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Open mike 31/03/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 31st, 2016 - 68 comments
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68 comments on “Open mike 31/03/2016”

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      I’m sure this contract was completely above board, for example.

      Meanwhile, a month earlier… That must have been embarrassing!

      I wonder what induced Bridges to award the contract despite the bribery scandal. Bovine contentment?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.1

        Ah, I have my contract dates mixed up – the Leighton Holdings job had already been awarded. Totes legit then.

      • maui 1.1.2

        I’m so thankful that NZ is touted as one of the least corrupt countries in the world. In fact I’m pretty sure Nat MP Paul Foster-Bell said this on Waatea 5th Estate just the other night.

        Hearing those words encourages me when I think I hear a large company that uses bribery to get oil contracts overseas also won the $1 billion Transmission Gully project, and that our Government will be paying them undisclosed millions in “maintenance” costs for the next 25 years once the road is built. Fills me with hope.

    • saveNZ 1.2

      Good link in particular

      “After the US-led coalition won the second gulf war, it went to guard the oil ministry – leaving the Baghdad museum undefended to be looted of its treasures.

      But they did not save the oil industry from thieves. The Unaoil files reveal that Western companies, in concert with Iraq’s new elite, themselves began a sustained campaign of looting.”

    • Jenny Kirk 1.3

      Undoubtedly !
      ( this is in answer to OAB at1. )

    • Jenny 1.4

      One Anonymous Bloke, when you are casting about your unsubstantiated nasturtiums that our politicians are in the pay of the oil industry…, Why do you stop at Simon Bridges?

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11164241

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10822510

  1. Tautoko Mangō Mata 2

    Corruption on a massive scale.

    A massive leak of confidential documents has for the first time exposed the true extent of corruption within the oil industry, implicating dozens of leading companies, bureaucrats and politicians in a sophisticated global web of bribery and graft.

    After a six-month investigation across two continents, Fairfax Media and The Huffington Post can reveal that billions of dollars of government contracts were awarded as the direct result of bribes paid on behalf of firms including British icon Rolls-Royce, US giant Halliburton, Australia’s Leighton Holdings and Korean heavyweights Samsung and Hyundai.

    The investigation centres on a Monaco company called Unaoil, run by the jet-setting Ahsani clan. Following a coded ad in a French newspaper, a series of clandestine meetings and midnight phone calls led to our reporters obtaining hundreds of thousands of the Ahsanis’ leaked emails and documents.
    The leaked files reveal that some people in these firms believed they were hiring a genuine lobbyist, and others who knew or suspected they were funding bribery simply turned a blind eye.

    http://www.theage.com.au/interactive/2016/the-bribe-factory/day-1/the-company-that-bribed-the-world.html

    Also see http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/world/78400473/unaoil-bribery-scandal-codenames-subterfuge-and-the-global-money-trail

    • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1

      I hope they’ll be releasing the emails.

    • saveNZ 2.2

      +1 Tautoko Mangō Mata

      • Tautoko Mangō Mata 2.3.1

        This was written in July last year but it is interesting seeing the Trump quotes.

        • “I gave to many people, before this, before two months ago, I was a businessman. I give to everybody. When they call, I give. And do you know what? When I need something from them two years later, three years later, I call them, they are there for me. And that’s a broken system.” — Donald Trump in 2015.

        • “[T]his is what’s wrong. [Donald Trump] buys and sells politicians of all stripes … he’s used to buying politicians.” — Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., in 2015.

        “Now [the United States is] just an oligarchy, with unlimited political bribery being the essence of getting the nominations for president or to elect the president. And the same thing applies to governors and U.S. senators and congress members. … So now we’ve just seen a complete subversion of our political system as a payoff to major contributors …” — Jimmy Carter, former president, in 2015. (Thanks to Sam Sacks.)

        https://theintercept.com/2015/07/30/politicians-admitting-obvious-fact-money-affects-vote/

      • One Anonymous Bloke 2.3.2

        The problem here is that the crims have a ready-made apparatus just waiting for them. It’s called The National Party.

