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Open Mike 05/05/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, May 5th, 2018 - 125 comments
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125 comments on “Open Mike 05/05/2018”

  1. Ed 1

    New Zealand wakes up to the noise of the wholesale slaughter of ducks.

    • James 1.1

      You do know that it’s the best way to get free range duck for the table.


      • trey 1.1.1

        And then James there are all the birds maimed and left to die slow painful deaths by this “sport” as shooting results in high rates of wounding and crippling.
        I take some of these maimed birds from bird rescue and rehome them on my pond and wetlands but most don’t survive.
        We currently have 5 swans, 3 with a wing missing and two with a leg missing as well as 7 maimed ducks that will never fly again.
        It is heart breaking to watch a swan or duck flapping one wing, not being able to fly .
        So ask yourself is the harm caused worth it.
        Hope you enjoyed winding Ed up this morning.


        • James

          Indeed some will be wounded. It the majority are killed and eaten.

          It is nice to have people like you looking after those that you can.

          Regardless it is something that a lot of people enjoy – it gets the duck numbers down (they are a real pain around here) and it puts delicious meat in the freezer.

          Some people will always find any kind of killing of animals unacceptable – others don’t have an issue with it (and always try to ensure little to no suffering- I have posed before the lengths we go to with our homekill to look after it).

          For the record – whilst I have no issue with duck shooting. I don’t partake – simply because there are too many people out there who shoot once a year and don’t take adequate safety precautions and end up shooting someone.

          Luckily I have friends who are kind enough to drop a few around – and duck freezes well so you don’t have waste.

          • mauī

            Yeah ducks can be a real pain there’s that extra chance of soiling one’s boat shoes on the way to the marina boardwalk.

            • bwaghorn

              there are a lot of wet lands fenced off mainly because of some peoples love of shooting ducks ,

    • mary_a 1.2

      Agree with you Ed (1).

      Absolutely sickening that this barbaric activity is considered sport! Worse still, it’s acceptable! I was out walking this morning and heard gunshots. Vile!

      We live on an inlet from a lake and this morning, lots of ducks of various species have gathered, obviously for their own protection.

  2. Sanctuary 2

    Happy 200th birthday Karl Marx!

    The bad news is communism hasn’t quite taken off like you hoped it would; the good news is the capitalist running dogs are still busily booking their inevitable appointments with the firing squad!

    • tracey 2.1

      Was he a proponent on Communism?

    • millsy 2.2

      The problem was is that power hungry maniacs got too impatient and wanted to impose it at the point of a gun. Lenin knew that it would take several decades to implement, which is why the New Economic Plan was developed. Moderates in China, such as Deng Xiaoping and Chao En-Lai also favoured a gradual approach, but we’re overruled by Mao.

      • solkta 2.2.1

        The problem was that a dictatorship is a dictatorship irrespective of its supposed class base. The concept of the Dictatorship of the Proletarian was in fact Marx’ great brain fart.

    • solkta 2.3

      The good news is that he remains till this day the greatest mind to have ever studied human society.

    • McFlock 2.4

      He nailed in minute detail exactly what was wrong with capitalism.

      The use of the thesis/antithesis/synthesis as a way to figure out how the problems would be solved was a bit bonkers, though.

  3. Ad 3

    This is a really good longish article about how the west Auckland licensing Trusts treat their thousands of workers.


    Here in Auckland’s west we have been told for decades about how the Trusts make us special, and that this monopoly is in the end worth it for all the benefits that it brings.

    Now we see the reality of their commitment to the Living Wage despite it being Chaired by Ross Clow, who is a Labour Councillor on Auckland Council as well.

    Between the Trusts management and their politicians, they have a lot to answer for when their governors are Labour-dominated, and those same people are elected to Council as well.

    Would be very keen to her of any E Tu members who are aware of the activities mentioned in the article.

    • Zorb6 3.1

      Has been an absolute gravy train for the old boy network out west for decades.Even running a virtual monopoly, they struggle to make a good R.O.I.
      Spend millions telling ratepayers how they benefit the community,without highlighting the fact that most funds for charities come via poker machines.
      Quite surprised that Clow’s salary has been revealed.
      Remuneration to management has always been a closely guarded secret.

      • Sanctuary 3.1.1

        I live out west, and as a bit of a counter-point I have to say that general public order is noticeably better here than where I previously lived in Sandringham, something I put down largely to the much greater control on the supply of liquor out West that the trust has.

        • Sacha

          It’s less troubled because places like Glen Eden and Te Atatu are not nightlife destinations. 🙂

    • millsy 3.2

      It doesn’t look like the licencing trusts are doing a very good job of justifying their existence.

    • savenz 3.3

      Interesting perspective and unfortunately probably typical of how hospitality staff.

      Anyone who thinks you are going to get reliable workers in Auckland and increasingly many parts of NZ on close to minimum wages is dreaming because it would be near impossible to survive on it.

      I’d say the standard of hospitality has been going down in NZ over the last decade, that is because they have refused to upgrade to a higher service level, mostly based on the Kiwi ‘low wage’ cut cost at worker levels and the reliance of exploiting migrant workers to keep staff at unliveable wages. The sooner they put minimum wages up to $20p/h the better. For a start it would lower the WFF and other top ups and emergency food parcels, people need to survive as increasingly employers such as these with $14m in the bank are only going to raise wages if they have to. Yep no doubt we will be inundated with crocodile tears, wah, wah, when they have to pay that extra, but the majority can afford it.

      I think the idea of the trust to run liquor is a good one, but it sounds like the usual – it’s turned into a little cash cow that has become about maximising profits to themselves and not sharing it to all workers and the community. It’s conditions of the trusts operations that should change, not the concept.

      • solkta 3.3.1

        But if the minimum wage was raised that much without WFF being adjusted then a lot of families would be no better off.

        • greywarshark

          Raising to a living wage would be a wake-up call to the moneyed, a first step for the government to enable people to receive a living wage.
          It would not solve problems straight away but there is a journey of a thousand steps to traverse here. And uphill all the way because of the long-term latitude to business and the disgraceful way that NZ has been turned into a poverty- ridden copy-cat third-world economy.

          • solkta

            Hey, I’m all in favour of raising the minimum wage. What i was objecting to was savenz suggesting that this was a way to effectively cutting WFF. Children are a public as well as a private good. From a left wing perspective, those who choose not to have children or have high incomes should help pay for the costs of raising the next generation.

    • phantom snowflake 3.4

      Great to see Chloe Ann-King’s writing promoted here. She’s an absolute champion as far as advocacy for hospitality workers, the precariously employed and beneficiaries is concerned, and her activism spreads into other areas also. This piece of hers from 2016 is timely:

  4. Observer Tokoroa 5

    Ducking for cover

    I notice that during the murder and slaughter of living creatures known as Ducks Season – that no protection is provided for these animals. An animal being roughly 99% human.

    The dirty murderers are equipped with all manner of sissy protection but not the other living animals.

    Ducks being Living Creatures and 99% human, have as much right to life as any sissy coward with a gun.

    I therefore propose that armed drones equipped with Russian Fire Arms (NZ guns are not reliable) fire down on the humans who are doing the slaughtering. The drones equipped with infrared will operate from 32,000 ft.

    Having been slaughtered by the drones, – the humans should then be skinned and sent home to their families and with a tag on their cowardly ears. The tag would say “Eat this!” Sissy.

    • James 5.1

      I would say that’s one of your more rational post.

      Ducks might be 99% like you or people you know – but I think most people would agree there is quite a difference.

      Yeah and I know that most creatures share a high %age of DNA.

    • ropata 5.2

      My ancestors didn’t fight, scratch and claw their way to the top of the food chain just to eat veggies. We are apex predators

    • tracey 5.3

      I live near a protected wetlands. In the last week the duck numbers have swelled. Enormously.

    • Antoine 5.4


      You are a traitor to your own species!


    • solkta 5.5

      Do you have other suggestions about how the duck population could be controlled? Should we introduce a predator? If we did, would this predator kill them in a more humane way?

      • Draco T Bastard 5.5.1

        Does the duck population need to be controlled?

