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Go Bus Lockout; Hypocrites Ngai Tahu and Tainui Screw Workers

Written By: - Date published: 1:31 pm, November 19th, 2018 - 70 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, boycott, business, capitalism, class war, Economy, jobs, Unions, wages, workers' rights, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , ,

Two iwi who you would have hoped would know better are bullying bus drivers in the Waikato.

Council of Trade Unions President Richard Wagstaff has called for donations to the welfare fund for FIRST Union members who have been locked out by Tainui and Ngai Tahu owned Go Bus in the Waikato.

“This employer has cynically tried to tank driver’s incomes right before Christmas, because they dared to ask for a living wage,” Wagstaff says.

Go Bus is owned by the two well funded iwi, neither of whom appears to give a shit about working people.

First Union divisional secretary Jared Abbott said it was time for Go Bus’ owners to get involved in the dispute.

“In any situation in an industrial dispute like this that escalates to this level, it’s time for the owners to step in and take some responsibility for what is going on.”

However, that may be a forlorn hope unless people rally behind the drivers. The CTU’s Richard Wagstaff points to the way forward:

“The next step is telling operators who tender for contracts by squeezing drivers’ wages and conditions, like Go Bus, Tranzit, Ritchies Murphy and Pavlovich, that commuters aren’t having it. Working people are firmly on the side of the drivers getting them safely around our towns and cities, and they support the living wage.”

We tend to go easy on iwi owned enterprises, however the reality is that they are capitalist businesses who will happily rip off their workers. Ironically, Ngai Tahu claim to be in favour of paying the Living Wage, though that is clearly bullshit. What they actually are in favour of is using economic violence against workers.

Council of Trade Unions Maori Vice President, Syd Keepa, says Go Bus has iwi members driving its buses and the union is calling for the two iwi to step in:

“The drivers, many of which whakapapa to the iwi that own Go Bus, are asking the iwi to step in and assist in a resolution with the company because the abysmal wages are having a depressing effect on the drivers’ wellbeing, their families and their respective communities. Ngai Tahu are a Living Wage employer, yet when their own people put their hand up for a decent rate they have been locked out.”

Please donate to the drivers. They and their families are going to need considerable help over the next few weeks. The website is: http://busfair.nz/donate/

Tainui can be contacted via fb here. Ngai Tahu’s fb is here.

Tell them they should be ashamed of themselves.

70 comments on “Go Bus Lockout; Hypocrites Ngai Tahu and Tainui Screw Workers ”

  1. Right on.

    “Living Wage Employer’ is being used as a white wash like unaudited ‘free range’ and ‘Forest Friendly’ etc.

    Apparently Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu has a living wage policy, but its subsidiaries are able to say ‘No’ we can’t/won’t do that.

    Which is a problem with all these things. its all about nice headlines not real life.

    Its like the great wages and health perks for google employees..the thing people don’t realise being that half the workforce at google are ‘Contractors’ who get diddly squat.

  2. adam 2

    For the love of God, how are average members of an Iwi responsible for the actions of leadership and boards – any different from other structures in society? That’s like saying all white people from Christchurch are responsible for Gerry Brownlee. Or other logical fallacies.

    Iwi, are made up of a lot of different hapū. To lump them all in one, is wooly settler
    thinking at best.

    You could have said the board of Ngāi Tahu holdings, which is a better description, or did you not want to mention that Chris Joblin as CEO of Taniue Holdings is a pākehā. Or is it simpler to indulge in a bit of hard right race baiting?

    You know I’m hard core pro workers rights, but that means fingering the right people, not some faceless corporation or equally valueless, some faceless iwi. Doing things like this don’t help the workers on the ground, especially when the real people making the decisions get a free pass. You know like Mike Sang, Allan Hickford and the rest of the management team.

    • bwaghorn 2.1

      Didn’t you get the memo . In the true left’s eyes all Maori, woman and LGBT are perfect people who are beyond reproach and if you are maori lesbian you are actually a God. (I made that last bit up for a laugh)

      • Michelle 2.1.1

        yes we are so perfect b waghorn we are filling our prisons but it if your a rich arab you can get away with murder and people will shake you hand and bow as they are fucken gutless and only care about money

  3. SaveNZ 3

    Sad. It also makes a mockery of wanting jobs and opportunities for Iwi, if the wages offered by iwi are too low.

    I’m also disgusted when iwi don’t fish their quota themselves but lease the quota to foreign slave traders to harvest the fish, and then wonder why Maori don’t have job opportunities.

    Same for horticulture, same for farming, aka not creating jobs for Maori but instead getting cheaper migrant workers in.

    Maori own 15% of the NZ economy.

    They could be leading the way for their people instead of just trying to follow the neoliberal way which has a few capitalist winners and a lot of losers.

    Obviously I think that ALL NZ business should be on living wages.

    I’m also not sure that the $20 p/h of living wage is enough if you live in Auckland, how do you live on that amount with a family, a dog kennel?

    Apparently the affordable housing in Wellington is now up to $700 p/w. The figures for living wage need updating.

  4. Tiger Mountain 4

    an echo of the 90s–“Brown Table”, Dr Elizabeth Rata’s “Neo Tribalists”, and John Tamihere’s West Auckland Trust’s then reactionary attitude to unions, but the fact is the small layer of class collaborative, Māori capitalist elites must be called and dealt with like any other exploitative employer

    I take Adam’s point though, TRP’s opener does resemble collective punishment rather than focusing on the specific villains

    the time line alone of this scenario shows the employer to be seriously taking the piss, support the drivers!! financially and on their pickets!!

