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How To Get There: New Years Day edition

Written By: - Date published: 10:17 am, January 1st, 2020 - 63 comments
Categories: Deep stuff - Tags: , ,

I’ve been thinking about the 2020s as the decade of deep, life affirming change. Tempting to think of it as the do or die decade, but am mindful of Micky’s post yesterday, The Power of Positive Campaigning. He looked at the importance of framing party politics and elections in terms of

positive simple branding and ideas being the cornerstone of any successful campaign. The basic theme is that to win progressives should not move to the middle but should instead seek to persuade through progressive and uplifting campaigns.

Referencing a series of podcasts on progressive wins by Anat Shenker-Osorio, Micky names these key points,

  • inclusive language
  • a good ground game
  • a positive uplifting campaign based on core shared values

Much of what Micky said seems relevant to action on the climate and ecological crises.

I don’t think this means relentless positivity in denial of reality, but that while we have the discussions about the hard stuff we also need to put substantial energy and focus into what makes people feel good, because this helps people change (and prevents turning off).

Human brains are hardwired to perceive threat and react, and there is plenty out there now that is scary as well as the intentional ramping up of our fight/flight response by MSM, social media, politicians, and pop culture. It takes intention to counter that and provide narratives and pathways that offer people a choice of deep, abiding, life affirming change instead of panic and regression into denial or fascism. Some of us like the argument and have a high tolerance for wrangling with the gnarly issues, but most people still respond better to things that bring them relief, peace, and uplift them.

I don’t know how we do this, but I suspect it’s about finding a sweet spot between awareness of the difficult and proactively framing values and deeds that make people feel good.

At the moment it looks like 20/80 would be the good ratio, but then I’m sitting in southern New Zealand in an eerie yellow gloom from the Australian bushfires that’s starting to hurt my sinuses, and trying to work my way out of the apocalyptic imagery that is scrolling through my twitter feed. For people that are still not paying attention, maybe the ratio is more like 50/50.

So here’s to a year where we choose to make the changes we need by effective strategy. We can argue but we can also be kind. We can point out what is wrong and disappointing, and we can move on to highlight what will work instead. Some of us will protest and agitate, and others will tend the garden and make sure we are all well fed. Kia kaha, kia aroha Aotearoa.

In line with our regular Sunday How to Get There posts,

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.

63 comments on “How To Get There: New Years Day edition”

  1. Sacha 1

    Love conquers fear.

    The challenge is how we translate that into action.

  2. Billy 2

    Anat Shenker-Osorio’s advice is best not taken too seriously, in my opinion, but she could prove useful if you need to clean a big chimney.

  3. weka 3

  4. Anne 4

    It is to be hoped the out-flow of dust particles from the devastating Aussi fires will finally bring all NZers to their senses about the seriousness of Climate Change. Nothing like a bit of first hand experience to make people sit up and take notice. 

    Yesterday afternoon Auckland was blanketed in a thick haze. Driving past the tall trees lining the Takapuna Grammar School perimeter, I could see the dust/smoke laden haze wafting over the tops of the trees . There was a faint smell of smoke which irritated my throat the rest of the night. It doesn't seem so bad this morning – fingers crossed. 

    If 2020 marks the start of an all out effort to combat CC… where the dwindling number of deniers are ignored by the media and everybody – farmers, industry, urban dwellers, manufacturers, government officials – pulls their weight, then we will start making headway. As Jacinda Ardern says  "we can do it".

    • Anne 4.1

      Talking of Jacinda Ardern… I'm sure I read somewhere she, Clarke and little Neve were planning a holiday at a seaside location south of Sydney. If they are already there I hope they are safe.

    • weka 4.2

      It's bad enough in the South Island today to be irritating. I've seen glowing skies before from Aussie bushfires, but not smelt it like this or been negatively affected. It's like there is a farm burn off nearby. Much more visceral and real, I'm also hoping this will bring it home to more people who will then want action. So fortunate to have Ardern a PM, and Greens in government at this time.

      • Heather Grimwood 4.2.1

        To Weka  at 4.2 :  Hear hear ! Hear  hear!!!

