web analytics

NZ Herald: Be journalists, check before ‘reporting’

Written By: - Date published: 9:50 am, June 27th, 2014 - 62 comments
Categories: labour, Media, national - Tags: , ,

There is a self-serving anonymously authored editorial in the NZ Herald this morning “Editorial: Cries of bias will not stop reporting“.

Well for a start the problem isn’t with the Herald reporting. The problem is that it’s reporting on this story appears to have been performed by amateur journalists in their investigations team  and facilitated by incompetent editors who didn’t check the story. This probably including whoever wrote this pathetic editorial. It appears to have been an abrupt change from their usual competent style of journalism. Of course the question has to be asked about what caused this change?

The anonymous editorial author points back to previous stories in previous elections that the Herald has done to prove that they aren’t biased.

However, these were done competently with considerable checking. This is what showed in their reporting at the time on such things as the Exclusive Brethren and even the recent Judith Collins and Maurice Williamson stories. You could argue over the NZ Herald reporters interpretations. However it was rather difficult to argue over their well checked facts.

That still showed in the uncovering of a 11 year form letter. Admittedly to get that appeared to require considerable help from the National party with its friendly policy of telling the Herald reporters what to ask for in an OIA after their initial failure. Then helpfully putting pressure on public servants to release in a unprecedented two days.

That the Herald reporters were too incompetent to find out what the electorate offices routinely do with immigration cases is perhaps excusable. After all a long time political reporter like John Armstrong appeared to also think that forgetting a 11 year old routine enquiry to the immigration department was abnormal enough to call for a resignation. So maybe they simply lacked astute guidance. Of course that there are hundreds and possibly thousands of ex-electorate office employees around that they could have asked, and clearly didn’t.

That may be merely poor journalism.

However it appears that this week, even that low level of competence and accuracy in the reporting at the NZ Herald is not required.

The Herald on Sunday at the weekend article “reported” from a still unreleased signed statement from Donghua Liu that appears to have been sourced  not from its author, but from some unnamed third source – probably the National party or associated sources.

Astonishly on Monday the editor of the Herald on Sunday Tim Murphy on Morning Report appeared to not understand the value of a signed statements.  For his benefit, let us reiterate. An affidavit is a sworn statement and stating something in it that is not truthful is equivalent to perjury and treated as such. A signed statement are legally about as worthless as used toilet paper, and this is what Donhua’s signed statement now appears to be.

It is now quite clear that the contents of that statement were never checked by the Herald before “reporting” on Sunday. Not with its author, nor with any sources inside Labour, nor apparently with anyone apart from its source.

That first statement appears to be completely false. To date the none of the substance of that statement about donations to Labour has been proved and many have been repudiated in a slightly less murky follow up statement on Wednesday by Donghua Liu. None the less, every day this week they have ‘reported’ stories from material in that first statement, including after the second statement was released with different details.

To date the only evidence of donations to the Labour party by Donghua Liu consist of nothing that can be verified.

Partially that was due to the required reporting in the pre-december 2007 reporting. But mostly because it appears that most were actually purchases at auctions and because they appear to have been done in small amounts (ie a few thousand dollars) over a period of time – probably many years.

The only real way to track them is for Donghua Liu or the Herald to provide details as to locations and dates. Needless to say the Herald has been continuing to “report” “donations”  to Labour all this week when they have no evidence that these ever occurred. For some reason this level of repeated systematic journalistic incompetence in reporting untruths does lead to questions of bias.

So far we have

  • A confirmed donation to the Hawkes Bay rowing club which has nothing to do with Labour.
  • There are no dates apart from one that appears to coincide with the Hawkes Bay Charity Wine Auction on the 3rd June 2007, which has nothing to do with Labour.
  • Of course there is the now infamous $5o-60k trip down the Yangtze river, which appears to have been a company outing that a Labour MP got dragged to, and had nothing to do with Labour.
  • We have a allegation about a purchase at auction of a book for $15k in the first statement by Donghua Liu and which does not appear to be in the second, however there are no dates or locations.

Meanwhile the statement by Donghua Liu that he gave other parties appears to have never been followed up by the NZ Herald.  Again leading to questions of bias.

It would probably help if the NZ Herald released the documents to some competent journalists/editors or even to the crowd sourced checking of the blogs. Clearly the reporters on the investigations team and their supporting editors are not capable of verifying these allegations.

But to date they haven’t released photo image copies of either of the two statements from Donghua Liu that would allow some more competent journalists than Jared Savage and his team to determine the truth. From what I have heard, even the Herald’s parliamentary press gallery haven’t seen them.

So I have to ask the question of the NZ Herald. Given such an abrupt change in the standards of checking that usually characterises your “news”  stories, what caused the change? Somehow I don’t expect that we will ever get an answer to that.

Just as I suspect that we will never see a copy of the first statement. It has all of the characteristics of being a smoking gun pointing back into National or one of their associated mouthpieces like Whaleoil or Kiwiblog. Probably from the name of a witness perhaps?

 

62 comments on “NZ Herald: Be journalists, check before ‘reporting’ ”

  1. greywarbler 1

    Wasn’t it written or sanctioned by potatohead then? If not, why not?

    The female editor in the UK has just got off scot-free. Or seems to have. Nothing can be done apparently to hold onto British integrity and standards. They slip away like sand between the fingers. Why should The Hairy aim to keep to old-fashioned ideas already abandoned ‘overseas’ our university of learning and best practice?

    Aren’t we being like the Savage in Brave New World – whipping ourselves, flagellating ourselves and our society over failing to comply with outmoded morals and ethics. Let’s abandon ourselves to the new, go with the flow, inhale some soma and Enjoy!

  2. ianmac 2

    Your post is a great summation of the situation. It is a pity that there is no venue/organisation to whom your post could be addressed.
    Maybe I could send your entire post to Jared Savage. I have his email address. What do you say?

  3. karol 3

    Dear gods. This editorial is getting a hammering in the comments under it. I’ve read through a fair number and all but an occasional one come out against the editorial.

    Although, I do think the NZH releases comments in for and against clusters. They may be saving up the “fors” to have the last word.

    However, they have clearly angered a sizable number of people.

    • weka 3.1

      They’re getting a thrashing alright.

      My favourite so far,

      “The NZ Herald became a tabloid-style scandal blog so gradually I was almost fooled into believing that the basic tenets of integrity, honesty, balance and fairness (and, of course, fact checking) in journalism was just some kind of nostalgic myth I must have dreamed up.”

      Mike Rickson – 09:06 AM Friday, 27 Jun 2014

  4. Will@Welly 4

    With the exception of the ODT, we can now see the damage being wrecked upon New Zealand by the loss of control of the media organisations. There really is no accountability. Even the ‘Press Council’ is like a wet blanket.
    There was a time when editors prided themselves on their standard of journalism, and were prepared to fight the owners ‘tooth and nail’ to maintain that credibility.

  5. Te Reo Putake 5

    The golden rule is always get two sources. Don’t print any allegation without independent verification of its accuracy. The problem is that the Herald were prepared to rely on a single source and they should have known that the source was untrustworthy. It’s simply shabby, gossip column journalism. Back in the days when they had subs, their job was more than just spell checking. A reporter failing to get alternative confirmation would be told to go away and come back with something of substance to anchor the story.

    Now all we’ve got is political advertising masquerading as news on the front page of our ‘journal of record’.

