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Open mike 28/09/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 28th, 2020 - 229 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

229 comments on “Open mike 28/09/2020 ”

  1. ScottGN 1

    TVNZ has put out some info on our attitudes to migration from their Vote Compass polling. The headline (as usual) is rather misleading. Far from being divided it turns out 60% of us either support the current high migration levels or would like even more. Only 37% would prefer fewer migrants. And it seems our attitudes towards migrants have evolved a lot in the last decade.

    https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/vote-compass-kiwis-divided-whether-more-migrants-should-allowed-in

  2. Stuart Munro 2

    David Slack is showing a bit of poetic talent.

  3. ScottGN 3

    Richard Harman claims National insiders have told him their internal polling has the party at about the same as the public polls. He also confirms that Collins has moved to reduce the role of campaign chair Brownlee and has embarked on a last-ditch one-woman effort to save the base.

    https://www.politik.co.nz/2020/09/28/labour-walking-away-with-it/

  4. ScottGN 4

    I love the irony that National is still supporting Seymour to win Epsom while at the same time Collins has been forced to launch a desperate rearguard campaign to try and stop him from devouring her party’s right flank.

    • Incognito 4.1

      ACT is devouring the heart & soul of National, or what’s left of it, if you buy into Seymour’s framing of the narrative. National brought this upon themselves and let the Trojan horse in but they were too arrogant to imagine that this could ever happen because they have short memories and Sir Bill won’t be reminding them of the past, will he?

      • ianmac 4.1.1

        National kept ACT on life support out of the kindness of their hearts. ACT recovered and is laughing at National. How weird is that!

        • Incognito 4.1.1.1

          Not weird but disturbingly predictable if you had any foresight, which appears to be sadly lacking in National. Seymour played a smart game, he’s reaping the rewards now, and he deserves all the votes he can get and more. Of course, their fortunes will change again because they can’t help themselves and self-destruct.

          • bwaghorn 4.1.1.1.1

            Do you think act voters truly understand what act stands for,?

            They are a sure fire way of turning nz into a mini USA hell hole imho

            • Incognito 4.1.1.1.1.1

              I’ve heard that a few are quite enjoying the USA hell hole and want it to last in perpetuum.

        • Patricia Bremner 4.1.1.2

          That is deserved. It is rorting our system, so to be "Hoist by their own petard" Lol.

      • Bearded Git 4.1.2

        I went to Seymour's meet n greet in Wanaka….he attacked me for being a busybody when I questioned him about the RMA and I said it was a mistake to ditch the RMA because that would mean unsightly development in the landscape.

  5. millsy 5

    I wonder how much Labour's support is due to the fact that there are a lot of 60-64 year olds who are struggling in either low wage work or having to go begging to WINZ, and are hanging out to be able to claim the pension at 65 so they can work less hours and have some income stablilty for once.

    It seems that ACT and National cannot be trusted to screw with the pension, either to tighten payments or hike the retirement age. Lifting the super age to 67 will financially break a lot of people.

    • Sabine 5.1

      would it not be grand if Labour could find it in their hearts to look at the unemployment currently – and the projected increase over then next year, and let these older workers/unemployed go into early retirement?

      Super will be lifted to 67 and even 70 and i would not be surprised to happen even on labours watch. The point is not that there are no jobs, the point is that no one wants to pay for it.

      Hence Robert Grants floated 'unemployment /social security/ welfare insurance/tax scheme. 🙂 you have not paid into that? no benefits for you then dear.

    • RedLogix 5.2

      Or like me, you are a NZ citizen (who lived and worked in NZ most of my life) who is currently overseas, turned 65 this year and cannot apply for Super because we have to be 'in country' to apply.

      Speaking to our family lawyer (over another stupid issue created by another stupid lawyer decades ago), she says's she has numerous clients in a similar position, but because any kiwi living overseas is perceived by this govt as 'undeserving' there is no motive to do anything. Especially not just before an election.

      I did email WINZ a few months back and was told to apply the to Australian's for assistance, but they have nothing until I'm 67.

      And of course getting work in my usual profession is suddenly impossible. Specialist roles with a dozen qualifications I can tick all at an expert level, and I don't even get a polite reply. I was quite lucky to make it as far as I did without encountering this, and it's totally illegal discrimination of course, but I'm a privileged white male, so tough cheese. I'm doing casual jobs as I can find them to pay the rent.

      COVID has thrown the lives of millions of people into turmoil, many far worse than our situation. We're fortunate enough to be able to muddle through, so whinging about it is pointless. But for others in this age bracket, yes, there are many who really struggle.

      It's not the Super rules that irk me so much, as the blatant discrimination in the job market which no-one wants to talk about, much less act on, that needs govt action. As populations age all over the developed world this is a policy area that now demands attention.

      • Sabine 5.2.1

        Race has very little to do with benefits, tho , nice try.

        You don't get super because you don't live here, change that by moving back and you will be getting super or another benefit should you be poor enough for them to not refuse you. Well you might not get any other benefits if you derive income from your rental properties.

        But you don't need to live in a country that is on record for not providing any social welfare to non citizens.

        As for jobs? lol, we are all losing our jobs, a few a day, you are not special nor are you hard done by.

        • RedLogix 5.2.1.1

          Well you might not get any other benefits if you derive income from your rental properties.

          As I've pointed out numerous times, rental properties are not a gold mine. Yes they do produce a small profit for us, but at present it's still less than any benefit. And if we did return to NZ we'd have to evict a tenant in order to have somewhere to live. Are you suggesting this?

          But you don't need to live in a country that is on record for not providing any social welfare to non citizens.

          Yes I could return to NZ, but it would then be impossible to return to Aus and the commitments I have here.

          As for jobs? lol, we are all losing our jobs, a few a day, you are not special nor are you hard done by.

          What part of my comment above suggested this?

          2022 is the year when more than half the Boomer generation has retired; and like every other stage of life we passed through, we're going to change things. Most of us are still in good health and have the capacity to contribute, but face an irrational discrimination from employers. That needs to change. Do you disagree with this?

          • Sabine 5.2.1.1.1

            if you don't derive an income from your rental properties, maybe you are doing it wrong. s/

            you have them, and they provide you with an income and that is oodles better what a lot of people have right now. you can sell, cash up and maybe live quite comfortably of that. You are not on the street, and so far you don't seem to suffer hard ship.

            Yes, you could return to NZ. You could, and then you would receive Super. So if you judge your commitments to OZ higher then your need for super then OZ it is, and you don't get to cry for NZ not providing you with an entitlement that you only get when you live in NZ.

            Do you realise that the children and the grandchildren of all of the boomers won't see super before they are 70 if at all? Could you possibly conceive that those of us that fall into this category have very little patience with people who have rental properties for financial gain, who live overseas for 'other commitments' and thus can't receive a benefit that one only gets when one lives in the country that pays that benefit via the local tax payer?

            You are not yet hard done by. You can have your life in OZ or you can have your super in NZ. As for leaving the country, well i guess that sucks for all of us, and yet we choose to stay put. Go figure.

            • RedLogix 5.2.1.1.1.1

              if you don't derive an income from your rental properties, maybe you are doing it wrong.

              Maybe you are completely ignorant on how the business works. But you didn't answer my question about evicting a tenant so I assume you are all in favour of us doing this. Now all but one have been with us for over five years now, and made our houses their homes. Would you care to help us choose which one we should kick out right now? Assuming that the COVID restrictions would even allow us to?

              So if you judge your commitments to OZ higher then your need for super then OZ it is, and you don't get to cry for NZ not providing you with an entitlement that you only get when you live in NZ.

              Yet many countries are quite happy to pay retirement benefits to citizens who live elsewhere. And indeed WINZ does pay NZ Super to citizens who live at least six months of the year in NZ; I'm perfectly happy with that rule. But the requirement to be in NZ to apply for it, especially with COVID travel restrictions, is a tad unreasonable in the circumstances.

              You are not yet hard done by.

              I didn't say I was; I very carefully pointed out there are many people in far worse situations than us and that I'm not having a whinge. But you choose to ignore this in order to have a personal go at me.

              Like most of your comments here, they're based on bad assumptions and bad faith.

    • bwaghorn 5.3

      The average life expectancy is rapidly approaching 90 . It needs to be lifted .

      • RedLogix 5.3.1

        As I was pointing out above, that's not feasible on it's own for at least two reasons.

        One is that as people age their capacity to work is highly variable. Last year I met a lawyer who is still running chamber at the age of 94. Many in the Auckland legal community will know who I'm talking about 🙂 But he's a remarkable outlier, most people will have lost either physical or mental capacity long before then, and the age at which this happens is entirely a matter of fate.

        The problem is that we've learned how to extend life expectancy, but have yet to do it and reliably maintain life capacity.

        And of there is the entirely other problem that employers blatantly and illegally discriminate over a 'certain' age. Until you deal effectively to this, raising the Super age is absolutely wrong.

        And then of course NZ Super is actually a good example of a UBI working really well in most cases. As a long term supporter of the concept I want it extended, not curtailed.

        • bwaghorn 5.3.1.1

          I believe the maori party suggested a system where you can take super anytime over a 10 year period from 60? I think.

          But if you take it early you get less than if you wait till you are 70 . I'd go with that as there's a very good chance I'll be knocked by 65 . (Manual labour hard living and misadventures)

          • RedLogix 5.3.1.1.1

            I stand to be corrected on this, but globally only 75% of us make it to 65 anyhow. Fate does play it's role and I don't think any system can gainsay it.

            But yes we do need to have a more intelligent discussion on this. Globally NZ is actually one of the relatively few developed nations with a relatively flat demographic profile; we may be aging but nowhere near as fast as most other nations. The only others that are similar to us are the USA, Mexico and I think France.

            You'd be very surprised to learn that nations as diverse as Brazil, China, Iran, Saudi, Russia, Germany, Canada and of course the grand-daddy of them all Japan, are all well ahead of us in terms of an aging population. NZ actually has it quite good in this respect and is one of our strong points in the coming decades.

            Still this is a place that humanity has never been in before, never have we seen inverted demographic pyramids on a scale like this before. It's uncharted territory not just for NZ, but for the whole world. And while the economic unknowns may be unsettling, personally I think there are positive aspects to this we've yet to properly understand if only we'd let go some of our assumptions about aging.

        • Gabby 5.3.1.2

          Well if means testing is out of the question, maybe the answer is to taxk superannuitants more highly on their other income.

      • Pat 5.3.2

        the reality is (one that is constantly overlooked) is that despite life expectancy increasing the ability to actively work, certainly full time , is not….and then as Redlogix notes, there is the profound reluctance to employ those nearing (the current) retirement age.

        During the last major economic adjustment many within 10 years of retirement never worked again in any notable capacity….it may be reasonable to expect the same again

      • greywarshark 5.3.3

        edit
        b waghorn you give a simple answer to an obvious problem.

        But how can it be thought by old people that they can spend a third of their life on a pension, pleasing themselves what they do, and enjoying many special advantages in their nirvana? There is an obvious problem here, three things – increasing numbers of retired people, increasing numbers living to extremely old age, and increasing numbers reverting to a virtual childhood or becoming virtual zombies.

        However when it comes to younger adults, even children, they are often treated harshly or carelessly especially if they are poor, and the children the young adults bear, who are the future citizens are not the centre of the nation's caring concern and support. Yet the young are the ones who keep the economy going, which provides the services and other things the retired and elderly want, and provides an income which most find essential.

        Once people understand the money system in a reasoned and practical way it will be seen that as long as we have sufficient resources, our money system can afford to pay benefits for the elderly to whatever is needed, except that there would be a limit to what could be spent overseas, and on imports. But also we need to understand something we have forgotten, our welfare system is reciprocal. The reason that we have superannuation is that few can save enough, in a sure manner, to have a nestegg at the end of their working life to keep them for the rest of their days. So super is paid out of our current earnings. But what about when people retire and are not earning, how can they reciprocate for the income and services provided?

        The answer is that the retired be signed to an agency of their choice, perhaps called the Dad's Army. or the Backbone Brigade, or the Lively Livers, or the Student Army Support Group, or the Farmy Army, or the Grandmothers' Active Love Group or others that are under the aegis of the Retirement Ministry. There they would choose what they were going to help with from the list of suggested and approved tasks, and be asked to put in five hours a week doing whatever they could manage and had skills for.

        It's time for adults to grow up, as well as grow old. We older people need to learn, think and do things differently. There should be the opportunity to do tertiary study where there is space in the particular class/degree provider. Being mentors to young adults then could be a great help. There is a crying need for counsellors, and being able to talk to trained, wise and friendly old people would help as often when talking through problems with someone encouraging, the answer to the trouble becomes obvious – solved.

        This blog is part of our learning, we are learning from others who have skills and understanding and I bet that everyone who comes here regularly, prepared to learn and widen their mind, has found it invaluable. We have to keep thinking widely, drawing in experience and applying it to the present, and judging new theories and ideas for feasibility. These days people need to keep their feet on the ground, but be prepared to take reasoned leaps of faith, stepping stone by stepping stone. It isn't for the faint-hearted, or the wishful thinker.

        • PsyclingLeft.Always 5.3.3.1

          " The answer is that the retired be signed to an agency of their choice, perhaps called the Dad's Army. or the Backbone Brigade, or the Lively Livers, or the Student Army Support Group, or the Farmy Army, or the Grandmothers' Active Love Group or others that are under the aegis of the Retirement Ministry. There they would choose what they were going to help with from the list of suggested and approved tasks, and be asked to put in five hours a week doing whatever they could manage and had skills for."

          I could add the Mens Shed groups? Through their Skill base they do heaps of Community Minded Projects. Forest and Bird have some good groups looking after our Biodiversity.

          Have you got a U3A around? Quite Mind expanding…(apparently : )

          Yeah, youre right theres probably a lot of people just need a chance…

          Also, I think their has been a loss of, (I dunno, "respect" ? Value ?) that was given to Elders. Maori still have some? Is it because of a being let down factor? rogernomic/neolibs probably have a lot to answer for here.

    • greywarshark 5.4

      Millsy a missing word – Need a double negative to make that sentence right.

      'It seems that ACT and National cannot be trusted not to screw with the pension, either to tighten payments or hike the retirement age.'

  6. PsyclingLeft.Always 6

    ORC's Andrew Noone, also Farmer, (along with a number of other ORC's, typical of Regional Councils) states…

    "Good water quality is everyone’s responsibility, and it’s going to take a collective effort — not just from our farmers, but also in our towns and cities — to see improvements across Otago," Mr Noone said.

    https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/water-quality-%E2%80%98everyone%E2%80%99s-responsibility%E2%80%99

    Well of course. However

    "Urban streams make up about 1 percent of total waterways, so while they generally have the worst instream health, they are relatively uncommon throughout Aotearoa New Zealand."

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/427008/water-quality-of-rivers-and-streams-not-improving-study-shows

    Noone will know what to do as he has previous…

    'After being fined by his own council for an environmental infringement on his Waikouaiti farm an Otago Regional councillor says he "made a mistake''. '

    https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/councillor-fined-after-sheep-found-waterway

    oh and FYI , I'm on record as stating ALL NZ's Waterways need Clean.

  7. observer 7

    Always a big "if" but … IF current polling trends translate into votes, National could lose all its MPs (or candidates) from Indian and Chinese communities, to be replaced by ACT MPs who aren't. And they could even halve the number of women in their caucus.

    It would be quite some legacy for Judith Collins. The price of her arrogance, paid by others.

    • Matiri 7.1

      …. and from Korean communities ie Melissa Lee.

    • woodart 7.2

      think bags of asian cash for the nats is now just a memory. and collins is just another pale male and stale nat. nats are retreating back to their roots, a aging white male farmers party. collins will feel at home, in gumboots, helping her husband loot the far nth for kauri stumps.

  8. Morrissey 8

    The Guardian’s deceit-riddled new statement betrays both Julian Assange and journalism

    by JONATHAN COOK, Nazareth, 26 September 2020

    In my recent post on the current hearings at the Old Bailey over Julian Assange’s extradition to the United States, where he would almost certainly be locked away for the rest of his life for the crime of doing journalism, I made two main criticisms of the Guardian.

    A decade ago, remember, the newspaper worked closely in collaboration with Assange and Wikileaks to publish the Iraq and Afghan war diaries, which are now the grounds on which the US is basing its case to lock Assange behind bars in a super-max jail.

    My first criticism was that the paper had barely bothered to cover the hearing, even though it is the most concerted attack on press freedom in living memory. That position is unconscionably irresponsible, given its own role in publishing the war diaries. But sadly it is not inexplicable. In fact, it is all too easily explained by my second criticism. …..

    Read more…

    https://www.jonathan-cook.net/blog/2020-09-26/guardian-assange-denial-deceptions/

    • tc 8.1

      Yup also the Guardians role in Corbyn's demise show they're happy playing the establishments game rather than doing actual journalism.

      Guardians former CEO is now running the EPL after their 2 previous choices both said yes…then no to a role worth about 2mill UK p.a.

      So IMO he's in the club and been rewarded for a job well done at the Guardian.

  9. aj 9

    Moon Lecture Series: Chris Hedges

    Chris Hedges is another eloquent eloquent American political activist in the mould of Chomsky and Zinn. In this November 2013 lecture at the St Mark UMC, Sacremento, his gives a fascinating talk which is well summed up by one comment:

    "Not until every last tree and blade of grass is gone, will they realize you can't eat money." –Cree saying.

    "There is no way to not vote for Goldman Sachs." — Chris Hedges

    This is a long video and well worth the full 90-odd minutes, but in particular the audience questions starting on the hour. Remember, this is seven years ago, the audience members could just as easily be drawn from middle New Zealand and the subjects raised have so much more resonance given the events since then.

    Since the weather is a bit doggy over many parts of New Zealand, keep this to one side and sit down with a coffee, let the cold winds blow, the rain fall, and this will give you plenty to think about and many reason to be grateful for living in New Zealand but unsettled about the future.

  10. ScottGN 10

    There’s that old election truism – Follow the Leader – for an insight into how a campaign is going. And, lo, Ardern is swinging through Invercargill again. If Labour thinks that seat is in play then we’re in for a doozy of an election night.

    • weka 10.1

      Invercargill has been held by Labour in the past.

      Looking at the 2017 election,

      Nat 18,102 51%

      Lab 12,523 35.3%

      NZF 3,214 9%

      GP 1,623 4.6%

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invercargill_(New_Zealand_electorate)#2014_election

      Ardern might be after the party vote, and setting up Invercargill for 2023.

      • Robert Guyton 10.1.1

        Liz Craig will get my vote.

        Party vote Green.

      • Graeme 10.1.2

        Looking at the numbers for party vote and electorate, the electorate seems to follow the nationwide party vote for both the candidate and party. When there's a Labour led government it's generally a Labour seat, and when National's in power it's blue. Maybe an exception for Eric Roy, but he had cross party abilities. Apply the current swing and it could be very much in play.

    • Graeme 10.2

      I'm expecting National to throw a few new candidates in currently blue seats under the bus to preserve senior list MPs, so Penny could be going back to her old job. Invercargill has been red in past and there's a very capable Labour candidate down there in Liz Craig. An announcement on the ongoing utilisation of the Manapouri electricity, preferably by something better for Southland and New Zealand than an aluminium smelter could easily swing it.

      Even Southland may be not as safe as it's traditionally been after the efforts of National's bright young hopes, and Labour selecting a very capable local candidate.

    • Pat 10.3

      "The Labour Party is now pledging to extend the life of the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter in Southland by three-to-five years, including allowing the smelter owner to negotiate a cheaper power price – something Labour had appeared to explicitly rule out earlier"

      https://www.interest.co.nz/business/107254/labour-aims-three-five-year-extension-life-southland-smelter-including-supporting

      • Stuart Munro 10.3.1

        Sensible probably. Onslow, if it gets the nod, will take at least that long to come online.

        • Pat 10.3.1.1

          but wasnt sensible 2 months ago?

          • Stuart Munro 10.3.1.1.1

            As an ongoing commitment it still isn't sensible. But if Onslow is the way they go, then there's a three to five year window for Comalco – at least.

            I think Onslow is a poor choice myself, and not just because I've been known to harry the unsophisticated browns of the Teviot river.

            In an environment where government is making such poor decisions that it's funding hydrogen , the smart energy move lies in a roll out of a quite different technology.

            Rather than rely on the development of the multiple technologies required to distribute hydrogen, a zero sum proposition at best, NZ's energy infrastructure would benefit most from a superconducting cable, which would put South Island power where it is needed without transmission losses or the dubious efficiency pumped storage proposition that is Onslow.

            Superconductors must be seriously cooled, but in addition to conductivity they demonstrate the interesting property of diamagnetism. This would make a refrigerated superconductor conduit the ideal track bed for a maglev train. Moreover, this is a high tech industry in which NZ has some expertise.

            Not holding my breath of course. When was the last time NZ dared to lead the world?

            • Pat 10.3.1.1.1.1

              It wasnt sensible before and isnt sensible now…..the sensible thing to do was to have in place a plan for when the inevitable closure became current….no one (not central nor local gov, or business) bothered despite being warned for decades. Hopeless

              I dont know anything about superconductors and whether they are a sensible proposition but what I have read of hydrogen as an alternative energy source dosnt lead me to believe it is a sensible option either.

              I am however curious as to why, with a commanding lead in the polls days before they open they should change their position 180degrees….Rio Tinto playing hardball on clean up?

              • Stuart Munro

                The superconductor's edge over hydrogen is that it requires the proof of only one new technology, and that in solid state, as against the many required for hydrogen. I think it's fairly clear superconductors are a better option than hydrogen – but it's a bit like the Labour/National proposition – what isn't better than hydrogen? Or what isn't better than National?

                It could be hardball on cleanup – but Comalco is a significant work centre within the southern economy. With nothing else ready to use the electricity, and a recession looming, a temporary extension makes a lot of sense. Especially electoral sense.

                • Pat

                  If a temporary extension makes sense on that basis it made sense 2 months ago…something has changed, the question is what?

                  • Stuart Munro

                    Well it doesn't seem to be aluminium market factors. So it might be a projected decline in the Southland economy, extended negotiations finally bearing fruit, or a new or newish player entering the equation. Maybe Ngai Tahu want it.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.3.2

        I'd only support that if the government bought out the smelter – land and all.

        And then build an IC fabrication plant there.

        • Pat 10.3.2.1

          having worked at Tiwai I suspect attracting and retaining the required level of expertise for an IC industry located anywhere close may be an issue, not to mention the likely timeframe before it was productive.

          As noted earlier, if the planning had been done previously then it may well be an option, or at least we would know

          • Draco T Bastard 10.3.2.1.1

            One wonders how they manage to keep the people who work at the smelter there then.

            Time frame could be an issue but it appears a viable fabrication plant would employ 1600 or so direct jobs with a few more thousand in indirect jobs.

            And, of course, you don't actually need the expertise located at the same location as the fabrication plants as the outsourcing of IC fabrication around the world shows. So, our IC designers could stay in Auckland, Hamilton, USA with the fab plant in Bluff. And don't forget, we also have some serious silicon deposits that could be developed around the country.

            IC fabrication in NZ makes more sense then farming when it comes down to it. Less damage to the environment and a higher return.

            Yes, it would be better if they had a plan earlier but this seems to be another response to help curb the impending crunch as BAU fails due to the pandemic. Building a fab plant there builds our own resilience and, perhaps, increases export potential for the future as the aluminium export evaporates.

            • Pat 10.3.2.1.1.1

              The bulk of the tasks involved in an aluminium smelter are little more than semi skilled labour ….the degree of precision required dosnt compare to that required in a highly controlled environment…..the same applies to the maintenance and support services.

              • Draco T Bastard

                I'm pretty sure that there's enough people in Bluff that are quite capable of the skills needed for a fab plant. Just as there happen to be enough skilled people who are capable of running the outdated aluminium smelter.

                • Pat

                  I very much doubt it considering the population of Bluff is around 1700

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    There's about a 1000 people working at the smelter now:

                    One of the region's major employers the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter is closing – 1000 people will lose their jobs, and a further 1600 workers in the supply chains will also be hit hard.

                    So, yeah, seems that getting 1600 wouldn't be too difficult. Of course, that 1600 is based on the smelter that I linked to. A newer designed one or even just a smaller one could do with less.

                    • Pat

                      the workforce comes from Southland…and represents around 10% of the total workforce when supply chains included…just as fruit pickers or baristas are not going to retrain to make up for our shortage of medical professionals (in the main) nor are semi skilled labours going to become technicians anytime soon

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      just as fruit pickers or baristas are not going to retrain to make up for our shortage of medical professionals (in the main)

                      It would be interesting to know how many could and would if given the chance. I think you'll find that its more than you expect.

                      How many people with degrees leave NZ because of no suitable work?

        • Graeme 10.3.2.2

          A subsequent use for the energy doesn't have to be at Tiwai if it doesn't need the port facilities, that's why the smelter is at Tiwai.

          A silicon refinery and downstream fabrication industry should be north or west on Invercargill to be closer to the resource.

          • Draco T Bastard 10.3.2.2.1

            There are many locations around NZ where there are silica deposits. We could mine and process the silica in each place or transport to a central location.

            As Tiwai does have the port facilities and access to the power then bulk transport to it makes it already a viable place to do the processing of the silica which could be shipped from around the country in locally owned/operated ships.

            Tiwai is already there, mostly developed and I doubt that there's much demand for it from anybody else which is why I suggest that the government buy it and build the silica processing and fab plant there.

  11. ScottGN 12

    @weka 10.1

    Invercargill was solidly Labour (like most of the provincial cities) until MMP forced the inclusion of its outlying rural areas as electorates were reduced in number and enlarged in size.

    I’m not sure if Labour can ever win it back but Ardern campaigning there speaks to Labour’s momentum in the election as much as anything else.

    • Herodotus 12.1

      FFS going there to give $$millions of corporate welfare to Rio Tinto speaks of Labours momentum 🤬🤢

      IMO the blind acceptance taken by Labour acolytes is concerning.

  12. RedLogix 13

    Further to my dismay at the obduracy of NZ Health Officials on the matter of cruising yachties in the South Pacific.

    While I will determine whether permission is granted for a ship to arrive in New Zealand for humanitarian reasons on a case-by-case basis, my assessment is that the vessels in question are not facing a cyclone at present, but rather the prospect of a potential cyclone or cyclones in future. Therefore, there is no compelling need for the ships in question to arrive in New Zealand for humanitarian reasons.” “

    I will still determine whether there is a compelling reason for a ship to arrive in New Zealand for humanitarian reasons on a case-by-case basis, should a cyclone arise in anyone location.”

    I appreciate that my decision will come as a disappointment to you and your members. However, I hope that clarity on my decision will allow your members to make immediate alternative arrangements, enabling them all to secure safe harbour (e.g. in their home countries) in a timely fashion.”

    First of all the idea that a small cruising yacht averaging 5 -6 knots can somehow escape a cyclone is pure nonsense. The idea that you can wait until one has formed and then try and sail to NZ to escape it is ignorant folly.

    Secondly the idea that any of these boats can 'make alternative arrangements to get back to their home countries' reveals a complete ignorance of how the trade winds work. And the deep impracticality of what is being suggested for all but the largest vessels out there.

    Thirdly it turns out that FP has other ongoing issues with corrupt local officials passing laws making anchoring anywhere illegal and forcing boats into unsafe marinas where they can be fleeced. This has arisen as a direct response to the locals realising these yachties are now trapped in FP and are a vulnerable target for exploitation.

    As a measure of how desperate these people are one yacht decided that their least worst option was to sail here anyway.

    As a consequence:

    He said this included "being detained in custody, being removed from New Zealand, losing their ability to return to New Zealand as a visa-free national and potentially risking increased difficulties travelling to other countries internationally after they've been removed."

    And presumably they now lose their boat and home as well. Well done NZ!

    • Andre 13.1

      You got a link for the assertion that "… FP has other ongoing issues with corrupt local officials passing laws making anchoring anywhere illegal and forcing boats into unsafe marinas where they can be fleeced. This has arisen as a direct response to the locals realising these yachties are now trapped in FP and are a vulnerable target for exploitation." ?

      It 's not apparent to me that French Polynesia is a cyclone risk above and beyond New Zealand even during El Nino conditions when cyclone risk is highest. Let alone that the forecast for the coming season is about 60% for neutral and 40% La Nina, with very low risk of it becoming El Nino.

      https://www.bwsailing.com/cyclones-in-french-polynesia/

      https://public.wmo.int/en/our-mandate/climate/el-ni%C3%B1ola-ni%C3%B1a-update

      • RedLogix 13.1.1

        So are you telling us the FP is some kind of hurricane free zone? Because it only takes one.

        Nor are all of them in FP, others are in much more exposed locations.

        It 's not apparent to me that French Polynesia is a cyclone risk above and beyond New Zealand

        NZ has safe marinas or hard stands where vessels can ride out bad storms, while in the South Pacific generally they are very thin on the ground.

        Why the assumption that these people are trying to get to NZ in bad faith? Why assume that you know more about the realities they face than they do?

        And consider the small but non-zero possibility of lives being lost as a result of this. Care to see Ardern on TV trying to justify her govts decision making on this?

        My point is that the DG of Health's reasoning in his response to the OCC's request is completely flawed and wrong. They're health experts and are the wrong people to be making a decision relating to this issue.

        • Andre 13.1.1.1

          I've had tickling in the back of my head from my time doing engineering for the yachting industry that French Polynesia reputedly didn't have a particular cyclone hazard, so when the repeated assertions came up the yachties wanted to come here from FP citing cyclone hazard as the reason, I finally went looking for evidence and facts. What I've found so far backs that vague recollection that it's not a hazard. So I now expect those asserting it to be a significant risk to produce evidence backing up that assertion.

          So far most of the noise about yachties wanting to come here has been about those from FP. Those germans caught doing their bandit run were, apparently they left from Taiohae, which is a fair ways northeast of Tahiti and even further from common cyclone tracks.

          As for bad faith, I'm not the one asking for special privileges and making assertions that appear contrary to actual facts in support of those pleas for special privileges.

          And the question of backing up the assertion about yachties getting fleeced by corrupt local officials remains open.

          • RedBaronCV 13.1.1.1.1

            From all the available literature FP doesn't have a cyclone issue – some parts of the 5 groups have never been hit by cyclones.

            We should also consider the small but non zero possibility that lives could be lost on a long 21 day blue water passage. There were issues when covid first struck of people at sea struggling to find a port that will take them but there have been no further reports of people being endlessly at sea.

            • RedLogix 13.1.1.1.1.1

              some parts of the 5 groups have never been hit by cyclones.

              These islands groups are places you visit with careful seamanship, with a constant concern for anchoring safely and changing conditions. You don't have large sheltered harbours with safe places to leave the boat for a year until hopefully the COVID restrictions are lifted.

              A low risk of cyclone is not zero risk. Want to put your life on the line with this?

        • Andre 13.1.1.2

          As far as the health argument goes, yeah I agree the risk from a small crew doing a multi-week passage appears very low. And that what residual infection risk remains is very easily managed. So that doesn't strike me as good grounds for rejection. Further, allowing them to come would be a good way of helping a struggling industrial sector stay afloat.

          But my wariness is definitely raised to high alert levels when it appears outright bullshit is being claimed as their reason for wanting to be given special privileges to come.

          • RedLogix 13.1.1.2.1

            Andre, thanks for acknowledging the obvious, that the COVID risk from this group is tiny and does not constitute grounds for rejection.

            As for their claim, well put it this way. Since forever the iron-clad rule has been for small vessels to get the fuck out of the tropics during the cyclone season. They're just too dangerous and unpredictable to take risks with. It's easy for a bunch of keyboard experts to say whatever they want from their safe and comfortable homes, it's quite different when it's your life, your family and your home on the line.

            And for what gain? All the DG of Health is doing with this decision is making himself look obdurate and ignorant with this decision. It’s the sort of blanket response we might have expected back in March at the beginning of this crisis, but it’s September now and we know far more about this virus and how it’s properly managed.

    • McFlock 13.2

      Interesting – French Polynesia has banned yachties from freedom-camping?

      • Gabby 13.2.1

        I thought there was a bit of an issue with metro france forcing fr polynesia to stay open for business.

        • McFlock 13.2.1.1

          Yeah ISTR reading similar, but banning anchoring except at a marina is an interesting way to manage tourism. Could be the water version of moteliers getting pissy about freedom campers not giving them their money, but also might have environmental benefits. No dragging anchors over corals or what have you.

          • RedLogix 13.2.1.1.1

            No dragging anchors over corals or what have you.

            Again all yachties I know will avoid this like hell. It's not just bad environmentally, but absolutely invites getting the rode hopelessly tangled and worst case loosing the anchor.

            Usually in most lagoons they'll find a sandy patch of bottom and then after anchoring, they'll free dive down to check it's safe and secure away from any coral. After all it's the environment they sailed all that way to see, why would they want to harm it?

            • McFlock 13.2.1.1.1.1

              So it doesn't ever happen?

              lol

              • RedLogix

                Would it matter if it did? The tiny impact of a few bad anchoring events is easily repaired by the coral over time. Again you seem to have no idea just how big an area we're talking about here.

                You're straining at gnats here.

                • McFlock

                  lol I'm not the one pretending that the only reason for restricting anchorages is cash while acknowledging that environmental damage to popular anchorages might actually occur.

                  • RedLogix

                    As both myself and Stuart have pointed out, damaging coral is something all sailors avoid for a bunch of very good reasons. Not the least of which is that loosing an anchor in a remote place can be a very big deal.

                    Using it as an excuse to impose blanket restrictions that have the obvious impact of forcing boats into expensive and already overcrowded marinas is transparently bad faith.

                    And honestly I can barely be arsed with your bad faith arguments either.

                    • McFlock

                      Actually, no. Stuart said "most". You keep saying "all". That is a patently bullshit assertion to make about human behaviour. When challenged, you claimed that any damage is "easily repaired by the coral over time". Coral that is globally in danger.

                      As for the expensive and overcrowded marinas, diddums. The world doesn't revolve around people who have the dream of living rent-free in a tropical paradise.

                    • RedLogix

                      That is a patently bullshit assertion to make about human behaviour.

                      As I've pointed out yachties are highly motivated not to loose their anchor, it’s essential gear, and expensive to replace. And everyone knows that wrapping it around a bommie is one of many good ways to do this. So I'd maintain that for all practical purposes all yachties avoid anchoring on coral if at all possible.

                      This doesn't rule out the possibility of something unintentionally going wrong now and then. But to assert this presents any kind of environmental problem compared to the vast scale of coral reefs around the world is a pitiful and truly vacant argument. I honestly don't know what kind of point you're trying score here, but it's an unusually worthless one even by your standards.

                    • RedLogix

                      As for the expensive and overcrowded marinas, diddums. The world doesn't revolve around people who have the dream of living rent-free in a tropical paradise.

                      Right there … the stink of envy.

                    • McFlock

                      Freeloaders often regard contempt as "envy".

                      Polluters often regard the damage they cause as tiny compared to the scale of what they damaged or the impact of something else – and ignore the fact that damage is cumulative.

                      All to make life more convenient for them, and damn the effects on anyone else.

                    • RedLogix

                      ignore the fact that damage is cumulative.

                      And ignoring that coral is a living system and repairs itself from storms that cause damage on a far larger scale than a few miserable anchors.

                      Your term 'freeloader' is a prerogative term revealing nothing your own mean spirited prejudices. Sailing oceans is an ancient human activity, with it's own deep traditions and hard-working communities you seem to want to willfully mis-represent for your own reasons. Indeed now it seems you hold all sea-farers in contempt. Your own words.

                      If that's the spirit motivating your conversation here … I want nothing more to do with you.

                    • McFlock

                      There are lots of ancient human activities that no longer have carte blanch due to national boundaries or resource scarcity.

                      To whit (because you obviously didn't bother reading the link when I posted it earlier – so I put the especially relevant bits in italics within the blockquote):

                      “Unfortunately it is a complex issue and in part relates to the explosion in the number of cruisers in the area after the law changed to allow boats to stay three years instead of three months. This means there are a lot more boats crowding anchorages near peoples’ homes.

                      “Many feel like they are being invaded and that their hospitality is being taken advantage of. When you couple that with the increased pressures on the environment from anchoring in coral for example as there are fewer available spots with sand, it is easy to see why there are protests and regulations intending to control cruisers’ behavior.”

                      And avoiding marina costs sure seems like they want to anchor where they like for free.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Maybe I should get a Covid-19 test.

                      https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/why-covid-19-makes-people-lose-their-sense-of-smell1/

                      Seriously RL, is envy the only reason you can think of as to why some a concerned that foreign yachties might get special consideration in their efforts to migrate to NZ? Another low threshold, IMHO.

                    • RedLogix

                      And I implicitly addressed this earlier. Yes there are a handful of traditional spots (like some tramping tracks in NZ for instance) where the locals are feeling the pressure from visitors. The answer is to manage those spots better, with booking systems to control numbers, reliable mooring balls to eliminate the need to anchor, and good services for managing waste for instance.

                      The answer is not to issue blanket bans on anchoring across the whole island group, no matter how isolated or whether the location is even inhabited or not. That's the equivalent of saying that because some tramping tracks are overcrowded we're going to stop all tramping across the whole country. Nutso and bad faith.

                      @DMK

                      Nah … no-one is going to come out and admit to being envious or resentful. But there is a good reason why we have a word for it. And McFlock here is ticking a lot of my boxes around the definition of it.

                    • McFlock

                      How people regulate their own territory (especially choosing to not simply displace the problem to as yet unimpacted anchorages) is their own business.

                      There is no right of "ancient human activity" for tourists to come in and park up wherever they want, be it an anchorage in a tropical paradise or a haven to refit and keep their insurance coverage.

                      By the way, I have no innate longing to go sailing or to go to FP, so I'm not sure "envy" really applies. But then your radar pings "it's them, not me" whenever someone disagrees with you.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Fair enough RL – by the same token I doubt many here would "come out and admit to being envious or resentful" when they’re not, just to support your reckons.

                      You seem to be the principal mindreader in this thread, and IMHO your (extra)sensory perception apparatus needs adjustment. But maybe it's convenient to believe that commenters who critique your opinions are envious – yes, that would make sense.

                      https://www.psychologytoday.com/nz/blog/think-well/201910/understanding-narcissism-and-narcissistic-rage

          • Stuart Munro 13.2.1.1.2

            Most folk try to keep anchors away from coral – it's a good way to lose them.

      • RedLogix 13.2.2

        Anchoring in sheltered waters is not the same as 'freedom camping'. Except in a relatively small number of places, there is no infringement on the locals enjoyment or use of their sea front. All yachties nowdays are generally scrupulous about protecting coral from anchoring damage and causing any environmental damage. Most are more conscious of this than the locals. We are talking after all about a few hundred boats in the vastness of the Pacific, to suggest they have any detrimental collective impact is kind of silly really.

        Nah, word on the net is that some locals with a bit of power see yachts as floating ATM's to be squeezed. This happens in many places from time to time, usually the word gets out and the place is avoided for a few years until things settle down. Unfortunately NZ and Australia's stupid decision making here is only exacerbating matters at the moment.

        • RedBaronCV 13.2.2.1

          And how would we know which few hundred boats they are. Or could they be joined by others streaming out of say the USA/

          • RedLogix 13.2.2.1.1

            Do you have any evidence of this claim? In reality these people are networked together pretty well, and any obvious freeloaders would be sussed pretty quick.

            Clearly the people who qualify for an exemption would be those who departed from the Eastern Pacific in the good faith expectation that they would be able to reach either NZ or Australia in a safe and timely fashion … before the COVID crisis fucked things up.

            • RedBaronCV 13.2.2.1.1.1

              So our border policy should be enforced by a bunch of unknown to our government yachties detecting freeloaders? Or do we wonder if money talks!

              But we have refused them as there are no compelling reasons. I don't see that we have an obligation to preserve their lifestyle no matter what their pre covid expectations were. Plenty of people expected a lot of things that are now not viable.

              • RedLogix

                So our border policy should be enforced by a bunch of unknown to our government yachties detecting freeloaders?

                Really, do you think it's beyond the wit and ability of the Ministry and OCC to co-operate and create an agreed on criteria? That a list of boats cannot be drawn up and then given exemptions? This isn't some open-ended exercise as you are implying.

                This is what competent bureaucrats do all the time.

        • McFlock 13.2.2.2

          lol and all freedom campers were generally scrupulous about where they crapped, when you asked them.

          Maybe yachties distribute their movements equally around the Pacific. But maybe they place pressures on some anchorages, and some of them leave more than footprints on the sand.

          And even if they are viewed as floating ATMs… so? It's not their country, they are there by the grace of the inhabitants. Maybe they should pay for the privilege.

          • RedLogix 13.2.2.2.1

            It's not their country, they are there by the grace of the inhabitants. Maybe they should pay for the privilege.

            Generally they do. There are almost always costs to enter any country, and they typically spend on supplies and some entertainment. Overall cruisers are always a net benefit to the local community.

            As I implied above, there are of course a few hot spots that local authorities need to manage, no-one objects to this. But blanket bans on anchoring anywhere in the vast reef systems and remote atolls is completely unjustified.

            And certainly it’s one more factor in why many people are trying to leave, it’s not just the risk of cyclones driving them off.

            • McFlock 13.2.2.2.1.1

              It's a boat. They don't have to come here.

              FP can do what they want with their tourism sector. Yachties chose to go there, now they choose to come here. Maybe they should choose to go somewhere else.

              So, "generally", if they come where they are not wanted they can get a free plane ride home in exchange for their boat. Seems fair.

              • RedLogix

                It's a boat. They don't have to come here.

                Again the ignorance of people who've never been to sea. For the large majority of small craft and crews who set off across the Pacific to travel the trade wind route westward, eventually arriving in either NZ or Australia is the only practical outcome.

                Yes it's possible to sail back upwind, but that is a very slow and difficult undertaking. Beyond the endurance of most crew. And yes you can sail to about 45 deg South or North and find winds that will take you back, but again we're talking much more dangerous conditions most crew are not going to tackle.

                And even then when you get back to say Panama, there are still formidable COVID related issues travelling the Caribbean and Atlantic.

                So no, small craft generally just don't go anywhere they please. There are well defined sailing routes that are practical for most people, and only a handful of the most experienced and capable deviate from them.

        • greywarshark 13.2.2.3

          Red Logix – the come-back man, never lost for argumentation.

          • RedLogix 13.2.2.3.1

            Better an argument than a personal attack in my book.

            • McFlock 13.2.2.3.1.1

              So accusing people of envy is plan b, then?

              • RedLogix

                When you start acting it out then yes.

                There are virtually no rational grounds for rejecting exemptions from these people, so I'm naturally left to speculate on what the irrational motivations must be.

                From the politicians I can guess that it's an arse covering exercise with an election just weeks away. From the commenters here … it's much less obvious.

                • Pat

                  The government have been under intense pressure from various interests for 'exemptions' from the border controls and have largely resisted WITH the support from the overwhelming majority of commenters and the electorate…..why would you expect any different for this group?

                  • McFlock

                    Probably yearns for a tall ship and a star to guide her by (and exemption from all border controls just because he doesn't use an engine most of the time).

                  • RedLogix

                    The DG's reasoning is wrong :

                    One: Small vessels traditionally 'winter over' outside of the tropics because while the risk to anyone boat in any given year of being hit by a cyclone is small (and may well be quite small this year), the outcome is almost always catastrophic. Every responsible boat owner endeavours to either be in one of the few safe harbours in the area, or out of it. No-one wants to deal with an emergency during a storm, or a wreck afterwards. This is a long established good marine practice.

                    Secondly, small vessels simply cannot choose to escape from a cyclone if one threatens. They simply are not fast enough to do this safely. The DG implies this is possible, and is completely wrong on this point. Worse still the DG implies they can seek ‘safe harbour’ in their homeports, which reveals a total ignorance of the reality for these people.

                    Thirdly, the objective COVID risk of these people is much smaller than anyone routinely arriving by plane every day. And is much easier and cheaper to manage as they effectively do managed quarantine on their own vessels on arrival. They've offered every co-operation with officials and are highly likely to comply with any protocols. Quarantine after all is a very old marine practice. Hell they even carry a yellow flag for it.

                    Fourthly, many boats will indeed refit and spend money in NZ. On a multi-year circumnavigation, NZ is the obvious and often best location to do this work. There is an economic case to allow them in.

                    And finally NZ cannot remain closed forever. There was a sound case for a total lockdown six months ago; now we have in place both the knowledge and systems to manage COVID risks effectively.

                    • Gabby

                      So how would these fullas usually get home? Given that they can't just turn around.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      "There was a sound case for a total lockdown six months ago; now we have in place both the knowledge and systems to manage COVID risks effectively."

                      RL, three days ago you opined that "We still have some way to go to properly understand the epidemiology of this virus." I agree – as the number of people currently infected with COVID-19 continues to rise (from slightly under 7 million at the begining of Sept, to 7.67 million yesterday), caution is still justified.

                      "Wear a mask, you over-covident bastard." [groan]

                    • Pat

                      " There was a sound case for a total lockdown six months ago; now we have in place both the knowledge and systems to manage COVID risks effectively."

                      So now youve expanded your argument to state that we should now reopen our borders for (dubious) economic reasons and yacht's are incidental….bit dishonest framing it as a humanitarian case dont you think?

                    • RedLogix

                      Pat

                      I stated five related reasons, the economic one being perhaps the least of them, but for the businesses affected an important one all the same.

                      In a nutshell however yes we need to start thinking about re-opening our borders in a controlled, intelligent fashion. These people are to my mind have a reasonable case to be at the front of the queue, very low risk and if you understand sailing at all, they have a decent case.

                      The converse argument that NZ must somehow keep everyone out until COVID is eliminated from the world might appeal to the closet xenophobes around here, but it's utterly nuts.

                      Isolating the entire country indefinitely has no virtue in of itself. The underlying point of the lockdowns and travel bans was to buy us some time to get better defenses in place. In my view we've done that, and it's time to carefully move on to the next phase of the game. We now have the testing, tracking and treatment options to prevent COVID from becoming a crisis.

                      That it's also become a political virtue for Ardern's govt is nice for the left, but it's a milk that has a use by date.

                    • Pat

                      Have you been taking lessons from Wayne?

                      "The converse argument that NZ must somehow keep everyone out until COVID is eliminated from the world might appeal to the closet xenophobes around here, but it's utterly nuts."

                      Disingenuous ….the general opinion is we should remain suitably precautious until such time as we have an effective vaccine or treatment or are confident in our ability to trace and isolate the required number of any potential outbreak…..that means unnecessary additional risk is not desired.

                    • RedLogix

                      or treatment or are confident in our ability to trace and isolate the required number of any potential outbreak

                      If you had been paying attention the answer to this is yes. Case fatality rates globally have been dropping dramatically because nine months in we're much better at treating it.

                      And if our tracing and isolating capacity isn't up to scratch by now, it never will. Back in April I would have agreed generally with everyone else here about the unnecessary risk, but the ground has shifted.

                      More to the point these are not the arguments that the DG of Health has used to reject exemptions for these people. The ones he has given are based on a completely wrong understanding of the situation. As so many others on this thread have demonstrated.

                    • Pat

                      We have a limited capacity to trace and treat and isolate the cases we have and importantly we are aware of those limitations….and why we dont desire any unnecessary risk

                    • RedLogix

                      So how would these fullas usually get home? Given that they can't just turn around.

                      Some always planned to finish here in Aus/NZ and sell the boat. But to complete a circumnavigation many will carry on to SE Asia, then across the Indian Ocean to Madagascar, South Africa and then back up the South Atlantic to either the Caribbean or Europe. This is generally called 'tropical trade wind' sailing. While a yacht can sail upwind, it's only done in short legs and is much slower and more arduous. Most crews of ordinary people can only tolerate a three or four days of it before exhaustion sets in.

                      The professional racers doing events like the Volvo use the opposite wind systems in the deep Southern Ocean, just skirting the iceberg limit. Completely different people and boats. Total masochists to a man and woman.

                    • RedLogix

                      We have a limited capacity to trace and treat and isolate the cases we have and importantly we are aware of those limitations

                      Really? Are you telling us the NZ Health system is that weak that it can't manage a few hundred extra people arriving in a totally planned fashion with an exceptionally low risk profile?

                      TBH I'm actually quite shocked that you should think this is the case, because the risk of new clusters arising from travellers coming to NZ by plane every day must be at least an order of magnitude greater. Are you telling us NZ really can't handle that?

                      Because it’s certainly not the reason the DG of Health gave for rejecting their application for an exemption.

                    • Pat

                      You ignore the precedent setting impact…but then like all interests that is par for the course.

                      You can be as shocked as you like, there is no appetite to provide (unnecessary) refuge to non nationals especially when our own citizens have considerable difficulty returning home as it is.

                    • RedLogix

                      You can be as shocked as you like,

                      Well yes. Is it public knowledge that NZ's testing and tracing regime really so weak it cannot manage the very modest extra risk these people present? Unnecessary or not?

                      If this really is true at this stage of the pandemic, the DG of Health has some very serious questions to answer.

                      As for ‘precedent setting impact’, that really is a very weak argument. Doing the right thing, especially when it is inconvenient or uncomfortable is a mark of integrity. And fool can look good when it’s easy to do.

                • McFlock

                  The grounds are that they don't meet the criteria for exemptions.

                  Vessels needed a compelling reason to get an exemption, such as refuelling or resupplying or delivering to a business for repairing or refitting. Exemptions could also be granted for humanitarian reasons, but this was unlikely to be granted solely for financial loss or for vessels "wintering over" – a common practice by boats during the Pacific's cyclone season.

            • greywarshark 13.2.2.3.1.2

              Why should that be a personal attack RL 4.31pm? You are too sensitive. I am just amazed at your capacity for renewal when others would be exhausted and running on empty. What battery do you use? Reminds me of the Energizer bunny.

              • Incognito

                I’d like to think that RL made a reference, not pointing a finger (at you). This site encourages robust debate but sometimes commenters need to be reminded to dial it back a little. When one doesn’t have a good argument, it is usually better to say nothing or agree to disagree, respectfully.

    • RedBaronCV 13.3

      Losing the boat seems to be just a guess by you? Smaller yachts can be sent as cargo on mainstream shipping. AFAIK this is how the America's cup yachts arrived here so. Or it could be stored in a marina or out of the water until other arrangements can be made. No doubt this could be done in the islands too while the people depart for home.

      As to FP shaking people down. Security and defence still seem to be in the hands of France. A massive complaint to ambassadors or home country politicians who can then complain to France might be in order. Other EU citizens should have the inside running there. But these are are not personal safety issues they are money matters. And yes I get that people sold up etc etc but there has been a huge personal and financial downside to a lot of people.

      I do feel that it is somewhat dishonest to imply there are personal safety issues when in fact the motivation is financial or lifestyle. They could at least present their issues honestly.

      • RedLogix 13.3.1

        Smaller yachts can be sent as cargo on mainstream shipping.

        Have you any idea of the cost of this from these small Pacific Island nations? Or even if it's possible?

        To give you an idea, it's around A$30k to get a modest monohull from Australia to NZ alone. These people are not America's Cups sailors with budgets to match.

        They could at least present their issues honestly.

        Ever been anywhere near a cyclone? Two years ago I was in Weipa when we where hammered by not once but three times by several Cat 2 -3 storms. The first time I was working out at the end of a 1km long wharf, unsheltered from the Gulf. A massive steel structure and I could feel it moving. Looking at the huge swells crashing through, the idea of being caught out at sea in those conditions did strike me as a matter of personal safety.

        • RedBaronCV 13.3.1.1

          I was referring to the Germans who landed here – they have not necessarily lost their boat – there are other choices – and yes I have seen the bills for this sort of shipping.

          And people are losing homes if they can't pay mortgages- it's finance not personal safety.

          As to the storms – where are the links backing up the safety issues.

          Also isn't Australia saying no too?

          • RedLogix 13.3.1.1.1

            Are you now claiming that there is zero cyclone risk to all of these boats in the South Pacific? Maybe we should tell their insurance companies this wonderful news.

            As for your evident glee that these people might lose their boats/homes because of some ignorant reasoning from the DG of Health, I'm so impressed.

            As I've shown several times already, these people represent an incredibly low COVID risk, far lower than the much larger number of people arriving by plane every day. What does NZ actually gain by banning them again? Nothing.

            • Pat 13.3.1.1.1.1

              may be a low covid risk but are a very high precedent risk

            • Poission 13.3.1.1.1.2

              Globally at present there are NO tropical storms.

              NZ being a mid latitude country is always at the risk of great synoptic storms,as at present.For their own safety they should not sail.

              https://climatereanalyzer.org/wx_frames/gfs/ds/gfs_nh-sat6_mslp_1-day.png

              • RedLogix

                So you are guaranteeing on this basis there will be no more cyclones this season. Anywhere in the world?

                Because just two weeks ago there were five systems in the North Atlantic alone and three of them named. I'm curious to know exactly what's changed in the past few days that means there won't be anymore this year. Because that's what's relevant here.

                For their own safety they should not sail.

                Getting from the Pacific down to NZ is always a bit of a weather challenge, but they all understand the need to choose the right weather window.

            • Drowsy M. Kram 13.3.1.1.1.3

              "As for your evident glee"

              Not seeing that “glee” myself RL (is it something to do with the "rich pricks" meme?) – just trying to understand whether globe-trotting yachtie foreigners have at strong case for special treatment in the midst of a global pandemic.

              And, like RedBaronCV, I'd be interested to know the stance of the Australian government on this issue – perhaps someone in Australia who is following this thread could enlighten us.

            • RedBaronCV 13.3.1.1.1.4

              This is an argument that I am over.

              I see no reason why we take financial and lifestyle downsides into account for just this group. Lots of others have issues too – and as Pat says above it sets a precedent.

              As for safety Andre at 13.1.1.1 – links to the actual facts show very low or non existent risks but they are being used to support the pleadings.

              As for bad faith, I'm not the one asking for special privileges and making assertions that appear contrary to actual facts in support of those pleas for special privileges.

              And further down
              But my wariness is definitely raised to high alert levels when it appears outright bullshit is being claimed as their reason for wanting to be given special privileges to come.

              The MSM should present an accurate picture. Based on the available evidence NZ is not forcing people into cyclone country.

              • RedLogix

                I see no reason why we take financial and lifestyle downsides into account for just this group.

                At no point has anyone established what the downsides of exempting them is. The COVID risk is laughably small. The OCC group has offered to help establish any protocols necessary to address any concerns, but really it's a non-issue.

                And that's it. What other 'downsides' are there? Apart from the 'precedent' of a Labour govt been seen to be giving a break to a bunch of 'rich pricks' that is? Right before an election.

            • RedBaronCV 13.3.1.1.1.5

              The " evident glee" is uncalled for. Financial outcomes can cover things like onshore storage, extra insurance depending on the actual marina moored in, going to the USA and then sending the boat home or storing it there etc etc. Regardless there are other choices.

              Apparently in past years boats have been shipped back to northern europe from SE Asia to avoid the dodgy northern indian ocean horn of Africa,

              There is no reason they are going to necessarily lose the lot – whatever the lot may be.

              • RedLogix

                Again you seem to have the idea that the typical yachtie is made of money. Yes people do ship boats around, but they'd be a smallish minority really.

                In fact quite a few arrive in NZ flat broke, and either hard-stand it for a year or two while they refill the cruising kitty, or sell it locally if they don't want to go any further.

                And keep in mind, for many this boat is something they've worked hard on for years and it's their home. A force sale isn't something you'd lightly choose or wish on anyone really. Not when there is no valid reason for doing so.

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  Like RedBaronCV, I'd be interested to know the stance of the Australian government on this issue – perhaps someone in Australia who is following started this thread could enlighten us.

                  • RedLogix

                    I'm only going on the info from the OCC link above:

                    After last-ditch effort letters to both Prime Ministers, yesterday the Ocean Cruising Club received formal rejections by both Australia and New Zealand.

                    And:

                    Yesterday the OCC received the following from Australian Border Force:

                    “The Commissioner has considered the request and has decided the following:

                    • There is no impediment to the Australian citizen and permanent residents travelling to Australia.
                    • The grounds for compelling/compassionate circumstances are not met.
                    • The inability to get insurance is not on a basis on which to grant an exemption.
                    • There is no information to support the proposition that any of the travellers or vessels regularly come to Australia.
                    • The travellers may wish to consider other options in relation to the travel/cyclone season.
                    • The travellers may wish to consider whether they may present as a significant economic activity for a State or Territory and seek their support.”

                    Given most would arrive somewhere in QLD where there is State PM determined to keep the borders closed, I doubt there would be any political support from that quarter either. In effect the Australian's are also saying 'seek alternate options' knowing full well there are none.

                • RedBaronCV

                  No I don't think they are made of money that was your assumption- if anything like a lot of the air travellers that were here when covid struck – I suspect many don't have a lot to fall back on- much like many locals trying to buy groceries.

                  So they arrive here flat broke does that mean they want work permits or charity? Would they come if they had to leave immediately after storing or selling the boat?

                  Does coming here just delay their decision making day?
                  From the links above part of the beef seems to be how they are being treated in FP. That's something to get onto their elected representatives and diplomatic personnel about. It's not a safety issue.

                  • RedLogix

                    So they arrive here flat broke does that mean they want work permits or charity?

                    In the past yes, typically the younger ones might do seasonal or hospitality work up to the limit of their permits. Or hop over the Tasman and work in the extensive backpacker work schemes over there. Or if they had funds they might do a modest backpacker thing around NZ and contribute to the local economy while doing so.

                    All of this is of course on hold for the time being, so I'd imagine most would probably get their boat stored somewhere safe and fly home until things sorted themselves out.

                    Charity … no. Honestly sailing people have to be the most self-reliant and personally responsible people you'll meet anywhere; it's the last thing they'd ask for.

                • McFlock

                  So:

                  Fourthly, many boats will indeed refit and spend money in NZ. On a multi-year circumnavigation, NZ is the obvious and often best location to do this work. There is an economic case to allow them in.

                  and a couple of hours earlier:

                  In fact quite a few arrive in NZ flat broke, and either hard-stand it for a year or two while they refill the cruising kitty, or sell it locally if they don't want to go any further.

                  Talk about having it both ways…

                  • RedLogix

                    Are you only able to think in reductionist sound-bites? Yachties are a diverse bunch, from the reasonably well-heeled in big cats, through to old sea dogs barely making 4 knots in elderly old boats. Some are young and living on grubby shoe strings, others have retired early or sold businesses and live on a very structured budget, while others are making the most of their last few years of active life to have an adventure.

                    I indicated some numbers a few days back. The value range for typical monohulls would be NZ$200-400k, while catamarans would be double that. Their annual running costs would be from $NZ30k up to maybe NZ$100k at the most. These are pretty middle class, non-startling numbers along with a big range of financial positions. But when they're at sea they're the most generous, high trust and egalitarian community anywhere.

                    It's a different life to being on land, with it's own different set of challenges and rewards. The idea they're all freeloading in paradise would strike most as pretty funny, and the average landlubber would be pretty surprised at just how much work it is on a daily basis. A bit like tramping (something I'm much more familiar with), it can be very rewarding but you still have to pay an entry price in terms of fitness, skill and hard work. Also many are constantly on the lookout for ways to contribute back to the world around them, to locals or the environment. For instance this guy is running a decent micro-plastic study.
                    https://oceancruisingclub.org/home/news/1416

                    But to answer your silly question, it should be obvious that not all boats arrive here all set to do a refit straight away. It all depends on the owner's cruising kitty and that varies from boat to boat dramatically. So yes I can have it both ways.

                    • McFlock

                      Working on your own home is something you choose to do. Refusing to pay rates or to abide by codes that limit your home's negative externalities is freeloading.

                      You can have it both ways if you want to half-arse it each way. Do we only let in the ones who have booked and paid for a refit, but not the ones who cannot provide "an economic case" that warrants giving them an exception? Or do you want a global exception for pleasure boaties who want to visit NZ, in which case "economic case" is just a handy distraction from your agenda?

                      Visiting NZ is not a global right. It's a privilege. Same as visiting French Polynesia.

                    • RedLogix

                      Refusing to pay rates or to abide by codes that limit your home's negative externalities is freeloading.

                      A yacht has almost no negative externality to the country it's visiting. They invariably pay entry fees of some sort (it varies a lot from country to country) and like all other visitors spend locally. By any reasonable set of accounting, they'd have to be a net benefit.

                      And if you think they just swan about the world with no regard for the laws and regulations of the many countries they visit, you really have no clue. Often there are stacks of paperwork that has to be started months in advance and on arrival a day of traipsing about finding the port authority, customs, quarantine and immigration officials who are all in different offices, all demand their bit of paper to inspect and stamp, and usually to collect a fee. And every country is different, even different ports in the same country.

                      It's actually more onerous than visiting by plane as a rule. To suggest these people are prone to thumbing their noses at authorities of the countries they've put so much effort into visiting is ludicrously wrong.

                      As for the criteria for a COVID exemption, it should be obvious that only those vessels that left the Eastern Pacific and committed to the trip over before travel bans were put in place should qualify. That's a fixed number of boats; no-one is asking for an open-ended invite to every yachtie on the planet.

                      And no I’m not really basing my argument on the economic case of a refit. It’s a factor, but in my view not a critical one. And no-one is claiming that getting to NZ is some kind of right; that’s why they’ve put so much effort into asking permission to visit.

                    • McFlock

                      The residents of French Polynesia seem to disagree with you about the externalities.

                      And if you think they just swan about the world with no regard for the laws and regulations of the many countries they visit, you really have no clue.

                      lol. The case of the most recent arrivals (and soon to be departed by air) suggests that you overstate the overall compliance with regulations.

                    • RedLogix

                      The residents of French Polynesia seem to disagree with you about the externalities.

                      The problem arose when FP extended it's visa from six months to three years, presumably because some locals thought to make more money that way. Well of course in an island group with a limited number of safe anchorages inevitably a few spots got overcrowded. But instead of managing these locations intelligently, we get a stupid and greedy overreaction that basically means that at least some of these people cannot afford to stay in FP any longer, forcing them to move on. (You wouldn't want them 'freeloading' after all.)

                      So now what?

                      Well faced with no good options we'll see some people choose the one they perceive as the least worst available to them and arrive here without permission. No-one condones it, but we've really created the situation with our own stupid refusal to grant the permission in the first place. And I'm not going to be impressed by your self-righteous whining over it.

                    • McFlock

                      jeez, both FP and NZ govts are wrong, and the yachties are sadly forced to just ignore the regulations they don't like. We refused to give them what they want, so they were forced to just take it anyway and call the government's bluff.

                      I'm not whining. I'm perfectly happy with the decision. You're the dude saying everyone is wrong except the pleasure boaters.

                    • RedLogix

                      You're the dude saying everyone is wrong except the pleasure boaters.

                      Love the victim blaming here, everyone who put them into this idiotic bureaucratic Catch 22 is wrong. They didn't ask for this mess.

                      And nice try with the sneering 'pleasure boater' quip. Yet again your mean spirited motives are showing.

                    • McFlock

                      "Victim blaming"? lol

                      It's a big ocean. There are oodles of countries to go to on their way back to Europe. Alternatively, they could store or sell the boat and leave FP by plane. They weren't forced to sail away, and they weren't forced to sail to NZ.

                      The recent arrivals are "victims" of their own hubris and sense of entitlement. Almost a million people are dead. Screw with border controls at your peril, because in a pandemic sensible governments do not fuck around.

                    • RedLogix

                      There are oodles of countries to go to on their way back to Europe.

                      Now you are pretending that I haven't explained this in detail already. The only practical destinations for these people are downwind of where they are already, and out of the cyclone zone. Those are Aus or NZ. That's it.

                      Alternatively, they could store or sell the boat and leave FP by plane.

                      FP is not a place set up to do this, it has very little safe storage and almost zero prospect of selling. Again you reveal a deep ignorance on a topic you are claiming to have such penetrating insight into.

                      They weren't forced to sail away, and they weren't forced to sail to NZ.

                      Just because they weren't forced out at gunpoint scarcely means they were not faced with impossible choices. You can call it hubris all you want, but ultimately they chose what they considered the least worst choice available to them.

                      And if it read the accounts correctly this particular crew only got word of their rejection well after they had departed FP and far too late to return to where they had started. Keep in mind that in early August and on a television interview Ardern had given every indication that the govt was going to treat these exemptions favourably.

                    • McFlock

                      Yes, they departed on their journey before submitting their request. That's the point.

                      As for "that's it", even if true (I mean, someone said people could come up with all manner of alternative arrangements, but whatevs), that's the lifestyle they chose. Nobody forced them onto the boat at gunpoint, either.

                    • RedLogix

                      Nobody forced them onto the boat at gunpoint, either.

                      And when they got onto the boat they had every reasonable expectation the journey they intended was both practical and legal. That the rules changed in an unprecedented fashion, after committing to a Pacific crossing is scarcely their fault.

                      COVID travel restrictions are an entirely man-made bunch of temporary rules, cyclones are not.

                    • McFlock

                      And when they got onto the boat they had every reasonable expectation the journey they intended was both practical and legal.

                      Surely it would be reasonable to, like, wait for the exemption to clear before starting the trip?

                      I could go with that argument if they were tooling along in early March and the world suddenly locked down on them. But they left in early-mid July without any official word they'd be let in? That's taking the piss.

                    • RedLogix

                      But they left in early-mid July without any official word they'd be let in? That's taking the piss.

                      You are mixing up the instances I'm referring to.

                      One is the singular case of the German crew who left the FP area sometime late in August I think, based on indications at the time that the NZ govt was going to consider these applications favourably. That it didn't work out that way is unfortunate for them, but scarcely taking the piss.

                      The more general case I'm talking about is that people who left the Eastern Pacific before the COVID crisis, had every reasonable expectation at the time that completing the Pacific crossing was both legal and practical. Instead half way across they find themselves unable to complete the journey, trapped in FP that is now naturally overcrowded and is making staying there untenable, and no safe downwind destinations that will accept them.

                      In a nutshell many can no longer stay where they are, but there is nowhere they can practically and legally move on to. How hard is this to understand?

                      The solution to this entails a negligible cost and risk to NZ by any practical measure, except of course political.

                    • McFlock

                      The Germans are a subset of the wider case. They gave similar reasons – oh noes, possibility of cyclone, don't wanna leave my boat, need to leave FP.

                      It turns out that in covid, that particular lifestyle cannot be sustained by some people.

                    • RedLogix

                      It turns out that in covid, that particular lifestyle cannot be sustained by some people.

                      Which translates to 'who cares, lets fuck them over because it suits the purely political narrative I want to support'.

                      Another moral compass calibrated …

                    • McFlock

                      Wanting to preserve the integrity of border controls in the time of a pandemic is preferable to wanting them arbitrarily changed to suit the lifestyle that I personally plan to take up.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      RL, this protracted 'let the yachties come" vs "keep the yachties out" stoush highlights your penchant for calibrating the moral compasses of some with the temerity to express opinions contrary to your own.

                      Regrettably, such disagreeable 'moral judgements' now 'leap out' whenever I skim your otherwise well-constructed comments – resorting to dubious ‘moral judgements‘ can weaken your case, IMHO.

            • RedBaronCV 13.3.1.1.1.6

              To be consistent they would need to go to the managed quarantine – who knows if they have had a mid ocean party or not with other boats. Otherwise at significant public expense we have to set up another different type of facility.

              There are also plenty of other groups who can also point to covid free type backgrounds. It would turbo charge all the "what about me groups" wanting to come here or set up an entry system to suit themselves. Next thing you are having arguments with everyone.

              Hence I can see why they make the test "compelling reasons" which this group have simply been unable to demonstrate.

              • RedLogix

                who knows if they have had a mid ocean party or not with other boats.

                That just doesn't happen. At worst you might get some very minor mingling at Minerva Reef where boats often shelter waiting for the next weather window, but literally by then they're all in the same position from a viral perspective and still at about a week away from getting here.

                But in general no, getting from yacht to yacht in a mid-ocean swell is difficult and might only happen in dire emergencies. And no-one has multi boat parties in mid-passage.

                Nor is there any big deal when they get here; they're going to ideally anchor up for a week or so on their own vessel (or even tied up at a marina it's easy to isolate) and undergo a few tests on the open dock. None of them would have compelling reasons to break quarantine, putting their entry exemption and vessel at risk. Far less so than the average traveler arriving by plane.

                This is a decision being made by the wrong people, based on wrong reasoning and wrong information. If you don't understand why these people are asking for an exemption then you keep getting to the wrong answer.

                And sooner or later we have to start re-opening the country anyway, we can't keep NZ locked up indefinitely or until COVID is entirely eradicated from the world. That really is an unreasonable proposition.

                • RedBaronCV

                  Yep and a lot of air travellers would love to quarantine in their own homes. A lot of universities would love to quarantine students in halls of residence and rich peeps would love to quarantine in an up market isolated retreat. No chance of anyone leaving the boat and popping down to the pub?

                  But from all your posts

                  I don't see an economic rational for letting in this group ahead of others

                  that they are likely to definitely suffer financial loss that grossly exceeds the losses that a lot of other people have already suffered – actually that prospect is low.

                  that they have a compelling safety issue based around cyclones when they don't. FP is open with flights going to quite a few places AFAIK and I have seen yachting publications in previous years suggesting leaving the boat there and flying back in the autumn.

                  And if they are going to sell then they could just as easily sell in FP surely or even horrors employ an NZ crew to sail it here.

                  They may be wonderful people with a great lifestyle and wonderful personal attributes but that does not make a "compelling reason".

                  Should Australia take them?
                  I would also really like to see the links to the right reasoning,the right people and the right information.

                  • RedLogix

                    that they have a compelling safety issue based around cyclones when they don't.

                    Which flies in the face of standard practice for decades; which is get out of the zone in the season. Are you suggesting that somehow this was all wrong and you somehow know better than this?

                    As I've said before, the risk of any single boat being hit in any given season may be low, but the consequences are not. Therefore the hazard has always been considered too high and standard insurance policies confirm this. Again why is that a whole bunch of Labour supporters suddenly know better than people whose business is to evaluate risk and ensure they stay on the profitable side of it?

                    Sure you can come up with all manner of alternative arrangements they could make, but the simplest and most compelling one to my mind is the one that people have been doing for decades, sail on downwind to Aus or NZ. Neither country is at any rational risk or downside from accepting them, and everyone would be happy.

                    But for reasons that evade me, almost everyone here is determined to be an arse about it.

                    • RedBaronCV

                      Having viewed the available evidence most people here seem to have concluded that the reason that this group wants exemption has a great deal more to do with other than safety reasons. There are closer non hurricane areas. Or they catch a plane out.

                      Australia is no more forthcoming. There is no need to be insulting. I have not seen any link from you that backs up the safety issue which is the "compelling" test. There has been a lot of other issues raised as justification. I have wondered why you seem to be so invested in the issue.

                    • In Vino

                      Having read all this through, I conclude that RedLogix knows something about keelboat cruise sailors, and the rest of you don't. There seems to be even an element of jealousy because you regard them all as rich pricks. Some may be, but many aren't. Sad intolerance and prejudice from people one would expect to know better. They are in true quarantine while at sea, and the idea that they meet up to party in the middle of the bounding main is laughable.

                      I don't do keelboats myself, but I know plenty of keelboat sailors who are far less rich than some of you seem to believe.

                    • Stuart Munro

                      Rather than requiring the yachts to prove compassionate grounds, admitting some would merely bring them into line with private jets, who really do carry rich pricks, and have entered the country since lockdown.

                    • RedLogix

                      There are closer non hurricane areas.

                      Where? Explain this magical place to me and why generations of sailing people have somehow failed to find it on the map.

                      Or they catch a plane out.

                      And effectively abandon their boat. Unless it's in an expensive marina chances are it will either be looted or lost even in a mild storm, becoming a wreck that the locals really will find a 'negative externality'.

                      I have not seen any link from you that backs up the safety issue which is the "compelling" test.

                      The DG of Health's explanation in rejecting the exemptions stated that unless they were in immediate threat of being hit by a cyclone this would not count as a compelling reason. What the DG seems unable to grasp is that cyclones move much faster than yachts and that by the time the threat is imminent it's far too late to just sail to NZ to get out of the way.

                      I don't need any links to prove my point. I'm far from being an yachting expert, but everyone who is has said the same thing. Standard practice for decades is for all small vessels to be out of the cyclone zone during the season. And this is backed up by all insurance policy exclusions. If it was as safe as all the armchair experts here claim, why do people who actually own, sail and live on boats all believe otherwise?

                      As for why I'm apparently so invested in this? Well as someone whose getting a bit too creaky to enjoy hardcore tramping like I used to my interests have vicariously wandered off toward sailing in the past few years. The two interests share a lot in common, the weather, the terrain, the gear and the skill set all determine the outcome.

                      And just imagine if sometime later this season if a handful of these yachties do get caught out and the worst happens. What will Jacinda have to say on TV that night, "perhaps we could have been kinder when it mattered?"

                    • RedBaronCV

                      I'm not actually discussing what the DG said – it actually was a bit clumsy.

                      However, multiple links have been provided over several discussions now that relate to the weather patterns and vulnerability or non vulnerability of the various island groups that make up FP. So we have to prove our point but you do not have to prove yours??

                      I have not seen you replying with any links that show there are no safe havens other than Australia or NZ. Just blank statements that they need to get out when there are a number of links showing that staying over in FP has been viable or recommended in previous years.

                      The only person using rich pricks has been you – although you seem very concerned about possibly remote issues of financial loss to this group. And it is trivial to put the blame onto "envy" when I for on get seasick so they are welcome to their yachting

                      In earlier discussions there was definite input from blue water yachties( or a very good imitation of them) who suggested that the risks of staying put in FP were a lot lower than a 21 day passage to NZ as intermediate stops are closed.

                      The meeting up in mid ocean was merely to point out that quarantine here will still be be necessary because we cannot absolutely say where the yachts have been recently.

                      But I do not see you wanting to read any of the links. There has just been a shifting ground of arguments being extended in a number of directions.

                    • RedLogix

                      In earlier discussions there was definite input from blue water yachties( or a very good imitation of them) who suggested that the risks of staying put in FP were a lot lower than a 21 day passage to NZ as intermediate stops are closed.

                      That's an odd assertion, because the same crews have already done a three week passage to get from typically the Galapagos (the usual jumping off point from the Eastern Pacific) to FP. Or even further if they sailed directly down from say the Canadian or American west coast. Another three week passage from FP to NZ might not be usual, but it has to be well within their capacity or they would not be in FP in the first place.

                      The meeting up in mid ocean was merely to point out that quarantine here will still be be necessary because we cannot absolutely say where the yachts have been recently.

                      You can make up all manner of silly possibilities, but again for all practical purposes the three week passage is going to be a far more secure quarantine than anything we do here on land for all the people arriving by plane every day.

                      Nor is anyone suggesting they should arrive in Opua and then hop off the boat free and clear. Everyone accepts there should still be at least another week of local secure protocol, quarantine and more testing just to be certain. But overall the total risk and costs presented by these people is negligible.

                      And finally, yes because FP is a low (but not zero) risk from a cyclone perspective, this is naturally the area where most boats have been waiting out COVID. Plus of course all the smaller South Pacific island nations downwind have been closed. But this means the relatively few safe habours in the FP group are now overcrowded and the locals are changing the rules, making it untenable for many to stay on.

                      Sure they can hop on a plane, abandon their boat to be looted and/or wrecked, and some here it seems will be quietly satisfied to see these people lose what for many will be their home and only real asset in order to protect Ardern's COVID branding just before an election.

                      I guess that calibrates some moral compasses for me.

                    • Pat

                      "That's an odd assertion, because the same crews have already done a three week passage to get from typically the Galapagos (the usual jumping off point from the Eastern Pacific) to FP. Or even further if they sailed directly down from say the Canadian or American west coast."

                      NZ closed its border on March 19….almost 28 weeks ago.

                      NZ is under no obligation to protect the assets of foreign nationals who miscalculate risk.

                    • RedLogix

                      NZ is under no obligation to protect the assets of foreign nationals who miscalculate risk.

                      If you got on a plane with a valid visa, but while you were in the air the officials of your destination country, for reasons totally outside of your control and with no warning, cancelled all visas, arrested you, convicted you as a criminal on your arrival, and then deported you at considerable cost … I think you'd have no trouble in recognising this as unreasonable. Foreign national or not.

                      Well these people are in a similar position, but in much slower motion. They embarked on a voyage over the Pacific that was perfectly legal at the outset, but now find themselves due to unprecedented circumstances they cannot control, faced with considerable uncertainty and probable loss.

                      I think it's entirely reasonable NZ, as a developed, reputable and capable nation, should sort this out.

  13. Herodotus 14

    So we as voters have a choice:

    Vote National, NZ1st or Labour and Tiwai Pt stays open "Labour says it will now extend the life of the Tiwai Point Aluminium Smelter by three to five years, if it is successful on polling day, Jacinda Ardern says."

    So if you don't want continual corporate welfare; voting for Act or The Greens will not give any dominate party a signal that giving to the corporates in lieu of those in need is QUESTIONABLE ethics !!! Be Kind to … Rio Tinto and other corporates in so much need/greed

  14. Ad 15

    So here's an interesting one.

    On the same day that Labour comes into Southland and promises that maybe they really can get a deal that keeps the aluminium smelter going, Ngai Tahu leader Sir Tipene O'Reagan proposes to the Prime Minister that it turn into a hydrogen fuel plant.

    O’Reagan said Ngai Tahu had invested heavily in Southland and wanted to continue to do so.

    “The ability to attend to the nation's emissions in a renewable clean technology which is already largely structurally in place makes extraordinarily good sense.’’

    Speaking to Stuff later in the day Ardern said she was excited by the prospects of hydrogen and said it was a very realistic possibility [for Tiwai].

    “We now have an entire hydrogen plan as a Government, we already have our first hydrogen operation in New Zealand will be opening next year.

    “We are creating a freight link for refueling freight in New Zealand, you’ve got to create a market domestically, and we are doing that.’’

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/122908649/election-2020-ngai-tahu-pushes-for-green-hydrogen-transition-at-tiwai-point

    • Andre 15.1

      Oh fuck. I had just about concluded I could actually successfully choke down the big dead rat of voting for Labour, and now they come out with this really dumb “keep shovelling cash at Rio Tinto and hydrogen” shit?

      • Ad 15.1.1

        It just looked like the worst possible kind of electioneering: a really stressed community and society gets the PM roll into town with her peeps promising *****mumblemumblemaybeplan**** and then Sir Tipene O'Reagan rolls into it with an even less formed "idea" with no particular ends, … and three weeks to go to election … nothing making sense, nothing except words spanning across the electoral sky …

        … and somehow this is supposed to solve something.

        Samuel Beckett would write a play about it.

    • weka 15.2

      can you please explain that a bit more? Hydrogen is manufactured at Tiwai and then what? How does that help exports? Is O'Reagan talking about exporting hydrogen?

      What does this mean? "We are creating a freight link for refuelling freight in New Zealand"

      • Ad 15.2.1

        It doesn't make any sense yet.

        Maybe the PM can help.

      • Andre 15.2.2

        Yeah, lets keep burning coal in Huntly so we can export electricity for cheap from Bluff!

        • weka 15.2.2.1

          yeah, but this is Labour's climate policy we're talking about 😉

          I was trying to make sense of it from their pov. Is Ardern talking about manufacturing hydrogen in Bluff, to use for the long haul road fleet in NZ? Which means freighting hydrogen from Bluff all over NZ?

          And O'Regan is talking about using Manapouri to manufacture hydrogen and sell it overseas? Or is there something else about export I am missing?

          • weka 15.2.2.1.1

            am also curious if long haul vehicles need to be replaced to run on H, or if they can be converted.

            Here's part of the govt's plan,

            https://www.greens.org.nz/low_emissions_options_for_heavy_transport_a_step_closer

          • Dennis Frank 15.2.2.1.2

            I suggest waiting until the economists give it a once-over. If they agree on a verdict, take it seriously (rare). If opinions differ, the devil will be in the planning & implementation detail, which we won't know until it takes form.

            The guts will be at the public/private interface, eh? So first we gotta discover how the PM & cabinet orchestrate it & if current owner/operator does a deal with them…

            • Draco T Bastard 15.2.2.1.2.1

              Forget the economists, I still haven't seen anything from the physicists that hydrogen is a viable fuel.

              • Andre

                Physicists are fine with it.

                It's the engineers that have to make it reliable, safe, and cost-effective that are extremely skeptical.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Pretty sure you'll find that the physicists aren't fine with it as its a net loss in energy.

                  • Andre

                    Actual physicists are aware that all energy conversion and storage involves losses. That hydrogen has more losses than most batteries, but less losses than other proposed means of conversion and storage such as compressed air, won't cause a physicist to think hydrogen for energy storage is not a viable fuel.

          • Andre 15.2.2.1.3

            I recommend not even trying to make sense of it. Because it doesn't make sense. Fuck, I'm starting to get a bit sympathetic to how Adrian Thornton and adam feel about their political choices.

            If it's for road transport, using the electricity directly by storing it in batteries onboard trucks and cars makes much more sense than dealing with turning it into hydrogen for storage.

            The idea of exporting hydrogen from Bluff is just trying to carry on BAU exporting the Manapouri energy for cheap, just as a gas instead of solid. Which will be subject to all the same vagaries of commodity markets that aluminium is, but even worse if a real international hydrogen market develops. Because countries with a lot of sunshine and vast empty land spaces will be able to produce for a lot cheaper using PV, a lot closer to where the consumers are located. Actually, even worse than for aluminium, because there's good temperature maintenance reasons for potlines to run 24/7, so hydro is a good match, but hydrogen electrolysers can easily turn on and off on a daily cycle.

            • greywarshark 15.2.2.1.3.1

              Exporting hydrogen? Grabbing at straws.

              https://sciencing.com/is-hydrogen-flammable-4968561.html
              Updated July 30, 2019 By Elliot Walsh
              Hydrogen is the first element on the periodic table with one proton and one electron. This also makes it the lightest element on the periodic table with a weight of just 1.0079 amu (atomic mass units). It's also the most abundant element in the universe.

              [deleted]

              I wouldn't trust NZrs to manage hydrogen properly, and not even foreigners brought in to run the system here. We can't be relied on to remember to keep to the rules for more than a short period of time, then we return to default "She'll be right", and transfer all assets to a blind trust, so there's no-one to turn to for reparation when there is a giant fire which puts all our efforts to gain carbon credits into the dustbin of time.

              [less unnecessary length please – weka]

    • Herodotus 15.3

      From the link it appears status quo. "Labour says it will now extend the life of the Tiwai Point Aluminium Smelter by three to five years, if it is successful on polling day, Jacinda Ardern says."

      https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/122908468/election-2020-labour-promises-to-keep-tiwai-smelter-open-longer

      "The pair promised to negotiate an extension of the Tiwai Point Aluminium Smelter, including commitment to jobs and site remediation as bottom lines."

      I wonder if the smelter also was took advantage of the wage subsidy ?

  15. Gabby 16

    Going concern or subsidy magnet?

  16. Robert Guyton 17

    Strangling National's perceived advantage in Invercargill. That's all.

  17. greywarshark 18

    From Scoop ex The Conversation. A comparison of Iceland and NZ both with sterling results of limiting Covid 19 spread. Iceland's tourist industry possibly rates even more important to them, than ours does.

    https://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL2009/S00118/covid-19-and-small-island-nations-what-we-can-learn-from-new-zealand-and-iceland.htm

    As Iceland became free of community transmission of COVID-19 in mid-May, pressure grew from the tourism industry and other stakeholders to reduce the 14-day quarantine policy for new arrivals into the country.

    In response, a controversial new border screening program was implemented on June 15. This required all incoming travellers to be tested once for COVID-19 on arrival and then urged to self-quarantine until results came back, usually within 24 hours.

    As a consequence, tourism in June and July exceeded all expectations in Iceland.

    But increasing community transmission, with several clusters arising from travellers who had tested negative on arrival prompted a stepwise tightening of the border system.

    Since August 19, all incoming travellers have had to undergo mandatory self-quarantine, during which they need to return two negative COVID-19 tests at least five days apart.

    The change to this two-test strategy proved to be a wise move, as 25 (20%) of the 126 active infections in inbound travellers were detected only by the second test.

  18. McFlock 19

    2020, huh.

    Who expected the first illegal immigrants arriving by boat that NZ1 and the Aussies warned us about would be lifestyle yachties worried about insurance coverage, not actual refugees in fear for their lives?

  19. Andre 20

    So the Sniffer-in-Chief thinks trying to insinuate someone else is using drugs is a good move? Good luck with that, Adderolf.

    https://www.politico.com/news/2020/09/27/joe-biden-trump-debate-422328

    Come to think of it, if there really is a drug that genuinely enhances performance, why isn't it a good thing for the POTUS to use it?

  20. Herodotus 21

    Funny how we point the finger at one government for their poor handling of matters and GUESS what ? the other replicate the same poor deals. Well commented on 🙊
    And I bet we will not be privy to any agreement on the basis of Commercial Sensitivity !!!

    • Tiwai Point and Rio Tinto – where a foreign multinational corporation exploited the Government’s insistence of partially privatising our power companies and was paid $30 million dollars to continue in business for a short period of time.

    National’s terrible deal making

    Rio Tinto brinkmanship

  21. observer 22

    Oh God. Another day, another National take on the trans-Tasman borders …

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/health/coronavirus/122911861/covid19-judith-collins-questions-if-kiwis-are-ready-for-transtasman-bubble

    “Judith Collins, in Nelson on Monday, said New Zealanders “may not be” ready for a trans-Tasman bubble, but she also suggested New Zealand needed to open up.

    “People need to know they are safe … People need to understand too is, do they want to stay entirely fortress New Zealand forever … I think we can keep Covid out, I think we can do a good job of it”.

    In, out, in, out, shake it all about …

  22. Pat 23

    When did Grey Power become politically affiliated?

    • mac1 23.1

      Why do you ask, Pat? What happened? I'm in Grey Power. We are non-party political but we are political. We hold political meetings and we support with our approval parties which espouse our policies. But we're not politically affiliated. The committee I'm on has Labour, Green and National members and others whose politics I don't know. We used to have one committee who described himself right of Genghis Khan. A good worker for Grey Power, though. I hope that answers your question.

  23. RedBaronCV 24

    And the ratepayers of Auckland via ATEED seem to be funding proposals to undermine the government quarantine policy on behalf of big business who should paying for their own lobbying not bludging off the ratepayers. Which bit of no you are not special are they having a problem with?

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/427066/another-private-managed-isolation-plan-to-be-proposed-after-elections

  24. greywarshark 25

    Some items from today's Stuff:

    "Today is World News Day"..to celebrate the work of professional news organisations and the positive impact they make on the communities they serve.
    and Please show your support. Put your brand behind NZ pubishers and local journalism. Contact us today advertising at npa.co.nz

    Let's do it. Slogan could be – Beyond truthieism to – get real.

    Then: Gorby: Reach out to Putin or risk new arms race. Mikhail Gorbachev, 89 …"Whatever the result of the election we need to resume a dialogue to get out of this frozen situation…He said the two countries should hold a 'second Reykjavik' – a reference to the summit with Ronald Reagan in Iceland in 1986. (This grand old and wise man needs to be listened to with a fast response to his plea. I was enthralled watching his shock at Margaret Thatcher praising 'the nuclear deterrent – mutually assured destruction' in the recent documentary, Meeting Gorbachev.)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c18V6Y3HL38 trailer

    (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wni_C86zPSU 10mins wikividi

    And – Sharks threatened by hunt for virus vaccine.
    …One of the ingredients in some versions of the Covid-19 vaccccine under development is squalene, which comes from the livers of sharks.
    …conservationists warn as many as half a million could be killed for global supplies…
    Scientists are racing to test a synthetic version, made from fermented sugar cane…

    Let's hope that we don't do more harm in looking after ourselves first and foremost.

  25. Infused 26

    Don't worry. 100% renewables will solve the problem

    [TheStandard: A moderator moved this comment to Open Mike as being off topic or irrelevant in the post it was made in. Be more careful in future.]

    [Trolling weka’s post is a sure way to a ban. Next dick move will not be moved to OM – Incognito]

  26. PsyclingLeft.Always 27

    Covid Economy Doom Update

    "New figures show Auckland's job losses have been far fewer than predicted, despite the city going into lockdown last month."

    Westpac Chief Economist was over pessimistic (ha : )

    ‘Westpac chief economist Dominic Stephens said the cost of lockdown has not been as severe as first thought.

    "I've been stunned at the resilience of the economy to lockdowns. The number of job losses has been less than expected and the impact on GDP has been at the more moderate end of estimates. What that indicates is that the cost of a lockdown is not what we thought," he said.

    "The economy has been hit hard by Covid but it's more adaptable and more able to weather the hit than people gave it credit for initially." ‘

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/427124/covid-19-auckland-job-losses-not-as-severe-as-predicted

    "Than people" ? Like Westpac? ANZ? nats? Oh lmao.: )

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