  5. Bewildered 5

    Great to see iwi standing up to mafia like financial stand over tactics from a union whose members are a minority at the bus company

    • In Vino 5.1

      Bewildered – would you like to work for the miserable, demeaning rates those drivers are getting? I don’t think you have even thought about such matters. No doubt you worked super-hard and made meritorious decisions so that you could deservedly live comfortably. Nauseating.

      • Bewildered 5.1.1

        Yep been there done that, learnt quickly low end wage jobs was not great so did something about it, thanks for asking Vino albeit cliche question from some one with a victim mentality

        • Bewildered 5.1.1.1

          Put this to you Vino, If Union next strategy was to collect fares and keep it, you ok with that, no different not collecting, both are stealing from company and iwi shareholders

          • In Vino 5.1.1.1.1

            Victim mentality? Silly wishful thinking. You think you are special because you ‘did something about it’? A self-made man who worships his creator?
            As it happens, I have a Master’s degree, and am still working part-time in the profession which has afforded me a good life. In no way am I a victim. I am damned fortunate – much more so than the poor bastards being exploited for less than $20 an hour: demeaning and destructive of human dignity.
            Your foolish misunderstanding of the Union’s tactic is utterly risible. One of the few ways they can affect their mingy employers is to refuse to collect fares, which is actually a help to the public they are supposed to be serving. Your idea that they would steal that money for themselves is as dumb as the proposition that they are stealing money that they are not collecting.
            Stealing it would be if they did collect the money and kept it for themselves. Refusing to collect it is industrial action, not theft.
            Stop kidding yourself.

            • Bewildered 5.1.1.1.1.1

              Only one masters degree , you got a bit of catching up re getting off your backside re my background, sacrifices and risks I took ( if it’s a competition) Not collecting fares is tantamount to theft as they are incurring cost on the company while refusing to recover what is due to the cover those costs The company is a business not a charity re your point to serve the public Dont know if bus company are pricks or not but suggest if you don’t like the company or pay, leave and do something else don’t rely on a morally bankrupt union

              • In Vino

                Piffle. However great your self-esteem, you are not empowered to change the English language. Collins Concise Dictionary: ‘Theft – the taking of another person’s property for oneself…’ Refusing to collect the fares is not taking the fares for themselves: it is a form of striking (industrial action as I said) and the company is entitled to dock pay when such limited strike-actions are taken. Get your definitions right, and stop using your own wishful thinking to vilify unions. Such behaviour is both academically and morally bankrupt on your part.

  6. Yes well I’m not a fan of this bullshit.

    First Union divisional secretary Jared Abbott said it was time for Go Bus’ owners, Tainui and Ngāi Tahu to get involved in the dispute.

    “In an industrial dispute like this that escalates to this level, it’s time for the owners to step in and take some responsibility for what is going on.”

    https://i.stuff.co.nz/national/108692358/tensions-escalate-in-bus-driver-wage-wrestle-affecting-buses-across-hamilton

    Pity the union is going this way. Good to see you’re trotting out the lines – solidarity

    • Tiger Mountain 6.1

      a bad boss, is a bad boss, the timeline of this low pay and disrespect issue is appalling enough in itself, not sure what offence you have taken here marty mars

      • marty mars 6.1.1

        Iwi are shareholders – they aren’t management. Sure go after shareholders but please, dressing it up as bad Māori is not needed. That is my issue.

        E.g. “We tend to go easy on iwi owned enterprises, however the reality is that they are capitalist businesses who will happily rip off their workers. Ironically, Ngai Tahu claim to be in favour of paying the Living Wage, though that is clearly bullshit. What they actually are in favour of is using economic violence against workers.”

        • WeTheBleeple 6.1.1.1

          Hi Marty

          I am here to learn. Forgive my ignorance where I’m ill informed feel free to inform. I have a question:

          I learned of the bottom up decision making at the Marae, often a lengthy and laborious process in which all voices get to be heard. And then each Marae is heard, and so on up – This is impressive. This, alongside of Kaitiakitanga (was deeply touched learning about this) seems to me to be a way to govern both sustainably and inclusively.

          Do iwi work with these overarching principles now?

          • marty mars 6.1.1.1.1

            Iwi organisations often have a combo. Western and Māori approach but I think they stive to follow their tikanga in alignment with traditional values albeit manifested in modern ways sometimes. People get elected to roles, they then elect other roles – pretty much like any organisation imo.

            It’s hard to generalise but where I’ve interacted the kaupapa of trying to represent the people is strong and that led directly to adjustments to get more alignment with what we were trying to do. It is complicated but mostly the hearts as in the right place within iwi organisations which doesn’t preclude maliciousness, corruption, greed and stupidness.

            • WeTheBleeple 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Thanks Marty I appreciate it. With that said I’m tending to think some Iwi have some right wing style leadership in place, but in check. If that is correct, yay, if not, watch closely for snakes.

              They do very well in NZ conditions.

              • Well the snakes aren’t in the iwi. They lurk around outside with attacks and bullshit. Their agenda has nothing to do with Māori or rights it’s just bigotry and pale reflections of mana.

                • WeTheBleeple

                  OK, that sounds like good news for Maori autonomy.

                  Sorry about the bigots. Being raised with racism in rural NZ, it’s also hard not to overstep in the other direction and sound like a patronizing twat.

                  I liked that someone called me on some shit in a marae setting. I call people on theirs. To me it’s a way to grow through strengthening our weaknesses. To (most) euro people I’ve delivered feedback, despite their asking for it, I’m ‘difficult’.

