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Introducing Campaign Hub 2008

Written By: - Date published: 3:37 pm, September 11th, 2008 - 67 comments
Categories: activism, election 2008 - Tags:

Helena Catt, head of the Electoral Commission, says the EFA has had a ‘chilling effect’ on democratic participation. I’m convinced that that is a foolish position based on a belief that ‘democratic participation’ is rich lobby groups paying for ads and billboards, trying to market to us. What the EFA has actually done is democratise participation in democracy. No longer are ordinary people drowned out by the rich organisations. Now, people have the opportunity to be heard in whichever way they choose, they just need to get out there and do it. Anybody can be a third party if they choose, you just have to have the decency to tell the people who you’re trying to influence who you are.

One measure of the health of democratic participation is the vibrancy of the blogosphere. Since we installed our stats package in March, our pageviews have tripled. During the first nine days of this month, Kiwis spent over 125,000 minutes on this blog alone, making over 2500 comments. If that’s not healthy democratic participation, I don’t know what is.

In my darker moments, however, I fear that the blogosphere has become a substitute for real-world action for some. On the one hand, its fantastic to be able to discuss issues with some many intelligent thoughtful people and the blogosphere is a source of quality information and debate in a way that the mainstream media simply is not. On the other hand, spending time trying to convince some libertarian that we shouldn’t just let the poor starve is not as productive as getting out there and trying to show ordinary Kiwis that we’re better off with a left-wing government than National.

I would encourage each one of you to spend time in the next eight and a half weeks contributing to keeping the Left in power. That could be by assisting a political party or a third party campaign, or you do something off your own bat. I really encourage the latter. Don’t wait to be led; lead yourself. Get a few mates together, plan and carry out some political theatre. Make up some posters, leaflets, banners and get them out around your community. There is nothing to stop you doing this, nothing. And its great fun too. We had a ball at the ‘Great New Zealand Sell-off’ protest outside the National party conference. The other day me and a mate spent a couple of hours dropping some leaflets in mailboxes – nice walk in the sun, had some laughs, spread the good word. Easy.

To help out, we’re launching the Campaign Hub 2008 page on The Standard which is twinned with a Campaign Hub Facebook group. The campaign hub will carry info on how you can help out and tips for getting active. Best of all, you can send us your poster and leaflet ideas, and we’ll put them up so people around the country can print them off.

Have a gander, sign up, use the resources at the Campaign Hub, or just get into it. It’s only 58 days until the election, make it count.

Remember, voting should not be the pinnacle of your participation in democracy. It should be only the beginning.

67 comments on “Introducing Campaign Hub 2008”

  1. I hope the Vote With Both Eyes Open group are cool with me linking to their posters, which are available for download already on botheyesopen.org.nz… and stealing a little bit of their text for the ‘tips’ section

    looking forward to seeing the designs you send in

  2. higherstandard 2

    Can I turn the hose on you if you come knocking at my door ?

    🙂

  3. randal 3

    rock on dude…i’ll check back to hip.hq for some really COOL t-shirts!

  4. you’re a real ad for toryism HS.

  5. Vanilla Eis 5

    Not just the left SP – I’d like to see the right get involved as well. Despite my leanings, I encourage all of my friends to vote regardless because I’d much rather they voted for a party that I personally dislike than stay at home out of apathy on election day. I also try and tell them why I’m voting the way I will, but some won’t hear a word of it.

    So I’d also like to invite any dirty tories out there to also make up some fliers, do some street theatre and generally get into the spirit of things.

    Widespread participation is the best way to make our democracy stronger, and that requires all sides to come to the table.

  6. Vanilla. Agree with the sentiments, especially about voting. The Hub is designed for the Left only but I’m sure they can organise themselves

  7. “…and the blogosphere is a source of quality information and debate…”

    (cough) er…as any good public librarian or information science teacher/tutor/lecturer will tell you: it sure as hell isn’t.

    As for your comment in regard to Helena Catt- well frankly I trust the judgment of a paid, professional ,highly qualified ,specialized and impartial public servant in regard to the EFA more than I would any member of this govt or Labour party activists. But hey, perhaps you’ll tell me the public service are all a bunch of lazy know nothing rotters?
    Now there would be a flip flop of titanic proportions.

