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Rules of the game

Written By: - Date published: 9:59 pm, December 3rd, 2007 - 54 comments
Categories: articles, dpf, election funding - Tags: , ,

Just had a read of Colin Espiner’s latest opinion piece. He certainly doesn’t pull any punches. Here’s what he has to say about the EFB:

But despite attempts by Labour to patch up the worst of the bill’s flaws, it remains a shoddy piece of legislation that should be consigned to the dustbin.

And, in the interests of balance, here’s what he had to say about the Nats:

There can be no doubt that National is every bit as motivated by self-interest as Labour over the bill. While the Opposition in public keeps its comments focused on the impact on legitimate public debate, it is deeply concerned its ability to campaign will be constrained by this legislation.

So far so ordinary but then…

There is also no doubt that the debate has been effectively hijacked by Right-wing supporters of National such as David Farrar and John Boscawen, who have even appeared in the media as “independent” commentators, despite one being National’s Wellington Central campaign manager and the other an Act Party fundraiser.

Excuse me? Did I read that right? “hijacked by Right-wing supporters of National such as David Farrar and John Boscawen”?? But this was a grassroots uprising wasn’t it? It’s not about partisan politics or big money at all. Surely?

Nah.

I’d thought the tide was turning for these astroturfers after nearly every media story covering last Saturday’s march mentioned how much money they’d pumped into it but to have it called by a senior political commentator is pleasing indeed. The anti-EFB campaign has hurt Labour. There’s little doubt about that but for DPF it’s been a Kamikaze run in terms of his credibility and his usefulness. Oh, he’s trying to inoculate it with the old “Aw shucks they just asked me what I thought and I told them” angle but given DPF’s work at National’s HQ and his years working for them in Parliament nobody but the blindest KB disciple would believe that. And it looks like the media has rumbled him.

It all reminds me of something an old hand in this game once told me, “backroom boys should stay in the backroom”. There’s a lot of slight of hand in politics. Always has been, always will be. Nearly every political story you read or view has been orchestrated by someone in the background – it’s all about tactical leaking, running lines and generally shaping the discourse and one of the things about being a backroom “boy” is you never get the credit for it publicly. But if you let your vanity get the better of you and step out into the media spotlight you’re marked. People know you as the face of a single issue or political position and bring that idea of you to everything you’re involved with. And that means you’re a one-trick pony and your value as an operator is shot. Who knows whether that’s fair or not, but DPF is learning about it now.

54 comments on “Rules of the game”

  1. Lampie 1

    wonder if the Herald will pick it up, might get a bit more credability (spelling??) in my books.

  2. Susan Deare 2

    Nice to see Espiner call it how it really is. Bloody sick of Farrar getting off as an ‘independent commentator’.

    Lampie – I don’t think the media will pick up on it. They’ve all used Farrar in some ‘independent commentator’ capacity over the past month. They’re not likely to admit their mistakes. Nonetheless, let’s hope IrishBill’s right, that at the very least Farrar’s reputation in this arena is as fucked as it deserves to be.

  3. Gruela 3

    The opposition to the EFB seem to have fatally diluted their protests by not concentrating on the few flawed aspects of the bill, but by appearing to rail against the very idea that they shouldn’t be allowed to spend as much money as they like during an election cycle. They were never going to win that argument, and having such an extremely right-wing cadre lined up against it probably didn’t help their cause either.

    Lampie

    As to spelling, try right-clicking over the word. Modern technology is here to help you.

  4. Lampie 4

    this has word chect?

    damn

    I don’t think the media will pick up on it.

    Typical

  5. outofbed 5

    Firefox checks spelling as you go

  6. Lampie 6

    Firefox checks spelling as you go

    Ah ha, I use cheap arse explorer, see Gruela, I have modern crap….about as useful as a National party DVD in a video store

  7. insider 7

    Jeez, you guys just lose all sense of proportion when it comes to DPF.

    Why should farrar’s reputation be at all affected by this? He has never denied who he is, where his alliegences lie, who he has worked for – you guys only know he has been working at Nat HQ because he openly posted it on his blog, you know the one you guys spend a lot of time reading as do apparantly thousands of others – including a lot of media judging by the regular references to it in news and gossip columns.

    YOu laughably say: “And it looks like the media has rumbled him.” Unbelieveable. Is this the same media that on plenty of other occasions have referred to him as “prominent national party blogger”? Since when is disclosure seen as a negative for someone’s reputation. Oh that’s right, since it became a conflict of interest to have an involvement with National – go ask Madelaine Setchell…

    Last I heard DPF did not make editorial decisions for major media, nor is he a news captioner/writer. Your vitriol would be better aimed at those who made the editorial decisions to give him a platform without mentioning these things – perhaps they forgot?