                  I am a bit. I’ve taken that on too 😉

                  I often wonder how much of our viciousness online is the lack of ability to properly address real life issues in our community/family settings. To be heard, but also to hear others so understanding is reached. But the internet is the wild west, not home. It would be nice to have a steam whistle on our heads, to release each morning. Meditation is so boring… 😀

                  The Standard stands apart in some of the debate it generates. The haters can disrupt it, I, and others can be dicks about it, but there’s plenty of hope for this model of discourse where actual debate is encouraged.

                  I digress, again.

                  • The Standard can be a great place full of cool people. I’m just me as I think you are you – if we aren’t pissing someone off it’s probably cos we’re asleep.

                    Kia kaha.

        • Tiger Mountain 6.1.1.2

          as per my post #4, I address that issue, the fact remains that Māori have a class relationship with capitalist society too, in conjunction with their distinct cultural existence

          while TRP has effectively “collectively punished” all members of those overall tribal groupings named, which is not a good thing, there is also a collective responsibility for owners and the individuals on Boards to front up

          • marty mars 6.1.1.2.1

            I agree that the drivers should be paid decently and that the company are scum for what they have done. I even agree that shareholders are accountable. However generalised derogatory statements against a group of people are not on – even at the behest of some union rep. But par for the course and as one of the denigrated ones i’ll just get over it as usual. But just reread the headline and imagine that you are being described that way. It’s fucken bullshit.

            • te reo putake 6.1.1.2.1.1

              If you don’t like being described that way, then do something about it, Marty. If you’re a shareholder, you’re either part of the problem or part of the solution. Who have you contacted to voice your concerns?

  7. Morrissey 7

    Hardly surprising that the leadership of iwi are hostile to workers’ rights. They’re National Party activists, and not representative of the people they purport to represent. Ngati Tuwharetoa is also dominated by a National Party clique.

    Back in January 2014 we had a real argument on this forum about the National Party-dominated Ngai Tahu leadership….

    Open mike 06/01/2014

    • DJ Ward 7.1

      Don’t iwi make there own decisions about leadership. Maybe they understand going with policy of profitable business must take precedent over socialism. Without profitability assets are eroded and socialism is impossible. The assets get squandered with trying to please everybody.

      Hence Buisiness minded iwi leadership.

      • mauī 7.1.1

        Profiteers are experts in asset squandering. No wonder the socialists have to step in and build things like state housing and rail back into a viable business.

  8. Ed 8

    Class war is about economics.

    • DJ Ward 8.1

      Is it?
      It was about rights. Landowners could vote while the serfs couldn’t. The upper class could get loans, the serfs couldn’t. The upper class controlled law enforcement, the serfs were subject to it.

      Anyway NZ doesn’t have a class system. Anybody can start a Buisiness, get educated, by property, and the poor can go to the same schools as millionaires children.

      • Kevin 8.1.1

        Can’t all have degrees bro. Someone still has to do the shit jobs but I think it’s a fair expectation the they won’t be treated like shit in the process.

  9. DJ Ward 9

    What’s not being provided is the figures for the profitability of the buses. Is it already a subsidised service.

    If the service the bus company provides in its own right is profitable then movement in improving pay to a living wage is appropriate.
    If it’s a subsidised service then more subsidy would be required to provide the living wage.
    Or you force the closing of the bus service due to inevitable backruptcy from losses. Then nobody has a job.
    Socialism is not exempt from the reality of capitalism as it requires other people’s money to work.

    Who pays for the pay rise.

    • In Vino 9.1

      ‘Other people’s money’… What rubbish. Capitalism exploits other people’s labour, and regards underpayment for that labour as a virtue for the benefit of greedy shareholders.

    • gsays 9.2

      Maybe, just maybe, that thinking- “If the service the bus company provides in its own right is profitable then movement in improving pay to a living wage is appropriate” is around the wrong way.
      For a century or more, the way to profit was cut and suppress wages and conditions.
      Turn it around, pay a living wage and perhaps productivity increases, less sick days, less ‘churn’, happy employees in the community.
      You know, stuff that doesn’t show up immediately on a balance sheet.

      • DJ Ward 9.2.1

        That’s inherent to successful capitalism.
        Bad bosses get bad outcomes more often.
        Good bosses get good outcomes more often.

        In this case it appears the bus company is not profitable.
        Therefore there is nothing to offer the owners or workers.

        If you went back a century I would suggest behavour towards workers has vastly improved over time.
        Most poverty is being caused by the rental market.

  10. SHG 10

    Shareholders in a business don’t get to make management decisions. However I, as a member of the iwi, will request an explanation from my Runaka rep.

    • Jum 10.1

      That depends on how powerful the shareholder is, SHG.

    • Thanks, SHG. This attack on workers is being done in your name, even if it is done without your knowledge or consent. I hope others will also question whether a lockout truly reflects the values of your iwi.

  11. Jum 11

    If a business can’t pay a living wage, it shouldn’t be in business.
    If a business wants to start up and has a limited budget, but can help workers get a job, then that business needs to offer them something like shares in the company and bonuses from any result, for taking a chance on that business.

  12. Ad 12

    TRP in your view what’s the chances the union will win this one?

    • Well, they all get settled in the end. The last big lockout was Talleys AFFCO and the company lost that (in court, and after some time). Prior to that, I recall Woolworths locked out their distribution workers across the country. That ended with a total humiliation for the Aussie owned company after six weeks on the picket line. The CEO had to quit.