  2. Tautoko Mangō Mata 3

    Reichert: Ways & Means GOP Form Five Working Groups On TPP Problems
    House Ways & Means Committee Republicans have formed five working groups addressing their objections to the Trans-Pacific Partnership that cover biologic medicines, financial services data localization, tobacco, agricultural market access and “elevated labor obligations,” trade subcommittee Chairman Dave Reichert (R-WA) said in an interview this week.
    http://insidetrade.com/

    Here come the changes! Here’s how they will do it. Time to wake up, NZ!

    HOW THE US FORCED AUSTRALIA TO REWRITE ASPECTS OF ITS COPYRIGHT LAW DURING CERTIFICATION OF COMPLIANCE WITH THE AUSFTA

    http://tppnocertification.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/AUSFTA-certification-memo-Feb-2015.pdf

    30 March 2016
    <blockquoteKey Holds Door Open To TPP Changes, But Only After Deal Is Implemented
    New Zealand Prime Minister John Key on Wednesday (March 30) signaled that his country is not open to changing the terms of the Trans-Pacific Partnership before it enters into force but that tweaks to the deal could occur as additional countries join in the future. He also warned that failure to bring the TPP into force would bolster the Chinese-led effort to conclude the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
    http://insidetrade.com/

    • pat 3.1

      Exactly as Lori Wallach noted…..funny that.

    • left for dead 3.2

      Good morning TMM, I think you need too put the > at the end of blockquote as well.

      • Pasupial 3.2.1

        & “</blockquote" at the end of the quote too (I find it quickest to type that at the end, then copy paste it to the top and delete the slash).

        I do appreciate TMM's comments, they often contain information and links that I haven't come across myself.

  3. ianmac 4

    Reported on RNZ that Key in USA has told them that they must not build a wall to keep Mexico out. (That’s sorted then.)
    And that the USA must go ahead with TPPA because he said it is good. (He should know as he is a very very wise man. Sorted then.)

  4. Murray Simmonds 5

    Yep, and the audience would have had John-Oliver-inspired images of Key , the South Pacific banana republic, ponytail-pulling, and flag-changing floating through their heads as Key spoke.

    That’s why they laughed at his comments.

  5. Sabine 6

    And this first article shows again, why all of our hair pulling and gosh who will think of the future in regards to climate change literally is just hogwash to appease the masses.
    We are still knocking down houses – in a city with a housing crisis – to build a fucking carpark, so people can drive their arses to a park and go for a run. Never mind the perfectly good houses that will get knocked down. No its important that the office drones of Auckland get to exercises their bony behinds in a park that they need to drive too. Cause walking there would be an abomination. OR something.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/78338710/tenants-lose-homes-in-monte-cecilia-park-extension

    “Everyone I’ve spoken to is really concerned they won’t find a new place.

    “Everything in my price range is run down or full of mould. A lot of people can’t afford to pay $1000 a week for a four-bedroom house.” quote end.

    If the Governemnt does not want to be in the business of housing, could it get rid of Nick Smith mInister of housing or something like this. We could save the wages paid to this looser, he could try his hand in the free market and no one would be worse off….well maybe the company that would hire the looser. But hey the market would fix that one too.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/78384251/protests-over-transfer-of-2800-east-auckland-state-houses-heat-up

    Rolling protests against the transfer of 2800 Auckland state houses to a redevelopment company are set to come to a head on Thursday.

    The Tamaki Housing Group has been protesting outside the Tamaki Regeneration Company (TRC) offices in the suburb of Glen Innes since Tuesday.

    The group is against the Government’s controversial decision to transfer the ownership and management of 2800 states houses to the TRC on April 1.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/78326933/southland-houses-more-than-three-times-cheaper-than-auckland

    Quote: ” A stable population, strong job market and a high quality of living also made Southland an ideal market to buy a house in, Ellis said.”

    Well if there is such a strong job market and high quality of living why can’t we send some of the new migrants down to live in Invercargill? Surely there must be plenty of ‘business opportunities’ that the savvy overseas investment migrant can invest in in order to receive his residence permit? ‘T’would be a win for all, Auckland would have a few thousand migrants less flocking into Akl, and Invercargill would get a bit of ‘business investors money’ flowing in.

  6. Gangnam Style 7

    Just heard the news on The Sound, hardly indepth or searching (but great music!) but they were reporting the surge in unemployed youth, they were doing a weird angle about them joining the army or something, but rockstar economy has casualties.

  7. saveNZ 8

    This is a sad story.

    Shandra Woworuntu: My life as a sex-trafficking victim

    http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-35846207

  8. Lanthanide 9

    Very much worth reading.

    National and their “budgets” are playing us all for a bunch of suckers, like the audience of a magic show: http://www.interest.co.nz/opinion/80818/cam-preston-accuses-government-managing-countrys-finances-according-magicians-theory

  9. ianmac 10

    Is it possible that Catherine Delahunty is in the firing line for her having embarrassed Dr Smith by asking very good questions about clean water QT yesterday, that he could not/would not answer?

    • ianmac 10.1

      Sorry. Mixed Sue Moroney with Catherine.
      Still, Catherine did embarrass the Nicked Smith over clean water questions.

  10. joe90 11

    Just another irrational basic income supporter…

    View post on imgur.com

  11. swordfish 12

    Glory Days

    Just been researching some polls from 2002

    Example: Herald-DigiPoll (July 2002)
    Labour Down 1 point to 51%
    National Down 1 point to 25%
    ACT Up 1 point to 6%

    They don’t make ’em like that anymore.

    • McFlock 12.1

      examination of the transition from then to, say, 2008 might be interesting

      • Tom 12.1.1

        Yes it would, I think National had the funds, organization to recover. Plus they got a leader JK with no political baggage. Remember too that they nearly won in 2005. Is Labour as ready for a recovery, i am not so sure the next election being just 18 months away.

  12. adam 13

    How low can trump supporters go?

    It seems quite low…

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      The girl had punched in the face a grey haired Trump supporter in his 60s moments before that.

      • joe90 13.1.1

        He sexually assaulted her.

        In a statement, the police department said: “A 15 year [old] girl from Janesville was peppered sprayed in the crowd by a non-law enforcement person… A male in the (crowd) groped the 15 year [old] girl, when she pushed him away; another person in the (crowd) sprayed her. We are currently looking for two suspects, one for the sexual assault and one for the pepper spray”.

        http://www.cbsnews.com/news/15-year-old-pepper-sprayed-outside-donald-trump-rally/

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          It’s an alleged sexual assault. There are plenty of witnesses right there, men and women, so let’s see what the police can gather in terms of statements.

          • McFlock 13.1.1.1.1

            No, it’s a reported sexual assault.

            The “grey haired Trump supporter in his 60s” is the alleged offender.

            • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1.1.1

              As I said, there are dozens of witnesses right there, men and women, and film footage too, so lets see what the police can make of it.

              • McFlock

                You’d be amazed at how easy it is to miss surreptitious actions in a crowd. That’s why pickpockets and gropers love crowds.

                But the difference between saying a sexual assault against a 15yo was “alleged” vs the assault being “reported” and the suspect being “alleged” is pretty fundamental.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Looked to me like that older guy was there at the Trump event with someone who may have been his wife or female partner.

                  • McFlock

                    dude, seriously?

                    Even if you could read the matrix and determine their relationship status from that clip, why would that matter? Is knowing a woman some forcefield against sexually assaulting girls?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Why would it matter? It would matter in court, in front of a jury, of course.

                    • McFlock

                      lol

                      now you know what the jury will be thinking when faced with testimony you know will be presented from the woman you know to be his partner to defend him from the allegation of a 15yo girl that you know will go to jury trial rather than being plead out after you know charges will be filed….

                  • Muttonbird

                    Quite the victim blamer, aren’t you?

      • weka 13.1.2

        “The girl had punched in the face a grey haired Trump supporter in his 60s moments before that.”

        @CV, citation?

        All I found was this,

        “A male in the [crowd] groped the 15-year-old] girl, when she pushed him away; another person in the [crowd] sprayed her. We are currently looking for two suspects, one for the sexual assault and one for the pepper spray.”

        http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/live/2016/mar/30/us-election-2016-live-clinton-sanders-trump-cruz-kasich-campaign

        Or this, maybe you can point out where the punch is,

        http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/donald-trump/12207176/Teenager-groped-and-pepper-sprayed-at-Wisconsin-Donald-Trump-rally.html

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.2.1

          She’s making a fist with her hand which is visible in the video footage and then at some point she lashes out with it. From the camera angle I can’t see if her fist connected with anything more than thin air, but she throws a punch outwards alright.

          • weka 13.1.2.1.1

            Timestamp? I can’t see it. Is the grey-haired guy you refer to the one clearly visible on the left?

          • McFlock 13.1.2.1.2

            lol

            And mr redhat is there to save the day, pepper spray at the ready in his hand just in case a 15 year old girl gets upset at being groped. What a hero.

            Of course, using pepper spray in a crowded area to address a small issue within the hyped-up crowd can cause lethal stampedes.

            • adam 13.1.2.1.2.1

              It’s the mr redhat, who I made the original low comment about.

              The waiting, and then slinking back to hide back into the crowd, what a low life.

              I forgot that that Pepper spray could have broader consequences, good call McFlock.

    • joe90 13.2

      As the girl is being led away following the assault someone in the crowd yells goddamn communist nigger lover! get out of here!

      Candace Smith Verified account
      ‏@CandaceSmith_

      EXCLUSIVE vid shows teen get pepper sprayed after shoving protester, called a bitch & “n****r lover” at Trump rally

      edit:

      Candace Smith Verified account
      ‏@CandaceSmith_

      NEW: Janesville Police release photo of the man they think pepper sprayed teen yesterday outside of Trump rally.

      https://twitter.com/CandaceSmith_/status/715218331318534145/photo/1

    • joe90 13.3

      The incident.

      • adam 13.3.1

        That a full shot of the low life at the end who did the pepper spray.

        And he’s smiling like cheshire cat, sickening.

        • Colonial Viper 13.3.1.1

          At 27 seconds she lashes out with her right hand/fist at the older guys face, unknown whether she actually connects or not. This was after she pushed forward through the crowd towards him for several seconds, against people trying to hold her back.

          As for the guy who pepper sprayed her, yep, he’s a bit of a sadistic sociopath.

          • McFlock 13.3.1.1.1

            At 27 seconds she lashes out with her right hand/fist at the older guys face, unknown whether she actually connects or not. This was after she pushed forward through the crowd towards him for several seconds, against people trying to hold her back.

            …while she repeatedly accused him of touching her breast.
            And yet none of the drumpfoids thought to get his name, or detain him for the police to sort it out.

            I hope she did connect. At least he’d have to explain how he got a scratch to his face – good way to identify him later.

            • Colonial Viper 13.3.1.1.1.1

              perhaps the witnesses – male and female – standing closest to the apparent sexual assault victim didn’t think the old man had done anything. So didn’t feel the need to record his name or apprehend him.

              I hope she did connect. At least he’d have to explain how he got a scratch to his face – good way to identify him later.

              Her violence wasn’t really necessary or productive. And it clearly wasn’t self defence, from the videos.

              She might end up charged herself.

  13. McFlock 14

    On more cheerful news regarding a topic that caused much controversy here at TS a year or two back: WHO have declared an end to the West-African ebole-related Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

    “Exponential rate of growth” or not, we didn’t end up with a Walking Dead scenario, which is nice.

  14. adam 15

    “The main substantive achievement of neoliberalism has been the redistribution of wealth, rather than to generate, wealth and income.”

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    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
    5 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
    5 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
    6 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
    7 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
    7 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
    7 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
    1 week 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
    9 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
    10 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
    12 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
    15 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
    15 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
    18 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
    2 days 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
    3 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
    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago