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Open mike 19/03/2020

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, March 19th, 2020 - 180 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

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Step up to the mike …

180 comments on “Open mike 19/03/2020”

  1. Reality 1

    Chris Trotter’s best ever article in today’s Daily Blog. Read it and be ever thankful Jacinda is our Prime Minister and not Simon Bridges.

    • weka 1.1

      I give thanks for that every day at the moment.

    • greywarshark 1.2

      I looked that up Reality. All well thought out and fits what we observe and feel. I particularly noticed something about National and Chris's opinion that their 'hazing' treatment is what drives Bridges.

      “Jacinda’s” empathic political persona contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her principal political opponent – the National Party Leader of the Opposition, Simon Bridges. As a fan of the band AC/DC, Bridges will be well acquainted with the concept of “dirty deeds done dirt cheap”. It is one of the darker features of National Party culture that, in order to succeed, their aspiring leaders must consent to being “blooded”. Generally speaking, this requires them to implement policies with which, at a personal level, they may profoundly disagree. The psychic injury inflicted by this requirement to prove oneself “a good soldier” is easily imagined. And the real tragedy is that, having done it once, it gets easier and easier to do it again, and again, and again. The inevitable result is a coarsening of character and an increased susceptibility to harsh and ruthless arguments.

      [Fixed the tags into a block-quote – Incognito]

    • sumsuch 1.3

      Shallow waters ride over earthquake zones with swimming ease. If she really believes in the ideals of people-ism she'll make these few months a stepping stone to taking back control from the powerful. I think she believes in the ideals of easiness fundamentally. Her and Grant, like the rest of the middle class polies, have no real probs. The diff between a CV and the fight to survive of real demo-crats.

      • McFlock 1.3.1

        I think that the lack of empathy required to plot long-term revolutionary change in a time like this runs at odds with the requirements of managing the immediate problem.

        The difference is between the UK response of letting the pandemic slide, vs the NZ response of trying to stamp it out from the start. One lot looked at percentages without empathy, the other lot looked at every possible death as a human life lost.

        We've got the correct sort of government for this problem.

  2. AB 2

    Looks like the middle class self-indulgence of taking overseas holidays will end up killing some of us who can't afford such things. I know we are meant to all be in this together, and we are, but the thought occurs.

    • Janet 2.1

      So why is Winston encouraging the last 80,000 home – bugs and all ? To kill off a few more pensioners ?

      • greywarshark 2.1.1

        Well we could do without having some people. But Winston is acting in accordance with the Party's name NZFirst, and encouraging those who want to return to come back to their homeland for the near future.

      • Incognito 2.1.2

        You’ll have to ask WRP. It is likely to become next to impossible to return to NZ in the near future. Kiwis may miss out on medical care if they’re overseas and the healthcare systems have to prioritise.

        I’d imagine that many people would rather be home with friends & family to look or be looked after.

        Sounds like you disapprove though of Kiwis returning home; should they be refused entry into their own country and be returned on the next flight back?

        • Janet 2.1.2.1

          I most certainly do not disapprove of Kiwis returning home , in a managed way, but they should not have been waiting so long to come home.. I hope Kiwis don,t miss out on medical care because they are not prioritised over non residents.

          • Incognito 2.1.2.1.1

            It is hard to say what is best under the circumstances but as long as individuals still have a choice, they should make up their minds quickly. The interests of the general population outweigh individual concerns at present and this will tilt towards less personal freedom in the foreseeable future till things have stabilised IMO.

    • RedLogix 2.2

      And the advice is pretty ambiguous. It's not at all clear what the status of the 500,000 or so kiwis living in Australia under the 'temporary' SCV444 visa is going to be. The ongoing problem with this visa is that it's officially termed a 'temporary' visa that allows kiwis to 'live and work in Australia indefinitely'. This is a bloody awful fudge that means we aren't really citizens in either country.

      Taken at face value the NZ govt's advice that all citizen's living overseas temporarily should return to NZ asap, logically captures all kiwis in Australia too. Yet in practice it cannot mean this for all sorts of practical reasons.

      On the other hand if Australia, like every other nation, gets to the point of rationing ICU beds, you can bet your sweet nelly that 'non-citizens' will be at the bottom of the list.

  3. joe90 3

    Loon loons..

    ..and Russian loons default to racism, Soros and Gates.

    There are many theories about the origin of coronavirus and the further development of events. The most popular one concerns the monstrous prediction of Microsoft CEO Bill Gates. Last year, he said that 33 million people could die from such a coronavirus in 250 days. The calculations are purely mathematical, but true, the IT tycoon is sure.

    After such statements, adherents of conspiracy theories literally have no doubt that the virus is of artificial origin, and Bill Gates is one of its main sponsors. Another fact adds weight to this theory – a few months ago, the head of Microsoft held a conditional exercise called Event 201, which simulated an outbreak of a new virus that killed 65 million people in 18 months. The idea of ​​the teachings is simple – globalization in the name of salvation.

    It is noteworthy that the famous pharmaceutical giants and the Pentagon leadership participated in this theater of cruel cynicism.

    The fact is that while the disease affects only representatives of the Mongoloid race, such suspicious selectivity raises questions from experts. No less extensive discussion was caused by the story around the laboratory for the study of dangerous viruses. It is located in Wuhan, 32 kilometers from the same market where the disease was first recorded.

