on fear and promoting loathing are genuine tactics focused on the type of people in our country. There are many who are small-minded, timid and cowering waiting to be manipulated.

    Many want to be dominated and Crusher and Paula are the heavies for that. Steven is their one for the ‘smarts’, Bill for his Deep South honesty and openness with Gerry there, the perfect example that you can be whatever you want despite your lack of ability.

  9. The second is to reach out to the base, basically farmers. I don’t know why. This is a completely defensive move. Spreading shyte about how much Labour’s water tax will cost farmers is both a lie but also rather irrelevant. They have the farmer vote. They should bank it and move on.

    Which is really rather silly:

    1. Farmers are a declining share of the population with fewer and fewer people even remotely involved in it
    2. Many people are looking at farmers and questioning why they’re allowed to get away with the shit that they do

    End result would be that they’re more likely to lose votes going this way.

    And a fourth thing, the scariest thing, is that if English thinks it’s OK to insinuate that Labour is going to start slaughtering cows on national television, what are he and his colleagues telling people when there are no cameras present?

    That would be when the full on lying comes in.

    • Sans Cle 9.1

      This was posted in OM yesterday, but it’s worth reposting. Desperate pollution from a minority of dairy farmers. Links in the “Read more” section are also worth a read.

    • tracey 9.2

      The media are wetting themselves with hyperbolic headlines for a few hundred farmers and supporters.

      The local Fed Farmer said it wasnt a political rally but a way to set the record straight. Yeah Right. Not hard to see what Bill and the Nats have been doing by stirring up the farmers. Of course Bills brother is former Fed Farmers person. I am sure that is a coincidence

  10. ianmac 10

    To repeat Micky’s link to the National Business Review which I thought was a National magazine, it is a must read Transcript.
    https://www.nbr.co.nz/article/english-raises-prospect-slaughtered-cows-depopulated-cities-ck-207780#comments

    I cannot believe that Honest Bill can splurge such rubbish. Thankyou Corin for making it possible, and weird that the Q&A panel skirted the English interview and drilled in on the others instead.
    Note that the comments below NBR were also not happy with the English line.

    • tc 10.1

      “…weird that the Q&A panel skirted the English interview and drilled in on the others instead…”

      Not wierd just proves how owned they are giving Blinglish a free pass on fear mongering and lying rather than calling him the BS/not having a plan/their track record/etc.

      Pollys are as honest as the system lets them be and that’s why NACT lie their asses off as the system allows them to as we’ve no independant/public media to call it out for the BS it is.

  11. Bearded Git 11

    Not sure if it was ever going to be “a walk in the park” for the Nats. Labour and the Greens were polling 39% (which probably means 40) and it was only ever going to take a shift of 8% to win the election for the Left, and with Bill in charge of the Nats, Little may have done this.

    Jacinda certainly has. It is the crowds she is getting (like Sanders and Corbyn) that shows the shift. Unlike Sanders and Corbyn however, Jacinda is lucky that she has a fair electoral system on her side.

    If they had MMP in the UK Corbyn would be PM now.

    I agree with the post, it is a very odd thing about Bill’s campaign that he is spending so much time shoring up his rural base when they will vote for him anyway.

  12. Keith 12

    It’s a vile campaign by National, one of lies and ugliness and one that English fully subscribes to in his absolute desperation to avoid electoral defeat twice in his life,

    Whatever integrity English once appeared to have has been burned to cinders but if he wins, it’s job done.

    This government is not only tired but one that has led with blatant dishonesty from the get go. Incompetence maybe, but a deliberate direction to feather the nests of those in and close to the Party and in that they have caused great harm. And I genuinely believe the public service is on its bended knees right now and more dysfunctional than ever, directly thanks to National.

    I wonder if the real Bill English tries in vain at night to wash the filth off that has crawled inside his skin to win at all costs, or his current iteration the genuine article?

