web analytics

Jumping the shark

Written By: - Date published: 5:08 pm, August 16th, 2008 - 78 comments
Categories: john key, spin - Tags:

Remember the photos of McDonald’s wrappers strewn on a grass verge that John Key expected us to believe was evidence people had been rifling through his electorate office’s rubbish? Was there ever a more transparent attempt to deflect attention from a bad story with an obviously faked picture? No-one believed that Key’s rubbish really had been searched; it was a desperate attempt to shift the story from the content of the secret agenda tapes to the ‘dirty tricks’ meme.. and to a degree it succeeded in that objective, the media happily spent more time speculating on who made th recordings than what they said about the governing intentions of National.

Still, no-one believed Key. Think about that. We all know, therefore, that Key and his staff deliberately faked those photos and lied to the New Zealand public. Cyncially and with planning, Key lied to the New Zealand public and was caught out. In some ways, I think that is a bigger scandal than the secret agenda tapes.

Like when Fonzie jumped the shark, Key blew National’s remaining credibility on this stunt. Like the secret tapes, the made story of stolen rubbish tells Kiwis one thing loud and clear: the Nats will say and do whatever they need to to get into power, you can’t trust them an inch.

78 comments on “Jumping the shark”

  1. Lew 1

    Steve, some people do actually believe Labour or their fellow travellers searched Key’s rubbish. You can (as I do) discount their belief on the grounds that they’re mostly the sort who Want To Believe, but that’s not the same as saying they don’t believe it.

    That rather undermines your premise – that because nobody believes X, X is manifestly false – and the conclusion drawn from it, that National lied. For the argument to be valid, you have to make a case for why we should discount the opinions of those who do genuinely believe it happened. Go on. I’m sure you can.


  2. Steve – just because YOU don’t believe that Key’s rubbish was searched (and not for the first time) doesn’t mean that others don’t believe it, or in fact, consider it perfectly probable. Your arrogance reaches breathtaking heights sometimes. And I presume you have proof that the photo’s were faked. No? Didn’t think so.

  3. BTW – did you read Duncan Garner’s blog yesterday? Yeah, THAT Duncan Garner – the one who ran the story of the “sting” you base your assumptions on:


  4. Anita 4

    When I’ve heard people who aren’t politically committed/interested talking about the rubbish story there’ve been two streams of response

    1) “This election campaign is (going to be) dirty :(.” No particular finger pointing, or at least equal blame of both Labour and National.

    2) “Oh don’t be silly, if I was going to look through Key’s rubbish I would [insert more competent approach here].” No discussion of this as a political tactic by National, more a “all politicians are stupid/impractical/don’t-get-it” concept.

    The political geeks analyse it for spin and tactics (of both major parties). To the rest of NZ it’s just noise which has reinforced an existing view – either that politicians are playing dirty or that they’re lacking commonsense.

    I should say that on two occasions I heard it turn quickly into a grizzle about the neighbourhood dogs – ignoring the politics and making it relevant to real life.

    To borrow that dreadful US phrase, I think we’re all living inside the beltway. So the question becomes, what kind of story would work outside in the real world? 🙂

  5. lprent 5

    IV2: I cannot say with absolute certainty it wasn’t dirty tricks. However I can make a bloody good set of assumptions that it isn’t.

    1. Every electorate office I’ve been in has a paper shredder and a secure bin. That is where any sensitive info goes. I’d have to make the presumption that anyone competent would also know that. So why did they break open the ordinary household rubbish.

    2. Electorate offices seldom have anything very sensitive (at a political level) in them anyway. Mostly it is boring details of immigration queries, moans against government departments, moans against the council, etc.

    3. As far as I can see there is a McDonalds wrapper in that trash. I’m unsure exactly where the nearest McDonalds is – but I’d expect at Upper Harbour Drive – what 20km’s away? Where exactly did that rubbish come from.

    At the very least I think that the Helensville electorate office is probably being somewhat ridiculous. It is quite likely that it was kids, dogs, etc. In fact I’d say that the only thing it wasn’t likely to be was drom the dirty tricks brigade. Frankly they’d have to be pretty damn stupid to think that they could get anything from it.

    But the timing leads me (like Steve) to think it was a classic diversion tactic for those great thinkers in the press.

  6. Anita 6

    I’ll add another

    4. If someone did want to go through an electorate office’s rubbish bag then they’d take the bag away. It makes absolutely no sense to go through a rubbish bag on site, even less to spread the rubbish all over the place.

