Open mike 28/07/2021

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 28th, 2021 - 105 comments
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105 comments on “Open mike 28/07/2021 ”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    The vaccination rollout now does appear to be in trouble – a self fulfilling tidal wave of unrelenting and hyper negative media coverage and false information on social media is leading to a lot of hesitancy. The media coverage in particular has been a master class in boomer bitching and every negative nelly with an axe to grind having the ear of the media.

    The failure is entirely in comms – apart from a feeble dribble of ads on TV that quickly spluttered out the DHBs, MOH and government have utterly failed to run a counter narrative to what should have been utterly predictable MSM and social media attacks on the rollout of the vaccine program.

    The DHBs should never have been put in charge of the vaccination program. They have miserably failed at every step of the pandemic response – in preparation, in the management of MIQ, and now the vaccination program (slow, badly communicated, over complicated) they've been worse than useless. The army should have managed the vaccination program in conjunction with the MoH, and government – who so admirably handled the comms around the lockdowns – is responsible for allowing the bozos at the DHBs and MoH to cock up the comms around the vaccination program.

    • Sabine 1.1

      so who gave the job to the DHB?

      • I Feel Love 1.1.1

        Showed a hesitant person some world news last night, plus Aus news. She's hesitant no more.

        • Sabine

          As for vaccine shy people etc, who cares. Open the vaccinations now to all who want it, and vaccinated those that show up rather then cry after those that still have reasons or make up reasons.

          But i doubt that the DHB is solely reasonable for the vaccine roll out, last i checked it is the Governments duty and responsibility to buy and distribute the vaccinations, the different Groups to receive Vaccinations was also set by government and so on. I understand that some may need a convenient scape goat for the misery that the vaccine rollout has been, but as far as i understand, the DHB is not Government. Even if some like to pretend it is.

          • I Feel Love

            I think it is "open for all" in Aug. In some parts of the US they're making vax mandatory for some jobs. While there are unvaxed ppl it'll keep mutating, but like you've said before, this thing ain't going away, ever probably.

    • weka 1.2

      For those of us that haven’t been following, how is it in trouble? I see people on Twitter talking about confusion over who is eligible when but find the level of angst confusing given we have no community transmission and time on our side. Is that what you are referring to?

      • Sabine 1.2.1

        This is actually an issue, the 'no community transmission' mantra. Ideally we are all mostly vaccinated before we have an outbreak.

        • Enough is Enough

          I totally agree. Time is only on our side until delta gets here and we have community transmission.

          The Australian man with Delta waltzing around Wellington for 3 days should have been a massive warning, and was also luckiest miss we have had. That demonstrated how vulnerable we currently are, and probably will be for the next 12 months.

      • I Feel Love 1.2.2

        It's not in trouble Weka, it's like what the US has now, with the RW politicians & media (+ RNZ here!) undermining constantly, then having to do an about turn to encourage ppl to get vaxxed, mixed messages. We're on schedule, just ppl are hesitant & discouraged, because bozo misinformation.

        • weka

          people are hesitant and discouraged about what? They doubt the usefulness of the vaccine and so aren't getting vaxxed?

          • I Feel Love

            Hesitant because conspiracy theories, because they think they are healthy & won't catch covid, believe covid isn't that bad, believe Chris Bishop. We're complacent because we've never really had it here, "what's the rush".

            My hesitant friend (who’s been eligible for months because she’s a caregiver) didn’t want the vax because “I have a good immune system & I don’t want the vax to make me sick”. My jaw dropped, she’s a bright person, but faaaaark.

            • weka

              ta. Anecdotes and MSM bullshit aside, is there evidence that too many people are refusing to be vaccinated?

              • Sabine

                Everyone i speak to wants it and is still waiting on invites etc.

                But i guess it is easier writing something about someone – undefined and far far away – who may or may not refuse, rather then talk about hte many things that have not worked out well in regards to the vaccine roll out.

              • Andre

                Any vaccine refusals are too many.

                The math is simple. Delta variant has R0 of 5 or greater. At best, the Pfizer vaccine has efficacy against symptomatic infection by Delta of 90%, possibly a lot less.

                So that means absolute best case is that community immunity* is just barely achieved when over 89% of the population is vaccinated. But under 12s are around 15% of the population, and there is no vaccine authorised yet for under 12s.

                What that means for the unvaccinated, after the vaccinated voting majority no longer tolerate closed borders and lockdowns, is that the virus will find them.

                In terms of risk analysis, that means the vaccine hesitant will have to weigh the risk of the vaccine (which really is tiny – think struck by lightning, die in plane crash, eaten by shark etc order of magnitude) versus the very real risk of some sort of long-term disability (I'd guess 20% or higher) or even death (1% looks like a fairly reasonable round number guess on average) from the actual disease. There is no world in which they won't have to choose between the vaccine and the disease.

                *Note that community immunity does not mean nobody will get infected. It just means that outbreaks tend to naturally die down, rather than naturally exponentially spread.

                • weka

                  yeah, nah. As the MoH rolls out the vaccine programme, sorts out the cultural barriers to access, most people will choose vaccination. Those that are *hesitant, can then be encouraged not by shaming and ostracising but by calling in.

                  The issue I have with your general scenario is that we don't yet know how/if the current vaccine will hold up long term. Lots of assumptions being made along the lines of 'this will all work out well if the nasty anti-vaxxers don't fuck it up'. But we don't actually know that.

                  Also, the position of 'open the borders and let unvaccinated people die or be damned' doesn't appear to take into account people that can't be vaccinated (children, people with health conditions).

                  • Andre

                    Trials are underway for the under-12s. Pfizer expects to submit the data in September. So there's a good chance that by the time the Group 4 rollout in NZ reaches the youngest age groups, there will be an authorised vaccine for children.


                    When it comes to medical reasons to not get the vaccine, that's been covered here many times before. But just to go over it yet again, the only general contraindication for the Pfizer vaccine is to do with the very few people at risk of allergic reaction to one of the ingredients of the vaccine. There is also a very very small additional risk of a temporary episode of post-vaccination cardiomyopathy in young males that hasn't risen to the level of contraindication (yet).

                    Immunocompromised people (the most common reason for contraindication for other vaccines) can get the vaccine, but it's just unlikely to do them much good. Because their when someone's immune system is low-functioning or not working at all, there's simply not much there for the vaccine to train to recognise and fight the invading virus.

                    I have not seen any reports of any other reason for contraindication for the Pfizer vaccine.

              • WeTheBleeple

                Go visit social media. Find a wingnut – check their friends.

                The nutjobs are rife, and there's a lot of them in some circles. How many overall, who can say. Some multiple of the New Conservative membership.

          • Anne

            They've been listening to the naysayers both on social media and among their friends and associates weka. The government, imo, has been far too soft on the element within society who have been spreading misinformation. This talk of being kind and gentle with them was never going to work. They are so full of the shit they have been absorbing, the only thing you can do is remove said shit from all social media sites and make it a sackable offence to spread misinformation in the workplace. Something along those lines anyway.

            At a recent family function, I discovered one of my nieces is refusing to get vaccinated. She's a cop in her early thirties and she's far from dumb but – as I told her – she is being stupid. 😐 She won't like me for it but sooner or later I expect her to see sense.

            • weka

              That doesn't tell me what the trouble is that Sanctuary mentions. Is the programme failing because people are refusing vaccination?

              • I Feel Love

                The program isn't failing

                • weka

                  I'm still a bit confused. Don't really know what Sanctuary was referring to, but that aside, can you please give me a state of play? Would this be fair?:

                  1. the programme is progressing
                  2. there have been some problems with bookings and access, which is frustrating some people
                  3. the MSM have been focused on sensationalism and clickbait
                  4. National are being National
                  5. there may or may not be an issue with the numbers of people refusing vaccination, but we simply don't know because no-one's measuring that yet (this last one is my own guess)
                  • Anne

                    1 to 4 – very fair.

                    5? According to a media item I saw one or two days ago, only 20% of Category 3 are fully vaccinated. [I don't have the time to trawl through the sites to find it.] There will be plenty of people who have future bookings for their second dose and I'm one of them. Even so, I doubt that would take the percentage total much above 50%.

                    If that proves correct, then up to 50% non-vaccination rate among Cat 3 is not a good state of affairs. More work needs to be done to provide easier access and to allay the fears that still exist out there.

                    • weka

                      what makes you think that that is a result of vaccine hesitancy or anti-vax beliefs?

                    • Andre

                      The weak take-up for the Manukau mass-vaccination event points to a lack of enthusiasm. It will be interesting to see what reasons the follow-up comes up with for that weak response.


                    • weka

                      I'm not seeing the evidence that this is mostly a vaccine hesitancy or anti-vax issue.

                      The head of the rollout for the DHBs, Alex Pimm, said his teams would work with the community to understand why the take-up was so slow.

                      South Auckland general practitioner Dr Api Talemaitoga said the mass rollout was a great initiative but Friday's event lacked Māori and Pasifika input.

                      The invitation was boring for event-loving South Aucklanders, he said.

                      "I think the organisers should have thought about making it a celebration or an event that is like a festival where people come along with their friends, can listen to a bit of music, or watch a bit of entertainment or dancing. Have a bit of food and then get vaccinated."

                      Talemaitoga said restricting vaccination access to a particular date and time was not practical for some families.

                      "It's over a weekend. They'll have to take kids to rugby. There's only one car in the family, so it'll be when that is available, so they can't actually make an appointment because they don't know when the car will be free, so we need to make it available for people to be able to walk in," he said.

                      More should be done to get GP practices online quicker as many people wouldn't be willing to get it anywhere else, he said.

                      This makes more sense to me. We already know that cultural sensitivity is a barrier issue in accessing health care.

                    • weka

                      which fits with pre-covid vax issues. It's not primarily an issue of anti-vax activism or belief, but more about some communities needing better access. We should be less worried about anti-vax and more concerned that the MoH doesn't know how to design culturally appropriate access.

                    • Anne

                      Hi weka – a reply to your 11:19am.

                      I think different parts of the country may be experiencing different problems. In Auckland, there has been sufficient evidence, both anecdotal and media reports, that suggest vaccine hesitancy is a significant problem. I suspect some of it is the result of influence from peripheral religious groups. You will recall Auckland had to go back into lockdown 3 in August last year because of one such cluster in Mt Roskill. We have a number of these church groups in Auckland. That could be just one of the causes.

                      The Auckland region, by and large, has well spread and easy access clinics but some other regions don't seem to be so well serviced. I think we need to take these differing situations into account. What scenario fits one region may be different to another. Sooner or later (later probably) we will know the main underlying causes of the slow uptake thus far.

              • Anne

                As Sanctuary says and I paraphrase… there is a hell of a lot of hesitancy out there. I agree with him that the media also have a lot to answer – the hyper negative media coverage has made it worse. Nor does the constant barrage of largely unwarranted criticism from National help. Together, they have scared many people and I am sure this is what is behind the huge numbers in Category 3 who have not even had their first jab yet.

                Edit: I see Sabine has suggested lack of easy access is a hindrance and she will be right of course – particularly in rural areas. But overall I still think hesitancy caused by the hyper negativity surrounding the vaccine is causing a bigger problem.

                • weka

                  what's the evidence base for "the huge numbers in Category 3 who have not even had their first jab yet"?

                  What's the evidence base that the cause of that is vaccine hesitancy?

                    • Sabine

                      Never mind the fact that for the better part of the this year, we only had enough vaccinations to actually vaccinated the as per the link, due to low numbers of vaccine doses in the country.

                      Nothing to do with 'Anti vax' or 'vaccine shy' people.

                      But all to do with the fact that we DON"T have enough doses in the country even now to vaccinated everyone who wants to be vaccinated.

                      I don't actually care who is at fault for the drip feeding type deliveries that we have in NZ, or why we don't emergency grant other vaccines, but fact is that we still don't have enough doses to vaccinated all of the country. The million + doses that have arrived this month will be good for about 500.000 people at two jabs. The rest will wait until the next delivery comes etc etc etc.

                    • weka


                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      The rest will wait until the next delivery comes etc etc etc.

                      Patience would indeed be advisable, imho, although not mandatory.

                      Nothing to do with 'Anti vax' or 'vaccine shy' people.

                      @Sabine (10:44 am) – as NZ's vaccine rollout (currently 3% ahead of schedule) continues, it's possible that the influence of the 'anti-vax' movement, and specifically 'anti-Comirnaty' communications (as opposed to Government and public health service pro-Comirnaty communications), will become a more apparent.


                      A key question is to what extent do anti-vax movements compromise the effectiveness of public health vaccination programs?

                      Fwiw, I don't believe that the anti-vax movement is growing (as a proportion of the population) in NZ, but I have no evidence for this. Only time will tell the extent to which anti-vax communications influence the uptake of the Pfizer vaccine, but the anti-vaccine leaflets in my letterbox failed to dampen the enthusiasm of this fully-vaccinated Kiwi – hooray!

                      COVID vaccines: time to confront anti-vax aggression [April 2021]
                      Halting the spread of the coronavirus will require a high-level counteroffensive against new destructive forces.

                      The World Health Organization recognized vaccine hesitancy as a top threat to global health before the pandemic.

                      I experienced sinking feelings during our Zoom calls. Although certainly worthwhile, I knew that messaging alone would be inadequate. We’d already seen this inadequacy in our efforts to prevent measles from returning to the United States and Europe in 2019, and to bolster vaccination rates for human papillomavirus to prevent cervical and other cancers. With COVID-19, our pro-vaccine messages would be drops in a vast sea of misinformation, much of it poured in deliberately by anti-vaccine forces.

                      Anti-vaxxers Think This Is Their Moment [Dec.2020]
                      The misleading claims Americans will soon hear about the newly released COVID-19 vaccines are nearly identical to claims made about smallpox immunizations 120 years ago: The ingredients are toxic and unnatural; the vaccines are insufficiently tested; the scientists who produce them are quacks and profiteers; the cell cultures involved in some shots are an affront to the religious; the authorities working to protect public health are guilty of tyrannical overreach. In the British Medical Journal in that period, a Dr. Francis T. Bond frets about what to do about his era’s anti-vaxxers and their arguments, which have since become well-trod canards because they are effective in frightening people.

                      Vaccine Rejection and Hesitancy: A Review and Call to Action [July 2017]
                      Vaccine refusal has been a recurring story in the media for well over a decade. Although there is scant evidence that refusal is genuinely increasing in the population, multiple studies have demonstrated concerning patterns of decline of confidence in vaccines, the medical professionals who administer vaccines, and the scientists who study and develop vaccines. As specialists in microbiology, immunology, and infectious diseases, scientists are content experts but often lack the direct contact with individuals considering vaccination for themselves or their children that healthcare professionals have daily. This review examines the arguments and players in the US antivaccination scene, and it discusses ways that experts in infectious diseases can become more active in promoting vaccination to friends, family, and the public at large.

                      History Shows Anti-Vaccination, Misinformation Campaigns Are Nothing New [March 2021]
                      Similar Arguments Against Vaccines Have Been Recycled Since The Smallpox Epidemics

                      The first documented anti-vaccine group called the National Anti-Vaccination League appeared in 1866 after Britain's government tried to mandate smallpox vaccinations for its constituents.

                      All sorts of messaging emerged from the group, including religious stances arguing that getting sick is part of God's plan, and libertarian points of view that proclaimed the government can't tell individuals what to do.

                  • I am in Group 3 and booked as soon as I received an invitation some 7 weeks ago. The vaccination date I was given was 9 August ; I think availability of vaccines was the problem then.

              • Cricklewood

                The roll out is a bit of a mess for quite a few. My wife for example has been contacted 3 times when she tried to book she is told is not eligible. This turned out to be due to a privacy breach on behalf of a Dhb where she was formally employed.

                My parents although now vaccinated were given a right running around in terms of booking then getting sent away to re book because they didnt have anyone to deliver the shots… didnt tell them prior to leaving home of course…

                A good freind has been trying to get his very elderly and frail mum vaccinated they booked at the local clinic but were then contacted to be told they couldnt do it on the day for various reasons but told he could drive to Mount Wellington (about 45min drive) to get it done. They did that and were turned away there because the booking wasnt transferred.

                Things like the above will drastically lower uptake.

    • I can only report on my own experience: got my first jab at Orchard Road in Christchurch yesterday.

      In at 4.20, out at 4.55. Very efficient, including a text reminding me of my appointment.

      The place was really buzzing and busy,

      Canterbury DHB has had a bit of a rocky path recently, but I would give them 10/10 for their vaccination programme.

      • I Feel Love 1.3.1

        Same Tony, I got a txt, surprised I was in that group (yet didn't bleat on Twitter "wtf? Why did they txt me, waaaaaah"), checked the hyper link they sent, booked my 2 dates (plenty of options, dates & times & venues, I chose the one next suburb over), & am ready to go. Fucking simple.

      • Molly 1.3.2

        Was not contacted despite being in Group 2. Rang to enquire, told that I was Group 3, booked in for first jab six weeks after. (Still meet Group 2 criteria when I checked MoH Covid website.)

        Went in. Took two hours. 1 and a half hours in queue. About 80-90 in queue.

        Son got random text on weekend. Thought it might be a scam, knowing how I had to wait. By the time he discovered it wasn't, booking had been rescinded. No follow up available.

      • Forget now 1.3.3

        I am actually typing this as I sit in waiting area after the jab (hence having the free time for the site). No waiting at all before, seats are slightly crammed together for wait after- but that's not much of a complaint.

        Though the way the site railroads you into 3 week interval is a bit of an issue. I am planning on canceling my second appointment now I have had my first jab, and reschedule the 2nd for 8-12 weeks away. 12 weeks was the original recommended interdose interval, but 10 weeks seems equivalent, 3 weeks is absolute minimum & may not produce as robust an immune response.

        On mobile, so not so easy to link sources. Mainly the UK PITCH study – long preprint pdf.

        Out the door now. Less than half an hour total and most of that was waiting around afterwards.

    • pat 1.4

      My observation is that the main problem appears to be an over-reliance on internet capability (an increasing problem when dealing with Gov, depts)….I booked online for my mother and the system appeared to operate very smoothly albeit the dates were sometime out in the future but if you try to book via phone I can see there are potentially multiple issues.

      • weka 1.4.1

        the 'trouble' is that people are having problems accessing the vaccination? Rather than say people declining to be vaxxed?

        • pat

          Thats one of the complaints i have heard….it is a seperate issue to vaccine hesitancy.

        • Sabine

          That is what i have encountered in my discussion with clients of all ages. For some it went swimmingly well, others over 70 like my in laws still waiting? And they live rural, so internet and phone can be sketchy. But yeah, accessing atm i think is a far greater problem then refusniks.

    • Adrian 1.5

      Your faith in the Army is a bit misguided, there are only a few thousand to call on in the armed forces and only a limited number of them are available to do the sort of work required. Yes, there is a logistics problem and the main one of them is the 20 minute wait-time post injection to check for adverse reactions, real or imagined. This requires the attendance of trained nurses and quite a few of them. Keep in mind that the injection takes less than a minute, give or take, but twenty times that for the observation period. So in a large one site effort of say 20 trained vaccinators, within 20 minutes you have a rolling, well, sitting anyway, maul of 400 post vaccinated people and that would require quite a lot of trained nurses. Trained REGISTERED nurses are essential for this part of the operation, definitely not someone who has done a half day First Aid course, adverse reactions, of any kind, can get critical very, very quickly and highly experienced staff are essential. Medical people are also very aware of how "contagious " reaction panic can get after one genuine case happens in a crowded enviroment. A badly handled reaction involving non-registered medics or God forbid an 18 year old army private could derail the entire safe roll-out quicker than a Boris or a Judith.

      So that is why the job is being done by the DHB's, not Rotary, or the Lions or the well-meaning, and certainly not the Army. DHBs know the medical protocols and the staffing requirements and the huge complications around finding enough suitable people to do the job properly while still running a full health service in winter mode.

      This will also explain the slow uptake of GP surgeries to do the job, most don't have the sitting, parking and other space available to do the job, not to mention the fact that most are working to capacity on their normal work anyway.

      I well remember the howling chaos on vaccination day in the 50s at school, an era when TV cameras and "Karens " were a long way in the future, even the Olympics would be pushed off the first item of the 6 oçlock news if a shit-fight of those proportions was to break out anywhere.

    • David 1.6

      It starts with the message from the top. The message from the top is we don’t have COVID so we don’t need to rush. We can be 125th in the world and the messaging from the top still maintains that’s okay. No rush. So no one is rushing.

    • Bearded Git 1.7

      Sanctuary….I believe you are buying into the Seymour meme when you say the vaccination roll out is in trouble. It seems to be ramping up nicely with the best vaccine on the planet.

      I'm in Darwin at the moment and the news is full of how crap the roll out is over here and how scumo is suffering in the polls because of it. But my guess is that by the time of the Oz election next May 90 per cent will be vaccinated and scumo will portray the Vax rollout as a success and get re-elected.

      • Incognito 1.7.1

        But my guess is that by the time of the Oz election next May 90 per cent will be vaccinated and scumo will portray the Vax rollout as a success and get re-elected.

        I.e., the mojo of BoJo.

    • Craig Hall 1.8

      Managing a vaccination programme within their boundaries should entirely be within the remit and capability of DHBs. That it turned out it wasn't is a failure of DHBs and also the ongoing monitoring/auditing.

    • woodart 1.9

      rang the 0800 number on saturday, made two appointments, had first jab yesterday. no stress, no drama………..

      • Incognito 1.9.1

        Please don’t bore us with your good news, you sniveling show-off! We want bad news and drama, the worse it is, the better. If you’re photogenic, we’ll post a photo of you here. We could really do with more good bad stories because that’s what the TS readership likes.


  2. Morrissey 2

    You might, like me, despise Boris Johnson and his cronies.

    But you'd better get used to them. The Labour Party in Britain is dead.

    • Adrian Thornton 2.1

      Yes and we can lay the blame directly at the feet of third way Labour members and most MSM liberal press including The Guardian, who as we all know now, mobilized to destroy Corbyn and his progressive Socialist project…as it turns out those people and their supporters would rather have Boris than real progressive change, would rather defend their free market liberal centrist ideology and see the world burn than give change of any sort a chance…turns out centrist liberals are just as dangerous to the planet as the the extreme right…because the centrist ideology is extremist.

      • Enough is Enough 2.1.1

        Why do people always blame the media when a politician fails. Corbyn was never going to be a PM. Blind Freddy could see that from the day he became leader.

        The Tories could have put up a poodle against Corbyn and they would have won. In fact they put up something less qualified than a poodle in the form of Boris, and they still won.

        Some people just don't have it depsite their loyal supporters thinking they do. For example try this on for size rgarding Judith Collins:

        Yes and we can lay the blame directly at the feet of most MSM liberal press including Stuff, the Herald and TVNZ , who as we all know now, mobilized to destroy Collins and her consevative project.

        That statement is a load of BS, but its what Judith's supporters think. The reality is she, just like Corbyn, were never going to be elected because they are shit.

        • AB

          "In fact they put up something less qualified than a poodle in the form of Boris, and they still won"

          You're talking about 2019. It was much closer in 2017 – so you need an explanation for why Corbyn was shit in 2019, but not really shit in 2017. Did he become substantially shittier over the course of two years? Was Theresa May even less qualified than someone already less qualified than a poodle? Or was Brexit important in some way, or the antisemitism campaign/beatup, or a media landscape that is far more partisan than in NZ? Did the surprise of Corbyn's 2017 result mobilise all reactionary forces against him in a sort of frenzy? Did the fact that he is almost absurdly principled but also rather dull and anti-charismatic matter? Why did polling indicate that Labour's policies were popular but Corbyn was not? Should he have told the second referendum advocates within Labour to boil their heads and protect the Red Wall with a "Brexit for the many not the few" campaign? It's all history now anyway and only tragics still care. But single-dimensional, categorical explanations won't help us understand it

          • Craig Hall

            Particularly since Labour votes didn't really move that much – the bigger change was the right wing coalescing around the Tories rather than splitting between the Tories and UKIP.

          • Enough is Enough

            Why did polling indicate that Labour's policies were popular but Corbyn was not?

            I think that is the key for both elections and again is just a feature of political parties. Some people are loved, some are not and that is where it begins and ends.

            A perfect example is New Zealand in 2017. What core policies did Jacinda change when she bacame leader of Labour? What were the big annoucnements that resulted in such a jump in popularity for her party over such a short period of time.?The answer is nothing. The Labour party, and its policy platform that went to the election, was the same Labour party that Andrew Little had lead. The only difference was we got rid of someone who was never going to be PM with someone who was always going to be a PM.

            It is simple as that.

            • AB

              Fair enough – the 2017 NZ election certainly surprised me by showing how much personality matters.

            • Incognito

              The difference between a pretty communist and a rugged union man?

      • Bearded Git 2.1.2

        +100 Adrian…..Corbyn shabbily treated by the LP and the Grauniad.

        FFS who ever believed the anti-Semitism bollocks.

      • Peter 1 2.1.3

        Stopped voting Labour after 1984, still see no reason to change.

    • tc 2.2

      Sir Rodney's doing a bang up job for his peers after replacing JC. Continuing the work of Kinnock, Blair etc

    • Ad 2.3

      Thankfully Morrissey you are nowhere near anything to do with UK Labour.

      It doesn't take much for either Corbyn or Starmer to pick up the phone to the LibDems and sweep the field, as they have before.

      In the 2010 general election, the Tories won 36.1% of the vote, Labour and the Lib Dems together picked up 52%.

      In 2017, the Tories won 42.4% and Labour and the Lib Dems 47.4%.

      The last election in 2019, which was a Tory triumph in terms of seat numbers, saw the party win 43.6% of the vote, with Labour and the Lib Dems just ahead on 43.7%.

      In every one of these cases, the Tories still entered Downing Street.

      Labour just need to figure out how to run coalitions again, and after that pick up the phone.

      • Morrissey 2.3.1

        You're an optimist, Ad. The fact is, the Labour Party has, thanks to the sabotage of the Blairite right wing, descended from the biggest, most popular political party in Europe to a shambles.

        • Adrian Thornton

          Ad the optimist, which is true in a sense…like all free market centrists they believe that if they keep pushing an economic ideology that has proved itself unfit for human consumption (let alone the rest of the planet) hard enough and loud enough it might start working again, while the earth burns around us…as I have mentioned lese where these people are dangerous extremists.

          • Ad

            Seriously no one gives a flying fuck about ideology anymore.

            Instead, people just learn to count.

            If the UK Greens could consistently get above the Lib Dems, I'm sure they'd be on the election day speed dial as well. In fact in 2010 they had a shot at a "traffic light" coalition but still weren't close to solid.

            • Morrissey

              Seriously no one gives a flying fuck about ideology anymore.

              The people who instigated that ludicrous campaign against Corbyn cared a great deal. They burned down the Labour Party.

              • Ad

                Only person who lost for Labour according to the exit polls was Corbyn. OMG running against the weakest Conservative candidate in a generation; a far stupider loss than Hillary v Trump.

                It was probably The Guardian what caused it.

                Then there's Blair.

                3 massively popular Labour terms under Blair – longest they'd had in decades … and Brown just fucked up the 4th they could have had.

                Or maybe it was The Guardian again.

                • Bearded Git

                  Brexit stuffed Corbyn in 2019.

                  Much though I like and support Corbyn he was very slow to come up with a clear policy on this, which cost him and the party dearly.

                  Corbyn as a person is, I believe, well liked and respected by many more people than Boris.

            • Adrian Thornton

              "Seriously no one gives a flying fuck about ideology anymore"…that funny coming from one of the most centrist fundamentalist ideologue on TS…though it doesn't surprise me in the slightest as the liberal centrists have been pushing that 'post ideology' bullshit for years…everything is ideology.

      • Forget now 2.3.2

        The problem is that in the UK elections nationwide percentages don't mean much. In 2019:

        Corbyn's Labour got; 32% of the popular vote for 202 seats,

        Libdems; 11.6% for 11 seats

        SNP; 3.9% for 48 seats

        Tories; 365 seats alone with 326 needed (half of 650 +1).

        Though SNP are more focused on un-uniting the kingdom to ally with UKLabour.

        • Ad

          Learning a bit of history would do you some good.

          Labour and the Liberal Democrats have actually run governments in the United Kingdom in the following terms: 1903, 1924, 1929, and 1977.

          They also went in together in Scotland in 1999.

          They also had a close arrangement in the Welsh Parliament in 2000.

          Blair was in close discussions with them in 1997 until he realised he didn't need them on election day.

          Coalitions were also discussion in 2010.

          So it's pretty commonplace even in an FPP system in the UK.

      • Bearded Git 2.3.3

        Nice numbers Ad

        I say yet again under MMP Corbyn would have been PM in 2017 AND 2019 (assuming the SNP backed him, which of course they would have).

  3. Robert Guyton 3

    Finally! A Really Serious Issue!

  4. Adrian Thornton 4

    In the "this comes as no surprise dept" it turns out that the Biden family are just as corrupt as the Trump's…but at least he conducts himself in a more palatable way for the refined tastes for his liberal imperialist supporters to swallow….and report on…

    Hunter Biden expected to meet with potential art buyers before anonymous sales

    ….and while on the subject of corruption, human rights attorney Steven Donziger has just been convicted in a US court of contempt of court, so is still under house arrest that has been going on for nearly 700 days!..strangely enough our own RNZ felt the need to remind us all of Alexei Navalny's case yesterday, but as far as I know has never covered this outrageous miscarriage of justice…but then RNZ never covers that other miscarriage of justice out in full public view..Julian Assange, so no surprises there..unfortunately for the New Zealand public.

    The Lawyer Who Beat Chevron Has Been Found Guilty of Criminal Contempt

    • Pete 4.1

      "It turns out that the Biden family are just as corrupt as the Trump's."

      I'm pleased someone has lists of all the corruption from all quarters from over the years and can compare the objective lists.

      In the end does it really matter? One man's 'Swamp' is another's Shangri La.

  5. Ad 5

    Behind the banner headlines of unemployment and underemployment heading down, down, down, poverty over the last year appears to be going up and up and up:

    "In the year to March 2021, some children and young people were placed in extreme and dangerous situations due to lack of support for those made homeless. More families than ever were forced to experience the deep-seated stress of ongoing food insecurity due to income inadequacy. Inequity grew between children on lowest incomes and others, and our modelling suggests around 18,000 more children may have been pushed into poverty (even before housing costs are considered)."

    The poorest of us have really been made worse over the last year.

  6. Reality 6

    Vaccination in Hutt seems to be going pretty well. Haven't come across any major frustrations and people are complimentary about the actual vaccination process at their appointment. People are being quite patient about waiting their turn for their vaccination as most understand it is all a massive undertaking nationwide. So amid the noisy complaints in the media there are many thousands who are satisfied.

    A hard to understand comment was from one person who is an anti-vaxxer and does not want their body being injected with the vaccine, but is a long time smoker taking all manner of chemicals and toxins.

    • Andre 6.1

      Not quite as bad, but I have acquaintances that are into the lifestyle of no-artificial-toxins, natural-wellness, superfoods, etc (dunno for sure if they're anti-vax), and whenever I visit their place it reeks of scented candles, incense, weird foods etc.

      Coincidentally (not very), they're always complaining of various vague ailments, often respiratory, that their conventional doctors can't cure which is why they don't trust conventional medicine, and why woo alternative medicine is the answer for them.

      • Bruce 6.1.1

        Well i have very definite arthritis that that the doctor has nothing for, I've started using a herbal oil that gives very definite relief that the doctor says is not. I've eaten some strange things , ants, crickets and more. I don't have the flu vaccine but have had 1st pfizer, so its like everything, do your own research make your choices and live with it.

        As an aside when the doctor looks disprovingly as I refuse the flu vaccine I ask if they eat processed meat and suggest they consider their own choices before questioning mine.

    • AB 6.2

      "Vaccination in Hutt seems to be going pretty well"

      Good to hear. Any sign of local MP Chris Bishop shouting "shambles" as the needle goes into his shoulder?

      • Anne 6.2.1

        He saved it for tonight's TV1 6pm news. Its a shambles he said. Instead of counting sheep he goes to bed every night repeating "Its a shambles" over and over.

  7. Patricia Bremner 7

    At each step we have been told of vaccine demand worldwide, the approximate dates and sizes of NZ shipments, the charts clearly show those DHBs doing well and those running behind schedule, and that overall we are 5% above the planned rollout.

    We were warned earlier that shipping and supply would dictate our progress. We have begun mass vaccinations from this week.

    The Government is not responsible for people's stupidity. The dying covid victims of vaccine hesitancy overseas are reported to be asking to be innoculated. That is a sad but predictable outcome.

    We have lost sight of the huge impact of the pandemic, protected as we are by many favourable factors, but get a right wing group in power in 2023 a shift in emphasis from wellbeing to money, and wow… we become like Britain.

  8. Bruce 8

    The planet may burn and we'll eat more plastic but at least we will be able to watch rugby.

    • Molly 8.1

      “NZ Rugby’s chief executive Mark Robinson said the partnership is “an exciting new venture”.

      A strange take, but a useful one. Shows how far removed from reality and consequences he is. Will adjust expectations for meaningful discussion accordingly.

  9. Incognito 9

    For those who would like to have some insights on why Kiwis may hesitate to get vaccinated against Covid, see Barriers to uptake here:

    Google is your friend 😉

  10. Incognito 11

    Just updated!

    At a glance:

    COVID-19 vaccine research insights June 2021

    This research is part of an ongoing series that looks into New Zealanders’ attitudes and public sentiment towards the COVID-19 vaccine.


    Horizon Research, in association with the School of Population Health, University of Auckland, have been commissioned to survey New Zealanders’ attitudes and sentiment towards COVID-19 vaccines.

  11. McFlock 12

    Just shy of 40k jabs given out yesterday. 30k the day before.

    Things are gaining momentum.

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    6 days ago
  • Top 10 news links at 10 am for Monday, Nov 27
    PM Elect Christopher Luxon was challenged this morning on whether he would sack Adrian Orr and Andrew Coster.TL;DR: Here’s my pick of top 10 news links elsewhere at 10 am on Monday November 27, including:Signs councils are putting planning and capital spending on hold, given a lack of clear guidance ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the new government’s policies of yesteryear
    This column expands on a Werewolf column published by Scoop on Friday Routinely, Winston Peters is described as the kingmaker who gets to decide when the centre right or the centre-left has a turn at running this country. He also plays a less heralded but equally important role as the ...
    6 days ago
  • The New Government’s Agreements
    Last Friday, almost six weeks after election day, National finally came to an agreement with ACT and NZ First to form a government. They also released the agreements between each party and looking through them, here are the things I thought were the most interesting (and often concerning) from the. ...
    6 days ago
  • How many smokers will die to fund the tax cuts?
    Maori and Pasifika smoking rates are already over twice the ‘all adult’ rate. Now the revenue that generates will be used to fund National’s tax cuts. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: The devil is always in the detail and it emerged over the weekend from the guts of the policy agreements National ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • How the culture will change in the Beehive
    Perhaps the biggest change that will come to the Beehive as the new government settles in will be a fundamental culture change. The era of endless consultation will be over. This looks like a government that knows what it wants to do, and that means it knows what outcomes ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • No More Winnie Blues.
    So what do you think of the coalition’s decision to cancel Smokefree measures intended to stop young people, including an over representation of Māori, from taking up smoking? Enabling them to use the tax revenue to give other people a tax cut?David Cormack summed it up well:It seems not only ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • 2023 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #47
    A chronological listing of news and opinion articles posted on the Skeptical Science  Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Nov 19, 2023 thru Sat, Nov 25, 2023.  Story of the Week World stands on frontline of disaster at Cop28, says UN climate chief  Exclusive: Simon Stiell says leaders must ‘stop ...
    1 week ago
  • Some of it is mad, some of it is bad and some of it is clearly the work of people who are dangerous ...
    On announcement morning my mate texted:Typical of this cut-price, fake-deal government to announce itself on Black Friday.What a deal. We lose Kim Hill, we gain an empty, jargonising prime minister, a belligerent conspiracist, and a heartless Ayn Rand fanboy. One door closes, another gets slammed repeatedly in your face.It seems pretty ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • “Revolution” is the threat as the Māori Party smarts at coalition government’s Treaty directi...
    Buzz from the Beehive Having found no fresh announcements on the government’s official website, Point of Order turned today to Scoop’s Latest Parliament Headlines  for its buzz. This provided us with evidence that the Māori Party has been soured by the the coalition agreement announced yesterday by the new PM. “Soured” ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    1 week ago
  • The Good, the Bad, and the even Worse.
    Yesterday the trio that will lead our country unveiled their vision for New Zealand.Seymour looking surprisingly statesmanlike, refusing to rise to barbs about his previous comments on Winston Peters. Almost as if they had just been slapstick for the crowd.Winston was mostly focussed on settling scores with the media, making ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • When it Comes to Palestine – Free Speech is Under Threat
    Hi,Thanks for getting amongst Mister Organ on digital — thanks to you, we hit the #1 doc spot on iTunes this week. This response goes a long way to helping us break even.I feel good about that. Other things — not so much.New Zealand finally has a new government, and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Thank you Captain Luxon. Was that a landing, or were we shot down?
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past week’s editions.Also in More Than A FeildingFriday The unboxing And so this is Friday and what have we gone and done to ourselves?In the same way that a Christmas present can look lovely under the ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago

  • New Zealand welcomes European Parliament vote on the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement
    A significant milestone in ratifying the NZ-EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) was reached last night, with 524 of the 705 member European Parliament voting in favour to approve the agreement. “I’m delighted to hear of the successful vote to approve the NZ-EU FTA in the European Parliament overnight. This is ...
    1 week ago
  • Further humanitarian support for Gaza, the West Bank and Israel
    The Government is contributing a further $5 million to support the response to urgent humanitarian needs in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel, bringing New Zealand’s total contribution to the humanitarian response so far to $10 million. “New Zealand is deeply saddened by the loss of civilian life and the ...
    2 weeks ago

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