How To Get There 29/9/19

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, September 29th, 2019 - 26 comments
Categories: Deep stuff - Tags:

 

This post is a place for positive discussion of the future.

An Open Mike for ideas, solutions and the discussion of the possible.

The Big Picture, rather than a snapshot of the day’s goings on. Topics rather than topical.

We’d like to think it’s success will be measured in the quality of comments rather than the quantity.

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26 comments on “How To Get There 29/9/19 ”

  1. now that climate-change is front and centre in most minds…

    now we have to look at/to the practicalities of this..

    how are we going to get where we need to be..?

    how are we going to stop the planet from cooking..?

    we have at least one certainty – and that is that we cannot continue as before..

    that way will lead to us all being frogs – cooking slowly in a pot – approaching boiling point..

    and thinking about this leads me to the conclusion that we need a 'new deal'..

    a multi-faceted approach to/re-evaluation of pretty much all we do – as individuals and as a country..

    so we have to both look to politicians…and to ourselves..

    in the political big-picture – there are obvious moves – slashing the prices of electric vehicles – cars etc and bicycles – either by removing gst – or tax-breaks/subsidies..

    and levers to get people to shed dirty vehicles also – how to do that i am unsure..

    economic disincentives to invest in 'dirty' industries..?..first off the rank there being any entities that get govt-funding – universities etc..

    and of course the elephant in the room is our economic-dependence on the animal-extraction industries..

    and our biggest polluter – and by a country-mile – in fonterra…

    anyone got any suggestions about what to do about that..?

    (and i really don't think a bit of riparian-planting/shit-redirection will cut it..eh..?)

    the big question we all have to face now..

    is what do we – as individuals and a country – do about all this..?

    • Robert Guyton 1.1

      Good morning, Phil. In answer to your plaintive plea, "What do we do about all this..?", I'd like to offer the suggestion that, you in any case, are doing an important "thing" in asking your question. Anyone seeking the answer to your question must have at least in part, recognised the problem. Next, I reckon, comes focussing on the cause. If we jump into taking actions without exploring the root-cause of the problem, we might inadvertently make things worse. In my view, the core of the issue is a glitch, a black-hole, a psychopathy experienced by humans some tens of thousands of years ago and which bedevils us still. This disfunction was part of the process of becoming smart, as we humans have become, but proved a serious flaw in our development, even threatening to end our, and many of our our fellow-travellers', time on the planet. It may have been an inevitable occurrence or we may have made some very poor decisions, but we are living, and dying, with it now. Fighting such a "black-hole" is very difficult; it lacks a heart and doesn't behave like a flesh and blood, wood and sap, creature, more like a corporation, a sort of mini-me example of the greater issue. But we have minds, are intelligent and have hearts and souls and have to employ those to extricate ourselves from the mire we have dug and filled with poisoned water. I reckon we have a chance but don't think the outcome is certain. In particular response to your question, what do we do about all this, I would say, make decisions and chose actions using all of your human faculties and dismiss those that arise from the heartless, soulless black-hole that has lodged in our midst.

      If you were instead, looking for a list of practical actions to take, I have such a list also smiley

      • greywarshark 1.1.1

        Robert – a new Blip's list! Can you feed us one, with some hints to go about it every couple of days?. Sometimes we just need a little lift when we feel lost in the bog of stuff to do that is basically illusory in this modern world. Other times we feel depressed, unhappy and feeling helpless or hopeless. And other times we are just angry at everything and need to channel 'the force' into doing something ourselves that is another small step for us, and part of the giant steps together for mankind that we need to take.

        And then it would be good if we came back and told everyone how it is getting on, it gets blood pulsing through anaemic veins when others hear that and makes us want to do the same.

        • Robert Guyton 1.1.1.1

          Greta Thunberg has wisely avoided providing such a list, encouraging instead giving attention to the scientists and what they have found. That advice though, is directed at deniers or those unsure of the immediacy of the situation. For those wanting to get busy mitigating, ameliorating or preventing the science-described troubles, I'd suggest where possible taking a non-confrontational approach to progressing actions; pick the low-hanging fruit and gain energy from those before tackling the more difficult issues. Don't get into intractable arguments that annoy and exhaust. Leave those who yearn for such entanglements to twist and turn in their own nests. School strikes for climate, btw, I see as good examples where people came together in support of each other; I doubt there were many off-to-the-side shouting matches between protesters and deniers; it just didn't seem to be that sort of event. The nay-sayers will have rallied by now though and are doubtless scoring spectacular points against the "Greta-followers" on-line.