    I find it hard to believe that, even with the current elements of tribal hatred, the Nats think Labour is that stupid 🙂

  7. So Lynn, you’d agree then that Steve is beating it up when he makes statements like “Still, no-one believed Key.”, “We all know, therefore, that Key and his staff deliberately faked those photos and lied to the New Zealand public.” and “Cyncially and with planning, Key lied to the New Zealand public and was caught out.”? It’s hyperbole, it’s the tactic of using absolutes (no-one, all), and what’s more, unless Steve can produce proof that “Key lied to the New Zealand public and was caught out”, it’s defamation. All of which makes Steve’s constant critcism of Crosby/Textor rather, um…hollow, wouldn’t you agree?

    By all means hypothesise, but unless Steve has the proof to back up his claims, he paints himself into a corner from which he might have great difficulty extracting himself!

    BTW Lynn – never “assume” – remember the old line? It makes an ASS out of U but not ME.

  8. lprent 8

    IV2: I’ve commented about this on just about every thread here today.

    Poll timing is crucial. The tapes of National shadow ministers were released on the evenings of the 4th, 5th, and 6th respectively.

    So far we have had the following polls, where the polls were done on the specified dates.

    Morgan : 28th July – 10th August.
    Neilsen (Fairfax) : 4th August – 10th August.

    With anything like this it usually takes a week or two for the unwilling, undecided, and swinging voters to actually register their thinking in polls. ie there is always a lag effect while people get around to thinking about it.

    Guess what – there is unlikely to be any significant effects showing until we see the polls that are done next week. So your assessments are very likely to be INcorrect. To be precise what we are getting at present from just about everyone who came in to talk about the polls today is a certain amount of written flatulence.

    I have bugger all respect for polls (as anyone who reads here is probably aware by now). But the one that I do tend to watch is Morgan because of the long-term trends coincide with what I hear in direction. I hasten to add that their amplitude jumps and absolute percentages are a bit suspect. I get the impression that they do some more care about the sampling and questions. By contrast, I tend to look at the Nielsen one for Fairfax as being there to fuel headlines.

    Now one effect that did come in the last set of Morgan poll was a 3% rise in NZ Firsts vote. If that holds up over the next couple of polls, then I’d say that I was right. Winstons basic precept that almost any publicity is good.

    Looks like the loud calls alleging corruption may have just helped them over the 5% threshold – and unfortunate, but predictable result.

    Damn: My old Mac-mini doesn’t seem to like logitech keyboard plugged via a usb kvm… Had to do more than usual editing on that comment.

  9. Draco TB 9

    Still, no-one believed Key. Think about that. We all know, therefore, that Key and his staff deliberately faked those photos and lied to the New Zealand public.

    This line of logic is false. Belief is not fact or evidence and so drawing a conclusion from it is meaningless.

    What we do know is that there should have been no chance of there being any sensitive documents in the rubbish anyway as any electoral office would need to dispose of such documents adequately. We know that anybody searching for sensitive data would know this and so is unlikely to look through the rubbish bags. Although such evidence is circumstantial it does tend to show that JK and National lied to the public. As this alleged lying happened just as National got in the media due to some very damaging tape recordings that showed that National had been deceiving the public for the last couple of years it shows that it was done as a distraction from the real issue. It also tends to lead even more credibility to the accusation that they lied about the rubbish bag being ransacked.

  10. If you got nothing to hide, why give a hoot about some jerk off searching thru the crap to find mud too sling at some poor unsespecting cretin?

    Search my rubbish and you’ll pull the pin. Booom.
    This shark is far too smart !

  11. lprent 11

    If it is defamation rather than fair comment, then the Nats responsible for their press statements is welcome to make fools of themselves in court.

    I’m quite willing to stand up and say that in my personal opinion that I think that whoever released and approved the Nats press statement about the rubbish was bullshitting when they asserted that they thought there may have been dirty tricks with people playing with their rubbish.

    Tell me why you think that anyone who was aware of the how electorate offices operate could have asserted that there rubbish being strewn around was evidence of dirty tricks?

    Why do you think that there was any evidence of anything more than local hooligans?

    Why in the hell were there McDonalds wrappers in the rubbish?

    Why should I treat the Nat’s story with anything apart from contempt. It has to be the most stupid story I think I’ve seen so far this election campaign.