    However, there is another biolaboratory in Wuhan – until recently, nothing was known about it. Her address is like someone’s joke – Gaoxin, three sixes – the number mentioned in the Bible, under which the name of the beast of the Apocalypse is hidden. But it’s even more symbolic that it exists on the money of the famous banker Jorozh Soros, who shares the global ideas of Bill Gates. It would seem that nuclear conspiracy theology is completely different, but experts say that a tricky plan lies behind an absurd wrapper.

    https://tvzvezda.ru/news/vstrane_i_mire/content/202023353-O9wUV.html

    google translate

    • Wensleydale 3.1

      "adrenochrome is extracted from the pituitary glands of tortured children"

      I don't know whether to laugh or cry. Either way, Liz Crokin probably needs counselling.

  4. weka 4

    An Auckland woman in self-isolation has been left empty-handed after her online grocery order was cancelled without any warning.

    The woman said her order at New World Stonefields comprised mostly of baby items and she was now working out how she would source her groceries

    People have very individual needs, but we probably need to be talking more about community support right now. Someone in her street or wider area should be able to help with this.

  5. Andre 5

    Should Bernie drop out now? His only realistic path to the nomination now is Biden suffering an extreme adverse medical event. There simply aren’t enough votes left for him to win the nomination with actual votes.

    There's a good argument it's time to pass the torch to a new generation of progressive leaders. Marie Newman's victory over establishment Dem machine favourite Dan Lipinski in solidly Dem Illinois 3rd, where Sanders lost to Biden by 41k votes to 63k votes strongly hints there's a big place for progressive ideas and people, but that Sanders is no longer the best person to front them.

    https://www.salon.com/2020/03/18/bernie-needs-to-step-back-and-let-other-progressive-leaders-flourish–especially-women/

    There's a good public health argument the time is right for Bernie to step down and allow the remaining primaries to be the rubber-stamping exercise they were going to be anyway without needing large crowds to gather at polling places. And that by doing so, he actually increases his leverage to get progress on his priorities.

    https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/03/sanders-drop-out-primary-coronavirus.html

    • weka 5.1

      I haven't been following closely, but there's also the argument that a strong progressive/left wing voice is needed for its own sake and to keep those values and politics visible at a time when they are desperately needed. If Sanders pulls out and Bidens is it, this will demoralise the left and make the true system change harder. Will probably drop the vote too. This is true irrespective of how Bidens would then do in the main election, but hugely problematic if he loses (likely).

      If the worst case scenario happens (45 wins), then what is the state of the left wing resistance at that point? That would be high on my priority list if I was in the US.

      • KJT 5.1.1

        It is just like the Greens standing in all electorates.

        Scares Labour into adopting Green policies, when they see enough voters splitting off what they regard as "their vote" to the Greens.

        • weka 5.1.1.1

          Nice one, good example.

        • Andre 5.1.1.2

          That's more or less what happened in 2016, where Hillary's final platform moved a long way towards Bernie's. If you recall, it didn't end well.

          • KJT 5.1.1.2.1

            Yes, I recall.

            When Trump was promising even more leftward things than Hilary.

            Like getting US rust belt workers, back to work!

            Worked for him.

      • Andre 5.1.2

        Seems to me the best way forward for progressive ideas is to focus on the contrast with Repug ideas, not to inflate the relatively small differences between the various Dem factions.

        For instance, the Repug position is they are quite happy with people getting bankrupted, unnecessarily suffering, and dying early because they can't afford healthcare. In that context, the difference is trivial between Medicare-for-all-who-want-it that is available to everyone but still allows the half of Americans with employer provided health insurance to keep it if they prefer, and a purist Medicare-for-all which bans private health insurance and forces everyone into government health care.

        In the context of trying to promote progressive ideas, it's entirely possible Sanders could do a lot more good lending his support to helping progressive challengers to crusty old forever-troughers in safe Dem seats, rather than continuing a doomed quest for his own presidential ambitions. If Sanders could make the difference in unseating the likes of Steny Hoyer and Richard Neal and replacing them with actual progressives, that would really be something.

        Then there's the risk that if Bernie continues his campaign way beyond the point of no real hope, then it might inflate the Bernie-or-bust types, who would then go on to undermine Biden in the general election. Thereby depressing Dem vote, inflating third party vote, and widening Don the Con's path to re-election. As happened in 2016, likely contributing to the poor showing for House and Senate candidates as well as Hillary's surprise loss.

    • Ad 5.2

      Biden needs to move on his VP pick pronto. He's already promised it will be a female.

      Warren would be a useful choice to restructure and re-regulate the economy after this mess. Although unlikely since she’s not supporting him (or Sanders).

      Catherine Cortez Mastro needs to be in the mix.

      • Andre 5.2.1

        I reckon Warren would get a lot more done as Treasury Secretary.

        This piece has a bunch of thumbnails of the probable top 12. It ranks Kamala Harris #1. Since there's a reasonable chance Biden would only go one term, that makes the VP pick this time around the most likely Dem nominee for 2024, and Harris strikes me as the most credible candidate for prez.

      • Siobhan 5.2.2

        Warren came third in her own State primaries..even Warren voters have seen through her..

        Though I'm sure her lack of support for Sanders is more than enough to keep Biden happy.

      • McFlock 5.2.3

        I'd love it to be Warren, but … I suspect it will be Klobuchar. That pre-Super Tuesday endorsement.

  6. Adam Ash 6

    So how do y'all Jacinda-lovers reconcile the terrifying disconnection between her words "Toughest controls in the world" and the reality that travellers are finding as they enter New Zealand?

    Coronavirus: Auckland woman Maree Glading disappointed in checks at international arrivals

    This is just one of many reports of what is (not) going on at our borders; there is no effective control to prevent entry of people even if they are symptomatic. There is absolutely NO control to prevent asymptomatic people entering the county just now. Effectively, our borders are wide open, and virus-laden travellers can be circulating wherever they choose – on public transport, domestic air and tourist and business destinations.

