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Participate in teh Golden Garth awards

Written By: - Date published: 12:25 pm, December 16th, 2009 - 25 comments
Categories: Media - Tags: , , ,

journalist.jpgJames at Editing teh Herald has started the Golden Garth awards aimed at rewarding the recipients at the Granny. You should all get over there and suggest candidates. I’m puzzling on it myself because there are so many good candidates.

I’m aware that some think that the Dom Post is worse than the Granny, but you’re wrong. I can’t read the Dom Post because they haven’t produced it on an iPhone readable format yet, so I can’t read the rag. What I can’t read, I consign to the dust of a previous century.

At least the Granny has a smart-phone format that I scan-read on the bus. I also scan freebie copies of the antique hard-copy format at the cafe while waiting for the wake-up third coffee of the day (also known as “how to get up the lift without snarling” coffee). Seeing a hard-copy given away by Granny means that I join the interesting fifty percent or so of their ‘readership‘ figures that they sell to advertisers. Subscriber numbers are so 2oth century – as well as being pretty damn embarrassing.

The readership numbers themselves are kind of weird – do they count my iPhone access? I read that because it is convenient and I largely avoid the advertisers. But I’m digressing into a rant about newspaper responses to new media formats1. Lets get back to the Golden Garths…

The categories for the Golden Garth are:-

  • Worst Opinion Columnist: It’s going to be difficult to budge the man himself from this award but, if anyone can do it, it’s almost anyone else writing opinion columns for the New Zealand Herald.
  • Most Egregious Example of Advertising Masquerading as News: A Herald favourite, be it a press release dressed up as news, or just an unprompted gushing about a major advertiser.
  • Biggest Media Beat-up: Once the Herald has tasted blood, there’s no limit to how many times they’ll ring up Bos McCoskrie and find out what he thinks. Hone Harawira is a racist, AND didn’t wear a motorcycle helmet? AND he went to Auckland Grammar?
  • Worst Article: The big one. It’s the ‘Best Picture’ of the Golden Garths, and there’s a lot to choose from.

You’d think that this is easy, but as Danyl at DimPost says on the worst opinion columnist

But here’s the fascinating thing you’d be wrong. Garth George is not the Herald’s worst writer.

But when I consider other national newspapers or magazines I can think of columnists I don’t like Michael Laws, say I just can’t think of any regular columnists whose work is literally incomprehensible, so it seems strange that the country’s largest newspaper has so many of them. Does anyone else think this is a bit weird?

I do, indeed2. This is the category I’m most interested in because it is the closest to what we do here. When I started to think about it, there is a hell of a lot of choice.

The iconoclastic bombast from Rotorua is well-written and usually pretty damn clear about what Garth thinks. I have a soft spot for George because he writes clear vitriolic and totally unambiguous opinion about whatever has him riled this week. It is often wrong in fact, but always very clear.

The political columnists are just about as bad, but better written. John Armstrong would be a favorite amongst authors here, but again you can argue about his content (until recently largely National party spin), but not his writing style or the clarity of his argument – we just find it a bit simple minded. Same with Fran O’Sullivan (largely Business Round-table spin) but well written and very clear about what she thinks and why. Audrey Young seems to wander around with well written pieces that often seem to reflect who she talked to last about what the punters want to see. What is curious about her is that her blog pieces are usually a lot better than what gets into the Herald.

But lets not focus on the negatives. I really do miss Colin James. He was probably the closest I’ve seen to writing balanced assessments on politics in the Herald – probably why he had to leave. Brian Rudman is a good quality read because I always learn more than I already knew when reading his articles, and he still writes for Granny.

You could go to the stark raving columnists generating fluff pieces like Jim Hopkins3, Noelle McCarthy, Bill Ralston, Rosemary McLeod4 or John Roughan. You have to share the particular context that their head was in at the time they wrote the column, otherwise their columns are essentially incomprehensible. Michael Lhaws is in a  different category – all you have to do is look at what opinion gets him the most attention.

Then there are others. Like some of the editorials which are often so outrageous you can see why they are totally anonymous. There is so much choice for the Golden Garth.

Say what you like about the unpaid writing around this site and other blogs. People get paid for writing some of the twaddle that passes for opinion pieces that winds up in the Herald. They really need to add a comments section that cuts holes in some of the waffle and improves the writers.

Finally in the comments at EtH5 there is this absolute gem about a ‘news’ article also known as “unchecked press release” so characteristic of the Granny.

Anonymous said
Certainly the worst article I saw in the Herald this year was this piece from Alice Neville, in which she reports that 1080 and brodificoum were detected in various biological samples from the Hauraki Gulf, without revealing that the testing device used was an Electroacupuncture machine, not anything actually suited to the purpose:

  1. If anyone knows of any other news media that has a decent smartphone format, leave a link in comments. I’ll put a list up as a page later. Many of the blogs already have it, but the mass media
  2. The word ‘indeed’ is a bad habit I’ve picked up from DPF. It is like a ‘relaxed’ version of a “ummm”. If I use it much more I will have to add it to the auto-moderated words.
  3. Jim Hopkins seems to live in an ‘interesting’ world. He should really market it to the visitors to the K Rd nightclubs up the road.
  4. Ditto. However Rosemary should probably market through the hydroponics gardening industry.
  5. I tidied the raw link up.

25 comments on “Participate in teh Golden Garth awards”

  1. Noko 1

    Bourgeoisie comforts are no above you then? I’m glad for you that you have enough money to have three coffees at a cafe in the morning, and you have enough money to buy an iPhone and pay the excessive monthly fees. You’re a Labour supporter, aren’t you lprent?

    • felix 1.1

      zOMG shouldn’t the uppity bastard be down a mine or something?

      • Noko 1.1.1

        Don’t be facetious, Felix.
        It seems disingenuous to be preaching socialist orientated policies while living a lifestyle that works off the back of the poor. Especially products like the iPhone which rely on the exploitation of workers in Chinese factories. I think it’s Foxconn who produce iPhone hardware, who have been caught up in breaking labour laws, which isn’t know for it’s worker protection in the first place.

    • lprent 1.2

      Always amusing seeing people make simplistic assumptions. I also have a BSc in earth sciences, MBA in operations management, a lot of other papers across compsci and social sciences and have been in the highest tax brackets for almost my entire working life. And I’ve been a Labour supporter for a long time because the conservatives tend to be short-term thinking idiots.

      I’ve been a full-time programmer for close to 20 years – caffeine is my lifeblood and coffee is how I ingest it. I do a lot of net programming as well as this site. My iPhone is my 3G wireless modem. Turned out that when I had to replace my cellphone, that I could get an iPhone with internet tethering on version 3 of the OS. That meant I could dump my old vodem (@$50 per month) and get an iPhone under a reasonably high monthly contract for less than I was paying for the old cell plan + vodem. Made a lot of sense. Especially since I can also read websites on the bus.

      Your point is? Probably that you have problems thinking past labels, and that you think of upfront list prices rather than costs over the lifetime of a project.

      • Noko 1.2.1

        Well, as I said to felix, it’s more about where and how iPhone’s are made more than anything, though I will knowledge that this really isn’t the place for my comment which was little more than an ad hominem.

        • lprent 1.2.1.1

          If I had to spend too much time thinking about where the things I use are made, then I’d never get any work done. Have you any idea of the number of components there are in a computer?

          I keep an eye on it for some products, but more for environmental grounds than anything else. Like where my power is generated. How much fuel consumption my car has and should I take the bus or drive. But I’m not religious, so I indicate preferences rather than absolutes.

          • Noko 1.2.1.1.1

            So you don’t care that the product you bought was produced from exploitation of human labour? Just say so, instead of dancing around the subject.

            • lprent 1.2.1.1.1.1

              No – I said that I don’t have time to find out. The decision to get an iPhone vs something else was made in about 20 minutes, most of which was spent on features and analysis of the OS.

              I pick and choose what I will concentrate on, and that tends towards environmental issues.

              Tell me, do you know the amount of germanium in the motherboard of your computer? Aren’t you concerned by overuse of this extremely rare metal? And you’re asking me about a replaceable resource – go and play with yourself. There is no way that everyone can know everything of concern – so you prioritize.

      • Ag 1.2.2

        You actually tell other people that you have an MBA?

        I tend to think that Bob Jones was right about MBAs.

        By all means get one, but don’t tell anyone.

    • mike 1.3

      Isnt it strange that Iprent delights in the slow demise of the older hard print technology that employes thousands of blue collar workers (the majority who belong to the EPMU) while embracing the shiny iPhone that pours billions into wealthy american wallets. But isn’t he just so hip wid it..

      • Noko 1.3.1

        Mike, I’m not a right wing fool, I’m just questioning lprent’s lifestyle which relies on the exploitation of others. With your philosophy, it’s even worse. Ad hominems are only applicable when they’re actually relevant.

        • mike 1.3.1.1

          Whatever mate? My point is as a lefty I thought he was all about protecting the battler against the ravages of corporate greed but it seems that mantra only applies if it fits with the latest trend in com-tech that makes him feel ‘smart’ and hip

          • Daveo 1.3.1.1.1

            Being a leftie doesn’t mean being a luddite, mike. Perhaps this misunderstanding explains a lot about your virulent attacks on the left.

            We on the left support technological progress, we also believe in supporting people who are displaced by that progress through an adequate welfare state with redundancy protections, unemployment assistance and opportunities for retraining and upskilling.

            It’s your market purist law of the jungle we object to.

            As for Noko’s purtanical lecturing about Lynn’s iPhone, get some bloody perspective mate. Consumer choices in a world of cowboy capitalism won’t solve anything. We need to change the structure that creates that exploitation and environmental damage if we want to make a difference. Lynn’s done far more on that count than you ever have. Let the man have his iPhone.

            • lprent 1.3.1.1.1.1

              Yeah. Besides the other use I have for it is a dinky app that allows me to reset the site if it fails – while I’m on the bus. These things are crazy… And very useful for a sysop.

          • lprent 1.3.1.1.2

            More like just plain useful…. Something that seems to have escaped your attention about yourself.

            But I’d have to say that you have a very strange idea about who and what I am. For that matter some really strange ideas about what a ‘lefty’ is. We leave the pack mentality for the maniacs on the right.

            I have to say that after what nearly 30 years Apple have finally come up with a device that is perfect. It is like a crescent spanner for sysops and programmers.

        • lprent 1.3.1.2

          My philosophy is my own – I am individual – as most of the left is as well.

          That is more that I can say about many on the ‘right’ can say. Haven’t you read my posts on the behavior of pack behaviors at the sewer. But it is a funny type of conformity. They keep insisting in the same voice that they are all different

      • lprent 1.3.2

        So? They need to move to new forms of media. I’m more worried about where that newsprint goes to when it rots. Leave the trees in the ground.

        Perhaps you’re thinking of one of the unionists who writes here?

  2. ropata 2

    The Dim-Post is the premier local satire blog, but Editing Teh Herald could be a contender If James posted a bit more often 🙂

  3. lyndon 3

    “The political columnists are just about as bed, but better written.”

    spelling always happens at the worst time, doesn’t it

    • lprent 3.1

      Good spotting. However I suspect it was more than spelling. I wrote that last night after I’d woken at at 0230 with my head buzzing about design ideas for what I’m working on at work. The post got written whilst I had an over-active brain, was very tired, and was post-writing as a distraction between about 0300 and 0400……… I’ll give you one guess what I was thinking about.

      English badly needs a compiler…

  4. Last night someone explained to me that Hill-Cone and McCarthy’s columns are in-jokes for them and their friends, and that the various editors at the newspaper are part of the clique and thus think they’re brilliant. That’s kind of what a lot of the blogs over at Stuff do, and I don’t mind them at all (I just don’t read them). But a column full of in-jokes for a couple dozen people seems like a strange thing to publish in a national newspaper.

    • Bright Red 4.1

      I hear that they were going to get rid of Gareth but he just kept on sending them copy. Newspapers are always desperate for cheap copy.

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  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
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  • An equitable way to support business
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
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  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
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  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
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  • What about renters?
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Living within our means.
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  • Transparency and the pandemic
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    1 week ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
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  • One way to solve the housing crisis
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    1 week ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
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    1 week ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
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  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
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    1 week ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
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  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
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  • We are all socialists now
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  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    2 weeks ago
  • Enlightenment when?
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  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
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  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
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    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
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  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
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    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
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  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
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  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
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    16 hours 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
    18 hours 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 day 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 ...
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    2 days 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 ...
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    2 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
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    2 days 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 ...
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    2 days 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 ...
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    2 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
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    2 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
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    3 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
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    3 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
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    5 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
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    6 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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    6 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
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    6 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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    7 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
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    7 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
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    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
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    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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    1 week ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
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    2 weeks ago