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Sickening attempts at political-point scoring

Written By: - Date published: 11:15 am, November 29th, 2010 - 61 comments
Categories: Mining, scoundrels - Tags:

It’s dismaying to see a few rightwing commentators using the Pike River disaster to attack restrictions on mining in national parks. The claims are baseless and crassly opportunistic. One expects the like of Matthew Hooton, Whaleoil, and Paul Holmes to try to score political points off tragedy but I thought better of Fran O’Sullivan.

It started with Matthew Hooton claiming that the explosion is all the fault of the restrictions that were placed on the mine. See, the coal is under Paparoa National Park, which is protected by Schedule 4, so Pike River weren’t allowed to dig directly down to it. Instead, they were granted special permission to make some minimal constructions in the Park (one end of the ventilation system, etc) and dig a 2km tunnel underneath it from the edge of the Park to the coal.

Hooton says that they should have been allowed to dig down and, on the basis of no evidence whatsoever, says that had they been allowed to do so there would have been no disaster. ( if you missed this on Radio Live, Hooton will be making exactly the same claims on Nine to Noon this morning and later this week in the NBR – he’s a spin doctor, repeating bullshit ad nauseum is what he does).

Of course, beneficiary bludger and convicted criminal Cameron Slater was only too keen to jump on the bandwagon. Yup, apparently it’s all the fault of the Department of Conservation who followed the law and didn’t let outsiders come and tear up highly valued conservation estate so they could sell coal overseas.

National Party media trainer Paul Holmes, who never has anything intelligent to say, has chipped in by musing that the mine ought to have been open-cast. Let’s see, Holmes is proposing removing 160m thick of rock across an area probably several square kilometres in size to get at a 7m thick seam of coal. Does that sound like a feasible exercise to you? Pike River didn’t want to do that – it’s logistically and economically impossible. You open cast mine deposits on the surface, for deep ones, you dig small holes to the seam, and then dig it up. Holmes is a twit.

Let’s be clear: DoC and the Minister said ‘you can have the coal if you minimise the damage to the environment and here are our restrictions’. It was up to the company to decide whether it could and would mine safely within those limits, and up to the Department of Labour to ensure satefy standards were met. DoC isn’t in the business of deciding what is and isn’t safe mining, it’s in the business of protecting our natural heritage. And, regardless, opencast mining wasn’t an option.

Slightly more concerning than a PR hack whose a laughingstock because he’s always so transparent, Daddy’s boy Slater, and bumbling old Holmes is O’Sullivan. She usually has the inside running on where National/ACT spin is heading. So it worries me when O’Sullivan asks:

“whether “green mining” can be done in an environment underscored by an old faultline.

And whether mine bosses took their eye off the ball as they “cut and tucked” their project to meet demands of the Department of Conservation and local Maori to put environmental preservation centre-stage.”

And then criticises the following sentence from the Pike River annual report:

“So long as mining is done sensitively the country wins both ways. You get the economic value from the mine and you still maintain the conservation values.”

As if economics should always trump to environment.

The clear inference from all this is that some on the Right want to take advantage of the Pike River disaster and the public’s understandable desire for solutions to attack environmental protections around mining, especially in National Parks.

It would be sickening if, having lost the Schedule 4 debate, the Right now tries to use this tragedy as a backdoor into more, unrestricted mining on our conservation estate. But it looks like that’s exactly the game some of them are playing.

61 comments on “Sickening attempts at political-point scoring”

  1. I suspect that as time goes by it will become more and more apparent that this is the result of poor management and slack industry standards.

    This quote was recently in the Herald:

    International mine rescue experts say they are shocked a mining disaster the magnitude of the Pike River tragedy occurred in a modern mine.

    International Mines Rescue Body secretary Alex Gryska said the world would be watching an investigation into the tragedy, which claimed the lives of 29 men.

    Mr Gryska said he would not expect a disaster of that magnitude in New Zealand.