    Until we see a tightening of the border – preferably close all incoming flights – the PM's words are frighteningly empty.

    This is not a time for endless posidivity (words), it is a time to shut the gate (action)

    • KJT 6.1

      The woman complaining, must have been totally isolated in her own bubble, not to have seen all the information the MOH, and border control have out there. Only a few clicks away.

      Seems more like a National voter trying to play a Simon Bridges, gambit.

      • Anne 6.1.1

        Seems more like a National voter trying to play a Simon Bridges, gambit.

        Yes. My thoughts too.

        From the thousands of travellers who have arrived in NZ in the past week or so (many of them NZers returning home), only a handful seem to have had this 'experience' and funnily enough they don't seem to come to public notice until Simon Bridges brings them up at QT time in the House.

      • bwaghorn 6.1.2

        I bet if she had to sit in a little cubicle for 8 hours while every arriving passenger was given the 3rd degree shed be moaning louder . Moaners gunna moan

    • weka 6.2

      Our borders aren't wide open. They weren't even that before covid. I think that rhetoric doesn't serve us either.

      There are others who can speak to this more here, but this is about minimising risk within the constraints of a system. If we shut things down too fast or unprepared there are other consequences eg the call to shut down schools pretty quickly leads to a conversation about childcare and how that would work in covid terms. The state is instead working with what is most likely to work in the real world. Yes, mistakes will be made, we're all humans here. But I'm seeing a govt that is responsive and working very hard to get this right and mostly succeeding.Lots of what we do now will be not ideal, but still better than the other thing.

      One consequence of shutting down all flights is if this is done before other supply chains are set up, what happens to essential goods like medical supplies, pharmaceuticals, that crucial part in the a power generation plant that suddenly failed unexpectedly. There will be many examples, and until we can replace those import systems we need some planes flying.

      There's also some obligation to NZers trying to get back home.

      I saw the woman's post yesterday. It needs fact checking.

      • ianmac 6.2.1

        She was on Morning Report this morning. Her description seemed to be self defeating. No information given but notices handed out and officials shouting instructions.

        https://www.rnz.co.nz/audio/player?audio_id=2018739156

        • In Vino 6.2.1.1

          Probably back at school she used to claim that teachers shouted at her and ignored her.

      • Janet 6.2.2

        Wan,t thinking shut down freighting of goods. just freighting of people !

        • weka 6.2.2.1

          How would you do that? If you shut down the commercial people flights today, how do all the essential goods coming into the country over the next week get here? I'm betting there are materials for covid tests on some of those flights.

          We can shut down flights, and I'd wager good money that the government is planning in case that becomes necessary, but it takes time for all the reasons I've explained already.

          • Janet 6.2.2.1.1

            Freight could sit on seats too you know …. where there is a will there is a way. There seem to have been no will.

            • Jilly Bee 6.2.2.1.1.1

              And if the flight hit some heavy turbulence – all hell could break loose. Yeah, nah.

      • Matiri. 6.2.3

        This does need fact checking – this woman is a marketing professional, all her words are carefully chosen.

        • weka 6.2.3.1

          yep. If she'd come onto TS with that story people would have been all over it for the problems with what she said.

        • tc 6.2.3.2

          something RNZ should do before giving her the soapbox, but then it's a pathetic excuse for a broadcaster with gluon and susie still around.

        • patricia 6.2.3.3

          I find it interesting that part of the bail out for Air NZ, is paying for security.

      • Adam Ash 6.2.4

        You avoid the fact that there have been a number of similar reports where Border Control does not seem to be taking this seriously enough, in the opinions of several travellers who have experienced what other countries are doing. No point shooting this particular messenger – there are plenty more saying the same thing.

        In 20 days time we shall see who is right, shan't we? Those who cried for moderation in the response, or those who begged that the issue be hit as hard as possible as early as possible.

        The cost of getting it wrong will be measured in the unnecessary premature deaths of New Zealand citizens.

        • observer 6.2.4.1

          If you want to bring about a change to the current protocols, and save lives, then obviously Open Mike on The Standard is the best place to do that.

        • Janet 6.2.4.2

          A very expensive stupid mistake / deliberate trade off decision, that could have been prevented early February by shutting the borders then of OUR ISLAND NATION. Unlike a place like Switzerland where 170,000 people cross the border from Italy per day o work in Switzerland …..

        • weka 6.2.4.3

          "You avoid the fact that there have been a number of similar reports where Border Control does not seem to be taking this seriously enough, in the opinions of several travellers who have experienced what other countries are doing"

          I didn't ignore those, I'm sure there are those accounts, feel free to share some and we'll address those too.

          The internet is full of reckons right now. We can't base emergency policy on that, although I'm sure that the relevant authorities will be checking their processes.

          You however are conflating two things: the fails in an otherwise appropriate system, with the need to have completely closed borders. In your argument you are avoiding the issues that I raised, those of unintended consequences. Do you know the impact of shutting down all incoming flights and shipping this week? What happens if of the 80,000 NZers overseas 1,000 of them are nurses and doctors trying to get home? Or even 100.

          "No point shooting this particular messenger – there are plenty more saying the same thing."

          I'm not shooting you, I'm making a cogent argument to address the points you raised. This is what we do here.

          "In 20 days time we shall see who is right, shan't we? Those who cried for moderation in the response, or those who begged that the issue be hit as hard as possible as early as possible"

          People who say told you so at that point are still largely ignorant of the points I raised above and there will be literally no way to know if shutting down the ports and airports this week would have been a better option. Points which lots of people are saying btw, including those with actual expertise.