    Well, I’m off to stuff some mailboxes for National.
    P.S remember to put your name and address on any home made material advocating people to vote for Labour etc.

    Cheers 😉

  8. BeShakey 8

    “(cough) er as any good public librarian or information science teacher/tutor/lecturer will tell you: it sure as hell isn’t.”

    I suspect they would tell you it isn’t a UNIFORM source of quality information and debate. But I would be surprised if they said there was absolutely nothing of value.

    With regard to Helena Catt, a paid, professional, highly qualified, specialised and impartial public servant, wouldn’t enter into political debates in their professional role. I haven’t seen the context for her comment, but I’d hope it changes the effect of it significantly.

  9. Vanilla Eis 9

    SP: Oh, of course I expect them to organise themselves – lord knows some of them have the funding! I found out the other day that one of my more prominent right-wing classmates was sponsored by Bob Jones while at Vic Uni. Not for anything in particular, just for being right wing and promising!

    Anyway, I digress.

    The tories can organise themselves to vote and campaign, but I very much hope they do.

  10. “As for your comment in regard to Helena Catt- well frankly I trust the judgment of a paid, professional ,highly qualified ,specialized and impartial public servant in regard to the EFA”

    Actually no, you only trust her judgement becuase shes saying what you want to hear, anything else and she woudl be another labour lacky with her snout in the trough.

  11. Matthew Pilott 11

    I would encourage each one of you to spend time in the next eight and a half weeks contributing to keeping the Left in power. That could be by assisting a political party or a third party campaign, or you do something off your own bat. I really encourage the latter.

    I thought that said ‘assassinating’. Bit extreme, even for you, SP.

    I agree somewhat with getting mired in the blogosphere too. It’s not hard to feel you’re really contributing but it is a niche, albeit an expanding one, and you can also forget about the rest of the world out there, one that doesn’t pay as much attention to politics as those in this sphere.

    No substitute for getting out there.

  12. Well, I’m off to stuff some mailboxes for National.

    But Ricky – you told me you were not a National Party activist:

    Robinsod: sorry old boy/old girl I’m not one of the party faithful of either National or Labour

    Yet more government waste

    Someone from the Nats lying??? Say it ain’t so ricky. Say it aint so.

  13. Oh yeah – and my follow up comment from way back then:

    Richard – I know you are a National party activist. Why are you (and so many other tories) ashamed to admit it?

    The first step to fixing the problem is acknowledging it Ricky…

  14. Totally agree, people should get out there and campaign for the party of their choice, grass roots politicians I think they call it.

    I don’t think bloggers have that much impact though, take a look at 2006 in the USA with Lieberman .

    Anyway, glad your doing your bit, by putting leaflets in people’s mailboxes, even though its for a party I don’t support, who knows a national party supporter by put National leaflets in your letterbox. Or have a group of National supports marching and chanting down your street.

    I hope the left now realizes free speech applies to everybody.

    Oh I would appreciate any tips you could give me.

  15. Its only 58 days till the election?????

  16. Brett. Based on Nov 8 (19 days left in Sept, 31 in Oct, 8 in Nov).

    If Nats want to chant down Highbury Rd, they’re more than welcome.. bit hilly though and not too many jokers about.

    Richard. You’re right, materials should be authorised, there’s info on that on the Campaign Hub page http://www.thestandard.org.nz/?page_id=2984

  17. Patrick 17

    Brett – good luck! I’m sure many people on the left would love to have National’s ‘policies’ distributed to homes.

    I do agree with you about the political impact bloggers can have though, Ron Paul is probably a more recent example of a huge political savvy online following that simply did not exist offline.

    I’ve had a friend describe blogging as talk back radio for young people, and sadly I think it’s a pretty accurate description, as much as I enjoy it!

    Hehe, recaptcha: persuade on

  18. Daveski 18

    I don’t see any publicity about the election date unless the Standard/SP does have a direct line to the 9th floor
    [self-moderation: read the about pages and repent and the BOFH will get you!]

    Likewise, I have difficulty with the way in which you simply dismiss negative views of the EFA from impartial and non-political qangos. I can only imagine the outrage if any National-govt legislation had the same result.

  19. Daveski. Like everyone else, I’ve worked out the election will almost certainly be on Nov 8 by simple process of elimination. Do you really think that if I did have a direct line to the 9th floor I would be revealing it through indirect references?