    • tracey 12.1

      What integrity did he have? He sat at the right hand of Key. He paid lawyers and accountants to rort 900 a week from us. He was there in 02 and 05 when the Bretheren were plotting…

  13. Ad 13

    Joyce, English and National are playing the right game at the right time.
    And they are stealing the momentum back.

    Labour need to be just as dark if they are to gain power.
    Like getting their own proxies to march in the streets.

    This isn’t the happy-sparkle-pony week.

    This is the negative week.

    • tracey 13.1

      Yeah we know you revere Machieavelli Ad.

      • Ad 13.1.1

        Just waiting for the Green-orchestrated counter-protest to the Morrinsville one.
        No? Never thought to do that? With Greenpeace and Forest and bird on tap?

        Clearly too hard to think about winning. Best to leave that to fate and making sure ideals don’t get dirty in the actual week that it counts.

        • Union city greens 13.1.1.1

          What about a labour organised protest?
          After all, environmentalism and clean rivers is also a nuclear generational moment, isn’t it?
          Or is action on that a ‘borrowed’ ideal too far when heartland votes are up for grabs?

          • Ad 13.1.1.1.1

            Definitely.
            That would be great.
            No point complaining about proxy-protests this week.

            You either fight right back or you are likely to lose.

            • Union city greens 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Great! Just get out and work then.

              • Ad

                I have been “getting out and working” for the Labour Party since 1999. And have been doing so for this one as well.

                • Union city greens

                  Looking forward to the invite to attend your labour party sponsored Morrinsville rebuttal.

                  • Ad

                    Nope-it’s up to the Labour Party itself to figure out something with its proxies.

                    • Union city greens

                      Practice what you preach? Crack on. Put me down for a +6

                    • mickysavage

                      USG I don’t think you are getting the gist of Ad’s comments.

                    • Union city greens

                      Like the recent ones where he’s been telling the greens to get out and work, I got the meaning of his post @13.1.1 just fine.

                      It seems he doesn’t really have an answer to a dose of his own medicine.

            • Anne 13.1.1.1.1.2

              You either fight right back or you are likely to lose.

              Absolutely. The relentless positivity goes only so far. I noted Ardern’s response to the farmers’ protest was so low key it almost didn’t exist. That will be interpreted as weakness and give others the impetus to also take her down over the next few days.

              Come on Jacinda and team. If you want to be the govt. you have to give as good as you get.

              • Incognito

                There are many ways of ‘fighting’ back. A ‘macho male’ approach is the aggressive confrontational attack. Another way is to deflect or putting the other off-balance (as in martial arts), e.g. by taking their arguments one or more steps further than they are willing to go (reductio ad absurdum). It all depends on your goal, the situation, and what suits you best on how you best deal with your ‘adversary’.

        • Muttonbird 13.1.1.2

          Bit hard for ordinary working people. These farmers have such a cushy life they can take a whole day off to protest against a better New Zealand. They can do this because of the cheap labour they’ve got Nats to import for them from the Philippines.

          • Ad 13.1.1.2.1

            That’s just weak-ass excuses. And saying that farmers have “a cushy life” is the kind of dumb dismissiveness that the right use against the left. The Greens can figure that one out. In televisual terms, you don’t get more “ordinary working people” imagery than small-town Morrinsville. Arderrn is now having to defend-defend-defend with 4 days to go.

            • Muttonbird 13.1.1.2.1.1

              Listen to yourself. All doom and gloom now, when 2 weeks ago you were saying it was all over and Labour had won. With you being so close to the heart of Labour campaigning and being ‘so good’ at strategy, why hasn’t Andrew Kirton and the rest taken your suggestion of a march down Queen Street seriously?

              Also, if you think the farmers of Morrinsville are ordinary people in the context of today’s New Zealand then you are more out of touch than I thought. They are among the elite of New Zealand right now.

              • Ad

                The election has changed. Tactics need to change. You’ve seen it from Labour, National, and the Greens. It’s not unusual when it’s this tight.