          I didn’t call for moderation btw, you seem to have misunderstood what I said.

    • Sanctuary 6.3

      Why has this uninformed reckon got so much coverage? Because she planned it. Check her FB page, she has done a full scale media release blitz. Maree Glading is a hard core National supporter who knows how to self-publicise, she got all sorts of soft interviews for pie business when she set it up – she is clearly well connected in the Auckland high-Tory circles (which includes most of the NZ Herald).

      It should be no surprise to anyone that a well connected rich white women has no trouble getting an unverified reckon published uncritically in the Herald, that is how that paper works.

      But next time Shayne Currie and Duncan Grieve and Toby Manhire ad neseum have a whine about the decline of journalism, this piece of stinking class biased fake news should be raised.

    • observer 6.4

      The same letter was read out by Duncan Garner on the AM show this morning. Ashley Bloomfield addressed it calmly.

      Reducing the discussion to "Jacinda-lovers" isn't helping. This is a massive challenge and the work isn't being done by headlines and slogans – it's being done by well-qualified, overworked, tired people. Who are contributing far more to the common good than commentators with instant reckons.

      If the DG of health and medical professionals told the PM to (e.g.) close the airports do you think she would casually ignore him? Do you think the staff would remain silent? It's not Chernobyl in the USSR.

      It is certain that procedures will change as the situation evolves. It is (almost) certain that people will die. Even martial law and a curfew wouldn't prevent that.

      • weka 6.4.1

        "It is (almost) certain that people will die"

        I'm wondering what the analysis is around that, in terms of bigger picture issues. We can of course crash the economy, and I'm sure that if was the bubonic plague that was going to kill half the population we'd have done that already. But crashing the economy brings death too, especially if other countries follow suit.

        Our best case scenario here is that we contain cv, but it's more likely that it will eventually be in the community and that we will have flattened the curve to significantly minimise deaths.

    • Bruce 6.5

      I don't read herald but RNZ has a similar story and the family said they felt safer in Thailand. In Thailand the heroin smuggling MP’s aide has been caught hoarding face masks for sale to China for personal gain,

      https://thaipoliticalprisoners.wordpress.com/2020/03/12/masking/

      Talk about keeping your head firmly in the sand,

    • swordfish 6.6

      Adam Ash

      Yep … a whole series of Countries are now closing their borders & it's becoming more & more evident that a major lockdown is the only way to defeat this virus. The earlier the better.

      WHO Executive Director, Dr Michael Ryan:

      You need to act quickly, you need to go after the virus. You need to stop the chains of transmission … the lessons I've learned after so many Ebola outbreaks in my career are be fast, have no regrets, you must be the first mover. The virus will always get you if you don't move quickly … if you need to be right before you move – you will never win. Perfection is the enemy of the good … speed trumps perfection. .And the problem we have at the moment is that everyone is afraid of making a mistake, everyone is afraid of the consequence of error. But the greatest error is not to move, the greatest error is to be paralysed by the fear of failure.

      We need exhaustive testing & contact tracing … but. failing that, a complete lockdown.

      So many Western Govts (including our own) have been just pissing around with COVID-19, this idea that you can roll out some sort of finely-tuned, wonderfully-nuanced, carefully calibrated plan in a series of discrete little stages … dangerously stupid people deluding themselves that they have some kind of control over Coronavirus. They soooo fucking don't.

  7. joe90 7

    Oh joy, self declared wartime president invoking wartime act[s] to fight a Chinese virus riffs on punishment with this shit going on in the background.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-usa-trump-act/trump-says-he-will-invoke-wartime-act-to-fight-enemy-coronavirus-idUSKBN2152XL

  8. Sanctuary 8

    People are apparently panicking – friends of mine report chaos at supermarkets.

    This is a serious question – should we start considering censorship of the media? Is the panicking mongering click bait reckons of dickheads "news" or an irresponsible luxury we can't affford just now?

    • The Al1en 8.1

      Went to a slack n slave in Hamilton last night and couldn't even buy a tin of baked beans, all brands, shelves cleared. Spent most of my time at the checkout asking people with loaded trolleys if they think they've horded enough yet or will they need to make another run at it.

      • Stunned Mullet 8.1.1

        lol – I've taken to doing most of my shopping with the local butcher, fruit and vegetable shop, weekend markets etc supporting local.

        The nutters at the supermarkets can get bent.

        • The Al1en 8.1.1.1

          What makes it worse, now I'm flying solo with the kid at uni and fortunate enough to always work alone, practising social distancing, the supermarket is my main entryway for covid 19. Sucks to increase my exposure at long queues while not even being able to get the one thing I really came in for.

          • weka 8.1.1.1.1

            that does really suck. Are the supermarkets getting peaks and waves, or is it crowded all the time?

            • The Al1en 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Can't speak to regular office hours, but I have noticed large queues during off peak times over the past couple of weeks, though no bare shelves until yesterday.

            • Andre 8.1.1.1.1.2

              Just went to the Lincoln Rd Pak'n'save coz around now is usually a quietish time. Holy fuck! I didn't even bother going in, there were cars circling the carpark looking for a space.

              I might end up chewing through my emergency supplies and outdoor activity food waiting for the wave of panic buying to pass.

            • Macro 8.1.1.1.1.3

              I went down to my local supermarket today to buy a few items. The queues were unbelievable! This in a town of 8000+ people. I have never seen anything like the chaos. Not even during the christmas rush, when those travelling to the beach for the holidays call in for their supplies – . Almost all out of towners stocking up for god knows what reason. Apparently it has been like this all week. On the way out I met one of our practise nurses from the local medical centre about to go in to do her shopping and mentioned – "its just madness in there" "Yes" she said "You wonder why and what they think they are achieving when this is going to go on for months." Exactly.

