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Open mike 07/03/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 7th, 2012 - 64 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

64 comments on “Open mike 07/03/2012”

  1. Logan Edgar disses a few brain cell abusers: Otago not for idiots – OUSA president

    It’s about promoting that if you act like an idiot, cause damage and make us all look bad, then this isn’t really your place in the world.

    But praises most scarfies.

    There is a real culture change happening here at Otago. Year on year, student offences have decreased. Students are increasingly dobbing in fellow students for what they themselves are beginning to view as unacceptable behaviour.

    Your average scarfie is a law-abiding soul. It turns out that, nationally, the Southern Police District, which includes Dunedin, Otago Rural and Southland, has one of the lowest crime rates in our beloved Aotearoa. Better yet, of the three areas, Dunedin has the lowest total crime per head of population. And the lowest rate of public-order offences.

    If you think about the context of 20,000 young people in one place, that tells one hell of a story about how law abiding we basically are.

    So while a few idiots make the headlines most of what happens is good here – and can still be fun.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      Semi-related, on Morning Report this morning they were talking about Otago’s student union and how they got around the ridiculous legislation passed last year.

      The university contracts out student services to the students association. Students are charged a fee for these services by the university. Membership of the students association is completely free and is now moved to an “opt-out” model.

      UCSA in Canterbury has worked this way for decades at least, so not sure why the other unions didn’t see this as a possible way around the legislation.

      • McFlock 1.1.1

        on the flipside, I’m sure the OUSA president’s new call for harsher penalties to be faced by students who misbehave off campus – as opposed to OUSA’s opposition to the code of conduct since its inception – is in no way related to the fact that OUSA now relies on university goodwill for much of its funding. Pure coincidence.

        • Lanthanide 1.1.1.1

          And fair enough too, that’s a good outcome.

          • McFlock 1.1.1.1.1

            Nah (and I’m not known for my tolerance towards drunken yoooothes).
               
            The role of the association is to provide balance to the calls for excessive punishment and summary use of pepper spray. I can understand removing formal opposition to the coc, because the university declared that a conflict of interest so there were no student reps on appeals boards evaluating students facing exclusion. But going too far the other way smacks of being a company doctor. 
                 
             

        • Puddleglum 1.1.1.2

          Yes.

          One of the oddest things about this ‘liberating’ legislation is that (a) students will still have to pay the university’s service levy (that is, they will still have their money taken off them ‘compulsorily’) but (b) they have, in effect, lost some control over how that money is spent in their interests.

          What is more, while there is the ‘principle’ that no-one should have to belong to an association they don’t want to, I suppose, that was entirely possible previously. And, while students still had to part with their money compulsorily (as now) they, once again, still had some say in how that money got spent (i.e., choose the charity they’d give it to).

          Someone didn’t think this through. 

  2. http://whoar.co.nz/2012/how-ayn-rand-became-the-new-rights-version-of-marx-george-monbiot/

    “…Her psychopathic ideas made billionaires feel like victims –

    – and turned millions of followers into their doormats..”

    you should know that key and many/most around him/most rightwingers are rand-ites..

    ..and why they just ‘don’t care’ ..(apart from about themselves/their class) is explained when you realise their transferral of wealth to the richest/tearing away of support for the poorest/most vulnerable has a (psuedo)-philosophical-base..

    ..and why they seem immune to such imperatives as compassion/commonsense/basic-fairness..

    ..y’see..!..they/the rich/elites are the ‘supermen’…

    ..the rest of us are the leeches…

    ..(know yr enemy..eh..?..)

    ..and i’ll give you a killer one-liner..to stop any randite in their tracks..

    ..a large part of the rand-preaching is that any person taking state support is a ‘leech’..in fact you could call it a pillar of rand-ite belief..

    ..but what most of these rightwingers don’t know…is that after preaching this most of her life…

    ..that rand took state-support..big-time…but hidden/concealed under her husbands’ name..

    ..(a left-equiv. would be news that marx had actually owned/run sweatshops on the side..)

    ..all the anti-rand ammo you will need..is here..

    http://whoar.co.nz/?s=ayn+rand

    phil-at-whoar.

