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Open mike 22/07/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 22nd, 2016 - 86 comments
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86 comments on “Open mike 22/07/2016”

  1. miravox 1

    so, is Donald Trump’s Vice presidential choice, the Koch brother-funded, tea party stalwart and neo-lib devotee, Mike Pence, the Machiavelli to Trump as Cheney was to Bush Jr?

  2. Paul 2

    Bill English has no answers to the housing crisis.
    Listening to him being interviewed on Morning Report revealed a complete lack of ideas.
    How on earth is this guy credited with any competence at all?
    Utterly useless.

    • TC 2.1

      Hes credited by the msm copy/pasting national spin.

      National run a very effective intimidation regime which gags fact based analysis on their performance.

      English has presided over a systematic sale of kiwi assets, bailed out a finance company he and key were told not to have in the guarantee scheme, done nothing about broadening the tax base and generally been the arrogant front of the hollowing out of the nz economy.

  3. mauī 3

    Women armed with tennis balls terrorise Republican convention (5 min clip). The absurd:

    • ianmac 3.1

      I suppose the police just have to follow orders. But the publicity on the World stage underlines the absurdity. So the consolation for the police is that they are doing something to further cause of dis-arming.

    • save nz 3.2

      Apparently they are all allowed guns in the protest, but toys are banned. The police rushed over to pepper spray their tennis ball protest against guns. Only in America!

      • Bill 3.2.1

        Hmm. Wonder what happens if you’re carrying a toy gun? Or maybe one that shoots splurge like in that old Bugsy Malone film? What if it fires out tennis balls – maybe a bit painful – or ping pong balls?

        • adam 3.2.1.1

          All criminal Bill.

          You will be arrested.

          • McFlock 3.2.1.1.1

            actually, that could be challengable, as long as the device propels a projectile. It’s the right to bear arms. Nerf guns might be defensible.

            • adam 3.2.1.1.1.1

              One simple sentence, with two different capitalisations and punctuation. Both recognised as part of the constitution. No wonder this is a headache.

              “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

              And the other

              “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

              Yeah I think it may be defensible, if you get to court. Before then, I was under the impression the police were running with everything is illegal, hence a crime, then they would arrest you.

  4. Paul 4

    Winston calls for English’s resignation.

    If you can’t provide adequate housing for yor citizens, you shouldn’t be in the business of government.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/309184/peters-calls-for-english-to-resign-over-housing-crisis

    • ianmac 4.1

      Winston can put across ideas so effectively. Who else can match him for colour. Key just mumbles and contradicts himself and dissembles.
      (And I don’t even vote for NZF,)

      • TC 4.1.1

        Simple, effective and delivered with a passion people can buy into.

        If only the rest of the opposition could do the same and stop lecturing voters to sleep. Twyford does good work but when the opportunity arises blows it with nerdy unecessary statements rather than short snappy soundbites.

        Learn from the master lab/greens ! Expose the sellouts for what they are.

  5. Ad 5

    I’ve wondered over the last 48 hours whether the uproar at the Republican Convention would more hurt or hinder their electoral chances overall. My view now is it’s been overwhelmingly positive.

    Trump and Cruz are speaking a very precise populist dialect, which has been honed by professional wrestling. It’s about the feuds; whether one wife has perkier tits than the other, their father a wastrel, one family’s makeup and wardrobe tattier than the other, one verbal beat-down more spectacular than the next. This stuff inspires legendary feuds and legendary followers.

    As a reality television star, Donald Trump is the Masked Undertaker taking down the era of austerity, surveillance, neoliberal nightmares, zero class mobility, broken Washington, global anxiety, all mixed with the race hotsauce of rage, guns, and protecting the Poh-lice.

    …. and gets to do it with one arm holding the hot girl, flying the best jets, quaffing the most expensive stuff, and the other hand grasping the pistol that will shoot down anyone stopping America being Great Again.

    Cruz gets all that, and is ready for 2020.

    No, I don’t think Trump’ll win. But it will be close. He’ll lose mostly on the ground-and-pound than on the standup ie he’s left it too late to get up his vote-gathering infrastructure. But he’s a big lesson for the left: forget the facts and become the fictional star we want you to be.

    Ah-Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrghhhhhhhhh
    Ah-Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrghhhhhhhhh

    Ah-RRRRRRR!!!!

