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Open mike 30/10/2010

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 30th, 2010 - 43 comments
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43 comments on “Open mike 30/10/2010”

  1. Logie97 1

    Members of Parliament travel expenses.

    So the last 5 years of any and all of the last government’s tenure was under microscopic scrutiny from the media and several members were hung drawn and quartered as a result.

    Now Lockwood is going to prevent further scrutiny…

    A certain C word comes to mind here. WTF.

    • Lazy Susan 1.1

      And just to ensure none of the heat falls on “my preshus” we get this. They really do take the p….

    • Armchair Critic 1.2

      Disgusting. Just when I was beginning to like Lockwood, too. I hope the next government have the courage to let us know how taxpayer’s money is spent.

      • ianmac 1.2.1

        There is a certain logic in Lockwood reasoning. It is apparently a setting aside of moneys from salaries for travel. It is the creepy response from Key that sickens me. “Sorry people. I tried so hard to make us transparent just like you wanted, but there you go. It is the Speaker’s fault. I did try but I think he is wrong. Love me still?” (paraphrased.)

        • Jim Nald 1.2.1.1

          Well put. The people must reject this ‘bad cop, love cop’ double act.
          I’ve said it elsewhere, I will say it here, and I will say it many times again —

          All details must be available under the Official Information Act.
          What is there to Hide? Why is it secret? What is there for MPs to be embarrassed about?
          Make Parliamentary Service subject to the OIA.
          The previous Speaker in 2007 had proposed this.
          Live up to openness and transparency.
          Which political party truly has the integrity to put up a bill to this effect?
          Now, such a bill would be deserving of urgency!

        • Another smart con job by Key and his mates.They get what they wanted but the great leader comes out of as the real hero .This lot have an incredible publicity team. To be honest its a worry.

    • Steve Withers 1.3

      I have mixed feelings on this.

      If Lockwood Smith’s explanation is true and not a re-writing of history, then I’m happy with this change of policy. I’ve known many MPs and I know how hard the vast majority work and I have seen first hand the havoc their commitment to public service (mixed with personal ambition, to be fair) can play on their family life and on their own health. I actually don’t really care if they spend what are in relative terms mere pittances on travel….and most of it is for good reasons anyway.

      What has bothered me is the media beat-ups over these relatively trivial sums of money while REAL disasters are going on. Like the Super City gutting of the democracy in Auckland. Yet the Herald is mostly silent on that as they don’t really like democracy anyway.

      I’ve followed media for almost 40 years. Commercial media outlets and the large corporations they front have a vested interest in making sure we have little respect for the people we elect to represent us. It gives the medium concerned more power and influence if they can denigrate and deride the only people accountable to us – our MPs. I have always noted I don’t get to vote for the editor of the local newspaper or the shock-jock winding people up on local radio. They are unaccountable….even if they tell lies. In the case of the newspapers, they all have a monopoly in their cities…and there is no prospect of any competition ever appearing.

      With that in mind I tend to ignore these periodic beatups over pennies. Their real aim is to separate us from our agents and representatives…..in favour of the interests of those who aren’t accountable to us at all. NZ’s foreign-owned media have been very successful in making us dislike and disrepect the people we elect to represent us. Sorry…I’m just not buying it anymore. I’ve seen first hand how the media lie outright – by commission and omission – and are effectively unaccoutable because you won’t read about it in their paper.

      Have a nice holiday, Rodney and all the rest of you. Take the whole family. I could care less.

      Now can we have some real news please? How about a story on the Auckland Council election that saw 62.5%of votes cast elect none of the 20 Councilors? How about a story on two-thirds of the new Auckland Council getting less than 30% of the vote? 81% of votes in Albany ward elected no one. This is the biggest Auckland story of the year…..and who’d ever know from reading the Herald? First Past the Post was a disaster….and who knew?

      • Draco T Bastard 1.3.1

        In the case of the newspapers, they all have a monopoly in their cities…and there is no prospect of any competition ever appearing.

        Of course not, it’s natural monopoly the same as dairies.

        Now can we have some real news please?

        Would be nice but we won’t get it unless we get public funded, not for profit, media as a well informed populace is detrimental to capitalist control.

  2. Tigger 2

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/4285073/Risk-of-others-like-Wilce-in-public-service-Key

    There’s also a risk that there are MPs who have lied about their CVs…Aaron Gilmore springs to mind Mr Key but you don’t seem to care about that, just spreading more fear and loathing around the public sector..

    • Logie97 2.1

      … and this coming from Key who cannot look a reporter straight in the eye when it comes to knowing :
      what share holdings he has,
      who tried desperately to remember exactly the dates he was with Elders and got it wrong.
      who told us just last week that he saw bigger demonstrations in the 80’s yet couldn’t remember the 81 Tour.
      who couldn’t recognise a racist slur from an interviewer.

      What did the Eagles say about lying eyes …

  3. The Chairman 3

    NZAid assistance for prospective overseas growers amounts to taxpayer boost for privately owned company?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz-government/news/article.cfm?c_id=144&objectid=10684030

  4. Bored 4

    For all those petrol head Standardistas, here’s a sign of the times, a funeral notice that will have those of us who love big blocks, lots of chrome and flasher than flash dragsters in tears..Pontiac has gone to the wall http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/30/business/30pontiac.html?_r=1&hp
    RIP the American car industry, your time has passed, it was at times great fun.

  5. prism 5

    David Suzuki on climate change this morning on Kim Hill was bound to be interesting. He sounds spot on. A book to read if you are interested in the climate change denier original genesis is The Merchants of Doubt by Naomi somebody. She has put in the yards tracing the figures behind the various public faces and words. Millions in their pockets, these background figures, and when scientists spoke against cc they had evidence then that showed the opposite, they all knew they were promulgating lies. There is money in it for them all that must be the answer.

  6. prism 6

    Was anyone listening to the end of Kim Hill’s interview with Suzuki? Just as she was finishing he said that it had been a very negative interview. She thought he meant the subject and started to reassure him. He then accused her of having been very negative to him in her questioning. It was astounding.

    She had run a good interview encouraging his opinions and eliciting the factual background also questioning him on things that we know about but are often half-informed on. She tried to cover both NZ and the world situation. He gave a global coverage and then was particularly interesting on Australias solar opportunities yet to be embraced, behind Chinas I think he said. He had forgotten that he was speaking to a NZ interviewer. But lots of informed background.
    I thought that the interview was great myself.

    What a shame that these focussed people so informed on serious issues can end up being paranoid and over-sensitive when their judgment is being tested for reliability and balance. I understand that Pilger took this attitude after one of his interviews taking about the Palestine people which he advocates for rightly and so well.. It comes across in a petty outburst that diminishes their believability for future statements.

    • Lazy Susan 6.1

      Yes I heard that and was pretty astounded at Suzuki’s reaction. Maybe he was taken aback by Kim Hill’s style, she’s fairly blunt and quickfire.I took some time to get used to her manner but now appreciate her as a very good, well informed and balanced interviewer – a very rare breed in the NZ media.

      • prism 6.1.1

        Yes she is blunt and can be quirky. Some interviewees can take themselves so seriously that they are ‘put out of countenance’.

        I look to her (and Chris Laidlaw) Nineto Noon’s top people like Kathryn Ryan to put all the points to their interviewees so I get real information to understand the matter. That’s why I haven’t ever followed Paul Holmes, Paul Henry or any radio jocks. I may be missing some good people out there but I can’t be bothered searching for them when I’ve got jewels on RadioNZ to refer to. And continue to rely on.

        anti-spam – corrupted (not!)

        • Lazy Susan 6.1.1.1

          Agreed, thank goodness for RNZ. As for Holmes and Henry I wouldn’t describe them as competent journalists or interviewers. They are so completely wrapped up in themselves they just present as opinions looking for a home. Holmes on last weeks Q&A was so anxious for viewers to know his opinion on the Hobbit dispute he didn’t listen to any answers – although, come to think of it, nothing unusual about that for Holmes and Henry.

    • Armchair Critic 6.2

      Yeah I heard that and was fairly shocked. The interview was typical Hill and very well conducted. I’d have been disappointed if she had accepted his assertions without any questioning.

    • Vicky32 6.3

      “He gave a global coverage and then was particularly interesting on Australias solar opportunities yet to be embraced, behind Chinas I think he said. He had forgotten that he was speaking to a NZ interviewer. But lots of informed background.”
      It was more than that! He banged on about “you in Australia…” and I thought if he wasn’t an American, she’d have been more forthright about reminding him that she’s in New Zealand. (Like Ryan and Lyn Freeman, she is a wee bit grovelling to American interviewees…
      I am afraid that he came across as a complete prat! (Mind, I am a ‘global warming/climate change sceptic, a denialist as the like of Suzuki call us… Offensive indeed, as it links us with Holcaust and Moon Landing deniers, which 99.7% of us are not!)
      Deb

  7. NickS 7

    Finally came across this again:
    http://www.socialistreview.org.uk/article.php?articlenumber=7813

    In a nutshell: The Lord of the Rings books are pulp that embraces anti-modernism and paternalistic authority, to which it’s only redeeming feature is the deep and detailed level of world building Tolkien did.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      I’d agree with that. I’d also say that they’re rather boring books and really can’t understand why people are so enthused about them.

      When you look carefully you’ll almost always see “paternalistic authority” and general dictatorships in works of fiction. You’ll also see the delusions of infinite growth and working “free-markets” (a few rich people controlling everything because, you know, they’re “special” and that’s why they’re rich) as well. I’ve come to the conclusion that most people writing good fiction are RWNJs and the reason why they can write good fiction is because they actually believe in the delusion.

      • Vicky32 7.1.1

        ” You’ll also see the delusions of infinite growth and working “free-markets” (a few rich people controlling everything because, you know, they’re “special” and that’s why they’re rich) as well. I’ve come to the conclusion that most people writing good fiction are RWNJs and the reason why they can write good fiction is because they actually believe in the delusion.”
        I have to rush to defend Tolkien! He was in no way a RWNJ… He was in fact, a very early greenie.. (most of his concern about industry, people being trapped in wage-slavery and the destruction of the environment and their way of life, was cut from the LotR films…
        My son hates the LotR books, and finds them boring, but then his interests lie in film, not literature.
        You might see a lot of promotion of “paternalistic authority” in Tolkien, and fair enough – it fits with the kind of fiction he was writing, but he came from a lower middle class background, and then ended up in extreme poverty when his father died and his mother had to foster JRR and his brother out, because her own family had cut her off without a penny for marrying a Catholic. (My mother’s NZ family did the same to her 50+ years later, because she married a working class immigrant!)
        My sympathies are with Tolkien. He’s a lot deeper than those who disdain him understand.
        As a linguist, I rate him especially high!
        Deb

        • NickS 7.1.1.1

          And none of that changes my opinion that Tolkien’s books are very much pure pulp. Heck, I’d rather get kids reading Ursula K. Le Guin’s Eathsea novels, Terry Pratchett’s Discworld Novels or even Ian Irvine’s The View From The Mirror Quartet. As these authors create intricate detailed worlds, on top of managing to produce strong* characters, both female and male. And then there’s the anti-modernism stuff.

          Anyhow, Maps’ says it much better than I can manage:
          http://readingthemaps.blogspot.com/2006/11/against-tolkien.html

          @Draco.

          It more depends on how closely you read the author’s work. On a causal read, Bank’s Culture Minds could be seen to be PA’s, but in both individual books and across the Culture Novels, the Minds are more or less as “human” as those the rest of the inhabitants of the Culture. Just as capable of doing dumb things when they want to, but generally they leave individuals to do as they please.

          Neal Asher is a bit different, but the nature of the AI minds that rule the Polity becomes more nuanced across the series, where we see the AI’s aren’t gods, and can be just as much complete arseholes as humans, even Earth Central. The only reason they’ve come to be in charge, and stay bin charge, is because they haven’t fucked up as much as human governments have historically.

          Though I tend to stay away from crappy writers.
          _____________
          *NB: by strong I mean nuanced characters that come across as people, rather than plot devices. Particularly female characters…

          • Vicky32 7.1.1.1.1

            I did try to read the ‘Culture’ series, as they come highly recommended, but the general air of smugness was unbearable! I felt the same about Le Guin, sadly, though I agree about Irvine.. From my experience with my son, I would never encourage kids (or even teens) to read Tolkien, (that being said, the teen girls in my class at the school I attended in the late 60s/early 70s devoured Tolkien and fought each other for the copies in the school and public libraries – but we were the girls who would have been called in later decades by the Americanism “geeks and nerds”. Shallow teens should stick to Twilight!)

  8. Fisiani 8

    In a parellell universe Trevor Mallard is castigating the government for calling Warner Brothers bluff and then losing The Hobbit (like he did with the IRB Rugby Word Cup) after they did not want to face the MEAA fiasco they have already experienced in Australia.
    He is decrying them for losing a 800n million dollar movie and a 3 billion industry. He is announcing that 3000 jobs have directly been lost and another 5,000 indirectly.
    In a parallell universe Trevor Mallard becomes PM in 2011.
    Thank God in the real world we have a great negotiator, a great politician, a great pragmatist and a great man in , soon to be Sir, John Key to lead NZ out of the morass for the next 13 years.

    • Armchair Critic 8.1

      …John Key to lead NZ out of the morass for the next 13 years
      In the real world he hasn’t held one job for more than five years, and most of his jobs have been for two to three years. What makes you think this well established pattern will suddenly change now he is PM?
      It seems much more likely that he will either:
      (a) retire mid-term if National form the government after 2011, or
      (b) retire immediately after the 2011 election if National can not form a government.

      • ianmac 8.1.1

        Nope. He must get a knighthood at all costs. He will have to do more than buy off Warners but Sir John will be goal No 3 so he will stick around even if he uses the Earthquake Act to delay the next election till maybe 2015 or so.

        • Tigger 8.1.1.1

          Fisi, Key’s going to be PM for 13 years but soon to be sir? So he’ll give himself a knighthood while he’s still PM…? Bwhahahahaha – I mean travel perks are one thing but granting yourself a title, that’s a whole new level of troughing.

    • Joe Bloggs 8.2

      I thought this was great:
      Trevor Mallard says Gordon Campbell has a great post on the Hobbit:
      http://blog.labour.org.nz/index.php/2010/10/28/gordon-campbell-on-the-hobbit-deal/

      Following the link I happen to read in the midst of Campbell’s post:
      Incidentally, it has been incredible to hear the same Trevor Mallard who flung money at the America’s Cup and caved into the IRB’s commercial demands for draconian legislation to protect the Rugby World Cup, now accusing John Key of caving into Warners. The hypocrisy is breath-taking.
      http://gordoncampbell.scoop.co.nz/2010/10/28/gordon-campbell-on-the-hobbit-finale/#more-1002

      Frakkin’ hilarious – Yes Trev it is a great post – hits one particular nail right on its head!

      • Colonial Viper 8.2.1

        Bloggs – Campbell makes a point, which also means that you must agree with his final conclusion:

        Instead, the structure of the settlement deal for The Hobbit means that the same negative mindset – and the same undue reliance on Jackson – will be perpetuated. Rather than raise New Zealand’s 15% level of production subsidies to 20 % – and thus protect our ability to compete for projects – the government has concocted a de facto 20% deal and reserved it exclusively for The Hobbit. This will virtually ensure that next time round, major film projects that are not umbilically tied to Jackson will be lost elsewhere. What Key has done is to increase our dependence on Peter Jackson. It is no way to build an industry, or run an economy.

        Key really has no idea what he is doing – unless his plan was to create legislation specifically to suit one Sir Peter Jackson.

  9. Fisiani 10

    Wanna bet which way the next lots of polls goes? The people will fall for the Labour/Green bullshit and get labour up to 40% and Phil up to 25% . Really??? John Key has already earned a knighthood.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      Love how the Right admires the trappings of aristocracy and money. What is it, a demonstration of (upper class) societal legitimacy?

      • Steve Withers 10.1.1

        Colonial Viper: The *need* for titles and status is a manifestation of insecurity in my view. It’s the same insecurity that underlies much ‘conservative’ thinking….especially around property rights (afraid of losing it). This is part of the reason why fear is such a visceral thing for many conservatives. Combine that fear with a strong sense of one self and what I see as a lower level of regard for others. In a word: selfish. Not evil….just engrossed in their own view of things and less likely to want to listen to or know much about any other.

        In contrast, I’ve found people who aren’t afraid of much of anything and who aren’t in need of status or titles tend to also be more generous and giving and sharing. They like to listen. They consider the views of others and show respect for all. The outcome of that sort of behaviour, to me, is these people tend to not be conservatives. Conservatives look at them and call them “liberals”…which I interpret as being more open to others and free of thought, which can be a source of insecurity for people who don’t do that much. Full circle.

        Of course these are gross generalisations and will certainly be inaccurate and unfair in many specific cases. But as a model or rule of thumb for initial assessment they can be very useful.

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1

          Yep your model explains a heck of a lot of the behaviours and responses you get from people in real life.

        • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.2

          Of course these are gross generalisations and will certainly be inaccurate and unfair in many specific cases. ut as a model or rule of thumb for initial assessment they can be very useful.

          And backed by decades of research.

    • Irascible 10.2

      With Key and his NACT govt forgetting that their combined party name contained the word “Nation” and, therefore dropping it from their reference, we will need to refer to the party as AlACT. The Al standing for “Absent Leader”.
      Ironically it can refer to both Hawaiian holidaying Key and Fiancee globetrotter Hide as well as representing the sellout policies of the party.

      • M 10.2.1

        No different to Bush who was always vacationing somewhere in case someone pushed a mike under his nose and expected a coherent thought. Coherency was left to Uncle Cheney – suppose the uncle role is fulfilled by Blinglish here.

        Key’s undisguised lust for a title is embarrassing but then he parked his dignity at the door a long time ago.

  10. outofbed 11

    A prediction… If Mat does well in Mana .We can look forward to seeing a new leftwing political party emerge in the new year led by Sue Bradford. You heard it here first

  11. Pascal's bookie 12

    An account of an encounter with a certain viscount at an Oxford Union Debate:

    http://blogs.ft.com/rachmanblog/2010/10/a-night-at-the-oxford-union/

    The viscount is an interesting character. He once worked in the policy unit at Number Ten under Lady Thatcher and is now deputy leader of the anti-European UK Independence Party. More recently he has become famous as a vociferous climate-change sceptic and for fighting a Quixotic campaign to gain entrance into the House of Lords. I was seated opposite him at the pre-debate dinner, and initially I found his conversation rather unsettling: a blizzard of statistics and anecdotes on everything from climate to Europe, all delivered with supreme confidence and a slight gleam in the eye.

    I began to think that Viscount Monckton might be a formidable opponent during the debate. Then he told me that he has discovered a new drug that is a complete cure for two-thirds of known diseases – and that he expects it to go into clinical trials soon. I asked him whether his miracle cure was chiefly effective against viruses or bacterial diseases? “Both”, he said, “and prions”. At this point I felt a little more relaxed about the forthcoming debate.

    As they say, heh. Indeedy.

    • prism 12.1

      Sounds like one of PG Wodehouse’s characters. He loved to write about well-rounded eccentric men with aristocratic connections. He probably would have introduced Lord Monckton with a side (snide) comment that he used to be called Monkey at his public school.

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    Maybe you’ve seen the graph that says those countries where everyone wears a mask are the ones that have managed to keep Covid-19 under control? The first thing to say about that claim is that those countries also did lots of other things, too – they acted fast, with intense ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    3 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #14
    Story of the Week... Editorial of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... North Atlantic's capacity to absorb CO2 overestimated, study suggests Research into ocean’s plankton likely to lead to ...
    3 days ago
  • The Americans are trying to kill us all again
    The Treaty on Open Skies is one of the most effective mechanisms for preventing war curently in force. By letting countries make surveillance flights over each others' territory, it eliminates fears that they are secretly preparing for war. So naturally, the US is planning to withdraw from it: The Trump ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 11
    . . April 5: Day eleven of living in lock-down… My one day of rest for the week, and an opportunity to mow my lawns – which I’d been delaying for about three weeks. (On the plus side, the damp micro-climate in my back yard yielded three lovely fresh mushrooms ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Now we know what the rules are
    As the lockdown has gone on, disquiet about what the rules were and the police's enforcement of them has grown. On Friday, Police admitted that they were abusing routine traffic stops to effectively set up illegal checkpoints, and on Saturday Stuff revealed internal police advice saying that they actually needed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 2: Green et al (2019)
    Paul Connett is putting all his eggs in one basket. He says “you only have to read four studies” to find community after fluoridation harmful. Image credit: Fluoride Action Network newsletter. For part 1 of this series see Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018). Paul Connett, ...
    4 days ago
  • Hard News: Splore Listening Lounge 2020: the road to a “yes” vote
    As far as anyone can say, New Zeaand still has a general election scheduled for September 19 this year. The election will be accompanied by two referenda, one of which will ask voters:Do you support the proposed Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill?The official campaign period for the cannabis referendum begins ...
    4 days ago
  • Obituary for The New Zealand Listener (1939-2020)
    The vast majority of tributes to the Listener hearken back to its glory days, with little reflection on the magazine as it was at its end.I wrote for it, for half the Listener’s life; I have known personally all the editors except the first (mythical) three. From 1978 to 2014 ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • Universal income – a challenge to capitalism or a crutch?
    As the world economy slides rapidly towards deep recession there are growing calls for a Universal Benefit coming from some leftists and rightists. Now Finance Minister Grant Robertson is saying it is on the table.  This article by a French party Workers Struggle provides analysis of various forms of universal ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
    This is the advice from the very top of the anti-fluoride movement – Paul Connett, director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN). Don’t worry about reading  up on all the scientific information “You only have ...
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 10
    . . April 4: Day 10 of living in lock-down… I wake up to a fine Saturday morning which normally would be like an early Christmas. But it’s Day 10 of Level 4 Lock Down. What  will my fellow New Zealanders be doing on a day like this – staying ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Redline reaching out to more writers & readers
    Some time during the night we went over the 850,000 views mark. We might have had our millionth view by the end of this year – certainly by early next year. Most of the people involved in Redline spent years and years producing various small left-wing papers and selling them ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Keir Starmer elected
    Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to ...
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: Michael Baker and the Big House
    One of the key voices in this extraordinary time in which we live is that of University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker. Philip Matthews did an an excellent job this weekend of capturing the way he became the man for this moment in a profile for The Press.But one ...
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    5 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    7 days ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    7 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    7 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    1 week ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    1 week ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    1 week ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    1 week ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    1 week ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago

  • Decisions made on urgent turf maintenance
    The Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson has announced that urgent maintenance of turf and care for plants in non-plantation nurseries will soon be able to go ahead under Level 4 restrictions. “The Government has agreed that urgent upkeep and maintenance of biological assets will be able to go ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Acknowledging an extraordinary te reo champion
    E tangi ana a Taranaki iwi, e tangi ana te ao Māori, otirā e tangi ana te motu. Mōu katoa ngā roimata e riringi whānui ana, mōu katoa ngā mihi.   E te kaikōkiri i te reo Māori, e Te Huirangi, takoto mai. Takoto mai me te mōhio ko ngā ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Prime Minister’s remarks halfway through Alert Level 4 lockdown
    Today is day 15 of Alert Level 4 lockdown. And at the halfway mark I have no hesitation in saying, that what New Zealanders have done over the last two weeks is huge. In the face of the greatest threat to human health we have seen in over a century, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Licenses, WoFs and regos extended under lockdown
    All driver licences, WoFs, CoFs, and some vehicle certifications, that expired on or after 1 January 2020 will be valid for up to six months from 10 April 2020, Transport Minister Phil Twyford has announced. “People shouldn’t have to worry about getting fined for having an expired document if driving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Inquiry report into EQC released
    The Government has today released the report from the Public Inquiry into the Earthquake Commission chaired by Dame Silvia Cartwright.  Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission Grant Robertson says the Government wants to learn from people’s experiences following the Canterbury earthquakes and other recent natural disasters. “Dame Silvia’s report documents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • More time for health workers and elderly to get flu vaccine
    The Government has extended by two weeks till April 27 the amount of time priority groups, such as health workers and those aged over 65, have to get their flu vaccine before it is made available to the wider public. This year’s vaccination campaign is a key component of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Communities step up to help New Zealanders stay connected and fed during lockdown
    Communities stepping up to help New Zealanders stay at home to break the transmission of COVID-19 and save lives have received Government support, said Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. “Delivering groceries for the elderly who can’t shop online, providing data packs for low income families to keep them connected, and being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • 120 COVID-19 testing centres now operating
    Across New Zealand 120 sites are taking samples to be tested for COVID-19.   68 community based assessment centres (CBACs) have been established to take samples from people with COVID-19 symptoms. Alongside this, 52 other centres including designated general practices, swabbing centres, and mobile clinics are now testing people for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Covid19: Government moving quickly to roll out learning from home
    The Ministry of Education is working with partners to develop a package of options so that students can learn at home when Term 2 begins on 15 April, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Supports are also being prepared for households with children under five, to help parents and whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Making learning from home accessible to Māori learners and whānau
    Māori Television to begin educational te reo programmes Ki te Ao Mārama – a new online learning space Thousands of hard copy learning packs ready for distribution Helpdesk and advice service for kōhanga, kura and wharekura Television, the internet and hard copy learning packs are some of the ways whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand to provide assistance to Vanuatu following Tropical Cyclone Harold
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced an initial package of support to help the people and the Government of Vanuatu respond to the impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. “Our Pacific neighbours have been hit by a Category 5 Cyclone at the same time as dealing with the economic impacts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government supports air services to offshore islands
    The Government has stepped in to support vital air links to our offshore islands, the Chatham Islands, Great Barrier Island and Motiti Island, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. “As part of our $600 million support package to minimise the impacts of COVID-19 on the aviation sector, the Government has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
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