          • greywarshark 1.1.1.1.1

            The main sources of easy energy for humans are it seems, oil and vinegar. Oil to run our vehicles and vinegar as mildly acid to spit at everyone who tries to make changes away from easy-oasy use of oil (one of which being plastic).

            The ideas is to reduce oil and vinegar use to making a tasty dressing to go over a home-grown, (or organically produced and sold by a local grower) salad.

      • phillip ure 1.1.2

        i see the 'causes' as being visible/clear – most of them..

        c.f. oil/animal-extraction/internal-combustion engines/'bad' investments..etc etc..

        so dealing to them would be a good start..

        and your 'list' couldn't hurt…eh..?

    • Janet 1.2

      The politicians; the government, have to lead the way on this one. First to generally educate the general public to make them more aware of their own planet destroying/consuming ways and its consequences,.and the banning of plastic bags in supermarket must have started most people thinking! Then as people catch-on give them the information on the many, many ways they can help by changing their own ways without too much pain. ( Just like anti-litter campaigns )
      To this end, there should be, for an example, many many more documentaries in this genre – like the documentary “Tomorrow” – on the TV .
      The government has to lead the way and the government HAS to regulate to stop all unnecessary products coming into NZ. Forget about Free Trade. We need regulation, for example, to stop for example “planned obsolescence” . How long did your grandmothers fridge live – forever nearly – how long does the modern day fridge run, 7 – 10 yrs if you are lucky! We need lots of Import Control not Free Trade.

      There are many kinds of farmers in NZ and there is nothing unsustainable in producing meat to feed New Zealanders. The problem is we are trying to feed the world!

      When you do the right thing and factor in the offset effects of the trees and hectares of grass growing on the farm against the number of livestock on the farm and you calculate that against the animal producing products – nitrogen, artificial fertiliser, palm kernel etc that are “imported” on to the farm then you start to get a fair and correct idea of who is farming sustainably and who is not. Whose farming methods are effecting climate change and whose are not.

      Until it feels like our government is taking charge and leading the way surely there are going to be a lot more “headless chickens “ running about !

      • Incognito 1.2.1

        If we really want our politicians to lead us we have to vote and vote with our feet, for starters. The Overton window might be changing but our risk-averse politicians are lagging. Their parties have self-interest in abundance but their caucuses lack courage. What comes first, leadership or mandate? The necessary action does not occur at national level only but also much closer to home, at regional and local level. Yet the turnout at our Local Elections promises to be an all-time low, which shows our political apathy. Therefore, we cannot blame (!) our political representatives and leaders to be of the same apathetic mould as they have been chosen from our midst and by us.

        • phillip ure 1.2.1.1

          @ incognito…

          ''we cannot blame (!) our political representatives and leaders'..

          while i understand the bow you draw..

          there is one big difference between them and us..

          in that they have the powers to effect the changes we need at that level..

          so despite low voter turnout – we most certainly can 'blame' them – if they don't do what needs to be done..

          who else can we hold to account/incentivise to move..?

          if not them..?

  2. WeTheBleeple 2

    Here's the first half of an old article I'm re-writing as recent history lends examples to ponder upon.

    Water Water Everywhere

    i.

    2019: In the drought-stricken regions of India, well over a hundred people were killed by heat and a quarter a billion had little to no water. The monsoon season was late; off-season rainfall had dropped; and this is a repeating, while increasing in severity, phenomenon.

    New Zealand is not immune to drought. Recent calls for Aucklander's to reduce water consumption in mid-winter clearly illustrates the potential exacerbation of water shortages here. While we have no monsoon season there are similarities in water cycles worldwide: after a major rain event, much is lost to surface flow straight back into the ocean. Adding to this: after a period without rain, arable land becomes less permeable to water; and so, the longer the period between rain events, the more water goes back to the ocean.

    2019: After 5 years of drought in Queensland, Australia, farmers rejoiced to finally see rain. What followed was a flood so devastating it killed more than 650 000 cattle, 48 000 sheep, and left a 2-billion-dollar mess in its wake. Topsoil was stripped. Freshwater, estuarine and coastal areas inundated with silt, carcasses and debris. Many farmers lost everything except their mortgages.