                Labour need to think and act out of this one fast i.e. hours not days. Not enough to rely on one farmer with a dumb poster to make them look dumb on tv. Labour need to respond with more than Ardern – who placed per personal credibility on her Morrisonville origins.

  14. Tanz 14

    He is simply stating the unvarnished truth, as is Labourite Brian Edwards, re tax.

    • In Vino 14.1

      Tanz, on this website you are making Ad look bad.
      And Edwards seems to have wandered some way from the left.

  15. Michael Shanahan 15

    For a working person with no kids National’s tax cut policy signals where they are at. The combination of removing the Independent Earner Tax Credit and the upward shift in the $14000 threshold leaves me (earning $43,000 a year) with an extra $1 a week. Or anyone earning up to $48,000.
    Someone in my circumstances but earning $52000 a year or more gets $20 a week extra

    I love how this was reported on NewsHub in May, presumably just regurgitating Joyce’s press release.

    “Budget 2017: Tax changes to benefit every working Kiwi…
    Tax thresholds change from $14,000 to $22,000 and from $48,000 to $52,000
    Those in the $22,000 bracket will get a $10.77 tax reduction a week, those on $52,000 will get $20.38
    Independent Earner Tax Credit has been scrapped, those claiming it will be fully compensated”
    http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2017/05/budget-2017-tax-changes-to-benefit-every-working-kiwi.html

    • Pat 15.1

      those are the sort of examples labour should be highlighting eveytime they are interviewed….lets talk about tax (cuts) that isn’t (arnt).

  16. John Stone 16

    Why is the family home exempt fro Capital Gains Tax? It will cost a lot enforcing it and favors the wealthy?