      • Formerly Ross 4.2.2

        Australia accounts for 1.3% of the world's emissions, so I doubt we'll see anything startling in terms of new policies coming out of Australia. In addition, the Environment Minister there says that Australia has been performing relatively well regarding reducing emissions.

        Australian Environment Minister Angus Taylor also noted in The Australian on Tuesday that Australia is outperforming its peers on climate. “Since 2005, Australia’s emissions have fallen 12.9 per cent, even while building the biggest liquefied natural gas industry in the world,” he wrote. “Canada’s emissions have fallen just 2 per cent and New Zealand’s have risen 4 per cent.”

        https://www.vox.com/2019/12/30/21039298/40-celsius-australia-fires-2019-heatwave-climate-change

         

        • weka 4.2.2.1

          that's jiggery pokery with the performance stats. Read what Australian climate scientists, activists and firefighters are saying instead.

          Re % by country, if each smaller emitter didn't do their bit that's a large chunk of GHGs globally not being reduced. Same applies to NZ. You can see this in this chart,

          https://www.visualcapitalist.com/all-the-worlds-carbon-emissions-in-one-chart/

          Which is why climate action requires us all to do our bit.

          All countries need social change before they do the right thing, including NZ and Oz. Oz has specific challenges because of the heavy GHG industry that the economy is dependent on at the moment and how political parties and other bodies (eg unions) are tied into that. But eventually that will have to change, like other places it's a matter of whether they get ahead of the crisis or wait until the crisis forces them.

          The opportunity here is that the current bushfire crisis will push a larger number of the population to demand change and more people will then support movements like SS4C, and then the politicians will follow. This is how change happens.

           

          • Sacha 4.2.2.1.1

            And the young people are clear about what needs to happen.

            • weka 4.2.2.1.1.1

              Also Scott Morrison, on the day that families were being evacuated off beaches because they were trapped there by bushfires while their town burned,

              “there’s no better place to raise kids anywhere on the planet”.

              Are they polling to get those lines? Because it's almost unbelievable that they have support from the general Australian public on this, but then I guess that's who voted them in.

              SS4C are one of our great hopes. I hope they sweep the likes of Morrison away.

      • Robert Guyton 4.2.3

        Everyone I've met here in Southland today is talking about the Australian fires. Tales of what they did last night have been set aside for the more immediate issue. 

      • mary_a 4.2.4

        Absolutely agree with your sentiments Weka (4.2)

        Woke up this morning in Cromwell to a yellow smokey haze hovering over the town, which is still hanging around getting denser, bringing a smell of smoke with it now. Quite eerie atmospheric conditions, a scary contrast to Cromwell's usual clean, clear, crisp atmosphere.

        A bit wake up call coming I hope re CC, here, in Australia and the rest of the world. 

        My sincere heartfelt thoughts are with those affected in Australia by the bush fires. It seems absolute hell over there a the present time. Kia Kaha. 

         

         

    • Heather Grimwood 4.3

      To  Anne  at 4 :  Re  realisation of  CC…….Been  thinking  since  early  morning  the  same  thing  Anne….the  smoke  pervading NZ  or  at least  my  home  in  Dunedin  could  not  go  unnoticed. I  have  experienced  milder  evidence  of  Australian  fires  when  a  child  but  nothing like  this.

      Guess  NZ  has  been  insulated  from  what  has  been evident  in  Amazon,  areas  between  Australia  and Asia,  Spain etc  where  fires  even  if  begun  by  human  foolishness  or greed,  have  been accentuated  by  the  increased  ambient temperatures  due  to  CC,

       

    • Sacha 4.4

      It is to be hoped the out-flow of dust particles from the devastating Aussi fires will finally bring all NZers to their senses about the seriousness of Climate Change. Nothing like a bit of first hand experience to make people sit up and take notice. 

      Storms and flooding have done that already for many New Zealanders. More our future than fires are (though not as pictorially impressive).

      • weka 4.4.1

        I suspect that is more true for the North Island. In the South Island fire is going to be an increasing risk. All those pines, gums, kānuka/mānuka, tussock, including where people are living, in a country that has a poor awareness of fire hazard (unlike Australia).