    The Great Artesian Basin is a 1.7 million square kilometre sandstone aquifer that lies mostly beneath Queensland. Its springs have supplied water to Aboriginal communities for dozens of millennia. Its discovery only a century ago enabled bore drilling and farming on a scale unprecedented in this semi-arid region. Soon canals criss-crossed the land with water flowing freely from the myriad of bores that had sprung up. By 1999 a sustainability initiative was granted Federal and State funds to help stop the decline of this aquifer.

    What followed was a game of whack-a-mole. As one lot of bores was capped, other previously dried out boreholes opened up. The restoration work continues, but the free-flowing water of Queensland's Farmers no longer flows so freely. Mound springs, paperbark swamps and wetlands have begun to dry up, while water usage continues to increase.

    Roughly two thirds of all rain that falls on land originates from the land. Transpiration of plants and evapotranspiration from terrestrial surfaces account for this. The oceans contribute the rest, which is the same volume that flows back out to sea. This balance (one in one out) changes where the land has become dry &/or plant cover is absent; as is often the case following drought. With plant transpiration and evapotranspiration severely curtailed, rainfall might drop considerably.

    It is predicted that both drought and rainfall events will increase in severity for NZ's climate, thus setting the stage for more flooding, yet less water returned to the land. What we require are mitigation strategies that address drought, flooding and aquifer recharge at once.

    "Nor dim nor red, like God's own head,

    The glorious Sun uprist:

    Then all averred, I had killed the bird

    That brought the fog and mist." – The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

    ii.

    New Zealand's hydrological cycles are intrinsically linked to our power supply. Where weather patterns are altered due to climate change, our power supply (and waterways) may likewise be altered.

    In dry periods, rivers and streams are fed by groundwater flow, that portion of rain that penetrates the surfaces it falls on. Groundwater flow is orders of magnitude slower than overland flow, and so, after extended periods of drought, one might still observe rivers and streams with running water. The total aboveground storage of freshwater (rivers, lakes, wetlands) is only about 1% of total freshwater; while groundwater storage accounts for 25%.

    Aquifers are groundwater storage replenished via groundwater flow percolating down through soils and the base of aboveground water storages. Recharge rates are dependant on levels of rainfall, ground permeability, and rates of aquifer depletion. Wherever pumping of aquifer water exceeds recharge rates, aquifers are depleted.

    Mitigation of both drought and flood requires the slowing down and capture of rainfall. A portion of the rain returning to sea needs to be slowed and/or trapped: allowing it to percolate down into groundwater flow and aquifers. This replenishes aquifers and maintains steady flows for our streams, rivers and hydro generation. Using whole catchment methods involving tree planting and incorporating small, but multiple earthworks and above ground storages slows and trap rain.

    A decrease in overland flow reduces severity of flood events in lower catchments. Additionally, the transpiration of trees has the potential to mitigate damage from multiple rain events through increasing the volume/time required for saturation of a landscape to be achieved. Added to this are the valuable products, aesthetics and ecosystem services generated with the creation of such systems.

    Where plant cover and sufficient water are present on the land plant productivity and carbon storage are increased simultaneously. The carbon pathway from atmosphere through plants to soil organisms and ultimately soil humus turns the soil into a giant sponge capable of retaining water and excess nutrients further increasing fertility and subsequent production. Current agricultural practises including tilling, applications of salt fertilisers, and the wide variety of poisons that come with these systems destroy soil microbiology and leave the land exposed to the vagaries of weather: drying out to become impervious in the sun and eroding in the wet.

    "And every tongue, through utter drought,

    Was withered at the root;

    We could not speak, no more than if

    We had been choked with soot." – The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

    • Robert Guyton 2.1

      Yes to all that, WTB. Dehydration destroys. There are a myriad of examples from the natural world that we can follow to restore water flow through the atmosphere and ground and we should resist the temptation to repeat the mistakes we have already made; the technical, concrete over-scaled dumbed-down attempts to over-ride systems that flow like the wind and move like the tides.

  3. greywarshark 3

    Thanks wtb for that – good to read with a cup of tea besides, or kampucha, or other beverage. I wonder if Mulloon Natural Farming is taking off or are the assassins in government still trying to kill off new, but radically old ideas that allow for good human existence in difficult times? They will fight to the end I am afraid if left in positions of power by the uncaring or Rip van Winkle citizens.

    • WeTheBleeple 3.1

      I hope the above will outline the importance of systems such as those the Mulloon Institute practice. The math is so simple. Two thirds of rain originates from terrestrial sources. As we deplete terrestrial water/trees/cover we deplete sources of rain. This begins a negative feedback loop with less rain generated and yet more flooding as impervious surfaces have lost capacity to infiltrate water.