              I called in to the local butcher on the way home . She was saying that the shop had been inundated earlier with people buying up large. She was worried she would run out for her local customers.

        • Rosemary McDonald 8.1.1.2

          SM. Gladdens my heart you can a) afford to shop at the costlier speciality stores rather than the supermarket and b) you deign to grace TS with your exalted presence. Don't you have investments go check or something?

          All the best,

          Nutter.

          • Stunned mullet 8.1.1.2.1

            @ Rosemary

            The fruit and vegetables shops where i live are often better quality and cheaper than the supermarket as are the weekend markets.

            The butchers are more expensive but much better quality and I eat far less meat these days so choose to support local business over the large supermarket chains.

            If all that makes me a nutter and least I'm happy in my madness.

            • Rosemary McDonald 8.1.1.2.1.1

              SM. Have another read Possum.

              I signed off as "Nutter" having just 'done' New World.

              Nowhere did I call you a nutter…au contraire…you are the one casting aspersions on the sanity of others.

              Sighs.

              Rolls eyes.

              Despairs of commenters who can't bleeding read.

              • weka

                Can we agree we are all nutters then? Maybe consider that we could ease up a bit on each other too? The points being made seem sound, the poking at each other is probably not the best strategy for us at this time.

              • Stunned mullet

                @ Rosemary – apologies for misunderstanding your signoff.

                Also I did not accuse you of being a nutter, just those who are in a frenzy of toilet roll and bottled water hoarding.

              • The Al1en

                New World is much more expensive than pak n save.

                You shop like you aren't even watching the pennies.

                Hey, big spender, drop it like it's hot.

                • weka

                  Some places, lots, don't have a Pak n Save 😉

                  • The Al1en

                    Hamilton does, though, two of them. yes

                    • Rosemary McDonald

                      Shame on me.

                      Of course, you are fully aware of my circumstances that you pass judgement, twice, for my disgraceful choices.

                      Being a Hamilton local you will be aware that both Pak n saves are at each end of city centre?

                      We're currently squatting with whanau in Nawton. I cannot get Peter from his wheelchair into the loaner vehicle we have, so made the call to make the quicker trip to Te Rapa NW rather than leave Peter alone for longer than absolutely necessary. Yes, cost a wee bit more, but cheap, in terms of safety.

                      And replenishing our hosts' cupboards is the least we can do in exchange for free board.

                      😉👍🙄

                    • The Al1en

                      Calm down, it was just a light hearted response to your nasty above, though you sure Mill st isn't closer? But lucky you went earlier, my sources tell me te rapa new world has just closed because they've run out of food.

      • KJT 8.1.2

        Got some funny looks yesterday.

        But, in fact our normal two weekly for 6 adults and two children, with a half a dozen cans added.

        The staff said big run on some things but restocked already.

        • Rosemary McDonald 8.1.2.1

          New World Te Rapa crowded this morning with non panicked shoppers of all ages.

          I did the trolly waltz with an older woman who laughingly canceled my license….then she accepted my excuse that I have never shopped in that particular supermarket before so if I was looking lost it was because I was.

          Had a couple of young fellows on because they had neglected to buy actual food food. Not even 2 minute noodles…🙄

          All very polite, if focused on our respective quarry.

          Best conversation was in the baby wipes section. Disability, housebus dwelling and baby wipes are an actual thing. The other shopper was near frantically rifling through the various brands looking for the baby unfriendly wipes…the ones not labeled "alcohol free'.

          "Might be good for baby's bum, but no use for sterilizing surfaces…!"

          I suggested dilute bleach and washable cloths…the sterilizing wipes having been snapped up days ago.

          Big ups to the supermarket staff. Respect. Shelves being restocked in a civilised manner and the checkout staff unflappably polite, quietly packing our goodies.

          Told them they were all kinds of awesome and I do believe it made their morning.

          • Anne 8.1.2.1.1

            Told them they were all kinds of awesome and I do believe it made their morning.

            Good on you. Our local operators have been amazing too. So on to it and doing a fantastic job calming angry, frustrated shoppers like me. It's taught me to appreciate their real worth – not that I didn't know it before – and make the effort to tell them.

    • Stunned Mullet 8.2

      I agree, the feelings are similar to yours in the UK.

      'I have spent days and days trying to calm down nearest and dearest, especially my Mum, who is scared shitless that her days are numbered due to her age and the fact she has asthma and borderline COPD. I know precisely why – because every fucking five minutes on BBC news (which she watches every evening) they are banging on about the number of deaths, details about those who have died, speculation as to how many more will die…….doom, doom and more fucking doom.

      They fucking drone on about panic buying and how the public are going bat shit crazy, but who is stoking that fire and creating that panic? Yeah, that is right, you F… a…. c….s – YOU!!!

    • SPC 8.3

      It's probably time for the government to look at the issue of equal access to supermarkets to reassure people about provisions in future.

      I would suggest something like allocating days of the week for shopping – in store, or on-line. Based around the first letter of the surname – proof of ID at checkout for this (they already have surnames for on-line).

      1/7th, or so, for each of the days.

      Just the idea of such a system being considered/developed might be enough to reduce panic buying now.

      • weka 8.3.1

        good idea.

        I live in the provinces and am not hearing of this in the smaller places.

        I think some public education would be good too, but I'm guessing the govt is swamped with tasks at the moment. The MSM should be doing this.

      • Sanctuary 8.3.2

        "…It's probably time for the government to look at the issue of equal access to supermarkets to reassure people about provisions in future…"

        You mean rationing?