    “Having incidents like this in developing countries is one thing. Having it happen in western countries is uncommon.”

    The link is at http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10690215

    Surgical mining anyone?

  2. grumpy 2

    Apart from laying into the quoted commentators personally, this post does not address the issues they raise. There is widespread concern that environmental concerns imposed conditions on the mining company that may have lead to more risk being assumed. That is a valid concern and will no doubt be directly confronted by the Commission of Inquiry.

    Some of the horror stories – like the stopping of a second ventliation shaft due to the presence of a nearby blue duck and the uphill shaft requiring more reliance on forced ventilation are concerning.

    Your post looks more like a pre-emptive strike on commentators who are raising valid concerns.

    • Bright Red 2.1

      the post does address the myth about “lthe stopping of a second ventliation shaft due to the presence of a nearby blue duck” and the uphill shaft.

      It quite rightly says that DoC’s business conversation. It is up to the business to mine safely wihin the rules or not mine at all.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        It is up to the business to mine safely wihin the rules or not mine at all.

        And that is what they call a TKO my friend.

      • grumpy 2.1.2

        Bright Red says;

        “the post does address the myth about “lthe stopping of a second ventliation shaft due to the presence of a nearby blue duck” and the uphill shaft.”

        Really? Where? and what is your definition of “addresses”?

        • Bright Red 2.1.2.1

          The bit that starts “let’s be clear”, genius:

          “Let’s be clear: DoC and the Minister said ‘you can have the coal if you minimise the damage to the environment and here are our restrictions’. It was up to the company to decide whether it could and would mine safely within those limits, and up to the Department of Labour to ensure satefy standards were met. DoC isn’t in the business of deciding what is and isn’t safe mining, it’s in the business of protecting our natural heritage. And, regardless, opencast mining wasn’t an option.”

          • grumpy 2.1.2.1.1

            Looks like the “blue duck’ was never there…..

            • Bright Red 2.1.2.1.1.1

              have you got any source to substantiate this ‘single blue duck stopped a ventilation shaft’ story?

              As far as I can tell, the story was made up by Hooton

              • Vicky32

                I must have misheard Nine to Noon – it sounded as if he was attributing the blue duck story to Matt McCarten???? 🙂
                Deb

                • Marty G

                  nah. Hooton was saying it on Friday. Whatever McCarten said was on Saturday. Oh, I’ve got the transcript…

                  • Marty G

                    here’s what McCarten said on Q+A:

                    “MATT The point you made about going up, common sense would suggest that’s a problem, right? And there was a discussion about they’ve only got one ventilation—There was a discussion about, when they built it, having more than one, and I think you made the point about conservation needs versus safety, and then they found an endangered species of blue duck and decided not to have the extra ventilation. So it just seemed a bit—It’ll come out in the commission, as you say, and we don’t have the serious mining professionals around cos it was going to save money. So out of this inquiry all of the political parties are going to take some heat. It happened under the Shipley Government, that decision; Clarke’s government approved the mine and the way it was set up; and Key’s government is getting the end result of it.”

                    nothing about a single duck.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      like the stopping of a second ventliation shaft due to the presence of a nearby blue duck

      What makes that a horror story?

      and the uphill shaft requiring more reliance on forced ventilation are concerning.

      Forced ventilation would be required no matter which way the shaft went. The only way you could not have it would be open cast and that was/is impractical.

      • grumpy 2.2.1

        And the denial of permission for a second ventilation shaft???

        I agree that open cast is impractical at Pike River but there is widespread anger that the company and it’s workers were forced into having to take more risk in an already risky business in order to provide employment and economic growth in an area already suffering the negative impacts of green politics.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1

          To maintain the environment and the economy economic growth isn’t always possible and the company didn’t have to build the mine if they didn’t like the conditions. They would have designed around them (which means designed around one vent. shaft) and, supposedly, up to safety standards. Having one or two ventilation shafts in that case is irrelevant which makes the argument a distraction and not an argument.