    • Pete 5.1

      I think everyone at the Herald should sit down and re-watch All The President’s Men and take particular note of how much of a hard-ass Ben Bradlee was when it came to pushing his reporters to verify sources and confirm allegations

    • One Anonymous Bloke 5.2

      The Herald had not just two but three sources: Liu, Key and Slater, all of whom are independent from the Labour Party.

      What could possibly go wrong?

  6. One Anonymous Bloke 6

    I can’t see why the crowd in the cloud would want to lift a finger to help a bunch of Tories behind a paywall. They even have gated communities online 🙂

  7. dimebag russell 7

    its not just the herald. the whole country has sunk into an abyss of infantilism and kowtowing to the masters.
    the whole newsgathering industry has been infected from top to bottom with nepotism and inanity..
    as another poster said this week new zealand appears to be democratic on the surface but underneath its rotten. ditto for the press. the standard of personnel recruitment and their efforts has slipped so badly and then overlaid with a gloss of pure bullshit that most people dont even notice.
    the horse bolted long ago.

    • greywarbler 7.1

      @ dimebag russell
      Get out the spade and see if that horse left any deposits. The dung is good for roses I think, and we need to have something positive to brighten our lives. It’s very depressing listening and looking at our news.. We have to keep bringing our news deposits to the Standard where they can be turned over and checked to see if they are worthwhile.

  8. Clemgeopin 8

    The unfair and biased behaviour of the Herald, Key, the RWN job blogers is a disgrace and a disservice to democracy. Unfortunately, I suspect that the public who are so ill served by our present media will not realise the deliberate slant and harm being dished out against Labour, and the blatant favouritism shown towards Key and National.

    IF the MSM, TV, commentators etc do NOT give us equal amount of positive coverage as they do for Key and National, then Labour and the progressive parties will have an uphill task during this election period. The media is supposed to be an unbiased, fair and accurate ‘fourth pillar’ of democracy! At the moment it is most certainly not when it seems to go deliberately harming Cunliffe and Labour without verifying facts with integrity and without being diligent and just in their reporting of ‘news’.

    Any one reading commentary or watching the media news coverage in a critical objective way can discern this distortion that is happening.

    I am hoping that the public will soon begin to see all this and dish out their own unforgettable backlash against National’s dirty tricks machine.

    • karol 8.1

      It’s up to the people, and the left wing blogs then, to hold the MSM and their powerful backers to account.

    • greywarbler 8.2

      Did anyone listen to Morning Report this a.m.? All about the terrible Labour poll, was mentioned a lot. Plus Mr Key given a nice slot and a mention of NACT conference and a plug for NACT – Labour given Mike Williams.

      • Tracey 8.2.1

        a poll taken in the middle of the heralds (turns out) illusory labour and cunliffe scandal… And the editor thinks they do no harm.

        I havent seen the rabid right in here congratulating labour for gaining 4% on the last poll they all trumpetted as gospel.

  9. ianmac 9

    Might seem a bit odd but a Herald columnist has written a scathing rundown on recent events. Toby Manhire rightly decries the misinformation spread by the media and looks forward to policy debates.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11282589

    • karol 9.1

      Thanks. Pretty good, except for one or two sentences in the middle of the article – kind of tends to lean to false equivalence.

      • Tracey 9.1.1

        Does Herald competitor, sunday star times not want to rip into the poor journalism practised by the Herald cos they have some kind onf unwritten rule in the media about that kind of thing?

  10. Bob 10

    The only thing I can take from that editorial is the fact that they are admitting to being shit reporters no matter what side of the house they are reporting on! The exclusive brethren was a story, the Owen Glenn saga may have beena story but they never found a smoking gun, but the Tea-pot Tapes and Donghua Liu stories were just that, stories and they refuse to back away from either of them.

    Last year John Campbell on Campbell Live blatantly stated that he doesn’t see any point of reporting both sides of a story if he feels strongly enough about a topic (such as Legal Highs), then as soon as he got his way on that campaign, he spent the next week telling the other side of the story and making it sound like the Government had made the wrong choice banning them!
    This pathetic attitude seems to be endemic amongst NZ media and something has to be done to bring these useless fuckers (apologies for the language but this gets me wound up) under control!

    Well done to Zetetic for their post on Wednesday, this type of mass action needs to be taken to make the media stand up and take note, although I fear our piss-weak Press Council will more than likely state that this editorial is enough to cover ‘balance’ to their prior bullshit reporting.

  11. Lez Howard 11

    I read the Herald this morning and gagged, it was not the Jimmy Saville item either

  12. Blue 12

    The Herald is pathetic. They went into this ‘investigation’ with the intention to pin something on Labour and they persevered despite all the warning signs that they were headed for trouble. There is no other way to explain their shoddy reporting and lack of oversight by editors other than institutional bias against the Labour Party.

    • they took Mr Liu’s statement as gospel truth despite no independent evidence corroborating it, Mr Liu’s lack of credibility as a reliable witness and his obvious political motivation in writing and signing it just after Maurice Williamson’s resignation.
    • they did not even question the ridiculous claim that Mr Liu paid $100,000 for a single bottle of wine.
    • they made a mountain out of a molehill over a form letter signed by David Cunliffe 11 years ago which does not support or advocate for Mr Liu’s application for residency, nor does it ‘give a hurry up’ despite what the Herald has claimed.
    • the editor of the Herald does not even understand the legal differences between a signed statement and an affidavit.
    • donating to a political party in NZ is neither illegal nor immoral, and the Herald failed to provide any reason why they were attacking Labour in the first place. They did not ‘join the dots’ and prove there was any failure to abide by the law surrounding donations or any special treatment given to Mr Liu by Labour in exchange for the alleged donations.
    • they appear to have placed no importance on the Labour Party’s repeated denials that Mr Liu had donated money or that they had any significant links with him. They presumed Labour to be liars and Mr Liu to be telling the truth.

    In short, there was never anything to the story, and the only motivation in publishing it had to be making Labour look bad in an election year.

    • Bob 12.1

      Blue, are you surprised? Look back at the Teapot tape last year (you can listen to it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvEOh2KOTqg), there is absolutely nothing wrong with anything said in the tape (unless you take John Key saying “NZ First support is dying off” literally rather than the election result context in which it was put), yet the NZ Herald and Duncan Garner ran with the story using innuendo to damage National support. They don’t care if there is an actual story, they only care if they can spin what they have to sell papers.

  13. freedom 13

    had to post this

    right now the NZH front page has 153 comments listed
    but on the editorial in question only 127 are shown …???

    • weka 13.1

      some will be in moderation.

    • veutoviper 13.2

      It happens all the time, freedom. Also, an opinion piece will be listed as having comments, but when you go to the article to read the comments, there are none and it still shows as just “Add a comment”. It can then take hours for the comments to appear in some cases, while in other cases, the comments come up straight away.

      I have been watching this for months, and can find no logic to it. Armstong and O’Sullivan’s articles are often the worst at comments not being shown for a long time – sometimes days, particularly at weekends. Also on some occasions, after the comments finally appear, the number of likes don’t appear for a long time either, sometimes hours. Yet, this doesn’t happen to other opinion pieces. Very innconsistent.

      A couple of years ago, I remember reading a comment by Deborah Coddington on Pundit (in reply to another woman poster there who she was having an argument with in the comments of a post) that suggested something to the effect that writers of opinion pieces in the Herald received commission on the number of times their articles were opened. This suggested that the holding back of releasing comments meant that they got more hits as people checked to see whether comments were there or not. I don’t know if this is true, but there is some logic in that approach (from the point of view of the writer) if it is.