    Get a grip guys. Got anything to say on the deepening do-do that Parker’s finding himself in for meddling in the independence of the PS? You guys should be aligned with the PSA on this surely?

  8. Lampie 9

    cheers outofbed

  9. Gruela 10

    Interestingly, my original porn name was Fire Fox, but I had to change it. You know, for copyright reasons.

  10. Lee C 11

    Neat jump from the criticism of the EFb to the real issue taht is affecting New Zealand – another ‘Hollow Man’ paranoia trip.

    And, according to wikipedia only two days ago, DPF has links to neo-nazis!
    Is it possible that a concerted effort to neutralise DPF is now underway?
    I mean, surely it is about time that this cancerous and corrosive element in New Zealand politics was eliminated?

    Then we can all get the EFB into law with as little fuss as possible?

  11. IrishBill 12

    Insider – there is a big difference between having something tucked away on your blog and being branded in the mainstream media. If you really were an insider you’d understand that.

  12. insider 15

    I’d add that you have a fundamental misunderstanding of astroturfing, a key element of which is plausible deniability of any link back to a vested interest – you really should read Wiki (interesting some of the earliest examples of the practice came from unions…).

    Given Farrar’s open alliegence and Boscowen’s never denied alliegence and his public listing on the donations to ACT list, this really doesn’t meet the test any more than Destiny’s Enough is Enough work.

    But I suppose it is a neat new word for you to play with, just like “dog whistling”. But if you are going to use it, please at least make sure you use it appropriately.

  13. a_nerd 17

    Lee C

    I think you are onto it. The vindictive hate speech about the EB was so incorrectly linked to Nazi style behaviour when it was coming from Labour. All along it was DPF was had links to the Neo-Nazis… Well once a great supporter of the standard and a great proponent of left wing thinking had finished spreading propaganda he did.

    Shameful that he hasn’t been banned here and shameful that so many of the standards regulars have had vented their splines about DPF banning him on kiwiwblogblog

    Shame on the standard for not taking a stand against this sort of deliberate vandalism and concerted hate campaign.

  14. Tane 18

    Hi Insider,

    My personal position on DPF being quoted as an independent commentator is here:

    ‘Political commentator David Farrar’

    David Farrar is a political operative, and he’s National Party to the bone. He’s certainly not an independent commentator.

    That it’s come to this is no indictment on Farrar personally. He’s spent years building up Kiwiblog as the National Party’s online messaging hub, and judging by its popularity and influence he’s done a bloody good job of it too. You can hardly blame the guy for taking advantage of an opportunity to do the same thing in the mainstream media under the guise of independent commentary. The real fault lies with media outlets that should know better.

    I think IrishBill’s point was that
    a) the EFB campaign was a piece of astroturfing
    b) Farrar is not an independent commentator and it’s good the media are finally calling him on it, and
    c) By choosing to cross into the public arena he’s doing himself long-term harm as a backroom operator.

    I’m no big player myself, but from what I’ve seen of the game IrishBill’s analysis is right on the mark.

  15. Wayne 19

    That’s a lot of shame you’ve got there Nerd, but if you want therapy then you’re better off at http://dad4justice.blogspot.com/. This place is for grown ups.

    (Speaking of the EFB- captcah is ‘contribute $2,000’. Rock.

  16. burt 20

    Tane

    I guess what you are saying is that DPF wouldn’t get any senior job in the public service under the current Govt. I won’t argue with that.

  17. outofbed 21

    http://www.wastewatch.co.nz/
    more laughter

    captcha man leftwing ( someones having a larf)

  18. insider 23

    Thanks Tane, I completely agree with your old post.

    IB has taken a very different angle, missed the target completely and in a quite vinidictive and deliberate way. (but then he is the same supposed “expert” who said Claire Curren would not be running for the nomination in Dunedin South)

    You know DPF is open about who he is. He has been a minor but growing public figure on the political scene for a couple of years now. He’s hardly sudden;y “crossed over into the public arena”. Any harm he could have done was surely done long ago. ANd that is why his EFB campaign is not astroturfing

    Given that background, you can’t in all honesty blame him for how the media label him. It’s not as if they can say they didn’t know. It’s a bad choice of words to say they are “calling HIM on it”. Calling him on what? SOmething he’s never hidden? It’s more like they are doing their job properly. .