    • rosy 2.1

      Agree Phil, a very good article written by George Monbiot on the anniversary of the death of the high-priestess of those ‘job creators’ who are positioning labour ‘flexibility’ as reasonable; who are attempting to get rid of state-owned anything – even if it means losing money; and of those who believe banking and big corporations need no regulation because the selfishness of the players will create a balance. It’s language that is heard every day now.

      I was particularly impressed with these paragraphs…

      Through her novels (such as Atlas Shrugged) and her nonfiction (such as The Virtue of Selfishness) she explained a philosophy she called Objectivism. This holds that the only moral course is pure self-interest. We owe nothing, she insists, to anyone, even to members of our own families. She described the poor and weak as “refuse” and “parasites”, and excoriated anyone seeking to assist them. Apart from the police, the courts and the armed forces, there should be no role for government: no social security, no public health or education, no public infrastructure or transport, no fire service, no regulations, no income tax.

      The poor die like flies as a result of government programmes and their own sloth and fecklessness. Those who try to help them are gassed. In a notorious passage, she argues that all the passengers in a train filled with poisoned fumes deserved their fate. One, for instance, was a teacher who taught children to be team players; one was a mother married to a civil servant, who cared for her children; one was a housewife “who believed that she had the right to elect politicians, of whom she knew nothing”.

      This is the philosophy of the ‘new right’ and the Tea Party (despite the contradictions) and separates them from the old-time conservatives, who believe in providing a social safety need. There’s not been any talk of the ‘compassionate conservative’ for quite some time. I think I miss it.

    • framu 2.2

      really interesting adam curtis doco on sky at the mo

      “all watched over by machines of loving grace”

      also available here

      only the first bit deals with ayn rand – but highlights the massive holes in her theories – especially when rational objectiveism didnt go her way

      • H.Crown 2.2.1

        In the Adam Curtiss doco it showed that
        Ayn Rand and her Wacko friends including Greenspan met every Saturday night, and called themselves “The Collective” I am now certain with her Wacko idea’s, she was not of this world, and was the Borg.

        • framu 2.2.1.1

          ” called themselves “The Collective””

          yeah – had a chuckle at that

    • Vicky32 2.3

      .all the anti-rand ammo you will need..is here..

      Thanks Phil.. (I have written science fiction reductio ad absurdam about Rand’s beliefs, but it’s good to have non-fiction.)

  3. tc 3

    Dunno which was more disappointing on RNZ just now Blinglish getting the wet bus ticket treatment from a pathetic Robinson or Parker pussying around rather than going for the jugular over the NACTs appalling performance on so many fronts.
    Then lightweight Fafoi given an opportunity on police budget slashes failed to mention thatt they were exposed on this in the election campaign and denied it so another blatant lie……no wonder they treat NZ with contempt, noone is holding them to account.

    • just saying 3.1

      I’d lower your expectations of Labour now tc. It may take the sting out of the feeling of betrayal when the Dalai Shearer starts sharing his “vision”, apparently next week

    • muzza 3.2

      How many times do I have to spell it out….they are on the same team

      Parliamentarians for Global Order! woops, I mean, Action!

      Time to WTFU people!

    • Lanthanide 3.3

      I thought Parker was good.

      Admittedly my alarm wakes me up at 7:20, so I missed out on Bill English’s spot. Small mercy I suppose.

  4. Salsy 4

    John Key: Dishonest or deluded?

    PM without answers, a leader without a vision. A bloke who’s just realised the world he once knew doesn’t exist anymore. And that it won’t be returning.A complete banker, just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    • muzza 4.1

      “PM without answers, a leader without a vision. A bloke who’s just realised the world he once knew doesn’t exist anymore. And that it won’t be returning.A complete banker, just in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

      At what point I wonder will people start to ask the question that surely stares them right in the eyes, even the really thick ones!

      Jonk Key was been a plant, always was, and still is now. It is no case of wrong place wrong time, its the case of structured positioning of JK into the position he is in, to run with the policies that they are. Simple as that!

      Perhaps the obvious truth is a little too ugly for people!

  5. ScottGN 5

    “Watching the House yesterday was like a blast from the past, circa the Bolger-Shipley government; leaks from public servants, unpopular asset sales, economic woes, and tough cost cutting.”