      Trees also generate microbes that are released in updrafts – microbes that catalyse rain formation. So we lose potential moisture, and catalysts for rain in one hit. BUT – it get's worse. Every 1 degree in temperature rise allows the atmosphere to hold 7% more water. Lacking catalysts (trees) for rain generation – rain is no longer 'triggered by land', rather, it falls haphazardly via temperature drops. So there's worse floods when we do get rain, but lots more rain lost to (falling on) the ocean having passed over land, and lots more capacity to dry out the land with increased atmospheric holding capacity. Added to this the increased temperature decreases rain events. Droughts become more severe, and when it rains, flooding will be more frequent.

      Systems of earthworks, water storage and judicious planting are imperative to reverse such trends. 57% of the worlds freshwater aquifers are severely depleted. Australia, India and parts of the States (among other areas) illustrate the progression of the loss of groundwater. Desert, drought, hardship. We can't keep irrigating from aquifers when they're running out of water it's a losers game.

      We need to recharge the aquifers. The only way is to trap the water before it goes back to the ocean. Done properly this will restore ecosystems and their services. Current irrigation schemes are short term solutions for the few. They will ultimately lose the farm without wise investment in rain harvesting methods.

      How many disasters does it take before people see the writing on the wall? Regenerative farming incorporating earthworks will save the farm. Aquifer depletion will render entire regions inoperable for today's methods of food production.

      • Robert Guyton 3.1.1

        "trap the water"?

        Encourage the water to set awhile, as Granny Clampet would have said. If we recognise water as an entity, rather than a commodity, we'll treat and speak about Her differently. I'm not being critical, WTB, just thinking aloud…

        • WeTheBleeple 3.1.1.1

          'Slow and trap the water' would have been better wording. Water is the crucial element in all of life. We have been living in a water AND a carbon bubble. The recent European heatwaves saw people take refuge from the heat in various fountains and other water features in cities. In the future those options will be lost – unless we collectively learn to be servants, rather than 'masters' of the natural world. Corporations are greedily sucking up what they can impoverishing and displacing first peoples around the globe and depleting the natural resources of entire countries. Their sway over governments likewise must be addressed.

  4. greywarshark 4

    Graeme advised what he and the group he is with have been doing with planting.

    https://thestandard.org.nz/another-world-is-possible/#comment-1658010

    Down here we've got the Wakatipu Re-forestation Trust They collect local seed, raise the seedlings in their nursery and then plant them out in project areas around the district. And an army of volunteers who do an amazing amount of work

    Last weekend around 90 of us had 1100 plants in the ground by smoko.

  5. greywarshark 5

    Here is a repeat of what I put up yesterday in Open Mike I think.. This woman is a tonic, as they say, and you get a feel-good response that says to you, could this work if we did enough of it, to lift community and get joined-up collaboration to help us cope and be happy while we are striving to deal with Change in Climate, Politics, Loss of societal kindness, Loss of willingness to limit one's comfort and make changes for the greater good.

    Here is how to make a better world, it is not impossible. Barbara Sher




    Isolation is the dream-killer, not your attitude

    Wish/Obstacle – we are problem-solving animals.

  6. greywarshark 6

    As Chris Trotter tests out ideas and where they lead he is being more assertive about what we can and should do. This from the start of his new essay. https://bowalleyroad.blogspot.com/2019/09/greed-is-not-good-but-it-can-make-good.html

    The Last, Best Hope Of Humankind: New Zealand was once known as the social laboratory of the world; why should it not turn itself into the planet’s climate laboratory? Directing our energy outward is the only viable survival strategy available to New Zealanders. There are no walls that we could possibly hope to build, high enough to keep us safe.

    “I STUFFED THEIR MOUTHS WITH GOLD.” So said the Labour politician responsible for creating Britain’s iconic National Health Service (NHS). Aneurin Bevan had been asked to explain how he had managed to silence the British Medical Association’s (BMA) fierce opposition to the keystone of the Labour Government’s socialist programme – and that was his reply. Jacinda Ardern and James Shaw could do a lot worse than be guided by Bevan’s example – especially since New Zealand’s farmers appear to value nothing so much as cash.

  7. gsays 7

    Meant as a reply to Phil @ 1.2.1.1.
    Sorry Phil, I have to blow a whistle there.