        Also DOC estate. Farmers who are also volunteer firefighters are talking about the problems with transitioning farmland to conservation estate and that land now being much more flammable because vegetation isn't controlled. That added to drought is a potent mix.

        I think fire is the big one we're not paying heed to. We can rebuild houses relatively quickly if we have to. It takes at least 30 years to replace a forest. There's a cycle of land cleared by fire becoming more fire prone in low rainfall areas, reducing soil moisture and fertility, shade and food/other resources for humans, stock and wildlife.

        We have time to address that, but we're not there yet in terms of building that thinking into our planning (eg we're still planting pines to grow money). Thankfully the regenerative people have been practicing and adapting, so we will have some real life examples to build on when the time comes.

        • Robert Guyton 4.4.1.1

          Agreed, weka. If we are to replant, we have to replant wisely and strategically. No point in planting fuel for forest fires. WTB has posted repeatedly on using fire-resistant native and exotic trees as natural firebreaks; someone, someone, should, should, make the forestry people aware of this thinking. Someone should be promoting the propagation of these fire-proof trees en masse for the purpose of countering the events we smell unfolding in Australia.

           

          • weka 4.4.1.1.1

            this is my frustration at the moment. People are getting on board with the need to act, but how to act is still constrained by civ/industrial thinking.

            • Robert Guyton 4.4.1.1.1.1

              If the thinking corrupts the action; suppresses it or causes it to be mistaken, the greatest need is for the thinking to change. Culture, it's popularly thought, changes at a glacial pace, but when the glaciers are changing at pace, that thinking may be redundant. Imagine if a cultural shift was underway already; our collective heads would swim at the pace of change. 

            • adam 4.4.1.1.1.2

              Act, by not acting.

               

        • Pingao 4.4.1.2

          I was thinking about all the Eucalyptus and pine trees planted in rural areas near power lines (mainly because I know someone who keeps planting gum trees under power lines in a dry valley and want to persuade him to stop) and what might be good to plant under or near power lines in regenerating bush areas and came across this link from Orion.

           https://www.oriongroup.co.nz/safety/time-to-trim-your-trees/trees-to-plant/

  5. Bill 5

    Well… I can't rip through the cheap cellophane sky that has me burning main room lights in the early afternoon on a mid-summer day.

    And I can't stop the seas turning ever more acidic or any of the multitude etcs that I won't bother listing.

    We've arrived. Actually, we've been here for quite some time and just haven't recognised it. So how about we recast "how do we get there" as "how do we get away from here"?

    Step one would be to acknowledge all of the things that got us here in the first place so that we can reject them wholesale.

    And on that front, this story offers up possibilities for those who are into a bit of lateral thinking. Jordi Casamitjana is looking to establish his vegan world view as a philosophical belief so he can claim the same protections as afforded religious belief. The Guardian does some giggly piss ripping – which is to be expected. The salient point though, is that a few years back a UK court found a worker's take on global warming was a religious belief – meaning the worker was able to use the Human Rights Act to combat discrimination in the workplace (he had been fired for refusing to fly on work business and the original decision may have been appealed – I don't know).

    But you get the point, yes?

    If cases like these stand, then any employer or government etc, asking anyone to partake in any activity that contributes to global warming can be resisted, denied and kicked into touch.

    And that is the moving away from here to there we need to be getting on with. 😉

    • RedLogix 5.1

      This morning my partner has been talking with a friend of ours who was on the beach at Mallacoota yesterday afternoon. But for a miraculous wind change at the last few minutes, we could have seen a mass casualty event. There were 4000 people there, not all would have survived if the firestorm had gone over them. It was fucking intense.

      This drama is playing out in many Australian locations this summer and it is changing the underlying way people are thinking. Humans have a lot of conceptual difficulty evaluating long term risk. It's never simple and easy to get wrong. For instance we now know that grinding concrete is a serious health risk; but it took decades of painstaking data and multi-factorial analysis to prove this. 