  3. Sanctuary 3

    grumpy – the point is there is no evidence whatsoever for these ignorant outbursts from the likes of Hooten, Holmes and Slater. In fact, the published evidence marks them as simply ignorant at best and at worst, displaying ignorance combined with a miserable, opinionated stupidity. Much as it seems to be a constant source of surprise to them personally, the opinion of a bunch of arrogant white male Tories is not automatically fact, be it a Road of National Significance or a coal mine. That O’Sullivan is repeating it merely makes her look as stupid as the rest of them.

    • grumpy 3.1

      No, the point is that these concerns have been expressed by locals for a long time. They will be directly addressed by the Royal Commission and previous decisions either by the company, DoC or the Government will be ruthlessly exposed. It appears that the Left has a problem with that.

      The “locking up” of the Coast is one of the reasons for Labours electoral defeat and why the EPMU has been very conservative in their comments.

      • Pascal's bookie 3.1.1

        Try and keep up.

        DOC is legally obliged to protect DOC land’s intrinsic value as much as possible. They are not allowed, by law, to take it easy on people who want to do something that would daamge that value. They must be as stringnet as they can, and are under no obligation to say that a m ine can go ahead. The default postion is ‘protection of the land’, not ‘allowing activity’.

        In fact, sctivity can only be allowed where the land is protected.

        On the other hand, mining companies are allowed to not mine if they think the conditions would be too dangerous.

        The decision to go ahead with the mine can only be the company’s. For people to blame DOC, or greenies or whoever else, is to say that the company lacked the option of saying ‘no’.

      • handle 3.1.2

        “The “locking up” of the Coast is one of the reasons for Labours electoral defeat”

        I must have imagined all those people marching and campaigning this year against mining of Conservation land and then this government backing down on it.

    • KJT 3.2

      Hey, less of the prejudice against white males.

  4. Jeremy Harris 4

    I thought the environmental “smoking gun” as it were, was that DOC denied a permit for a second ventilation shaft on conservation grounds..?

    Open cast mining at that depth is the same as digging out a 20 story building – that doesn’t seem to make sense to me…

  5. ianmac 5

    John Keys words were to the effect that the Inquiry would have the “future of coal mining hanging in the balance.” Hope not. Maybe he just means that the Inquiry outcome will be important but……

    • grumpy 5.1

      Looks like the Inquiry may well be the catalyst for an easing of conservation restrictions to allow safer mining practices on DOC land. That result would be welcome on the Coast. Of course, Chris Carter will face some quite interesting grilling over his role.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1

        Looks like the Inquiry may well be the catalyst for an easing of conservation restrictions to allow safer mining practices on DOC land.

        When, of course, there is no need to which just means that the RWNJs have found another excuse to destroy the environment that we depend upon to live for their own personal gain.

        • grumpy 5.1.1.1

          Given that everything we need to exist is either grown or dug up from the ground and that on the Coast virtually all private land is taken up with high value farming and everything else has been tied up in the DoC estate, – what is left to sustain the people who live there?

          Green restrictions on any activity that would create employment led to the backlash against Labour, for all the cvlaims that the Coast was the cradle of Labour, the local population has been betrayed by a party taken over by city dwelling sophisticates with quaint ideas such as snails, ducks and trees trump humans.

          • handle 5.1.1.1.1

            “what is left to sustain the people who live there?”

            Let me see, how about tourism and conservation jobs around the Coast’s native assets? Community and health services. High value arts, online services and other future-oriented work.

            Or they could always move somewhere else like people have done for centuries when economies change and old industries are no longer viable.

            • grumpy 5.1.1.1.1.1

              Easy for latte swilling city dwellers to say, but when the crunch comes, there just ain’t that much of that type of work. Do you want the Coast kept “pristine” for the odd city dweller to drive through once in their life, or the cut price Asian tour on Asian owned busses, staying in Asian owned hotels to sleep through.