        • In Vino

          Avian botulism has actually reduced by a little the numbers on Hamilton Lake compared the 1970s, but by and large ducks breed too quickly. And a serious predator would probably enjoy (just for a change in menu) a few of our endangered species as well.
          So maybe it is a good thing that we have a number of humans stupid enough to see as ‘Man against Nature’ a contest between one of the less intelligent bird species and themselves – less intelligent humans using weapons they themselves did not invent, to prove something to their tender egos.

          • Draco T Bastard

            but by and large ducks breed too quickly.

            Ok. Now, is it actually the hunting that’s keeping the numbers down?

    • greywarshark 5.6

      I think you are being satirical, ironic, and amusing yourself today. I have the feeling that if not a duck hunter, some of your best friends are. Quack, quack. You have just decided to shoot off your mouth at home and let the others sit in their mai mai in the wet and by the way they can dress, or undress rather, the duck they give to you.

    • millsy 5.7

      With modern technology, there is no need for people to take a single animal’s life for sport. Having a laser gun that would use a computer to register a ‘hit’ would enable hunters to enjoy their hobby in a human manner.

      • James 5.7.1

        Thanks for telling us how other people can enjoy themselves in a manner that suits you.

  5. Ed 6

    Co2 levels over 410mm.
    And we prevaricate to close down the fossil fuel industry.

  6. James 7


    Way to stand up coromandel. Like Taupo they need a rescue helicopter. Not having one in these regions will cost lives (even if they are 99% duck)

    • millsy 7.1

      It was National that kicked off these proposals. Anyway, a bit silly to have charities running these helicopters anyway. Rescue helicopters should really be run as part of the Air Force or Navy.

      • james 7.1.1

        If it was National that started this – I would still be against it.

        and I agree with the Air Force or Navy running them – same with coastguard.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.1.2

        Civil Defence would probably be the better option.

        • Macro

          No – it is an ambulance service so it should be run by a Nation wide ambulance service.

          • Draco T Bastard

            But one with a fairly limited demand and Civil defence needs heli’s available for other emergencies.

            Airforce and army should have dedicated medical heli’s as well so areas around those bases won’t need civilian craft for it.

            It’s a case of getting the most use out of them while also having them available when needed.

            • Macro

              I live in Thames and we have the Westpac chopper in almost on a daily basis. The local ambulance here is also in constant demand.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Which has nothing do to with who’s operating it.

                • McFlock

                  It sort of does.

                  You’re not talking one or two choppers that have stretchers instead of seats. They’re dedicated machines. To keep one 24/d operational you need two or three actual aircraft (ISTR Southern has three). And they can’t be transferred to other duties or deployed overseas, because we need them here.

                  So a national organisation might be a good idea, but it needs to be separate to other services, otherwise its resources would be leeched to other dutires under the next tory government.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      Probably part of the funding cuts that National did to health.

      Hopefully, this government will do something about it. We most definitely should not have private company advertising on government services.

    • Macro 7.3

      It certainly will. My grandson was born in Thames a few years back. Unknown to the midwife at the time was the fact that he had transposed major arteries. ie his aorta and pulmonary were transposed. After a perfectly normal birth he began turning blue. He had to be flown to Waikato Base Hospital where the condition was diagonsed and then flown to Starship where a tube was run up into his heart and a small hole made between the two top ventricles so that his blood could become oxygenated. Four days later the surgeons were able to perform open heart surgery and correct the problem.* He is now a strong young lad and very active.
      Had there been no air ambulance he would not have survived.

      *I understand that this operation is carried out around 4 – 5 times per week at Starship. 30 years ago he would not be alive.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.4

      this is interesting:

      He also said the Coromandel Rescue Helicopter was important for places like Great Barrier Island.

      “Whitianga is the closest base to Great Barrier.

      “It’s all about time.”

      Which it is. Auckland to Gt Barrier is 25 minutes. All I can find for Whitianga to Gt Barrier indicates that it’s about the same or perhaps longer. So, no time benefit there and thus not a selling point.

      The permanent base for the Coromandel Rescue Helicopter was funded entirely by the community, he said.

      So? Just because the community funds the heli base doesn’t mean that it’s the best option.

      He said he could not figure out how removing the rescue helicopter from the area would give them a better service.

      That’s actually quite easy to do. Choose your spot and compare flight times as I did above which indicates that Auckland based helicopter service is better for Gt Barrier than a Whitianga based service.

      Petition creator Simon O’Neill said it was “necessary to get a bigger movement going that the ministry will have to pay attention to rather than fobbing off small attempts”.

      This is something that needs to be done by logistics and not by movements and feelings.

      One woman who had used the Coromandel Rescue Helicopter, Jo Burton, said for her, its use “was essential” for getting her to Waikato Hospital.

      In January 2015, Burton put her hand through the glass of a window. She required repairs to five tendons and her superficial radial nerve.

      “They knew to get me to Waikato Hospital as soon as possible because of the damage.”

      She said she has full use of her hand now, but “if I’d been any longer I might not have full use”.

      Actually, a couple of days would have been fine.

      • JohnSelway 7.4.1

        I’m sure webmd knows better about the woman’s injuries that she or the hospital does.

        Next time I’m bleeding from an injury I’ll be sure to check with you before calling an ambulance.

        (What I’m trying to say is you don’t know shit about what kind of care she needed)

        • Draco T Bastard

          Weren’t you doing me the favour of ignoring me? I’m certainly ignoring you.

          And what the medics are saying is that tendon repair can be left for 24 to 48 hours so time wasn’t an issue.

          BTW, I had the same injury.

          • JohnSelway

            I told you to ignore me if you wanted, I need do no such thing.

            But yeah – you don’t shit about the situation about from a brief news synopsis, you’re personal experience doesn’t mean shit either so you are in no position to say it would have been fine when the patient, who was actually there, and the hospital, who looked after injury, say different

          • McFlock

            What the interwebz says. What does it say about nerve damage? Was there maybe something else not mentioned in the report that cumulatively might have cause actual doctors to say something like that?

            A bit like comparing fixed wing flight times from an aerodrome to a dedicated helipad, but whatevs

            • Draco T Bastard

              What does it say about nerve damage?

              My bad. I should have looked at that. It seems that some new process has come out in the last few years that helps with the nerve regeneration speed reducing it from months to weeks that’s time dependent.

          • JohnSelway

            “BTW – I had the same injury”

            Here’s how stupid that is. I suffer pancreatitis and have required hospitalization 3 times (alcoholism is a bitch). My dad also suffers pancreatitis but has never been hospitalized.

            We both have the same injury but have very different medical needs. Hope this helps

  7. tracey 8

    I see Farrar claims he banned some commentators over the PMs partner rumour but the journalist scanned his site and found alit left up. Farrar then said with 2 million comments he cant get to them all.

    1 it is not 2 million comments a day

    2 you decided to run a blog

    3 after DP you committed to cleaning up your blog

    So suspended some but not enough to stop the rumour getting good, long, airing.

    Hard to avoid the notion that Farrar tried to tell a porky and a journo investigated rather than just take him at his word. Oops.


    • Bearded Git 8.1

      Farrar deleted the thread only after Stuff contacted him…not good enough….he really shouldn’t be allowed back on The Panel after this…Jim Mora take note.

      • OnceWasTim 8.1.1

        Don’t hold your breath @BG. Jim is too busy rehearsing his lines for Monday to ensure he’s able to keep sitting on the fence and remain NZ’s nicest ‘radio bloke’ (going forward).
        Of course it’s possible he’ll fuck up and need a locum to fill in – and there’s one or two who’re only too happy to oblige. And generally, they’re a fucking sight easier to listen to when you’re trapped in a lift or on one of the remotest places on Earth craving a bit of western MSM for a bit of a laugh and a Subway roll

  8. Observer Tokoroa 9

    @ Ropata

    Nice to see You. Your ancestors and mine ate according to need and season. Harvested accordingly.

    We now have to rid ourselves of those ugly poisonous fungi, called capitalists; called wealthy; called abominable, money afflicted; ruthless; unredemptive and endlessly brutal. Poison is as poison does Ropata.

    We will get helicopters when the capitalists are drowned and droned out.

