Open mike 04/02/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, February 4th, 2022 - 161 comments
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Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

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Step up to the mike …

161 comments on “Open mike 04/02/2022 ”

  1. Dennis Frank 1

    It's a classic top-of-the-market sell-off:

    Facebook reported its first-ever quarterly decline of daily users globally this week, sending its stock price plummeting by 23 percent in intraday trading on Thursday… wiping at least $200 billion in market value from Mark Zuckerberg and the Masters of the Universe.

    The Masters will rebound, of course. They always do. As long as the left continues to hold hands with the right in supporting the system, the super-rich will get richer…

  2. Tiger Mountain 2

    Yesterdays announcement by the PM should be known henceforth as “white flag” day.

    After a lengthy and at times magnificent placing of public health before private profit, the pressure from the NZ ruling class, finance capital, petit bourgeoisie and Natzo driven media must have become too great for the Labour Caucus.

    What might have been…in terms of a different Aotearoa/NZ.

    • Ross 2.1

      Yeah nah the Government finally saw the light and realised that any more Charlotte Bellis-like debacles could prove fatal.

      Some people get it.

      Covid is real, but so are car accidents. Vaccines work, but so do seatbelts and speed limits. We do not ban cars and driving completely, but we also do not allow people to drive without a licence or at 200kmh. We allow people to ride their bikes but (at least in New Zealand) we compel them to wear helmets.

      Analogously, just like we ought not to ban cars in their entirety or abolish all speed and motoring regulations, we can strike a balance in our Covid policies. Vaccines and boosters can be promoted and masks mandated in high-risk areas without relying on crippling restrictions or isolationist border policies that close off Aotearoa to the rest of the world. It is clear that the benefits of the MIQ system are out of all proportion with the risks from Covid.

      Structural issues are important to consider, of course. Covid has a disproportionate impact on certain groups – and we should be aware of this – but so does any aspect of public policy, from gambling and food policy to actions such as driving. Driving is much riskier for young people, yet we do not necessarily restrict everyone else’s habits to accommodate this fact. These questions of priority and aggregation are not new. Covid is not exceptional in this regard. Public policy is always full of complex moral considerations that require balancing and aggregation.

      My fortunate experience with the disease should not be generalised nor taken for granted, but it is something that should also not be forgotten. Covid is not a harmless disease, as the tragic rates of mortality and morbidity associated with it show worldwide. At the same time, it is important to recognise an important fact: for the vast majority of vaccinated persons, Covid will not be a serious illness.

      • Ross 2.1.1

        The writer of that piece also says:

        “Life is full of risks and bad things, and we cannot make ourselves paralysed by them. Even those who previously championed a zero-Covid approach – notably the University of Edinburgh’s Chair of Global Public Health, Professor Devi Sridhar – have since acknowledged that we need to move on from restrictions and live with the virus in our community.”

        He is absolutely right. Bad things happen to good people, good things happen to bad people, and life isn’t necessarily fair. But we carry on living, just as we should.

        • mpledger

          The UK's change of elimination was lost pretty early. It's not an acknowledgement that he was wrong but an acknowledgement that there was no other choice.

        • AB

          life isn’t necessarily fair

          The existence of natural unfairness does not constitute a reason for adding a layer of human-created unfairness on top. Rather, it constitutes a moral imperative to do the opposite.

          But what the hell – I'm over dumb righties trotting out the "life isn't fair" mantra to justify the various built-in sociopathies of their ideology.

          • arkie

            Indeed, the point of society since it's very origins has been to transcend the state of nature through collective action.

            Years ago, the anthropologist Margaret Mead was asked by a student what she considered to be the first sign of civilization in a culture. The student expected Mead to talk about clay pots, tools for hunting, grinding-stones, or religious artifacts.

            But no. Mead said that the first evidence of civilization was a 15,000 years old fractured femur found in an archaeological site. A femur is the longest bone in the body, linking hip to knee. In societies without the benefits of modern medicine, it takes about six weeks of rest for a fractured femur to heal. This particular bone had been broken and had healed.

            Mead explained that in the animal kingdom, if you break your leg, you die. You cannot run from danger, you cannot drink or hunt for food. Wounded in this way, you are meat for your predators. No creature survives a broken leg long enough for the bone to heal. You are eaten first.

            A broken femur that has healed is evidence that another person has taken time to stay with the fallen, has bound up the wound, has carried the person to safety and has tended them through recovery. A healed femur indicates that someone has helped a fellow human, rather than abandoning them to save their own life.


          • Ross

            dumb righties

            I’ve got no idea who you’re talking about. I’m to the left of Karl Marx lol

            As for “adding a layer of human-created unfairness”, I’m sure that Charlotte Bellis and many others who have tried to enter MIQ would agree with you. By abolishing MIQ, we will be eliminating that human-created unfairness.

          • Blade

            ''But what the hell – I'm over dumb righties trotting out the "life isn't fair" mantra to justify the various built-in sociopathies of their ideology.''

            Dumb Righties? Well, that’s to be expected.

            Before you mouth off, you should check the backgrounds of people who supposedly are scions of priveldged blue blood stock.

            Yeah, sure their are some of those chinless wonders around. They wouldn't know a Maori if they tripped over one, they move in such rarefied environments.

            But that does a disservice to those who have worked hard all their lives, build businesses up and made something of their lives. They then decide to shout themselves a Porsche and what happens: lefties whinge about da fillfy rich living on the backs of workers.

            Back in the 90s, my boss had a Porsche. He told me he would get the fingers on a regular basis. Once someone yelled abuse at him; ran out and keyed his car. Being a top of the line turbo model, he paid big money to get it fixed.

            Bob Jones reported similar.

            There's nothing wrong with our ideology. That's why National gets big support from the Asian and Indian communities. These folk know the difference between lala land politics… and real word politics.

            Life ain't fair – fact. That doesn't mean you can't change your fate.

    • Blade 2.2

      Over the top nonsense, TM.

      ''Natzo driven media ''

      The default setting of our media is portside. Has been for a long time. However, they are prepared to go off the reservation now and again when they either want a sensational story…or they are just over an incumbent government.

      Any guesses which is which at the moment, TM?

      ''What might have been…in terms of a different Aotearoa/NZ.''

      What might have been? Bhutan with a 1984 mentality?

      • weka 2.2.1

        What might have been? Bhutan with a 1984 mentality?

        Everyone is happier, has a house to live in, and has a job?

        • Blade

          Your joking…right?

          Or are you doing a cunning reverse comparison?

        • Tiger Mountain

          Yes weka, exactly that kind of thing! There should not be one hungry or homeless person in this land of plenty. But we are clearly a “Tale of Two Cities” kind of country and have been for some decades.

          COVID exposed the neo liberal state all over again–two tier benefit system, digital divide, overcrowding, emphasis on needs of business and finance capital first, managerialist culture in the public service etc. Working class voices were rarely heard in the media, those quietly getting public transport to a low paid job to help keep things ticking over.

          Day after day the petit bourgeoisie whinged… those with roomy accomodation, well resourced home offices, full pantrys and an entitlement to roam the globe as they please, pressured the Labour Caucus relentlessly to end their brave strategy of putting public health before private profit.

          Selfish bludgers.

          • Subliminal

            Absolutely TM. Endless amplification of the whingeing priviledged convinces poll driven politicians to buckle. Of course, the whingeing will now only be orders of magnitude louder as the media smell the concentrating of blood. Perhaps an opportunity for the Greens if they can oppose the new direction and articulate a path. Really, managing covd has a lot of synergies with climate change mitigation. Both require powering down with a heavy local focus

            • Tiger Mountain

              “Really, managing covd has a lot of synergies with climate change mitigation. Both require powering down with a heavy local focus”

              Nice to hear someone else express that, really agree.

            • DukeEll

              you are hearing more from the privileged as the governing elite are doing less for the downtrodden than ever before. despite all the dreams and aspirations, homelessness and child poverty are up.

              I recall election promises from Labour to eliminate them. yet here they still are

          • Adrian Thornton

            "COVID exposed the neo liberal state all over again"
            Yep it exposed that alright, not just in NZ but also in every other freemarket economy run system on the planet..and it was exposed as a fact right into the faces of every single human being in every one of those countries…but will that fact be the primary discussion that will be relentlessly and deeply analyzed by our media and politicians going forward?, will there be any serious self critique by them and their role in this disaster…..sadly I think we all, already know the answer to that question.

            And we all know exactly what happens when lessons are not learned….

    • Grantoc 2.3

      The PM’s choices were stark. Listen, for once, to the people and give them more or less what they want; or, continue to impose a rigid public health response for ideological reasons that the people would increasingly ignore, and deliberately be non compliant with, and prepare to be voted out in 2023.

      Her decision to begin to open the borders was entirely political.

      • pat 2.3.1

        Dont doubt politics played its part but not 'entirely'.