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    by the Council of Disobedient Women   We call on the Council of Trade Unions to show some fortitude and take a stand with your sisters. Unionists know that there is a material world, otherwise workers could simply identify out of poverty. They could declare themselves Well Paid. Why stop ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Sophistry and bullshit
    I spent some time reading the Regulatory Impact Statement and Bill of Rights Act advice for the government's odious control order scheme today. I am not impressed with either of them. Starting with the RIS, it is built on some pretty questionable assumptions. For example:Unless individuals have been convicted of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • I’m so fly, I’m #NoFly!
    #NoFly: Walking the talk on climate change, by Shaun Hendy. BWB Texts, 2019. Reviewed by Robert McLachlan In June 2018, Swede Maja Rosén founded We stay on the ground with a pledge not to fly in 2019, and a goal of persuading 100,000 other Swedes to join her. In August, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Punishing the young
    We all know that NZ First is a party of and for old people who hate the young. But they've topped their previous pedophobia with a proposal that all young people be forced to do 100 hours community work:NZ First wants all young people to do 100 hours of community ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Journalism, clickbait, & ideas of classical beauty – but not science
    A couple days ago the NZ Herald published a story with the headline, “Science says Bella Hadid is world’s most beautiful woman“, and followed up with the ridiculous statement that Supermodel Bella Hadid has been declared as the world’s most beautiful woman following a scientific study into what constitutes as ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    3 days ago
  • Is Simon’s Smile Sustainable?
    A Sustainable Proposition: With as much as 18 percent of the electorate declaring itself “undecided” about who to vote for, there is obviously plenty of space for a party like former Green Party member, Vernon Tava's, about-to-be-launched "Sustainable NZ Party" to move into. The most hospitable political territory for such ...
    3 days ago
  • What the actual Hell?
    Keir Starmer has hinted that Labour might vote in favour of the Johnson government's shoddy deal, with the proviso that a second referendum is attached:Speaking to BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show, he said: “We will see what that looks like but it makes sense to say that by whatever ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: Dealer’s Choice, an oral history from Planet 1994
    In 1994, I was the editor for an issue of Planet magazine focused on cannabis, its culture and the prospects for the end of its prohibition. Part of that issue was an interview with 'Ringo', an experienced cannabis dealer.I recently posted my essay from that issue, and I figured it ...
    5 days ago
  • The invasion of women’s sports by men: some facts
    Dr Helen Waite, sports sociologist and former elite athlete, on the invasion of women’s sport by men and the anti-scientific and misogynist ideology used to rationalise it.   ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Remainers starting to sound like fascists
    As Brexit comes to a grisly conclusion (perhaps) people on all sides are saying intemperate and uwise things.  Some, like the Daly Mail, have been doing it for years.People as normally level headed as Jon Lansman are calling for automatic deselection of MPs who vote against a (likely) Labour three ...
    5 days ago
  • Labour MPs supporting Johnson’s turd-sandwich deal?
    I find this unbelievable:
    I've got one source saying more Labour MPs than expected are mulling whether to vote for the deal - including names who were not on the letter to Juncker and Tusk— Emilio Casalicchio (@e_casalicchio) 17 October 2019 I've compiled a list of possible reasons why Labour ...
    6 days ago
  • Why do we need control orders again?
    On Wednesday, the government was loudly telling us that it needed to legislate to allow it to impose "control orders" - effectively a parole regime, but imposed without charge, prosecution, conviction or real evidence - on suspected terrorists because they couldn't be prosecuted for their supposed crimes. Today, it turns ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Bullshitting the Minister
    On Monday, the Hit and Run inquiry heard from NZDF's former director of special operations, who claimed that the defence Minister knew everything about the Operation Burnham raid. Today, the inquiry heard from that (former) Minister - and it turns out that he didn't know nearly as much as NZDF ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Speaker: Extinction Rebellion is not a cult (but ecstasy for the people)
    Yoga gurus and cult leaders – I’ve seen a few. Two weeks ago, I unknowingly joined an alleged new-age cult at the Kāpiti coast, together with a giant kraken and some neatly dressed pensioners who would make any book club proud.They were among the two hundred people of all ages ...
    6 days ago
  • We need to bring the police under control
    The last decade has seen a trend of increasing weapons availability to police. Assault rifles. Tasers on every hip. Guns in cars. And following the march 15 massacre, pistols on every hip, all over the country. At the same time, its also seen an increase in the abuse of force: ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • If you can’t measure it, does it exist?
    In the last couple of weeks, I’ve been busy preparing for our summer paper on Science Communication. Looking for something amusing about ‘risk’ in science, I came across this neat xkcd.com cartoon about why so many people come knocking on my door (or phoning me, or emailing me) desperately wanting ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    6 days ago
  • Swinson’s swithering
    Jo Swinson is doing even worse at this Being Sensible lark that I'd thought.  I've just become aware of the following utterance
    .@KayBurley presses Lib Dem leader @joswinson on whether she would agree to a #Brexit deal 'no matter how bad a deal it is' as long as it had ...
    7 days ago
  • Women’s rights, trans ideology and Gramsci’s morbid symptoms