    I don’t ‘simply dismiss’ Catt’s comments, I argue they are wrong by referring to evidence that contradicts her comments. She is neither automatically right, nor automatically wrong. And I would note that you and the rest of the Kiwiblog Right have repeatedly attacked Catt for the ECs decisions this year when National, Farrar etc have tried to abuse the EFA to prevent unions and others from having their voice and have failed miserably.

  20. Daveski 20

    SP – attempt at humour C-

    It does raise the question (no begging allowed) as to why the date hasn’t been formalised.

    And while I can’t accuse you of being joined to the 9th floor hip, you can’t paint me with the Kiwiblog brush.

  21. Patrick. I think there’s more to blogging than that, especially in NZ with its shallow pool of professional media. The major blogs undoubtedly influence reporting and flows on into the discourse. Indeed, that was one reason The Standard was set up, because journos were just running National’s lines received via Farrar without question. I think there’s also an important informative role. Remember when people always used to talk about benefit numbers exploding under Labour? That’s a view you could hold if you just read the mainstream media but leftwing blogs have destroyed arguments like that so comprehensively time and again that you rarely see even the most rabid Kiwiblog Right types making them anymore.

    But, yeah, mostly it’s good fun and an opportunity to talk politics.

  22. Patrick 22

    Oh that’s certainly true, and we’ve seen several examples already this year of blogs breaking major news stories, and it’s great to see. Another, unfortunate side effect is seeing Farrar labeled a “political commentator”.

    But for the most part it’s just people talking to the wind, but boy is it fun hehe.

  23. Tane 23

    SP, I’d recommend doing an email list too. Not everyone uses facebook.

  24. Daveski 24

    Both Kiwiblog and the Standard add considerably to the political landscape. Both are partisan, undoubtedly, and both discount the merits of the other.

    I don’t think anyone would go to either to look for balanced analysis but there is undoubtedly passionate discussion on both sites.

    Whether the blogosphere will make any different to the election remains to be seen.

  25. I would suggest that membership of political parties and organisations was a better proxy for democratic involvement than how many hits The Standard gets 😉

  26. Ari 26

    Both Kiwiblog and the Standard add considerably to the political landscape. Both are partisan, undoubtedly, and both discount the merits of the other.

    I don’t think anyone would go to either to look for balanced analysis but there is undoubtedly passionate discussion on both sites.

    Whether the blogosphere will make any different to the election remains to be seen.

    A lot of sentiments being expressed in the blogosphere have made their way into the general election discourse. Whether that means it’s influential is a different matter, but it suggests the possibility at least.

    As for partisanship- it would certainly be nice to have a site that’s either non-partisan or multi-partisan, but I don’t see that happening any time soon.

  27. lprent 27

    Daveski:

    It does raise the question (no begging allowed) as to why the date hasn’t been formalised.

    It is formalised.

    An election must be no more than 38? months from the date of the previous one. Our previous one was Sept 17 2005. So this one is no later than Nov 17 2008.

    It must have at least 6 weeks notice from the time that the election is called to when it is performed.

    The GG can call the election, but in practice it is usually triggered by the PM resigning the government, and staying on in a caretaking role (or something daft like that is the convention).

    These sites aren’t there for balanced analysis. They’re there for prying around anything related to politics on a partisan basis and disseminating it.

    If you have a look at the About for this site, you’ll find that it is quite explicit about being there to support the labour movement activists. It does this by providing a discussion area and a way of distributing ideas. The mere fact of having debate running across the political divides is just a bonus (and largely due to the moderators and myself not wanting to look at the same old tropes over and over again).

    For me the best thing about the site is when I hear people repeating points to me and referencing the site as being where they came from. That is why it is here.

    SP: Also 7.8GB of data transferred in 10.7 days. This after I’ve spent days tweaking things to minimize data transfers. My bloody swap is running at about 50MB which means that soon I’ll have to start thinking about upping the RAM again.

    Currently the lurker to commentator ratio is creeping close to 50:1. Most of the readers don’t go into comments – they read the posts up on the front page.

    I’m pretty politically active outside the blogs, but not in street theatre, etc.

  28. r0b 28

    Excellent post – one of the best. And what a good idea to set up Campaign Hub. Outstanding!

