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Open mike 13/04/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 13th, 2022 - 72 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 Policy).

Step up to the mike …

72 comments on “Open mike 13/04/2022 ”

  1. Jenny how to get there 1

    The war on truth continues

    Russian invasion driving more disinformation online

    A report from Facebook owner Meta finds a big jump this year in disinformation and propaganda linked to Russia's invasion of Ukraine

    By DAVID KLEPPER Associated Press

    8 April 2022, 03:34

    …..The report outlined other disinformation efforts tied to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, including one involving dozens of fake accounts that spread anti-Ukrainian rhetoric. Another network filed thousands of fake complaints about Ukrainian Facebook users in an effort to get them kicked off the platform. That network hid its activities in a Facebook group supposedly dedicated to cooking.


    • Treetop 1.1

      Even if news sources were not blocked there is still the threat of a person or their family being harmed for speaking out.

      War is so ugly for those who are caught up in it. The soldiers and cilvillians who are killed or severely injured. The loss of a home, job, education, no health care and food shortage or starvation. Fear of being tortured or raped or a hidden bomb being activated. Economic collapse and the sight of destroyed buildings and artillery being strewn.

  2. Adrian Thornton 2

    Interesting new interview from Arron Mate' with acques Baud. Former intelligence officer with the Swiss Strategic Intelligence Service who has served in a number of senior security and advisory positions at NATO, the United Nations, and with the Swiss military.

    "As the Russia-Ukraine war enters a new phase, former Swiss intelligence officer, senior United Nations official, and NATO advisor Jacques Baud analyzes the conflict and argues that the US and its allies are exploiting Ukraine in a longstanding campaign to bleed its Russian neighbor."

    • Sanctuary 2.1

      If Russia doesn't want to be bled white in the Ukraine it could simply stop invading it.

      • Adrian Thornton 2.1.1

        Thanks for your input…it was really insightful…It’s hard to understand why the Ukrainian negotiations teams haven’t scooped you up with such profound and multidimensional insights like that…go figure.

        • Sanctuary

          Well it is really that simple. Putin is a despot and a tyrant who decided his approval ratings could do with a boost, just like they got with his invasion of the Crimea, so a nice little week long war of aggression to seize the entire Ukraine was just the ticket.

          Only that didn't work out (well he got the polling boost he was after) – the Ukrainians proved to be stubbornly unwilling to be purged and subjugated and lots of other people who happened to have lots of weapons were of a mind to agree with them. The fact that this is also bleeding a Fascist Russia white is a happy bonus.

          So if Russia wants out, it can simply stop it’s invasion and pull out of the Ukraine. That’ll mean the end of Putin, but who would shed a tear for that bastard? He is happy to see tens of thousands die in this pointless war for no other reason than to save his own skin.

          • Adrian Thornton

            With negotiators like you, who needs enemies?….interesting how so many arm chair warriors seem so willing to fight an unwinnable war to the last Ukrainian…and bring us all to the edge of WW3 while they are at it…nutters one and all.

            • Sanctuary

              You seem to fail to grasp that this war is existential for the Ukraine. Defeat means the extinguishing of their identity, the erasure of their language and culture and the murder or imprisonment and/or exile of it's intelligensia and leadership class. They’ve been down that road before under Stalin and they don’t want it to happen again as long as they can fight and I fully support them in that desire.

              They'll keep fighting because it literally is a case of dying on their feet facing the enemy is better than dying kneeling next to a mass grave with a bag over their head.

              You are effectively telling to Ukrainians to surrender for their own good. You really are trying to gaslight them. Personally, if they say they are willing to fight to the last man rather than surrender I’ll take them at face value.

              And besides, for the Ukraine winning is simply not losing. Everyday they hold out is a day closer to drawing NATO and USA into the fight, or at least getting the weapons they need to drive the Russians back. Zelensky knows this, which is why he spends every day trying to draw the Americans and NATO into the war.

              • Yes, Peter Zeihan is saying pretty much the same thing.