              “Or they could always move somewhere else like people have done for centuries when economies change and old industries are no longer viable.”

              Is that the modern equivalent for “let them eat cake”?

              • handle

                It’s the modern equivalent of saying there’s no ‘right’ to mining jobs, mate. And the other type of job doesn’t happen on its own with a do-nothing government. Might want to think about that come election time next year.

              • pollywog

                …how about getting ’em all out building that cycleway through DOC lands and down the coast for starters ?

            • KJT 5.1.1.1.1.2

              Maybe we should pay them to keep the coast pristine. Like the Swiss pay their farmers to keep the countryside looking nice.

              Much as I disagree with the ETS as a money go around, it could help pay for keeping West coast forests.

          • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.1.2

            Given that everything we need to exist is either grown or dug up from the ground…

            Yes, but that doesn’t mean that we should take it all immediately does it? In fact, we should be taking as much as we need and no more and needs to be within the renewable resource base. Anything more is unsustainable.

            BTW, digging up the coal and selling it to China isn’t our best option – keeping it in the ground and using it minimally is.

            what is left to sustain the people who live there?

            And how are they going to be sustained when there’s no environment?

            • grumpy 5.1.1.1.2.1

              You had me with you in your first part but then lost me with ” keeping it in the ground and using it minimally is.”

              Given that the use for this coal is specialised to smelting steel, does this mean you would support more of this type of industry for NZ?

              • Draco T Bastard

                I would support such industry up to the necessary amount to cover our needs. I’ve also said before that we should be exporting completed products and not raw materials and the coke is obviously a raw material.

              • KJT

                Yes. We should be keeping it here for our needs for finished products such as wind generators and electric transport.

    • Puddleglum 5.2

      Ianmac, I think you’ll find his words were “future of underground mining hanging in the balance” – or words to that effect.

      That’s what I heard on Morning Report this morning. Just after that clip from Key, Geoff quizzed Tony Kokshoorn (sp?) and asked him if Key’s comments sent a shiver down his spine. His reply? “No, I know where he’s coming from.”

      I’m sure he does, and he (Key) is not ‘coming from’ wanting to eliminate mining.

      The ducks (and I mean the Right wing commentators, not the blue ducks) are getting into a row on this.

      It’s also worth noting that Jon Gadsby (yes ‘the’ Jon Gadsby) was very quick off the ball with a letter to the editor of The Press (on Friday) blaming the Greens (as above) and claiming that making Pike River an open cast mine would be a good memorial to the miners.

      There were a couple of quick responders agreeing with him in Saturday’s paper and an editorial saying how important it was – for a ‘healthy and growing economy’ – to ‘balance’ the economy and environmental concerns. Sounds so reasonable but I wouldn’t trust the scales. (Sorry can’t find links for the Weekend Press on the internet).

  6. Doug 6

    It looks like Grumpy wants us to get into mountain top removal and turn us into the cesspit that is Western Virginia

    • grumpy 6.1

      Doug;
      “It looks like Grumpy wants us to get into mountain top removal and turn us into the cesspit that is Western Virginia”

      No, see 2.2.1

      What I would like to see is the cause of the accident and all factors leading up to it – including whatever role green politics has played.

      You guys seem to be very upset that DoC and the role of the previous Labour Govt might be scruitinised, why?

      • Bright Red 6.1.1

        I’m upset that you seem determined to exploit deaths for cheap political point-scoring with a view to underming the protection of our natural heritage

        • grumpy 6.1.1.1

          No, I am commenting on this post by MartyG which seems to be doing all you claim . Much better for it never to have been written and wait for the inquiry.

          • Bright Red 6.1.1.1.1

            Marty’s pointing out that others are trying to score points off tragedy. there’s nothing in the post that seeks to lay blame with the Right. It’s a few Right nutbars trying to blame the Left for these deaths.

  7. Jenny 7

    Right wing, pro-business, opportunists like Fran O’Sullivan have no shame, their greed for the big returns from coal mining has blinded them, so much, that they stray, even from the bounds of common decency.

    Last Thursday prior to O’Sullivan’s dispicable exploitation of this tragedy to push her pro-mining political agenda. Other opportunists were already laying the groundwork to exploit these mens deaths to greatly expand coal mining.

    As I said then, “Unfortunately, I think we can expect to see a lot more of this sort of thing in the coming weeks and months.”

    Sadly, I did not have to wait long to be proved right.

  8. I think it’s bizarre and lamely comical how the likes of suits such as Matthew Hooton are suddenly experts on mining and qualified to discuss the merits of techniques…and your relationship to manual labour is…what, exactly?

  9. ghostwhowalksnz 9

    In West Virginia they do blow the tops off mountains so they can ‘open cast’ the coal beneath.

    The valleys around are buried by the overburden. I think the economics of it require the coal seam to be much much thicker than 7m.

    And of course they dont do it in national parks.

  10. Micheal James 10

    Who or what is a MartyG? I can put a face to the names of Matthew Hooton, Whaleoil, Paul Holmes & Fran O’Sullivan, they are prepared to stand by their commentary. What about you MartyG?

    [Marty G is Marty G. Do you need a face in order to engage with the debate? See our about page. — r0b]

    • BLiP 10.1

      Michael, remind me – who wrote today’s New Zealand Fox News Herald editorial?

      • Micheal James 10.1.1

        BLiP, I don’t read the herald so don’t know what your question infers, but have a great day anyway.

        Bright Red, you are right, know one cares who I am, I’m just another pea in a sea of vomit. I can make a pretty poor argument at best of times, but at least I have fun trying.

    • Bright Red 10.2

      who’s Micheal James? Wait, who cares?

      It’s the quality of your ideas that matters, not who you are.

    • Micheal James 10.3

      Hi r0b, Thanks, I read the about page & understand the reasons mentioned there, fair enough. I should bear that in mind when viewing editorial on this site & how much credibility to give the thoughts expressed here.
      To my mind yes, when someone makes public comments criticising other well known public figures for me it does add weight to those comments if the person making them isn’t anonymous. Otherwise the term chickenshit comes to mind.
      All the best, Mike.

      [lprent: You obviously don’t know the limits of the law or the difficulties of pursuing a libel action against anyone when they are expressing an opinion about you.

      For instance I can easily say that I think you’re a total fuckwit (a rather meaningless phrase) without any fear of effective legal retribution (apart from nuisance suits) despite my ‘real’ identity being well known. The reason why is that I am not asserting a fact, I am expressing my opinion. If I’d asserted that it was well known that someone did quite specific acts of bestiality and this was not sustainable, then that would be libel.

      I’ve happily expressed my opinion about many public figures, both political and non-political in the past in language that is meant to be deeply damaging to the recipient because I’m pissed off about something. So have many of the authors and commentators here. But it is always clearly our personal opinions and is usually reasonably well substantiated with fact.

      Occasionally we do get people leaving libel comments. The moderators keep track of anything that is over the edge and it gets purged as fast as we see it and the perpetrator is bounced and banned. On a very few occasions we’ve missed a comment, but we will examine them if people request it, and have killed comments that are over the edge. We do not allow this site to be used for clear libel.

      People if they are really concerned do have the option of trying to bring an action against the trust that runs the site. But if we don’t think that the action is justified we will defend against the action as being a nuisance suit. We’ve made the site reasonably difficult to take down using nuisance actions so they are rather pointless. But the point is that we will defend against actions that we think are stupid and unsustainable in a court. This makes us no different to a newspaper with their anonymous editorials.

      As far as I’m concerned, the main reason that we get wafflers like yourself bleating on about the pseudonymous nature of our writers and commentators is because it makes it easier for bullies to try to silence our voices using means that ignore any legal limits of free speech – see the about. Bearing in mind the numbers of threats that we’ve received over the years this is where you should look for the gutless who are incapable of arguing and prefer to bully extra-legally.

      Are you one of them? ]

      • Armchair Critic 10.3.1

        Otherwise the term chickenshit comes to mind.
        Only valid if you assume that people who comment here under pseudonyms do not make their views known using there real name elsewhere. In my case I make my thoughts known using my real name and identity in other forums, usually much more directly than what I express here. I’m sure others here do the same.

      • r0b 10.3.2

        Hi “Michael”. We’re pseudomymous — pen names — like Mark Twain, C S Forester, George Orwell, Joseph Conrad, and many other writers. Or I guess we could go for anonymous, like editorial writers for major newspapers, the listener, and so on.

        I guess the point is that we’re happy to be chickenshit in good company. Especially if the alternative is desperately pursuing some form of sad micro-celebtrity, as some bloggers do.

        Toodle pip, r0b

      • Pascal's bookie 10.3.3

        To my mind yes, when someone makes public comments criticising other well known public figures for me it does add weight to those comments if the person making them isn’t anonymous. Otherwise the term chickenshit comes to mind

        How does that work exactly? Is there a logic there at all? If there is, it is hiding very well.

        If a person is ‘chickenshit’ but makes a very good argument, would you give it less weight than a transparently bullshit argument that has a name attached?

        If you couldn’t decide on an issue based on the quality of argument, would you really just agree with the argument that happened to have a name attached? Why?

        That seems like a singularly stupid thing to do.

        And anonymous /= pseudonymous.

        Pseudonyms maintain an identity. Anonymity strips all identity away. A small point, but an important one.

        All the best with trying to engage, though you might find you will need to do more than just post under a realistic sounding handle in order to get respect.

    • Marty G 10.4

      As Irish would say, I’m Marty, who are you?

  11. Micheal James 11

    AC that’s a very good point. I hadn’t considered it. If MARTY G ‘s identity is commonly known by his/hers peers & by the people criticised then that’s a different story.

  12. vto 12

    The answer to this bullshit issue is really rather quite simple if a few fools think DOC is responsible for the Pike River tragedy to any extent… No more mining whatsoever on DOC land.

    Voila.

    Done and dusted.

  13. millsy 13

    The price of everything and the value of nothing.

    I bet Hooten, O’Sullivan and blubberboy used to enjoy our pristine national park system amd our clean rivers when they were kids – now they want to deprive their kids of them, for the sake of a few bucks.

    I am not anti-mining, not by a long shot, but with advances and technology we can do it without turning the pristine beauty of our National park system in to a steaming pile of toxic sludge, just to make money.

    I would love the likes of grumpy to travel out the back of Te Aroha to that old mine site, which is one of the most toxic places in the country – with a tailings dam, full of toxic crap that is so toxic, there is a layer of sediment on top.

    Come on rightwingers, are you going to put the Southern Alps through the grinder to look for the coal underneath?

    • grumpy 13.1

      Hi millsy,

      I’ll back my experience in the backblocks of the Coast with anyone’s. You cannot compare underground mining for coal with the crapheap that is Te Aroha. How many of the contributors to this discussion have visited the areas affected – have they been into the Paparoas? Large areas of the Coast are riddled with old mine workings, so much so that some areas are actually hazardous to trampers, hunters etc.
      Past mining is an intrinsic part of the West Coast culture (Shanty Town, Denniston, Brunner etc.) to the extent that DoC is restoring old workings as part of it’s “conservation” effort.
      It’s easy for Auckland and Wellington latte drinkers who like to see pretty pictures on their TV sets think that they can somehow impose their views on the people who have lived there for generations and to whom the “pretty pictures” represent their everyday life and their struggle to make a living for them and their families.
      It’s this urban greenie disconnect with reality that so offends Coasters and now there is a suggestion that those foreign values may have contributed to local fatalities, they will demand proper investigation and accountability if it is shown that urban “greenie” values have cost working Coasters their lives.

      • vto 13.1.1

        grumpy, you have a minor point that latte drinkers in the big smokes do not understand such areas as the Coast. However, similarly, Coast dwellers for example often lack an understanding of wider issues at play.

        Nonetheless, here’s a thing… I pissed off a well known west coast gold and coal miner recently when I was playing the devils advocate about his tailings and runoff and etc. I said that unlike farmers and miners I am not allowed to dump the rubbish from my business in the street, so why should they? These two sectors are very very very slow to realise that. These two sectors are too slow to realise a few other things too – probably comes from being sheltered behind their political power for such a number of decades. That shelter is no longer there – just reality. (little bit off subject)

        • grumpy 13.1.1.1

          Not too far off the subject vto. I agree that old style gold mining is no longer acceptable. My father was a Dredge Engineer on a gold dredge and my uncle Dredge Manager at Arahura, I think the Kaniere dredge was the last of that type. The Oceania site at Reefton is a huge contrast to that invasive method.
          Likewise, Pike River, Spring Creek and the smaller mines are nothing like the invasive Stockton project.
          You are correct that some “old style” miners have been slow to grasp the “new” reality but the types of obstruction of safety systems at Pike River that are being uncovered go way beyond ensuring minimum environmental impact.

          • Puddleglum 13.1.1.1.1

            Hi Grumpy. I appreciate the way you’ve engaged on this topic and you clearly know a lot about the realities of mining culture.

            I’d make one point though. Human beings create ‘cultures’ in just about any circumstances: The scavenging lifestyles on the rubbish dumps of major world cities have their own cultures, communities and norms. And if you think about human history, the range of circumstances in which human culture can emerge and maintain itself is a mixture of amazing and saddening.

            What upsets me, however, is how these various cultures will either be crushed or praised by people I call the ‘elite’ (and their ideological bedfellows who, I admit, I call ‘right wingers’) depending on how it fits with their current interests.

            At the moment, in New Zealand, West Coast mining culture is ‘defended’ by the right ‘against’ the ‘greenies’. Yet, in Britain in the 1980s, the right were not talking about the amazing mining culture and communities and how they had a right to go about their lives unmolested by those from the outside. No, those mining communites were systematically dismantled because, this time, they were in the way of ‘capital’ (for want of a better word). Where were all those right wing ‘friends of mining culture and communities’ then? Answer – putting the boot in to those very same mining communities.

            Here in New Zealand in the 1980s and 1990s there was little concern expressed by the economic and political right for the decimation of ‘cultures’ and communities. Instead, Roger Douglas and co. were telling everyone that they had to ‘adjust’, be ‘flexible’ put up with the ‘short term pain’ for ‘long term gain’. And, let’s be honest, if next year demand for coal plummeted and all the coal mines were shut down what would right wingers tell those ‘brave Coasters’ then? Would they ask that coal mining be heavily subsidised to keep Coasters doing the mining culture thing? Or tell them that they need to be ‘flexible’, to ‘diversify’, to ‘adjust’?

            History is full of examples where, when convenient, the elite will praise a culture; when inconvenient, they will crush, even eliminate it. (And I haven’t even mentioned the specifics of colonial expansion and how various cultures were ‘played’ then…)

            It stinks of hypocrisy, because that’s what it is. And that’s what gets me about this argument that right wingers are defending Coast mining culture and communities ‘against’ the greenies.

            • grumpy 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Ever get the feeling that “left” and “right”and “green” etc. are poor labels in defining a political position?

              There are many issues that transcend such easy labels.