      In terms of bushfire there is no direct link between any one fire and climate change; just as someone with silicosis cannot point to any single kitchen bench and say 'that one killed me'. Bushfires are even more complex, with multiple factors involved, yet this season will be the turning point; at some point their government is going to have to face an explicit political trade off … do we protect a relatively small number of jobs in the coal industry (even if they are politically valuable), or do we let the country burn to the ground?  A few years ago they could safely pretend there was no link, today much less so.

      Take a look at today's ABC News front page … at least six major articles on the topic. Things are moving, and humans are adapting. We are remarkably good at that when we have to.

      • Robert Guyton 5.1.1

        "it is changing the underlying way people are thinking"

        Yes to that. Those of us already sufficiently startled by events haven't dared hope the rest of humanity might be similarly startled in the short-term, but I think we are seeing that happen right now. This could change everything.

         

      • Robert Guyton 5.1.2

        It's coming to a head this summer…

         

        • Bill 5.1.2.1

          Hmm. Can't deny a growing sense of foreboding. Australian bushfires that would cover…well, there's a graphic through the link laying the area over the N. Island.

          High summer temperatures right now in the middle of winter in the land where I come from.

          A 'thousand and one' little stories with "never seen before" claims within them (though almost always accompanied with some bullshit about 1912 or 1875 as though "still normal")

        • Robert Guyton 5.1.2.2

          For example:

          • Bill 5.1.2.2.1

            ?

            I'm referring to all those stories about rain and heat never experienced before that come with caveats from the metrological record that shows greater flooding occured once in the village of  "Wheresit" just over the hill from where the current flooding is.

            Or, and certainly in relation to the UK, forever trying to pull the summer of '76 out the bag when talking about heat and comparing a 1 in 350 year event from 40 odd years ago to whatever current heatwave so as to suggest we are somehow still in the realm of 'normal'.

          • Janet 5.1.2.2.2

            “This is catastrophic climate change right now. It's not a problem for future generations, it's our problem and we must change our way of living.”

             

            Yes exactly, and how many changes has each household made to how they “live” daily in NZ  in the last year.. about zero. Have they stopped buying and buying  – are they thinking about quality and longevity of what they do buy – Have they even started thinking  need as opposed to th’need?

            Has there been government funded advertising to stop people in their tracks and take a look at the extravagant ways they are living?

            What has the government done to turn the population to less wasteful ways? Yes, no plastic bags in supermarket  but I notice in Auckland The Herald comes wrapped in a plastic bag every day now, no matter what the weather !

            Has the government regulated to stop short life, poor quality products beinging imported into NZ yet? No they prefer “free trade “ They prefer anti climate change globalised product sourcing and  trading rather than building up our self-sufficiency as a nation again.

            Have you like me, got a drawerful of electronic equipment because nothing fits each other, USBs, chargers etc. Has the government done anything to rationalise and standardise things like this.Even my car can recharge at only one of 5 different charging stations due to incompatibility.

            They keep importing more and more people into NZ to create unwanted growth – They keep on with the biggering and biggering of the New Zealand population to keep biggering and biggering NZ to some distant undefined point of collapse !

            Go read Th

      • Anne 5.1.3

        I'm looking forward with considerable hope to the Australian nation-wide debate that must surely follow this unprecedented event  – in terms of numeracy and ferocity. Can people power turn a government round and force them to face reality? We'll have to wait and see.

    • pat 5.2

      sinking lid on oil imports

  6. Puckish Rogue 6

    Petition the government to make a law that states that any product in NZ that can be made with recycled products must be made with at least 75% recycled materials and if 75% is too low then increase within reason

    Theres my contribution

  7. Stuart Munro 7

    I'd suggest building resilience locally. Typical cities have 3-5 days food reserves. See if you can garden an extra day into that. Swap some seed or cuttings or preserves across the fence. Change a small lawn up to a vigorous garden like edible canna lilies in case things go south. Get some hemp in after the referendum – humans ate it and wore it long before we smoked it. Think about saving a bit of stormwater & making some kind of windbreak.

    • Robert Guyton 7.1

      Whadda ya mean, "go south" smiley

      Yes to all your other ideas. Local is it, local it is.