    by John Edmundson The International Socialist Organisation (ISO) have recently reposted a February article, by Romany Tasker-Poland, explaining ISO’s position in the “trans rights” debate.  It is available on their website and on their Facebook Page.  The article sets out to explain why “socialists support trans rights”.  It reads more ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • We need to take guns off police
    Today's IPCA report of police criminality: a police officer unalwfully tasered a fleeing suspect who posed no threat to anyone:The police watchdog has found an officer unlawfully tasered an Auckland man who broke his ankle jumping off a balcony to escape arrest. [...] To avoid arrest, the man jumped over ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • “Bringing kindness back”
    "Auckland City Mission: 10% of Kiwis experiencing food insecurity", RNZ, 16 October 2019:About half a million people are experiencing food insecurity, according to new research from the Auckland City Mission. Food insecurity, or food poverty, is defined as not having enough appropriate food. The City Mission said over the last ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Press Release: “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance b...
    Media Statement for Immediate Release 16th October 2019 “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers Despite comments from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers—Herald Newspaper Tuesday Oct 15th–there is very little evidence ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    7 days ago
  • Ever-So-Slightly Bonkers: Simon Bridges Plays To His Base.
    Would You Buy A Used Propaganda Video From This Man? Bridges and the National Party’s strategists have discovered that the ideas and attitudes considered acceptable by today’s editors and journalists are no longer enforceable. The rise and rise of the Internet and the social media platforms it spawned means that ...
    1 week ago
  • Asking for food
    There is plenty of evidence of the way the business mentality has permeated every level of society since the recrudescence of market liberalism 35 years ago. You only need to think of how citizens in need of help from their government, their state, their country, are now routinely described as ...
    Opposable ThumbBy Unknown
    1 week ago
  • Forty years of change in the jobs Kiwi do and the places they call home
    John MacCormick Over the last 40 years, New Zealanders – and people in other countries – have experienced big changes in the jobs they do and where they live and work. These changes include: a decline in manufacturing jobs an increase in jobs in ‘information-intensive’ industries (which are better paid ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Protecting Fresh Waterways in Aotearoa/NZ: The Strong Public Health Case
    Nick Wilson, Leah Grout, Mereana Wilson, Anja Mizdrak, Phil Shoemack, Michael Baker Protecting waterways has the benefits of: (1) protecting water from hazardous microbes; (2) minimising cancer risk and other problems from nitrates in water; (3) avoiding algal blooms that are hazardous to health; (4) protecting mahinga kai uses (cultural ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Massey University triggered to rebrand
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
    After a brief dalliance with 'hard Revoke' it looks like the Lib Dems are changing ground on on Brexit, with leader Jo Swinson reverting to calling for a second referendum on Johnson's deal.The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s speech requesting that any deal brought back from Brussels ...
    1 week ago
  • An odious bill
    The government has decided that someone has done Something Bad. But despite their belief, there seems to be no evidence that they have actually broken the law. So the government's solution is to pass a retrospective law allowing them to be punished anyway, on a lower standard of proof. If ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz There is a lot of discussion on the benefits of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
    I came across this song quite by accident. If it isn't one of Greta Thunberg's favourites - it should be.Video courtesy of YouTube.This post is exclusive to Bowalley Road. ...
    1 week ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
    Thanks to a report from the Acting Inspector General of Intelligence and Security following a complaint by Nicky Hager, we have come to find out that the SIS illegally spied on Mr. Hager on behalf of the NZDF after publication of Hager’s 2011 book, Other People’s Wars. The NZDF justified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
    COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING MYTH 1: Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate. FACT: The HadCRUT3 surface temperature index, produced by the Hadley Centre of the UK Met Office and the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, shows warming to 1878, cooling to 1911, ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    1 week ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Collins crushes climate
    An essay by Judith Collins MP reported on Carbon News yesterday seems to show an alarming shift in attitude within the National Party. Collins argues against the Zero Carbon Bill, the Paris Agreement, and downplays the magnitude of climate impacts. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015 and ratified ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
    A list of indicators of bad science – many of these are found in articles promoted by anti-fluoride activists. Anti-fluoride activists have been pouring money into a scaremongering campaign warning pregnant women not to drink fluoridated water. They claim fluoride will lower the IQ of their future child. Fluoride ...
    1 week ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
    The Royal Commission on abuse in care is very significant for the disability community. For many decades last century, thousands of disabled children, and adults who managed to survive, were locked away from families and communities. This was not for anything they had done, but for the perceived threat their ...
    1 week ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
      “There can be no such thing as kaupapa Māori political parties or politics in Aotearoa” (Willie Jackson, Labour Party (2017). Māori TV, General/List Election Special) I begin with that claim because at the time, I was confounded at first that it fell out of Willie Jackson’s mouth, and then ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago

  • Government to progress Control Orders for community safety
    The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill will have its first reading in Parliament today, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. “The control orders Bill will mean our community is better protected from the risks of the very small number of New Zealand citizens who have engaged in terrorism related activities overseas. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • World-first plan for farmers to reduce emissions
    The Government and farming sector leaders have agreed to a world-first partnership to reduce primary sector emissions in one of the most significant developments on climate action in New Zealand's history. Today farming leaders and the Government announced a plan to join forces to develop practical and cost-effective ways to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • More homes where they are needed
    More houses for homeless New Zealanders are being opened today in Tauranga by Associate Housing Minister Kris Faafoi. Six 2-bedroom quality units are being opened at 878 Cameron Road by Minister Faafoi and Accessible Properties, a local Community Housing Provider (CHP). Accessible Properties now provides more than 1,700 community housing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • Minister of Finance and Sport and Recreation to visit Japan and Vietnam
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson departs tomorrow for events and meetings in Japan and Vietnam.  While in Japan, he will discuss economic and fiscal issues including meeting with the Minister of Finance, Taro Aso, and Minister of Economic and Fiscal Policy, Yasutoshi Nishimura. He will meet with the Minister of Education, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Dashboard tracks housing progress
    The Government’s Housing Dashboard released today confirms record numbers of state houses are under construction and shows the Government build programme is gaining momentum.  “After nine years of inaction, and a hands-off attitude from the previous government we’re starting to see things move in the right direction for housing,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Ministerial Statement on the International Convention Centre fire
    Mr Speaker, I wish to make a ministerial statement relating to the Auckland fire. The Government is closely monitoring the situation with the fire at the NZ International Convention Centre and is thankful that everyone is now safe. Firefighters are doing an incredible job managing the fire and bringing it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Government invests in Te Reo, environmental data research
    The Government is investing in ambitious research that will digitise Te Reo, grow the low-carbon protein efficient aquaculture industry, help interpret environmental trends, and large data sets says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The four projects range from teaching Siri to speak Te Reo to crunching large environmental ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government announces next steps as part of a comprehensive plan to fix skills gap
    A new education-to-employment brokerage service to strengthen connections between local employers and schools. Funding for more trades focused ‘speed-dating’ events to connect schools with employers. Promotional campaign to raise profile of vocational education. The Government is taking action to increase the number of young people taking up vocational education and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Corrections Amendment Bill passes third reading
    A Bill to improve prison security and ensure the fair, safe, and humane treatment of people in prison while upholding public safety has passed its third reading. Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the Corrections Amendment Bill makes a number of changes to ensure the Corrections Act 2004 is fit for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ngāi Tahu CEO appointed to NZ-China Council
    Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, has selected Arihia Bennett MNZM, Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. The New Zealand-China Council (the Council) was established in 2012 as a New Zealand led and funded organisation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Southern Response claims move to EQC
    Responsibility for processing the small number of Southern Response claims still to be settled will be transferred to EQC by the end of the year. “As claim numbers reduce, it no longer makes sense for the Crown to have two organisations processing the remaining Canterbury claims,” Grant Robertson says. “Since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bowel screening starts in Whanganui
    Health Minister David Clark is encouraging Whanganui residents to take up the opportunity for free bowel screening, which can detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat.   Over the next two years 12,000 Whanganui locals, aged 60 to 74 will be invited to participate in the National Bowel Screening ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific Peoples Minister to attend Our Ocean Conference in Norway
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, heads to Oslo today to represent New Zealand at the sixth Our Ocean Conference, which is being hosted by the Norwegian Government from the 23-24 October. “The Our Ocean Conference mobilises real action on issues like marine plastic pollution and the impacts of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures Conference: Connection...
    Session 4: Pacific Connectivity – Youth, Media and New Opportunities   Kia ora tatou katoa and Warm Pacific greetings to one and all. Representatives of Tainui, the local people of the land, or manawhenua – the indigenous peoples of this area – have welcomed you this morning in accordance with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
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