        As much as many wish to dismiss it, there is real economic risk building after 2 years of restricted activity, many of the SMEs that employ the bulk of NZs workforce have survived through using savings or borrowing and paring their costs as low as possible….that only works for so long. Added to that the enabler of credit for these businesses appears about to rollover creating further demands on them in terms of debt/credit….and now Omicron is in the community likely to further restrict the already reduced activity.

        They have run out of the one thing they cant print or buy…time.

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    Even Howard Kurtz, Fox News reporter, is aghast at Trump:

    Trump, with his daily blasts to reporters, pounds away at the "rigged" election virtually every day. Just the other day, he said Mike Pence could have "overturned the election" – saying the quiet part out loud, rather than just contending he was insisting on a fair Electoral College count. And at a weekend rally, Trump floated the idea of pardoning the Jan. 6 defendants if he wins back the White House.

    The New York Times investigative report on Trump and voting machines pulls back the curtain on really a troubling episode, especially for those who view him as having attempted a coup. What Trump was considering went so far that even Rudy Giuliani, no stranger to conspiracy theories, tried to block the plans as being beyond the pale.

    The gist is that Trump explored having the Pentagon, Justice Department or Homeland Security seize voting machines in disputed states based on a complete lack of evidence that they had been tampered with. The voting machine theories, promoted by fringe characters around Trump, were the wackiest of all, said to include machinations involving Venezuela and Hugo Chavez.

    The Times piece says Trump ordered Giuliani, six weeks after the election, to ask if Homeland Security could impound the voting machines in crucial swing states. Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli told Rudy he didn’t have the authority to do that. Trump asked William Barr if DOJ could seize the machines. Barr told the president "that the Justice Department had no basis for seizing the machines because there was no probable cause to believe a crime had been committed."

    Trump also pressed state lawmakers in places like Michigan and Pennsylvania to use local law enforcement to seize voting machines, but they refused as well. Finally, in mid-December, Michael Flynn and Sidney Powell handed Trump a draft executive order, in the Oval, directing the military to seize voting machines. The president called in Giuliani, who warned the military could be used only if there was clear evidence of foreign interference in the election. Powell said she had such evidence involving China and others.

    So there's a divide on the right between those who see any pretext to break the law as workable & those who are averse to non-workable pretexts. Trump, a New Yorker, learnt how to succeed by gaming the system. Rules can always be bent, and sometimes broken if your lawyer sees a way through. That view has been traditional in NYC since the 19th century if not longer. I'm inclined to bet that the US justice system isn't quite so malleable, and will defeat the Don.

  4. Tony Veitch (not etc.) 4

    I am concerned by what appears to be an alarming trend in covid figures around the world.

    Case numbers have dropped, but deaths have continued to rise. This seems especially true of Australia and the US.

    Can it be that omicron is not as 'mild' as has been trumpeted?

    • Sabine 4.1

      Not sure about OZ, but the US has a very unhealthy population. Obesity, Diabetes, living on Oxygen tanks, bad overall health, smoking, high drug use (fentantyl, carfenantyl etc). I think what would be interested in the break down of death would be a. jabbed vs unjabbed, b. type of comorbidity, c. age, d. socio economic caste, e. living arrangements to gauge why the numbers are so high.

      I have been following the numbers in the UK and all three indicators are falling, i.e. number of daily cases, number of hospitalisation and number of death. (seven day average). Yes, it is the daily fail, but they have nice graphs that show the info in one page,

    • weka 4.2

      what Sabine said about the US. I assume Australia hasn't peaked with omicron yet but the UK has because they got it earlier?

      Can it be that omicron is not as 'mild' as has been trumpeted?

      Whoever started and whoever ran with the narrative that omicron is mild did a lot of damage. It's less severe in individuals, but because it infects so many more people there are more deaths etc.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 4.3

      My two cents worth – consensus opinion of medical experts is that infection with the Omicron variant typically results in less severe symptoms than Delta, so it's good that Omicron has largely displaced Delta.

      However, due to an unusual combination of mutations that no one could have predicted, Omicron is significantly more transmissible than earlier variants, and so the number of people with an active COVID-19 (largely Omicron) infection has more than doubled (to 75 million globally) in the last month – by far the most rapid rise in active cases so far in this pandemic.

      And so, despite increasing vaccine coverage and improved treatment regimes (particularly in developed countries), the enormous increase in the number of Omicron-infected individuals was always likely to increase the number of COVID-related deaths.

      The current trend of increasing reported daily deaths (~10,000 per day at the moment) will continue – with any luck the numbers will peak before reaching the previous tragic 'highs' of ~15,000 deaths per day back in January (also a seasonal component to consider) and May 2021.

      • McFlock 4.3.1

        Pretty much.

        Still up in the air as to whether the math will be better overall than original covid or much worse, but there's still no room for complacency.

        • DukeEll

          Who below the age of 22 could do the math in NZ?

          • McFlock

            Well, probably anyone passing year12/13 math would have many of the tools, but to be sure about some of the stuff like confidence intervals and p values and confidence intervals, most people taking first year papers in epidemiology, finance&quantitative analysis, advanced first year stats, and maybe people who went into quant research as part of 2nd year pols or 3rd year marketing courses.

            So literally tens of thousands of young people.

            When the data eventually becomes available, of course.

    • Craig H 4.4

      Deaths tend to lag case numbers by a few weeks because usually it takes at least a few weeks to decline to that point (and is often a lot longer with modern treatment and ICU capability).

  5. Blade 5

    This government is feeling the pressure. And deservedly so. They have been found remiss on many fronts.

    HDA applied the hurt to Andrew Little yesterday. Little accused HDA of having an attitude.

    5 bars into the clip (blush clip timer not working) is a short excerpt from that interview.

    • Muttonbird 5.1

      Andrew Little is right, HPDA has a dreadful attitude.

      • Jimmy 5.1.1

        Anyone that dares to point out the inefficiencies of this government apparently has a terrible attitude.

        • Blazer

          Kate Hawkesby,Hosking,McIvor, Allen ,Russell and all the Tim's on radio…all repeat the very same lines…'hermit kingdom' is a good example.

        • Muttonbird

          It's a one way street with that lot. It's shock jock broadcasting, and highly unprofessional, imo.

          Let us all reflect for a moment on Covid deaths/million:

          USA – 2751
          UK – 2304
          Sweden – 1575
          Denmark – 654
          Australia – 154

          New Zealand – 11

      • Sabine 5.1.2

        bwhahahahahaha, did she not know her place?

      • Puckish Rogue 5.1.3

        I know right, the temerity to question Andrew Little.

        • Muttonbird

          HADP shows zero attempt at balance in her 'broadcasting', if you can call it that. She has an agenda, of that there is no doubt, so let's stop pretending she's just asking questions, ok?

          I would have thought she'd be a bit more grateful for New Zealand's pandemic response after Covid killed her own grandmother in a country which has very few tools with which to fight Coronavirus.

          That she wants NZ to shift more towards South Africa's position and put rest home residents at massive risk is totally beyond me.

          As always with RWNJs, personal profit trumps societal good, even when it's your own family suffering.

  6. Blazer 6

    Not long to wait for Sandra…and others…


    It is hoped Novavax could persuade those who were hesitant to get jabbed to reconsider, as it uses older technology they will trust.

    Novavax is different to the other vaccines being rolled out in the UK, as it is made using protein-based tech – like the Hepatitis B jab.

    Professor Paul Heath, who led the trials in the UK, said: "We do believe there are people out there who have been waiting for a vaccine that has been developed with a more traditional platform, such as the Novavax vaccines.

    Novavax becomes FIFTH Covid jab to get green light in UK with 60m doses on order (

  7. Dennis Frank 7

    Had me grinning all the way through! Chris Trotter on the Hipkins debacle:

    he just kept right on digging himself into a deeper hole. The National Opposition, and their Act ally, were not slow to take advantage of the Labour Government’s folly. Unsurprising, since, when it came to ammunition, they were spoiled for choice.

    The utter madness of the Government’s response may be judged by the way it instantly devalued any and all decision-making related to MIQ policy. Whatever the Cabinet decided to do: no matter how far it went towards meeting the public’s expectations and/or criticisms; it could not now avoid being read by the electorate as a policy concession forced upon Labour by the Bellis Embarrassment.

    The madness of Minister Hipkins also provided the National Opposition Leader, Chris Luxon, with an opportunity to, in effect, piggy-back on the public interest… Luxon and his advisers, undoubtedly buoyed by the results of the latest Roy Morgan poll (showing National/Act backed by 50 percent of the voting public) could hardly be blamed for marking the past seven days as the week Fortune’s tide re-floated the Centre-Right’s boats.

    Yeah, Hipkins was the Nats' secret weapon against Labour. Wonder if they'll give him the nickname Patsy?

    Perhaps the most difficult aspect of the Bellis Embarrassment to understand is what on earth possessed those writing the rules to erect even the smallest obstacles to pregnant New Zealand women returning to their homeland to give birth. For most older New Zealanders, the rule has always been: “Women and children first – and pregnant women before everyone!” We were raised on the tragic example of the doomed “Titanic” – where men gave up their places in the lifeboats for the bearers of the next generation.