    What does the dog have to do with it? (opops that was satire)..

  12. Yap,rip, goes the pit ball into the rubbish bag.

    Go the rowers and stuff the rubbish, dogs and sharks, burp, oops……..

  13. Anita 13


    I tend to agree some of SP’s post is hyperbole, but underneath all that there’s a serious point.

    I find it really hard to believe that Key actually believed that Labour spies had strewn his electorate office rubbish all over the lawn.

    Do you think he believed it?

  14. lprent 14

    Actually ignore my comment. Even if I fixed my grammatical errors, I still prefer Anita’s question.

    It is far more concise and covers all of my main points.

    And if it wasn’t JK, then whoever wrote and/or authorized the press release.

    captcha: both bagging
    That thing is either uncanny or it has a hidden agenda.. More coffee required. Bug-hunting makes me as paranoid as….. umm Hi Dad!

  15. Iprent; I don’t have a hidden agenda, but, I have been bugged, just ask my friends who don’t ring me anymore. SIS bug variety, oh the waste of tax payer dollars.

  16. rave 16

    Can’t quite believe you guys are getting bogged down in Key’s rubbish and Helen’s healthy habits. Hanging on every poll is pretty infantile too.
    What about some real heartening news? TV3 has a item on Scoop on how McGegan Place has proven Key wrong. It is not a ‘dead end street’ after all (was Key referring to the suicides in the street?) but a very much alive St thanks to the kids who don’t take shit from Key and the parents who are rallying with their kids.
    Why doesnt the Standard do some grass roots polling in the Labour heartlands (Mt Albert not Tekapo) and think positive instead of gumshoeing every tiny move Key makes? It makes you look pathetic and an object of derision by the righties. What about a review of the production being put on by kids from the ‘Street’ currently on in Auckland?

  17. Macro 17

    You know what? The nearest McD’s to J K’s electorate office is Henderson! about 20 mins away – if your lucky! Now why would the staff be eating McD’s when there are heaps of take aways within 5 mins walk?

    Of course they MAY be addicted?

  18. Anita 18


    And if it wasn?t JK, then whoever wrote and/or authorized the press release.

    I actually checked that before posting 🙂 The media attribute the accusations to Key. See, for example, here, here, and here.

    To defend my obsessiveness I will only say this is being written between rowing finals 🙂

  19. lprent 19

    rave: It has been a slow news day. Looking at the number of visits on the site, I get the distinct impression that people are watching the olympics or otherwise blobbing out rather than then blogging.

    I wouldn’t describe the Standards job as polling. But…

    Putting on a different hat, that is what I’m doing right now. Setting up the canvassing targeting for our door knock and phone teams for next week in Mt Albert.

    The working life for an activist is NEVER finished.

    BTW: could you give me the link? I’ll see if we’ve been in that area yet.

  20. vto 20

    SP made the assertion so he should back it up. Or is it just like the ‘secwet agenda’ in that it does not exist. proof please or you will be bored to tears with a battery of mindless continuation a-la SP’s assertions.

  21. r0b 21

    SP made the assertion so he should back it up. Or is it just like the ‘secwet agenda’ in that it does not exist.

    Ahh vto, today over lunch I got to welcome 4 more swinging voters back to the fold. They’re returning to Labour because of the secret agenda that you claim doesn’t exist.

  22. Yeah right r0b – like hell that “4 more swinging voters” will bridge the gap in the polls.

    Sharks are feeding on a sick Labour carcass.

  23. r0b 23

    Sharks are feeding on a sick Labour carcass.

    The Great Shark Hunt? Say, now I have a new theory about d4j’s secret identity…

  24. And the latest polls say the public dont give a crap about this photo, they say national is going to govern alone.

    Ps: Does Karl Rove now work for the labour party of New Zealand????

    You guys have all the markings of his work.

  25. Kevyn 25

    Iprent, Does the nearest McDonald’s have a drive through? Are electorate office staff in the habit of throwing rubbish out of the car window?

    Your failure to think through your own argument undermines everything that flows from that argument. Worse, points 1 & 2 were good arguments and point 3 diverts attention onto a nonsense.

    I like Anita’s point 4. I presume the bag was left outside.

  26. r0b 26

    Ps: Does Karl Rove now work for the labour party of New Zealand???? You guys have all the markings of his work.