  14. Tracey 14

    Lynn

    That the herald think it is being accused of bias as opposed to being accused of not investigating its stories and sources, not showing its info to the accused party prior to comment etc speaks volumes.

    • Anne 14.1

      One Herald commenter has said:

      David Cunliffe should “demand a written apology and published retraction”
      He should lodge a formal complaint to the NZ Press Council if this is not provided.

      Couldn’t agree more! It would be one complaint the Press Council would have to take very seriously otherwise their own reputation will be jeopardy…

      • Tracey 14.1.1

        the Labour Party president should make the complaint and seek compensation for the time wasted looking for documents(donations) which dont exist.

        Cunliffe should stay out of it saying things like

        “i am sorry the public has been let down by this poor piece of journalism. Labour is sorry for the distraction but more galvanised to bring issues that matter to the attention of nzers, with or without the herald.”

        • Kiwiri 14.1.1.1

          Yes, the Party President or someone on her or David’s behalf, or an assigned solicitor/spokesperson.

          A circuit breaker is needed to free up David from the Herald-Woodhouse-Key rubbish, and to allow David to campaign positively and advocate for Labour’s policies.

          • Anne 14.1.1.1.1

            Yes, that is a better idea. Leaves Cunliffe and co. to concentrate on policy announcements etc.

            I. for one, would be more than happy to donate to a Labour initiated fund so they could hire lawyers to fight the case for them without dipping into campaign funds. If the Herald comment section is any indication, I think there would be a substantial amount of money flowing in from non-members and even non Labour voters who nevertheless want to see a fair election campaign on a relatively even playing field.

  15. JohnB 15

    My Comment on NZH:

    As a long time reader of the NZ Herald, I’ve been able to accept the slow slide into grammar diarrhoea, the automatic postings of the AP stories online (with US spellings), and the generally ‘right wing vibe’ of the commentators (it’s a point of view). But when that crosses over into poor and biased reporting (whether for ‘conspiratorial’ motives, or because like Key you stick your finger into the wind to check how public opinion is blowing), then you lose all basis for your reputation as a national paper of record. This might have been forgettable 100 years ago in 1914 when there were few other newspapers (and yes, a reference to the Herald’s flip-flopping on the ‘German question’), but today there are many other news sources from which I can be informed. As a ‘consumer of news’, I no longer want to buy what you’re selling – it’s poor quality rubbish. Democracy demands balanced debate, and you don’t provide it. By that definition you’re no longer a newspaper, but a propaganda piece, whether in the service of profit or ideology. It’s time to bring some balance, moral fibre and sagacity into your news room, otherwise readers will leave in droves. Who knows, it may yield results

  16. ropata 16

    winners from this saga
    – herald sales of manufactured ‘news’
    – whaleoil’s claim to being a real journalist
    – national’s scandals (Oravida, Liu, Banks) are out of the news cycle

    losers
    – nz public
    – real jorunalism

    • lprent 16.1

      Exactly. Plus NZ Herald’s credibility as a news source. I think everyone is going to look pretty hard at whatever they produce over the next few years. I know I will be looking a lot harder at their stories, and I wasn’t a fan of them in the first place.

      • ropata 16.1.1

        I would expect journalists to have a reasonable IQ and critical thinking skills but it seems that the bar for publication has been lowered to tabloid standards.. i.e. any old gossip floating around

        Agree that whatever credibility NZH may have had is now in tatters. If they have any ethics or integrity they need to demonstrate a bit of independence from the old boys network, start doing their job, and question the media narratives from the rich and powerful.

        It’s journalism 101 people. Otherwise what the hell is the use of the so-called “fourth estate”?

  17. finbar 17

    A good piece by Frank Macskaskey in The Daily Blog is a good companion piece to the above post.

    • Kiwiri 17.1

      Thanks for pointing out Frank’s piece. I will re-read but quickly just at this point …

      “However, my [i.e. Frank’s] advice to Cunliffe and the Labour Party is to defer legal action until after 20 September. The Labour Party cannot afford distractions this close to an election.”

      On this side of the election, any preliminary steps towards legal action should be positioned or headed up in a way that frees up Cunliffe for positive, affirmative, good news campaigning by him. There should be a small team of people that can be referenced for comment (or to whom further queries can be put) if and when any stupid questions or statements from jonolists, or their idiotic friends, come up during the campaign.

    • ianmac 17.2

      And Frank had a short sharp comment under the Herald Editorial as did Phillip Ure, and others.

  18. The Herald’s agenda has become increasingly obvious. They are engaged in a cunning, devious, and finely crafted political conspiracy. Knowing how much trouble they’d be in if they were caught failing to do anything more than support National with full blown enthusiasm, they have thought long and hard about how they can give support and credibility to the opposition without alerting Slater, Ede, Farrar, and Joyce to their intentions. By engaging in the tackiest, flimsiest, and most transparently baseless attack campaign they could possibly imagine, the editorial staff at the Herald have found an ingenious way to motivate habitual non-voters to enrol and ditch this government, and to convince even the weariest and most moderate of left wingers that they must turn out for the election and vote for change.

    This is the only possible explanation for the smug, unapologetic, biased, and craven lines of attack that they are running against the New Zealand Labour Party. Nobody who possesses a legally sound frame of mind could believe that today’s editorial had any other purpose than that which I have outlined above, or that the Herald’s poorly researched and flimsily justified assertions could have been made with the intention that they be taken seriously. Tim Murphy and Shayne Currie are in fact moral and intellectual giants in tory gnomes’ clothing who have cunningly infiltrated the heart of the enemy camp. I just hope that by posting this, I don’t blow their cover, as I understand that they’ve recently redone the floor in the basement of the Northern Club. Digging it all back up again just to bury the pair of them alive for their treachery would be a terrible expense for that fine institution to face right now, what with the Atlas-like burden of Labour’s tax changes looming in the near future.

    Take courage, brave agents of change – on September the 21st, we will be thanking Tim Murphy and Shayne Currie for supplying the left with a much-needed turning point. I for one will send flowers – or leave them on the doorstep out front of the Northern Club.

  19. Jack 19

    Labour require a media crisis team to handle issues like the Dong Liu Affair, National walked Labour into this one and sat back laughing and watching them squirm when there was no substance to the allegations, this is what happens when you have a media source which is plaible and easily manipulated.

  20. NZ Femme 20

    Herald editor has just tweeted the following:

    “Donghua Liu – seems like some premature claims of the story ‘unravelling’ have been going on….”

    https://twitter.com/tmurphyNZH/status/482413071403462656

    *sigh – Getting ready for the next fizzing pile of poo.

  21. Jack 21

    No doubt more will be revealed over the weekend about the missing $150k in donations, hope Labour have found it or did someone just pocket the cash?

    • karol 21.1

      It was never about $150k. That figure included a boat ride for Liu’s staff, and some non-Labour stuff.

      left with some small change in multiple anonymous donations.

    • NZ Femme 21.2

      Have you sleepwalked through the last couple of days Jack? I understand they have sleep clinics for that kind of thing.

      Google is your friend – it allows you to check for egg on your face before entering the public arena. Today’s retraction in the herald would be a good place to start:

      “We regret having reported inflated and conflated dollar figures.”
      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11282539

      • Jack 21.2.1

        I was just being sarcastic in relation to the NZ Herald’s coverage of this whole affair, I think Dong Liu has been played like a fiddle by someone or some particular organisations???