    What does it say about the current crop of public servants that they were able to create a labyrinth of rules and regulations that made it possible for a British deejay to be welcomed into this country, while denying re-entry to a stranded Kiwi woman and her unborn child?

    Well I already explained that a few days ago – they were doing their duty as operational agents of the patriarchy. Discriminating against females is an ingrained default position. One rule for all defeats humanitarian considerations any day in the public service. Special circumstances are no excuse!

    More to the point, what does it say about the current crop of Labour ministers – Chris Hipkins in particular – that they did not intervene, with righteous wrath, to put an end to this unconscionable rejection of that most basic human instinct: the urge to protect, at any cost, mothers and their children?

    Yeah, I can explain that too! Intervening to impose a policy of kindness on public servants would have meant practising what the PM preached. A bunch of hypocrites wouldn't want to do so, obviously. They knew she was just uttering meaningless blather. The possibility of implementing her advice to the people of Aotearoa probably never even occurred to them. They know they're above the people, so her exhortation couldn't possibly apply to them!

    • Anne 7.1

      From the linked piece:

      "… what on earth possessed those writing the rules to erect even the smallest obstacles to pregnant New Zealand women returning to their homeland to give birth."

      I think it is more likely those implementing the rules who were the problem, not the writers of the rules.

      And here is another example:

      He described the ordeal as “pretty horrific and distressing”.

      “The spraying of our plants seems like overkill, we would’ve been happy if someone had knocked on our door and said ‘hey we’ve had a complaint’ or something … we would’ve destroyed them if they asked us to,” he said.

      “We’re just a mother and father … good community jobs, we work in the community, we help the community with sports, we’re both in community groups and are working for non-profit organisations. We don’t understand why we got targeted in a distressing manner.

      Given the couple’s circumstances: "overkill" indeed.

      • Dennis Frank 7.1.1

        I think it is more likely those implementing the rules who were the problem, not the writers of the rules.

        Except the bunny who was mis-managing admitted a few days ago that they addressed the question of whether to prioritise pregnant kiwi returnees back in October and decided not to do so. Being inhumane apparently seemed a better option to them. Naturally no reason for that decision was given to the media.

        • Craig H

          My guess would be they couldn't rank them above more serious categories like cancer patients and the like, so didn't.

          • Shanreagh

            True, or heart patients overseas.

            Also may have felt like many of us that pregnancy is not actually an illness. The over medicalisation of pregnancy was a concern of older generation women's rights issues. Cancer or heart disease are illnesses.

            A normal pregnancy is not an illness though clearly travelling during late trimester 3 can be concerning.

            There are illnesses that do happen during pregnancy such as gestational diabetes, eclampsia, umbilical cord and placenta abnormalities and these are rightly regarded alongside heart failure and cancer.

            As an old time woman's libber I am doing a fair amount of twitching at what seem to me to be rather patriarchical concepts of women being sick when they are pregnant.

        • Anne

          That's interesting. Who was the bunny Dennis?

    • vto 7.2

      "Well I already explained that a few days ago – they were doing their duty as operational agents of the patriarchy. Discriminating against females is an ingrained default position."


      You didn't "explain", you assumed.

      With zero evidence


      And here you still are banging on about your own heavy sexism.


      • Dennis Frank 7.2.1

        So it still hasn't occurred to you that your denial could seem plausible if you thought of a more likely explanation. Any idea how long you'll have to wait for it to occur? 🙄

        • vto

          nope.. not about me… about your evidence-less statements and bias (which by your sentence above indicates that because you can't think of an explanation you let your biases fill the gap – very revealing i must say)

          oh and still no evidence I see

    • Shanreagh 7.3

      Yeah, I can explain that too! Intervening to impose a policy of kindness on public servants would have meant practising what the PM preached. A bunch of hypocrites wouldn't want to do so, obviously. They knew she was just uttering meaningless blather. The possibility of implementing her advice to the people of Aotearoa probably never even occurred to them. They know they're above the people, so her exhortation couldn't possibly apply to them!


      Is there any time that you have a good word for Public Servants? These complaints you have do not reflect the PS I loved and worked in for 36 years.

      We mostly saw ourselves as working for the public despite the neolib reforms having us work for Ministers. The ones I know took pride in doing a good job, where legislation was concerned and where decisions were required,we carefully looked at all factors and approved where we legally could do so. To approve where we could not legally do so put us at risk from litigation, rehearings and other time- and energy- wasteful happenings.

      Decisions being made in a legal context can look at the legal aspects from 'a fair large & liberal way' or one that focuses on the 'plain meaning'. Both are accepted ways of looking at legislation.

      We focussed on having the best processes to turn around decisions while still maintaining the prime focus on the legalities of our actions. Where there was a gap we focussed on letting the Minister know this and arguing for priority on legislative programmes.

      We focussed on bettering our communications of decisions, of letting people know their rights to have the decisions reviewed. We focussed on being approachable. In all of these aspects we did our very best according to our work place ways of working and the legislation/policies we were administering.

      I know that public servant bashing is what passes for thoughtful commentary in some sectors of our society. I am surprised to see it here.

      As for the Bellis case. She applied under the incorrect category, she told the decision makers to 'shove it' when they suggested she apply under the correct category, as I understand it, by saying they had all the info and left them with making a decision under the only category they could where the info was clear and where they could get support and that was that where she was living currently may be dangerous. And still she complains and you complain that decision makers were not kind.

      I am picking that should there be a review of the process that the the decisionmakers' actions, on the info they were given, it will find that the actions were justified. What also may come out is that there is the potential for tweaking the process. This is NOT the same as saying that the decision was incorrect but that we are always learning to make the process better.

      The Public Servants I worked with knew that by doing their jobs well according to the process, policies and legislation was the biggest kindness we could have for the public.

      Perhaps a reflection on the chip permanently on lodged on your shoulder together with the mote in your eye could be useful. You are weighed down.

      I for one don't value this kind of opinion.

      • Dennis Frank 7.3.1

        So it hasn't yet occurred to you that attempting to defend an indefensible system is a mistake. Plus you haven't noticed that the attitudes and actual behaviours that caused the problem need to be eliminated. Feeble excuses will never shift public opinion!

        It also seems that you haven't learnt the lesson from the deputy PM having to intervene to clean up the mess Hipkins made. You are normally perceptive, so I suspect there's a belief system between you & reality on this issue. Damage control as a political response always indicates damage done.

        Trying to blame bystanders is classic aversion to facing up to the situation. As soon as we saw Robertson belatedly conceding the error (even if only tacitly) it ought to have been obvious to any leftist with half a working brain that the mistake was made.

        • Shanreagh

          I was not defending the indefensible I clearly stated the part of your post that I took issue with.

          Yeah, I can explain that too! Intervening to impose a policy of kindness on public servants would have meant practising what the PM preached. A bunch of hypocrites wouldn't want to do so, obviously. They knew she was just uttering meaningless blather. The possibility of implementing her advice to the people of Aotearoa probably never even occurred to them. They know they're above the people, so her exhortation couldn't possibly apply to them!

          You do not seem to understand how legislation works or the decision making process works in the PS yet you feel you can criticise what went on here.

          Mere mortals who get it wrong in say Immigration cases or the area where I worked either providing wrong info, applying in the wrong category or late do not get get this OTT treatment she has. To do so is fraught as decision makers risk the charge of favouring some and not others when the circumstances are the same.

          I have had years of experiences as a decision maker in legislation, in Ministerial reviews, where this is allowed, Judicial reviews (thankfully very few) , rehearings, Ombudmen reviews in working through to see if mistakes were made…..across three different departments plus working in some health related complaints processes.

          I am really not interested in the Bellis case as an indicator of how the Public Service works, sorry. She was largely the author, deliberately possibly, I am thinking of her own misfortune. She applied in the wrong category, she doubled down on her mistake. She has succeeded because she is one who attempts to make a case in the court of public opinion. Bullying Ministers is a game for some, just as bullying public servants who traditionally don't and can't bite back seems to be a game for you.

          Many PS with decision making powers have come across the Bellis' of this world.

          They are always with us but the reality is that for every 'looka me looka me there are 100s who carefully provided the info, trusted the process or if they were disappointed and felt they had grounds took a rehearing approach. They are the bulk and they realise that if a legal decision needs to be made that it is not automatically go in their favour…..they need to do some work too.

          You mention the DPM he also said that the approval in this case should not be taken as meaning that someone can squawk from overseas and get their way or words to that effect.

          All systems need periodic review, all systems where decisions are made by real people according to legislation or policy go wonky as we are all human.

          If you know anything about the law, or admin law that governs decision making, you will have heard of the truism 'hard cases make bad law'. This is because of the precedent value so that unless the case is 'distinguished' in some way stupid rules can be set in place. This will be what is behind the DPM saying don't think anyone can jump up and down from overseas and make a big fuss and get similar treatment.