        • weka 8.3.2.1

          stores could actually do this without the state mandating it. They can do this to manage their supply lines. They can also prioritise goods for people with special needs. eg online shopping for people that shouldn't be exposed to cv, young mums, elderly, disabled and so on.

          • Adrian 8.3.2.1.1

            Maree Glading would probably shit herself if she knew how much was known about her condition and history before she got to the last door. The other night on TV news there was a shot over a techies shoulder of a monitor showing a black and white image of disembarking passengers. There is some pretty impressive gear there at Customs/Immigration. Also the intuition and experience of the staff is bloody amazing. She is a dopey bullshitter.

            The number of people with C-19 arrival is a lot less than 1 in God knows how many thousands. And anybody with a temperature probably only has a cold. As long ago as 3 weeks ago a mate pulled aside a few people in the course of a day who had appeared to have a temperature, they were overdressed for an Auckland summer but OK for a cool aircraft cabin so the C/I staff let them rest in a room and dress lighter and retested them again, all were OK.

            We are going to be alright, we are well looked after by people we don't even know we have to thank.

            • weka 8.3.2.1.1.1

              "we are well looked after by people we don't even know we have to thank."

              So mindful of this among all the criticism.

              I was really impressed that they quarantined the two tourists who had no self isolation plan and then will just deport them. That's not mucking around

        • Incognito 8.3.2.2

          More like flattening the curve.

          • weka 8.3.2.2.1

            heh.

            • weka 8.3.2.2.1.1

              now I want to write a post about flattening the grocery curve.

              • Incognito

                cool

                • weka

                  I gave it a mention in a post just now, but it deserves wider exploration and attention.

              • Poission

                In CHCH a number of factories are now working extended weekend shifts to meet both local and export demand for FMCG.

                First time they have had overtime for two years (double bubble at weekends)

                The significant depreciation of the NZ$ (and supply shocks) is having and effect (read localism)

                • weka

                  this is good because it's extra work/income for people and keeping businesses in good shape?

                  • Poission

                    A factory manager I was talking to,gave me an example of one teen(they took on at Xmas 17 yr) was employed because he was to be the bread winner of a family of 6.He is taking home at present an xtra 500$.

                    The manager said that pricing differentials meant their products were now significantly cheaper,then overseas products.

        • mauī 8.3.2.3

          We will have rationing by the end of the week. Thank you glorious comrade Ardernsky.

        • weka 8.3.2.4

    • mauī 8.5

      On the contrary the MoH couldn't ask for a better social distancing campaign and they got it for free too.

    • weka 8.6

      I'd like to see an analysis of how bad it is. The Herald can go get fucked. What are the TV networks doing? RNZ? Commercial radio.

      I think censorship is a step too far right now, but there could be public education plans.

      Btw, for the convo upthread, know what would really send large part of the population into panic? Shutting the borders completely and too fast and having medical supply and other shortages as a result.

      • Incognito 8.6.1

        Without trying to sound arrogant, a number of comments don’t even sound ill-advised but as not thought through at all and based on ignorance and fear (possibly with some anger). It’s ok to vent IMO, but some here, at least, are skirting close to appointing blame for deaths, for example, that have not even occurred yet. All action so far has been aimed at containment, i.e. preventing the disease spreading and causing major mayhem.

        • weka 8.6.1.1

          Lots of people are super stressed for sure. I am, and I have decent enough skills around stress and survival issues, I can imagine that for people who aren't used to having to think about these things they're in a fair amount of chaos (hence panic buying, and blame*). There's a thing going on about whether the pandemic is bringing out the worst in people or the best. I'm aiming for the best for myself, but I am being tested on this for sure.

          *I also think we have this in the culture anyway, including in political spaces.

    • xanthe 8.7

      "should we start considering censorship of the media?"

      This question has been bothering me for some time now short answer is yes something must be done and not just because of covid19. (those of you who scream straw horses at me will be ignored we need a proper discussion on this!)

      I have been thinking about this one for some time and the only solution I can see that (could) work without immediate descent into state censorship of unpopular views is some sort of external set of editorial standards

      a couple of areas to start is clearly labeling NEWS as different analysis as different from opinion as different from attempted influencing. (an example here would be hoskings currently labeled as "opinion" it is not and should be clearly labeled "attempted influencing")

      another area is press conferences if you ask a question in a press conference that is not intended to elicit some new piece of information you get a black mark. do it three times and you are not invited back.

      these are just very basic ideas as a starting point that need collective work to become some sort of workable policy but one thing that is certain we cannot continue with the current media crap and if we dont sort it out in a reasonable and fair way we will end up with state censorship which will ultimately be worse.

      there is another option and we need to find it.

      • Adam Ash 8.7.1

        Wot. Are you saying we should add to the already considerable list of things we are prohibited from honestly talking about in New Zealand after the Chch debacle? The thing that is required right now is the ability to vigorously discuss our predicament and how we deal with it. If we censor any perspective we risk missing essential views of other people who think differently from us which may save us from painting ourselves into a dangerous corner.

        • xanthe 8.7.1.1

          ahh but i am not suggesting prohibiting any subject of discussion just suggesting a set of editorial standards ie visible correct and accurate labeling and separation of News , analysis, opinion, or bullshit. If you want to be a "news" outlet with journalistic privilege you follow that standard. to be "journalism" it needs to be based on facts

          • In Vino 8.7.1.1.1

            Adam Ash is transparent. He wants his right to troll.

            • Incognito 8.7.1.1.1.1

              Let’s assume he’s as anxious as anybody else now, please.