        He is now a political football.

  22. Jilly Bee 22

    John Campbell started his half hour with a few pertinent questions mainly aimed at the Herald editorial. He then detailed the several visits he has made to Donghua Liu’s property [close to Mt Hobson, I would think], it ended with Mr Liu departing rapidly in his people mover. Made my day it did!

  23. Jrobin 23

    If it wasn’t premature and unravelling, then why did the editorial express regret over the exaggerated amount of donations claimed as fact. Tim Murphy has such faith in Woodhouse, Slater, Key, because they have been powerful. He feels safe behind their skirts. That could change rapidly if the public suddenly feel safe to express negativity towards Key. The polls have kept this in check, but they are in question too. Note the Nats are ignoring the polls so as to avoid “complacency” (RNZ this morning). Is this because they know something we don’t about the methodology used?
    There may be a pent up anger towards Key relating to asset sales, power prices, GCSB, inequality, child poverty, low wages, Pike River, Christchurch payouts, that is supressed because of the desire to fit in with the idea of the most popular PM ever. When people fall out of love with him and that illusion is dispelled it could get quite ugly, quite fast. Keep your horse saddled John, for a rapid getaway back to America.

  24. Sable 24

    Given the generally dismal public perception of journalists in this country, they rate alongside sex workers (I’m not sure why the latter rate so low in pubic perception, many are victims of circumstance but there you go) and sleazy politicians. I do not think self serving articles by the Herald or any one of the other MSM outlets has that much value in he public eye.

    I have noticed that even the bigger on line polls on sites like Stuff and Yahoo attract at most 5000 hits its safe to assume the actual viewership of these sites constitutes a small portion of the country’s overall population. And yet Labour and its supporters endlessly carp on about them. Did it occur to anyone this actually lends credence to their claims false or otherwise?

    The best thing Labour could do is publicly renounce them for the disingenuous creeps they are, point out the facts and then ignore them (Winston Peters is a master in kicking them to the curb, Cunliffe should take note). Refocus on issues that matter and make a effort to actually get their message out rather than chasing their tails (this is playing Nationals game).

    Where Labour in particular has failed is in getting its message out to constituents in my opinion is in the following areas:

    (1) Asset sales
    (2) TPPA (why is Labour less than emphatic in rejecting this?)
    (3) Spy laws (again why so silent?)
    (4) Lack of support for environmental issues (why did they vote down the Greens move to clean up NZ rivers)
    (5) Taxes-why do the most highly paid get a free ride in this country whilst the middle and working classes carry the tax burden
    (6) Immigration-we need to ensure those coming into NZ actually add value. There is also a need to ask why we are not retraining our own people.

    No post drops spelling out the problems and the solutions, on going newsletters, Youtube (only a rather uninspired web site Polity and a modest presence on sites like Twitter). I have no idea if they are using Facebook but they should be.