      I suspect the GoBus drivers will get solid financial support from unions and the public, so the plan to starve them into submission isn’t likely to work. So I guess it’ll go on until the management get told by their shareholders to pull their heads in.

      • Ad 12.1.1

        I would just love to see you do a post on some of these war stories, particularly about how the workers won and the bosses lost.

        I’m sure I don’t get enough of them through the mainstream media.

        It would sure be encouraging to hear of recent wins.

        Maybe:

        The Worker: A Year In Review.

        • te reo putake 12.1.1.1

          Excellent idea, Ad! I’ll see what can be done. I also think we should look at some TS reader awards (book tokens or the like) for best contributions over the year, funniest comment etc. It’s good to celebrate!

          I was mulling over a couple of the comments on this post this morning and it occurred to me that solidarity was a defining characteristic of being left, in a similar way to looking after No 1 is for the right. It’s solidarity internally (in a workplace) and externally (among the wider population) that wins. The external pressure is vital, as economic pressure is what forces bosses to compromise. And nothing sends alarm bells ringing in a board room faster than losing market share, which was the key to winning the Progressive (Woolworth’s) blue a decade ago.

          With GoBus, I would say pressure from the Waikato bus using community, combined with disquiet from iwi members about the thuggery of their business leaders will tip the balance. I certainly hope so, anyway.

  13. peterlepaysan 13

    Most bus companies, large or small, servicing regular routes work shifts, both short and split.

    A very large cohort of these drivers have another income source, usually superannuation.

    If all the superannuitant drivers working for commercial bus companies struck the country woul be in in deep strife.

    Go Bus has the cheek to ask for a subsidy from regional or central govt. They already get a subsidy via superannuation which allows the bus companies to pay crap wages to superannuitant drivers.

    Time for a WSU, Working Superannuitants Union.

    Central govt could get involved by abolishing secondary income tax on employed superannuitants.

    I do not hear any noises from NZ 1st or age concern. They will blame immigrants for low wages. Greedy management always have clean hands. Yeah right!

  14. Bill 14

    The drivers should never have stated (read elsewhere) that they would not collect fares. You do that shit? (It’s a legitimate act.) Don’t state it as an intent. Just do it.

    • They’re stuck with having to let the company know, Bill. The ERA currently requires all strike action to be advised and detailed in advance. If the union didn’t give that notice and the drivers refused to take fares, I would say sackings and prosecutions would swiftly follow.

  15. patricia bremner 15

    Lockouts should be illegal, or at least liable for the same notice terms as strikes.

    The government needs to issue warnings requiring businesses to repay any government subsidy for the period of deliberate interruption of the service. ie lockout.

    It is classic ‘do as I say not as I do.’

    Semantics about shareholders or iwi are red herrings. It is about fairness.

    Workers should be paid a living wage…. end of.

  16. David Mac 16

    To win the contract to operate a bus network the winning tender would need to be cut to the bone. Operating costs calculated with pittance wages and stretched maintenance schedules.

    In a heavily subsidised sector the situation doesn’t rest with the brand names over the door, it needs to rest with those that decided ‘Yep, lets go with this company’tribe/entity that can only realistically pay it’s drivers $15.00 per hour’.

  17. millsy 17

    Time for a return to buses being run and owned directly by the council methinks.

  18. Philj 18

    ‘Not offering a living wage’ … Does that make it a non living wage, or a dieing wage?

  19. UncookedSelachimorpha 19

    Good post, thanks TRP.

  20. Delia 20

    Well they are profiting off paying wages of $17.90 an hour, it is as simple as that.

  21. Takere 21

    “I shall fashion my own house. The support posts shall be of maahoe, patatee. The ridgepole of hinau. The inhabitants shall be raised on rengarenga and nurtured on kawariki.”
    Kiingi Taawhiao

    Maybe now is the time for another interpretation of what he meant by the whakatauki? Because, at the moment. I dont see any protection, sustenance, care, comfort & nuturing from the elitist establishment.