    Hah, that’s rich, given that Australasia’s answer to Rove, namely Crosby Textor, works for the National Party. Which, incidentally, has all the markings of their work.

    Eventually of course Rove overstepped himself and became a liability. I think the same thing is happening to Crosby Textor. Pardon me if I don’t shed any tears.

  27. Savage 27

    What is the point of this thread? I have read through it and have learned nothing new. You can’t say that someone from Labour hasn’t been through Key’s rubbish because you really don’t know.

    I have my suspicions that it was Gerry Brownlee checking he didn’t accidentally throw away that last Toffeepop.

    Can we please try and leave the emotive, brainwashing politics to the neocons?

  28. kg 28

    What’s with all the fuss about how far the nearest MacD’s is from the office? Have you never bought a burger on the way to work?
    And dumped the wrapper in the bin at work?
    Or picked up rubbish littering the space outside which has been blown there or dropped–and put that litter into your own rubbish bag?
    And to jump from “nobody believed Key” to “we know therefore that Key and his staff deliberately faked those photos” is just absurd.
    A lack of belief is not and cannot ever be proof of anything.

  29. Tim Ellis 29

    Given that at the last election, people were seen rifling through John Key’s rubbish, it isn’t inconceivable that he would leap to the conclusion that when rubbish is strewn across his office lawn, that it had happened again.

    The McDonald’s issue has been debunked here. When you buy takeaways, you tend to take it away. You don’t eat takeaways on the spot and deposit the rubbish within close proximity to where you’ve purchased it. I tend to eat mine in the car as I’m driving. I won’t put them in the bin until the next stop. Sometimes that can be a couple of hundred kilometres away if I’m driving long-distance. I don’t stop specifically to dump the rubbish. I often won’t do it until I next stop for petrol, because the rubbish bin there is right next to the pump.

    As for why the would-be burglar didn’t take the rubbish bag away, we’re assuming it was a rubbish bag. It may well have been a wheelie bin. Much harder to take away with you, in that case.

    If it was a wheelie bin, which I expect it was, unless there’s evidence to the contrary, I personally think it is likely that a couple of kids thought it would be amusing to knock it over. I don’t make the leap from there to thinking that John Key knowingly faked the photos and lied to the New Zealand public about it. That really is jumping the shark SP, and again you’re undermining your credibility by stooping to such petty sensationalism.

    We’re going into an election. There will be some pranksters and vandals who go about destroying election hoardings. It is likely that some of that vandalism will be politically motivated; most of it probably won’t be. The candidates whose signs are targeted will probably believe that they are more politically, rather than randomly, motivated. That will no doubt be an honest belief.

    Put it this way, LP: If you had been burgled before, and you came home to your house to see a broken window, would your first assumption be: “I’ve been burgled again”? or would it be: “Oh, that’s probably some object, perhaps a bird, that has accidentally flown into my window.”

  30. Anita 30

    Tim Ellis,

    Given that at the last election, people were seen rifling through John Key’s rubbish, it isn’t inconceivable that he would leap to the conclusion that when rubbish is strewn across his office lawn, that it had happened again.

    Seen by whom? Told to the media by whom and under what circumstances?

    I think you might find no more substance than this time around.

  31. Rocket Boy 31

    This is the ‘jumping the shark’ moment?

    Sorry Steve, but National have increased their lead in the latest round of polls, so you really are running on wishful thinking here rather than reality.

    Time you boys (and girls?) ran a piece on congratulating our olympians on their latest medal success and if you want to mix a bit of politics into it, look at how some of them are funded and how they might do better with a bit more (government?) funding.

  32. Bill 32

    The bin angle is well, rubbish as you say. A distraction that may have had some effect or may not.

    ie, not worth talking about or giving legs to.

    Yet it’s posted here and elicits 30+ comments.

    What a strange irony.

  33. Key has had his rubbish searched by Labour for years now.

    You wouldn’t believe that a Party who would bug its opposition wouldn’t go through its rubbish bins as well?

    It defies belief and all logic.

    Polls out this weekend reflect the fact that most kiwis have been put off by Labour’s secret taping and they are voting accordingly.

  34. burt 34

    Any chance of an election date being set some time soon? Waiting for the polls to improve, gee that’s a good way to run the country isn’t it!

  35. lprent 35

    Darren: You bring a new meaning to the words “wishful thinker” aka Fool.