       

      • Stuart Munro 7.1.1

        Well, if I recall, much south of you things get a bit salty – and not too warm. Much as I miss the cod livers and other perks, it's not an ecosystem that needs too much intervention – 'cept maybe where deoxygenated poo-laden runoff is eutrophying estuaries.

        Reckon you've been doing the horizontal robustness thing for a while – still a good trick though. The self-styled top end have been kind of dragging their feet. 

        If you're up for a challenge, this might be worth a crack.  A number of folk local to this site would probably love to help.

        • Robert Guyton 7.1.1.1

          "not too warm" will be a great selling point soon, Stuart smiley

          Funny you should mention the royals…their new-found conscience and consciousness will move conservative southerners/NZ-landers, subtly, toward change of the sort we need. Citing those folk, Andrew et all, is potentially a powerful catalyst for change where such opinions are regarded highly, and I plan to do just that smiley

           

          • Stuart Munro 7.1.1.1.1

            Good for you – if you need someone to shovel compost, I'm up for it.

            • Robert Guyton 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Shovel? We don't "shovel" we … ease

              You're welcome to ease alongside of us…

               

  8. Robert Guyton 8

    "Meet Amina from Lombok, Indonesia 🇮🇩

    “I’m half Indonesian, half Swiss. After studying entrepreneurship in France, I decided to buy a one-way ticket to Lombok, Indonesia to help my parents with their homestay and organic farm project. I have been here for two years now and started being involved in gardening for about a year.

    In the summer of 2018, we had a series of deadly earthquakes in Lombok. For over a month, we had no electricity, fuel was only allowed for ambulances and military, so of course no more goods were circulating within the North of the island. All the shops and the markets were closed so most of the people relied on donations and help from NGOs or private donors. It was exactly at that moment that I realized how important it is to be able to eat from your garden.

    Having zero knowledge and skills about gardening, I started to study permaculture concepts on my own and tried to figure out how we could grow food in such an extremely dry environment. I read books, visited farms, watched documentaries, talked with other gardeners and experimented a lot of different techniques in our garden (and failed numerous times!).

    I grow food to show that everything is possible! It may not always be easy, especially where we live, but it’s possible as long as you take good care of your soil. Being in a very secluded area of the island, we also do not have access to healthy organic vegetables, so growing food in our own garden makes a lot of sense. For me the biggest reward from gardening is to be able to share the results of my hard work at the family table. Every produce is a victory and nothing tastes better than the food coming from your garden!

    We are located in Loloan Village; in the North of Lombok, Indonesia. We have 1 hectare land. For now our growing space is 230 square meter but we plan to expand slowly to half of the land. When we bought this land, it was an abandoned cashew tree orchard. So we still have cashew trees and we planted various fruit trees in different spaces of our land and in our food forest.

    We plant our vegetables in raised beds. We dig our beds approximately 1 meter deep and add layers using organic matter. We start the bottom layer with big logs that we can find in the forest. The best is to use very old logs which will act like sponges, then we add smaller wood, leaves, green layers (such as kitchen scraps, grass cuttings…). On top of it we put our soil and add some compost. This type of bed should last 5 to 10 years depending on the decomposition speed. Also we never leave our soil naked, which helps in creating a living soil and keeps the soil fresh and humid.

    Being in an arid area, all the excess water is very precious to us. That is why we made different banana circles to recycle grey water from our kitchen and bathrooms. It is a very efficient and easy way to create biomass, to make compost and on top of that you grow more food! We also started a food forest on the back of our land. With this project we hope to build soil, regenerate the landscape and attract more insects, pollinators and birds.

    It’s hard to believe that 30 years ago, where we are now used to be an abundant forest with wild deer and horses and the rivers were flowing all year long. All the trees were cut down for commercial purposes and today all the rivers have dried out and almost no native trees left.

    At our farm, we tried to dig two wells and went 50 meters deep and we still could not find any water. The soil is very poor in nutrients, which is the reason why villagers only plant during rainy season, using a lot of pesticides and monoculture.

    A lot of people come over and ask : why do you grow food here? You don’t have access to water, the soil is very poor, the weather is extremely hot and dry…At Saifana, despite being a farm, our goal isn’t productivity. We don’t aim to sell fresh vegetables in the market. Our purpose here is to be a space of experimentation and exchange, a place where we actually show and demonstrate how it’s possible to grow food with the climate challenges we face today. It’s all about regenerating the soil and using permaculture and agroecology methods which are adapted to your.."

    Read more here:

    https://www.facebook.com/humanswhogrowfood/posts/1039907796355756?__tn__=K-R 

  9. Robert Guyton 9

    "

    Meet John Moody from Irvington, Kentucky, United States 🇺🇸

    “Had you met me in my teens, you would have said, “He is never, ever going to be a homesteader or farmer.” I had four food groups—sugary breakfast cereals, cookies, eggs (with sugar), and candy. I was a pasty- skinned, video-game-playing, cartoon-watching child of the ’80s. I spent some time outdoors, generally only when my parents made me.

    Had you met me in college, you would have said, “He is never, ever going to be a homesteader or farmer.” I had eight food groups. I still played a lot of video games and watched a fair amount of TV, though I had become very active in sports as well.

    Had you met me in my early twenties, you would still have said, “He is never, ever going to be a homesteader or farmer.” That is, until I developed duodenal ulcers. Pain 24/7, like a small band of traveling dwarves, was mining my insides while holding a Metallica meth-fueled rave. Doctors could only offer me a lifetime of drugs. Instead, my then fiancée and now wife and I went with a radical change to our approach to food. We went from Kroger and Sam’s Club to Wild Oats and Whole Paycheck. We graduated to the farmer’s market, a CSA, and raw milk, and then to starting a food-buying club, the Whole Life Buying Club in Louisville, Kentucky that serves over a hundred families and helps dozens of farmers and artisans connect via local, real foods and products."

    https://www.facebook.com/humanswhogrowfood/posts/1038540719825797?__tn__=K-R

  10. WeTheBleeple 10

    If you add peaches to rhubarb and stew them with sugar to taste – when you first explore this combo in your mouth the complexity and sumptiousness will for one moment transport you away from the nightmare unfolding in front of us.

    Each drought further depletes the aquifers it's only a matter of time before NZ is parched too. Rainfall is the most precious of resources, and we direct it straight back out to sea. That has to change.

     

    • Sacha 10.1

      we direct it straight back out to sea

      Um, doesn't our landscape do that? Not aware of any infrastructure projects piping water from mountains to beaches.

      • Sabine 10.1.1

        well, every bit of road, drive way, concreted patch etc will cause runoff that goes straight into the strom drains rather. 

        But then i guess that is not what some would call ' infrastructure'. 🙂 right? 

        • Sacha 10.1.1.1

          Good point.

          • WeTheBleeple 10.1.1.1.1

            We drain entire regions and keep the drain networks in place to further exacerbate the problem. Cities and towns are largely impervious surfaces. Farms drain farms, towns drain towns, then drought hits and we fight over water use.

          • weka 10.1.1.1.2

            deforestation causes drainage, as does other rural land management eg straightening streams or building canals to divert water for hydro or irrigation. These things prevent normal rainfall from being stored in the land (which is what happens in intact ecosystems, native or non-native).

            Mining water from the aquifers in the way we do is incredibly stupid.

  11. Robert Guyton 11

    Attract rain, give it cause to fall, meet it as it falls, with vegetation arrayed as forest, buffer its arrival on the ground with a naturally-formed mattress of leaves and twigs, stitched together with fungal threads, facilitate it's gradual descent below the surface with a network of holes, tunnels and perforations made by tiny living creatures and the spent roots of short-lived plants, secure it with simple carbon molecules reduced from organic materials by bacteria and fungi, creating a subsoil "lake" that's protected from evaporation by the material around and above it and above all, don't poison the well; don't spray pesticide, herbicide, molluscicide, fungicide; biocides of any sort and don't rip it up either; stop digging (we're in a hole, doncha know!).

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    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 days ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    2 days ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    3 days ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    3 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    3 days ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    4 days ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    4 days ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    5 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    6 days ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    6 days ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    6 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    7 days ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    7 days ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    1 week ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    1 week ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
    Our Good Fortune: Precisely because she has never been an ideologue (she calls herself a “pragmatic idealist”) Jacinda Ardern has a political nimbleness and spontaneity which, when infused with her exceptional emotional intelligence, produces spectacular demonstrations of leadership. Jacinda's empathic political personality contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    1 week ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Black April, May and June?
    Worldwide, the 1918 influenza epidemic – wrongly called ‘Spanish’ flu – lasted about two years. However, it lasted about six weeks in New Zealand (remembered as ‘Black November’, because the dead turned a purplish-black). It is thought about 7000 Pakeha died and 2,500 Maori. The population mortality rate was about ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID 19 has struck… as has a lot of terrible ineptitude from far too many
    In a world and a time when the worst off and most vulnerable have been asked, time and again, to foot the bill for the complete subjugating to the will of the 1% thanks to the GFC, at a point where the world as a whole is now seeing quite ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • What’s in the Coronavirus Package?
    With the economy already reeling from a crisis that’s barely begun, the Government today sought to provide reassurance to workers and businesses in the form of a massive phallic pun to insert much-needed cash into the private sector and help fight the looming pandemic. Here are the key components: $5.1 ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • I just had my benefit suspended during a fucking pandemic
    I am a member of the working poor and so still need state welfare to make rent. So I had booked an appointment for yesterday with my caseworker at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) to apply for a transition to work grant. However the current health advice in New ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago
  • A good first step
    Today the government announced a financial package to deal with the effects of the pandemic. So far, it looks good: an initial $500 million for health to deal with immediate priorities, wage subsidies for affected businesses, $585 a week from WINZ for people self-isolating who can't work from home, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: COVID-19 Alert Level 4
    The COVID-19 situation in New Zealand is moving fast - and to avoid what we've seen overseas - the Government's response must be to move fast too. We're committed to keeping New Zealanders safe and well-informed every step of the way. ...
    20 hours ago
  • SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency an...
    Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The scale of what we face right now is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Overcoming it is our common purpose. ...
    4 days ago
  • Winston Peters urging New Zealanders overseas to stay put
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging New Zealanders overseas to stay where they are amid the COVID-19 pandemic. "We are reaching a point where the best option for most New Zealanders offshore is to shelter in place, by preparing to safely stay where they are.” "This includes following the instructions ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealanders overseas encouraged to shelter in place
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging the tens of thousands of New Zealanders travelling overseas to consider sheltering in place, in light of COVID-19.  “Since 18 March, we have been warning New Zealanders offshore that the window for flying ...
    5 days ago
  • Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare
    Ground-breaking law has passed that will decriminalise abortion and ensure women and pregnant people seeking abortions have compassionate healthcare. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Package supports Kiwis to put collective health first
    The Green Party says that the measures announced by the Government today will help families and businesses to prioritise our collective health and wellbeing in the response to COVID-19. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: COVID-19 rescue package ‘more significant’ than any worldwide
    As New Zealanders brace for a global downturn due to Covid-19, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says his Coalition Government’s rescue package "more significant" than any other he's seen around the world. The Coalition is to reveal a multi-billion-dollar stimulus plan on Tuesday afternoon designed to cushion the economic blow ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Our response to COVID-19
    We know some people are feeling anxious about COVID-19. While the situation is serious, New Zealand has a world-class health system and we’re well-prepared to keep New Zealanders safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Demerit Points System’ will address youth crime
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill drawn from the ballot today seeks to overhaul the youth justice system by instigating a system of demerit points for offences committed by young offenders. “The ‘Youth Justice Demerit Point System’ will put an end to ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investment in kingfish farming
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $6 million in a land-based aquaculture pilot to see whether yellowtail kingfish can be commercially farmed in Northland, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. A recirculating land-based aquaculture system will be built and operated ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1BT grants for Northland planting
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Forestry Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced two One Billion Trees programme grants of more than $1.18 million to help hapu and iwi in Northland restore whenua and moana. “Many communities around Aotearoa have benefited from One Billion Trees funding since the programme was launched ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand reaffirms support for Flight MH17 judicial process
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahead of the start of the criminal trial in the Netherlands on 9 March, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has reaffirmed the need to establish truth, accountability and justice for the downing of Flight MH17 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF investment in green hydrogen