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    Prof John D. Potter* This blog briefly surveys the emerging scientific evidence on the longer-term burden of symptoms and disease in survivors of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of these symptoms point to damage in the brain and heart. These long-term harms add to the wide range of other reasons for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    3 days ago
  • Going High, Going Low: An Assessment Of The First Leaders’ Debate.
    Uncrushed: Jacinda Ardern knew exactly what was expected of her in the first Leaders' Debate. Labour’s dominant position, three weeks out from the general election, is constructed out of the admiration and gratitude of hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders who, more often than not, vote National.  Nothing she said ...
    4 days ago
  • The smokefree policies of political parties: Do they care about people who smoke?
    George Thomson*, Nick Wilson, Janet Hoek, Andrew Waa, Richard Edwards In this time of Covid-19, helping people who smoke to quit their addiction has an even greater importance. Smokers are more vulnerable to many harmful health effects, including severe effects from the virus. Policies that support people who smoke to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • The Fog Of Economic Policy Is Starting To Clear…
    Bryan Bruce, https://www.facebook.com/www.redsky.tv, 19 September 2020 National’s economic policy of temporary tax cuts yesterday proved, if proof be needed, that they are unapologetic neoliberals. While their claim that with more money in their pockets people will spend more might sound attractive, the reality is that tax cuts always benefit the ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #38, 2020
    Highlighted article: Carbon pricing and planetary boundaries  Engström et al take what might be called a systems approach to evaluating carbon pricing, taking into a account various economic sectors affected by and affecting paying for emissions. The conclusions are overall a rare pleasant surprise— a feature predicated on cooperation.  Abstract: ...
    4 days ago
  • Humans ignite almost every wildfire that threatens homes
    Nathan Mietkiewicz, National Ecological Observatory Network and Jennifer Balch, University of Colorado Boulder CC BY-ND Summer and fall are wildfire season across the western U.S. In recent years, wildfires have destroyed thousands of homes, forced hundreds of thousands of people to evacuate and exposed tens of millions to harmful ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: China steps up
    China has increased its climate change ambition, and set a target to be carbon-neutral by 2060: China will reach carbon neutrality before 2060 and ensure its greenhouse gas emissions peak in the next decade, Xi Jinping has told the UN general assembly. “China will scale up its intended nationally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Humans have dealt with plenty of climate variability
    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 How much climate variability have humans dealt with since we ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • Indigenous perspectives on unrestricted access to genomic data
    By Genomics Aotearoa researcher Maui Hudson, University of Waikato It is vital that genomics research respects genomic data and genetic heritage from indigenous communities. Genomics research is a rapidly growing field of study, and there is a strong push to make the huge amount of data being produced open ...
    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
    4 days ago
  • Terrible luck: lockdowns on learning and youth job prospects
    What is bad luck? Bad luck is spilling spaghetti sauce down your shirt right before an important meeting. When the person in front of you gets the last seat on the bus, that’s bad luck. Bad luck is when it’s sunny outside, so you leave the house without a coat, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • Ian Powell: Does private healthcare threaten public healthcare in New Zealand?
    Is the private health system impacting negatively on the public health system? Health commentator Ian Powell evaluates a recent NZ Herald article by Natalie Akoorie (“Public v private healthcare: Moonlighting, skimming, duplication – should NZ do better”), and looks at how the dual system works, and concludes that the answer ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • A rabbit-hole election debate: So do you want more avocado orchards?
    We live in strange and unusual times. It’s been a century since we’ve endured a global pandemic like this, more than half a century since we’ve had economic woes like this. So maybe we got an opening election debate for the times - because that was a strange and unusual ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    5 days ago
  • LIVE: Jacinda Ardern vs. Judith Collins, First Debate
    Tonight, The Civilian will be live-blogging the first of too many debates between Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and National Party leader Judith Collins, and also the last fifteen minutes of the news. Be sure to tune in from 6:45pm for regular updates, which can be accessed by refreshing this page ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • Hundreds of Aucklanders arrested after illegal mass gathering on Harbour Bridge
    An enormous drive-in party, shown here, was held this morning on Auckland’s Harbour Bridge, where police were forced to intervene. Hundreds of Aucklanders were arrested this morning on public health grounds, after an apparent illegal mass gathering on the city’s Harbour Bridge. Police say hundreds of Aucklanders gathered in their ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • The Looming Fight.
    Social Distancing Be Damned - It's Jacinda! Shortly after ascending to Labour’s leadership, Jacinda described herself as a “pragmatic idealist”. It was an inspired oxymoron – packing into just two words the essence of the social-democrat’s dilemma. It was good to know that she knew what lay ahead of her. ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Moving faster
    Back in 2017, the UK announced that it would ban the sale of new fossil fuel vehicles by 2040. Its a basic climate change measure, aimed at reducing emissions by shifting the vehicle fleet to cleaner technologies. Now, in the wake of the pandemic, they're planning to bring it forward ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The Australian courts have had enough of refugee detention
    For the past decade, Australia has had a racist, anti-refugee policy. Those claiming refugee status are imprisoned without trial and left to rot in the hope they would "voluntarily" return to be tortured and murdered. When the courts have granted them visas, the government has immediately revoked them on racial ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Friction and the Anti-lock Braking System
    Yesterday afternoon I had to call on my car’s anti-lock braking system (ABS). For reasons best known to its driver, a car pulled out of a side road right in front of me while I was driving home after work, and I needed to stop in a hurry. I rather ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    5 days ago
  • The Inside Word: New Zealand Quarantine
    There are a fair few misconceptions about conditions within New Zealand’s Quarantine Hotels. Madeline Grant’s misplaced accusations being one prominent example, though she is not alone. Today, I thought I’d share the inside word, so to speak. A friend of mine has recently returned to New Zealand from overseas, and ...
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: ASA: Let’s not talk about this
    Last week, major newspapers carried a full-page ad as part of the campaign for a "No" vote to the referendum question about supporting the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill. The ad was authorised by the SAM NZ Coalition, which takes its name from a controversial American anti-cannabis group and includes ...
    5 days ago
  • This is not kind