  9. James 10

    “We now have to rid ourselves of those ugly poisonous fungi, called capitalists; called wealthy; called abominable, money afflicted; ruthless; unredemptive and endlessly brutal”

    And how do you intend to do that ?

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1


      Which is why we have Representative Democracy actually. The rich were afraid that the rest of us would legislate them out of existence and it was the rich calling the shots at the time.

      Thing is, we can now probably start to implement full Participatory Democracy which really wasn’t possible 400 years ago.

    • ropata 10.2

      Marx taught that the revolution would only come when the oppression of the masses became unbearable. Guillotines worked OK in the past. But I prefer the way of peace. On an individual level we make the world a better place in our own way, Ardern suggests Kindness, and I’m happy to go along with that

  10. Jenny 11

    I notice that a lot of mention is made of Palestinians directed at me, accusing me of not being interested in the terrible suffering of the Palestinian people at the hands of the Israeli Zionists.

    But usually only in relation to my posts on the situation in Syria, and in my opinion only as a diversionary tactic.

    Prove me wrong.

    To all those people who make these accusations, I challenge you to front up today at the rally in Aotea Square at 2pm in support of the ‘March of Return’.

    The ‘Right of Return’ is a right written into international law by UN, for all refugees. But it is a right that is steadfastly denied to the Palestinians by the Zionists, an illegal position in defiance of international law, which the Zionists enforce with state sanctioned racist violence and apartheid like segregation and pass laws.

    Rally in support of The Great March of Return – Gaza

    May 5 · 2pm · Aotea Square · Auckland, New Zealand

    • Cinny 11.1

      Teleport please.

      Thinking of all who are able to go and show their support, with you in spirit.

    • Bill 11.2

      I notice that a lot of mention is made of Palestinians directed at me, accusing me of not being interested in the terrible suffering of the Palestinian people at the hands of the Israeli Zionists.

      Really? On this blog? Because I’m pretty sure that would have jumped out at me, and I haven’t noticed anything along those lines. I just did a quick search too. And nothing.

      Maybe you could link to the comments that have laid these accusations at your feet Jenny? I suspect this just yet another piece of vacuous nonsense on your part along the same lines as that previous ‘They’ve called me a head-chopper’ accusation that you threw out there.

      Hope the rally’s well attended and productive by the way.

      • Jenny 11.2.1

        I notice that a lot of mention is made of Palestinians directed at me, accusing me of not being interested in the terrible suffering of the Palestinian people at the hands of the Israeli Zionists.


        Really? On this blog? Because I’m pretty sure that would have jumped out at me, and I haven’t noticed anything along those lines. I just did a quick search too. And nothing.


        I think it was Fransesca or someone, But Bill, in the same vein, weren’t you the one giving support to Ed about me not caring about what is happening to the people of Yemen and Afrin and other such Whataboutery?

        In my opinion, you and Ed are only feigning concern for these terrible crimes against humanity committed by the Saudis, Zionists, the US etc. to divert attention away from your support and covering for mass murder committed by the Assad regime.


        Hope the rally’s well attended and productive by the way.


        You would know if you had attended Bill. And no it was not well attended, Maybe you would like to show your concern by giving the next rally a headline post. The next rally in support of the ‘March of Return’ will be held on the 19th, same time, same place. Visiting Palestinian scholar and activist Ramzy Baroud will be addressing this rally, prior to the talk he will be giving at the Freeman’s Bay Community Centre the following day. Maybe you would like to give this event a headline post as well. Or maybe not. In which, case do not ever again accuse me of not being concerned about these other cases of injustice and persecution in the world, to divert attention away from your support and propagandising for Syrian fascism and genocide.


        [The game a bogey Jenny. If in the future you submit comments that are baseless accusations that constitute attacks other contributors, bans will result] – Bill

        • Bill

          For the sake of drawing your attention to the above Jenny.

          • Jenny

            Hi Bill,

            I look forward to your post in support of Ramzy Baroud’s New Zealand speaking tour. Especially in light of your good wishes for the rally in support of the ‘March of Return’ last Saturday, because there is another one planned for the 19th same time same place at which Ramzy Baroud will be making an address.


            Cheers Jenny

            AUCKLAND: FRIDAY 18 MAY
            9:35am: Listen to 95bFM radio for Mikey Havoc’s live studio interview with Ramzy Baroud

            10:30am book signing event at UBIQ Auckland University Bookshop, 2 Alfred Street, Student Commons (off Princes Street, City.)

            Ramzy will speak at the Nakba Rally,

            2pm Aotea Square, Queen St, CBD.

            AUCKLAND: SUNDAY 20 MAY
            Free public talk: 7pm Sunday 20 May

            Freemans Bay Community Hall,

            52 Hepburn St, Auckland.

            HAMILTON: MONDAY 21 MAY
            Free public talk: 7pm Monday 21 May

            Wintec, Room A2.05, City Campus, Hamilton.

            Access via Gate 3 or Gate 2 on Tristram Street. Free parking.


            Book signing 22 May from 12pm to 1pm

            The Last Earth: A Palestinian Story

            Vic Books

            Easterfield Building,

            1 Kelburn Parade,

            Wellington 6012

            0800 370 370

            Evening event: 6pm Tuesday 22 May

            Free Public talk

            St Andrews on the Terrace,

            30 The Terrace,

            Wellington City 6011.

            Free public talk: 7pm Wednesday 23 May

            Christchurch Cardboard Cathedral,

            234 Hereford St,

            Christchurch 8011

            DUNEDIN: THURSDAY 24 MAY
            Free public talk: 5:15pm Thursday 24 May

            Burns 2 Lecture theatre,

            Ground Floor Arts Building,

            Albany Street,

            University of Otago.

  11. cleangreen 12


    We could be reaching the end of the relatively cheap oil era. Prices of Brent Crude, the global benchmark have been rising for the past seven months, and are tipped by most observers to continue to remain at high levels through 2019. Alarmists are talking of $80-100 a barrel.

    Peak oil now again?

    Bring back rail.

    Rail uses only one fifth the fuel per tonne carried per KM of road transport.

    Rail saves us all from climate change.

    And road deaths.

    Lower rapidly rising cost of road maintenance.

    Less trucks in our cities will make public health and air quality better.

    Whats not to like about that?

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      Rail uses only one fifth the fuel per tonne carried per KM of road transport.

      And, if electrified, doesn’t even use that.

      Getting all the traffic off our roads will do wonders for us. More cycling and walking will (apparently) make us all younger.

  12. Cinny 13

    Just listened to the Northcote candidates on The Nation.

    This bit was a wtf, loololollllz moment for me…..

    The national party candidate says something like… “it’s not about national it’s about who is the best person to serve the electorate” crikey…. he’s a party faithful bahahahahahahahahaha. Back your organisation dude, or stand as an independent.

    The nat candidate was also quick to shut down any mention of coleman.

    My thoughts…. Northcote will change colours.

    • Incognito 13.1

      A potential waka-jumper?

    • veutoviper 13.2

      I take it that it was just the National Party and Labour Party candidates, Cinny?

      ACT and NZF have both announced they won’t be running a candidate.

      The Green Party have said that they will be running a candidate but do not yet appear to have selected and announced their candidate although the by-election is only 5 weeks away.

      Although this is intended to emphasize that the Greens and Labour are not joined at the hip rather than win the electorate, this is likely to split the left vote and destroy any change of the electorate changing colours.

  13. greywarshark 14

    Chris Trotter in The Daily Blog on Friday on Trump. He gains oxygen from all the hullabaloo is I think Chris’s point.

    And when you read through Chris’s collection of groupings behind the yellow-fellow one sees that there is a mighty mountain of unreason to surmount. Same here on a smaller scale.

    …It doesn’t matter that Trump’s electoral base is composed of racists, homophobes, misogynists, fundamentalist Christians, Islamophobes and out-and-out fascists; as well as hard-line neoliberals, climate-change sceptics, union-busters, flat-taxers, economic nationalists and Ayn Rand libertarians; so long the dearest hopes and darkest fears of each component of this bizarre coalition continue to be encouraged by their President.