          You talk of blaming bystanders (not really sure what this means as Bellis is not a bystander) and yet this is exactly what happened in the Bellis case. She splattered all over the news and is still splattering. She did not hesitate to blame bystanders ie people other than the actual decision makers as well as the decision makers themselves.

          Anyway this is too much about such an unimportant person….

          The key point is that legal decision makers in the PS wander from the bounds of the law, to be kind, if that means approving cases that don't line up with the legislation.

          The best way 'to be kind' in a department where legal decision making is carried out is to

          have clear, but not set in stone, processes

          clear indications of what applicants need to provide,

          policy on what happens if info is not provided ie decline and new application provided or we work with you and wait.

          good processes to convey the decisions to the applicants, including rehearing or review possibilities

          decision makers who are fit for purpose ie experienced and well resourced

          legislation that is fit for purpose

          processes for delegating up if need be.

          I am quite sure any business planner worth their salt will be able to work out what 'being kind' in their own department would look like, milestones or KPIs or whatever and then flow it down to the job descriptions and person specifications and yearly work plans.

    • Puckish Rogue 7.4

      Remember when Sir John Key was in power and it seemed like every time National might falter Labour would shoot itself in the foot?

      I tell you whut, at the start of the year I thought Labour/Green would be an easy bet for the next election because the evil, patriarchal media had it in for St Jude and would then certainly move against Luxon but now its feeling more and more like pre-covid times when National/Act were in the ascendance

      That budget better be a good one

      • Dennis Frank 7.4.1

        Too early to be confident of a trend. The anomaly in ACT poll ratings is now the thing to watch. There's a huge difference between Luxon pulling Nat refugees back to the tune of 5% or so and having zero effect! Likewise for any continual drifting down of Labour or stabilising around 40%.

        If media seemed to be set against JC you have to take into account her lack of drawing centrists back across the line – which would have given them reason to talk up her prospects.

        I agree the budget is an inflexion point but primarily with regard to policy spending. It's policy delivery that will be critical from now on. That gives folks a sense of reassurance that Labour can be competent despite screw-ups.

        • Puckish Rogue

          I found it interesting that the poll didn't seem to be on stuff, newshub, nzherald or rnz or if it was I couldn't locate it

          But you are correct one swallow doesn't make a Summer and all that

          • Dennis Frank

            I meant the contrast between the one we discussed here a few days ago (a week? Roy Morgan) & the earlier Kantar poll. I don't do onsite searches here but probably not hard to find…

          • alwyn

            If you are looking for the Roy Morgan Poll it is here.


            They seem to now be doing it every month but they are never in any hurry to put it online. They are always on their website.

            • Puckish Rogue

              How many people go to their site though, in comparison to stuff, nzherald, newshub etc etc

              • alwyn

                It's probably only looked at by the political tragics. They only seem to do it for their own interest and just toss the questions in during other polling they carry out.

                I see it because I get an e-mail newsletter from them each business day with short summaries of Australian business stories. The include a link to any polls they have just published so I see them from there. I certainly wouldn't bother looking there just in case they had published something.

                It used to be a very good poll because they did it every fortnight and you could see trends. Now it is once a month and for a while it was even less than that.

  8. tsmithfield 8

    Covid Modelling suggested there will be 50000 cases in NZ by Monday.

    Looks like its going to be a close run thing with under 150 cases reported the other day…smiley

    Some of these organisations should give up and start interpreting tea-leaf patterns or something. They would probably be more accurate.

    • vto 8.1

      Yep. Friday last week 'modellers' said 200 cases by end of weekend. Still haven't hit that. Useless

      • Adrian 8.1.1

        Those figures are based on the nearest thing they had to go on, i.e Australian state figures. Our 94% vax rate, better mask use etc may just be working to slow every thing down. Aussies in NSW, Vic etc were more cavalier.

        Remember that back in Oct,Nov, Dec in 21 thier projections done months before for Delta were pretty much right on the money.

        • tsmithfield

          So, given all that, why are so many freaking out about the border opening up?

          • Poission

            The case load spread is low at present,due to most Kiwis managing the risk by not entering high risk situations such as hospitality, and using non pharmaceutical interventions such as masks etc, here you have the wisdom of the masses.

            The arguments for open borders and resumption of tourism is an own goal for hospitality by destroying their local market.


            • tsmithfield

              Probably people getting freaked out by modelling forecasts that don't even come close to eventuating doesn't help that either.

              • weka

                Dude, ffs, the reason we don't end up with worst case scenarios is because the NZ government took lots of precautions that prioritised health.

              • Poission

                Panic early is a wise defensive strategy under fat tail events.

                Taleb et al.

                One may be entitled to ask: as we get to know the disease, do the tails get thinner? Early in the game one must rely on conditional information, but as our knowledge of the disease progresses, should we not be allowed to ignore tails?

                Alas, no. The scale of the pandemic might change, but the tail properties will remain invariant. Furthermore, there is an additional paradox. If one does not take the pandemic seriously, it will likely run wild (particularly under the connectivity of the modern world, several orders of magnitude higher than in the past (Albert & Barabasi, 2002)). And diseases mutate, increasing or decreasing in both lethality and contagiousness. The argument would therefore resemble the following: “we have not observed many plane crashes lately, let’s relax our safety measures”.

                Finally, we conclude this section with an encouraging point: fat tails do not make the world more complicated and do not cause frivolous worries; on the contrary. Understanding them actually reduces costs of reaction because they tell us what to target – and when to do so. Because network models tend to follow certain patterns to generate large tail events (Albert and Barabasi, 2002, Garibaldi and Scalas, 2010), in front of contagious diseases wisdom in action is to kill the exponential growth in the egg via three central measures: (1) reducing super-spreader events; (2) monitoring and reducing mobility for those coming from far-away places (via quarantines); (3) looking for cheap measures with large payoffs in terms of the reduction of the multiplicative effects (e.g. face masks10 ). Anything that “demultiplies the multiplicative” helps (Taleb, 2020c).

                Drastic shotgun measures such as lockdowns are the price of avoiding early traveler quarantines and border monitoring; they can be – temporarily and cum grano salis – of help, especially in the very early stages of the new contagious disease, when uncertainty is maximal, to help isolating and tracing the infections, and also buying some time for understanding the disease and the way it spreads. Indeed such drastic and painful measures can carry long-lasting damages to the system, not counting an excessive price in terms of personal freedoms.

                But they are the price of not having a good coordinated tail risk management in place – to repeat, border monitoring and control of superspreader events being the very first such measures. And lockdowns are the costs of ignoring arguments such as increased connectivity in our environment and conflating additive and multiplicative risks.

                To conclude, as the trader lore transmitted by generations of operators goes, “if you must panic, it pays to panic early”.


          • Muttonbird

            The team of 5 million are very, very good at Covid health measures. As Adrian said we are very good at mask-wearing, social distancing, scanning, and staying in work bubbles.

            Most of us don't do anything stupid because of the, 'no-one is going to tell me what to do' attitude which exists in Australia.

            When you throw open the border you are importing very poor adherence to health measures because the returnees and foreign citizens have been conditioned to not bother, it's all too hard for them.

            Can't model the piss poor attitude of other countries accurately.

          • Shanreagh

            @ TS Smithfield
            Well modelling is the very last reason I am 'freaking out' as you call it about the border opening.

            My real concern is at the missed opportunities to effect real change in NZ especially on:


            climate change,

            signalling changes to our immigration regime

            opting for high value tourism rather than a commodity approach, ie stuff them in planes then camper vans and they will come

            signalling desirable change to our exports rather than cheese, milk powder and logs ie away from commodities and more processing here in NZ.

            All delivered in a quid pro quo manner ie RSE and agricultural tractors drivers will be able to come this year but next there will be a sinking lid so if you had 100 next year you will have 60 etc. To move to full time careers across agriculture.

            Huge opportunities to effect some little changes that make bigger changes have been missed. .

      • Macro 8.1.2

        Hmmmm thought you were tempting fate a bit there. Modellers right on the button unfortunately.

      • mary_a 8.1.3

        209 new cases announced today ahead of the long weekend.

    • pat 8.2

      Its important to remember that the modelling (attempts) to show the real incidence….not the confirmed testing rate. Especially in a high incidence environment the chances of finding all of the cases by testing will diminish as that incidence increases.

    • Jimmy 8.3

      Yes these modelling people are an absolute joke. Was it Shaun (80,000 will die) Hendy by any chance? How much money are we wasting on these people. And I disagree with Hipkins comment that the modelling is useful (even though extremely inaccurate) rather than no modelling. I think no modelling is actually better unless they want to try and scare the public?

      • weka 8.3.1

        What Hendy actually said. In March 2020.

        New research suggests up to 80,000 Kiwis could die from coronavirus without strict measures such as the country-wide lockdown.

        It also shows that the lockdown may have to last far longer than a month to keep the strain on the healthcare system manageable.

        But one of the paper's authors said New Zealand's speed at adopting a lockdown could mean we "stamp out" the disease much faster.