    Vernon Small likens Key’s administration to shambolic final days of the last National Govt. Actually I reckon history will come to judge Key even more harshly than poor old Jenny Shipley.

    • Uturn 6.1

      If they refuse to strike back they will be poor bastards. This is the first shot of industrial war, now. If they do not strike back, winner take all, they send a signal that they consent to being wiped out. It amazes me that these happenings occur so often yet no one understands it’s the opportunity to change industrial relations in NZ permanently. The employer is effectively trying to starve you to death, you, your family, steal your labour and take your housing. That it happens slowly, under the guise of being questionably legal, makes it feel less dramatic, that there is some sort of hope the aggressor will stop out of the kindness of his heart, that you’re responsibly preserving some wider expression of civil order – but the result is no different than if they walked into your home with jack boots and kicked you out.

      An employer is not god, management are not gods, they are human, flesh and blood, they can be reached. The law does not have final say in the affairs of people – it changes from day to day. The only thing standing in the way of industrial war and employers setting up slave wage conditions is the minds of the workers stuck within cultural norms. Once people stop thinking that life is what you see on TV, it becomes very simple to retaliate effectively.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      But Mr Brown is refusing to take a side in the industrial dispute between the company and union members – saying he is working only for the “people of Auckland”.

      No, really, he isn’t. If he was working for Auckland he would have fired the PoAL management months ago.

      As for the workers, their best option is to emigrate to Australia.

      • Ianupnorth 6.2.1

        Time for a general strike me thinks – everyone out!
         
        POAL will be the first to employ this tactic, closely followed by AFFCO and the Oceania Group.

        • Colonial Viper 6.2.1.1

          Yeah a general strike is the only way to go now. Tax strike, rates stroke, rent strike, mortgage strike.

  6. POAL has just announced that it will continue with casualisation of the workforce.  Existing workers are entitled to apply for jobs with the contracting companies but you can bet that any union activist worth their salt will not get a job.
     
    Time for Len Brown to step up.

    • Jim Nald 7.1

      Len who?

      • Jackal 7.1.1

        Brown! Apparently you get brown when you mix red and green. Not seeing much of those colours from the supposed left wing mayor of the supercity.

    • muzza 7.2

      “Time for Len Brown to step up” – Not a chance!

      This is a real shame, and I hope I am proved wrong!

      • Morrissey 7.2.1

        “Time for Len Brown to step up” – Not a chance!

        I think he’s taking advice from David Shearer’s strategist: do nothing, say nothing, or at least if you DO say something, make sure it’s bland and/or incomprehensible.

    • vto 7.3

      United they stand and divided they fall.

      It is as simple as that. Divide and conquer. Drive down the amount of money paid to the people. Good one (not).

  7. prism 8

    When there are strikes I would like to have a module supplied to the public in extended serious labour disagreements, which would list all the major headings and show what each side is asking for. There would be footnotes at the back to explain the reasons for the requirements. This would bring some clarity to the confusion of information or misinformation drip fed to the public from each side.

  8. Jackal 9

    David Tamihere recall has ulterior motives

    What a complete waste of time and money. There is absolutely no grounds for a recall here, because David Tamihere did not physically go onto the property his parole conditions stipulate are out of bounds…

    • Te Reo Putake 9.1

      Well, if he does go back inside he might use the time to rethink his refusal to help identify where he buried the bodies. And he clearly did breach his parole by returning to the Coromandel, so I’m optimistic he’ll be back inside sooner rather than later. It’s be nice if the TV crew went with him as well for encouraging the breach.

      • Jackal 9.1.1

        The TV crew had no inkling that it would be a breach of the parole conditions, which it isn’t anyway. I bet it didn’t register with Tamihere either. Parole conditions do not routinely include airspace. His conditions state that he is not to enter the bush itself, which he has adhered to. Do you have problems with reality based cognitive reasoning perhaps Te Reo Putake?

        • Te Reo Putake 9.1.1.1

          Jeez, what a wally you are sometimes Jackal. He may be a monster, but I find it hard to believe that Tamihere didn’t realise that going to the Coromandel was going to breach a bail condition that he not go to the Coromandel. But still, feel free to offer your services as his defence lawyer. That should almost certainly guarantee he goes back inside.
           
          Just to remind you who you are supporting, Tamihere murdered a defensless young man who was tied to a tree and then disposed of the body. He then kept a young woman alive for several days, raping her at will. He then killed her and disposed of the body. After ending their lives, he then stole their property and was caught red handed trying to sell the stuff. If it wasn’t for his greed, he may have got away with one of the most brutal crimes in NZ history. He stills owes the family the bodies. He should grow a spine and tell them where their loved ones are, but he won’t because he’s a coward.
           
          By the way, I don’t think he will go back inside for this breach. At a guess, the court will consider the stunt ill thought out and not a deliberate act. The judge will probably accept that he’s too thick to understand that the method of transport to the Coromandel is irrelevant and give him the benefit of the doubt.

          • Jackal 9.1.1.1.1

            All circumstantial evidence Te Reo Putake. No murder weapon, no proper ID, no DNA. Just a few things Tamihere nicked from the car he stole. If you know so much about the case, how much money was he trying to sell their possessions for?

            Tamihere doesn’t “owe the family the bodies,” because Sven Urban Höglin’s body was found in 1991 and Tamihere probably doesn’t know where Heidi Birgitta Paakkonen’s body is located. Comment on something you actually know something about instead of proving your ignorance.

            Tamihere certainly was an easy target for the cops though, who have likely let the real murderer go free all this time. Wouldn’t it make them look bad and cost a shit load of money if that was the case? 20 years in jail for a crime he potentially didn’t commit, no wonder they’re trying to close him down.

            • McFlock 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Personally I think Bain is much more likely guilty than Tamihere.
                 
              Maybe he needs a rich former all black in his corner?

            • Te Reo Putake 9.1.1.1.1.2

              There is not a shred of doubt about the conviction, Jackal. Shame on you for supporting rape and murder. You really should shut up now.

              • Morrissey

                There is not a shred of doubt about the conviction…

                Actually, there is. Not the least of the concerns is the fact that the police investigation was led by the notoriously corrupt John Hughes.

                Shame on you for supporting rape and murder.

                Jackal did not support rape and murder. Such an accusation only makes you look trivial and less than serious.

                • Ianupnorth

                  Having watched the Sunday programme, I at first thought that Tamihere must be guilty, but by the end of it was thinking, yes he isn’t very pleasant, but there are more holes in this case than Swiss Cheese.

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Rubbish. Tamihere tried every legal avenue to escape justice, and lost every appeal. Apart from these murders, he had already killed and had been convicted for other acts of violence. He is a cowardly piece of crap and the coppers did brilliant work putting him away.
                   
                  Anybody that tries to diminish this vicious and unrepentant criminal’s crimes is going to be seen as supportive of them, I’m afraid. I appreciate that the Jackal is too young to have a clue about the facts of the case, what with him not being alive at the time, but that does not make his pandering to this creep any less offensive.

                  • Jackal

                    I don’t support rape and murder Te Reo Putake. Quite the opposite… I support justice, and in this case I don’t think it’s been done. Keep your insults and disgusting baseless accusations to yourself.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Happy to be of service, Jackal and good to see you’ve changed your position to one of of opposition to rape and murder. That wasn’t so hard, was it?

                    • Jackal

                      My position has not changed Te Reo Putake. I have never supported rape or murder. Stop being an idiot!

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Have you stopped abusing your children yet.

                  • Morrissey

                    Te Reo,

                    I note with concern that you have an obnoxious habit of putting words into people’s mouths that are the exact opposite of what they in fact think or say.

                    That no doubt gives you the advantage at, say, a workplace (with cringing underlings too afraid to contradict you) or in a pub (people too drunk to argue) but here on the Net, such abuse only makes the abuser look bad.

                    You’re better than that, surely?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Ha! I wish my underlings would cringe around me, but I’m not that kind of boss and they’re not that kind of underling. 
                       