    'They' may have their hands on the levers, but they are looking over their shoulders with an inquisitive look, hands tentatively over a lever, ready to switch to another one.

    If we stop going to supermarkets, watch them change their habits.

    This is why a few of us a re frustrated with the current regime- all this talk before being elected, and there are only a few gestures to point at.

    • i am still optimistic that things can still happen..

      i feel that j.a. cannot ignore the mandate she now has to make nz an exemplar of what can be done..

      the march – and her international stature/clout only underline that mandate..

      and surely she must realise – if not now – when exactly..

      she really has it in her own hands to be either a hero or a villain of the piece..

      i am sure she will pick the former…

      (and if any in the coalition block this/any moves – the backlash on them at the ballot box will be fierce..i am sure they are smart enough to know/see that..)

      • Robert Guyton 7.1.1

        I share your view, Phil. All Greta has to do is hold her line and she seems to be expert at doing just that.

  8. joe90 8

    Bill McKibben – follow the money.

    Money Is the Oxygen on Which the Fire of Global Warming Burns

    What if the banking, asset-management, and insurance industries moved away from fossil fuels?

    […]

    But what if there were an additional lever to pull, one that could work both quickly and globally? One possibility relies on the idea that political leaders are not the only powerful actors on the planet—that those who hold most of the money also have enormous power, and that their power could be exercised in a matter of months or even hours, not years or decades. I suspect that the key to disrupting the flow of carbon into the atmosphere may lie in disrupting the flow of money to coal and oil and gas.

    https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/money-is-the-oxygen-on-which-the-fire-of-global-warming-burns

  9. greywarshark 9

    Anthony McCarten – laughter Ted Talk. I think this ability is very important for a good future. (How many times do you see images of dictators roaring their heads off at something silly.)

    (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2qM1I-JCEQ

    Nzr – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_McCarten

  10. How one tree grows 40 different kinds of fruit | Sam Van Aken

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uU2L5nTSHtc

    Van Aken starts:

    100 years ago there were 2000 varieties of peaches, nearly 2000 different varieties of plums, and almost 800 different named varieties of apples growing in the United States [of America]. Today only a fraction of those is left and the rest is threatened by industrialised agriculture, disease and climate change.

    He points out that almost all of the fruit trees were brought to the States. and he says, embedded within these fruit is our culture. Immigrants valued and brought them with them as a connection to their home. In many ways these fruit are our story.

  11. TedX talk from Christchurch 2019.

    Resilient People: The three secrets of resilience. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NWH8N-BvhAw

    Dr Lucy Hone is a resilience expert who thought she found her calling supporting people to recover following the Christchurch earthquake. She had no idea that her personal journey was about to take her to a far darker place. In this powerful and courageous talk, she shares the three strategies that got her through an unimaginable tragedy⁠—and offers a profound insight on human suffering.

    Dr Lucy Hone is a director of the New Zealand Institute of Wellbeing & Resilience, a research associate at AUT University, a published academic researcher, best-selling author and contributor to Psychology Today, the Sunday Star Times and Next magazine. She trained at the University of Pennsylvania and got her PhD in public health at AUT University in Auckland.

    She has helped a range of organisations—from primary schools to leading law firms—to design and implement wellbeing initiatives creating sustained and meaningful change.

    Five years ago, the sudden death of Lucy’s 12-year-old daughter Abi forced Lucy to turn her academic training and professional practice to foster resilience in very personal circumstances. The blog she wrote in the aftermath of Abi’s death attracted international attention and resulted in the best-selling non-fiction title, What Abi Taught Us, Strategies for Resilient Grieving (Allen & Unwin, 2016), now available as Resilient Grieving in the US, UK and NZ. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx

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    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18
    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • The politics of managed retreat
    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 day ago
  • Some changes are coming
    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • About fucking time
    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking
    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.
    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    2 days ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?
    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 days ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.
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    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent
    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17
    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac
    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • A blanket of misinformation
    Two old sayings have been on my mind lately. The first is: “The pen is mightier than the sword”, describing the power of language and communication to help or to harm. The other, which captures the speed with which falsehoods can become ingrained and hard to undo, is: “A lie can ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 17
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 7:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 are:Scoop: Government considers rolling back home insulation standards RNZ’s Eloise GibsonNews: Government plans tree-planting frenzy as report shows NZ no longer ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 17
    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 , the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day were:Simon Watts released the Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP), which included proposed changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • “Shhhh” – National's 3 Waters is loaded with higher costs and lays a path to ...
    This is a long, possibly technical, but very, very important read. I encourage you to take the time and spread your awareness.IntroductionIn 2022, then Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Adern expended significant political capital to protect New Zealand’s water assets from privatisation. She lost that battle, and Labour and the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Plugging a video channel: Dr Gilbz
    Dr. Ella Gilbert is a climate scientist and presenter with a PhD in Antarctic climate change, working at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Her background is in atmospheric sciences and she's especially interested in the physical mechanisms of climate change, clouds, and almost anything polar. She is passionate about communicating climate ...
    3 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” again
    Back in 2022, in its Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, the government promised to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation. Since then they've run a secret "consultation" on how to do that, with their preferred outcome being that agencies will consult the Ministry of Justice ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Crashing New Zealand's health system is not the way to prosperity, Prime Minister
    Another day, and yet another piece of bad news for New Zealand’s health system. Reports have come out that General Practitioners (GP) may have to close doors, or increase patient fees to survive. The so-called ‘capitation’ funding review, which supports GP practices to survive, is under way, and primary care ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Closer Than You Think: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    3 days ago
  • Come on Darleen.
    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won
    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16
    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16
    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother
    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?
    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    4 days ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)
    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    4 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.
    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Law & Order: National Party 1, Police 0, Public -1
    What happened?Media is reporting that police have lost in their pay dispute with the Coalition Government.Some of you might remember that the police rejected Labour’s previous offer in September, 2023, possibly looking forward to be taken care of by the self-touted ‘Party of Law and Order’ - National.If you look ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Trump shooting and a potential hike in fees for visiting the doctor
    Having watched Donald Trump systematically exploit social grievances, urge people not to accept his election loss and incite his followers to violent insurrection… it is a bit hard to swallow the media descriptions over the past 24 hours of Trump being a “victim” of violence. More like a case of ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Monday July 15
    The exploitation of workers on the national fibre broadband rollout highlights once again the dark underbelly of our ‘churn and burn’ economy. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:An extraordinary Steve Kilgallon investigation into ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 15
    Photo by Jessica Loaiza on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last three days to 9:00 am on Monday, July 15 are:Investigation: Immigration NZ refused to prosecute an alleged exploiter despite a mountain of evidence - ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • City Centre Rebuild: How Soon Is Now?
    Patrick Reynolds is deputy chair of the City Centre Advisory Panel and a director of Greater Auckland There is ongoing angst about construction disruption in the city centre. And fair enough: it’s very tough, CRL and other construction has been going on for a very long time. Like the pandemic, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    4 days ago
  • Peril, dismay, resolution
    This afternoon we rolled into Budapest to bring to a close our ride across Europe. We did 144 km yesterday, severe heat messages coming in from the weather app as we bounced along unformed Hungarian back roads and a road strip strewn with fallen trees from an overnight tornado. Somewhere ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • Bullet the Blue Sky
    In the locust windComes a rattle and humJacob wrestled the angelAnd the angel was overcomeYou plant a demon seedYou raise a flower of fireWe see them burnin' crossesSee the flames, higher and higherBullet the blue skyBullet the blue skyThe indelible images, the soundtrack of America. Guns, assassinations, where-were-you-when moments attached ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 15
    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the three days to 6:00 am on Monday, July 23 are:University of Auckland researcher Ryan Greenaway-McGrevy published an analysis of the impact of Auckland's 2016 zoning reforms.BNZ's latest Performance ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s diary for the week to July 23 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to July 23 include:PM Christopher Luxon has returned from a trip to the United States and may hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4:00 pm today.The BusinessNZ-BNZ PSI survey results for June will be released this ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Was The Assassination Attempt Fake?
    Hi,It’s in incredible photo, and we’re going to be talking about it for a long time:Trump, triumphantly raising his hand in the air after being shot. Photo credit: Evan VucciYou can watch what happened on YouTube in real time, as a 20-year-old from Pennsylvania lets off a series of gunshots ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 days ago
  • 40 years ago, inside the crisis that made modern NZ