            • Adam Ash 8.7.1.1.1.2

              Troll be b*ggered! I like this blog because I find contributors to be intelligent and relatively open to changing their minds if the evidence is sound, as am I. Like many, I am treading the fine line between panic at the social and economic horror and anger at the ineptitude of those in whom we place our trust to keep us safe. I welcome all points of view, as I hope my contributions are of service too

    • RedLogix 8.8

      I don't know, we spent six weeks ignoring the logical consequences of what some people were trying to say in late January. Specifically that the silent transmission characteristic of this virus made it different to almost anything we've encountered before.

      And now mid March I'm still hearing people downplaying this. It takes some people a full kick to the nuts to clear the wax from their ears.

      So having frittered away the best opportunity to suppress this virus at relatively low cost, we now have to pay the higher price. Tough.

  9. SPC 9

    Pandemic lessons learnt so far

    1. There needs to be spare medical equipment stored as part of planning for one.

    2. There should be enough testing capacity for the tracking testing necessary to prevent community spread AND community spread sampling to reassure the public so that (they and) the government would know there was community spread soon after it occurred. The latter reduces fear, the former is the means to prevent community spread.

    Lesson from China

    It is easier to contain it if you have a central source area to contain it in. It is harder when it is coming at you from multiple places (business and personal travel)

    • weka 9.1

      Yes. I think those of us that can need to start now with the staying home (mostly) and making that cultural shift. It takes time to adjust to this and if some are starting now it will be easier for others to make that change too.

    • JO 9.2

      This Washington Post article by Beth Cameron is excellent, detailed and informative:

      When President Trump took office in 2017, the White House's National Security Council Directorate for Global Health Security and Biodefense survived the transition intact. Its mission was the same as when I was asked to lead the office, established after the Ebola epidemic of 2014: to do everything possible within the vast powers and resources of the U.S. government to prepare for the next disease outbreak and prevent it from becoming an epidemic or pandemic.

      One year later, I was mystified when the White House dissolved the office, leaving the country less prepared for pandemics like Covid-19.

      The U.S. government's slow and inadequate response to the new coronavirus underscores the need for organised, accountable leadership to prepare for and respond to pandemic threats.

      https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm

  10. joe90 10

    All class.

    /

    .

    • joe90 11.1

      Not satire; the pricks who spent billions on stock buybacks and then rather than investing in building a new aircraft, recycled one from the sixties and it killed several hundred people. Now they want money.

      • joe90 11.1.1

        And if there's any doubt about just how craven the fuckers are, a little more than 11 million people because 'bidness.

  11. RedBaronCV 12

    Looks like Elizabeth Warren is onto it in the USA. An eight point plan for companies who receive taxpayer funds. Maintain payroll, pay minimum wage, maintain collective bargaining, chop executive bonuses, etc.

    Hope plenty of strings are attached here. Collective bargaining to be the norm, worker seats on the board , executive compensation to be dropped, working hour reductions to be spread.

    ]And it would be even better if Air NZ stopped saying it needed to lose 30% of its jobs and said 30% of the hours worked. Still seems low – an 85% service reduction is mooted.

  12. Herodotus 13

    I am already reading reports of how quickly the environment is reacting ( fish returning to waterways) to the dramatic reduction of human activity.

    One positive of our current situation will be to read what reduction of co2 and other gases and see how any reduction follows predictions/models. Perhaps we underestimate the eco system to rebound or recalibrate. But not to take any reduction as an excuse to continue on our destructive manner.

  13. I can't help notice that the regulars here who for years have implicitly argued that we had to 'smash capitalism' and 'hit the big reset button' on our modern industrial economy … are now all very worried for themselves now an actual event threatens to disrupt our world.

    Sometimes you should be careful what you wish for.

    • Incognito 14.1

      There’s a subtle difference between a controlled burn off and an out-of-control large fire that threatens to engulf and destroy everything in its path.

      • RedLogix 14.1.1

        Fair point, although as someone familiar with the insanely complex industrial systems on which the modern world is is built, I was always dubious that the left's ideology was sufficiently nuanced to accomplish the kind of 'controlled burn off' you have in mind.

        • Incognito 14.1.1.1

          You should try Systems Biology 😉

          I have no burn off in mind; I’m more of an evolutionary type 😉

          • RedLogix 14.1.1.1.1

            As I am too; very much so.

            If nothing else this should underline to us all the huge damage uncontrolled shocks can cause. Whacking complex systems with big hammers, never makes anything better.

            • Incognito 14.1.1.1.1.1

              If you could do it under experimental/lab conditions with a realistic empirical model (akin earthquake testing of buildings & structures) it could be informative. Alternatively, Kobayashi Maru 😉

            • KJT 14.1.1.1.1.2

              We have already done that.

              With the Neo-liberal unbridled capitalism, hammer.

              Certainly right wing ideology has been conclusively proven to be much worse than “insufficiently nuanced”.

              But. That was a right wing revolution, so "it is fine" no matter how destructive it has proven to be.

              All the deaths, poverty disease and destruction it is causing is ignored.

              Until when when something like coronavirus, or financial meltdowns, happens. Then all the individual responsibility, give me freedom to rip everyone else off, capitalists, suddenly become keen on socialism and State control. But, only to protect themselves, you notice. The amount of people on Facebook wanting social welfare for their business, but "fuck beneficiaries" and the already disadvantaged, is embarrassing.

        • Siobhan 14.1.1.2

          The Left are really very very mild, and are pushing for controled change.

          The refusal to take that on at anything other than a snails pace..a snails pace made redundant by the rapidly evolving Climate Change and Money/Power grab of the Corporations and super rich (who come out of these crises very nicely) ..are what make real, violent Revolution and the ensuing chaos all the more inevitable down the line

          • KJT 14.1.1.2.1

            The "left" at least in New Zealand are all for controlled change, democratically controlled and based on evidence.