  14. greywarshark 15

    Interesting idea – a breath of fresh air from an entrepreneur educationalist.
    science education
    9:43 am today

    David Klein – Plant Man
    From Saturday Morning, 9:43 am today
    Listen duration 15′ :17″

    David Klein is a science communicator based in Wellington. Last summer he cycled around the country presenting Tour de Science – a show that explained how all the big things in the universe are made of lots of little things. It was performed in more than 50 towns and cities to rave reviews.

    More recently Klein has been thinking about what it would like to be a plant – making food from sunlight, dealing with all those bugs, the strong connection to the ground, and time passing really slowly. Plants, he says, aren’t brainy but they are clever and successful.

    Klein combines his love of science with his love of storytelling in his new children’s show, Plant Man, which he is performing at the Hutt Stemm Festival – celebrating the multi-million dollar science and innovation industries in Lower Hutt – on May 6.

    (Incidentally it is very difficult, impossible so far, for me to find out what STEMM stands for. The love of acronyms and hatred for actually being clear and fully explanatory for those not in the know is again, rife. However there are clever little icons with pictures that probably explain the meanings. We are drifting towards a pictogram-heavy and abbreviations, skeleton-thought basis of written language!)

    • Rosemary McDonald 15.1


      Science Technology Engineering Mathematics …trying to find out what the other “M” stands for.

      There you go…http://www.huttstemm.nz/

      Resident scientist tells me this is about ‘hard’ as opposed to ‘soft’ subjects and encouraging students towards the same.

      • greywarshark 15.1.1

        Thanks Rosemary
        My point: Science is definite, correct, informative. So it is unscientific to advertise and advance an educational program under the heading of an acronym without informing what it stands for.

        We have enough problems from our economic system making up models which are not totally thorough, without defining them fully, testing them, proving them, spelling out exceptions etc. Having to guess what something means is not scientific. Many problems already are stemming from this tendency in tertiary studies of importance and from people falsely adopting the authority of tertiary studies relied on for excellence by others needing their skills.

        • Incognito

          I respectfully but also strongly disagree because Science is most definitely not “definitive”! Whether it is correct is a moot point and this appears to be based on a perception that Science can or does somehow unveil The Truth. Yes, Science is informative and useful 😉

  15. alwyn 16

    Did anyone really believe that Labour would implement their election promises?
    National promised and had in fact implemented a scheme that would have meant a $680 increase in the National Super.
    Labour then promised to outdo this and would provide a $700/year “heating allowance”.
    Except it isn’t, at least not this year.
    Please raise your hand if you still believe the things that this Government said before the election. What, nobody will admit they were that stupid?

    • Ad 16.1

      That’s a good hit from Janine Starks.

      Labour could lose the election in 2020 with the tilt of just a few retired people.

      Very interested in the budget commentary from the Minister of Finance on that one.

      • Barfly 16.1.1

        Shrug they will see the full amount in 2019 and 2020 – so unlikely to be a problem IMO. National weren’t going to anything for me except probably more demonization and harassment – this winter payment may be a new pair of glasses for me so 🙂

        • alwyn

          Perhaps they won’t notice.
          On the other hand the National payment would have provided you with both a new pair of glasses AND a spare pair in case you broke them.
          Keep the faith though comrade. The Party may lie to you but you will still follow them till the end. Marching to the strains of the Internationale will help keep you warm, even if you can’t keep your home warm.

    • The Chairman 16.2

      Of the half a million or so that can’t afford to visit their GP, a number of them will also be struggling with their power bills. Hence, how many will fall ill and perhaps die from this shortfall and delay?

      The price of Labour’s Budget Responsibility Rules?

      Oh well, at least Labour managed to balance the books eh?

      Labour, the party the left can count on to let them down.

    • Gabby 16.3

      Not fair is it wynny. Next thing you know, someone might notice that people who are still working don’t need handouts.

    • SPC 16.4

      Funny how National are running two attack lines at the same time.

      The winter payment was not means tested/the amount is less than National’s tax cuts in the first year.

      • alwyn 16.4.1

        Which National people are you referring to?
        For the umpteenth time I am not now, never have been in the past, and never will be in the future a member of any political party.
        I am a pure swinging voter who was quite happy to say that National should be replaced at the last election but was of the belief that there was nobody capable of taking over and providing a stable sensible Government. The last six months have demonstrated the my view was absolutely correct.
        A tired National would be better than the current Ship of Fools.
        So, my friend, who were you talking about when you posted this reply to me?

        • SPC

          ha ha, a third term government is tired, but there is/was no one better to take over is what someone part of stream b would say on a pro left blog.

          • alwyn

            Why didn’t you answer my question?
            “Which National people are you referring to?”.
            I am curious who in National might be offering similar arguments to myself.

    • greywarshark 16.5

      Does anyone believe that anything useful will ever result from your memos on this blog? I would put the likelihood of useful from you at 95% against.

      • alwyn 16.5.1

        Your estimate of 95% is probably about right. I would say that 5% of the questions I ask get an intelligent reply from people who have actually thought about the topic and are willing to provide some reasoned arguments for their views.
        The rest are like you. You come out with comments without any justification at all for making them. When questioned on the reason for the statement you either ignore the question or complain that anyone who dares to question your views should be banned.
        C’est la vie. At least I can try and make you see the error of your ways.

  16. Rosemary McDonald 17

    Natrad’s Country Life outdid itself this morning with a follow up of the ‘growers unable to find enough pickers’ item from an earlier program.


    They interviewed two Kiwi workers and apart from their take home pay of $600 pw clearly rattling the interviewer they hypothesized that the growers were pleading shortage of staff to i gain an increase in the number of RSE workers…who it appears are cheaper.

    The other segment looked at organic vegie growers….the brother gave up his work as a contractor on ‘conventional’ farms after a head injury but noted that some of his previous clients would not eat their own commercially grown carrots because of the agrichemicals used in the growing.


  17. cleangreen 18

    Ad; – “Labour could lose the election in 2020 with the tilt of just a few retired people.”

    My response is;

    ‘Labour/NZF had better make all our oldies health better during this time’ as we need to be alive in 2020 to vote for them again otherwise this 74yr old and our senior comrades will perhaps not be around then to save the labour/NZF parties then, and give us subsided dental please..

    • greywarshark 18.1

      And give us all old, terminally ill, or limited for life and wanting a demise option the benefit of chosen euthanasia from options properly drawn up with wide consultation with those having thought through its use, and after considering arguments against are dealt with.

      I see the 104 year old eminent fully capable australian has to travel to Switzerland with his family to carry out his wish of a legal death of his own choice amongst loved ones.

      We older NZs trying to be rational, good citizens doing the right thing for us and limiting our otherwise mounting health costs just to keep us alive and breathing, become targets for police raids as if we were under authoritarian rule. By the way we aren’t are we? Perhaps it has been quietly announced and I missed the death sentence to democratic respect and individual choice in the news that day.

  18. The Chairman 19

    John Milford, Chief Exec Wellington Chamber of Commerce is advocating for Wellington to consider selling its stake in the city’s airport.


    Good to see a number of commentators (in the comments section following the article) telling him what’s what.

    I’m with manifest: “Cutting out the corporate welfare projects like the film museum, convention centre and indoor arena unless they provide a realistic return would be sounder economic policy.”

    • alwyn 19.1

      Consider selling?
      They shouldn’t need any time to do that. “Just do it”.
      Wellington is cursed with Local Body politicians who are really only interested in their feel-good exercises. That and pretending that they are only in it for the public good.
      Our current mayor announced that he didn’t need a Council supplied, and ratepayer paid for car for his use.
      That’s fine if he believes in it and it should certainly save the ratepayer money. The problem is that he didn’t not spend the money. He gave it as a grant to his arty-crafty friends. Then to get around he uses another Council owned car which is no longer available for Council employees doing useful work. So he ends up costing us more than if he hadn’t gone in for his grandstanding and taken the car in the first place.
      Meanwhile we still have no emergency water supply for the Hospital and if there is an earthquake the Hospital will be shut down completely within about 3 days. To supply a reservoir would be something useful you see and our Council doesn’t do useful things. Spending $40,000 painting a patch of Cuba Street in bright colours is much more their style.

      • The Chairman 19.1.1

        Why do you think they should just do it, alwyn?

        Where do you think the money would be better invested?