        So right at the start of the pandemic, when we didn't know how things were going to play out, modellers did the best they could. The NZ government did in fact lock down hard and early and did in fact stamp out the first wave of covid in NZ.

        You'd have to be some kind of idiot to suggest they were wrong to do that. Or heartless.

        • tsmithfield

          But it was a wild over-estimate though, wasn't it?

          We have had 17005 cases and 53 deaths to date. That equates to around 3000 deaths per million.

          So, if everyone in NZ had contracted covid, it would have equated to around 15000 deaths, nothing like 80000.

          And remember, a lot of those deaths were elderly people with underlying conditions. So, the death rate probably wouldn’t have even been that high.

          • Jimmy

            That is far too logical (and not enough fear factor). Government should be paying you to do the modelling for them as you have built in common sense to your model. Well done.

            • McFlock

              The dude can't even distinguish between 400 days and 600 days (give or take).

              Screw the govt, the national party are looking for a new pollster. tsmithfield should probably take that on.

              • tsmithfield

                Well, that just makes my point even more strongly doesn't it?

                80000 deaths from 89% of the population infected within 400 days from his report.

                However, the figures I posted assumed that the whole population got Covid not just most.

                So, it makes Hendy's figures even more of an over-estimate.

          • McFlock

            "to date" vs the time range in the model.

            But then you can also wave away 15,000 dead in 2 years, so… whatever.

          • The Unliving

            A wild overestimate? That is circular reasoning. The reason we didn't have that that many deaths was because of the lockdowns, social distancing masking etc.

            And it's not like that exact number was predicted. 80,000 was the peak number (with no controls) assuming an 89% infection rate and a 1.67% mortality rate. At the low end (with all controls on) the model predicted around 20 deaths based on a 0.04% infection rate and a 0.0004% mortality rate (link).

            Until the arrival of the Delta variant in August, we were sitting on 26 deaths. Not too far off, were they?

      • Koff 8.3.2

        Stuff has an article about what's happening with Omicron numbers. Hipkins was probably right when he compared disease spread modelling with weather forecasting. It's all about what could happen, not what will happen.

      • McFlock 8.3.3

        The Hendy who predicted 20-30 deaths in 400 days if we went early and hard with lockdowns, you mean?

        80k was the projection for zero change in behaviour: no lockdowns, masking, border controls, mobility changes, school closures, etc.

        Looking at places like Sweden or UK, he wasn't too far off – still overcounts what they've had by about 10 times, but then they did do half-arse some measures and lots of individuals choose to self-isolate regardless of what their stupid governments might say.

        Modelling isn't perfect, but choosing the furthest extreme from reality in an attempt to discredit the projection is as good as lying.

        • Jimmy

          Maybe I was being too definitive like Grant Robertson often is, I will look up Sweden deaths shortly as you say, he was pretty close in his predictions to them so I imagine with the population around double ours they will have close to 160,000 deaths as they didn’t lock down originally.

          • McFlock

            They didn't mandate lockdowns. That doesn't mean that everyone acted according to business as usual.

        • Jester

          "Modelling isn't perfect,"

          That's the understatement of the year!

    • Bearded Git 8.4

      tsmithfield-The Central Otago Queenstown Trail Network Trust predicted that 13,500 people would be using the new (Clyde to Cromwell) Lake Dunstan Trail by 2032.

      62,000 people used the trail in the first 10 months.

      They must be using the same modelers as used for Covid.

    • Puckish Rogue 8.5

      Look at that, something Hipkins and I agree on

  9. Adrian 9

    If ALL pregnant NZ citizens overseas were given direct access to MIQ the Government would have been criticised by the usually outraged for framing pregnancy as a medical abnormality. Considering that one of the main tenets of the 60s and 70s feminist movement was the desire to normalise pregnancy, no more of the sexist "little woman " and "in confinement " bullshit that was rife up until then. Governments are damned if they do and damned if they don't.

    • Sabine 9.1

      If the government would have could have…..but it did not. It did not put up a category that said 'pregnant woman'.

      Between the misogyny of the left and the right, women will do what they have to do for themselves and their children, alive or unborn, take care of business one way or another.

      • Blazer 9.1.1

        Yet you stated Bellis should have her child in…Afghanistan, with its hopeless medical facilities!

        Reminds me of Julie-Ann Grandstander riding a fucking bike to hospital,when she's about to…drop.-hopeless.

        • weka

          Yet you stated Bellis should have her child in…Afghanistan, with its hopeless medical facilities!

          That as Sabine making a political point, which seems to have gone over your head.

          What exactly was wrong with Genter riding her bike to hospital?

          • Blazer

            Both represent a danger to the unborn child….file both under …grandstanding…what if JAG fell off her bike,heavily pregnant.

            • weka

              how many times has JAG fallen off her bike?

              • Sabine

                The point is not that. She could have, a heavy contraction, a drunk driver on the road, roaming dog, any sort of stuff could have happened. Teh point is, that she did not needed to do that, that driving in a vehicle to the hospital while being in contractions close enough to go to the hospital would have been an ok thing to do even for JAG.

                • weka

                  My reply to your deleted comment,

                  Having to sit in the back of a car while in labour (the ‘normal’ way), trying to keep my seatbelt on and wishing i could move around, was pretty much the worst part. You’re awesome Julie Anne!

                  A commenter on JAG's FB page when she posted the photo.


                  she could simply have fallen of hte bike

                  A risk assessment I think she is quite capable of making.

                  , been run over,

                  Same, and it was 2am.

                  or not made it in time.

                  Could also happen during the day in a taxi stuck in traffic. I bet she made a risk assessment here too.

                • weka

                  that's your point. My point is that if it's not about her skill on a bike, then it's about saying no pregnant women should ride bikes in labour. What about the day before she went into labour?

                  • UncookedSelachimorpha

                    …saying no pregnant women should ride bikes in labour

                    But duh… Last time I checked she was in the greens.

                    Sorry. Sorry.

        • Peter

          Afghanistan must have hopeless medical facilities and poor catering for births all right. The population is 38 million. Were they all born in some other country?

          • Sabine

            no they were all born in Afghanistan and pregnant women and children die in childbirth like they are using a hospital in Austria before the doctors there understood that washing hands after an autopsy before working on a women in labour is thing.


            638 women

            Afghanistan has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world, according to United Nations data. Some 638 women die per 100,000 live births


            fewer than 60 per cent of births are overseen by skilled health professionals.

            that is from 2020 when the times were still good. And for what its worth, this number is the 'counted number' of women who will die in a hospital, the ones that die at home are not counted.

            But its ok, its just women, and women give birth every day, and if they die….oh well that is their lot, right?

          • weka

            Afghanistan must have hopeless medical facilities and poor catering for births all right. The population is 38 million. Were they all born in some other country?

            This is a very ignorant thing to say. Women have poor birth outcomes for a whole range of reasons, including poverty. I would guess living under the Taliban adds additional layers of risk before we even get to medical facilities. But if you have a pregnancy complication that needs specialist hospital care and there is no specialist hospital care then women and babies sometimes die. Afghanistan has one of the worst maternal mortality rates in the world. This is really not hard to understand.

            • weka

              Despite some improvements over the past years, Afghanistan has one of the highest maternal and newborn mortality rates in the world, and the need for specialised care is vital. In Switzerland, five mothers will die per 100,000 live births. In Afghanistan, this number jumps to 638 who will die; this does not include the 15 mothers and five unborn babies who were systematically shot dead in the maternity ward where I work a month ago.


        • Sabine

          yes, i did, and i put a lot of words before and after that snipped and you are very much taking my words out of context.

          What i did say, is i think she should find the Medicins Sans Frontiers ( the last NGO in Afghanistan that still provides maternity services to Afghani Women) and if she gets stuck there she should do a daily post/blog/podcast to shine light on the abhorrent treatment of hte women in that country. That would have made for some good news every day, and may have shamed some of those that have no care in the world about the treatment of the women in that country who are oppressed because of their SEX.

          And I would like you to remember that i also posted up a nice wordy speech of Laura Bush telling us that we should invade for the good of the women of Afganistan. Or is that inconvenient in your selective quoting.

          Fact is again, Dear Blazer, that women will do what women have to do in order to live their lifes safely, and that includes their children born and unborn.

          And just so you truly understand what i am saying,

          The benign sexism of the left is as abhorrent as the sexism of hte right. Both would like to disappear us into nothingness, the one by way of Gender WOO and self identity and hte other by way of standard old fashioned sexism. Both have the same effect, it is to the detriment of women, and to the detriment of pregnant women.

          And last, yes, she did make the government look bad, and that was solely the fault of the Government. Maybe someone needs to educate these highly educated people about sex, biology and how babies are made and born.

    • Jimmy 9.2

      How about this for radical thinking, If you have a NZ Passport and are double vaxed and have a negative Covid test prior to departure, you can come back to NZ.

      • weka 9.2.1

        and omicron covid with you.

        • Sabine

          yes, and then they go into MIQ or an isolation facility.

          We can not keep the country locked up for ever and we can not keep citizens out forever.

          What I would like to know is: Has the government of NZ done anything to help stranded kiwis get Visas overseas for the duration of the time it takes them to go home. I.e. Visas, work visas, residence permits etc.

          I'd wager a dollar that if she could have stayed in Belgium she would have. I also wager a dollar that if she had not fallen pregnant she would have not applied for an MIQ spot and would have stayed overseas.

          • Koff

            The NZ government can't really influence the immigration rules of other countries. Bellis could have applied for a residence permit in Belgium which would have got her more than the normal 3 Schengen months. She could have also gone to Britain, which has a social security arrangement with NZ (reciprocal rights to medical treatment). But anyway the whole Bellis thing has been thoroughly thrashed out here and elsewhere. I think what Afghani women have angrily said about Bellis should have been given more exposure.

            • Sabine

              No, if she had already stayed that long, i doubt she would have gotten anywhere. And Kiwis don't actually get automatically visas either. I think that the Afghani women has an easy time to speak as she is no longer in Afghanistan. See how that changes the narrative? Could she have gone to England, yeah, right Tui. Suddenly Covid is ok to get when you are a pregnant women overseas and your government don't care about you? Right.

              Again, understand that not one Country in Europe is obliged in any way to take care financially, medically and with housing of stranded dudes and dudettes from NZ just because their government could not be bothered finding a different way to running MIQ, or finding a way to keep these guys overseas safe, housed, fed and with access to medical treatment while they keep the country locked.

              Again, your rights to safety here does not over ride the rights to safety of Kiwis that are stranded elsewhere. And the egg on the face of government is because someone in government decided that her case what not of an 'emergency' enough. Maybe get annoyed at some highly paid anonymous beige suit in government who despite a lot of education missed out on 'common sense 101' while in University. But then, just because someone spend a lot of money on education does not mean they a. learned something and b. understood something.

        • Jimmy

          Probably not if you have a negative test and are double vaxed and spend 10 days isolating and having tests on whatever days they now recommend.
          No one should be left state-less.

    • weka 9.3

      If ALL pregnant NZ citizens overseas were given direct access to MIQ the Government would have been criticised by the usually outraged for framing pregnancy as a medical abnormality. Considering that one of the main tenets of the 60s and 70s feminist movement was the desire to normalise pregnancy, no more of the sexist "little woman " and "in confinement " bullshit that was rife up until then. Governments are damned if they do and damned if they don't.

      Not really. It's not hard to understand pregnancy as a normal, healthy life event that sometimes goes wrong, and that when it goes wrong sometimes you need immediate access to good health care. The only way your scenario would happen is if the government wasn't competent as messaging.

      I still think they should have had a separate criteria list for pregnant women, because as I wrote in my post the one they're using was obviously written for men and non-pregnant women. Which doesn't mean giving all pregnant women priority, it just means doing an assessment based on physical reality.

  10. Ad 10

    Westport: build a wall or move to higher ground?

    Westport flood recovery: Build a wall or move to higher ground? |

    A few thousands ratepayers and a median income of $42,000.

    • arkie 10.1

      Civil Defence has ordered a partial compulsory evacuation of Westport after days of rain and more heavy falls expected tonight. (from RNZ)

      Right now I imagine there are more pressing concerns for those ratepayers.

    • The Al1en 10.2

      $3600 pa in rates and $6 per rubbish bag on top of that.

      My second flood in 6 months. Knew it wasn't as bad as last time so stayed put… So far.

      The town needs some strategic flood walls, to resume dredging the river (all but stopped when the cement works shut years ago), clearing up of the Orawaiti overflow channel and making some areas unsuitable for housing for good.

      I do like it here, but if I got offered the market value I had last week, or could have the same house on elevated land for the same price, I'd probably take it – Just as long as I didn't have to live next door to anyone like me lol

  11. Blazer 11

    the most ludicrous rationale I heard was….'it's downhill …most of the..way'!laugh

  12. Shanreagh 12

    Best quote I have heard about yesterday's decisions

    'We've moved from being a team of 5M to being 5M teams of 1"

  13. McFlock 13

    Was having coffee with a DHB colleague today. We were quietly speculating on the odds of the national party conference being a superspreader event, given their leader's insistence on wearing a mask with his nose hanging out.

    Once is an accident, but doing it repeatedly as a leader during a pandemic indicates he's whistling to the dogs.

    • DukeEll 13.1

      Was having a zoom call with a set of clients who specialise in rural recruitment on tuesday. They were taking bets on how long it would take before this government rolled back on MiQ with a bet multiplier on who would be sent out to polish this turd for the government.

      No one picked Ms Adern fronting for the good / bad news, but plenty had thursday as the day.

    • Graeme 13.2

      The town's waiting for it. Poll on Mountain Scene's homepage last week had about 90% expecting an outbreak in next week. (this week the anti mask market gets a similar no)

      Evidently the presence of, and behaviour of, the Nats was not appreciated by a lot of people around town too.

      • Shanreagh 13.2.1


        Good grief was non mask wearing, & I guess non distancing, that prevalent? How disgusting putting others at risk. I had not thought the Nats were that silly.

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    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s climate strategy ‘pamphlet’, its watering down of Clean Car Standards and its general lack of coherence;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Casey Costello strikes again
    Summary: A track record of deception is becoming evident in the Government’s Coalition alliance. Ministers across all parties have been found to either lie without contrite, and/or act unlawfully and unreasonably. The rails are coming off quicker than a marshmallow induced fantasy train ride as the conductors throw caution to ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #28 2024
    Open access notables Antarctic Bottom Water Warming, Freshening, and Contraction in the Eastern Bellingshausen Basin, Johnson et al., Geophysical Research Letters Cold winds blowing over polynyas (areas of ice-free water) on the Antarctic continental shelf create sea ice, forming very cold and somewhat salty, hence very dense, waters. These dense ...
    2 days ago
  • We're back! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashWe’re back after a three-week mid-winter break. I needed a rest, but back into it. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: National’s gas fantasy
    Yesterday the government released the advice on its proposal to repeal the offshore fossil gas exploration ban, including a Climate Implications of Policy Assessment statement, Cabinet paper, and Regulatory Impact Statement. I spent some time looking at these last night, and the short version is that the government's plan is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • A criminal minister
    RNZ reports that cancer minister Casey Costello has been reprimanded and forced to apologise by the Ombudsman for acting "contrary to law" in her handling of an OIA request: Associate Health Minister Casey Costello has been severely reprimanded by the Chief Ombudsman and forced to apologise for trying to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Luxon in the NATO pressure cooker
    New Zealand is one of six countries invited as onlookers to this week’s NATO summit in Washington. As such, PM Christopher Luxon will be made aware of the pressure on the 32 NATO member states (a) to increase their Defence spending (b) to become less militarily dependent on the US ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    3 days ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus for Thursday July 11
    TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so on the morning of July 11 are:Climate: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts issued the National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government’s climate strategy yesterday, including a three-page document with five bullet ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • By George! Splendid streets take shape down south
    The revitalisation of Auckland city centre, especially around Wynyard Quarter, Te Komititanga, and Queen Street, is top of mind for Greater Auckland readers – but other cities around Aotearoa New Zealandare installing people-friendly streets. This guest post by Jessica de Heij, who grew up in the Netherlands and is an ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    3 days ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 11
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:30 am on July 11 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister acted 'contrary to law’. Casey Costello has been severely reprimanded by the Chief Ombudsman and forced ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 11
    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:00 am on Thursday, July 11 are:Economy: Te Pūtea Matua The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) announced its Monetary Policy Committee decided to hold the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Farmers’ revenge meets Green resistance
    If there was one issue that united farmers in opposition to the Labour Government, it was the battle of the waterways between farmers and Environment Minister David Parker. Parker won the first round with his 2020 National Policy Standard on Freshwater Management (NPSFM) which imposed tough new standards on waterways ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • Personal Reflections: 10th July
    Please note: This is a personal reflection and does not refer to politics. These entries are not sent to subscribers.Text within this block will maintain its original spacing when publishedHubris and Pride Out of the fire and into the frying pan? Swimming with the big sharks Tonight, I am excited. ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Oh Vienna
    Nothing can warm your heart like the sight of your daughter stepping off a train. Mary-Margaret arrived on Saturday to ride with us to Vienna.You know your way around a bike? the guy at the hire shop asks her. Yep. She’s ridden them on rail trails, Auckland’s mean streets, commutes ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: New Zealand forges deeper ties with NATO
    Christopher Luxon is finding his foreign policy feet. Now eight months into the job, New Zealand’s Prime Minister is in Washington DC this week to attend the NATO summit. It is the third year in a row that Wellington has been invited to the annual gathering of the North Atlantic ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: National’s carbon capture fantasy
    As the climate crisis has grown worse, the tactics of the polluting industries have shifted. From denying climate change, they then moved on to pushing "carbon capture" - dumping their emissions underground rather than in the atmosphere. It's a PR scam, intended to prolong the life of the industry we ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Harsh Truths.
    The Way We Were: An indelible mark was left upon a whole generation of New Zealanders by the Great Depression and World War II; an impression that not only permitted men and women of all classes and races to perceive the need to work together for the common good, but also ...
    4 days ago
  • Explainer: Simeon Brown's CCUS Announcement
    Sources for the data and research:Peter Milne: Time’s up on Gorgon’s five years of carbon storage failureSimon Holmes a Court: "Does best CCS power station in world provide model for Australia?" Chris Vanderstock: "The truth about Carbon Capture and Storage"   "Sunk Costs": documenting CCS's failure to meet every, single, target, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • The Kiwirail Interislander saga continues
    This morning, 1 News is reporting that the cancellation of the i-Rex ferries has so far cost taxpayers $484 million.That's almost half a billion dollars. That could probably fund thousands of new doctors, maybe complete a few hospital rebuilds, or how about money for our experienced police so they don’t ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Bernard’s Chorus for Wednesday, July 10
    As foreshadowed in legislation passed quietly under urgency just before Christmas, the Transport Minister has personally watered down standards for car imports in a way expected to add millions of tonnes to our climate emissions Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Christopher Luxon's business acumen
    It’s April, and the relatively new Prime Minister of New Zealand is on his first overseas mission to South East Asia.Christopher Luxon walks into the room. A warm smile on his face. A hand extended to his counterpart.“We are open for business,” he says confidently. “New Zealand is under new ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Meet New Zealand's Russell Brand?
    Hi,There is an all too common story within the guru community, and we see it play out again and again. The end is nearly always the same — a trail of victims and confusion left in the guru’s wake.As seen in the recent case of Russell Brand, the guru simply ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 days ago
  • Why is the Government flooring it on unsafe speeds?
    Feedback closes midnight Thursday 11 July, on the draft speed-setting rule. See our previous post on the subject for details, and guidance on having your say. Among other things, it proposes to raise speeds in cities back up to a universal 50km/h (with no option of 30km/h), and will restrict safe ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • American Boy
    Take me on a trip, I'd like to go some dayTake me to New York, I'd love to see LAI really want to come kick it with youYou'll be my American boy…Love letters straight from the heart. Hmm, I think that’s a different tune, but that’s where we’ll begin. With ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 10
    Photo by Jannis Brandt on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am are:Investigation: Benefitting from the misery of others. Over 40% of emergency housing funding went to a concentrated group ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 10
    Photo by Mr Cup / Fabien Barral on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:30 am on Wednesday, July 10 are:Climate: Minister for Transport Simeon Brown announced changes to the Clean Car Importer Standard that ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • How rural families are saving thousands with electric vehicles
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Daisy Simmons (Photo credit: Automotive Rhythms / CC BY-NC 2.0) Some people thought Juliana Dockery and her husband Sean were being impractical when they bought an electric vehicle in 2022. Why? Like one in five Americans, they live in a rural area ...
    4 days ago
  • Love to complete it all
    Photo credit: Rob DickinsonThis is my wish for you: Comfort on difficult days, smiles when sadness intrudes, rainbows to follow the clouds, laughter to kiss your lips, sunsets to warm your heart, hugs when spirits sag, beauty for your eyes to see, friendships to brighten your being, faith so that ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: What’s left of the Emissions Reduction Plan?
    In 2019, Parliament, in a supposed bipartisan consensus, passed the Zero Carbon Act. The Act established long-term emissions reduction targets, and a cycle of five-yearly budgets and emissions reduction plans to meet them, with monitoring by the independent Climate Change Commission. In theory this was meant to ensure that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The President They Have Got.
    “This cannot be real life!” Confronted with the choice of recommitting themselves to the myth of Joe Biden, or believing the evidence of their own eyes, those Americans not already committed to Donald Trump will reach out instinctively for the President they wish they had – blind to the President they ...
    5 days ago
  • Has Progressivism Peaked?
    Let’s Go Crazy! AOC (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) rarks-up the voters of New York’s 16th Congressional District.HAVE WE MOVED past peak progressivism? Across the planet, there are signs that the surge of support for left-wing causes and personalities, exemplified by the election of the democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (AOC) to the US House ...
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Dawn Chorus for July 9
    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Labour may be looking at signing up for an Irish style 33% inheritance tax instead of or as well as a capital gains tax;Sam Stubbs has proposed the Government sell ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Mr Luxon goes to Washington.
    Once fastened servile now your getting sharpMoving oh so swiftly with such disarmI pulled the covers over him shoulda' pulled the alarmTurned to my nemesis a fool no fucking godTuesday morning usually provides something to write about with a regular round of interviews for the Prime Minister across Newshub, TVNZ, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Kiwirail at Councils Transport & Infrastructure Committee
    Last week at the Council’s Transport and Infrastructure Committee, Kiwirail gave an update about the state of the network and the work they’re doing to get it ready for the opening of the City Rail Link. There were a few aspects that stood out to me so I’ve pulled them ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    5 days ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 9
    Photo by City Church Christchurch on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six links elsewhere I’ve spotted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 8:00 am are:Scoop: Waipareira Trust political donations probe referred to Charities Registration Board NZ Herald-$$$’s Matt NippertScoop: Migrant whistleblowers speak out after ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • What’s next after Supreme Court curbs regulatory power: More focus on laws’ wording, less on the...
    This article by Robin Kundis Craig, Professor of Law, University of Kansas is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article. Federal Chevron deference is dead. On June 28, 2024, in a 6-3 vote, the Supreme Court overturned the 40-year-old legal tenet that when a federal ...
    5 days ago
  • The folly of retreat in the face of defeat
    Note: This is a long readPolitical discourse on social media taught me that bad faith operators and tactics are not only prevalent, they are widespread and effective.Thanks for reading Mountain Tui! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.Their objectives are much narrower than one might imagine.The ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • The Parent Zone
    Hi,I am about to wing my way back to New Zealand for the Webworm popup this Saturday in Auckland — can’t wait to see some of you there! In the meantime, I highly recommend the latest pet thread over on the Webworm app. All I’ll say is that readers here ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Tuesday: The Kākā’s Journal of Record for July 9
    Photo by Alex Zaj on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, news conferences reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 9 are:Politics: Full news conference: 'Please resign', Chloe Swarbrick tells Darleen Tana RNZ VideoPaper: Increasing speed ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Breaking up is so hard to do
    The fundamental weakness of the waka jumping legislation is once again on display, as the Greens seem reluctant to trigger it to remove Darleen Tana from Parliament altogether. Tana has been suspended from the Greens Caucus while it had barrister Rachel Burt investigate allegations that she had been involved in ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the privatising of state housing provision, by stealth
    Kāinga Ora’s “independent review” was carried out by the same National Party leader whose own administration’s inadequate housing build – and selling of state houses- had caused Kāinga Ora to embark on its crash building programme in the first place. To use a rugby analogy, this situation is exactly like ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • “Laser focused on the cost of living crisis”
    Cartoonist credit: Christopher Slane ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the elections in France, Iran and Britain
    As Werewolf predicted a week ago, it was premature to call Emmanuel Macron’s snap election call “a bitter failure” and “a humiliating defeat” purely on the basis of the first round results. In fact, it is the far-right that has suffered a crushing defeat. It has come in third in ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • The UK needs proportional representation
    Like a lot of people, I spent Friday watching the UK election. There's the obvious joy at seeing the end of 14 years of Tory chaos, but at the same time the new government does not greatly enthuse me. In order to win over the establishment, Starmer has moved UK ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Bernard's Chorus for Monday, July 8
    TL;DR: Thanks for the break, and now I’m back. These are the top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so:Chris Bishop’s pledge to ‘flood the market’ with land to build new houses both out and up remains dependent ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • French Left Wins Big
    Usually I start with some lyrics from the song at the end of the newsletter, to set the mood. But today I’m going to begin with a bit of a plea. About six weeks ago I decided to make more of my writing public with the hope that people would ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Satire: It's great our Prime Minister is so on the ball
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • This is the real reason David Seymour needs to reinterpret the Treaty of Waitangi
    This is republished from an earlier write upDavid Seymour is part of the ACT Party. He's backed by people like Alan Gibbs, and Koch money. He grew up as a right wing lobbyist - tick tick tick. All cool and fine - we know.What's also been clear is a fervent ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Going for Housing Growth: Filling the housing donut?
    Hot take: it should be affordable to live in Auckland. You may not be surprised to learn I’m not the only one with this hot take. Indeed, the Minister of Housing recently took the notable step of saying house prices should come down, something common wisdom says should be a politically ...
    Greater AucklandBy Scott Caldwell
    6 days ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Monday July 9
    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Monday, July 9, the top six links elsewhere I’ve spotted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so are:Scoop: Probation officer sacked for snooping is linked to alleged spy Jian Yang. Corrections dismissed Xu Shan over his ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • What has the Government done for you so far?
    List effective 1 July 2024Consumer and household (note: road and car costs are under infrastructure)Cancelled half-price public transport fares for under-25s and free fares for under-13s funding, scrapping the Labour government-era subsidies. The change will not affect pre-existing discounts funded directly by councils.Cut funding for free budgeting services. One third of the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 8
    Photo by Amador Loureiro on UnsplashTL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Monday, July 8, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last three days were:Local Government Minister Simeon Brown announced the Coalition Government would not be responding to ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s diary for the week to July 15 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to July 15 include:PM Christopher Luxon is travelling to Washington this week to attend a NATO meeting running from Tuesday to Thursday. Parliament is not sitting this week.The RBNZ is expected to hold the OCR on ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27
    A listing of 31 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 30, 2024 thru Sat, July 6, 2024. Story of the week Our Story of the Week is brought to us by Dr. Ella Gilbert, a researcher with the British ...
    6 days ago
  • The Great Splintering: Thoughts on the British Election
    I can remember 1997. Even living on the other side of the world, having a Scottish father and Welsh grandfather meant I acquired a childhood knowledge of British politics via family connections (and general geekery). And yes, I inherited the dark legends of that evil folk-devil, Margaret Thatcher. So when ...
    6 days ago
  • 2% royalties for mining? Deal!
    Snapshot postToday, Shane Jones was courageous enough to front Q&A with Jack Tame. Thanks for reading Mountain Tui ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.Jack Tame is a bit of a legend. And that’s only because he strikes me as a good journalist i.e. well ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Aotearoa Says – No Diggity.
    Strictly biz, don't play aroundCover much ground, got game by the poundGetting paid is a forteEach and every day, true player wayOne month ago tens of thousands of Kiwis took to the streets to protest against the coalition’s Fast Track legislation. Concerned that it would prioritise some people making a ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Strangers and others
    For a moment yesterday I thought I might have been trailing my old friend Simon Wilson across the Danube, over cobbled stones, and into the old town square of Linz. Same comfortable riding style, same jacket, same full head of hair, but no, different friend of cycling.There is a kindred ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Killing the Golden Goose of New Zealand's economy
    IntroductionIn New Zealand, the National party generally retains a reputation of being pro-business and pro-economy.Thanks for reading Mountain Tui ! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.The underlying assumption is National are more competent economic managers, and by all accounts Luxon and his team have talked ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • Newshub Signs Off
    Wait for the night, for the light at the end of an era'Cause it's love at the end of an eraThe last episode of Newshub, the final instalment of TV3 News, aired last night. Many of us who took the time to watch felt sad and nostalgic looking back over ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago

  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    16 hours ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    2 days ago
  • District Court judges appointed
    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
    2 days ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins
    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
    2 days ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended
    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
    2 days ago
  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance
    New compliance funding in Budget 2024 will ensure Inland Revenue is better equipped to catch individuals who are evading their tax obligations, Revenue Minister Simon Watts says. “New Zealand’s tax debt had risen to almost $7.4 billion by the end of May, an increase of more than 50 per cent since 2022. ...
    2 days ago
  • Taking action to reduce road cones
    The Coalition Government is taking action to reduce expenditure on road cones and temporary traffic management (TTM) while maintaining the safety of workers and road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  Rolling out a new risk-based approach to TTM that will reduce the number of road cones on our roads.  ...
    2 days ago
  • Celebrating 100 years of progress
    Te Arawa Lakes Trust centenary celebrations mark a significant milestone for all the important work done for the lakes, the iwi and for the Bay of Plenty region, says Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka. The minister spoke at a commemorative event acknowledging 100 years ...
    2 days ago
  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week.    “New Zealand enjoys warm and enduring relationships with both Korea and Japan. Our relationships with these crucial partners is important for New Zealand’s ongoing prosperity and security,” says Mr Peters.    While in the ...
    3 days ago
  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says today is another important step towards establishing charter schools, with the application process officially opening.  “There has already been significant interest from groups and individuals interested in opening new charter schools or converting existing state schools to charter schools,” says Mr Seymour. “There is ...
    3 days ago
  • Decreasing gas reserves data highlights need to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
    MBIE’s annual Petroleum Reserves report detailing a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural gas reserves shows the need to reverse the oil and gas exploration ban, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says.“Figures released by MBIE show that there has been a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural ...
    3 days ago
  • Providers of military assistance to Russia targeted in new sanctions
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further sanctions as part of the Government’s ongoing response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.    “Russia’s continued illegal war of aggression against Ukraine is a direct and shocking assault on the rules-based order. Our latest round of sanctions targets Russians involved in that ...
    3 days ago
  • OECD report shows New Zealand is a red tape state
    Minister for Regulation David Seymour says that the OECD Product Market Regulation Indicators (PMRI) released this morning shows why New Zealanders sorely need regulatory reform. “This shocker result should end any and all doubt that the Government must go to war on red tape and regulation,” says Mr Seymour.  “The ...
    3 days ago
  • Government unveils five-point climate strategy
    The coalition Government is proud to announce the launch of its Climate Strategy, a comprehensive and ambitious plan aimed at reducing the impacts of climate change and preparing for its future effects, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “The Strategy is built on five core pillars and underscores the Government’s ...
    4 days ago
  • National Bowel Screening Programme reaches 2 million life-saving screening kits
    The National Bowel Screening Programme has reached a significant milestone, with two million home bowel screening kits distributed across the country, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti announced today.   “This programme, which began in 2017, has detected 2,495 cancers as of June 2024. A third of these were at an early ...
    4 days ago
  • Granny flats popular with all ages
    More than 1,300 people have submitted on the recent proposal to make it easier to build granny flats, RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop and Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk say. “The strong response shows how popular the proposal is and how hungry the public is for common sense changes to make ...
    4 days ago
  • $25 million boost for conservation
    Toitū te taiao – our environment endures!  New Zealanders will get to enjoy more of our country’s natural beauty including at Cathedral Cove – Mautohe thanks to a $25 million boost for conservation, Conservation Minister Tama Potaka announced today.  “Te taiao (our environment) is critical for the country’s present and ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand increases support for Ukraine
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Foreign Minister Winston Peters have announced a further $16 million of support for Ukraine, as it defends itself against Russia’s illegal invasion. The announcement of further support for Ukraine comes as Prime Minister Luxon attends the NATO Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC. “New Zealand will provide an additional ...
    4 days ago
  • Country Kindy to remain open
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says that Country Kindy in Manawatu will be able to remain open, after being granted a stay from the Ministry of Education for 12 weeks. “When I heard of the decision made last week to shut down Country Kindy I was immediately concerned and asked ...
    4 days ago
  • Government lifts Indonesian trade cooperation
    New export arrangements signed today by New Zealand and Indonesia will boost two-way trade, Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says. Mr McClay and Dr Sahat Manaor Panggabean, Chairman of the Indonesia Quarantine Authority (IQA), signed an updated cooperation arrangement between New Zealand and Indonesia in Auckland today. “The cooperation arrangement paves the way for New Zealand and Indonesia to boost our $3 billion two-way trade and further ...
    4 days ago
  • Carbon capture framework to reduce emissions
    A Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) framework has been released by the Coalition Government for consultation, providing an opportunity for industry to reduce net CO2 emissions from gas use and production, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says. “Our Government is committed to reducing red tape and removing barriers to drive investment ...
    5 days ago
  • Faster consenting with remote inspections
    The Government is progressing a requirement for building consent authorities to use remote inspections as the default approach so building a home is easier and cheaper, Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk says. “Building anything in New Zealand is too expensive and takes too long. Building costs have increased by ...
    5 days ago
  • Revision programme presented to Parliament
    A new revision programme enabling the Government to continue the progressive revision of Acts in New Zealand has been presented to Parliament, Attorney-General Judith Collins announced today. “Revision targets our older and outdated or much-amended Acts to make them more accessible and readable without changing their substance,” Ms Collins says. ...
    5 days ago
  • Government aligns Clean Car Importer Standard with Australia to reduce vehicle prices for Kiwis
    The Government will be aligning the Clean Car Importer Standard with Australia in order to provide the vehicle import market with certainty and ease cost of living pressures on Kiwis the next time they need to purchase a vehicle, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“The Government supports the Clean Car Importer ...
    5 days ago
  • NZQA Board appointments
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  • More support for Wairoa clean-up
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  • Minister thanks outgoing Secretary for Education
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  • Minister concludes local government review
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  • Consultation begins on new cancer medicines
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  • 50 years on, Niue and NZ look to the future
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  • Roads of National Significance moving at pace
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  • New school for Flat Bush
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  • Dr Shane Reti's speech to Iwi-Maori Partnership Boards, Rotorua
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  • Announcement of Mental Health Targets and Mental Health and Addiction Community Sector Innovation Fu...
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  • Expert panel appointed to review Public Works Act
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  • Resources Minister heads to Australia with message – ‘NZ is open for business’
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  • Prime Minister’s scholarships awarded
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  • Next steps for Northwest Rapid Transit underway
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  • Targets will drive improvement in mental health
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    1 week ago

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