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    2 hours 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
    16 hours 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
    17 hours 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
    1 day 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, ...
    1 day 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
    2 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
    2 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
    2 days 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 ...
    2 days 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 ...
    2 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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 ...
    3 days 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
    3 days 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 ...
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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
    4 days 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 ...
    4 days 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 ...
    4 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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 ...
    5 days 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
    5 days ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    6 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    7 days ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    7 days ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    7 days ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    1 week ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    1 week ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    1 week ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    1 week ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    1 week ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • How to survive 14 days of self-isolation
    So you’ve recently returned from overseas, come into contact with someone who tested positive, got a bit of a dry cough yourself or perhaps just want to self isolate for 14 days to avoid other people who might have COVID-19. Here are a few tips and tricks to help get ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Abortion Legislation Bill passes third reading
    Some fave speeches:     ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Leadership Matters – More Than Anything.
    Our Good Fortune: Precisely because she has never been an ideologue (she calls herself a “pragmatic idealist”) Jacinda Ardern has a political nimbleness and spontaneity which, when infused with her exceptional emotional intelligence, produces spectacular demonstrations of leadership. Jacinda's empathic political personality contrasts sharply with the less-than-sunny ways of her ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #11, 2020
    2 weeks ago
  • 68-51
    The Abortion Legislation Bill has just passed its third reading, 68-51. NZ First MPs bailed because their referendum amendment didn't pass, but there were plenty of MPs to provide a majority without them. The bill is a long way from perfect - most significantly, it subjects pregnant people who need ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The ‘herd immunity’ route to fighting coronavirus is unethical and potentially dangerous
    As most of the world tries to suppress the coronavirus spread, some countries are going it alone – trying to manage the pandemic through so-called “herd immunity”. Herd immunity means letting a large number of people catch a disease, and hence develop immunity to it, to stop the virus spreading. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Eight new COVID-19 cases today. It’s no surprise when you look at some numbers
    So, as I sit at home with a very, very slight headache (i.e. not at work when I would otherwise be so), the now familiar figure of Ashley Bloomfield reports eight new confirmed cases of COVID-19  including two in Waikato. A surprise, given that we had just twelve yesterday? No. ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • The WINZ Paradox versus the new COVID-19 Reality: Get real people, seriously…
    Many who advocated for, and voted for, the current Coalition – particularly those who voted Labour and the Green Party – expected to see a sea change in the reality of social services. A real, deep change of attitude, approach of process through which the system negotiates the difficult and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • The Air New Zealand bailout
    Stuff reports that the government is going to have to throw $2 - 3 billion at Air new Zealand to get it through the pandemic. Good. While international routes are basicly closed, Air New Zealand is a strategic asset which is vital to our tourism industry, not to mentioning airfreight. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why NZ’s tough coronavirus travel rules are crucial to protecting lives at home and across the Pac...
    New Zealand’s border restrictions will come with significant job and business losses in the tourism sector, both at home and in the Pacific. But the new travel rules are absolutely necessary to protect the health of New Zealanders and people right across Pacific Islands, because New Zealand is a gateway ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The tiniest of teeth
    Back in early 2018, as a shoddy legal tactic to try and avoid the prisoner voting ban being formally declared inconsistent with the BORA by the Supreme Court, Justice Minister Andrew Little floated the idea of greater legal protection for human rights. When the Supreme Court case didn't go the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • One simple, common factor to success against COVID-19
    Professor Philip Hill and Associate Professor James Ussher Most infectious diseases have an Achilles heel, the secret is to find it. The question is if we don’t have a drug or a vaccine for COVID-19, is there something else we can do to beat it? Some people estimate that, without ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks 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
    4 hours 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
    2 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
    2 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
    3 days 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
    3 days 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
    3 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
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    5 days ago
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    5 days ago
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    6 days ago
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  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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    7 days ago
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  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
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  • $100 million to redeploy workers
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    1 week ago
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    1 week ago
  • Stronger border measures to protect NZers from COVID-19
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    2 weeks ago
  • Action on indoor gatherings and events to protect public health
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    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealanders advised not to travel overseas
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    2 weeks ago