    I also don’t actually think David is much of a backroom operator in terms of framing strategy etc – no inside knowledge here, just a personal impression on the basis that he talks way too much and very publicly about what he thinks and does (not suggesting he is a loose talker – he just seems fairly straight with his views). Sure he works for Nat party, but then so do a few others in a range of roles, not all of which are machinating the succession of big business policies.

  19. Lee C 24

    DPF’s crime is that he is open about who he works for, and open about his political views and attitudes.

    Evidently this kind of ‘thought-crime’ must be cut out root and branch if democracy is to flourish..

    If only he would take a leaf out of others’ books and maintain a dignified secrecy about where his pay packets are sourced, then he would have the freedom to villify and besmirch whoever he likes with impunity.

    And, according to Sam Dixon, he’s a nazi-loving right-wing scumbag.

    I don’t know how he can lie straight in bed at night.

  20. The Double Standard 25

    Out of bed – I think you meant

    http://youpaidforit.co.nz/?q=image/tid/6

  21. The Double Standard 26

    IB – do you think that this place has such a high level of credibility, given you obsession with DPF and John Key?

    I would think that most would respect DPF for his openness about his connections, as posted on his site. We still don’t know anything about the standardistas. For all we know you could be working in the beehive.
    Farrar doesn’t label himself as an “independent commentator”, that is done by the media outlet.

    Nice effort to pull something out of the hat on your usual obsession on a column that is mostly about Labour’s failure to deliver effective law, or perform effective lawmaking. Given the lack of posting on the topic here, I looks like you are saying that the EFB should be dropped.

  22. IrishBill 27

    Insider – I was not being vindictive. I was simply pointing out that David has become the face of a PR exercise. And the anti-EFB campaign is astroturfing, it’s just a really bad attempt at it here’s David’s offsider Cameron Slater claiming it’s “apolitical”:

    I notice David has also got on board with Slater’s “You paid for it” campaign and is claiming that’s apolitical. I also noticed that at the Wellington rally he claimed he didn’t work for the National party when he was challenged by the lead counter-protester.

    As far as I’m concerned David has every right to involve himself in these campaigns but by becoming the public face of the anti-EFB campaign he has firmly identified himself as a National party operative whereas previously he was perceived only as a political insider with National party leanings – his disclaimer was part of that cover.

    I’m glad you brought Curran up. I admit I was very surprised when she confirmed she was standing for selection. That was because I had assumed she wouldn’t stand because she is also a “backroom boy”. It’s instructive to see what has happened to her since she decided to become a public figure.

  23. Santi 28

    “I’m no big player myself” C’mon Tane don’t give us that bogus humility.

    Those in the know can tell you’re famous (or was it infamous?) around the blogs for your impeccable behaviour, well reasoned and unbiased postings, and very good manners. You’re a good example for others in the loony left.

  24. Robinsod 29

    Sorry to post off-topic but this just in on DVDgate: “Produced for National by Production Shed TV, the cost has not been disclosed but The Press understands the party spent $110,000 on it.”

    I guess all those righties who banged on about “at least $50k” being wrong and slandered the standard’s research should apologise now?

  25. Lee C 30

    “I guess all those righties who banged on about “at least $50k” being wrong and slandered the standard’s research should apologise now?”

    Robinsod I think you will find that $110,000 is more than $50,000, so it is true to say the DVD did cost ‘at least’ $50,000.

    Who paid for it? Oh of course it will be illegal to spend your own money to make a political point soon, won;t it?

    Is that why Labour used tax-cash to sneakily update their website, mere weeks before the EFB came in so they could not be charged later with teh electioneering spend?

    I wonder how much taxpayers cash went into that venture, at least?

  26. Robinsod 31

    Lee – the point is National doesn’t like the EFB because it will stop them spending teh oodles of cash they’ve got from “anonymous” corporate backers. The DVD was an attempt to spend a big chunk of cash ($110k apparently) outside of spending limits for a PR tool that they could then use during the election campaign . It’s about National being the party of PR cash rather than the party of policies, ideas and all those other annoying things they need to govern properly.

    And you never answered my question about the march – you got a second chance to take a meaningful stand against the EFB on Saturday. Did you march this time? Or are you all talk?

  27. Lee C 32

    Robinsod I’m plainly all talk. The floor is yours. Enjoy it.

  28. Lee C 33

    PS while we are on the subject of PR Tools,

    Is that why Labour used tax-cash to sneakily update their website, mere weeks before the EFB came in so they could not be charged later with teh electioneering spend?

    How much taxpayers cash went into that venture, at least, do you estimate?

  29. Tane 34

    ‘sod, interesting you say that. Tracy Watkins says in the Dom Post this morning “the campaign is believed to have cost up to $200,000”

  30. MikeE 35

    If the anti EFB is astroturfing that must be news to:

    – NZ First Supporting Greypower
    – Green Party Supporting Anarchists
    – God knows who supporting Democrats for Social Credit
    – Former Members of Princess Street Labour
    – Human Rights Commission
    – NORML

    And other bastions of the vast right wing conspiracy

  31. Lee C 36

    Back on thread – I thought it was interesting that DPF has been villified by the BNP they issued a picture of him with ‘Juden’ written on his forrehead.

    Then He gets linked to the same Neo-Nazi organisation by Sam Dixon?

    Does this indicate that the Hard left and the Hard right are merely mirror images of each other, with someone like DPF in the middle?

    Surely it speaks volumes that they are both willing to use identical tactics to destroy a political opponent?

  32. Tane 37

    Lee, if it was Sam I suspect it was a drunken prank rather than anything malicious.

    Have you read the Hollow Men yet?

  33. Lee C 38

    The other interesting thing is that the left are very keen to discuss how National spends its money in support of its own world-view, but very loathe to discuss how much money the unions dedicate to extolling theirs. For example, let’s say (hypothetically) someone in the union movement was on a salary, to promote his or her union.

    Then let’s suggest they spend a lot of their time (most days, perhaps) slandering the opposition party in government.
    In the interests of transparency,
    i) How much of their labour time would count as electioneering?
    ii) How is that accounted for against election costs?
    iii) Are they able to claim they are private citizens? expressing a political view
    iv) does the fact they are doing this in work time mean they are doing it with the blessing of their employers
    v) should they rather be spending their time and justifying their salaries by dealing with issues which affect the members who pay their subscription fees?
    vi) Is ‘The Union’ merely a corrupted big-business interest, which exploits its members as cynically as Big business exploits the consumer?

    Just hypothetically, of course?

  34. Billy 39

    Tane, Sam said yesterday he wasn’t denying it.

    Key DVD canned over Clocks fiasco

    So I think that’s answered. If you can pass off anti-semitism as a “drunken prank” good on you. I am kind of against it.

  35. Lee C 40

    But back on thread – we would never know whether this was or was not the case, would we, because all theime those individuals are going on about ‘transparency’ anmd ‘Hollow Men’ in politics from their rather lofty high-ground, they are in fact hiding behind their own anonymity all the time!

    Go figure….

  36. Lee C 41

    Tane you have my address – send me a copy.

  37. Lee C 42

    But I will suggest that if that is all you guys are going to fight the next election on, it will sadly back-fire on you.

  38. Lee C 43

    Lee, if it was Sam I suspect it was a drunken prank rather than anything malicious.

    And yet here you are the very next day on a character assassination of DPF – are you ‘drunk’ too, tane, or was this just the logical next step in the demonisation of your enemies agenda?

  39. PhilBest 44

    The trouble with this, is something that Lee has touched on already, and that is that “independent commentators” on the Left are plentiful and tend to be provided for financially by either Taxpayer or Union money. There is no equivalent on the Right, of a similar number of paying positions for people like me, where we will be able to spend time for which our income will not be reduced, on blogging and political activism. Restrict the few like David Farrar and John Boscawen who do what they do at considerable financial sacrifice, and there would be nothing left. (Or EVERYTHING “Left”).

    I’ve only put some TIME into this sort of thing recently because of the EFB and the sheer danger of the way I can see NZ heading. But I can’t sustain it. I disappear from the blogosphere for considerable chunks of time at times.

  40. r0b 45

    Fascinating piece of in depth musical analysis above Phil!

    Anyway, don’t feel too sorry for the poor, underrepresented voice of the right. Seems to be they are adequately, nay bounteously represented by right wing think tanks such as:

    The Business Roundtable
    The Maxim Institute
    The New Zealand Institute
    The New Zealand Centre for Political Research
    and so on…

    Not to mention owning most of the “msm”, and perhaps, who knows, even influencing its editorial policy.