            I've seen very few arguing for a revolution. Most are after solutions that have been proven to work, already

            It was the "right" who bought in disaster capitalism by stealth in the 80's and 90's. A violent revolution, that is killing people in much greater numbers than coronavirus, still.

    • Macro 14.2

      Elizabeth Warren has a Plan For That.

      As Andre suggests if Biden gets the nod and chooses someone like Kamala Harris as his running mate, Elizabeth Warren would be an excellent choice for the Treasury. She has a very good history of achievement in introducing valuable change particularly following the GFC.

      • RedLogix 14.2.1

        The intro looks interesting, but sadly it's paywalled. I've no objection to detailed, organic plans that allow for nuance and complexity, plans that encourage and incentivise evolution.

        It's the ideological 'take a big hammer to it all' types that irk me.

    • adam 14.3

      Not me I not worried, I still say, let the system fall.

      But it's not going to – the best we can hope for is that people stop worshiping the elites/managerial/technocrat class like gods, and actually start to think and do for themselves.

      Because just in case you missed it – the orange one started a bombing campaign in Iran last week which was huge.

      And whilst the supply train is currently broken in China, it will be fixed. The fact that growth is not going to be world killing will be a good thing long term.

      This is not the end of capitalism, far from it.

      Just more step in the crap (shocks) and insanity (wreaking) we have to survive through whilst it dies.

      As for blaming those with no power in this demise, is a really shitty case of punching down.

  14. I know these guys are way too white and privileged to suit the ideology of many people here, but it's 8 minutes of good thinking:



  15. Fireblade 16

    Eight new Covid-19 cases in NZ.

    From Newshub:
    All relate to overseas travel, which Director-General Dr Ashley Bloomfield says shows New Zealand does not yet have any recorded community transmission. Close contact tracing is underway.

    Of the eight new cases, two are in Southland, two in Taranaki, one in Rotorua, two in Auckland and one in Northland.

    https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/new-zealand/2020/03/coronavirus-eight-new-cases-in-new-zealand1.html

    • McFlock 16.1

      All from international travel, and we're getting to the period where anyone who gets it from overseas should have gone straight into isolation, thus limiting the close contacts.

      Really, the only slight misstep I can see the government making was the announcement of the isolation requirement a couple of days before it was implemented, leading to people rushing to get back before they "had to" go into isolation. Not as serious as the Lombardy lockdown plans being leaked so people fled throughout Italy, though.

      • weka 16.1.1

        would you expect infection rate to decrease soon then (assuming it's not in the community)?

        • McFlock 16.1.1.1

          Forward modelling isn't my field (but I can backward trend with the best of 'em 🙂 ), but it's largely a function of travel numbers and proportion of longer term stays in NZ.

          Assuming no community outbreak, I'd expect increasing overseas-sourced cases daily over the next week or two, especially as testing abilities ramp up. The reverse-diaspora and longer term stays in NZ to allow symptoms to develop, reflecting a lag on the conditions that prevailed in the country they departed from.

          As someone put it, in 6-8 weeks the world went from "we might have a problem" to "I might starve, but I refuse to die with an unwiped ass".

          We might still be lucky. We'll see if the incoming cases peak soon.

    • aj 16.2

      Correction: Queenstown and Dunedin. Not 'Southland'

  16. weka 17

    Four tweets, nailed it.

  17. joe90 18

    Large scale testing, please.

    While Italy is currently the "worst-case scenario" for the United States, the small Italian town of Vò has not reported any new cases of COVID-19 since last Friday and the spread of the illness has been completely stopped there.

    Vò, a town of 3,300 just outside Venice, was part of an experiment that involved aggressive testing and quarantine measures. Every single resident was tested for coronavirus in late February when Northern Italy was first rocked by the outbreak, and three percent of inhabitants were found to be carrying the virus.

    Andrea Crisanti, an infections expert at Imperial College London, was involved with the experiment and told news outlets that half of the carriers exhibited no symptoms.

    “In the UK, there are a whole lot of infections that are completely ignored,” Crisanti told the Financial Times. “We were able to contain the outbreak here because we identified and eliminated the ‘submerged’ infections and isolated them. That is what makes the difference.”

    Anyone who tested positive was placed under quarantine, as were individuals that came into recent contact with the infected. The town's residents were then tested again 10 days later, and just .3 percent of the population was found to be carrying the virus. However, at least six infected individuals were asymptomatic and would not have been tested in most other countries.

    [''']

    Crisanti also warned Sky News that, "for every patient that shows symptoms for COVID-19 there were about 10 who don't."

    https://www.sfgate.com/coronavirus/article/Italian-town-experiment-coronavirus-testing-Vo-15141033.php

  18. observer 19

    All the Logan Park (Dunedin) tests are in: all negative.

    This is how the system works – resources are finite, while the population is infinite (literally, because you'd have to start again and re-check once the entire population had been tested).

    Tests don't happen just by thinking of a number and doubling it. Real people, working overtime and under great stress, are carrying out these tests. They deserve our thanks.

  19. sumsuch 20

    I know it's millions of deaths but when it comes down to it it's c. 3 % of the population. But we haven't had such an upset since Polio, TB or WW 2. And don't we need it. We've begun to think complacent comfort is a right, and the climate change cliff so near. This new war govt should continue on. Comfort-comfort-comfort kills alertness for survival. And, yes, we've never encountered a certainty of complete doom preceded by a decade or two of increasing comfort. Like those birds fooled by cuckoos to raise their chicks we can't deal with that fiddling with our genetic programme.

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