    • adam 5.1

      Glad you noticed the nutter (drumpf) does not play the game like everyone else.

      He has the whole Republican machine to help him, with all those bodies on the ground Ad. Just to cause you nightmares – sorry dude.

      He has gone for the money with his V.P choice, and lets not even go to the place where by people on the right in the USA, hate Clinton.

      It’s theater, ratings, and a show. And it works best when it is all flash and no substance.

      So I’m sorry, I think the muppet will win.

      This is how empires fall – slowly, and with stupid out in front.

  6. Xanthe 6

    Anyone else feel the deep sense of unease about the police methods to “get their latest child killer”
    Deeply unethical,
    Unsafe conviction

    What does it say about our judiciary that they go along with this shit

    • Puckish Rogue 6.2

      They got the highest permission possible and no laws appear to have been broken so its all good, would you rather the child killer remain free?

      • joe90 6.2.1

        Apparently there’s no need to obtain a warrant so whose permission did they obtain?.

        • Puckish Rogue 6.2.1.1

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11678728

          • It must be authorised at the most senior levels within the police force and must only be used as “a last resort” when other investigative options have been exhausted.

          • joe90 6.2.1.1.1

            • It must be authorised at the most senior levels within the police force and must only be used as “a last resort” when other investigative options have been exhausted.

            So, despite their inability to gather enough evidence to convict him you’re okay with police brass saying fuck it, this scrote is as guilty as sin so let’s bypass the judiciary, throw any ethics we have out the window and go get him?.

            • Puckish Rogue 6.2.1.1.1.1

              There are times the police can only gather so much evidence and they need a confession, think the Kahui twins case, so they used methods that haven’t been found to be illegal, that have been scrutinized by legal experts and have found the person that killed the child

              So, in summary, yes

              • joe90

                Legal experts ain’t the courts and a police force going about it’s business without judicial oversight is okay by you.

                What could possibly go wrong…
                /

                https://www.aidwyc.org/cases/historical/kyle-unger/

                • Puckish Rogue

                  If the police are found to have broken any laws in this case then I’d expect them to be punished and because of the unusual circumstances in gaining the conviction I’m sure the case will be looked at

                  • joe90

                    If the police are found to have broken any laws in this case then I’d expect them to be punished

                    Detective Superintendent Rod Drew and Senior Sergeant Warren Olsson broke the law with impunity.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      So does that mean this case is unlawful?

                    • joe90

                      Precedent says unlawful or not, they’ll most likely be able to thumb their noses at the law.

                    • Puckish Rogue

                      How about innocent until proven guilty or does that not apply to the police?

                    • joe90

                      Neither Drew nor Olsson were charged over the forging of a court officials signature so obviously some are above the law.

                  • Xanthe

                    PR You seem to be saying that the police have no obligation to be ethical….. only lawful.. or do you conflate the two?
                    Do you think the process to gain the conviction we are discussing was ethical?
                    Do you perhaps think it was not ethical but somehow justified because a baby had died?

    • Muttonbird 6.3

      It’s weird they manufactured crime in order to get a confession. Seems a very elaborate and very expensive use of police time to me.

      • Puckish Rogue 6.3.1

        So you’d rather have a child murderer walking around free?

        • Muttonbird 6.3.1.1

          Of course not. This scheme seems overly elaborate and expensive and based upon an American crime show rather than sustainable policing methods. The conviction looks shaky too.

          No, I’d rather see the current government do something about the underlying causes of child abuse instead of paying lip-service to it. Under the current government New Zealand has climbed to the number one ranking for child abuse – not something to be proud of.

          This undercover operation is but an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff.

          • Puckish Rogue 6.3.1.1.1

            No, I’d rather see the current government do something about the underlying causes of child abuse instead of paying lip-service to it. Under the current government New Zealand has climbed to the number one ranking for child abuse – not something to be proud of

            – that’s all very well and good but it probably wouldn’t have stopped this guy and it certainly wouldn’t have gained a conviction

          • McFlock 6.3.1.1.2

            why is the conviction shaky? The supreme court said it was ok.

            I’m not entirely happy with using it to just get a confession, but another guy done for it actually led the undercover cops to the body, so in that one I was happier.

            But confessions when combined with high-resource operations give the cops an incentive, even an unconscious one, to justify the resources they allocated. Leading questions, salted information, that sort of thing.

            • Muttonbird 6.3.1.1.2.1

              why is the conviction shaky? The supreme court said it was ok.

              Through the High Court, Court of Appeal, and Supreme Court (the decision of which was split). Plenty of contention there.

              • McFlock

                still the final decision went to the prosecution in the SC.

                Sort of firms it up a bit.

    • Molly 6.4

      Thanks for the heads up Xanthe.

      Yes, I do feel unease about the police methods as they have been reported in the article.

      (It is unlikely that the police will have a psychologist look into how much they need a confession as time goes by – given the energy and focus invested in obtaining one.)

      • Puckish Rogue 6.4.1

        I’d feel more unease with the thought the murderer was walking around free

        • Muttonbird 6.4.1.1

          He was convicted of manslaughter, btw.

          • Psycho Milt 6.4.1.1.1

            The courts necessarily have a much higher threshold for what constitutes murder than personal opinion does. This guy’s a murderer no matter what he got convicted for.

            • marty mars 6.4.1.1.1.1

              wtf – “This guy’s a murderer no matter what he got convicted for.” You are such a BADARSE – lol – what a noggin

              • Why wtf? According to the courts, Peter Ellis is a child molester, but fucked if I’d ever call him one. Likewise, according to the courts this guy who shook a baby to death isn’t a murderer, but I’m happy to call him one.

          • Puckish Rogue 6.4.1.1.2

            Oh well pardon me, I’m sure that’s a great comfort to the deceased or the deceased’s family

            • Muttonbird 6.4.1.1.2.1

              *shrugs* Just pointing out the facts.

              On Psycho Milt’s position, John Banks is a crooked bastard no matter what he got convicted or not convicted for. Personal opinion, of course.

  7. save nz 7

    Is this true? Apparently at the same time as the US warship is here, we are having a weapons conference of 500 delegates at the Aotea Centre? Including Lockheed Martin, Serco etc…

    http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2016/07/22/america-sends-a-warship-while-trying-to-seize-our-economic-and-political-sovereignty/

  8. Morrissey 9

    Hapless Cleveland cops ordered to confiscate TENNIS BALLS and SLEEPING BAGS
    —but Trump’s violent, goonish supporters are allowed to openly carry assault rifles

    CLEVELAND—Welcome to Cleveland, where the Republican National Convention (RNC) is underway. The RNC is a highly scripted, elaborately staged and lavishly publicly funded private party. Here, credentialed Republican delegates, most of them party activists from around the country, circulate within a militarized perimeter of what authorities have designated a “national special security event.” As such, the U.S. Secret Service is handed complete control of an area, in this case downtown Cleveland. The area is ringed with a temporary but imposing black steel fence, patrolled by the full spectrum of law enforcement, from local police to federal SWAT teams. Yet because Ohio has extremely lenient gun laws, people can “open carry” here. And they do. Scores of Trump supporters have proudly shown up with their guns at their sides, including semi-automatic AR-15s, walking the downtown streets.

    It is not a total free-for-all, however. Many things are banned: tennis balls, sleeping bags, selfie sticks and canned goods. To highlight the absurdity of the situation, the women’s peace organization Code Pink staged a demonstration at the security checkpoint to enter the RNC. In their bags, the dozen or so pink-clad women carried 500 pink and green tennis balls with the phrase “Ban Guns, Not Balls” written on them. They began tossing them to each other.

    A line of Cleveland police officers quickly formed and tried to encircle the protest. They started to confiscate the tennis balls. There was confusion, as one officer asked a superior, “What do we do with the balls?” “Put them in your pocket,” came the exasperated reply. The police aggressively expanded their line, pushing observers, and us journalists, farther away. We managed to dodge them and got in close to ask Code Pink member Chelsea Byers what was going on: “We’re here saying that it’s ridiculous that the RNC has banned tennis balls, and yet they continue to let open carry happen in these streets. If they’re concerned about safety, they should be taking the guns off of these streets, not banning toys.” To reinforce the Cleveland police, a large contingent of Indiana State Police showed up, then riot police were deployed. Finally, a phalanx of police on horseback arrived. All this for about 15 women and one man from Code Pink and their 500 tennis balls.

    Read more…

    http://www.democracynow.org/2016/7/21/terror_tennis_balls_and_tamir_rice

  9. Draco T Bastard 10

    According to a just-released United Nations study, poorer workers and manual laborers are especially affected by heat stress. In developing countries, fewer working hours can translate into serious economic strain. In Southeast Asia, heat is already cutting work hours by 15 to 20 percent. By 2050, that number could be as high as 40 percent.

    “It’s a whole working month that would be lost because it’s so hot you can’t work,” the report’s coauthor Tord Kjellstrom told the Washington Post. If global warming continues at its current rate, extreme heat could cost global economies $2 trillion by 2030.

    Bold mine.

    So, not only do we have a huge cost incurred by climate change but we have to ask:
    How long before those in Southeast Asia decide to leave because the heat is, quite literally, killing them?
    When they leave, because they will, where are they going to go?

    • Rosie 10.1

      I don’t know if they can leave. These manual outdoor workers live in appalling poverty. They could be left stuck, with no where to go.

      Meena Kandasamy’s book The Gypsy Goddess was about the Kilvenmani massacre in Tamil Nadu. It looked at the oppressive working conditions for rice field workers, the heat being part of it. The book covered a period ion the late 1960’s – India is only getting hotter. The fate of outdoor workers in hot and tropical climates now in into the future is surely dire.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meena_Kandasamy

  10. Where getting a lot of first time callers on the RM post (mostly gloating righties, of course). This means that a lot of comments have to be manually released from the mod queue. Apologies to those who don’t see their comment instantly appear, but they will turn up eventually. And, remember, our service is still way better than your average Telco or power company.

  11. AmaKiwi 12

    Media predicting the theme of Trump’s grand speech on Thursday will be law and order.

    The odds are 999 to 1 he won’t call for prosecuting police who murder unarmed Black men.

    • joe90 12.1

      No doubt about it – he’ll toss a little raw meat to his people.

      .

      The Illinois Republican Party on Wednesday revoked credentials from one of its delegates to the Republican National Convention who made racially charged comments online and used the social media handle “whitepride,” The Chicago Tribune reported.

      Lori Gayne, a Trump delegate, posted on a photo of police officers to her Facebook on the opening day of the RNC, according to the report.

      “Our brave snipers just waiting for some “N—- to try something. Love them,” the caption read, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

      http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/lori-gayne-removed-rnc-delegate-white-pride

  12. joe90 13

    Gone.

    Roger Ailes has resigned from his role as Fox News chairman, effective immediately. https://t.co/bYxJ4VjP7J pic.twitter.com/Il6SenZrBA— ABC News (@ABC) July 21, 2016

    • Rodel 13.1

      Joe90. That’s good news about Roger Ailes. I heard he got $50million severance pay.
      Makes me wonder about the rest of the leggy Fox presenters still there..and the private lives of the Hannitys, O’reillys, and the rest of the fair, balanced and unafraids.

      Watched O’reilly on you-tube having a tantrum some time ago exhibiting violent insanity. Unafraid? yes! but fair and balanced he was not. About as loony as Donald.

      God bless America.

      But don’t worry nice balanced Rupert Murdoch has taken over Fox…Younger women will be safe with him..

  13. Morrissey 14

    “America’s Finest” strike again:
    This time they’ve bagged a therapist and an autistic man.

    http://www.vox.com/2016/7/21/12244938/north-miami-police-shooting-charles-kinsey-video

  14. Morrissey 15

    FORGET TRUMP: PETER THIEL IS SO DANGEROUS
    AND FASCINATING YOU HAVE TO WATCH HIM TONIGHT

    by Sam Biddle, The Intercept, 22 July 2016

    TONIGHT, PETER THIEL, an openly gay immigrant hailing from San Francisco, will address the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. His speech will close out the coronation of Donald Trump as the nominee claof his party, which three days earlier finalized a platform affirming the definition of marriage as “between one man and one woman.”

    Thiel may seem an unlikely warm-up act for a raving nativist like Trump. But the pair are actually an impeccable ideological tag-team. In fact, Thiel outmatches Trump both in the preposterousness of his capitalistic ambition and in the sheer pathology of his political inconsistency.

    Like Trump’s, Thiel’s speech will be one of the few in Cleveland (or Philly, for that matter) worth viewing in full, if only because the libertarian billionaire is, even more so than the man he’s opening for, a bizarre and fascinating man—his support for Trump is just one more strange item on a long list. And, unlike those who have taken the stage before him, Thiel isn’t a retired general, washed-up actor, incendiary evangelical, or reality show star, but a complicated member of the Silicon Valley elite.

    Many Americans found Thiel the same way they found Donald Trump: on a screen, presented as something between caricature and real-world business figure. In The Social Network, Hollywood’s 2010 rendition of the Facebook creation myth, Thiel’s character appears briefly to write Mark Zuckerberg a $500,000 check and suggest that he utterly betray his best friend and co-founder, Eduardo Saverin — a fictionalized version of one of the greatest moments of treachery in modern business history. …

    Read more….
    https://theintercept.com/2016/07/21/forget-trump-peter-thiel-is-so-dangerous-and-fascinating-you-have-to-watch-him-tonight/

  15. Rosie 16

    A witty and sharp poem. “The first time she saw a ciabatta”. A reflection on brexit from a Scottish perspective.

    http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2016/07/14/the-first-time-she-saw-a-ciabatta/

  16. Morrissey 17

    Two days ago, Jim Mora compared plagiarist Melania Trump to Johnny Cash.
    Now look who he compared her race-baiting, hate-spewing husband to this afternoon.

    The Panel, RNZ National, Friday 22 July 2016
    Jim Mora, Golnaz Bassam Tabar, Duane Major, Zara Potts

    “All right, we heard about the 180,000 illegal immigrants, but he also seemed to recast himself as the candidate of compassion. He was almost Gandhi-like….”

    —-Jim Mora, affecting his most deadly “serious” voice, 4:25 p.m.

    Again I ask: why is this dope still stinking up our airwaves?

    Open mike 20/07/2016

    • Morrissey 17.1

      There was worse to come: even more dismal than Mora’s vapidity was Golnaz Bassam Tabar’s wandery and ill-informed chat about ISIS, in which she compared the U.S.-U.K.-Turkish-supported terror group to Hamas and Hezbollah.

      There have been hundreds—make that thousands—of brain-dead NewstalkZB-calibre statements made on The Panel over the last eleven years, but Bassam Tabar’s foolish little fugue is right up, or down, there with the worst kind of ignorance spouted on this horrible show by the likes of Stephen Franks, Denise L’Estrange-Corbet, Barry Corbett or Michelle Boag.

  17. Kevin 18

    Why Corbyn Terrifies the Guardian

    An interesting article that looks a little deeper than what the title says.

    http://www.jonathan-cook.net/blog/2016-07-22/why-corbyn-so-terrifies-the-guardian/

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    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    5 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    5 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    6 days ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    6 days ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    6 days ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    7 days ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    7 days ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    7 days ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    1 week ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
    Our Good Fortune: Precisely because she has never been an ideologue (she calls herself a “pragmatic idealist”) Jacinda Ardern has a political nimbleness and spontaneity which, when infused with her exceptional emotional intelligence, produces spectacular demonstrations of leadership. Jacinda's empathic political personality contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    1 week ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Black April, May and June?
    Worldwide, the 1918 influenza epidemic – wrongly called ‘Spanish’ flu – lasted about two years. However, it lasted about six weeks in New Zealand (remembered as ‘Black November’, because the dead turned a purplish-black). It is thought about 7000 Pakeha died and 2,500 Maori. The population mortality rate was about ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID 19 has struck… as has a lot of terrible ineptitude from far too many
    In a world and a time when the worst off and most vulnerable have been asked, time and again, to foot the bill for the complete subjugating to the will of the 1% thanks to the GFC, at a point where the world as a whole is now seeing quite ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • What’s in the Coronavirus Package?
    With the economy already reeling from a crisis that’s barely begun, the Government today sought to provide reassurance to workers and businesses in the form of a massive phallic pun to insert much-needed cash into the private sector and help fight the looming pandemic. Here are the key components: $5.1 ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • I just had my benefit suspended during a fucking pandemic
    I am a member of the working poor and so still need state welfare to make rent. So I had booked an appointment for yesterday with my caseworker at Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) to apply for a transition to work grant. However the current health advice in New ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago
  • A good first step
    Today the government announced a financial package to deal with the effects of the pandemic. So far, it looks good: an initial $500 million for health to deal with immediate priorities, wage subsidies for affected businesses, $585 a week from WINZ for people self-isolating who can't work from home, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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

  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Government working to keep air freight moving
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