                      You probably spotted that the Jackal annoyed me with his half baked support for Tamihere’s lying and disrepectful claims of innocence. But, you are right, I shouldn’t have continued on with that rather sneering comment. I was just trying to hammer home that it is contradictory to be opposed to crimes like Tamihere’s and at the same time suggest he didn’t do them, when the only unexplained matters in the case are whether he acted alone and where the other body is buried. Both things Tamihere could clear up in a hearbeat, if he wasn’t a pathetic excuse for a man.
                       
                      Not everything is a mystery or a conspiracy. Some things are exactly as they seem. This is one of those cases.
                       

                    • Morrissey

                      Ha! I wish my underlings would cringe around me…

                      I’m sure you’re not the kind of boss we see here….

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Well, I do have a Basil like tendency to sigh and roll my eyes, but most days I start out thinking I’m Neil but end up David.

                    • Morrissey

                      most days I start out thinking I’m Neil but end up David.

                      As long as you don’t end up like David’s “mate”…

                  • insider

                    Out of interest, is there any good website or resource accessible about this case? Ellis and Bain have a lot but I’ve not found anything on this.

  9. Morrissey 10

    LIAR WATCH No. 4
    NewstalkZB promotions department
    NewstalkZB, March 7, 2012

    1.) “Here at the Radio Network, we strive to uphold the highest standards of broadcasting…”
    – – – – – – – – – ——- – – – – – – – ——– – – – – – –
    If you enjoyed this, you might like to see….

    LIARWATCH No. 1 (Populuxe1):

    Open mike 27/02/2012

    LIARWATCH No. 2 (grumpy):

    Open mike 01/03/2012

    LIAR WATCH No. 3 (Eyes Wide Open):

    Open mike 02/03/2012

  10. Jackal 11

    The disappearing Police complaint

    On 5 September, I wrote to the Police Commissioner Peter Marshall, to make a formal complaint concerning Owen Glenn bribing people to vote for the National or Act parties in the upcoming general election…

  11. Populuxe1 12

    OK. Gedankenexperiment time. Just for the sake of argument, what would happen if the Crown did return Te Urawera to Tūhoe? Total sovereignty – like Lesotho or Vatican City. However with total sovereignty, they would no longer be considered New Zealand citizens and their access to State infrastructure would exist on a significantly reduced basis.

    • Galeandra 12.1

      What a deep and original question. Can we fiind a kiddy toon clip to support this riff and add yet more burnish to your ‘academic’ quals?

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    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    5 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    5 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    6 days ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    6 days ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    6 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    7 days ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    7 days 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
    7 days 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 ...
    7 days ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week 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
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
  • Black April, May and June?
    Worldwide, the 1918 influenza epidemic – wrongly called ‘Spanish’ flu – lasted about two years. However, it lasted about six weeks in New Zealand (remembered as ‘Black November’, because the dead turned a purplish-black). It is thought about 7000 Pakeha died and 2,500 Maori. The population mortality rate was about ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID 19 has struck… as has a lot of terrible ineptitude from far too many
    In a world and a time when the worst off and most vulnerable have been asked, time and again, to foot the bill for the complete subjugating to the will of the 1% thanks to the GFC, at a point where the world as a whole is now seeing quite ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • What’s in the Coronavirus Package?
    With the economy already reeling from a crisis that’s barely begun, the Government today sought to provide reassurance to workers and businesses in the form of a massive phallic pun to insert much-needed cash into the private sector and help fight the looming pandemic. Here are the key components: $5.1 ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • I just had my benefit suspended during a fucking pandemic
    I am a member of the working poor and so still need state welfare to make rent. So I had booked an appointment for yesterday with my caseworker at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) to apply for a transition to work grant. However the current health advice in New ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago
  • A good first step
    Today the government announced a financial package to deal with the effects of the pandemic. So far, it looks good: an initial $500 million for health to deal with immediate priorities, wage subsidies for affected businesses, $585 a week from WINZ for people self-isolating who can't work from home, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    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. ...
    16 hours 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. ...
    4 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 ...
    5 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 ...
    5 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. ...
    1 week 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 ...
    2 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 ...
    2 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 ...
    2 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 ...
    2 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. ...
    2 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 ...
    2 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. ...
    2 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
    16 hours 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
    18 hours 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    3 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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