        • alwyn

          The first thing they could do is stop borrowing.
          At the moment they plan to increase borrowing by around $600 million over the next 10 years. That is about $3,500 per resident.
          Then they could repay the existing debt. Then they could spend it on necessary infrastructure, which does not, in my opinion, include restoring the old town hall. Let’s face it. I was closed in 2013, will probably not reopen until 2023 and I don’t think anyone has missed the old barn.
          How is that lot for a start.

          • Draco T Bastard

            The first thing they could do is stop borrowing.

            Selling their shares in the airport would immediately increase the councils borrowing. It’s the nature of removing an income stream.

            At the moment they plan to increase borrowing by around $600 million over the next 10 years. That is about $3,500 per resident.

            Which tells us that they’re not charging enough in rates.

            • alwyn

              The average rates bill in Wellington on a house is about $3,500/year.

              National Super for a couple is about $35,500/year before tax or about $32,000 if taxed at the lowest rate. A lot of the elderly live on that pension and nothing else.

              At the 2013 Census the median income for people over 65 was only about $20,900. At hat time the New Zealand Super for a person living alone was $21,300/year. It was about $16,100 each for a couple. Those were pre-tax numbers. About 90% of the people over 65 got National Super so you can see roughly how many have very little else
              Figures from the latest Census are not available and accurate ones covering the whole population may never surface.

              What do you think is a reasonable rates bill Mr Plutocrat? Would you think 20% of your pre-tax income would be about right?

              • Draco T Bastard

                The average rates bill in Wellington on a house is about $3,500/year.

                National Super for a couple is about $35,500/year before tax or about $32,000 if taxed at the lowest rate. A lot of the elderly live on that pension and nothing else.

                And a lot of them are free-hold and so the rates bill is all they’re paying.

                Compared to, say, an unemployed person on 12000 (including accommodation) and who’s paying $6000/year in rent.

                Which do you think I have more sympathy for?

                What do you think is a reasonable rates bill Mr Plutocrat?

                Somebody a few years ago calculated that the amount we pay in rates is, across all of us, was about 1.5%. So, maybe 3%?

                But, of course, there would still need to be the lease charge of ‘owning’ the land which should be set at a square metre rate. $1/m^2 sounds about right.

            • The Chairman

              “Which tells us that they’re not charging enough in rates.”

              Or they are spending far too much.

              • Draco T Bastard

                No, a lot of the issues we have is because they’re not spending enough as they do stuff on the cheap which results in a shit job which, inevitably, results in costing more (see Leaky Buildings, Leaky Hospitals, Rena grounding, the list goes on).

          • The Chairman

            “The first thing they could do is stop borrowing”

            Depends what they are borrowing for. Nice to haves can wait till we can afford them.

            Additionally, borrowing can help spread costs out reducing the quarterly burden on ratepayers.

            The return the airport generates can help to pay of debt or reduces the need for it. Thus, if they sold it to fully pay off their debt they’d lose that ongoing revenue stream going forward. As the airport is largely a monopoly, it’s a good investment to hold onto.

      • Draco T Bastard 19.1.2

        They shouldn’t need any time to do that. “Just do it”.

        Yes, because making the city worse off so that some rich bludgers can be richer is such a Good Thing™ to do.

        • greywarshark

          Don’t forget to put the /sarc in when you are being ironic. We have a number of deadheads here who would take your wry comment at face value.

          It is amazing that in the 21st century with so many loose brains haring off into space or creating avatars AI algorithms etc., we still have the same sort of comments that would have been uttered when NZ was young. I am sure that The Chairman and Alwyn would have said similar when Vogel was going to raise money for the NZ railway project in colonial NZ.

          We have the example of living dinosaurs coming on TS all puffed-up and pompous while we try to face a future that will become ever more problematic. I have been reading about Thomas Hobbes thinking in his book Leviathan that we will have to give up our individuality under the iron stamp of a despotic sovereign.

          And here is an item from The Statesman showing some who illustrate how short and brutal life can be. https://www.thestatesman.com/opinion/citizenship-tangle-1502631775.html
          Are we on the way to that life with people being hounded to work where there is no work, forced to sleep in virtual caves (garages etc) while surrounded by houses, forbidden to ask for food from agencies whose work of providing food aid is limited and controlled by government. Is it Hobbes that has an answer, does Kafka’s view of twisted bureaucracy tell us anything?

          The economist Hayek had a number of ideas: He used the term catallaxy to describe a “self-organizing system of voluntary co-operation”. Hayek’s research into this argument was specifically cited by the Nobel Committee in its press release awarding Hayek the Nobel prize. That seems a good word or bone for the busyheads to chew on. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catallaxy

          We are so clever, but can’t find a thoughtful, kind and practical way to handle old, basic problem, trying a method that looks at physical remedies that suit, and then forms a theory to explain the method. Perhaps we don’t want to find an answer, we enjoy the argumentation while the needy wait sadly. Would we rather spend our time doing puzzles? Kindness is limited in much of the discussion on politics it seems.

          Well, here was a problem that was exercising the brains of the intelligent throughout the 1700s and didn’t finish until 1882.

  19. Morrissey 20

    Our globe-totting media darling of a prime minister should go there too.


  20. The Chairman 21

    “The Northcote by-election is an opportunity for the Green Party to promote our early successes in Government while highlighting our points of difference,” Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson said.

    Did the Nation snub the Greens today?

    Hard to promote successes and points of difference when one isn’t given (or fails to utilise) the air time.

    • Incognito 21.1

      You do realise that the Greens have not yet nominated their candidate, yes?

  21. Good God, I’ve just watched a Hudson Institute discussion on Chinese policy in Xinjiang!

    We should not be doing business with China! The information given is bloody frightening,

    A long watch, but disturbing, very disturbing! 1 hr 40 minutes.

    For instance, blood testing of all Uyghurs for organ matching with countries along the road of the One Belt, One Road – feeding China’s organ harvesting industry.

    We should be BLOODY SCARED OF CHINA!

    • Bill 22.1

      Well, I guess it’s a bit scary to take splab from the Hudson Institute seriously 🙂

      • Well, I didn’t know all that about the Hudson Institute and I agree, funding from the Koch Brothers is a big red flag.

        However, much of what is talked about is corroborated by Radio Free Asia and other sources.

        With a Chinese spy inside the Nats and in our parliament, we should be scared of China!

        • Bewildered

          Not a great recovery your last paragraph probably did more damage to your arguement than Bill questioning your source

          Likewise leave the light on if your scared of China 😊

          • greywarshark

            Are you not scared because you are the Chinese spy Bewildered?

  22. SPC 23

    The new Director of the CIA has form for torture in Thailand.

    Giving head in Bangkok to get ahead in the company
    Getting ahead by inducing confessions
    Inducing confessions by puting people to sleep
    Living the dream of rendition to the land of the Green Card

    Will all future directors require this on their resume, will it be the new normal for promotion to this level of leadership?

  23. ropata 24

    Austerity is a failure, Keynes showed that governments ought to run deficits to keep the wider economy afloat. National wasted the opportunity to take advantage of very favourable conditions for borrowing instead cutting contributions to Kiwisaver and cutting services. Government surplus = social deficit.