                According to Zeihan, the biggest worry for NATO and the US is just how inept the Russian army has been in this conflict. And that it is very clear that any direct conflict between NATO and Russia would result in a rapid, humiliating defeat for Russia.

                Therefore, the big fear is, that in such a conflict, the only other option to defeat for Russia would be to go nuclear.

                According to Zeihan, Russia's aim, from a strategic standpoint isn't to stop at Ukraine. But if Russia gets its way, it would ideally take over Poland as well, to meet its strategic objective of creating buffer states at its weak points where previous invasions have occurred.

                Therefore, the west would prefer to bleed Russia dry or have Ukraine defeat them outright in Ukraine so the feared direct confrontation with NATO doesn't have the opportunity to happen in the first place.

                Peter Zeihan is well worth listening to, btw. At the time Crimea was annexed back in 2014, Zeihan predicted a full Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

                He based his prediction on the falling birth rates in Russia. He reasoned that Russia needed to take this action by then. Otherwise, its decreasing population would mean it was soon going to be unable to draft sufficient soldiers for its purpose.

                • Stuart Munro

                  Russia would, by this time, probably be relieved by a dirty ceasefire that gave them the Donbas and Mariupol. It is not tenable for Ukraine however, who need their ports to export grain. And of course, the next invasion would be much easier than the current one. Ukraine has little option but to fight.

    • Jenny how to get there 2.2

      Pick a side, Eh Adrian

      Blood thirsty imperialist conflicts are going to break out.

      You are only looking at the symptoms, not the causes, military experts do what they do discuss tactics and strategies for fighting wars.


      To stop war we need to untangle the root cause of imperialist conflicts and war.

      An economy that demands endless growth.

      The same with stopping climate change.

      • Adrian Thornton 2.2.1

        "You are only looking at the symptoms, not the causes"..are you serious? nearly every thing I post about the war in the Ukraine is about the causes, about historical context…that is exactly what is lacking in all MSM coverage of this conflict…you would think this conflict started six weeks ago out of nowhere.

        • Jenny how to get there

          Adrian Thornton

          13 April 2022 at 7:50 am

          ….. nearly every thing I post about the war in the Ukraine is about the causes, about historical context…

          What you post Adrian is all about the superpower maneuvering leading up to war, and then you pick a side.

          The fact is whatever the maneuvering of the West toward Russia, this was still a war of choice. And Russia is the aggressor.

    • DB Brown 2.3

      You reckon they haven't tried talking, negotiations – EU talks, NATO talks. This and that leader going to talk to Putin?

      The whole thing's a master plan? GTFO.

      You reckon there's been no protests worldwide. No internal protests. No mass arrests.

      I reckon your reckons are wildly biased. You simply can't see the monster destroying cities. Because some air brained principle shit that's all in your head.

      So tell me what's your option out of this, because talking, so far, has utterly failed.

      Putin is clearly a murderous hate filled egomaniacal paranoid delusional asshole. He could be making bank right now, the utter fuckwit. But he's chosen war crimes and genocide, he's cost tens of thousands of lives to 'make his point'. His point being, Ukraine were right to look for protection from that piece of shit.

      We can clearly see the world stage, though you are convinced we've all worn our rosy tinted glasses.

      • Dennis Frank 2.3.1

        Anyone who has established a track record of eliminating political opponents with radiation poisoning ought to be viewed as public enemy #1. Putin has three strikes on that record, so he's out already. However we do need to factor in why Russians selected him in the first place:

        The economic reforms of Gorbachev and Yeltsin were so financially and socially painful for the majority of Russians, that by the end of the 1990s the words "democrat" and "reformer" were perceived by many as offensive.

        The liberal politicians who had carried out those reforms were seen, at best, as populist losers, at worst, enemies of the people.

        After a decade of unpopular reforms — including price liberalization and privatization — and bloody regional conflicts in the post-Soviet space, "stability" and "security" became the most desirable goals of the people.

        When American TV presenters ask me today why, according to opinion polls, 83% of Russians support President Vladimir Putin, I know the answer. And it’s a little more complicated than 22 years of government propaganda.