    I’m up to my shapely ass in real world campaigning, and can only encourage others (of all political persuasions, but hmm maybe especially you Greens and lefties!) to get out there and get involved. As Vanilla Eis said so cogently above, it’s all about strengthening democracy.

    And on that unusually hopeful note, toodle pip!

  29. Phil 29

    Re; printing leaflets about John Key

    I don’t mean to be picky, but “climate change is a hoax” wasn’t the direct quote

  30. Still raining but spring is in the air 30

    I will go up into my attic and get down some of my eighties badges supporting labour and unions and will wear them even though I will look a complete gonk! (-:

    I already volunteer as a literacy tutor and between working full-time and being a full-time mum, that is all I can manage without everything turning to complete crap.

  31. IrishBill 31

    “I’m up to my shapely ass”

    I had no idea you and ‘sod were an item.

  32. Billy 32

    I’ve never heard anyone describe ‘sod as “shapely”. And he’s a donkey.

  33. r0b 33

    I had no idea you and ‘sod were an item.

    Alas, ‘sod is already taken, I can only dream of what might have been.

  34. forget it.. 3 strikes and all that!!!

  35. Cecil 35

    Great idea get active punch a politician. Clever Trevor did.

  36. explanation: I lost the first two comments without any effort whatsoever.. maybe some improvement to the encryption thing is in order.. increases receptivity.. etc

  37. randal 37

    in the mentime please send donations or sign up to donate to the party that has done more for new zealand in the last nine years than national has ever done in this century!

  38. Cecil 38

    RANDAL – never in New Zealand’s history have so many Labour MP’s been caught up in sordid corruption. Labour are history, nobody in their right mind would vote for the deceptive, despicable creeps!!

  39. r0b 39

    RANDAL – never in New Zealand’s history have any Labour MP’s been caught up in sordid corruption.

    Fixed that for you.

  40. Cecil 40

    r0b – when does Fatty Field appear in the criminal dock?
    Will he use the standard lying Labour lawyer?
    Who will Trevor punch out election night?
    Will Peter kiss another man election night?

  41. r0b 41

    Ahh Cecil that didn’t take long did it. Plonk.

  42. Quoth the Raven 42

    Who will Trevor punch out election night?

    Whenever I read anything about Mallard like the above, I can’t help but mention Gerry two tonne Brownlee, who actually got convicted of assault.

  43. Robinsod, I didn’t know my comments have meant so much to you that you cling on to them. I don’t know if I should be flattered or creeped out.
    With the future of NZ at stake in this election I am defiantly a Nat activist now. I hope that will keep you warm at night, I doubt much else does 😉
    (Sorry with that last comment, I’m descending to your level, I ‘ll stop that.)

    Killinginthenameof (that’s a hell of a tag!) You assume too much and I would turn your comment around and say the judgment of Dr Catt is being called ‘foolish’ here because she implies criticism of Labours EFA. If she was saying everything is fine and dandy then people here would be saying she is a trusted, respected, professional and impartial civil servant whose judgment is far better than the oppositions and so on.

    Here is the context of Dr Catts comments which came from a recent speech she gave in her professional capacity:
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10530509
    Judge them as you wish. If you find the nzherald an unacceptable source then email her office for a copy of the transcript of her speech. I’m sure her office would be happy to supply it.
    Steve: Your right, we found a leaflet drop walk round the block very enjoyable, even if it was a bit chilly J

  44. higherstandard 44

    QTR

    There is a very good and humorous look at the biff in NZ politics over the years here if you want a chuckle.

    http://nzquest.blogspot.com/2008/02/rumble-in-bumble-violence-in-nz.html

  45. tothetight 45

    For posters why not use some of the Russian ones in WW2 showing JK in a German uniform and HC as a solider saving the motherland by slaying JK.

  46. higherstandard 46

    Tothelight

    I’m not sure which is the more absurd comparing John Key to a Nazi or Helen Clark to a Stalinist.

  47. higherstandard 47

    Eh moderation, which word’s in the naughty list ?

  48. mike 48

    Nice graphics SP, it looks like you are recruiting for the mongrel mob.

    Mind you I think you will need any help you can get if the next poll figures are anything to go by…

  49. Quoth the Raven 49

    Good article, thanks HS. I wish people wouldn’t get so hung up about a bit of biff in parliament.