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister The Government is investing $19.9 million through the Provincial Growth Fund in a game-changing hydrogen energy facility in South Taranaki, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The development of alternative energy initiatives like this one is vital for the Taranaki region’s economy. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Coronavirus support for Pacific
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Minister for Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand is partnering with countries in the Pacific to ensure they are prepared for, and able to respond to the global threat of Coronavirus (COVID-19). “There are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Green Party passes landmark law to ensure deaf and disabled voices heard equally in democracy
    Chlöe Swarbrick's Members Bill to support disabled general election candidates has passed into law. ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    3 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
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    3 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
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    4 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
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    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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    4 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
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    4 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
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    4 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
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    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
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    4 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
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    5 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
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    5 days ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
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    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
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    6 days ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
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    6 days ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
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    6 days ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
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    7 days ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
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    7 days ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
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    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
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    1 week ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
    Kia ora koutou katoa I’m speaking directly to all New Zealanders today to give you as much certainty and clarity as we can as we fight Covid-19. Over the past few weeks, the world has changed. And it has changed very quickly. In February it would have seemed unimaginable to ...
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    1 week ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
    JOINT MINISTERIAL STATEMENT BY SINGAPORE AND NEW ZEALAND AFFIRMING COMMITMENT TO ENSURING SUPPLY CHAIN CONNECTIVITY AMIDST THE COVID-19 SITUATION  The COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis.  As part of our collective response to combat COVID-19, Singapore and New Zealand are committed to maintaining open and connected supply chains. We ...
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    1 week ago
  • Transit between Australia and New Zealand
    Travel restrictions, closing our border to almost all travelers came into force from 23:59 on Thursday 19 March 2020 (NZDT).  All airlines were informed of these restrictions before they came into force. Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says “The transit of passengers between Australia and New Zealand has been agreed upon and ...
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    1 week ago
  • $100 million to redeploy workers
    The Government has allocated $100 million to help redeploy workers affected by the economic impact of COVID-19, with the hard-hit region of Gisborne-Tairāwhiti to be the first helped, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford, Forestry and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson announced today. Phil Twyford ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More support for wood processing
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is ramping up support for Tairāwhiti’s wood processing sector to bolster the region’s economy at a time of heightened uncertainty, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Following earlier announcements today of a regional support package for Tairāwhiti, Minister Jones has also announced a ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt steps in to protect Air New Zealand
    The Coalition Government has stepped in to protect Air New Zealand with a significant financial deal that protects essential routes and allows the company to keep operating. The Government and Air New Zealand have agreed a debt funding agreement through commercial 24-month loan facilities of up to $900 million*. The ...
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    1 week ago
  • Stronger border measures to protect NZers from COVID-19
    The Government has taken further measures to protect New Zealanders from the COVID-19 virus, effectively stopping all people from boarding a plane to New Zealand from 11:59pm today, except for returning New Zealanders, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today.  New Zealanders’ partners, legal guardians or any dependent children travelling with ...
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    1 week ago
  • Action on indoor gatherings and events to protect public health
    The Government has reinforced its commitment to protecting the health of New Zealanders from COVID-19 through the cancellation of indoor events with more than 100 people.  “Protecting the health of New Zealanders is our number one priority, and that means we need to reduce the risks associated with large gatherings,” ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealanders advised not to travel overseas
    The New Zealand Government is advising New Zealanders not to travel overseas due to COVID-19, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced. “We are raising our travel advice to the highest level: do not travel,” Mr Peters said. “This is the first time the New Zealand Government has advised New Zealanders ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt announces aviation relief package
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today outlined the first tranche of the $600 million aviation sector relief package announced earlier this week as part of the Government’s $12.1 billion COVID-19 economic response. The initial part of the aviation package aims to secure the operators of New Zealand’s aviation security system, and ...
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    1 week ago