        Stanislav Kucher is a journalist and former Russian TV presenter, has previously worked as Editor-in-Chief of the Snob multimedia platform, Chief Political Analyst and Creative Director of Kommersant-fm all-news radio network, Anchor at Sovershenno Sekretno TV channel and Editor-in-Chief of National Geographic Traveler (Russian edition). He lives in New York.


        • DB Brown

          The world's seen plenty of idiots in power who played on circumstances to elevate themselves.

          While historical context helps, Putin never was the answer to Russia's problems. Clearly. A history of mismanagement is also not a Russia-centric phenomenon. Blaming history is a weak game. The fascist loves historical grievance to hold as a picture in front of their current psychopathic behaviour.

          Putin's not special he's another power drunk fuckwit who believes his own press. Met enough of them, anyone who think's their press is representative of them is a right plonker at best.

        • Treetop

          Will Putin last as President until 2024 and two 6 year terms after that?

          Putin has a master plan otherwise he would not have extended the constitution in April 2021 to run as President for more than two terms and the terms were extended to 6 years each.

          When this happened I thought his political ambitions were a warning.

          • Dennis Frank

            Tenure of an autocrat usually depends on the power base. Random factors such as assassination & ill-health also apply though. As the historical context described by Kucher above suggests, Putin fills a need in the collective psyche of Russians. Therefore his base is extremely broad. Only someone in the Russian hierarchy who can play power games as well as he does can threaten him in that scenario.

            • Treetop

              There is no single contender to stand up to Putin. He is heavily guarded, he appears to be in good physical health and people would fear the internal intelligence service under his command.

              • Dennis Frank

                Add to that a couple of other factors. He has likemindedness on his strategy with his second in command – I posted a detailed profile which demonstrated that conclusively a while back. Even more of a hawk than Putin, it showed, couple of years older if I recall correctly.

                Usually how it works is betrayal by those somewhat younger in the second level of the power structure, who have developed a consensus that the top guys have lost the plot. A coup requires considerably teamwork and good luck to succeed though, and often is enabled by complacency of those who are confident they have total control. Putin's too shrewd to get that complacent, I suspect.

                Like all complex systems though, stasis is vulnerable to tipping points. Military defeat would apply considerable pressure to the power structure. That's why success from his recent pivot is essential.

        • Stuart Munro

          The liberal politicians who had carried out those reforms were seen, at best, as populist losers, at worst, enemies of the people.

          Also true of neoliberal Labour – Roger Douglas poisoned their voter well for a generation.

      • Sanctuary 2.3.2

        I tell you one thing, I had no idea how much the Finns and the Balts dislike the Russians until this war occurred. But they really, really don't like Russia.

        I suppose they have a fair bit of bitter experience of what it is like living next door to a perennially despotic, reactionary and aggressively expansionist Russian state.

        • Stuart Munro

          The Finns at least noticed Russia weaponizing refugees by feeding them through their border to the EU. Neutral or friendly countries don't pull stunts like that.

      • aj 2.3.3

        You reckon they haven't tried talking, negotiations – EU talks, NATO talks. This and that leader going to talk to Putin?

        This entire article is a must read for an overview of the lead up to this war, written by an ex-NATO officer with insider knowledge. There was plenty of talking over the last 8 years. I posted this a few days ago but it's worth repeating. Adrian has linked to an interview with him further up the page.

        … If we cared so much about peace and the Ukraine, why didn’t we encourage the Ukraine to respect the agreements it had signed and that the members of the Security Council had approved?

        The Military Situation In The Ukraine (Part Two: The War)

        …..In violation of the Minsk Agreements, the Ukraine was conducting air operations in Donbass using drones, including at least one strike against a fuel depot in Donetsk in October 2021. The American press noted this, but not the Europeans; and no one condemned these violations.

        In February 2022, events were precipitated. On February 7, during his visit to Moscow, Emmanuel Macron reaffirmed to Vladimir Putin his commitment to the Minsk Agreements, a commitment he would repeat after his meeting with Volodymyr Zelensky the next day. But on February 11, in Berlin, after nine hours of work, the meeting of political advisors of the leaders of the “Normandy format” ended, without any concrete result: the Ukrainians still refused to apply the Minsk Agreements, apparently under pressure from the United States. Vladimir Putin noted that Macron had made empty promises and that the West was not ready to enforce the agreements, as it had been doing for eight years.