    1. Why would anyone bother to search rubbish? Secure docs are disposed of securely. Can you substantiate the claims that Key has it searched? Links please. Otherwise I’ll have to consider that you are a valueless windbag.

    2. The taper says that they aren’t labour. The reporter says they aren’t labour. The party says they have no idea who it is. That leaves conspiracy theorists like yourself. Tell me – who should we believe?

    Polls out this weekend reflect the fact that most kiwis have been put off by Labour’s secret taping and they are voting accordingly.

    Read Steves post about the timing of these polls or my comments this weekend. The current polls will show little of no effect from last week’s news. Maybe then you’ll be able to join in discussion with something more than your rather lurid fantasies. At present you’re just wasting bandwidth.

    It defies belief and all logic.

    Exactly. I cannot believe that anyone could have such a pathetic grasp on logic as you displayed in your comment.

  36. burt 36


    I’d like to read a post from Steve about the polls, the actual polls.

    Steve P. was quick to preempt the bad news but seems a little slow to post the details. Perhaps the pretty pie charts look a little light on red for his liking, an aesthetic objection to the outcome perhaps?

    [lprent: Read You must….

    It is the weekend and it looks like most people have other things to do this weekend (I know I have). Tane is usually the only person that does stuff on polls (I think they are pretty useless as indicators for elections). But I haven’t seen Tane around here this weekend. ]

  37. rave 37

    McGehan Close Kids prove that it not a “dead end”

    [lprent: Thanks. ]

  38. burt 38


    Look at the difference John Key has made. You have got to agree he motivated them, something denying there is an underclass would never have achieved.

    Look at the difference that the community has made, that wasn’t welfare that lifted them up.

  39. coge 39

    Iprent – “The taper says they aren’t labour” Well that may or may not be. Considering they actively misrepresented themselves to intrude on the Nats conference, I would be very wary of anything they would claim. Hell, we don’t even know their identity, so how can this statement of not being “labour” be possibly verified in any case?

    Like it or not, Labour did seek to benefit from the secret
    recordings. Unfortunately they spent much energy trying to defend themselves, as we saw on this blog the last fortnight. This rigorous defence just drew attention to the possibility that they may have had some involvement.

  40. It’s not rocket science to see it was YET ANOTHER dirty trick from the endless handbag of Heather’s. She knows no better. Move along, get that dirty laundry girls.

    At least Fonzie didn’t hide behind the scenes.
    Shark bite – good about bloody time !!

  41. Phil 41

    Anita asked, waay back up the thread “does John Key really think Labour are THAT stupid?”

    I’ll answer on his behalf; Yes

    Both major parties (and the minor ones too) have more that their fair share of people like d4j and randal, so I’d say it’s entirely possible.

    Never underestimate the stupidity of those with too much time on their hands.

  42. Oh great, bloody hell, blame me again phil and take another pill you drop kick.

    Don’t EVER put me in the same sentence as randal !!

  43. sweetd 43

    Just hurry up and call the election, lets put this labour party out of its pain and torment.

  44. The sooner the election – the sooner we can repair the damage.

  45. burt 45

    What sweetd said.

    edit: and what D4J said @ 2:02

  46. the sprout 46

    well… that seems to have struck a nerve with the RWNJs.

  47. r0b 47

    well that seems to have struck a nerve with the RWNJs.

    They certainly are out in force today! In a bit of a hurry to call an election too. Heh. No hurry thanks Helen.

  48. Rex Widerstrom 48

    Incredible. This thread will be archived for time immemorial, thus providing an answer when our grandchildren ask “So, what were the important issues facing the nation in your day, grandpa?” (or grandma. Or the officially approved non-sexist non-ageist terminology of the times 😀 )

  49. Felix 49


    “Now why would the staff be eating McD’s when there are heaps of take aways within 5 mins walk?”

    Because they like minimum wage employers who send profits overseas?

  50. “No hurry thanks Helen.”

    Yes r0b, politics in New Zealand is a bit like a bad soap opera.

  51. r0b 51

    Yes r0b, politics in New Zealand is a bit like a bad soap opera.

    NZ is nothing special in this respect Dad. I think lots of countries would claim to have the worst or daftest politicians in the world.

    My suspicion is that it isn’t that the wrong people become politicians, but rather that the whole confrontational nature of the party based democratic process (and the profit driven media) inevitably brings out the worst.

    Does it have to be this way? As a society, could we organise our collective decision making process better?

