Open mike 31/07/2020

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, July 31st, 2020 - 117 comments
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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 …

117 comments on “Open mike 31/07/2020 ”

  1. ScottGN 1

    Heather Roy on Checkpoint yesterday was trotting out the centre right’s line that Labour won’t/can’t win a majority because no party ever does in NZ, except for the 1951 election which was held in extraordinary circumstances, dominated by the waterfront dispute. She was somehow conveniently managing to ignore the circumstances around this election which make 1951 look like a walk in the park.

    • Peter 1.1

      I've heard that notion about something 'not going to happen because it's not happened before.'

      It's a ridiculous argument. Nothing ever happens until it happens for the first time.

    • Ad 1.2

      We are in at least a big a crisis as 1951.

      A very fair chance of a Labour-only Cabinet.

      With comfortable side agreements if necessary.

      • swordfish 1.2.1

        Might be an idea for Ardern to downplay the prospect of governing alone.

        At the same point in the run up to the 2002 General Election, the Clark-led Labour Party was sitting on precisely the same rating (53%) in the Colmar Brunton … only to fall 12 points to 41% by Election Day.

        NZES analysis suggests that Clark's initial decision to campaign vigorously for a one-Party Govt (on the basis of stability & her personal popularity) alienated voters (particularly on the Left) … seen as arrogant, dictatorial & a reversion to old-fashioned FPP-thinking. (Campaign Mini-scandals Corngate & Paintergate simply reinforced this mood). A hefty chunk of intending Labour voters subsequently swung elsewhere … first & foremost into non-voting. Luckily for the party, the Nats' plunge was even steeper.

        Whenever NZES polls on attitudes to the Electoral System, it always finds substantial majority support for MMP & Coalition Govt among Left voters & majority support for FPP & single-Party Govt among Nat supporters.

        Hence, while many of the 400k newly-acquired former Nats might be more comfortable with a sole Labour Govt … to hold on to a sizeable segment of core Labour voters, Ardern may just need to downplay any sense of arrogance or entitlement around the issue.

        • greywarshark

          Interesting info swordfish. I hope the upper echelons listen – wouldn't want problems with the seals when the spaceship gets into the rarefied air, no D-ring or O-ring malfunctions.

    • Craig H 1.3

      1951 was the last time it happened, but not the only time (1938 saw Labour with its highest ever result, 55%).

  2. Robert Guyton 2

    Another blow to the National Party "…a perkier state than most expected”…."

    "As New Zealand closed its borders and prepared to go into level 4 lockdown, predictions of economic doom flew.

    But four months on, economists say the situation is better than expected and many of those predictions have already been revised."

    Mike Jones, an economist at ASB, said the economy had “bounced out of lockdown in a perkier state than most expected”.

    • Sabine 2.1

      maybe the economist have calculated this in their forecast, while the banker is just happy for the government to pay the wages for nigh on everyone in the country.

      The latest figures from the Ministry of Social Development show that $1.9b of that has been paid under the extension to the scheme, which came into effect in early June.

      More than 1.7 million jobs are being supported by the scheme, which comes to an end in September.

      Nearly 10,500 recipients of the wage subsidy have paid the money back, totalling $323.6m.

      once that wage subsidy is running out there will be a clearer picture on how bad it is going to be. Until then the economy is currently fully prepped on the taxpayers dime, and i am sure this will cause any guys working for a bank to rejoice, often and loudly.

    • gsays 2.2

      Too true, Robert.

      House prices and the 'correction' that was going to occur. Here in the provinces, the sales are going gang-busters. Selling in under a week and above asking price.

      Perhaps it is time to put the horoscopes in the news, they have as much relevance as these economists. Haruspication too. (Thanks Bill, I still have a smile when these financial forecasters pontificating).

      • Kiwijoker 2.2.1

        Remember Bagrie was predicting petroleum hitting $3 per litre after the Saudi refinery attack!

      • greywarshark 2.2.2

        Well there is another interesting word for my specimen board.

    • Ad 2.3

      We're in a dead cat bounce.

    • woodart 2.4

      thank you for highlighting this, dancing on the head of a pin, effort by economists. in my travels around middle NZ, people are VERY busy, and there is plenty of money being spent.I have long thought that most economists are fairly useless, and the last few months havent changed that opinion.none of their predictions of economic doom seem to have taken into account the very low interest rates currently, a factor in many people choosing to spend ,rather than letting money sit in term deposit ,getting basically nothing in interest. along with the low interest rates, we also had a big rise in benefits and the allowing of small building without permits. this last point probably flies past most on here, and definitley past 99.9% of economists, but go to your local demolition yard, or hardware supplier and ask them about building activity. all very busy. nothing like the economic standstill predicted by some, and hoped for by others.

      • Sacha 2.4.1

        Home renovations and cosmetic surgery are apparently popular replacements for overseas travel spending by those with enough money. However there are only so many kitchen and nose makeovers anyone can fit into a year, so we'll see where things land by 2021.

        • Sabine

          The wage subsidy is keeping us afloat here in Rotorua. Most businesses have already cut hours, closing early, not opening 7 days anymore etc. Some people have taking cuts to wages to ensure that all get to keep their jobs in one business – IT business. I can think of a few more towns like that in the North Island and the South Island.

          Once that subsidy runs out and people are either still in a job or unemployed we will get to taste the real state of the economy.

          • Sacha

            Yes, Xmas will be grim.

          • Sabine

            this might make for interesting reading

            Benefit Recipients

            On 26 June 2020, there were 353,440 people receiving main benefit, an increase of 61,470 since the same week last year.

            Over the same period, the number of people receiving Jobseeker Support Work Ready benefits hasrisen 48,640 to 125,965 (up 65 per cent)since the same week last year, accounƟng for the majority of the net increase.

            The number of recipients increased rapidly from late March and throughout April, but has stabilized since May. A further 10,580 people were receiving the COVID-19 Income Relief Payment, which is not included in the Main Benefit total.


            that last number of people receiving the Covid – 19 Income Relief Payment aka the Covid Unemployment benefit will raise. And the 10580 people that are receiving it now will loose it within the next 8 odd weeks as it was only for a period of 12 weeks.
            the comment of number of recipients of benefits having stabilized since may coincides wit the announcement of the extension of the wage subsidy for another 8 weeks of certain criteria is met.

        • Tricledrown

          There is unlimited house Reno's plus building there's still a massive shortage of housing and 100's of 1,000's of cold damp leaky building syndrome poorly constructed houses that need fixing.

          • Sacha

            How can renovations be "unlimited"?

            • Tricledrown

              By your imagination with cheap money around because of low interest people are renovating extending etc.House prices are going up while bank interest rates are at record lows.

              • Sacha

                I never mentioned borrowing. Only people with enough money not to worry about their immediate future will be spending, though the same group would be granted bank loans I guess.

            • greywarshark

              Do you really want to know this Sacha? Or are just putting a spoke in?

            • Gabby

              Cos the sky's the limit, buddy.

            • weka

              Use low quality materials that need replacing every few years?

            • Adam Ash

              Sacha, you obviously haven’t tried renovating an old Kiwi house!!!

          • Sabine

            well lets hope that someone forces the owners of these leaky houses to finally fix them. 🙂

            and then that will save the economy! Yeah, right Tui.

    • Herodotus 2.5

      And comments such has your don't help those who are still working under reduced hours, are full time yet still being paid 90,80 even 60%, are utilising annual leave but still expecting to achieve a 40 hour output, and still have the normal outgoings. And living with the fear of job loss should any resistance be given to these changes of working conditions.

      Whilst there are some happy to point to the the economic data "telling" us all is good . Guess What IT ISN'T for many.

      Like so many statistics that are used to support particular points of view "things are/are not getting better" People suffer, lost in the numbers.

      • greywarshark 2.5.1

        House renovations are a good way to spend money. And some might think cosmetic surgery a good investment as did Paul Bennett – she has been well paid for years and no doubt made good contacts for future employment. They have noticed the spectacular changes in her profile and want one of those too.

  3. Ad 3

    My reckons is this time Labour scoop most of the expat vote as well.

  4. Tricledrown 4

    Collins cashing in Kiwisaver dumb idea criticized by business man on RNZ as highly risky with 58% of Small business failing in the first year.similar odds as a pokie machine.

    National desperately flailing around policy on the hoof in the same mode as the party complete disarray.

    • Sabine 4.1

      Yes. Lets only give money to really big businesses that are to big to fail.

      'Wat the man from the bank is not saying is that they really like to keep all that saved money in THEIR bank accounts, as otherwise some bank may go bust if they had to pay it all out.

      But heck its just he people who saved into their Kiwi Saver Account that we can't entrust with THEIR OWN money, lest the small business taht they would like to create (cause sure beats unemployment) may fail. Never mind the 48% of small businesses that don't fail. Also lets not mention the fact that often the reason small businesses fail are bad lending when they started up with too high repayment rates a. and b. high leases, high compliance costs etc etc etc.

      Go figure.

  5. Treetop 5

    Act's polling success is due to the NZ First vote going to Act. Last election non Labour and non Green voters who were not that supportive of National mainly voted for NZ First to be a coalition partner for National. These voters are now punishing NZ First.

    The Maori Party was punished by their voters favouring Labour.

  6. Rosemary McDonald 6

    Again, Natrad has GPs bemoaning the fact that patients are refusing to be tested for Covid 19 despite having symptoms.

    After an incident involving a close relative the other week I have been checking the MOH 'Covid 19 testing' webpage and up until the latest update on the 29th July the MOH message was that just having some of the symptoms was not necessarily grounds to be tested. Even now,

    the criteria for testing is quite proscribed. Not exactly encouraging folks to be tested.

    The incident involving a close family member involved headache, cough, sore throat and generally feeling like shit. Was advised to do the unthinkable(to our whanau) and go to the doctor and get tested…this person works in education and had very real concerns about possible contagion… Phonecalls to Healthline etc, and appointment made at large city medical centre, all the while describing symptoms and requesting a Covid test, just to be safe. Given a light mask at arrival (did phone before entering the building but was told to come on in) and was seen by the duty doctor. Who proceeded to discount the possibility of Covid19 and told the patient to attend the largely unused public testing centre 2 kms away if they really wanted a test. Issued a medical certificate for work but did not suggest self isolation until a negative test result was returned.

    This was two weeks ago. Close family member did have the test….the brain scrape…and it returned a negative result.

    • Adrian 6.1

      So the doctor was right.

      • Rosemary McDonald 6.1.1

        So the doctor was right.

        Amazing, no? That the GP could tell without a test? That GP should be utilized to save $$$ on the actual Test.

        So who should be tested? According to the MOH website….some or all of those symptoms and/or recent overseas travel or any possible contact with a recent traveler from overseas.

        • Sabine

          no the doctor took an educated guess – three month no community transmission – and based on that felt certain she may not have the disease.

          He was not right. But he was proven right once a test was taken. Until then he was guessing to the detriment of your close relatives health.

        • Draco T Bastard

          That GP should be utilized to save $$$ on the actual Test.

          And what if someone then dies because the doctor failed to correctly diagnose the illness? How many $$$ will save?

    • Treetop 6.2

      Your relative is doing the right thing by having a test, they are looking after the community by being tested.

      I can be critical of health professionals and I am in this case because the duty doctor declined a test when they could not exclude the person being infected until tested.

    • mac1 6.3

      Why are people refusing the test? is it because it is described by some as a 'brain scrape'? That it might hurt a little?

      I had a Covid-19 test. A moment's discomfort.

      As a male I had several DREs for prostate cancer. Again, discomfort but no bloody reason not to have the digital examination.

      Indeed, it is not bloody helpful to discourage people with the language that we use. Rather, we should be supporting the people to have tests as it could be life saving for them, and in the case of Covid-19, life saving for others.

      Personal pain, or discomfort, even if real and difficult, is not a reason to put others at risk, especially our seniors, of a particularly unpleasant death.

      I have, as a cancer survivor, given talks on the need for testing. It saved my life. Eleven years later, I can still say that. I told a group of farmers that they'd get a vet in to check their livestock if they were concerned, so why not man up, accept s small discomfort and do themselves and their loved ones a favour by regular testing?

      Most will, but those who frivolously make jokes or use off-putting language do not help the uncertain to do the correct thing.

      Do people even refuse vaccination jabs because of the way it is described?

      In my primary school days, the school dentist was known as 'the murder house'. At least we kids did know what an exaggeration that was, as the death toll was pretty low, even then with slow speed, grinding drills and the smell of burning meths in the air.

      • Rosemary McDonald 6.3.1

        but those who frivolously make jokes or use off-putting language do not help the uncertain to do the correct thing.

        Mary Poppins is a fictional character who also proposes sugar coating as a means to ensure the little ones comply with Doctors Orders.

        But in the real world surely honesty is the best policy?

        Tell folks the swab up the nostril does feel like a sample of brain tissue is being harvested…but that the discomfort is very transitory and it is for the greater good.

        Treat us like responsible grown ups and perhaps we'll act like it?

        • Kay

          @Rosemary, I had a test during L4. Wasn't keen on the idea at all because I'd heard several first-hand stories of 'pain' with the nose swab as opposed to brief discomfort. But given the circumstance and timing of symptoms that wasn't going to put me off.

          Apart from gagging badly from the throat swabs, I didn't even feel the nose one. perhaps the nurse had it down to a fine art, or perhaps it's a matter of pain level tolerance, or perhaps it really is expecting the worse because of the off-putting language? I have a cold now that's getting worse, I know it's just a cold but if at some point another test is offered I'll take it (been travelling in long distance buses recently).

          I do agree that with ANY medical procedure informed consent is first and foremost. Explain what's going to happen, and that some people (not everyone because it's NOT everyone) experience xyz. And be able to answer any follow-up questions in plain English to reassure.

          • Rosemary McDonald

            I suspect it was the test taker's enthusiasm that gave the impression the swab was going to emerge above the whanau member's eyebrow. As you will know…some phlebotomists can take a blood sample with barely a bit of pressure. Others prod and poke around with a blunt needle until that bruise nicely extends from elbow-crook to wrist.crying

            Hope your cold gets better…we've had various seasonal lurgees which we've hit with lots of vitamin C flushed down with lots of fluids. Just like Nana did.wink

        • mac1

          To describe my experience aa a 'brain scrape' was a degree or two of magnitude too much. Of course we should be supportive and honest, but not to the extent of putting people off. Was your use of the 'brain scrape' meant to be gratuitously jocular, or be supportive and honest? Did it need to be said? To me that was un-useful information that also did not sit with my experience.

          • Rosemary McDonald

            …use of the 'brain scrape' meant to be gratuitously jocular, or be supportive and honest?

            Of course it was jocular…christ on a raft! … do you not think we could all do with a wee giggle now and again?

            "Gratuitous"? Surely that is entirely subjective? One man's meat etc?

            While the minutiae of language used is relevant, how about we examine the messaging being used by various players, especially the MOH and the GP's association, to try and ascertain just why folks are not being tested?

    • mac1 7.1

      That will raise a few eyebrows, he thought…..

      • Andre 7.1.1

        It may be just that one of the rabid rats wrestling inside his skull just farted, or it may be laying the groundwork for trying to delegitimise the election results.

    • Andre 7.2

      schrodinger's douchebag: noun

      An individual, generally male, who says offensive things, either sexist, racist, or otherwise bigoted, and decides based on the reaction of those around them whether or not they were kidding.

      • mac1 7.2.1

        Negatives reactions generally dismissed as, "Can't youse guys take a joke?" or "Get a life!" or "It was a joke, geddit?"or "Gedda sensa huma." Yeah, met those guys quite often.

        Maybe that's what Bob Jones said the Left had no sense of humour?

      • mac1 7.2.2

        Negatives reactions generally dismissed as, "Can't youse guys take a joke?" or "Get a life!" or "It was a joke, geddit?"or "Gedda sensa huma." Yeah, met those guys quite often.

        Maybe that's what Bob Jones meant when he said the Left had no sense of humour?

      • AB 7.2.3

        There's a sub-category who dig themselves in deeper by attempting to reference objective criteria as proof that they were kidding – such as eyebrow movements.

    • JohnSelway 7.3

      It was a joke eh

      Boy that Trump has a wonderful sense of humour

  7. Devo 8

    I know this is a Labour leaning blog, but I hope a lot of progressive voters look at where the Greens are sitting right now and decide to give them their party vote.

    Labour is doing amazingly well this term and rightly deserves the support they are getting, but that won't last forever. Currently their at-risk voters are people who normally lean center right; think your investment bankers, professional landlords, and tax lawyers etc. This support won't last forever, it won't take much for them to go back to their natural home of National.

    If as a result of Labour's stratospheric polling, the Greens fall below the 5% threshold, it will make it very hard for them to get back into parliament in the future. A future where Labour again will need coalition partners, and may find itself in the position National found itself in 2017.

    So hopefully some progressive voters consider giving their party vote to the greens to ensure we keep the amazing talent on their list such as Marama, James, Chloe, and Eugenie. All amazing MPs who would have great contributions to make to future parliaments

    • left_forward 8.1

      Tautoko Devo.

    • Gabby 8.2

      I hope a lot of actoids, gnats and nzfisters consider voting green. Those would be votes worth purloining.

      • bwaghorn 8.2.1

        The anti green memes are gathering pace on my fb feed .

        Especially the loathing of Eugenie Sage so I cant see them getting any from the modern you suggest.

        Maybe you had you eyebrow up when you wrote that .

        • RedBaronCV

          I've always assumed that you are part of the rural farming community – perhaps wrongly. But do you think these facebook memes are going pretty much to the rural sector?

          • bwaghorn

            Yip probably is coming from mostly the thar hunting and high country farming lot at the moment. I'm to far removed to know If Sage is out to kill off to many thar and drive farmers out of the high country.

            But that's were the anger is coming from.

            Personally It doesn't bother me if they cull the thar ,and I've always hated tenure review.
            (I’m a shepherd but think a bit different to most of my peers from what I see)

            • Gabby

              Those big hearted sons of the soil would be deepl hurt if they can't pick up public land for a song and sell the subdivisions for bags o money. They'd have to make placards about pretty communists, the poor little weaselfaced shitters.

    • Bearded Git 8.3

      Well said Devo….and with the RMA about to be dumped we desperately need Greens in parliament and on the select committee that writes the legislation that replaces it.

    • weka 8.4

      Completely agree.

      It's fine to bring this up here, lots of green supporters, including those that voted Labour last time 😉

    • calltoaccount 8.5

      Exactly right. My vote’s natural home is Labour, plus I feel I owe a huge thanks for the Gov’s Covid effort. But, strategically and for the environment, it would be a disaster for the Greens to go below 5%. No question. So party vote Green for me, electorate vote Banks Peninsula Labour.

    • Spot on Devo. I intend to give my electorate vote to Labour, but my party vote to the Greens. In the hope they'll turn Labour 'left.'

      • solkta 8.6.1

        Party Vote Green for a labour Labour government.

        • Tiger Mountain

          Yep. It’s party vote Green for me, Labour electorate.

          • mary_a

            Yes, same here in Cromwell (the invisible 30000 state houses Nat MP Jacqui Dean's electorate). Labour electorate vote and Green party vote for me.

            • Roy cartland

              Me too.

              Of course that "tax is love" stuff was going to be mocked, what a dumb decision. They should get a bit rowdy and say something like, 'we won't tax you – well tax *them* (the billionaires)'.

              But the released policy is actually pretty good, and necessary.

  8. JohnSelway 9

    Herman Cain, prominent COVID denier and anti-mask wearer dies of Covid.

    While I don't wish to speak ill of the dead… fucking idiot – this is what happens

  9. 6. Yes, Not all medical people are "Concerned" But any patient can ask for a second opinion. That may be why the Dr. offered the testing station, which should have been offered by the health line imo.
    Rosemary, this didn’t link for some reason.

  10. Sacha 11

    Not allowed a CGT – how about taxing recipients of inherited unearned wealth instead?

    With New Zealand’s average national house price now over $700,000, the heirs of home-owning boomers (as well as people born before 1945 whose significant wealth is often overlooked) will receive a currently untaxed bonanza.

    Ignoring this unprecedented transfer of wealth from people who no longer need it to people who haven’t earned it would be absurd. But equitable tax policy must first overcome political timidity and rhetoric.

    Taxing a person’s wealth when they no longer need it, provided a reasonable exemption is made to support dependants, has been usual since Roman times. In the modern era, inter-generational wealth was seen as eminently taxable, too. Indeed, progressive tax rates were applied to estate taxes before they were first used for income taxes.

    The arguments against estate taxes are well rehearsed – usually accompanied by emotive references to “death taxes”. But, in the long term, the current ideological opposition to taxing inter-generational wealth transfers may prove to be an anomaly.

    • mac1 11.1

      We do have a form of means testing already in NZ where we recognise that ownership of assets can be a reason to reduce or even deny a subsidy. I think of rates rebates and state assistance into residential care as examples.

      Tax on wealth is the basis of Muslim countries’ practice where taxation is actually predicated on certain asset holdings.

      NZ also examines transfer of wealth while the giver is still alive in circumstances such as assistance into residential care.

      The asset and income-from-assets thresholds for the Residential Care Subsidy have been increased as of July 1. For eligibility, go to the Work and Income website at

      So, the concept is not unknown and could easily be investigated as a means of funding social expenditure for all as a taxation measure.

  11. Reality 12

    Jacinda has been named the world's most eloquent leader! She is certainly making her mark here and round the world.

    • Just Is 12.1

      Yes, and without even trying.

      Just doing her job in a way that nearly every Kiwi agrees with.

  12. Gosman 13


    All the money spent on the report only to discover that the SAS raid was carried out in a lawful and professional manner and the only real issue was how the military dealt with the allegations after the event. Nice use of taxpayers money there.

    • mac1 13.1

      Gosman, in the report very recent in RNZ news, did the Minister of Defence of the time also get mentioned, and in what way?

      Your comment makes it look like only the military personnel were criticised.

      In the earlier report that I have cited above, the Minister said d he did not have information as to whether, and if so how many, civilians died.

      That is surely one good reason for investigation.

      It's also good to have the military accountable.

      It's also good to have the incident investigated for the reputation of the NZ military, and to have it seemingly exonerated.

      On another but related issue of reports and wastage of time and money, have you noted that the National Party has still not publicly released its report into its own culture and practice around bullying?

      Since they are being held accountable by the electors in a few weeks time………

    • Tricledrown 13.2

      The military is a law unto itself command and Control no dissenters,That's the ethos of the military that's why discipline is the ultimate weapon break down individuality breakdown any dissention.Your job is to do and die without any questions. Whistleblowers are not treated kindly look at how the NZDF treated a Women soldier who was sexually harassed and abused by a senior ranking man.

      The Defence force continued to pursue her for court cost's until the PM stepped in an put an end to the mysoginist hierarchy debt pursuit ,another round of bullying on top of the humiliation.

    • Brigid 13.4

      And speaking of money

      "…The Inquiry process was highly unequal. NZDF and other government agencies spent millions of dollars of public money trying to deny any wrongdoing, while the authors and public were not allowed to analyse and contest the agencies’ secret submissions and evidence." – Nicky Hager

      Someone, (you Gosman?) should notify the taxpayers union of this egregious waste of your taxes.

    • Gabby 13.5

      Worth finding out that they're a pack of liars and a certain ex minister apparently has brain damage.

  13. weka 14

    Fascists, they accuse others of what they are about to do. It's part of the mind fuck that keeps people anxious, agitated and confused. When 45 says the election in November will be the most corrupt in US history, he's stating intention. But if he does crazy shit now, back and forth on his position, blames others and so on, it creates an atmosphere whereby they can monkey wrench the process to suit themselves.

    Take to the streets US people, while you still can.

  14. Leighton 15

    Scaremongering headline currently on "'Get tested immediately': Spectre of community transmission in Queenstown"

    The story relates to the South Korean traveller who tested positive in South Korea after travelling from Auckland via a 12 hour transit at Changi Airport in Singapore (where the virus is rife). Turns out that he was in Queenstown BETWEEN JULY 1 AND JULY 4 (i.e. yes, a month ago) He left the country over two weeks later on 21 July and tested positive a few days after that once he was back home. NZME trying to whip South Islanders into a frenzy over that?

      • Sabine 15.1.1

        first line from your link.

        Anyone who was in Queenstown from July 1 to 4 and has since developed Covid-19 symptoms should get tested immediately, health authorities say.

        don't see that as fearmongering but rather a sensible thing. It seems like there is a certain amount of people in this country that want a Covid outbreak. Maybe they just feel left out in the general mess the world is in.

        • Sacha

          'Spectre' may have been the problem.

          • Leighton

            Exactly Sacha. Yes we do want to get our community testing numbers up, and anyone anywhere in the country who develops Covid-19 symptoms should be able to access a test to achieve that.

            But in reality there's no "spectre" of anything. All of his housemates in Auckland (where he lived up to the time he departed the country) have tested negative. There was almost three weeks (longer than the recognised incubation period) between him leaving Queenstown and departing the country. He travelled on two international flights and transited through Singapore where Covid is rife. Doesn't take a genius to work out what almost certainly happened, but the inability to prove a negative is more than enough fodder for NZME to go spooking the horses.

            • Tricledrown

              Your claim Covid is rife in Singapore is incorrect, it is migrant dormitories which have been isolated so not much chance of picking it up in the general population it may pay to read the Singapore Covid situation before creating unnecessary hysteria .

              Fact please not hysterical fiction .

              • Leighton

                Mostly in the migrant dorms yes, but community cases are being picked up in Singapore on a daily basis . Further, Changi Airport is a major international hub, so he would have potentially come into contact with travellers from all over the world while in transit.

                Balance this against the possibility of him having picked Covid up from an unknown source in New Zealand over a month ago and seeded it in Queenstown while he was infectious, even though there hasn't been a single detected community case in the whole country in the last three months despite test numbers in the hundreds of thousands over that time. It's not impossible (not much is), but surely no more than a remote/trivial prospect.

                By all means, out of an abundance of caution clean the public places he visited (although my understanding is that the virus has been proven to live on hard surfaces for up to 72 hours so if that's correct the risk of picking it up from surfaces he touched has long expired). But banner headlines trumping the "spectre of community transmission in Queenstown" is what is hysterical here.

  15. Janet 16

    “New Zealand's estimated almost $50 billion tax deficit could be paid by rich people keen to move here, multi-millionaire Australian investor Mark Carnegie says. who as of late last year is a resident in NZ,

    He said NZ had an improving position in the market for rich people.

    I would be taxing the rich foreigners. But I understand that maybe New Zealand says no.”

    Paraphrased from

    No Mr Carnegie, you obviously have no sense of New Zealand’s history. We are not open to nor need the rich of the world to come and rape, pillage and buy up our land to live the indulgent life of a rich man, now that New Zealand is a developed country.

    • RedBaronCV 16.1

      In a way he might be onto something. I'm absolutely not interested in giving any form of citizenship or residency or voting rights to the rich.

      But hey we could raffle/auction a very limited number of places that gave a minimal right to live here for say 1-2 years, no voting no donating to any political party or charity or advertising,no buying any assets or houses or anything or having a payroll over a certain amount – so very limited in country spending and a top dollar payment for any use of social assets, schools etc. So no attempts whatsoever to change the local environment heads need to be kept right down

      No bids under a billion dollars to start.

    • francesca 16.2

      He's bought a 6 mill property in the Sth Island with a covenanted area of bush, rare powelliphanta snails and coastal forest

      I hope he appreciates what he's bought.The previous owner had lived there for a long time and the covenant was a labour of love.

      It seems he will commute between here and Aus.

      We're getting a bit saturated with billionaires .

  16. Sacha 17

    Bless. Tourism industry still reckons everything will be the same as before.

    • RedBaronCV 17.1

      If I had a subscription to this employer group I'd cancel it pronto. This lot should get the dumb business leader of the week award.

      And really how dare they stuff around with young people's futures and suggest they wrack up debt for the benefit of a no job industry

  17. Just Is 19

    Here's another artivle on the recent polls.

    This one includes comments from Peter Dunne.

    I find it interesting that commentators have failed to acknowledge that the Rise of Act is at the disadvantage of National, and/or possibly NZF, they are not new voters coming from nowhere.

    If National does increase its support, Act will most likely be the party to see support shed away from them.

    Dunne really has no idea, he probably thinks support for Labour will fall the closer to election we get

    There would have to a seismic shift in support that could only occur from a significant issue, which is possible, but highly unlikely given the last few weeks of "significant issues".

    I think we may have already had more than a fair share of "Significant Issues" to deal with and every Political Party is conscious of this and will be very cautious leading upto the election.

  18. @Wayne

    I'm listening to you on RNZ Checkpoint, and may I say JUST how adult and Victor Mature you handled things.

    Truly!!!! I feel your pain and sincerely hope it doesn't affect the credibility you've built up over the years going forward, and that the MSM will continue to engage you with your commentary and words of wisdom on any incisive currant fears rent-a-voice slot in future.

    I just can't recall, or even remember what caused me to fail to recall about something as serious a matter I should have been intimately involved with. May I say I feel the pain as you search your soul and you wrestle with the hows and whys of how all this happened. Truly, the load must be horrendous!
    Perhaps you could discuss it all with Chelle if the pain becomes too unbearable.

  19. Ha ha! Wayne Mapp on Checkpoint suffering from the same disease Key so often suffered from: "I can't remember!"

    Edit: snap – OnceWasTim and Sacha

    • OnceWasTim 23.1

      I'm (me me me) so utterly devastated by this sorry LITTLE episode I've had to pour myself a stiff G & T, and I'm going to have to seek solace in the bosom of Mrs OnceWasTim.

      War as you know @Tony, is a dreadful, dreadful thing – especially the ones we have no business in.

      Really, I don't know how I'M going to recover from all this! I was thinking maybe I should have Mrs OnceWasTim run up something on the Elna and select something from online Walmart as a token of our sorrow for the family.

      Such a devastating thing to have happened and to have affected the Honour of OUR defence force in such a way.

  20. Anne 24

    You would be amazed Sacha what terrible memories these high flyers have when it comes to recalling the past – even the immediate past.

    I remember a personal experience while working on an RNZAF base in the late 1980s when my boss arranged for a stoutish bloke in a blue satin fancy dress (motor cycle outfit) to visit him with what proved to be a recording device. (I witnessed the piece of drama through a slightly open door.) Five minutes after the stout man left, the regional boss turned up and I was called into the office and confronted by them. The aim of the exercise had been to implicate myself – on tape – because they were convinced I was a Labour Govt. spy. I never did find out who I was reporting to… whether it was David Lange himself or one of his ministers. I would be deeply disappointed if it was only a minion MP. crying

    When I reported the matter to their masters in Wellington, neither of them had any recollection of the incident. I was made to apologise to them.

    This is a true story. I kid you not.

    • OnceWasTim 24.1

      Doesn't surprise me in the slightest @ Anne. Did any of them happen to be promoted sideways doing the dirty work in the spook service?

      • Anne 24.1.1

        I eventually demanded an interview with the General Manager of the Govt. agency I worked for (now an SOE) and he sent a senior official to interview me. A few days after that interview the Regional Manager was sacked. Further down the track – after I left the Public Service – the base boss was also sacked.

        A complicated and intriguing story involving a little bit of everything.

    • Sacha 24.2

      I would have been tempted to make up an elaborate story – but I guess the Urewera raids show that ridiculous exaggeration is not necessarily enough protection when they're determined to get you.

  21. Not wishing to sound patronising @Anne, just view them as the same smelly farts floating around in a time and space continuum as any other egotistically-driven specimens – such as rival gangs intent on duking it out in whatever they perceive as their next battle to conquer.

    The only difference is they have the apparatus of state behind them and usually bigger egos and sense of self-importance.

    Just as pathetic. Avoid any and all of them if and when they come begging for a shoulder to cry on – even if you have the misfortune to be related to any of them.

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    As the centre-right has (finally!) been subjected to media interrogation, the polls are indicating that some voters may be starting to have second thoughts about the wisdom of giving National and ACT the power to govern alone. That’s why yesterday’s Newshub/Reid Research poll had the National/ACT combo dropping to 60 ...
    6 days ago
  • Tuesday’s Chorus: RBNZ set to rain on National's victory parade
    ANZ has increased its forecast for house inflation later this year on signs of growing momentum in the market ahead of the election. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: National has campaigned against the Labour Government’s record on inflation and mortgage rates, but there’s now a growing chance the Reserve ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • After a Pittsburgh coal processing plant closed, ER visits plummeted
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Katie Myers. This story was originally published by Grist and is part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story. Pittsburgh, in its founding, was blessed and cursed with two abundant natural resources: free-flowing rivers and a nearby coal seam. ...
    7 days ago
  • September-23 AT Board Meeting
    Today the AT board meet again and once again I’ve taken a look at what’s on the agenda to find the most interesting items. Closed Agenda Interestingly when I first looked at the agendas this paper was there but at the time of writing this post it had been ...
    7 days ago
  • Electorate Watch: West Coast-Tasman
    Continuing my series on interesting electorates, today it’s West Coast-Tasman.A long thin electorate running down the northern half of the west coast of the South Island. Think sand flies, beautiful landscapes, lots of rain, Pike River, alternative lifestylers, whitebaiting, and the spiritual home of the Labour Party. A brief word ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Big money brings Winston back
    National leader Christopher Luxon yesterday morning conceded it and last night’s Newshub poll confirmed it; Winston Peters and NZ First are not only back but highly likely to be part of the next government. It is a remarkable comeback for a party that was tossed out of Parliament in ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    7 days ago
  • 20 days until Election Day, 7 until early voting begins… but what changes will we really see here?
    As this blogger, alongside many others, has already posited in another forum: we all know the National Party’s “budget” (meaning this concept of even adding up numbers properly is doing a lot of heavy, heavy lifting right now) is utter and complete bunk (read hung, drawn and quartered and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • A night out
    Everyone was asking, Are you nervous? and my response was various forms of God, yes.I've written more speeches than I can count; not much surprises me when the speaker gets to their feet and the room goes quiet.But a play? Never.YOU CAME! THANK YOU! Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago

  • New Zealand resumes peacekeeping force leadership
    New Zealand will again contribute to the leadership of the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt, with a senior New Zealand Defence Force officer returning as Interim Force Commander. Defence Minister Andrew Little and Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced the deployment of New Zealand ...
    4 hours ago
  • New national direction provides clarity for development and the environment
    The Government has taken an important step in implementing the new resource management system, by issuing a draft National Planning Framework (NPF) document under the new legislation, Environment Minister David Parker said today. “The NPF consolidates existing national direction, bringing together around 20 existing instruments including policy statements, standards, and ...
    7 hours ago
  • Government shows further commitment to pay equity for healthcare workers
    The Government welcomes the proposed pay equity settlement that will see significant pay increases for around 18,000 Te Whatu Ora Allied, Scientific, and Technical employees, if accepted said Health Minister Ayesha Verrall. The proposal reached between Te Whatu Ora, the New Zealand Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi ...
    8 hours ago
  • 100 new public EV chargers to be added to national network
    The public EV charging network has received a significant boost with government co-funding announced today for over 100 EV chargers – with over 200 charging ports altogether – across New Zealand, and many planned to be up and running on key holiday routes by Christmas this year. Minister of Energy ...
    1 day ago
  • Safeguarding Tuvalu language and identity
    Tuvalu is in the spotlight this week as communities across New Zealand celebrate Vaiaso o te Gagana Tuvalu – Tuvalu Language Week. “The Government has a proven record of supporting Pacific communities and ensuring more of our languages are spoken, heard and celebrated,” Pacific Peoples Minister Barbara Edmonds said. “Many ...
    1 day ago
  • New community-level energy projects to support more than 800 Māori households
    Seven more innovative community-scale energy projects will receive government funding through the Māori and Public Housing Renewable Energy Fund to bring more affordable, locally generated clean energy to more than 800 Māori households, Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods says. “We’ve already funded 42 small-scale clean energy projects that ...
    4 days ago
  • Huge boost to Te Tai Tokerau flood resilience
    The Government has approved new funding that will boost resilience and greatly reduce the risk of major flood damage across Te Tai Tokerau. Significant weather events this year caused severe flooding and damage across the region. The $8.9m will be used to provide some of the smaller communities and maraes ...
    5 days ago
  • Napier’s largest public housing development comes with solar
    The largest public housing development in Napier for many years has been recently completed and has the added benefit of innovative solar technology, thanks to Government programmes, says Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods. The 24 warm, dry homes are in Seddon Crescent, Marewa and Megan Woods says the whanau living ...
    5 days ago
  • Te Whānau a Apanui and the Crown initial Deed of Settlement I Kua waitohua e Te Whānau a Apanui me...
    Māori: Kua waitohua e Te Whānau a Apanui me te Karauna te Whakaaetanga Whakataunga Kua waitohua e Te Whānau a Apanui me te Karauna i tētahi Whakaaetanga Whakataunga hei whakamihi i ō rātou tāhuhu kerēme Tiriti o Waitangi. E tekau mā rua ngā hapū o roto mai o Te Whānau ...
    6 days ago
  • Plan for 3,000 more public homes by 2025 – regions set to benefit
    Regions around the country will get significant boosts of public housing in the next two years, as outlined in the latest public housing plan update, released by the Housing Minister, Dr Megan Woods. “We’re delivering the most public homes each year since the Nash government of the 1950s with one ...
    1 week ago
  • Immigration settings updates
    Judicial warrant process for out-of-hours compliance visits 2023/24 Recognised Seasonal Employer cap increased by 500 Additional roles for Construction and Infrastructure Sector Agreement More roles added to Green List Three-month extension for onshore Recovery Visa holders The Government has confirmed a number of updates to immigration settings as part of ...
    1 week ago
  • Poroporoaki: Tā Patrick (Patu) Wahanga Hohepa
    Tangi ngunguru ana ngā tai ki te wahapū o Hokianga Whakapau Karakia. Tārehu ana ngā pae maunga ki Te Puna o te Ao Marama. Korihi tangi ana ngā manu, kua hinga he kauri nui ki te Wao Nui o Tāne. He Toa. He Pou. He Ahorangi. E papaki tū ana ...
    1 week ago
  • Renewable energy fund to support community resilience
    40 solar energy systems on community buildings in regions affected by Cyclone Gabrielle and other severe weather events Virtual capability-building hub to support community organisations get projects off the ground Boost for community-level renewable energy projects across the country At least 40 community buildings used to support the emergency response ...
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 funding returned to Government
    The lifting of COVID-19 isolation and mask mandates in August has resulted in a return of almost $50m in savings and recovered contingencies, Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. Following the revocation of mandates and isolation, specialised COVID-19 telehealth and alternative isolation accommodation are among the operational elements ...
    1 week ago
  • Appointment of District Court Judge
    Susie Houghton of Auckland has been appointed as a new District Court Judge, to serve on the Family Court, Attorney-General David Parker said today.  Judge Houghton has acted as a lawyer for child for more than 20 years. She has acted on matters relating to the Hague Convention, an international ...
    1 week ago
  • Government invests further in Central Hawke’s Bay resilience
    The Government has today confirmed $2.5 million to fund a replace and upgrade a stopbank to protect the Waipawa Drinking Water Treatment Plant. “As a result of Cyclone Gabrielle, the original stopbank protecting the Waipawa Drinking Water Treatment Plant was destroyed. The plant was operational within 6 weeks of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt boost for Hawke’s Bay cyclone waste clean-up
    Another $2.1 million to boost capacity to deal with waste left in Cyclone Gabrielle’s wake. Funds for Hastings District Council, Phoenix Contracting and Hog Fuel NZ to increase local waste-processing infrastructure. The Government is beefing up Hawke’s Bay’s Cyclone Gabrielle clean-up capacity with more support dealing with the massive amount ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Taupō Supercars revs up with Government support
    The future of Supercars events in New Zealand has been secured with new Government support. The Government is getting engines started through the Major Events Fund, a special fund to support high profile events in New Zealand that provide long-term economic, social and cultural benefits. “The Repco Supercars Championship is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • There is no recession in NZ, economy grows nearly 1 percent in June quarter
    The economy has turned a corner with confirmation today New Zealand never was in recession and stronger than expected growth in the June quarter, Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. “The New Zealand economy is doing better than expected,” Grant Robertson said. “It’s continuing to grow, with the latest figures showing ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Highest legal protection for New Zealand’s largest freshwater springs
    The Government has accepted the Environment Court’s recommendation to give special legal protection to New Zealand’s largest freshwater springs, Te Waikoropupū Springs (also known as Pupū Springs), Environment Minister David Parker announced today.   “Te Waikoropupū Springs, near Takaka in Golden Bay, have the second clearest water in New Zealand after ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More support for victims of migrant exploitation
    Temporary package of funding for accommodation and essential living support for victims of migrant exploitation Exploited migrant workers able to apply for a further Migrant Exploitation Protection Visa (MEPV), giving people more time to find a job Free job search assistance to get people back into work Use of 90-day ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Strong export boost as NZ economy turns corner
    An export boost is supporting New Zealand’s economy to grow, adding to signs that the economy has turned a corner and is on a stronger footing as we rebuild from Cyclone Gabrielle and lock in the benefits of multiple new trade deals, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. “The economy is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Funding approved for flood resilience work in Te Karaka
    The Government has approved $15 million to raise about 200 homes at risk of future flooding. More than half of this is expected to be spent in the Tairāwhiti settlement of Te Karaka, lifting about 100 homes there. “Te Karaka was badly hit during Cyclone Gabrielle when the Waipāoa River ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Further business support for cyclone-affected regions
    The Government is helping businesses recover from Cyclone Gabrielle and attract more people back into their regions. “Cyclone Gabrielle has caused considerable damage across North Island regions with impacts continuing to be felt by businesses and communities,” Economic Development Minister Barbara Edmonds said. “Building on our earlier business support, this ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New maintenance facility at Burnham Military Camp underway
    Defence Minister Andrew Little has turned the first sod to start construction of a new Maintenance Support Facility (MSF) at Burnham Military Camp today. “This new state-of-art facility replaces Second World War-era buildings and will enable our Defence Force to better maintain and repair equipment,” Andrew Little said. “This Government ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Foreign Minister to attend United Nations General Assembly
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta will represent New Zealand at the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York this week, before visiting Washington DC for further Pacific focussed meetings. Nanaia Mahuta will be in New York from Wednesday 20 September, and will participate in UNGA leaders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Midwives’ pay equity offer reached
    Around 1,700 Te Whatu Ora employed midwives and maternity care assistants will soon vote on a proposed pay equity settlement agreed by Te Whatu Ora, the Midwifery Employee Representation and Advisory Service (MERAS) and New Zealand Nurses Association (NZNO), Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. “Addressing historical pay ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand provides support to Morocco
    Aotearoa New Zealand will provide humanitarian support to those affected by last week’s earthquake in Morocco, Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. “We are making a contribution of $1 million to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) to help meet humanitarian needs,” Nanaia Mahuta said. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Government invests in West Coast’s roading resilience
    The Government is investing over $22 million across 18 projects to improve the resilience of roads in the West Coast that have been affected by recent extreme weather, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed today.  A dedicated Transport Resilience Fund has been established for early preventative works to protect the state ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Government invests in Greymouth’s future
    The Government has today confirmed a $2 million grant towards the regeneration of Greymouth’s CBD with construction of a new two-level commercial and public facility. “It will include a visitor facility centred around a new library. Additionally, it will include retail outlets on the ground floor, and both outdoor and ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Nanaia Mahuta to attend PIF Foreign Ministers’ Meeting
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta will attend the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, in Suva, Fiji alongside New Zealand’s regional counterparts. “Aotearoa New Zealand is deeply committed to working with our pacific whanau to strengthen our cooperation, and share ways to combat the challenges facing the Blue Pacific Continent,” ...
    3 weeks ago

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