        Ukrainian preparations in the contact zone continued. The Russian Parliament became alarmed; and on February 15 asked Vladimir Putin to recognize the independence of the Republics, which he refused to do …


        Jacques Baud is a former colonel of the General Staff, ex-member of the Swiss strategic intelligence, specialist on Eastern countries. He was trained in the American and British intelligence services. He has served as Policy Chief for United Nations Peace Operations. As a UN expert on rule of law and security institutions, he designed and led the first multidimensional UN intelligence unit in the Sudan. He has worked for the African Union and was for 5 years responsible for the fight, at NATO, against the proliferation of small arms. He was involved in discussions with the highest Russian military and intelligence officials just after the fall of the USSR. Within NATO, he followed the 2014 Ukrainian crisis and later participated in programs to assist the Ukraine.

        • DB Brown

          That was a massively long-winded nothing. Do you really think telling me about The Azov battalion and the Minsk agreements is news?

          And all this trotting out of Russian grievance after 2014… GTFO.

          Look at just the closing paragraph:

          "At the same time, there were reports of sabotage in the Donbass. On 18 January, Donbass fighters intercepted saboteurs, who spoke Polish and were equipped with Western equipment and who were seeking to create chemical incidents in Gorlivka. They could have been CIA mercenaries, led or “advised” by Americans and composed of Ukrainian or European fighters, to carry out sabotage actions in the Donbass Republics.

          Ahh, so the Polish speaking CIA mercenaries led or advised by America, who sought to create chemical incidents…

          No really, GTFO.

    • Francesca 2.4

      Another Swiss , Guy Mettan, founding member of the Geneva Press Club,ex President of the Geneva Red Cross, Swiss politician ,journalist.

      The loss of Swiss neutrality and therefore loss of trust in its institutions.

      By unconditionally backing Ukraine and Europe, we are putting the ICRC’s neutrality and impartiality at risk. The two are inseparable in the eyes of the world. And that is why the ICRC had to respond forcefully to Ukrainian attempts to sabotage its work when it was accused of doing business with the Russians, even though neutrality is at the heart of its mission.

      This refers to the Ukrainians alleging that the Red Cross was helping the Russians to deport refugees far into the wastelands of Russia


      • joe90 2.4.1

        Yup, dude's neutral.


        Russian citizenship was granted to Mettan by Yeltsin administration.


        • Francesca

          Currently residing in Geneva

          According to your metrics of neutrality we can now discount any Ukraine/Russia analysts from US,UK, EU, Five eyes,currently participating in the Ukraine war

          • RedLogix


            War is the failure of politics. And the rules are different.

            In war we ask men like Scud (almost always the men) to put their lives directly on the line. And even if they do not die, they may well return very broken physically or in spirit. Your recycling of misinformation directly undermines and betrays this sacrifice. You make yourself the enemy.

            And don't gaslight us with the 'I only want peace we must negotiate' line. Putin is the aggressor, and has rejected all attempts at diplomacy. That is not negotiation, it is a demand for surrender. It does the enemy's work for him.

            You enjoy some margin for error here, some latitude because NZ is far away and not yet feeling the impact. But if you lived in Ukraine – or much of Europe right now – you might find your freedom of speech not so cheap. I would imagine for instance that your 'citizen journalist' hero Patrick Lancaster will never be able to set a free foot in Europe or the UK ever again.

            This victim blaming gaslighting has gone on long enough. I understand it is in your nature to challenge the conventional narrative – but even this can go too far.

            • Treetop

              War is the failure of politics

              Yes and the impact is devastating.

            • Francesca

              Sorry Red,

              for Russia ,diplomacy since at least 2007 has met a brick wall.How much better it would have been for Ukraine if it had been encouraged to implement the Minsk accords 2 they signed up to in 2015.