  52. Anita 52


    I asked whether Inventory2 believes that John Key actually believed that Labour spies had strewn his electorate office rubbish all over the lawn.

    Do you?

    Does anyone here genuinely believe that?

  53. sweetd 53

    Is there a Doctor in the house? Need someone to call time of death on the Labour Party.

  54. Adolf Fiinkensein 54

    Colmar Brunton, those paragons of political virtue, just sunk all you scabby coalition partners, chaps.

    [lprent: I see that you are your usual unintelligent self. I could remove you from the moderation – but based on your comment you may as well just stay there. I’d just have to ban you again eventually. This will save me adding you back into moderation later.]

  55. lprent 55

    Rex: It is amusing. It is a weekend when most people appear to be watching the Olympics or busy.

    I’m just in my usual irritated self that I get into whilst programming webapps. Then I see a really daft comment – well the results speak for themselves.

  56. Draco TB 56

    # sweetd
    August 17, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    Just hurry up and call the election, lets put this labour party out of its pain and torment.
    # 44 dad4justice
    August 17, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    The sooner the election – the sooner we can repair the damage.

    We’re still repairing the damage from the last time National and, before them, Labour were in government. Not a good idea to go around changing the government when that process is in progress – especially to the a National led government that would quickly redo all the damage. Of course, there’s only a slight chance that National will form the next government so we may not have a change in direction and we can continue repairing said damage.

  57. rave 57

    Wow, fancy that, all we need to do to get rid of the underclass is send in some rich benefactors in flash cars and with million dollar baches and the kids will all want to become millionaires and Prime Minister.

    I think the attitude of those kids was more like screw you, Key we are not a dead end, but more than that we don’t value your solution to the underclass if it means trampling over lots of people. We are a working class community and we value that.

    The underclass doesnt exist. Its a label attached to the poor to blame them for failing. What we have is a low wage country the result of economic and social policies of the last 25 years. If we had decent jobs and living wages you would see the numbers on benefits virtually disappear.

    But the righties won’t acknowledge that because they only see individuals. So they mentor those who want to be little Keys and leave the rest to rot or slam them in jail.

    If you want to look at NZ under a Key administration just look to the US under Bush. There youll see lots of homeless poor people going through rubbish back looking for half eaten McDonalds.

  58. lprent 58


    Considering they actively misrepresented themselves to intrude on the Nats conference

    Actually it’d be interesting to find out if they misrepresented themselves. My understanding was that it was a fund raiser cocktail evening. You pay your money (~$100 odd) and you get in.

    Was it in fact part of the conference? Or just an associated event?

    I suspect that there was a presentably person who simply paid cash. It’d usually be easy enough to get into most Labour events like that if you knew they were on. That latter bit is the hard bit – which is why I still suspect someone inside or recently inside the Nats.

    The difference would usually be that Labour MP’s usually don’t express opinions that indicate a quite such a division about policy in quite as much detail.

  59. coge 59

    Iprent, you’re right. Facts are still missing. Maybe it’s in the interests of both major parties to smoke this guy out, just to clear things up. Meanwhile, the media has moved on.

  60. burt 60


    I think the attitude of those kids was more like screw you,

    Absolutely. What made them say ‘screw you’ is exactly what Labour wouldn’t do. Confront the issue and bring it to the attention of NZ.

    You also missed the bit about the difference being community spirit and not more welfare. It’s amazing what people can do when they say ‘we need to work together’ rather than just we need more welfare. It’s a sense of community that is the first victim of generous welfare.

  61. Anita said “Phil,

    I asked whether Inventory2 believes that John Key actually believed that Labour spies had strewn his electorate office rubbish all over the lawn.

    Do you?

    Does anyone here genuinely believe that?”

    Sorry for the late reply Anita, but last night was a late one for this old fella! Here’s what the Herald said on 7 August:

    “National last night also released photos of rubbish at leader John Key’s Helensville electorate office it says was interfered with on Tuesday night – food was left behind but the bag it was in and papers were taken away.”

    It’s not implausible. In fact I would go as far to say that it is more believeable than:

    “Remember the photos of McDonald’s wrappers strewn on a grass verge that John Key expected us to believe was evidence people had been rifling through his electorate office’s rubbish? Was there ever a more transparent attempt to deflect attention from a bad story with an obviously faked picture? No-one believed that Key’s rubbish really had been searched; it was a desperate attempt to shift the story from the content of the secret agenda tapes to the ‘dirty tricks’ meme.. and to a degree it succeeded in that objective, the media happily spent more time speculating on who made th recordings than what they said about the governing intentions of National.