    (We won’t even need to run deficits if we implement positive money)

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  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
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    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    1 week ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
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    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
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    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
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    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
    Our Good Fortune: Precisely because she has never been an ideologue (she calls herself a “pragmatic idealist”) Jacinda Ardern has a political nimbleness and spontaneity which, when infused with her exceptional emotional intelligence, produces spectacular demonstrations of leadership. Jacinda's empathic political personality contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    2 weeks ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago

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

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

  • ICYMI Business: Chorus and Stride hopeful
    ASB sees 6 percent GDP fall in 2020; Chorus, King Salmon and Stride reassure their profits are still on track; Augusta withdraws fund on rent relief fears; US stocks slide again; US jobs data looms ...
    3 mins ago
  • The Bulletin: When are we getting out of lockdown?
    Good morning and welcome to The Bulletin. In today’s edition: Conditions for leaving lockdown explored, nation’s first death from Covid-19 reported, and Australian govt continues to discriminate against NZers.When will the Covid-19 lockdown across New Zealand end? Short answer – when it’s actually safe to do so. Officially, the current state ...
    The SpinoffBy Alex Braae
    21 mins ago
  • Covid-19 live updates, March 30: Australia bans gatherings of more than two as it nears 4,000 cases
    For all The Spinoff’s latest coverage of Covid-19 see here. Read Siouxsie Wiles’s work hereNew Zealand is currently in alert level four. The country is shut down, apart from essential services. For updated official government advice, see here.The Spinoff’s coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by The Spinoff Members. To support this work, join The ...
    The SpinoffBy The Spinoff
    39 mins ago
  • Coronavirus: PM backs families battling to keep seniors in their bubble
    People over 70 and those with underlying health conditions faced the lockdown four days before the rest of the country - but some of the elderly still aren't taking any notice. ...
    39 mins ago
  • A photo essay on the one thing to keep you sane in the lockdown: bookshelves
    Steve Braunias presents a photo essay of the one thing that New Zealanders are holding close to their hearts during the Lockdown: their bookshelves. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's bookcase at Premier House in Wellington. The photograph which she posted this weekend on her Instagram page reveals two novels by Elizabeth ...
    1 hour ago
  • Glimmer of hope for Lake Alice victims
    Police start “initial” investigation into abuse at a notorious psychiatric hospital. David Williams reports The Government has missed a 90-day deadline for responding to a United Nations committee over torture at Lake Alice’s child and adolescent unit in the 1970s. However, in a move that might represent a glimmer of ...
    1 hour ago
  • Emma Espiner: Sunday at Countdown
    Emma Espiner makes a slow and deliberate trip to the supermarket yesterday, where she finds we are approaching social distancing in a very New Zealand way  It took me three attempts to go to the supermarket. Two days ago I saw the cheerless conga line snaking around the car park ...
    2 hours ago
  • Society’s ‘invisible bonds’ come into the light
    Dr Neal Curtis looks at all the points of implicit trust within society, and how Covid-19 is revealing how important this trust is As I stood in the queue to get into our local supermarket it was encouraging to see how carefully people were engaging in social distancing to minimise ...
    2 hours ago
  • Practise, practise, practise: The Black Fern and the law
    From growing up on the remote East Cape to becoming a Black Fern and a lawyer, Ruahei Demant wants to show young Māori that anything is possible. In the long run, Ruahei Demant wants to be a sports lawyer. But in the short term, the Black Ferns first-five is juggling her ...
    2 hours ago
  • Like being randomly pricked with a pin … and worse
    Having toughed it out alone with Covid-19 and survived, one Kiwi man learned the hard way how self-isolation really can save lives, writes Jill Herron Choosing to self-isolate early with only Sophie the spaniel as company led to a lonesome, rough ride through Covid-19 for a Christchurch asthmatic – but ...
    2 hours ago
  • Love in the times of Covid-19
    As we begin what could become a long period of self-isolation, we encounter a dilemma. On the one hand, epidemiological research and recent global events show us the dangers of not responding swiftly to Covid-19. With community spread now within our shores, it is critical that we follow government orders ...
    2 hours ago
  • The fears of community health and care workers
    Community health and care workers talk of their fear of infection  -  for themselves, their vulnerable clients and New Zealand Over the last few days, Newsroom has written several articles about the fact that thousands of home and community health care workers, who care for elderly, disabled and sick people, have ...
    2 hours ago
  • Covid-19: Petitions launched demanding ‘hazard pay’ for essential workers
    Calls are growing for extra payment for those who continue to head out to work every day, including many on very low wages.The Spinoff’s coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by The Spinoff Members. To support this work, join The Spinoff Members here.Two petitions have been circulating over the weekend ...
    The SpinoffBy Toby Manhire
    2 hours ago
  • History, hope, and Covid-19
    Covid-19 will transform society, just as the plague and smallpox transformed nations centuries ago. This time, however, we have something they didn’t, writes historian Ayelet Zoran-Rosen.Throughout history, epidemics and pandemics have been a threat to people and states. They strike societies with little or no notice, upend their social and ...
    The SpinoffBy Ayelet Zoran-Rosen
    2 hours ago
  • Christchurch, coronavirus and the ‘new normal’
    The Covid-19 epidemic is only the second time New Zealand has entered a state of national emergency. Newsroom’s Sam Sachdeva had first-hand experience of the first  - the devastating Christchurch earthquakes - and tries to make sense of how the two compare. There is so much that is new about New ...
    2 hours ago
  • The virus as a Vector for power use switch
    In another of his interviews with key industry CEOs on their response to the Covid-19 crisis, Rod Oram talks with Simon Mackenzie of lines company Vector, who expects permanent changes in where and why people consume electricity even once the lockdown ends At mid-afternoon on Wednesday, nine hours before New ...
    2 hours ago
  • Facebook hires AAP for NZ fact-checking
    In the lead-up to the general election, Facebook has launched a fact-checking service for New Zealand and the Pacific, Marc Daalder reports Facebook has contracted the Australian Associated Press' fact-checking division to serve as a certified agency to review content pertaining to New Zealand and the Pacific and rate its ...
    2 hours ago
  • Govt’s ComCom Covid-19 directions illegal and irrational
    The Consumers' Union of Aotearoa has issued a challenge against Kris Faafoi's ministerial press statement which instructed the Commerce Commission to relax its standards for supermarkets and telecommunications companies[*]. ...
    3 hours ago
  • Public gatherings restricted to two people and all foreign investment proposals scrutinised, in new ...
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra No more than two people are to gather together in public spaces, and playgrounds will be closed in the latest restrictions in the coronavirus crisis. Meanwhile the government will now scrutinise all foreign investment proposals ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    6 hours ago
  • Give people and businesses money now they can pay back later (if and when they can)
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Linda Botterill, Professor in Australian Politics, University of Canberra The novel coronavirus sees Australia facing major unprecedented health and economic crises. The key to preventing a downward spiral of the economy is to avoid a collapse in incomes of newly laid-off workers ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    9 hours ago
  • How Ardern’s coronavirus kindness theme can become contagious
    The South African ‘Don’t Panic Buy’ jingle. Video: ENCA/PickNSave PACIFIC PANDEMIC DIARY: By David Robie, self-isolating in Auckland under New Zealand’s Covid-19 lockdown as part of a new Pacific Media Watch series. A South African celebrity jingle that has gone viral at the end of this week could easily ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    11 hours ago
  • Government says Australia’s coronavirus curve may be flattening
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra The federal government says there are signs the coronavirus curve may be flattening in Australia. Scott Morrison told a Sunday news conference the rate of increase in cases had fallen to about 13-15% a day ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    13 hours ago
  • Broadband and data usage surges as New Zealanders reach out
    Whether to connect with friends and colleagues, catch up on news, or stave off the boredom with bingeable TV, we’ve all been on our devices a lot more than normal.Vodafone has released a summary of its traffic stats for the past six days, which compares phone calls, broadband, and mobile ...
    The SpinoffBy Michael Andrew
    15 hours ago
  • Rushed Vaping Bill During Covid-19, Grossly Unfair
    New Zealand vaping representatives have joined forces to condemn the Government continuing with its plan to rush legislation through Parliament to regulate vaping despite the Covid-19 lockdown. The Vaping Trade Association of New Zealand (VTANZ), ...
    15 hours ago
  • Locked down and locked out in Australia
    Celebrated Kiwi author and expat Ian Brodie adds his voice to pleas for the Australian government to relax welfare rules and help more than half a million vulnerable New Zealanders, writes Jill Herron. Brothers in arms, we are not. That’s the call from award-winning Kiwi author, photographer and film tourism ...
    16 hours ago
  • Review: Netflix’s addictive Tiger King will leave you feeling grubby for watching
    The new true crime documentary sensation shares many of the flaws of its own subject, writes Sam Brooks.Joe Exotic, the man at the centre of Netflix’s new documentary series Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, is a star. There’s an unnerving charisma that burns through the tattooed eyeliner, the sickly ...
    The SpinoffBy Sam Brooks
    16 hours ago
  • NZ lockdown – Day 4: First death in New Zealand from coronavirus
    By RNZ News New Zealand’s Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern have confirmed the country’s first death from the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. Dr Bloomfield said New Zealand had its first death today, after a woman who was initially diagnosed with influenza died. The woman ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    16 hours ago
  • Covid-19 in NZ – Sunday’s numbers charted
    How is Covid-19 spreading within the country? Newsroom is collating information as it's available to paint a picture of what's happening. There were 63 new cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, down from the previous day's 83 new cases. Details of how many tests have been completed are now being released ...
    16 hours ago
  • PNG’s Health Minister Jelta Wong ‘sidelines’ Kramer in virus briefings
    Papua New Guinea will have only one press release in the afternoons at 4:00pm daily to give updates on the Covid–19 in the country in a reshuffle of information briefings. Health Minister Jelta Wong announced this when visited the office of the PNG Nurses Association accompanied by his department’s ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    17 hours ago
  • First Covid-19 death in New Zealand
    New Zealand has had its first death linked to Covid-19. The patient, a woman in her 70s on the West Coast, was admitted to hospital with what was thought to be influenza complicated by underlying health conditions. She was later diagnosed with Covid-19. The woman's family has asked for privacy ...
    18 hours ago
  • President Lú-Olo declares Timor-Leste state of emergency over coronavirus
    Pacific Media Watch The President of Timor-Leste, Francisco Guterres Lú-Olo, has declared a state of emergency to enable the government to address the global Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. The state of emergency started last night at midnight and it will run until the night of April 26. Timor-Leste’s National Parliament ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    18 hours ago
  • Cut Traffic Speeds To Reduce Pressure On Hospitals, Say Cycling Advocates
    It’s time to lower traffic speeds to reduce crashes and free up hospital beds, say cycling advocates. "This will reduce harm and ease the burden on our health workers and emergency services," says Patrick Morgan from Cycling Action Network. ...
    18 hours ago
  • Pacific coronavirus: French Polynesia Covid-19 tally rises to 34
    By RNZ Pacific The number of people testing positive for Covid-19 in French Polynesia has risen by four to 34. The update from the government said the hospitalisation rate is unchanged with one person in care. Last night a curfew was declared for the first time, forcing residents across ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    19 hours ago
  • Ohura Medieval Market Day, and the fight to keep a small town standing
    It’s a town where people often feel the rest of the country has given up on them, in the middle of a region where every place feels isolated. So how did Ohura become an unlikely centre of Medieval Combat sports in New Zealand? Alex Braae spent three days there finding ...
    The SpinoffBy Alex Braae
    20 hours ago
  • Coronavirus – analysing the data makes you think we could do with more of it
    If you want to understand some of the thinking behind the policy response to the spread of coronavirus, you might want to read the paper from the Imperial College COVID-19 Response Team, which is credited with accelerating the introduction of the current lockdown measures in the UK. The paper builds ...
    Point of OrderBy xtrdnry
    20 hours ago
  • The Pink Jumpsuit: An essay about the bubbles we live in
    ‘It seems like someone else’s dream of my past.’ For Emma Neale, the painting ‘Wanderlust’ by Dunedin artist Sharon Singer stirs memories of her childhood, and new understandings of guilt and forgiveness.There were gifts from my father when he came home from overseas trips. Love offerings; a bit like those ...
    The SpinoffBy Emma Neale
    20 hours ago
  • Māori Party delay launch to fight Covid-19
    The Māori Party is delaying the launch of its new-look party to fight Covid-19 in Māori communities. ...
    20 hours ago
  • Resuscitating a virus-ravaged economy – the answer lies in the soil and the exports it generates
    Westpac is forecasting 200,000 jobs will be lost in NZ as a result of the response to the coronavirus pandemic.  Chief economist Dominick Stephens estimates economic activity during the four week lock-down would decline by a third, despite the government and the Reserve Bank having “done a lot to calm ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    21 hours ago
  • Renée, the Lockdown Letters #3: Help yourself to my rhubarb
    In our new series The Lockdown Letters, some of New Zealand’s best writers tell us what they’ve been up to in the days of Covid-19 alert level four. Today, Ōtaki author Renée.I have a wild tomato flopping all over the path down the back of the veg garden. I picked a ...
    The SpinoffBy Renée
    22 hours ago
  • Covid-19 live updates, March 29
    For all The Spinoff’s latest coverage of Covid-19 see here. Read Siouxsie Wiles’s work here. New Zealand is currently in alert level four. The country is shut down, apart from essential services. For updated official government advice, see here. The Spinoff’s coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by The Spinoff Members. To support this ...
    The SpinoffBy Toby Manhire
    24 hours ago
  • Covid-19 scams: Here’s what you need to look out for
    Online criminals have been making the most of Covid-19 by preying on people’s fear and doubt. Here are some of the calling cards of these con artists.With most New Zealanders tucked up at home, digital devices are proving to be critical tools for staying connected with each other, making good ...
    The SpinoffBy Michael Andrew
    24 hours ago
  • A visit to the supermarket
    Author and illustrator Sarah Laing draws a rite of passage in The Lockdown. Reprinted with the permission of the author from  Let Me Be Frank, Sarah Laing's blog devoted to "Reading. Writing. Parenting. Angsting." Let Me Be Frank is also the ...
    1 day ago
  • Life on paws: How to deal with your pets during lockdown
    As New Zealand adjusts to a month of lockdown, many pet owners have questions about their furry friends. Alex Casey had a chat with the SPCA – here’s what she learned. AC: My cat had a disgusting abscess on his tail and now has to get his stitches out. ...
    The SpinoffBy Alex Casey
    1 day ago
  • No shops, no launches – but the NZ book scene is finding new ways to reach people under lockdown
    Books editor Catherine Woulfe takes an energising walk around the lockdown block of New Zealand books. When the bubbles settled over us they settled over the books too. Libraries were the first to shut down, then the physical bookstores and finally, the hammer blow: online sales and indeed any notion of ...
    The SpinoffBy The Spinoff Review of Books
    1 day ago
  • Fiji: A paradise under pandemic rules
    Convincing its citizens to take lockdown seriously will be a major challenge for Fiji’s government, writes Mandy De Vries. My husband, Howie, and I are lucky enough to live on the beautiful Coral Coast in Fiji. We started a tourism operation here two years ago which was, until recently, booming. ...
    1 day ago
  • We’re better placed now than GFC or 1987
    New Zealand’s businesses and government are far better prepared for the rapidly escalating global health and economic crisis than they were for the Global Financial Crisis in 2008-09 or the stock market crash in 1987, says Rob Campbell, one of the country’s most experienced corporate leaders. “Executive teams and boards ...
    1 day ago
  • Gavin Ellis: Time for adversity journalism
    Journalism commentator and former editor Gavin Ellis says media organisations play a vital role in keeping the community informed and, if possible, safe. They also have a crucial part to play in the maintenance of public order and morale, ­ just as they did in the 1940s. With the country in ...
    1 day ago
  • We’ve been forgotten: midwife
    The country has millions of protective gowns, gloves and eyewear – midwives ask: Where are they? David Williams reports Two days into a national lockdown some midwives didn’t have any protective equipment, adding to concerns about safeguards for frontline health workers. On Friday, announcements were made by the Health Ministry ...
    1 day ago
  • What lockdown could do for your business idea
    Covid-19 lockdown provides valuable time for planning a new business, as Dr Mary-Ellen Gordon explains You have a great idea for a business. You’ve been working to get it up and going. Then, just as you were starting to gain traction, the entire country and much of the rest of ...
    1 day ago
  • Covid-19: A catch-22 for our most vulnerable
    Low-income workers whose jobs have disappeared thanks to Covid-19 will increasingly need to access benefit income. When this happens, however, they lose a tax credit for their children. As a direct result of the Covid-19 crisis, the Government has improved its rescue policies for business. We now need to see urgent ...
    1 day ago
  • First boredom, then fear
    The strange energy of preparing for level four is over, now the dystopian reality has kicked in. Danyl Mclauchlan writes an essay about home life during a ‘cosy catastrophe’.We start by setting up our home workspaces, covering the kitchen table with such a thick mass of black cables and USB ...
    The SpinoffBy Danyl Mclauchlan
    1 day ago
  • All Australians will be able to access telehealth under new $1.1 billion coronavirus program
    Source: The Conversation (Au and NZ) – By Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra Scott Morrison will unvieil on Sunday a $1.1 billion set of measures to make Medicare telehealth services generally available during the coronavirus pandemic and to support mental health, domestic violence and community services. The “Medicare ...
    Evening ReportBy The Conversation
    1 day ago
  • Covid-19 in NZ – Saturday’s numbers charted
    How is Covid-19 spreading within the country? Newsroom is collating information as it's available to paint a picture of what's happening. There were 83 new cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, down from the previous day's 85 new cases. Details of how many tests have been completed are now bing released ...
    1 day ago
  • NZ lockdown – Day 3: PM Ardern chats with followers on Facebook
    By RNZ News New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern spoke to her followers on Facebook today from her office in Premier House. Her chat lasted about 15 minutes and garnered more than 310,000 views. She discussed wage subsidies for full-time and part-time workers, personal protection equipment (PPE) supplies for ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    1 day ago
  • Effective coronavirus messages and fake news: Can we do better?
    COMMENTARY: By Bob Howarth (self-isolating in Australia after his latest trip to Timor-Leste) After days of web surfing for Covid-19 coronavirus news around the Asia-Pacific, two areas that appear to need improving in some countries are official communication and fact checking. So here’s my two cents, rupiah, kina or ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • The best binges on NEON for these extraordinary times
    Whether it’s a robot uprising, a woman catfishing into the publishing world or a bunch of lovestruck islanders, NEON has you covered. Here’s what we’re bingeing on NEON for the foreseeable future.WestworldJust in time for lockdown, there’s a buzz-worthy show with endless discussion points coming out on a weekly basis. ...
    The SpinoffBy The Spinoff
    2 days ago
  • Covid-19: Who really needs to be wearing protective gear?
    There’s been a lot of talk about PPE of late – do we have enough, is it getting to the right people, and who exactly are the right people, anyway? Here’s the latest official advice.The Ministry of Health has now circulated updated advice on the appropriate use of PPE (personal ...
    The SpinoffBy Leonie Hayden
    2 days ago
  • The face of the Covid-19 response: Who is Ashley Bloomfield?
    A month ago, not many had heard of Ashley Bloomfield. But as the Covid-19 response has ramped up, the director-general of health has become a calm, reassuring presence in a time of uncertainty and fear. Rachel Thomas profiles him, in a piece first published on RNZ.Today, Saturday, director-general of health ...
    The SpinoffBy Rachel Thomas
    2 days ago
  • To fish or not to fish – that is the question
    Jim Kayes tests the waters of social media to see how people are coping with being told to avoid their favourite pastime. “There is something ridiculously exhilarating about catching a fish. The thrill might have faded for the salty angler, but for this rookie, the novice still snagging fish hooks ...
    2 days ago
  • New PPE plan leaves community care workers without masks
    The Government yesterday reassured us there are plenty of masks for front line staff dealing with the public. Yet it seems home care workers, who provide up-close personal care for tens of thousands of people every day, won’t be given them. Yesterday two documents hit my inbox. One was a ...
    2 days ago
  • Don’t fret, folks – Hone’s sweet with the mayor so long as he sets up checkpoints and doesn’...
    Hobson’s Choice spokesman Don Brash (a former leader of the National and ACT Parties) is not alone in challenging the justification for tribes claiming to have closed roads to protect their people against Covid. Deputy Prime Minister and New Zealand First leader Winston Peters – his remarks apparently ignored by ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    2 days ago
  • Manaaki Key For Getting Though COVID-19
    Preliminary results from a survey investigating how well-equipped Māori whānau in the South Island are to stay at home for extended periods show that the majority are prepared to manage their short-term needs, but have increasing anxiety about ...
    2 days ago
  • Parliamentary Monitoring And Reporting Is Critical In Dealing With COVID-19 Responses
    "The risk of fraud and corruption is compounded during crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. When quick decisions are necessary to move vast amounts of resources, bribery, fraud and corruption abound," says Suzanne Snively, Chair of Transparency International ...
    2 days ago
  • Pacific coronavirus: Guam still region’s hot spot with 51 plus cases
    By RNZ Pacific Guam remains the Pacific pandemic hot spot with the number of Covid-19 coronavirus cases climbing above 50. On Friday six people tested positive for the coronavirus, bringing the total to 51. Thirteen of the cases are currently in hospital. READ MORE: Al Jazeera live updates – ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • Outrage after Indonesian politicians get priority testing for Covid-19
    By Mong Palatino Many Indonesian internet users have expressed anger over the decision of the House of Representatives (DPR) to test its 575 members for Covid-19. Indonesia has a population of more than 260 million. As of today, the country has 913 Covid-19 positive cases with 87 deaths. But ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • Latest numbers: 83 new cases, two in ICU
    New Zealand has 78 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 and five probable cases, the Government has announced today, taking the total to 451. Civil Defence Emergency Management director Sarah Stuart-Black said 12 people are in hospital and two are in intensive care, including one on a ventilator. Twelve are in ...
    2 days ago
  • Covid-19: Total tops 450
    New Zealand has 78 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 and five probable cases, the Government has announced today, taking the total to 451. Civil Defence Emergency Management director Sarah Stuart-Black said 12 people are in hospital and two are in intensive care, including one on a ventilator. Twelve are in ...
    2 days ago
  • ‘We’re ready,’ says NCD chief Parkop with Port Moresby locked down
    By Michelle Steven in Port MoresbyPacific New Guinea’s National Capital City Covid-19 Task Force team is preparing ahead should there be a possible coronavirus case during the 14-day lockdown. NCD Governor Powes Parkop told a media conference that the capital city would be in total lockdown with no public ...
    Evening ReportBy Asia Pacific Report
    2 days ago
  • Automatic 3-month Visa Extension Granted For Every Migrant
    Leading immigration lawyer Aaron Martin assesses the impact of the announcement of the epidemic notice for migrants. Immigration New Zealand announced that the government epidemic management notice relating to immigration matters comes into effect on 2 ...
    2 days ago
  • Government rules magazines and community newspapers aren’t an essential service
    Just a tiny handful of print publications will continue through the lockdown, with only daily newspapers specifically identified as being able to continue. Duncan Greive spoke to publishers of magazines and community newspapers about the impact on them and their communities.Publishers of magazines and community newspapers are reeling, after a ...
    The SpinoffBy Duncan Greive
    2 days ago
  • Magazines and community papers aren’t an essential service, leaving some small towns and elderly w...
    Just a tiny handful of print publications will continue through the lockdown, with only daily newspapers specifically identified as being able to continue. Duncan Greive spoke to publishers of magazines and community newspapers about the impact on them and their communities.Publishers of magazines and community newspapers are reeling, after a ...
    The SpinoffBy Duncan Greive
    2 days ago
  • Coronavirus: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says no change in Australia’s stance to New Zealand...
    Jacinda Ardern has pleaded with the Australian Prime Minister to make an exception to the rule that bars many of the 650,000 New Zealanders there from receiving a benefit. ...
    2 days ago
  • Morgan Godfery, The Lockdown Letters #2: I’m never sleeping
    In our new series The Lockdown Letters, some of New Zealand’s best writers tell us what they’ve been up to in the days of Covid-19 alert level four. Today, political commentator and essayist Morgan Godfery.I’M TWEETING AT 2AM.The responsible part of my brain is sending sleep signals. Inconvenient yawns. The ...
    The SpinoffBy Morgan Godfery
    2 days ago
  • A review of Attraction, the road trip novel we need right now
    Take a vicarious roadie via Attraction, the novel by Ruby Porter that was longlisted for the country’s biggest fiction prize. Released last year, it’s now a slightly eerie snapshot of Aotearoa as we were. Attraction is a New Zealand road trip novel with a heavy dose of postcolonial guilt. Whitewashing, cultural ...
    The SpinoffBy Emma Gattey
    2 days ago
  • Iwi do their thing: helping those in need
    Iwi everywhere put support plans into action, focusing on their  kaumātua, writes Kayne Ngātokowhā Peters. Iwi are ramping up support services to assist their people in need following the closure of Ministry of Social Development offices and the move to online and phone assistance from Work and Income. Central North Island ...
    2 days ago