    New Zealand has a serious homelessness problem, due to skyrocketing rents and a lack of state houses. One of the ways we stick a band-aid on it is to put people up in motels. Previously, they were charged full commercial rates, saddled with odious debt due to the government's failure ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Wokies are the establishment
    by Ani O’Brien In the absence of a better word with which to refer to the rabid activists who claim progressivism while demanding adherence to an increasingly prescriptive set of political beliefs, I call them “woke”. With its roots in Black American slang, the term originally denoted a person or ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • How to strengthen the post-isolation Covid rules
    Over the weekend, the Ministry of Health reported a case of Covid-19 in Auckland that is not related to the current Auckland cluster. Before we start to panic, here’s how I think the case happened and how we can strengthen our current border controls. The new Covid-19 case is someone ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    6 days ago
  • Neuralink and You: A Human-AI Symbiosis
    Becky Casale Elon Musk reckons his Neuralink brain implant is much more than a medical device–that one day it will drive a symbiosis between humans and artificial intelligence. “Good morning! I’m Dr Benedict Egg and I’ll be supervising your Neuralink insertion today. Do you have any questions?” “Yes, Doc. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Liam Hehir: Our obsession with American politics
    Many New Zealanders take a strong interest in US politics, with the death of Supreme Court Judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg being the latest example. Liam Hehir wonders if it very wise for New Zealanders to get so worked about it.   Many politically engaged New Zealanders are now furiously ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • COVID: Back to Level 1
    After stamping the Coronavirus out via strict lockdown between March and May, New Zealand went through a good three months without any community cases. Then a local outbreak in Auckland rather buggered things up last month. Auckland’s been in level 3 and level 2.5 for the past six weeks. ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Climate injustice
    Who's causing our skyrocketing emissions? As with most of our other problems, It's the rich: The wealthiest 1% of the world’s population were responsible for the emission of more than twice as much carbon dioxide as the poorer half of the world from 1990 to 2015, according to new ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Good riddance
    The border closure and resulting lack of foreign slave-workers is driving the fishing industry out of business: One fishing company is effectively out of business while others are bracing for large financial hits as the deepwater New Zealand industry, unable to get skilled foreign workers into the country, have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #38
    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... The tipping points at the heart of the climate crisis Many parts of the Earth’s climate system have been destabilised by ...
    6 days ago
  • Anyone for Collins?
    In the absence of national public opinion polls, we have had to make do in recent weeks with other guides to voter intentions. Those guides, such as the Auckland Central poll, the incidence of google enquiries and the responses to Vote Compass questions, have suggested, not unexpectedly, that Labour is ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • Crusher’s fiscal malfunction
    Crusher Collins - National Party leaderWe all know that the National Party is desperate to gain some traction during this election campaign and have been throwing pretty much everything at the Labour Party in order to try and undermine Jacinda Ardern and what the Coalition Government has achieved. But unfortunately ...
    7 days ago
  • Much of the commentariat’s reporting of the most recent GDP figure was misleading and unhelpful. The prize for the stupidest remark about the GDP figure for second quarter 2020 (2020Q2) released on Thursday (17 Sept) goes to Judith Collins, whose response to Grant Robertson’s comments indicated she did not ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Love and Hate as Complementary Revolutionary Acts
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh goloing@gmail.com (19/09/2020) Che Guevara said that a true revolutionary is motivated by love i.e. love of the oppressed, the poor, the children dying from preventable illnesses. This phrase of his is true but has been used by reformists and their more hippy wing have taken advantage ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #38
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Sep 13, 2020 through Sat, Sep 19, 2020 Editor's Choice Get to Net-Zero by Mid-Century? Even Some Global Oil and Gas Giants Think it Can Be Done A report by a ...
    1 week ago
  • Tax cuts for all!!! (except you, you, and you)
    With the National Party this week announcing a new policy of tax cuts to spice up the election campagin. MyThinks went along to the launch and afterwards we spoke to the party’s finance spokesperson Paul “Golden Touch” Goldsmith. MT: Thanks for speaking to us Mr Goldsmith. PG: No. Thank you. ...
    My ThinksBy boonman
    1 week ago
  • Great Waves Washing Over New Zealand
    Always to islanders danger Is what comes over the seas ‘Landfall in Unknown Seas’ (Allen Curnow)Six economic issues external to New Zealand, which will greatly impact upon us. 1.         The Diminishing Global Dominance of the US. Since 1941 America has dominated the world economically and politically. Probably it could ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand has role to play in resolving crisis on ‘geopolitical fault line’, Helen Clark says
    By Geoffrey Miller New Zealand should continue to champion human rights in Belarus amidst an ongoing crackdown on protests by the country’s regime, former Prime Minister Helen Clark says. Protests in the country often referred to as ‘Europe’s last dictatorship’ erupted after the country’s disputed presidential elections on August 9 ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    1 week ago
  • Euthanasia referendum: How to cut through the emotions
    Jacqui Maguire, registered clinical psychologist This podcast episode highlights how difficult it is to have effective conversations about euthanasia due to how polarised people’s views are. I’m a clinical psychologist, with a passion for science communication. In early 2020 I founded the podcast Mind Brew, with an aim to make psychological ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Why we need cameras on boats
    In case anyone needed further convincing, there's another example today of why we need cameras on fishing boats: reported seabird bycatch doubled during a camera trial: Commercial fishers operating off Auckland's coast around vulnerable seabirds are twice as likely to report accidentally capturing them when cameras are on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Graham Adams: The religious right’s campaign to spike the euthanasia referendum
    In the leadup to the euthanasia referendum, an array of conservative Christian political organisations is running an expensive campaign to sow doubt about the safety of assisted dying. Graham Adams argues that these religious forces know that Christian arguments aren’t convincing the public, but that it is in the public ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Opportunistic looting
    The National Party has spent the last six months acting horrified at the cost of supporting people through the pandemic and banging on about how the debt must be repaid. So what was their economic policy released today? Massive tax-cuts for the rich, of course! National has walked back ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Uncomfortable Choices.
    Dangerous Times: This will be the choice confronting those coming of age in the 2020s. Embrace Neoliberalism’s belief in racial and sexual equality; adopt its secular and scientific world view; and cultivate the technocratic, multicultural, global outlook required of those who keep the machinery of hyper-capitalism humming. Or, throw your ...