  41. Tane 46

    Lee, I don’t agree this piece was a character assassination, nor did I write it. Are you drunk? 🙂

  42. MOz 47

    Since we’re entertaining the pedants, There’s a lot of slight of hand in politics would have more tradition behind it with sleight in there instead. But I do like the metaphor of National’s slight hand not quite grasping the change in politics…

    And as for DPF’s crime, I thought that was repeatedly failing to learn from experience. He’s widely known as a National party hack, yet persistently tries to pretend that he’s not. In an environment where even letters to the editor get “Nic Tae, Middleton (Green Party member)” appellations, the claim that a staunch National Party supporter, member and employee has suddenly become independent reeks of … hoping the rest of us are gullible morons?

  43. PhilBest 48

    rOb: The Business Roundtable
    The Maxim Institute
    The New Zealand Institute
    The New Zealand Centre for Political Research:

    How many people are provided with paid time for blogging and activism by the above, and how does this compare with all those bureaucrats, ministerial aides, academics, and quangoes, all paid for by the taxpayer, plus Trade Union officials, that I refer to above, all beavering away at the leftwing agenda.

    The MSM “right wing”??????????????????????????????????????????????

    BALLS.

    The acid test: what does the MSM say when the Nats float the idea of privatising ANY government activity or asset?

    BALLS again.

  44. the sprout 49

    it sounds like you’re not big on books Phil, so try starting with this

  45. you know what i like instead of an argument sprouty? lots of question marks

    i am going to try that from now on. sometimes you do slay me with your nimble wit sprouty but now i am armed. take that?????????????????????????????

    and that???????????? haHA game, set, match

  46. PhilBest 51

    sprout: I’d like to recommend to you the following, which are a few of the books I have read: Hayek: “The Road To Serfdom”
    Friedman: “Free to Choose” Orwell: “Animal Farm” and “1984”
    Courtois: “The Black Book of Communism” Schumpeter: “Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy” Goldberg: “Bias” Horowitz: “Left Illusions”
    Huxley: “Brave New World”

    In a lighter vein, ALL of P.J. O’Rourke’s books.

    When you’ve read those, come back to me and I’ll recommend you some more. If I could persuade you to try just ONE, make it “Left Illusions” (a political journey” by David Horowitz.

    Regarding the video, Noam Chomsky particularly live on another planet in a paralell universe. His opposite numbers in US political commentary, David Horowitz, Peter Collier, Allan Dershowitz, and others, frequently use a standard term, “Planet Chomsky”. It is a huge mistaken direction to take in one’s life, to go headlong into Chomsky’s propaganda without first getting a firm grounding in the historical record of the REAL world. The works I refer to above are of course “classics” of the “right” wing (not in the Ayn Randish sense, mark), but I was passionately interested in all history from a young age and read extensively. I tell you, I have tried to start a couple of Chomsky books and if they weren’t library books, by the time I got to about the fifth page I would have torn them to pieces, but sufficed by throwing them at the opposite wall of the room and screaming for a bit.

    By the way, no response from anyone on my acid test over whether our media is right wing or left wing? Presumably YOU think they’re “right wing” because they refer to people like Joe Stalin, Mao tse Tung, and Pol Pot (on the rare occasion they DO mention those people – most of the time they’re slagging the USA past and present) in terms other than sainthood? Just curious.

  47. merl 52

    PhilBest, do you *really* believe in “the liberal media” (which is central to Horowitz’s worldview)?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Media_bias_in_the_United_States

    Because that seems like a right-wing meme to me.

  48. merl 53

    More on David Horowitz:

    “Baghdad is liberated. In the days to come let us not forget that if it were not for one man, and one man alone—George Bush—the people of Iraq would not be celebrating in the streets and pulling down Saddam’s statues today… We have entered the era of a new civil war between the forces of freedom and the powers of Islamo-fascist and communist darkness, and once again the left is clearly determined to take its stand on the other side. The good news is that America is back. Our military has performed superlatively. Our leadership has stood tall. We ourselves can celebrate over this and look confidently towards what lies ahead.”
    —FrontPageMagazine.com | April 9, 2003

  49. the sprout 54

    you’d really have to have shit for brains to think the msm was liberal

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  • 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    4 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    4 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    5 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    5 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    5 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    5 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    6 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    6 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    7 days ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    1 week ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    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 being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    1 week ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week 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
    21 hours 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    2 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    4 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 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, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 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
    7 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week 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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    1 week 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, ...
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  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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  • 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. ...
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  • 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 ...
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  • 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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  • 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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  • 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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  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
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  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
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  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
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  • 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 ...
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  • 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 ...
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    2 weeks 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 ...
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