    It had rained all day in Auckland, and the Metro Theatre in Mangere was steamed up inside as more and more people arrived to celebrate what had once seemed impossible. Sir Robert Muldoon had lost the 1984 election. “Piggy” Muldoon was no more. Such was the desire to get rid ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #28
    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 7, 2024 thru Sat, July 13, 2024. Story of the week It's still early summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The season comes as our first year of 1.5°C warming ...
    5 days ago
  • Unsurprising, but Trump shooting creates opportunity for a surprising response
    I can’t say I’m shocked. As the US news networks offer rolling coverage dissecting the detail of today’s shooting at a Donald Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, and we hear eye-witnesses trying to make sense of their trauma, the most common word being used is shock. And shocking it is. ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    5 days ago
  • Escalation in the States as Trump is shot and his allies capitalize on the moment
    Snapshot summary of the shooting in the States belowAnd a time to remember what Abraham Lincoln once said of the United States of America:We find ourselves in the peaceful possession of the fairest portion of the earth, as regards extent of territory, fertility of soil, and salubrity of climate. We ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Bernie Sanders: Joe Biden for President
    I will do all that I can to see that President Biden is re-elected. Why? Despite my disagreements with him on particular issues, he has been the most effective president in the modern history of our country and is the strongest candidate to defeat Donald Trump — a demagogue and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Questions from God
    Have you invited God into your online life? Do you have answers for his questions? Did I just assume God’s pronouns?Before this goes any further, or gets too blasphemous, a word of explanation. When I say “God”, I don’t meant your god(s), if you have one/them. The God I speak ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • The politics of money and influence
    Did you know: Four days ago, the CEO of Warner Bros Discovery (WBD), David Zaslav, opined that he didn’t really care who won the US Presidential election, so long as they were M&A and business friendly. Please share my Substack so I can continue my work. Thank you and happy ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Auckland & Transport Minister Simeon Brown's insanity
    Excuse me, but I just don’t feel like being polite today. What is going on with Simeon Brown? I mean, really? After spending valuable Ministerial time, focus, and government resources to overturn tailored speed limits in school and high fatality zones that *checks notes* reduces the risk of deaths and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Were scientists caught falsifying data in the hacked emails incident dubbed 'climategate'?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Were scientists caught falsifying data in the ...
    6 days ago
  • What Happened to David D'Amato's Millions?
    Today’s podcast episode is for paying Webworm members — and is a conversation seven years in the making. Let me explain.Hi,As I hit “send” on this newsletter, I’m about to play my 2016 documentary Tickled to a theatre full of about 400 Webworm readers in Auckland, New Zealand.And with Tickled ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Voting as a multi-order process of choice.
    Recent elections around the world got me to thinking about voting. At a broad level, voting involves processes and choices. Embedded in both are the logics that go into “sincere” versus “tactical” voting. “Sincere” voting is usually a matter of preferred … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Women in Space.
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    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 13
    Auckland waterfront, July. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 13 are:The National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government watered down vehicle emissions standards this week, compounding the climate emissions damage from an increasingly ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Dems need to ask the right question about Biden as his age now defines the campaign
    Midway through the news conference that many American political commentators had built up as critical to Joe Biden’s re-election chances, the US president said European leaders are not asking him not to run for a second term, “they’re saying you gotta win”.The problem for Biden and his advisors is that ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • Govt flounders while ocean temps soar
    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items of climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer, most of which they discussin the video above. According to experts, the rate of ocean surface warming around New Zealand is “outstripping the global ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Learning From Brexit
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    7 days ago
  • Bernard’s Chorus for Friday, July 12
    TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so on the morning of Friday, July 12 are: Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Hot Damn! It's The Soggy Bottom Boys!
    Good morning lovely people, and welcome to another weekly review. One which saw the our Prime Minister in Washington, running around with all the decorum of Augustus Gloop with a golden ticket, seeking photo opportunities with anyone willing to shake his hand.Image: G News.He had his technique down to overcome ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago

  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals
    Five hospitals have been selected to trial a new mental health and addiction peer support service in their emergency departments as part of the Government’s commitment to increase access to mental health and addiction support for New Zealanders, says Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Peer Support Specialists in EDs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan
    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset
    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • School attendance continues to increase
    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights
    The coalition Government is providing migrant school leavers with greater opportunities, by increasing access to part-time work rights for those awaiting the outcome of a family residence application, Immigration Minister Erica Stanford has announced.  “Many young people who are part of a family residence application process are unable to work. ...
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    2 days ago
  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery
    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki
    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston
    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety
    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship
    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality
    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers
    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
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    4 days ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy
    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants
    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • District Court judges appointed
    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
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    7 days ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins
    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
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    1 week ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended
    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
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