    Still, no-one believed Key. Think about that. We all know, therefore, that Key and his staff deliberately faked those photos and lied to the New Zealand public. Cyncially and with planning, Key lied to the New Zealand public and was caught out. In some ways, I think that is a bigger scandal than the secret agenda tapes.”

    And in the absence of Steve or anyone else being able to provide evidence that Key’s staff “deliberately faked those photos and lied to the New Zealand public”, I think Steve’s attempt at a dog-whistle is self-evident. And judging by the Colmar-Brunton result tonight, frankly Steve’s claim that “Still, no-one believed Key.” is complete and utter bullshit. Had Steve said Still, no-one who writes posts for The Standard believed Key.” he might have had validity. But he didn’t, so he hasn’t!

    There – took a while, but you got my answer in the end!!

  62. Anita 62


    Apologies for the repetition, slow brain tonight 🙂

    Are you saying both that

    1) You believe that John Key genuinely believes that the rubbish was strewn around by Labour party people searching through it.

    2) You personally believe that the rubbish was strewn around by Labour Party people searching through it?

    Or just one of those two?

  63. I’m saying that neither situation is implausible. Just as peaople from one political party going to a function hosted by a rival party, posing as members of the the rival party and making illicit recordings is not implausible.

    But that’s not the issue. The issue is that Steve has made bold claims that “no-one believes Key” and that Key “deliberately lied to the people of New Zealand” which he cannot substantiate. Which makes his claims bullshit; and what’s worse, he knows they’re bullshit, but he repeats them anyway.

  64. Anita 64


    Ok, so both scenarios have at least a façade of plausibility no disagreement here. SP overstated his argument no disagreement here.


    Which scenario do you believe?

    Do you believe Key was being honest when he made the accusation?

    I, personally, do not believe that Key believed it. While it might be “not implausible” it’s thoroughly unlikely, and I don’t believe Key is stupid.

  65. You’re quite right Anita – Key isn’t stupid. So I don’t believe that he would concoct a story which could so easily be debunked.

    And it would seem that at this point, the public agrees. And good on you for agreeing that Steve has overplayed his hand here.

  66. Anita 66


    Ok, so you don’t believe he arranged for the rubbish to be thrown around and the photo to be taken. As it happens I’m not convinced either.

    Do you believe he believes it was thrown around by Labour Party spies?

    (I don’t)

  67. Hopefully the many Labour spies go undercover in a tank fill of great white sharks!

  68. rave 68

    I didnt miss the bit about more welfare. I said, more or less, that the reason that welfare was necessary was the economic policies that gutted the country cut wages and destroyed lives. Calling the effect of this a ‘dead end’ rather than the cause, more market reforms, is inviting more of the ‘dead end’ cause. That’s why its the ‘overclass’ that’s the problem not the ‘underclass’.
    ‘Community spirit’ can’t survive in the sphere of the spirit, but in the sphere of real jobs and living wages.

  69. Savage 69

    If you were going to be looking through someones rubbish wouldn’t you just pick it up and rummage through it somewhere private?

    Why put rubbish all over the place especially after what happened with the tapes?

    Seems very convenient.

  70. deemac 70

    D4J has been banished from most other blogs but is still wasting space here – why?

  71. Felix 71

    Do you really want him out roaming the streets?

  72. lprent 72

    deemac: Apart from the interesting comment from Felix.

    I’ve previously VERY thoroughly banned d4j. This involved considerable effort because of the number of his ISP’s and tenacity. Eventually I relented after talking to him via e-mail (it was a lot of effort to completely exclude him) on the general basis that he would be reasonably ‘good’ with respect to my rules about starting and maintaining flamewars. I have the role of curbing those.

    ‘Good’ is a relative and loose term specifically related to flamewars. I don’t get too upset if he reacts to excessive provocation but generally I’d handle those anyway with my usual subtle approach.

    I had to convince my very skeptical fellow moderators to allow me to let him on again…. That was the hard bit.

    On the whole this has worked adequately apart from when off-site spats carried over here (and yes I am thinking of illuminatedtiger here). IMHO here he isn’t tame, but he is tolerable – which is acceptable.