    1 week ago
  • Tony Burton: Covid and benefit payments
    It would be a great time to reform the benefit system, according to former Deputy Chief Economic Advisor at the Treasury, Tony Burton. He argues the complexity of benefit system means that it’s failing to achieve its difficult three core objectives, which form an “iron triangle”.   New Zealand’s benefit ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Talking tax: How to win support for taxing wealth
    Tax Justice UK, September 2020 Serious tax reform is on the political agenda for the first time in decades due to the coronavirus crisis. As this debate hots up it is important to understand what people think about public spending, wealth and tax. Tax Justice UK, along with Survation and ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Getting Tough.
    Not Mucking Around: With upwards of 800 dead from the virus’s resurgence in the Australian state of Victoria, leniency is not on Premier Daniel Andrews’ agenda. The Victorian Police are cracking down hard on the protesters the Australian press has labelled "Covidiots".IMAGES OF POLICE, some in riot gear, others on ...
    1 week ago
  • Media Link: Nuclear strategy, then and now.
    Although I had the fortune of being a graduate student of some of the foremost US nuclear strategists of the day (1970s) and later rubbed shoulders with Air Force and Naval officers who were entrusted with parts of the US nuclear arsenal, I seldom get to write or speak about ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Chinese List.
    News that Zhenhua Data, an arm of China Zhenhua Electronics Group, a subsidiary of the military-connected China Electronic Information Industry Group (CETC), maintains a list of 800 New Zealanders on a “Overseas Key Information Database” that contains personal information on more than 2.4 million foreign individuals, has caused some consternation ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Things that grow fast, and things that surprise us
    Marie Becdelievre January 2020. The number of news article mentioning coronavirus exploded and anxious voices whispered about a global pandemic. Whisper? To me, it was only a whisper. I tend to learn about the world through non-fiction books, conferences, and academic research rather than news and social media, so ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #37, 2020
    2,082,476,000,000,000 Viability of greenhouse gas removal via the artificial addition of volcanic ash to the ocean  (not open access, unfortunately) walks us through the numbers on a particular means of CO2 removal, addition of volcanic tephra to the ocean. The mechanism is straight chemistry and the cost is fully an order of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbados to become a republic
    Barbados is planning to remove the queen as head of state and become a republic in time for the 55th anniversary of its independence in 2021: Barbados has announced its intention to remove the Queen as its head of state and become a republic by November 2021. [...] Reading ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Party Like It’s 1989: Bait and Switch is a Bad Look, Mr Hipkins
    At the 2017 election, the New Zealand Labour Party promised a Fees Free Policy for tertiary students. Basically, it would make the first year of university education free in 2018, with a second year in 2021, and a third in 2024. It also promised to restore Post-Graduate access to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Will the tropics eventually become uninhabitable?
    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 What is the impact of temperature increases in the tropics? ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • A first-hand look: What it’s like to live in a 2020 California wildfire evacuation zone
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Daisy Simmons It felt like 100 degrees in my in-laws’ Grass Valley, California, kitchen, but at least the lights were on and for the moment we were safely “distanced” from the Jones Fire. We’d just finished dessert, after pizza and a movie ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Hokitika Landmark earmarked for $22m restoration
    Seddon House in Hokitika, once a hub for government on the West Coast, has been earmarked for government use once again. “Today we’re announcing a $22 million investment from the Government’s $3 billion infrastructure fund for shovel ready projects for the purchase and restoration of Seddon House in the heart of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes two diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced two new diplomatic appointments: •         Michael Appleton as New Zealand’s first resident High Commissioner to Sri Lanka. •        Tredene Dobson as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Viet Nam.  Sri Lanka “New Zealand is opening a post in Colombo in 2021 because we are ready ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ’s most prestigious conservation award – Loder Cup presented to Graeme Atkins
    The Minister of Conservation Minister, Eugenie Sage, today presented Aotearoa New Zealand’s most prestigious conservation award, the Loder Cup, to the 2020 winner Graeme Atkins while in Gisborne/Tūranga-nui-a-Kiwa. “Graeme Atkins of Ngāti Porou is a Department of Conservation ranger whose contribution to conservation goes well above and beyond his employment,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Parliament to install solar and cut carbon
    Parliament is leading by example by taking action to cut its carbon footprint by installing solar and improving energy efficiency, the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw said today. The Minister confirmed that Parliamentary Services will receive support through the Clean-Powered Public Service Fund to install solar PV and LED ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tuvalu Language Week theme promotes community resilience in the face of COVID-19
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says the 2020 Tuvalu Language Week theme of “Fakatili Te Kiloga Fou” which means “Navigating the changing environment” is a call on all Pacific peoples to be strong and resilient in the face of COVID-19. “This theme is a reminder to us ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • International sport back up and running in New Zealand
    The Government is welcoming today’s announcement that the West Indies and Pakistan cricket teams will tour New Zealand this summer.  “A lot of hard work has been undertaken by sports officials including New Zealand Cricket, Netball New Zealand and government officials to ensure that international sport can return safely to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • 1BT funds for Northland forest taonga
    Northland’s indigenous tree canopy is set to grow for the benefit of mana whenua and the wider community thanks to nearly $2 million in One Billion Trees funding, Forestry Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Komanga Marae Trust has received more than $1.54 million to restore and enhance the native ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Better health care for West Coasters as Te Nikau Hospital officially opened
    The Government has delivered a new hospital for Greymouth and is starting work on a much needed new health centre in Westport, ensuring local communities will benefit from better access to high quality integrated health services. Today, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Health Minister Peeni Henare officially open Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government backing local with PGF loan
    A West Coast distillery will benefit from a Provincial Growth Fund investment that will enable it to expand its operations and create jobs in the town of Reefton, Rural Communities Minister Damien O’Connor and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. The Reefton Distilling Co will receive a $928,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Primary sector exports and jobs up again