    Its not that people support National its more that they see no real alternative in Labour and this is Labour’s real Achilles heel.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Gordon Campbell on juggling Covid, and France’s Trump-like populist
    It is the age-old Covid problem. How to balance the needs for firms (and schools) to re-open against the need to protect public health. In the past, the balance has been struck by insisting that the best public health outcomes also deliver the best economic (and educational) outcomes. While that ...
    28 mins ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 20 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Joe Atkinson, Political Scientist, University of Auckland: “NZPD is an indispensable source for political junkies like me. It sorts the wheat out from the media chaff and saves a lot of time.” Anyone can sign up to NZPD for free at: https://democracyproject.nz/nz-politics-daily/ Today’s content Housing Zane Small (Newshub): How ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    2 hours ago
  • The Picnic Period: A sign of our Covid times
    Auckland. For a long been it’s been known to Maori as Tamaki Makaurau, a place of ‘many lovers’. In the past fortnight, though, Auckland has shaken out the rug and grabbed a drink to become Tamaki Pikiniki, a place of many picnics. The humble picnic is now, in many ways, a ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    24 hours ago
  • Are Covid vaccines becoming less effective?
    A critical debate about Covid-19 vaccines is when does protection wane, by how much, why, and what does this mean for controlling the pandemic and the impacts of infections. Depending on the studies or headlines you read it can be confusing. Some report declining vaccine effectiveness, and others don’t. Some ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 day ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 19 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Oliver Hartwich, Executive Director, The New Zealand Initiative “There is a dearth of quality journalism in New Zealand, and so I am grateful to NZ Politics Daily for sifting through our media to discover the gems of reporting and opinion editorials. It is a valuable contribution to ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 day ago
  • The Entrust election
    Auckland is holding elections for EnTrust, its local electricity trust. Entrust is important - it owns electricity and gas-supplier Vector, and so the decisions it makes around energy infrastructure could make a significant difference to greenhouse gas emissions. But the elections have traditionally been ignored, so its run by CitRats ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Argentina returns the favour
    In the early 2000s, Argentinian victims of the Dirty War, denied justice due to a local amnesty, sought justice in Spanish courts, who obligingly convicted agents of that country's dictatorship of crimes against humanity under Spain's "universal jurisdiction" law. But Argentina wasn't the only country with a repressive dictatorship which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: A good move, but not enough
    The government has announced that it will quadruple climate aid to developing nations, from $300 million to $1.3 billion over four years. This is good: "climate finance" - aid to developing nations to decarbonise and offset the damage caused by rich-country emissions - is going to be a flashpoint at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Too Much Say, Not Enough Do.
    When The Green Party Co-Leader Speaks, Does He Make Any Sound? James Shaw must know that neither New Zealanders, nor the rest of humanity, will ever take the urgent and transformative action that Science now deems necessary to stave-off climate catastrophe.POOR JAMES SHAW: He’s the man this government sends out ...
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the perils of declaring premature victory
    Sure enough, Saturday’s Vaxathon was a barrel of fun and a throwback not merely to the Telethons of the past. It also revived memories of those distant days of early 2020, when we were all carefully wiping down our groceries, not touching our faces, washing our hands for 20 seconds ...
    2 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 18 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Kim Gillespie, Editor NZME Newspapers Lower North Island & Communities “I find the daily email great for giving me an overview of each morning’s big issues across the media landscape, and really appreciate the huge amount of work that must go in to compiling it each day.” Anyone ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    2 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Political Roundup – Celebrating and critiquing 25 years of MMP
    Over the last week, MMP has been in the spotlight, given that it’s now been 25 years since the first general election was held under this proportional representation system. This has produced some important commentary and storytelling about the introduction of MMP and about the various pros and cons of ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 in Aotearoa: what does public health do now?
    Dr Belinda Loring, Dr Ruth Cunningham, Dr Polly Atatoa Carr* Public health activities have collectively made an incredible contribution to minimising the impact of COVID-19 in Aotearoa. But the work for public health is not over. As the situation in Auckland heralds a transition point in our approach to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 days ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #42
    Listing of articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, October 10, 2021 through Sat, October 16, 2021 The following articles sparked above average interest during the week: ‘This is a story that needs to be told’: BBC film tackles Climategate scandal, Why trust science?, ...
    3 days ago
  • Is injection technique contributing to the risk of post vaccine myocarditis?
    Recent misleading media headlines about vaccines being administered incorrectly in the absence of evidence do little to help public confidence in vaccines. Spoiler alert, vaccines are not being administered incorrectly. The topic of this blog is based on what could be an important scientific question – is one of the ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    3 days ago
  • A Māori health expert reports from the Super Saturday frontlines
    Rawiri Jansen, National Hauora Coalition I write this as I charge my car, getting ready to head home at the end of a pretty good Super Saturday. It started with coffee and checking the news feeds as any good day should. Between 9 and 10 am as I drove to ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • Weddings and Leopards
    Could it be that the Herald is beginning to twig that an unremitting hostility to the government does not go down well with all its readers? The evidence for that is that, in today’s issue, two contributors (Bill Ralston and Steven Joyce) who usually enjoy sticking the knife in, take ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    3 days ago
  • The Chronicles of Kregsmal and Krunch: Volume I
    As noted previously, my weekly DND campaign with Annalax and Gertrude has been put on ice. I expect it to return eventually, but for now it is very much on hiatus. The remainder of the group have decided to run an entirely new campaign in the meantime. This ...
    4 days ago
  • Super Saturday recap: Patrick Gower doesn’t know what he’s supposed to do
    It was Aotearoa’s first national day of action in over ten years, the first since 2010, when Prime Minister John Key tried to inspire us to clean up our nation’s berms. It didn’t work. Today, New Zealand’s berms are worse than ever. But history is not destiny, and other cliches. ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19 Worried about getting your vaccine or want a simple explanation?
    Worried about getting your vaccine? Let me tell you a secret. No-one likes getting a vaccine. People do it because they know they’re better off to. Let me tell you another secret, a weird one: the vaccine doesn’t really “do” anything. Confusing? Let me explain… Vaccines are a face at ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    4 days ago
  • Delta puts workers’ power under the spotlight
    by Don Franks Foremost fighting the Delta virus are workers, especially in health, distribution, service and education sectors. Unionised members of these groups are centrally represented by the New Zealand Council of trade unions ( NZCTU). Political journalist Richard Harman recently noted:“Businesses are caught in a legal tangle if they ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Faster transitions to clean energy are also cheaper
    This is a re-post from the Citizens' Climate Lobby blog Several clean energy technologies like solar panels have become consistently cheaper year after year as the industries have benefited from learning, experience and economies of scale. Falling solar costs are described by “Swanson’s Law,” much like Moore’s Law described the rapid and consistent ...
    5 days ago
  • Abstraction and Reality in Economics
    Sometimes high theory loses the human point of the exercise.One of the joys of teaching is you learn from your students. When fifty-odd years ago, I was at the University of Sussex, a student doing our first-year economics course, Jim, came to me, saying he was pulling out because it ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    5 days ago
  • What Happened to the Team?
    Last year, in the early stages of the pandemic, the Prime Minister’s “team of five million” performed well; team discipline was maintained and we all worked well together. This year, however, has been a different story; team discipline has weakened, and many people have on numerous occasions behaved badly and ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Another legal victory
    Across the world climate change activists have been going to court, seeking to make their governments act to protect future generations. And hot on the heels of victories in the Netherlands and Germany, there's been another one in France: A French court has ordered the government to make up ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Invasion Of The (Covid) Body Snatchers.
    It's Here! They're Here! We're Here! Help! It’s as if we’re all living through a Covid version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. What has become of Jacinda? Where have they taken her closest Cabinet colleagues? The people on the stage of the Beehive Theatrette look the same, but they ...
    5 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 15 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Associate Professor Grant Duncan, Massey University, Auckland “The NZ Politics Daily email is very helpful in giving me a quick overview of current events and opinion. It allows me to pick out important or informative columns that I may otherwise have missed. I recommend NZ Politics Daily to anyone ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Missing From The Anti-Covid Action.
    The Invisible Man: Where has the NZ Council of Trade Unions been during the Covid-19 Pandemic? Why hasn’t its current president, Richard Wagstaff (above) become a household name during the pandemic? Up there with Ashley Bloomfield, Michael Baker, Shaun Hendy and Siouxsie Wiles? WHERE HAVE THE UNIONS BEEN during the Covid-19 ...
    5 days ago
  • “Go West, Young Virus”
    The Auckland Coronavirus Outbreak potters along, not helped by the perception that the Government is disturbingly enthusiastic about “managing the virus” or loosening the border. Health Minister Andrew Little said today he envisages 90% vaccination rates (which we don’t have) eventually leading to 5,000 cases in Auckland a week… ...
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #41, 2021
    How to fill a glass and thereby drink— from a fire hose So far this year, New Research has published listings for 3,291 papers concerning climate change from one aspect or another. Each edition includes two dozen or so articles describing freshly and directly observed effects of global waming. These ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: UKanians supports cuts
    The Guardian reports a study on emissions reduction policy from the UK, which found that UKanians overwhelmingly support stronger action than their government: The UK public backs a carbon tax on polluting industries, higher levies on flying and grants for heat pumps in order to tackle the climate crisis, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Media Link: “A View from Afar” on PRC-Taiwan tensions.
    In this week’s podcast Selwyn Manning and I discuss the upsurge in tensions between the PRC and Taiwan and what are the backgrounds to and implications of them. You can check the conversation out here. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Labour’s 2023 election manifesto
    This morning Health Minister Andrew Little effectively unveiled Labour's 2023 election manifesto: 5,000 cases a week in Auckland alone: Thousands of people will be infected with Covid-19 every week even with vaccination levels at 90 per cent, and hospitals face being overwhelmed once restrictions are eased and borders opened, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Don't Blame James.
    Emissions Impossible! So, don’t be too hard on poor James Shaw. His pathetic little To-Do list is, indeed, totally inadequate to the crisis. But, you know what? He’ll be lucky to get half of the items ticked-off. There’s just too many entrenched interests – not the least of whom are ...
    6 days ago
  • The “Pulpit of Strewth”
    Barry Soper is one half of one of one of those right-wing husband-and-wife duos in which the Herald seems to specialise. In today’s issue, he has a piece that doesn’t quite reach the heights (or depths) of a Hoskings-style anti-government hostility, but which does provide an interesting example of the ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the epic fails of Kris Faafoi
    Ever since Winston Peters first breathed life into this government in 2018, its own branding has been all about social justice and how we all need to be “kind” to each other. Somehow, Kris Faafoi must have missed the memo. His performance in the immigration portfolio (in particular) has neither ...
    6 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 14 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Mike Treen, Advocate, Unite Union “Please continue your incredible work compiling these news digests. As someone operating in the fields of advocacy for workers and the broader social justice areas it is invaluable to be able to check what is happening in the media relating to the issues I have to deal ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • Overconfident Idiots: Why Incompetence Breeds Certainty
    This is a re-post from the Thinking is Power website maintained by Melanie Trecek-King where she regularly writes about many aspects of critical thinking in an effort to provide accessible and engaging critical thinking information to the general public. Please see this overview to find links to other reposts from Thinking is Power. ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Abandoning ambition
    When Labour was first elected to power in 2017, they promised us "[an] ambitious plan to take real action on climate change". Four years and a lot of foot-dragging later, they've finally released that plan. And its not what was promised. Where to begin? Firstly, they've taken the Climate Change ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Many e-cigarette vaping liquids contain toxic chemicals: new Australian research
    Alexander Larcombe, Telethon Kids Institute   From October 1, it’s been illegal to buy e-liquids containing nicotine without a prescription from a doctor everywhere in Australia, except South Australia. But vaping with nicotine-free e-liquids is not illegal in Australia (though in some jurisdictions the e-cigarette devices themselves are illegal). Vaping ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • Young adults worldwide have blunt message for governments: ‘We don’t trust you.’
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Karin Kirk Elizabeth Marks describes herself as “a psychologist who works on difficult problems.” Her past research aimed at helping people cope with challenging health conditions, apt training, it appears, for taking on climate change issues. A few years ago, she altered ...
    1 week ago
  • Making ‘Second Age’ Hobbits Work: Amazon Series Speculation
    Time for a good old-fashioned fandom furore. The Tolkien fandom hasn’t had a proper one of those since the Great Nudity Scandal of October 2020… so it clearly must be time to pontificate from on-high about a television series we still know vanishingly little about. This time the subject ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 13 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Lara Greaves, Political scientist, University of Auckland: “I love the NZ Politics Daily emails as they help me to keep on top of current events. It’s incredibly easy to skim through and follow the links. I really appreciate these as it means that I am exposed to a ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • The Data and Statistics Bill and the OIA
    The government introduced a new Data and Statistics Bill today to modernise and replace the 45-year old Statistics Act. Part of the Bill re-enacts the existing confidentiality regime (with one exception), which while a secrecy clause isn't an especially controversial one. Another part is aimed at removing "outdated" (inconvenient) limits ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Graham Adams: The debate over the $55 million media fund erupts again
    RNZ’s Mediawatch and a video clip viewed 42,000 times keep the topic of the Public Interest Journalism Fund fizzing. Graham Adams reports.   A week ago, the NZ Taxpayers’ Union posted a short video clip of the exchange in Parliament between Jacinda Ardern and Judith Collins in which the National ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Multiple sclerosis: the link with earlier infection just got stronger – new study
    Scott Montgomery, UCL For most of the time since the first description of multiple sclerosis (MS) in 1868, the causes of this disabling disease have remained uncertain. Genes have been identified as important, which is why having other family members with MS is associated with a greater risk of developing ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Hit hard by the pandemic, researchers expect its impacts to linger for years
    Sora Park, University of Canberra; Jennie Scarvell, University of Canberra, and Linda Botterill, University of Canberra   The impacts of COVID-19 on Australian university researchers are likely to have consequences for research productivity and quality for many years to come. According to an online survey of academics at the University ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Covid and free speech
    by Don Franks Some commentators have likened the struggle against Covid 19 to the world war experience. To those of us not alive in those times, that comparison can only be academic. What the anti virus battle reminds me of much more is an industrial strike. In my twenties and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • “Angry Blowhards”
    In today’s Herald, their excellent columnist, Simon Wilson, takes to task those “shouty” people whom he further describes as “angry blowhards”. They are those whose prime reaction to the pandemic is anger – an anger they seamlessly (and perhaps unwittingly) transfer from the virus to the government. The basis for ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Looking Forward To 2022.
    Future Tense? Okay, so that’s where we are in 2022. Living in a New Zealand where all the usual rules of politics once again apply. And, guess what? Jacinda’s government, once again, isn’t doing very well – not very well at all.LET’S PLAY A GAME. Let’s pretend we’re half-way through ...
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Covid mandates, and the Covid pill
    The cliché about “living with Covid” will not mean life as we’ve known it, Jim. Vaccination is fast becoming a condition of employment, and also a requirement to participate in aspects of social life, such as travel, attending bars, cafes, and concerts etc. These protective measures enjoy a high level ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 12 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Prof Alan Bollard, Professor of Practice at the School of Government, Victoria University of Wellington; Chair of the Infrastructure Commission: “NZ Politics Daily” provides a great public service – a quick and unbiased way to check policy announcements and analysis every morning.” Anyone can sign up to NZPD ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Legal Beagle: A submission on the COVID-19 Public Health Response Amendment Bill (No 2)
    I have made a submission on the COVID-19 Public Health Response Amendment Bill (No 2).In preparing it, I looked at the Hansard for the first reading debate, and got name-dropped as someone likely to make a submission. So, of course I did. I focus on a small bit of the ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: More tales from the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme
    You may have read last week that two years after the publication of regulations for medicinal cannabis – and three years after the enabling legislation – two local products from a local manufacturer have finally met the minimum quality standards for prescription. You may also be interested to know that ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Real action requires government
    Over the weekend someone pointed me at a journal article on "The Poverty of Theory: Public Problems, Instrument Choice, and the Climate Emergency". Its a US law journal article, so is a) very long; and b) half footnotes (different disciplines have different norms), but the core idea is that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Not doing our bit
    Last month the US and EU announced they would push an agreement to cut methane emissions by 30% (from 2020 levels) by 2030 at the upcoming climate change conference in Glasgow. The good news is that New Zealand is looking at joining it. The bad news is that that won't ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Delta’s Week Of Doom.
    Classic Shot: Are the Prime Minister’s formidable communication skills equal to the task of getting her government’s anti-Covid campaign back on track?IF JACINDA ARDERN thought last week was bad, the week ahead promises to be even worse. Sixty community cases of Covid-19, one of the highest daily totals so far ...
    1 week ago
  • Urgent measures needed to allow the safe re-opening of Auckland schools
    Dr Rachel Webb, Dr Jin Russell, Dr Pip Anderson, Dr Emma Best, Dr Alison Leversha and Dr Subha Rajanaidu* In this blog we describe the range of urgent measures that are needed to facilitate a safe return to schools in Auckland and other regions of the country where there is ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Children live online more than ever – we need better definitions of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ scree...
    Kathryn MacCallum, University of Canterbury and Cheryl Brown, University of Canterbury   The pandemic has fundamentally altered every part of our lives, not least the time we spend on digital devices. For young people in particular, the blurred line between recreational and educational screen time presents new challenges we are ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Putting Aotearoa on the map: New Zealand has changed its name before, why not again?
    Claire Breen, University of Waikato; Alexander Gillespie, University of Waikato; Robert Joseph, University of Waikato, and Valmaine Toki, University of Waikato   Our names are a critical part of our identity. They are a personal and social anchor tying us to our families, our culture, our history and place in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Yes, of course festival organisers will follow the law on vaccination
    On Tuesday 5 October the New Zealand Government announced that proof of COVID-19 vaccination would be a requirement to attend large events this summer.It took a few days for event owners to absorb the information and understand the implications. By the end of the working week, most of the big ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 11 October 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Jim Hubbard, Cartoonist “NZ Politics daily is a go to for cartoonists, or should be.  Political reporting enmasse like this gives cartoonists and political junkies a smorgasbord to get their teeth into. Essential and I daresay vital reading for those who care about the future of NZ.” Anyone can sign ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #41
    Listing of articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, October 3, 2021 through Sat, October 9, 2021 The following articles sparked above average interest during the week: VFX Artist Reveals how Many Solar Panels are Needed to Power the ENTIRE World, Will you fall ...
    1 week ago
  • The Night of Parmenides: accepted
    A bit of good news on the writing front. My 3900-word short story, The Night of Parmenides, has been accepted by SpecFicNZ for their upcoming Aftermath anthology, to be published in early 2022. This is my first published short story to be explicitly set in my home-town of ...
    1 week ago
  • The Virus, the Politician, and the gang member
    . . . . . References Newshub Nation: Gang leader Harry Tam denies Winston Peters’ claims he helped infected woman breach COVID boundary, sparking Northland lockdown Te Ao News: ‘Apologise!’ Mob leader slams Peters’ Covid, Northland allegations Stuff media: Covid-19 – Search for contact of Northland case ‘extraordinarily frustrating’ CNBC: ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Rapid kits, responses, and openings: watch motivations, or catch something worse with Covid…
    Last week was probably a high point for many armchair “experts”, fresh from their high after some deep inhaling of the various musings and fumings, of an actually very smug, and very insualted John “Things all work for me…” Key, former Prime Minister and FOREX trader, had blitzed the ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Bollocks
    It would appear we have an unwelcome presence in town.Positive wastewater results had been detected in Hamilton and Palmerston North on October 6 and 7. There are 26 cases in hospital, seven of these are in ICU or high dependency units (HDU).One of the people in hospital is in Palmerston ...
    2 weeks ago
  • World-leading?
    So, the Herald has found someone, as we can see from today’s issue, who is able to explain why we should not claim to have been “world-leading” in our response to the covid epidemic. It seems that we have been kidding ourselves when we celebrated our low total number of ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Is Labour So Frightened Of “Mr Stick”?
    Force Multiplier: Why are Ardern and her ministers so loathe to put a bit of stick about? The “emergency” legislation eventually enacted to authorise the measures needed to combat the Covid-19 pandemic failed to confer upon the New Zealand Government the unequivocal authority that subsequent events showed to be so ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The Need for an Updated Strategic Approach to Covid-19 Control in Aotearoa NZ
    Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Jennifer Summers, Prof Michael Baker* The NZ Government appears to have drifted into an unclear strategic approach to Covid-19 control. In this blog we outline one potential way forward: a regional strategic approach that considers “regional suppression” and “regional elimination”. To maximise the success of this ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Mairon: The Actual Source for the Blasted Name
    Long-time Tolkien geeks – or those bemused enough to run across a certain internet phenomenon – might know that ‘Sauron’ is not actually the real name of the Lord of the Ring. ‘Sauron’ is just an abusive Elvish nickname, meaning ‘the Abhorred.’ Sauron’s actual name, at least originally, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Forced Re-entry
    The elimination of Covid strategy is not so much defeated but changing circumstances means that policy has to evolve. Our elimination stance was never sustainable or at least it would not be until the rest of the world also eliminated Covid-19. Elimination of the virus was a strategy we adopted ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • Repeal this unjust law
    Yesterday the Supreme Court ruled on National's unjust "three strikes" law, and found that the sentence it required was (in the case in question) so disproportionate as to "shock the conscience" and violate the Bill of Rights Act ban on disproportionately severe treatment or punishment: The Supreme Court has ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Preparing for the flood
    The Christchurch City Council has published new "coastal hazards" data, indicating which places are under threat from sea-level rise. And its not good news: Parts of Christchurch and Banks Peninsula are likely to become unhabitable [sic] as the city council figures out how to adapt to sea level ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Virus, Not The Government
    I wonder if Mike Hosking ever reads the paper in which he appears so regularly? If he does, he might have noticed a report in today’s Herald about the problem that could face churches in Auckland if a vaccine passport becomes mandatory for those wishing to attend church services. The ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago

  • Red tape cut to boost housing supply
    New building intensification rules will mean up to three homes of up to three storeys can be built on most sites without the need for a resource consent New rules will result in at least 48,200 and as many as 105,500 new homes built in next 5-8 years Bringing forward ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Nationwide business partnership grows conservation jobs
    Further Government support for New Zealand’s longest-standing sustainable business organisation will open up opportunities for dozens of workers impacted by COVID-19 to jump start a nature-based career, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. Partnering to Plant Aotearoa, led by the Sustainable Business Network (SBN), is a collaboration with iwi, hapū and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand increases climate aid contribution
    Government commits $1.3 billion over four years to support countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change At least 50 percent of funding will go to the Pacific as it adapts to the impacts of climate change The increase means New Zealand now meets its fair share of global ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Super Māori turnout for Super Saturday
    Māori have put a superb effort into mobilising to get vaccinated over Super Saturday, with thousands rolling up their sleeves to protect themselves, their whānau and communities from COVID-19, Associate Health Minister Peeni Henare says. “It was absolutely outstanding that 21,702 Māori got vaccinated on this one day alone with 10,825 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Language assists Tagata Niue to thrive
    Despite the uncertain times we face with the challenges of COVID-19, our cultural knowledge, values and language remain constant, helping us progress towards goals in life, said  the Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio. This year, the Niuean community in New Zealand decided on the theme, “Kia tupuolaola e ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand Ambassador to France announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Caroline Bilkey as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to France and the OECD. “Aotearoa New Zealand and France have a shared history, and enjoy a strong, collaborative partnership. This includes a strong trade and economic relationship, a shared commitment to support ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt welcomes nurses’ pay settlement
    The Government is welcoming news that a new employment agreement for nurses working in public hospitals has been settled. “I am very pleased that the hard work of the Nurses Organisation and District Health Boards has led to a settlement that both can support,” Health Minister Andrew Little said today. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Judge of the High Court appointed
    Māori Land Court Judge Layne Harvey has been appointed a Judge of the High Court, Attorney‑General David Parker announced today. Justice Harvey graduated with an LLB from the University of Auckland in 1992 and commenced employment as a law clerk with Simpson Grierson in Auckland that same year. In 1997 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on plan to reduce waste
    New Zealanders are invited to have their say on proposals for a new waste strategy and options for new waste legislation. “Reducing waste is one of the issues all New Zealanders – especially younger Kiwis - care deeply about,” Environment Minister David Parker said today “New Zealand is one of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Next steps in action plan for indigenous rights kicks off
    Minister for Māori Development Willie Jackson has today meet with more than 30 national Māori organisations in an online hui, kicking off the process to develop a plan for New Zealand to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (the Declaration). The previous National Government signed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Iwi-led housing solutions build homes for the future
    Whai Kāinga, Whai Oranga will open on 20 October, to receive applications for investment through Te Tūāpapa Kura Kāinga – Ministry of Housing and Urban Development and Te Puni Kōkiri The $730m fund combines investment from Budget 2021 ($380m) and the Māori Infrastructure Fund ($350m) - the largest investment seen ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • E whakarite ana Te Kāwanatanga i ngā tūāpapa mō twhakamaumahara ki Te Petihana Reo Māori ka t...
    I te rā nei, i pānuihia e te Minita mō Manatū Taonga, ko Carmel Sepuloni, rāua ko te Minita Whanaketanga Māori, ko Willie Jackson, ā tērā tau, ka whakanuia rawatia te 50 o ngā tau mai i te whakatakotoranga o te petihana mō te Reo Māori me te huanga mai ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • E whakarite ana Te Kāwanatanga i ngā tūāpapa mō tewhakamaumahara ki Te Petihana Reo Māori ka t...
    I te rā nei, i pānuihia e te Minita mō Manatū Taonga, ko Carmel Sepuloni, rāua ko te Minita Whanaketanga Māori, ko Willie Jackson, ā tērā tau, ka whakanuia rawatia te 50 o ngā tau mai i te whakatakotoranga o te petihana mō te Reo Māori me te huanga mai ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government green lights rapid antigen testing
    Some of the country’s largest businesses have put in an order for 300,000 approved rapid antigen tests for their workforce, after working at pace with the Government on a new scheme unveiled by Associate Minister of Health and Research, Science and Innovation Ayesha Verrall. A coalition of around 25 businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government lays foundations as Māori Language Petition commemorations take shape for 2022
    Taiaha hā! Taiaha hā! - Te kairangi o te reo hoki mai ki taku tikanga, ki taku taumata, ki taku reo, ki taku ao. He reo whai tikanga, he reo whai mana, he reo whai tangata koe. Ki te whāngaihia te reo Māori he ao tēnā, ki te kore he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major contract awarded to power NZ Battery investigation
    A consortium of specialist firms has been awarded a major contract to advance the New Zealand Battery Project’s feasibility investigation into a pumped hydro storage scheme at Lake Onslow, the Minister of Energy and Resources Megan Woods has announced. “This contract represents a major milestone as it begins the targeted ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Additional Funding for Foodbanks and Social Agencies
    The Government has approved $13.55m from the Covid Response and Recovery Fund to support foodbanks and social sector agencies, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni has announced. “Foodbanks and social agencies across Auckland are doing a great job supporting their communities and the Government is today providing them with more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Generating a new generation of guardians
    The Government is supporting a Whakatōhea-led project undertaking landscape scale restoration in forests and around vulnerable rivers within the Eastern Bay of Plenty, Minister of Conservation Kiri Allan says. “The Whakatōhea Tiaki Taiao project will employ four people to undertake pest and weed control, ecosystem restoration and monitoring over three ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Parts of Waikato, Northland staying at Alert Level 3
    The parts of Waikato that have been in Alert Level 3 and Northland will remain in Alert Level 3 for a few more days, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Auckland remains at Alert Level 3, Step 1. “Based on the latest public health information, ministers have decided that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New courthouses for Tauranga and Whanganui
    The Government is moving ahead with new courthouses in Tauranga and Whanganui, which the Justice Minister says provide an opportunity to redesign court facilities that help put victims at the heart of the justice system. “These courthouses are part of the 10-year infrastructure investment plan to restore and modernise Ministry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech on the launch of the consultation on the development of the Emissions Reduction Plan
    Tēnā koutou katoa. Ngā mihi o te ata. Earlier this month Save the Children wrote to me with their most up to date analysis on the impact of climate change. What they said was that children born in Aotearoa today will experience up to five times as many heatwaves and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Opportunity to shape NZ’s first Emissions Reduction Plan
    The Government is inviting New Zealanders to inform the country’s first Emissions Reduction Plan with the release of a consultation document containing a range of policy ideas to decrease the country’s emissions, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Climate Change Minister James Shaw announced today. The Emissions Reduction Plan will set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Convention on Biological Diversity COP 15, Virtual High-Level Segment
    Kia ora koutou katoa. I want to thank China for hosting this critically important Conference of the Parties. We are all here for the same reason. Biodiversity loss, and the ongoing degradation of nature, are accelerating at an unprecedented rate. These losses are causing irreparable harm to our planet’s ability ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government books show resilient and strong economy
    The end of year audited Crown accounts released today show the Government’s health led approach to the COVID-19 pandemic has protected New Zealand’s economy. “On almost every indicator the accounts show that the New Zealand economy has performed better than forecast, even as recently as the Budget in May. It ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • ​​​​​​​Health system is ready for assisted-dying law
    The health system is ready for the implementation of the End of Life Choice Act when it takes effect next month, making assisted dying legal in New Zealand, Health Minister Andrew Little said today. The law received 65.1 per cent support in a public referendum held alongside last year’s general ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Taking a lead in threat to curious kea
    Reducing lead poisoning of kea, the world’s only alpine parrot and one-time New Zealand bird of the year winner, is the goal of a two year project being backed by the Government’s Jobs for Nature programme, Minister of Conservation Kiri Allan says.  “Lead poisoning is a serious threat to this ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government provides certainty to working holiday and seasonal visa holders and employers for summer
    The Government will extend Working Holiday visas and Supplementary Seasonal Employment (SSE) work visas for six months to provide more certainty to employers and visa holders over the coming summer period, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi has announced. “This offers employers and visa holders the certainty they’ve been asking for going ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Lower card fees good for businesses, consumers
    The Bill to help lower the cost of the fees retailers get charged for offering contactless and debit payment options is another step closer to becoming law, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Dr David Clark said today. “COVID-19 has changed the way we spend our money, with online and contactless ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mandatory vaccination for two workforces
    High-risk workers in the health and disability sector to be fully vaccinated by 1 December, 2021, and to receive their first dose by 30 October School and early learning staff and support people who have contact with children and students to be fully vaccinated by 1 January, 2022, and to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Fund allows more Pacific community led vaccinations
    The Government has made $1.1 million available through ‘The Prepare Pacific Community Vaccination Fund’ to directly support Pacific community-led initiatives towards increasing vaccinations, said Associate Minister of Health, Aupito William Sio. “The best way to protect our communities from COVID-19 is through vaccination. “We need to explore every avenue to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Small business at heart of economic recovery across APEC region
    The Minister for Small Business says support for small and medium enterprises will remain ongoing as the Asia-Pacific region moves through response and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Stuart Nash today chaired a virtual summit from Wellington for the APEC Small and Medium Enterprises Ministerial Meeting (SMEMM). “APEC Ministers responsible ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Restrictions on abortion medication lifted for health practitioners
    Abortion services can now be provided in primary care, meaning people can access this care from someone like their trusted GP and in a familiar setting, Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. “By lifting some restrictions on the funded medications used for early medical abortions, more health ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Record day for Māori vaccinations
    More than 10,000 vaccinations were administered to Māori yesterday, the highest number in the vaccine campaign so far, Associate Minister of Health (Maori Health) Peeni Henare announced. There were 10,145 doses administered across the motu yesterday this is almost equivalent to the population of Hāwera. The doses are made up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on Joint Cooperation in Agriculture between Ireland and New Zealand
    8 October 2021 - Dublin, Ireland Agriculture plays an important role in the economic, social, environmental, and cultural wellbeing of Ireland and New Zealand. We are focused on increasing the productivity, inclusivity, and resilience of our respective primary sectors. As agri-food exporting nations, we also share a commitment to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Northland to move to Alert Level 3 tonight
    Northland will move to Alert Level 3 restrictions from 11:59pm tonight following recent information on the risk presented by the positive case initially tested in Whangarei earlier this week and confirmed in Auckland yesterday, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said. The person is now in an Auckland Managed Isolation Quarantine ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister's Christmas Card Competition
    It’s that time of year again! If you’d like to help design the Prime Minister’s official Christmas card, here’s how to take part: Draw, paint, sketch or craft an image you’d like to see on the front of this year’s Christmas card. It can be anything you want – a traditional ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Speech : Pacific Public Sector Fono – Friday 8th October 2021
    Greetings and Acknowledgements and Warm Pacific Greetings to one and all. It’s a privilege to be able to join with you this afternoon and share some remarks on how important you are to our communities throughout Aotearoa, and across the Pacific region. COVID-19 has been described as a one in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Pacific Public Sector Fono – Friday 8th October 2021
    Greetings and Acknowledgements and Warm Pacific Greetings to one and all. It’s a privilege to be able to join with you this afternoon and share some remarks on how important you are to our communities throughout Aotearoa, and across the Pacific region. COVID-19 has been described as a one in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruapehu social housing pilot, providing value for generations to come
    Housing Minister Hon Dr Megan Woods today announced the development of six social housing units funded by the Government’s Covid response infrastructure fund, to help work toward resolving Ruapehu's lack of social housing. “The Crown’s investment of $2.1 million in this project will provide value to the community for generations ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Children’s Commissioner Appointed
    Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni has announced  Judge Frances Eivers’ appointment as the new Children’s Commissioner. Judge Eivers, who is currently a District Court Judge in Manukau, will take up the role on 1 November 2021. She has been appointed for two years. The Children’s Commissioner is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago