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Refreshing honesty from English

Written By: - Date published: 12:44 pm, January 13th, 2017 - 58 comments
Categories: bill english, International, spin, Spying - Tags: , , , , ,

Bill English yesterday – New Zealand faces ‘possible’ election hacking

US spies have found Russia ordered an ‘influence campaign’ during the US election, and President-elect Donald Trump has finally acknowledged Russia did hack Hillary Clinton’s campaign emails.

Mr English says our elections could be hacked as well.

“It’s possible I suppose – just why someone would want to interfere with our elections would be hard to imagine.”

Indeed.

However, Mr English doesn’t believe our involvement in this spying system makes us more vulnerable.

“I wouldn’t think so, no – it actually means we can work with others who can understand our systems and get the benefit of their expertise,” he says.

And Mr English doesn’t know if we face any specific danger from Russian spying.

“Look I really don’t know,” Mr English says.

“One of New Zealand’s benefits is because we’re a long way away and fairly small we don’t attract too much attention.”

A nice change from the Nats’ usual style of the big scary beat-up – who could forget the non-existant ‘Jihadi brides’ threat, and the ‘returning foreign fighters’ threat?

So let’s hear it for a bit of refreshing honesty. I guess there’s no need for all that domestic spying apparatus then?

58 comments on “Refreshing honesty from English”

  1. greywarshark 1

    We need to attract attention to our country but the right sort of attention for us, not because of more political disasters and vicious and inhumane attacks.

    Maintaining the economy through continuing tourism and intriguing the world about our country’s products, and also the lasting effects of our efforts to produce a special culture that was humane and racially biased to getting on with each other.

    This is interesting – what art did for Bilbao’s (Spain) life.

    The Bilbao effect: How 20 years of Gehry’s Guggenheim transformed the city
    12 January 2017
    Twenty years ago, Bilbao was scarred by acts of terrorism and failing industry. The city decided to gamble on Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum. Not only did it help to save Bilbao, it also showed the world the transformative effect of art. WILLIAM COOK meets its director on its anniversary.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/1HL3drXNNWQVq7tpC6pMRsJ/the-bilbao-effect-how-20-years-of-gehrys-guggenheim-transformed-the-city

    • Glenn 1.1

      Bilbao Effect is working in New Plymouth with the opening of The Len Lye Centre. Fantastic way out building and unusual art from one of the masters. I don’t like the “art” and thought our council was nuts at the time it was suggested but it has certainly done wonders for New Plymouth tourism.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      We need to attract attention to our country

      Why?

      Maintaining the economy through continuing tourism and intriguing the world about our country’s products, and also the lasting effects of our efforts to produce a special culture that was humane and racially biased to getting on with each other.

      If you want the latter then you can’t do the former (ignoring the nonsensical construct of the latter part of the sentence).

      • greywarshark 1.2.1

        Sorry DTB but you are so out of it. I have never heard anything from you that would produce any useful answer to our employment needs. Perhaps you could open a centre for the dissemination of left wing political thoughtfor international students.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.1

          Ah, so, without being able to support your assertions you revert to ad hominem attacks.

          Got it.

          • greywarshark 1.2.1.1.1

            DracoTB
            You spend all your time asserting your ideas and finding someone else’s authority to rely on.

            I actually spend time looking for something practical that can help now and prevent wipe-out in the future. And I look for others more informed than I am to see what ideas are being advanced.

            • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1.1.1.1

              You spend all your time asserting your ideas and finding someone else’s authority to rely on.

              No, I spend time looking at what’s happening in the world, thinking about it and then putting forward my ideas. I back those ideas with the research that I’ve found explaining how they interact.

              So, why do we need the world to notice us?
              Why do you think NZ can have a lot of tourism while maintaining our “special culture”?

  2. Clump_AKA Sam 2

    Trump said words to the effect that there where 17 possible entities that hacked DNC servers and Russia was one of them. So every one does it, but it’s not election tampering, they just want to know who they will likely work with. We do it to, for Grossers bid to the UN (I believe happy to be corrected)

    So this is the pot calling the kettle black

    • aerobubble 2.1

      Its not that Russia did or did not, its that Trump wants to get along with Russia, and Russia has a problem, well lots of them. Firstly the muslim percentage is rising… ..taking a chunk of Ukraine with the orthodoxy people… …also, the argument about NATO expansion has to seen in context that the internal borders of the USSR changed overtime during, so a rigged adherence to them two decades after they were set, when Russia was in no position to regard them properly.

      Russia aint the enemy, stupid Muslim dictators rigged aligned to fundamentalism, or worse, desperate to keep fundamentalists under control justifying their own existance and so keep fuelling a small fundamentalist fringe. aka Saudi

      • Clump_AKA Sam 2.1.1

        What? No, I don’t even know where to start with this. Those points you raised are perfectly fine democratic behaviour ie Ukrian and Crimea voted for it, and Putin accepted that process. I see where your trying to go with a kind of imperial expansionist land grab. But the empires are being built in the digital real ie finance/fraud/and scandal which has nothing to do with ethnicity

        • greywarshark 2.1.1.1

          Digital is world wide but we still live within geographical boundaries and nation concepts to which we adhere despite digital flashes attempting to break us into nothing units with almost subliminal messages that irritate our synapses more than they enrich our minds.

        • aerobubble 2.1.1.2

          i disagree obviously. Isis, Syria, had all the hallmarks of the US, Russia, Turkey, EU working with events to maximize the destrucion of Islamic terror. aka fight Isis in Syria, Iraq, not more in the west. Russia is a western nation. Sure its militrary, secret services, civil elites chose Putin to lead, but is this any more oxymoronic than the US choosing Trump, or the UK choosing Thatcher all those years ago. The trends today require more than nanny liberal cum-bi-ar-isms.

          As for imperialism, the Russia interests in Crimea, and so eastern Ukraine cannot be imperial grab, since they were once two decades ago, part of the same entity. You are not suggesting if a surgeon reataches your leg that it wasn’t your leg?

  3. aerobubble 3

    Talk about hysterical, Trump mania wall to wall, like it has anything to do with anything. Obama was checked by Congress, and Trump aint no Republician so Congress aint no friend.

    We’re part of a spying network coz its necessary for security to know whats going on. Its not like the grey power member who watches their neighbor twenty four seven and dobs their benefitary neighbor into rubbish control as they cleanup their yard to comply with the new fire law about to pass government and so have lots of rubbish bags, and no car or funds to pay for the refuse station charges. Govts have no infinite time resource like grey power members, aren’t demented in their adherance of local bylaws, and too authoritarian to have forgotten how civil society checks itself.

    Councils, like government have a duty of care to respect, not out of some do good sensiblitity, but because its the abuse of processes that threaten our way of life, wheather a grey power member, a terrorist, or whomever is dimminishing the collective peace. New fire rules will mean conscientious citizens with limited means will need extra temporary refuse options.

  4. Glenn 4

    When the world goes to shit be it Climate Change or some other effect then I think “safe place” New Zealand situated bang in the middle of the goldilocks zone will be attracting unwanted attention from bigger States and greedy slimeballs. Not to mention masses of desperate people arriving at our borders.’ more than we could cope with.
    NZ should be planning for this possibility.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      +1

      • Rob 4.1.1

        So whats that , bigger coastal defence, larger stock piles, greater survivalist skills, introduction of the home guard?

        Compulsary military training? What sort of planning are you wanting to undertake?

        • Clump_AKA Sam 4.1.1.1

          I wonder what my great grandfather would say, probably you’re a dam fool

        • Glenn 4.1.1.2

          As far as planning I have no idea, I guess that’s what the people we elect are supposed to do however on past and current performance good luck on that.

          We have too big a coast to defend and are to small to stop any bigger nation from making us a “protectorate”. We can’t “build a wall”.
          Perhaps we should declare neutrality while we are ahead. Fat lot of good that did Belgium (twice).

          Stuffed if I know what we can and could do.
          It would be nice to know that if and when the shit hits the fan our “peers” in government have a Plan A,B and C.

          • Rob 4.1.1.2.1

            Well what about this Glenn, its risky and untried , but it might just protect our sweet assholes.

            How about we sign some agreements with some really big dudes who have some pretty serious kit. Maybe the US and Aus may be keen! I have an idea that if we do our little bit (as we don’t have too much to bring to the party , except some really solid people) they may help us out as well.

            I know, i know , its wacky and I’ll get flammed, but we could even call it ANZUS!

            • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.2.1.1

              How about we sign some agreements with some really big dudes who have some pretty serious kit.

              How about we don’t?
              I like having our own independent foreign policy that’s not dependent upon kissing arse.

              I know, i know , its wacky and I’ll get flammed, but we could even call it ANZUS!

              And look where kissing arse got us before – into two world wars fighting on the other side of the world. Which meant that we couldn’t fight in our own backyard when we actually needed to. Never mind the pressure to invade innocent countries when one of those big boys decides that they don’t like the leader because he’s selling oil in Euros instead of US$.

              • Rob

                Ok , fair enough comment, so when did we need to fight in our backyard when we were unable to ?

                • Clump_AKA Sam

                  Amateurs talk tactics, pros talk gear

                  • Rob

                    Nice one Clump, thanks for your input on that one.

                  • exkiwiforces

                    Amateurs talk about kit and tactics and us pros talk logistics among other stuff.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      It’s the logistics that has me saying that we need to build up our manufacturing and resource extraction capabilities.

                    • Clump_AKA Sam

                      Well we and I mean New Zealand will have a kind of tariff put on us sone. What I mean is it will be cost effective to target some niche manufacturing products in fisher&pickle brown group (happy to be corrected as its there medical division) provide some subsidies in this sector along with ten others in the mechanical/fabrication/engineering sector, scale them up. These skills takes time to grow. These sectors don’t need a whole lot of land so water and carbon foot print can be shrunk so we won’t have to dig giant holes.

                      Considering the average wage is about $70k, and each skilled worker generates 3 times the average ($210k) with ten workers a piece, we could generate $21 million per annum of useful work, those sectors would be marked up on the retail end, raising the national average wage, that wouldn’t immediately be redeployed to produce commercial of the shelf & military off the shelf systems.

                      In New Zealand. It’s really important to choose your design team 1st. Far to often a buyer will assume he can fit a hundred units on a section, then the design team comes in and say, “sorry, you can only fit 40 units on that section.”

                • Draco T Bastard

                  WWII

                  We went to Europe and fought the Nazis rather than staying here and fighting the Japanese.

          • exkiwiforces 4.1.1.2.2

            Glenn,

            New Zealand is easy to defend, it all comes down to money. What are you prepare to sacrifice for a strong Navy, Airforce , reintroduce Nation Serivce to bring back TF back to within 80 to 100% CE and those who refuse NS goes into Civil Defence. BTW, if that means New Zealand Scottish RNZAC is reformed i’m coming home.

            Finland, Sweden and Swiss are good examples for armed neutrality not those western Europe nations.

          • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.2.3

            We have too big a coast to defend and are to small to stop any bigger nation from making us a “protectorate”. We can’t “build a wall”.

            We’ve already got one – the Pacific Ocean.

            Actually preventing anyone from landing is actually quite easy. If we built reasonable defence capability no one would be considering trying to invade us.

            • exkiwiforces 4.1.1.2.3.1

              Just need a strong Navy and Airforce to deny , delay aand defend the Air/ Sea gap. Reintroduce National Serivce to bring back the TF units back to within 80 to 100% of CE and those who refuse NS goes into Civil Defence.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.3

          A reasonable defence force capable of actually defending us against invasion.
          The manufacturing capability to support that.
          The extraction and processing industry to support that.

          Of course, that would mean developing the economy which all political parties seem to be against these days as they focus simply on producing more of what we already do for trade thus making us weak and vulnerable.

          • Clump_AKA Sam 4.1.1.3.1

            Well said

          • Rob 4.1.1.3.2

            Funny, I do know a little about manufacturing.

            One thing I have learnt is that to be pretty good at it you need to specialise in the particular industry , ie chopping and changing does not create great results.

            So I can only speculate that when you wrote that you require a manufacturing capability to support defence against invasion (your words), that means you would like to start building a NZ arms and munitions industry big enough to defend NZ against any threat.

            • Clump_AKA Sam 4.1.1.3.2.1

              Where are you going to get the certified wielders? Korea/Germany/US/UK/NZ?

              • Rob

                You know Clump in a very small way (if you do think welding is the only issue in NZ manufacturing) you agree with the point.

                This is one of the reasons why we have engaged in international agreements for defence.

                • Clump_AKA Sam

                  Quote from Draco “these days as they focus simply on producing more of what we already do for trade thus making us weak and vulnerable”

                  Before you continue, votedefence scheduled a boost of about 20 billion over the next 20-25 years. so it’s not worth exploring further.

                  • Rob

                    Not too sure how I reply to that one Clump.

                    Just a kind suggestion in regards to your response.

                    Perhaps if you re-read it tomorrow morning, “before you get engaged in the weekend”, you may critically assess it as not your best work.

                  • Glenn

                    Perhaps NZ needs to learn from Switzerland. They have mountains as a barrier. As Draco said, we have the Pacific (and Tasman).
                    Switzerland has a strong armed force and militia and makes much of it’s armaments..
                    Although whether it would work with our population who knows?

                    ” Switzerland has the second largest armed force per capita after the Israeli Defence Forces.[6]
                    Switzerland has long held a posture of neutrality regarding war and conflict. To maintain a strong defense, the Swiss instead focus on maintaining a strong well-regulated militia.
                    Gun ownership is high in Switzerland, at approximately .5 guns per person. About 30% of Swiss citizens own guns. Military issued firearms must be purchased from the government after service, and then the gun is converted to a non-assault weapon. Restrictions can be placed on both the firearm and its ammunition.
                    In Switzerland, you don’t need a permit for hunting weapons, but you do for other firearms and ammunition.
                    Every time you buy a non-hunting weapon you need to get a background check (you can get up to 3 guns at one time).”

                    http://factmyth.com/factoids/switzerland-requires-citizens-to-own-guns/

            • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1.3.2.2

              One thing I have learnt is that to be pretty good at it you need to specialise in the particular industry

              For research many technologies cross many fields. The microwave came out of defence research for example.

              So I can only speculate that when you wrote that you require a manufacturing capability to support defence against invasion (your words), that means you would like to start building a NZ arms and munitions industry big enough to defend NZ against any threat.

              Yes but I think you’ll find that such industry is really quite small. I tend to think of a missile shield that can stop things getting close rather than dreadnoughts to go out and pound things so doesn’t require millions of people nor a vast array of weapons and weapons platforms. In other words, research and manufacturing within a very tight focus.

              You use welders as an example of where we don’t have enough of something but that’s not really a problem – if you have automated welders. I’m a great believer in researching and implementing more automation.

    • greywarshark 4.2

      Glenn
      I read a short story about this scenario in the Listener in 1970s. Everyone in NZ had to live on hills so the flat could be farmed. Each country had its quotas of foreign people that had to be settled.

      Animals could not be farmed and the hero of the story got looks on the train because of him wearing an old sheepskin jacket. Even chooks were in short supply, meat of any kind was not allowed, and he had travelled a distance to a friend in the country and been given a secret, precious egg to transport home.

      • Rob 4.2.1

        Reads like a communist wet dream, be careful, you may end up with some stuck down keys on your key board!

  5. Sacha 5

    Russia would be spying on Fonterra here. That’s about it.

    • Rob 5.1

      Well, obviously you are the spy expert Sacha, so you would you know!

      • Clump_AKA Sam 5.1.1

        Because GCSB is spying on every one else

        • Rob 5.1.1.1

          Sorry, I should rephrase my response.

          Obviously Sacha & Clump are experts in the world of spies, its also sits nicely alongside Clumps expertise in international certified welding.

  6. mosa 6

    Bill English does refreshing honesty.. Yeah right !

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    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 ...
    4 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 ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    5 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

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

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

  • Decisions made on urgent turf maintenance
    The Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson has announced that urgent maintenance of turf and care for plants in non-plantation nurseries will soon be able to go ahead under Level 4 restrictions. “The Government has agreed that urgent upkeep and maintenance of biological assets will be able to go ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 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
    6 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
    9 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
    11 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
    12 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
    15 hours ago
  • Communities step up to help New Zealanders stay connected and fed during lockdown
    Communities stepping up to help New Zealanders stay at home to break the transmission of COVID-19 and save lives have received Government support, said Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni. “Delivering groceries for the elderly who can’t shop online, providing data packs for low income families to keep them connected, and being ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • 120 COVID-19 testing centres now operating
    Across New Zealand 120 sites are taking samples to be tested for COVID-19.   68 community based assessment centres (CBACs) have been established to take samples from people with COVID-19 symptoms. Alongside this, 52 other centres including designated general practices, swabbing centres, and mobile clinics are now testing people for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Covid19: Government moving quickly to roll out learning from home
    The Ministry of Education is working with partners to develop a package of options so that students can learn at home when Term 2 begins on 15 April, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Supports are also being prepared for households with children under five, to help parents and whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Making learning from home accessible to Māori learners and whānau
    Māori Television to begin educational te reo programmes Ki te Ao Mārama – a new online learning space Thousands of hard copy learning packs ready for distribution Helpdesk and advice service for kōhanga, kura and wharekura Television, the internet and hard copy learning packs are some of the ways whānau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand to provide assistance to Vanuatu following Tropical Cyclone Harold
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced an initial package of support to help the people and the Government of Vanuatu respond to the impact of Tropical Cyclone Harold. “Our Pacific neighbours have been hit by a Category 5 Cyclone at the same time as dealing with the economic impacts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Planning for the future of tourism
    Tourism New Zealand to lead work reimagining the way tourism operates in post-COVID-19 world. Ministers to review International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy investment plan. The Government, industry and business are working together to develop a plan for how tourism will operate in a post-COVID-19 world, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 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
    6 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