              Encouraged by the US to flout the accords, then openly declare there would be no implementation, then declare Crimea would be taken back by force,the build up on the LOC, the accelerated flood of weapons into Ukraine and if we are to believe documents on a computer in retaken territory by the DPR, the determination to take the Donbas by force, essentially signed an end to diplomacy.

              Misinformation by the way is very subjective it seems

              Reports of CW use in Mariupol that inflamed posters yesterday is not quite so slam dunk today it seems But the visceral reaction will remain


              Some misinfo has been retracted, but the Russian tank driving over the civilian car in the streets of Kiev city for instance, was aired twice on our screens , several days apart as if it was totally factual .The first airing being dated within 2 days of the invasion, when Russian tanks were nowhere near Kiev city.This has still not been retracted here, though its been totally exposed as false on France 24

              Another was the Ukrainian allegation that the Red Cross was in cahoots with Russia

              “The ICRC has not been involved with any forced evacuation, forced transfers of civilians into Russia from Mariupol or any other Ukrainian city…The ICRC does not want to open an office in southern Russia to filter Ukrainians as many reports are alleging. So, that is absolutely false. We are not opening a refugee camp or any other type of camp,” said the spokesman for the ICRC.


              Mariupol was one of the Donbas cities to rise up against the 2014 coup.Many residents are Russian speaking, ethnic Russians who have family and long connections in Russia.Common sense tells me their preference would be to evacuate to family in Russia.This is spun as "mass deportations"

              Yes, I agree, Patrick Lancaster has got a big target on his back.You should watch some of his videos, you might be surprised .His interviewees don't always reinforce a pro russian viewpoint.They certainly show the misery of war.

              And actually thank you for being so polite, even though I know how passionately you feel about this.

              Maybe you are a diplomat after all Red!!

            • Adrian Thornton

              “In war we ask men like Scud (almost always the men) to put their lives directly on the line.”
              No not ‘we’, not people like me, it’s people like you who tell men like Scud to go to war…and always have.

              [FFS! This was a solid discussion thread until you parachuted in and ambushed it with your ‘that shoe doesn’t fit me!’ irrelevance. Stop your flaming BS of accusing others of being warmongers all the time when they’re having mature convo about war but happen to say something that doesn’t agree with you or is not to your liking. You add nothing, you derail, but that’s your way of cancelling them, isn’t it? How would you feel if I derailed you for a while? How would you cope reading those comments, stewing that you cannot comment here with the same old BS and you cannot target your usual suspects? One of these days it is going to happen and that day feels awfully close – Incognito]

              • RedLogix

                Fuck off

                • Adrian Thornton

                  As you make little to no sense anymore, and have become a unhinged warmonger, which I suspect was always bubbling just below the surface…..I am happy to oblige you in that request…have a nice war relaxing in your soft armchair in your warm safe house RedLogix.

                  • RedLogix


                    • Adrian Thornton

                      OK, one final thing…It has been interesting to note that as your lust for war has increased your maturity level has decreased by almost equal amounts..of course this should be hardly surprising, when man allows his most base instincts control his emotions and actions, as yours so clearly has, the result has to be some sort of regression and devolution..also a bit sadly I think, very clearly on display.
                      Anyway unless you want the last word..from me it’s a final cheerio to you….I will now, as you so delicately put it… “fuck off”

                • In Vino

                  Pathetic, Red.

              • Incognito

                Mod note

          • aj

            McCarthyism re-emerging stronger than ever in Ukraine policy debates

            The stakes are far too high to stand by while practitioners of the new McCarthyism again silence dissent. Advocating a policy of caution and restraint does not imply the slightest sympathy for Vladimir Putin or his war of aggression, and we must not allow reckless, unprincipled hawks to get away with asserting that it does.


            • Stuart Munro

              McCarthyism re-emerging stronger than ever in Ukraine policy debates

              Orly? McCarthy destroyed careers – all the Putin Dupes are getting is the occasional mild rebuke.

              No dead (Rosenbergs)

              None imprisoned (150 under McCarthyism)

              No blacklists ( Actually the major tool of the process)

              Part of that may be because the spectre of Stalinist communism has receded – contemporary Putin supporters are not idealogues, just ignorant folk who unaccountably sympathize with murderous assholes.

  3. Logie97 3

    ”Public transport ultimately 'can't be subsidised or underwritten' – Christopher Luxon.”
    headline on RNZ this morning

    This from someone whose only claim to fame was to run a totally underwritten and publicly subsidised business.

    • Nic the NZer 3.1

      Its a typical attitude at his corporate altitude. How many decades has Public transport operated continuously with a fiscal subsidy now anyway? Of course the return on that is the lower demands on the road network and energy.

      I think this clearly explains how Luxon intends to try to run the country fiscally, e.g ideally with both public and private sectors reporting profits, as if this is their primary purpose.

  4. Jimmy 4

    Mark Mitchell and Megan Woods did not know the OCR or the unemployment rate today when asked by Hosking on Newstalk ZB.

    These people are either wanting to run the country, or are already running the country and they do not know these basic economic measures.

    That is frightening.

  5. SPC 5

    Richard Prebble: Inflation nation – debunking reckless Government spending, delusions of ministers

    The Herald is currently promoting this as a story – a column by Prebble. This is deliberate misinformation by a MSM outlet. F'in neo-liberal hypocrites.

    Inflation at the moment is coming from pandemic global supply disruption, related worker shortages (isolation with omicron spread and border controls) and some because of asset wealth from QE stimulus.

    Prebble is promoting the myth its because of government spending to promote tax cuts to reduce funding to government.


    • Dennis Frank 5.1

      Herald applies useful idiot theory to infotainment. Prebble puts up hand, "Hey, me!"

  6. SPC 6

    The OCR decision is coming up. The best approach from the RBG is to provide certainty to business – such as 4 increases of .25 to 2% by the end of the year (1.5 by June, 1.75 by September).


    • Jimmy 6.1

      The only question today is will it be a 0.25 increase or a 0.5 increase.

      Either way, our mortgage rates will be increasing.

      And someone needs to send a memo to Megan Woods after the decision so as housing minister she actually knows what the rate is!

      • SPC 6.1.1

        The RBG moved it to 1.5%, so given 4 more reviews it could go way higher than 2% by the end of the year.

        It will place some pressure on those on floating rates and those set to renew.

    • Nic the NZer 6.2

      Having a preconceived plan for changes to interest rates is of no value. If the RBNZ detects the bottom falling out of the economy they will put rates back down (as they did in 2014).

      • SPC 6.2.1

        Sure, but a 0.5 increase will have a serious impact on renewal of mortgages before then. Which is why a smaller increase and signal to the market of a further increase is a valid alternative.

  7. Poission 7

    The RBNZ has already signaled OCR price increases for the year,(markets have already priced in 1.25%)

    The also signaled that there was a preference for a .5 change at the last meeting (which dissipated under Omicron,as the Nov change that did not happen under delta)

    A .5 change would remove any doubt to the Housing market,that the holiday is over.

    The US came into day with 8.5% headline inflation,and US markets have priced in 9 increases for the rest of the year,Germany over 7 (with wholesale rates over 22%) so they have large increases to come.

    We still have increases into the energy market to come,with electricity distribution yet to enter,increases in road user charges (after the discount period),increased fuel charges due to the biofuel mandate (these will be a lot larger the estimated)

    • Poission 7.1

      OCR increase by.5,War on inflation starts.


      Least regrets consensus.

      Members noted that annual consumer price inflation is expected to peak around 7 percent in the first half of 2022. The risk of more persistent high inflation expectations has increased. The Committee agreed that their policy ‘path of least regret’ is to increase the OCR by more now, rather than later, to head off rising inflation expectations and minimise any unnecessary volatility in output, interest rates, and the exchange rate in the future. The Committee agreed to a 50 basis point rise in the OCR, consistent with this least regrets analysis.

      Clear signals for Fiscal policy constraints.


  8. Strange goings on at the moment in and around Belgorod in Russia, near the border of Ukraine. Also, a Russian staging ground for its assault on Ukraine.

    Firstly, an arms depot mysteriously exploded recently.

    Then helicopters of unknown origin attacked a fuel depot in the area.

    And now, a a key rail bridge for supplying the Russian war effort has somehow ended up as a twisted mess of rubbish.

    It would probably be a good idea if the Russians stopped all these false-flag attacks on their own critical logistics.

    • Francesca 8.1

      So please tell me what the advantage for Russia is in these false flag attacks?

      A false flag attack, like Tonkin Bay and the anthrax attacks are useful to provide a casus belli.Doesn't apply here. Or in the case of say Ukraine, to bring in more arms, no fly zone, money.Doesn't apply here.

      Russia is at war , militarily and economically, already.So I fail to see why Russia would do this

      Zelensky suggested in an interview that the oil depot was a legitimate military target.

      • tsmithfield 8.1.1

        I was being flippant. I didn't seriously believe the Russians would be doing this stuff themselves. I should have included a smiley face.

        I don't think even the Russians are stupid enough to do be destroying their own logistics. They have been having enough trouble with that now.

      • Stuart Munro 8.1.2

        Ukraine has asserted that the Belgorod attack was by a third party.

        As a state a false flag attack isn't obviously beneficial. But states may not be the only players. Imagine an oligarch who sold a large amount of fuel offshore, and also to the Russian state. He might be in considerable trouble – until his inventory goes up in smoke and with it the ability to prove what he'd been up to.

  9. Dennis Frank 9

    Traffic light goes orange: https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/300565072/covid19-all-of-new-zealand-to-move-to-orange-traffic-light-setting

    As all kiwi motorists know, that means speed up. Particularly in Auckland.

    • Incognito 9.1

      Yay! I won my orange chocolate egg bet smiley

      • Dennis Frank 9.1.1

        Hope it's a big one. cheeky

        Also hope we get a few months of relative normalcy before the new variant shows up here. I was puzzled that masks are no longer necessary in schools but perhaps young immune systems regenerate faster is the explanation…

        • Tony Parker

          With regard schools, after tomorrow there's 2 weeks holiday and maybe the thinking is that the downward trend will continue and when our tamariki go back there's less of a threat. The decision will be up to schools I would imagine.

        • McFlock

          Or it's maybe more difficult to control a class if you're constantly telling people to mask up, so either the rule gets ignored or you lose the rule?

          Not an ideal public health policy on its own, but then that's why these things go through cabinet: the full range of considerations come in.

          Fuck normalcy, though. Not yet.

          • solkta

            Schools are always so keen to implement their own pathetic little rules. Other peoples rules not so much.

            • McFlock

              Not just schools. Otago uni sent an email around today basically removing all mandates – vaccine & mask, except where required as a legal minimum.

              I'm so amazingly pissed – they added some bullshit about providing support yadda yadda to folks who didn't feel safe with that. Nothing short of a mandate will support them. We have old folks & vulnerable folks of all flavours. Apparently they can all go fuck themselves.

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  • Funding boost secures Defence capabilities
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  • Minister of Finance: Wellbeing Budget 2022 Speech
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  • Wellbeing Budget 2022 Speech
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  • Paving the way for better outcomes for disabled people
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  • Primary sector backed to grow and innovate
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  • More support for first home buyers and renters
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  • A booster for RNA research and development
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  • Unleashing business potential across NZ
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  • Securing the wellbeing of Pacific communities
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  • Government delivers timely support for whānau
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  • Government delivers critical infrastructure
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  • A health system that takes care of Māori
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  • Investing in better health services
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  • Budget highlights underlying strength of economy in face of global headwinds
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  • Health Minister to attend World Health Assembly in Geneva
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  • New efforts to counter illegal timber trade
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  • Deaths in New Zealand lower than expected so far during the pandemic
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  • New law helps secure New Zealand’s maritime domain
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  • Trade and Export Growth Minister to travel to Bangkok for APEC
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  • Government delivers new ICU space at Christchurch Hospital
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  • Next steps for specialist mental health and addiction services
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  • Belarusian leaders and defence entities targeted under latest round of sanctions
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