  50. Cecil 50

    Parliament is the highest court in the land. I must tell the judge the next time that a “bit of biff” is ok mate !!

  51. T-Rex 51

    Note to those distributing National party policy – Don’t bother hitting any of the cafes, they’ve already been covered.

    Great initiative, go hard! I’m ill placed for leaflet dropping, but I’ll try and come up with something posterworthy.

  52. “Killinginthenameof (that’s a hell of a tag!)”

    Cheers!

    “Here is the context of Dr Catts comments which came from a recent speech she gave in her professional capacity:
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10530509

    My main thing is does she mean chilling like putting something in the freezer, cools it down a bit, not quite so active. Or does she mean chilling like security cameras on every lamp post and people dissapearing in the dark of night. I’m hopeless at english, and can’t really pick which. I’d like to think she means the former, but Farrar and co are certainly presenting it as the latter. I honestly don’t know.

  53. Dean 53

    “Ahh Cecil that didn’t take long did it.”

    Field was only guilty of trying to help his constituents, right r0b?

  54. r0b 54

    Nah Dean Fields was guilty of a whole lot more than that from the sound of it.

  55. Cecil 55

    More expensive state funded litigation caused by unsavoury Labour MP’S . It’s bloody disgusting and now the Winston saga. When will it end Gladys?

  56. Quoth the Raven 56

    Cecil – A troll aren’t you. Let’s have a think about the unsavoury National MPs. Gerry Brownless done for assault, Nick Carter done for drunk driving, Shane Arden got charged with disorderly behaviour. Who was the last party to be investigated by the SFO. That’s right it was National in 1998. Didn’t national “miscalculate its GST” at the last election. What party did Winston Peters used to belong to?

  57. Dean 57

    r0b:

    “Nah Dean Fields was guilty of a whole lot more than that from the sound of it.”

    Now there’s an ex Labour MP we don’t hear much about these days. I wonder what adjectives Helen could find to describe such an individual?

  58. Razorlight 58

    “Anybody can be a third party if they choose, you just have to have the decency to tell the people who you?re trying to influence who you are.”

    I don’t think many authors from The Standard or contibutors, myself included, would agree with you there SP.

    Other than yourself there are not to many on here saying who they are in their attempt to influence.

  59. Robinsod, I didn’t know my comments have meant so much to you that you cling on to them. I don’t know if I should be flattered or creeped out.

    Sorry to disappoint you ricky but you’re not that special – I just have a near photographic memory – especially for text. It’s very useful for calling idiots to account and cross-referencing all sorts of information but the downside is I’m cursed to carry every retarded blog comment I’ve ever read around in my head for the rest of my friggin life.

    Talk about a Faustian pact…

  60. randal 60

    In the westminster system of government it is the prime minister who calls the election and nobody else. that is why he/she is the prime minister,it is her prerogative. (john key note spelling and try the correct pronunciation). anyway please donate your time and cash to the party who does more for new zealand than running round whingeing and crying haRD DONE BY AS THE NATS DO.

  61. Razor, well blogs have an exemption but I don’t see the harm in having to put your name to real world political action.

  62. Phil 62

    I just have a near photographic memory – especially for text

    Oxymoron?

  63. I guess this video kinda relates to our election, its Scottish Comedian Craig Ferguson telling Americans to vote.

  64. Bill 64

    Craig Ferguson’s routine on dinosaur extinction used to be a lot funnier than this. At least proselytising that T-Rex should knit woolly jumpers would have had a noticeable effect. But voting between candidates of corporate america?

    Maybe you lose your edge when you become an American.

  65. I just have a near photographic memory – especially for text

    Oxymoron?

    Like I said Phil – every retarded comment. Thanks for adding to that burden…

  66. deemac 67

    isn’t it Catt’s job to decide what the legislation means? not to say we won’t know till it’s been tested in court – that just sounds like buck passing to me. Surely her job is well paid because it involves responsibility.

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    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    3 days ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    4 days ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    4 days ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    4 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    5 days ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    5 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
    5 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 ...
    5 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
    5 days ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    5 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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 ...
    6 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 ...
    6 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
    7 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
    7 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
    7 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 ...
    7 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
    7 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks ago

  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    6 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
    6 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 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. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
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