    Primary sector exports and jobs are up again, demonstrating the sector’s underlying strength amid the COVID-19 global pandemic and US-China trade war, and supporting New Zealand’s economic recovery. Stats NZ today reported New Zealand’s merchandise exports in August were up 8.6% on a year ago, driven by an increase in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Clean energy future for more schools
    Schools across Aotearoa New Zealand will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. The Minister has allocated $50 million from the Clean Powered Public Service Fund to replace, or convert, coal boilers in schools with clean ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Building business strength with digital tools
    New training and tools for digital commerce will give small businesses, especially in the tourism sector, the support they need to adapt and innovate in a COVID world. Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis and Small Business Minister Stuart Nash have announced details of how $20 million digital capability funding set aside ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New pest lures to protect nature
    The Department of Conservation (DOC) is investing $1.4 million to develop new predator lures that would be game-changers for trapping and surveillance towards a predator-free Aotearoa, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage, announced in Christchurch today. The proposal is to develop long-life lures attractive to a range of predators—rats, mustelids ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Support for innovative Pacific education responses to COVID-19 needs
    Supporting new and creative Pacific education practices as part of our COVID-19 response and recovery is the focus of a new $28.5 million Pacific Education Innovation Fund announced today by Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa.  “There is already an incredible amount of innovative and creative work going on in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Eligibility expanded for COVID-19 leave support
    The expanded scheme will cover: People who have COVID-19 like symptoms and meet the Ministry of Health’s criteria, and need to self-isolate while awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test. People who are directed to self-isolate by a Medical Officer of Health or their delegate or on advice of their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Seasonal work visa available to more people
    The Government is putting in place a range of immigration policy changes to help fill labour shortages in key industries while ensuring New Zealanders, who have lost jobs due to COVID-19, have the chance to find new employment. “Two key sectors we are moving to help are horticulture and wine ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More border exceptions for critical roles
    The Government has established class exceptions for border entry for a limited number of veterinarians, deep sea fishing crew, as well as agricultural and horticultural machinery operators. “Tight border restrictions remain the backbone of the Government’s border strategy to protect New Zealand against COVID-19 and ensure New Zealand citizens and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Crown will not appeal Dodds v Southern Response decision
    The Crown will not appeal the Court of Appeal decision in the Dodds v Southern Response case, Grant Robertson announced today. “Southern Response will be paying the damages awarded by the Court to Mr and Mrs Dodds shortly. The Crown was already meeting their legal costs for this appeal. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Crucial PGF investments for Northland
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing nearly $30 million in a diverse range of projects that will create immediate and long-term jobs and lift economic and social outcomes for Northland and its people. Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones made the announcement today in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • $27million investment in global vaccine facility
    The Coalition Government has committed to invest $27 million in COVID-19 vaccine development through the global COVAX Facility, Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The COVAX Facility is a key part of our COVID-19 Vaccine Strategy to obtain safe and effective vaccines. It allows us to invest in a high-quality, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government backing Māori landowners
    The Government will provide up to $1.69 million through the One Billion Trees programme to Māori landowners to make their whenua more productive through the planting of forests, both native and exotic, and improve economic and environmental outcomes, Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced. “Around 1.5 million ha of land ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New tools to make nature more accessible
    People planning to head outdoors now have a resource that lets them know how accessible an area is for people with varying levels of mobility, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. The Halberg Foundation, Sensibel, and the Department of Conservation (DOC) have launched Accessibel, a new tool which helps ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF makes Māori history more accessible
    One of the most significant battle sites of the 1860s Land Wars will receive $2.96 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to improve the site and help tell the New Zealand story to visitors, Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. Nanaia Mahuta ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Making it official: The journey of te reo Māori | Kia whakapūmautia: Ngā piki me ngā heke o te r...
    The journey towards recognising Māori as an official language and taonga has been captured as a web series and launched today during Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “Te reo Māori is a living language, and understanding its significance, and pathways to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Better-than-forecast GDP reflects decision to protect New Zealand
    Today’s better-than-forecast GDP figures show the expected impact of the decision to act quickly to protect New Zealanders from the global COVID-19 pandemic. GDP fell 12.2% in the June quarter from March, reflecting decisions to close New Zealand’s borders and enter Alert Level 4. “This result was better than the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Boost for COVID-19 related Pacific education needs
    The Government is investing $39.7 Million over four years to support the educational needs of Pacific learners and families in the regions hardest hit by COVID-19, with Auckland getting an immediate boost, Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa says.   “Like all New Zealanders Pacific families want learners to do well ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More resources for kiwi conservation
    New Zealand’s goal of 100,000 kiwi by 2030 is being helped by an extra $19.7 million in funding to accelerate iwi and community efforts to protect kiwi, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced. “$19.7 million of Jobs for Nature funding is being invested in kiwi conservation activities including increased predator ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Improving access to affordable electricity
    Ensuring New Zealanders can get the best deal on their electricity takes a step in the right direction today with the South Island launch of the EnergyMate pilot run by the Electricity Retailers’ Association, says Minister of Energy and Resources, Dr Megan Woods. EnergyMate is an industry-led programme providing coaching ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government achieves 50 percent women on state boards
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter announced today that the Government has reached its target of 50 percent on women on state sector board and committees – setting a new record level of women on state sector boards. “This Government is committed to having more women in leadership roles - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Record transport investment to help economic recovery and save lives
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