    After a comment from Felix (I think) and encouragement from others, d4j appears to be developing rather interesting and unique style here. That of a surrealistic commentator with troll attributes but with non-repetitive comments.

    Anyway, the nett effect is that he doesn’t fit my definition of a flame starter, a boring troll (I certainly cannot code his comments with a phrase book), a attacker and trasher of the site, or a mindless graffiti artist.

    I’m afraid I’ve even started to keep an eye out for the unusual associations he draws between topics 🙂

  73. Jasper 73

    I have a confession to make..

    dad4justice… makes me…

    laugh. hahaha.

    with thanks to the sound of music.

    My rubbish was strewn all over my lawn last week. Can I blame National activists for it seeing as I defected from them?

    Nationals policies ensure New Zealanders have to live on Rice Risotto, Pasta and Mince like we did in the 90’s again.

    Billboard idea:

    Blue Background

    In the pantry:

    Rice Risotto
    Tinned tomatos
    Tomato Sauce

    Red Background:

    In the pantry:

    Fresh Bread
    Olive Oil
    Bran Flakes
    Durum Wheat

    Tagline: Labour: Keeping you healthy.

  74. vto 74

    All been quiet on here last few days… what’s happenned? Court of public opinion stated its verdict on the non-existent ‘secret agenda’ too loudly? Realisation that time virutally up for labour? No box of magic tricks for Cullen to pull a rabbit from at the last minute?

    What on earth is labour’s plan to wrest the election from the nats? Lordy help them if it is a Key attack that is the hope…

    The poker game is past the mid-point. chop chop labour.

    [vto, if you want posts to read on the weekend, set up your own blog. I’ve been at an anniversary, I understand Tane’s had a family thing on, Irish is off somewhere, don’t know about the others but guess they had better things do do with thier time. Anyway, I wrote you a post on the polls last night and I see it’s up now. SP]

  75. vto 75

    [it’s touche. SP}

  76. r0b 76

    Don’t get too excited by your enormous poll vto!

    The secret agenda is doing very nicely thank you, according to both parties internal polling (and our own local canvassing experience):

    In a result that may surprise both major parties, whose internal polling had indicated loose lips caught on tape at National’s annual conference in Wellington this month had hurt the Opposition, National has slightly increased its lead over Labour to 19 points

    The commercial polls aren’t yet picking it up fully for reasons described in other threads, but I’m content that the orchestrated litany of truth will be one of the factors leading to a continued narrowing of the polls as the election approaches. Labour’s support remains close to what it was in the last 3 elections…

  77. ben 77

    No-one believed that Key’s rubbish really had been searched

    I did.

    Like when Fonzie jumped the shark, Key blew National’s remaining credibility on this stunt.

    That makes no sense whatsoever. Fonzie jumps the shark refers to a tv show that ran out of ideas. That analogy is more apt for any political party lining up for their fourth term, not its incoming opponents.

    Like the secret tapes, the made story of stolen rubbish tells Kiwis one thing loud and clear: the Nats will say and do whatever they need to to get into power, you can’t trust them an inch.

    And this from a defender of the party that gave New Zealand the EFA.

  78. lprent 78

    ben: Why did you believe a story like that? That would be more interesting to read. An exercise of understanding the credulous.

    If you ever bother to notice (doesn’t seem likely from your rather stupid comment), there isn’t a lot of defence of the NZLP around here (apart from myself and a some of the commentators). Almost all of the major posters have criticised the NZLP at some stage over various policies and attitudes.

    There is far more criticism of the right’s policies however. At this election, that means a major focus on national – because they’ve swallowed all of the otehr right votes.

    But what do you expect from a leftish, greenish, unionist, ‘labour movement’ and generally youngish set of writers. Not everyone is as credulous as yourself.

    BTW: You can perilously close to repeating Whales bullshit about that site. I’d suggest reading the About and Policy if you wish to comment here.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 hour ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    3 hours ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    4 hours ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    5 hours ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    8 hours ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    9 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    10 hours ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    10 hours ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    10 hours ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    14 hours ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    15 hours ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    1 day ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 day ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 day ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 day ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    2 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    2 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    2 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    3 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    3 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    3 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    4 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    4 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    5 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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 ...
    5 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 ...
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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 ...
    7 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
    7 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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

  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day 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
    2 days 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
    2 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days 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
    2 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    3 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
    4 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
    5 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
    5 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
    6 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
    6 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
    6 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago