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The 4th estate & its pretenders

Written By: - Date published: 10:59 am, October 19th, 2014 - 63 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, brand key, democracy under attack, journalism, newspapers, same old national, telecommunications, uk politics - Tags:

The ideal of the news media as fourth estate is to provide a means for democratic debate about issues of social and political importance.  It is a means through which journalists can hold those with power to account.  Some journalists continue to try to fulfill such an aim as much as they are able.  However, the transnational corporate media, and those with links to political power, these days work more often to stifle democratic debate.

newscorp harmful if swallowed

Among those aiming to practice journalism in a way that contributes to, and enables democratic debate, while also very often speaking truth to power, are the following journalists: Nicky Hager, author of The Hollow Men: A study in the politics of deception (2006) and its sequel, Dirty Politics: How attack politics is poisoning New Zealand’s political environment (2014) ; Nick Davies of the Guardian newspaper, who broke the story of illegal hacking by Murdoch journalists in the UK, as outlined in his book Hack Attack: The inside story of how the truth caught up with Rupert Murdoch; and, as indicated in today’s Sunday Star Times, economic journalist, Rod Oram.

As the investigation into the Murdoch “hacking scandal” unfolded, we learned of the complicity between many powerful people working in Rupert Murdoch’s organisation, some members of the police force, and people in successive UK governments.

Hack Attack Nick Davies

A Guardian review of Davies’ book says this:

This book is important … because it is, … the best account we have of the phone-hacking scandal and the attendant police corruption and cover-ups. It is, as well, the story of modern Britain and how its standards and politics have been degraded by one man’s ruthless acquisition of power.

However, the aftermath to the Davies brilliant fourth estate investigation, is sobering.  As stated in the New York Times:

Still, Mr. Davies did not get the Hollywood ending he clearly wanted. … But despite his best efforts, Mr. Davies was unable to prove complicity within the highest echelons of Mr. Murdoch’s empire. Mr. Coulson was convicted, along with reporters and midlevel editors, but Rebekah Brooks, the most senior member of News International to be charged, was acquitted. Mr. Murdoch’s son James once at the center of the scandal, was never charged.

This is pretty much what Davies says in his interview in the latest Listening Post programme on Al Jazeera.  Davies says that while the phone hacking has stopped, Murdoch and his style of news journalism, along with the abuse of power, and corruption of the democratic ideal, has not been defeated.

Davies also explains why the police were initially reluctant to investigate the alleged phone hacking.  He says that is was lower level police officers who took bribes from the Murdoch journalists.  The top brass in the police did not take money bribes not to investigate.  However, their failure to investigate was quite often due to,

a desire not to get into a nasty fight with this very very powerful news organisation. And if you look at that fear – it’s the same where government is concerned, as where the police is concerned – part of it is individual fear, that this newspaper might come in and expose the sex lives of the senior officers.  And then apart from that there’s is an organisational fear, that if these newspapers turn against us they can make every day a crisis, they can just destabilise us…

Davies calls the combination of this fear mongering results in “passive power”, whereby people don’t need to say to the police to back off.  The police preempt this, and don’t attempt to take on such power.

Something like such “passive power” could explain why police have been relatively quick to do an extensive search of Nicky Hager’s home, while failing to do anything like that in response to Cameron Slater’s use of the illegally obtained hard drive of Blomfield (see Russell Brown’s post on this).  As outlined in Dirty Politics, the Slater-Lusk-Ede smear machine used threats of disclosures of people’s private activities and sexual lives to get them to do their bidding.

Key-Slater-Farrar

Rod Oram, in today’s Sunday Star Times explains how such “Dirty Politics” adds to the already suppressive nature of reporting in a small society like that of NZ. Oram begins:

Is free and rigorous debate increasingly suppressed in New Zealand?

No, says, John Roughan, John Key’s biographer and a New Zealand Herald editorial writer, in his article available at http://bit.ly/Roughan

Yes, says, Nicky Hager, investigative journalist. He laid out chapter and verse in a recent article in the UK’s Guardian (http://bit.ly/Hager), as he did in his book Dirty Politics. His piece triggered Roughan’s blistering response.

I say yes.  Suppression of evidence, ideas and debate, in ways subtle and now increasingly brutal, is my experience as a business journalist in New Zealand. It is no consolation we are just a micro example of an accelerating trend worldwide.

Oram gives to examples from his work last week, in which, what was in the past, the

 ruthless exercise of power by a few to create a self-serving orthodoxy, has mutated into a virulent attack on trust, respect and social cohesion – for even greater self-benefit.

The examples have to do with health professionals being viciously attacked by the likes of Cameron Slater and Carrick Graham.  Oram ends his column with a refusal to be deterred from critical journalism by those who would undermine democratic debate and honest investigations:

Rod-Oram

 I’m not giving up on any of that…ever.

I say to the Slaters, Grahams, Odgers, Farrars, Edes, Lusks, Williamses, Collinses and all their ilk, you are destroying some good people and good society.

 

63 comments on “The 4th estate & its pretenders”

  1. Tautoko Mangō Mata 1

    Excellent post, Karol. Decisions which are good for NZ and NZers need to be made using ALL of the evidence available. We have excellent scientists and academics doing research. We have, unfortunately, a government which has an agenda to enrich its voting base immediately regardless of the future environmental or social damage caused by its policies. Because of the short term thinking, future generations are going to be left with the costs of dealing with the environmental, health and social problems.
    This is robbing the kids piggybank. Since much of the research inconveniently points out these future pitfalls, National deliberately uses their second tier henchmen to close down debate.
    We must fight tooth and nail against this.
    National Government- short term asset strippers, long term disaster

  2. blue leopard 2

    This really shows the problem with basing the entire society on the drive of self interest and the drive for profit.

    So many important issues are falling through the large and gaping holes created by this erroneous principle.

    Nothing matters anymore other than profit.

    Out of profit being the only thing that is important, there is so much moral hazard occurring, being unethical has become the norm.

  3. cogito 3

    Latest re Jason Ede: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/10634251/Political-influence-denied-in-Edes-work

    Quote:
    National’s former “black ops” specialist Jason Ede has resurfaced working for a listed telecommunications company with strong personal links to senior National Party figures.
    Teamtalk managing director David Ware confirmed Ede, a central figure in Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics, had been hired as a contractor, but denied any political influence in the move.

    “We don’t do politics. We sell telecommunications services,” Ware said. “I am perfectly comfortable using him. I think he’s a great guy.”

    Ware’s wife Belinda Milnes is an adviser to Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett, having quit this week as Families Commissioner, and her sister is Communications Minister Amy Adams.

    Former National deputy leader Roger Sowry is the independent chair of Teamtalk. Prime Minister John Key’s Official Information Act gatekeeper Sarah Boyle, who worked alongside Ede, is listed as holding shares in Teamtalk worth about $300,000. Ware said she was trustee of his family trust and also godmother to Ware and Milne’s daughters.
    …………
    Ware said the move to hire Ede was not political. “The decision to hire him was mine and mine alone – or to contract him I should say. I can 100 per cent tell you it was not a political decision.”
    End quote.

    Pull the other one!

  4. Alternatively you could visit sites such as mine and Ben Vidgen’s Postman facebook page for some much needed counterweight to the MSM crap.

    • Manuka - Ancient Order of Rawsharks 4.1

      Thanks! 2014 – the year I find that we in NZ have our own homegrown news & discussion sites. Used to think we had to look o/s to such as Common Dreams, AlterNet, and The Guardian’s cif.

  5. The Dirty Politics Hager exposed was to do with using social media back channels to the fuel attacks on the opposition via the Corporate Media Monopoly.
    It, like the other examples you refer to have exposed the CMM as beyond redemption.
    Those who suppress freedom of speech will not change. They can be exposed and condemned but they will not stop. And we certainly shouldn’t expect nor invite the state to stop them, or that the CMM can be reformed. They all have a stake in perpetuating the rotten capitalist system.
    The CMM is the reflex of capitalis in crisis to suppress all political opposition as its inequality and oppression becomes indefensible. What some US writers call ‘full spectrum dominance’.
    The Left has to outflank the right and boycott the CMM (which doesn’t stop us congratulating it when justified) and build an alternative, independent media.
    The Corporate Media Monopoly has to be broken.
    The voices of people like Oram and de Boni in the local media are effectively tokenised unless backed up by a healthy independent media.
    Its obvious that the political site that carries most weight with political activists today is the internet (indynet) as the platform for social media.
    This is why the Left was fooled by Key into accepting his narrative that Dirty Politics was a ‘left conspiracy led by Dotcom’ as a diversion from the election.
    It should have made that THE election issue.
    I would like to see our positive energy going into building and defending freedom of speech in an alternate, independent media.

  6. Tracey 6

    Thanks for this Karol.

    It is a modern world form of propaganda. Too many people think propaganda is just used by evil regimes, likening it to the iron curtain soviet union and Hitler etc. By its nature it is a secret action and so hard to pin down and easier to veil.

    The Institute for Propaganda Analysis, inspired by Harold Lasswell” defined propaganda as “the expression of opinions or actions carried out deliberately by individuals or groups with a view to influencing the opinions or actions of other individuals or groups for predetermined ends and through psychological manipulations”

    In fact propaganda is a strategy used extensively in the business world and its more overt personna is “marketing” where the “hot buttons” etc are used to create a want for something not needed and never before desired with a certain end in mind (increased consumption and profit). So demand is created.

    The West, and the USA in particular, have been proponents of slick propaganda for some time. McCartyism was an example but there have become more subtle ways to use this device inmore recent decades.

    Jaques Ellul wrote in the 60’s, in his Formation of Men’s Attitudes” of the way it is used and works. The book contains Ellul’s theories about the nature of propaganda to adapt the individual to a society, to a living standard and to an activity aiming to make the individual serve and conform. The work concerns propaganda as an inner control over an individual by a social force.

    ” The aim of modern propaganda is no longer to modify ideas, but to provoke action. It is no longer to change adherence to a doctrine, but to make the individual cling irrationally to a process of action. It is no longer to transform an opinion but to arouse an active and mythical belief.” j Ellul

    And for those who say the boardroom stays out of the editorial room consider this (below) and ask yourself why anything would have changed?

    “Rupert Murdoch reportedly instructed his editors to “kill Whitlam” before the fall of the Labor government in 1975.

    Fairfax media has reported that the News Corporation chief’s directive regarding former Labor leader Gough Whitlam is revealed in a 1975 diplomatic report from the US.

    The telegram from the US consul-general in Melbourne, Robert Brand, reported to the state department that “Rupert Murdoch has issued [a] confidential instruction to editors of newspapers he controls to ‘Kill Whitlam’ “.

    Brand made it clear that the words “kill Whitlam” were used in a political context and not as a physical threat, Fairfax says.

    Brand noted that Murdoch had previously supported Whitlam’s election but his publishing empire turned against the leader.

    “If Murdoch attack directed against Whitlam personally this could presage hard times for prime minister; but if against Labor government would be dire news for party,” the telegram reportedly said.

    The directive came 10 months before Whitlam’s dismissal by the governor general.

    Comment was being sought from News Corp Australia.”

    Jaques Ellulmakes many observations which I believe hold equally true today, including

    “”Differences in political regimes matter little; differences in social levels are more important; and most important is national self-awareness. Propaganda is a good deal less the political weapon of a regime (it is that also) than the effect of a technological society that embraces the entire man and tends to be a completely integrated society. Propaganda stops man from feeling that things in society are oppressive and persuades him to submit with good grace.

    “Political Propaganda involves techniques of influence employed by a government, a party, an administration, or a pressure group with the intention of changing the behavior of the public. The themes and objectives of this type of propaganda are of a political nature. The goals are determined by the government, party, administration, or pressure group. The methods of political propaganda are calculated in a precise manner and its main criteria is to disseminate an ideology for the very purpose of making various political acts acceptable to the people.[12] There are two forms of political propaganda, tactical and strategic. Tactical political propaganda seeks to obtain immediate results within a given framework. Strategic political propaganda is not concerned with speed but rather it establishes the general line, the array of arguments, and the staging of campaigns.”

    • karol 6.1

      Thanks for these reports, Tracey.

      I’m not sure why you don’t put in links to the articles you quote.

      This is the one for the Whitlam article, which is indeed, food for thought.

    • Colonial Rawshark 6.2

      Thank you very much for this Tracey. The simple truth is – anglosaxon countries are amongst the most propagandised in the world. And western liberal intellectuals are a prime target for propaganda. Buying into wars, buying into neoliberalism, buying into financialisation, etc. And indeed, often arguing for all of these things eloquently and persuasively.

      And this process has been going on for a very long time.

      Consider the book “Public Opinion” by Walter Lippmann, source of the famous phrase “manufacturing consent”:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Opinion_(book)#The_manufacture_of_consent

      The political élite are members of the class of people who are incapable of accurately understanding, by themselves, the complex “unseen environment” wherein the public affairs of the modern state occur; thus, Lippmann proposes that a professional, “specialized class” collect and analyze data, and present their conclusions to the society’s decision makers, who, in their turn, use the “art of persuasion” to inform the public about the decisions and circumstances affecting them.[1]

      • Tracey 6.2.1

        cv

        ellul makes the comment that academics and well educated are great for propaganda cos they hoover up info and then cant wait to share it…

        readin ritin rithmetic very important in propaganda.

        I have read a bit of chomsky too… thanks to you and sword for the reference.

        • karol 6.2.1.1

          The academic world have been subjected to “neoliberal” forces like everywhere else. It’s a highly competitive arena, with its ‘publish or perish’ ethos.

          However, some within that world do remain highly critical in their approach – Chomsky, for instance.

          The corporate ethos has captured politics and the media. It’s seen in their use of propaganda techniques in both business and political marketing – and in the tie up between the Slaters and Carrick Grahams of this world.

          • greywarshark 6.2.1.1.1

            Wayne Brittenden Counterpoint 17 min this morning on Radionz on academics and being muzzled – academic freedom.
            http://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/player/20153947

            • Rodel 6.2.1.1.1.1

              greywarshark- Wayne Brittenden this morning was brilliant.
              I’m getting a bit edgy about John Keys scientific advisory puppy Gluckman…
              Is he part of a plan to restrict academic freedom?
              All power to Canterbury uni’s Professor Hineman (not sure of the spelling) for his stance.

              People who would have been stifled if academic freedom had been curtailed as it seems it may be in NZ if Peter Gluckman has his way include Einstein, Linus Pauling and Noam Chomsky and last but not least Mike joy in NZ.
              The sloganistic “Scientific excellence “ is a nonsense .
              John Key in some interview somewhere cheerfully claiming that he could find plenty of scientists who disagreed with Mike Joy showed a pitiful misunderstanding of the concept of science and academic freedom. I suspect the 47%ers who voted National wouldn’t grasp the concept either.

              Mind you I think NZ university academics have been wimps for the last decade or so, afraid to speak out because they effectively have CEO corporate types managing their budgets and their futures.

              • greywarshark

                Rodel
                It’s an effective way of silencing people, if they think their jobs and lives are likely to be compromised. One might be staunch, but two or more with combined interests means reluctance to risk that.

            • Ergo Robertina 6.2.1.1.1.2

              The Brittenden package was excellent, and complements what Oram said about NZ’s lack of a contest of ideas. The code of conduct for scientists is a dodgy concept in itself, but particularly dangerous in NZ because of the size of the academic community and vulnerability to ideological thuggery.

          • Tracey 6.2.1.1.2

            the point was that academics gobble up information and disseminate it. being highly literate enables propaganda.

            national use blogs like slater and farrars to manipulate the reader… to spread their disinformation … and to deliberately deceive.

            red alert seemed to be set up to provide a bridge between lp and readers.

            quite different MO

            once the media buy into the illegitimate strategy of slater et al… wittingly or unwittingly they become the master disseminators. circle complete.

    • swordfish 7.1

      Yep, what the dear old NZ MSM do best: (1) Mindless Infotainment, (2) Selling readers/viewers to advertisers and (3) holding the Opposition to account.

      One detects just a slight whiff of One Party State now and then.

    • karol 7.2

      I think it’s no coincidence that those guys have risen in prominence under Key’s watch, while the last remnants of public service broadcasting have been gradually whittled away.

  7. swordfish 8

    Here are the basics of the Manufacturing Consent thesis put forward by Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman (just the Wikipedia overview):

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

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

  8. small thing 9

    “I say to the Slaters, Grahams, Odgers, Farrars, Edes, Lusks, Williamses, Collinses and all their ilk, you are destroying some good people and good society”. quote-Rod Oram

    You could add our PM to that as well
    Sad to realize that this PM is making sure that those who have any age on him become as powerless as possible to affect his position of arrogant self entitlement and being no.1 and if they try they will have his jackals and hyenas on their tail
    Thankfully he will not be able to escape the inevitable that all who indulge absolute power get in the end -exposed-
    The thing is for all good people be prepared to do what will have to be done
    Get a moral compass that works and like all partnerships recognise when a divorce is the only way out and get some laws that stop politicians being able to do what has been done this year
    Money does not save everyone
    We all DIE eventually and the destruction of the values that many good people have fought and worked to uphold have been shockingly abused and destroyed by this useless govt that has only served the privileged in the last six years and fooled us into thinking that we are progressing
    Have a really good look at what we have lost, theres fuckin heaps
    that will never get back
    Key is a treasonist arsehole like Douglas Prebble Banks Bolger Shipley Brash and the mother of all mutha fuckers Richardson and thats just in the last 30yrs
    Fives EYES or 50 thousands lies their both the same

    • whateva next? 9.1

      “Money does not save everyone” and is the root of all evil. Hear Hear to all of the posts above and reassured we can keep raising people’s consciousness, so they know we do not have to live like this.
      Cheers Karol and Rod Oram today, and all the others who are raising these questions for all of us.

      • Tracey 9.1.1

        the LOVE of money is the root of all evil

        • whateva next? 9.1.1.1

          stand corrected

        • Extract from 1 Timothy 6 (ESV):

          But godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils.

          • Colonial Rawshark 9.1.1.2.1

            yep the love of money instead of the love of people.

            • JonL 9.1.1.2.1.1

              “I say to the Slaters, Grahams, Odgers, Farrars, Edes, Lusks, Williamses, Collinses and all their ilk, you are destroying some good people and good society.”
              The worrying thing is – they don’t care. I would say they get a perverse pleasure out of the whole exercise, running crap for their masters.

    • Paul 9.2

      I think Oram wrote ‘and their ilk’ to cover Key.

  9. OK Karol.

    Let’s say that everything you have said is true and that the institutions by which regular people are supposed to hold power to account no longer do so.

    Now what?

    There’s no use complaining, since complaints do nothing. What are people supposed to do when the institutions that hold power to account have been subordinated by those in power?

    • Colonial Rawshark 10.1

      It is very difficult. However there are plenty of examples overseas of what can be done, from both historical and very recent examples.

      • Tom Jackson 10.1.1

        OK. Can you point some out?

        • Colonial Rawshark 10.1.1.1

          Just look at Occupy HK. Look at the protestors who have been arrested in Pennsylvania Avenue last few years. Look at the the whistleblowers who are being persecuted.

          I mean, just open your eyes and look.

    • karol 10.2

      We keep pointing it out. We also keep trying to provide alternative analysis and critiques where and when we can. We highlight when journalists or media organisations do fulfill the fourth estate ideal.

      And we keep asking politicians for a renewed public service media.

      It’s in the policies for Labour and the Greens.

      • Tom Jackson 10.2.1

        We keep pointing it out. We also keep trying to provide alternative analysis and critiques where and when we can. We highlight when journalists or media organisations do fulfill the fourth estate ideal.

        And given that the means of disseminating such information to the public (i.e. the popular media) are entirely controlled by the opposition, this is supposed to work how?

        Look Karol, I like reading your posts and you seem like a really nice and smart person, but what you suggest appears to me to be flogging a dead horse. Can you think of any other alternatives?

        • karol 10.2.1.1

          The options are limited. Why not you come up with some ideas? Why leave it to everyone else?

          The Campaign for Better Broadcasting has been campaigning, The Daily Blog has tried to cross over to get more visibility. Scoop aims to present more info etc.

          There were community TV and radio options but they have been gradually taken away from us.

          So what do you want? That we just give up because there is no brilliant option readily available?

        • Occupy HK, Occupy Wall St, Arab Spring are all about giving a voice to the voiceless and downtrodden.

          Some formerly homeless blokes have started an inner city radio station for the homeless.

          Many churches continue to speak for the poor and weak, in the face of relentless prejudice and vilification.

          There is a huge global shift away from monolithic MSM media sources into more fragmented online and community based services.

          Most people ignore political news and avoid advertising. Eventually all lies will be exposed. The truth will set us free.

          • karol 10.2.1.2.1

            Some good points there, ropata.

            Getting cut through into the MSM in any concerted and regular way would take financial backing and a team with diverse skills time to commit to it full time.

            And even then, the corporate media will not allow any treat to its infotainment dominance.

            The MSM are also stretched these days to enable the kind of in-depth research and presentation required of a truly critical media.

            For us amateurs, there may be some gain in diverse small initiatives supporting and promoting each other – the strength in the collective.

            • ropata mako shark 10.2.1.2.1.1

              Agreed Karol. I think most Kiwis are good people, but have been suckered by Key (the wall street wolf in sheep’s clothing) and his chummy persona.

              It can’t last forever.

          • Tom Jackson 10.2.1.2.2

            There is a huge global shift away from monolithic MSM media sources into more fragmented online and community based services.

            Yes there is, but the right seem way ahead of everyone else when it comes to utilising such media.

          • Tom Jackson 10.2.1.2.3

            Occupy Wall St is an example of uselessness. It didn’t really go anywhere because the protestors had no leverage. A large union winning a strike does infinitely more to increase the power of the left than pitching tents in a public park.

            Example: National seems hell bent on going after the teachers, who have the most powerful union in NZ (after all, they are responsible for the majority of childcare, without which many people could not work). If the teachers can not only win the dispute but humiliate the government, it would be a start.

            • ropata mako shark 10.2.1.2.3.1

              I am beginning to think that the only “example of uselessness” around here is your defeatist attitude.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                There’s nothing defeatist about calling for a demonstration of people power, and let’s face it, unions have a track record and Occupy has a mumble mumble what’s that smell?

                • whateva next?

                  “It’s easy to become cynical, he says: “But I have identified cynicism as our greatest enemy, so I do my best to curb it . . . we all get bitter and angry about what happens. But you’ve got to guard against it, because that’s what Rupert Murdoch wants . . . [he] wants us to think badly of everyone else.”
                  As Billy Bragg reminds us

        • Colonial Rawshark 10.2.1.3

          You’re sounding like a merchant of hopelessness. Mate, perhaps you should just rejoin the ranks of the establishment, maybe you’re not really cut out to be operating outside the corporate power structure.

  10. Saarbo 11

    Thanks Karol.

    Oram is in a class of his own in NZ print journalism…

  11. nogodsnomasters 12

    Tom Jackson raises perfectly reasonable points around ‘our’ failures.

    The media in NZ is clearly sycophantic, but is that really as much of a problem as you think it is? Everyone who has ever had a job understands the hierarchical class divided nature of society because it is reflected perfectly at work. The tone ’round here’ borders on elitist a little too often imo. The working class dont need preaching to about who to vote for – we’ve been doing it for a hundred years – didnt get fuck all done. Any and all gains workers have been won at the front lines of the class struggle. The ballot box just handed away our power to others to write down our wins so they can start taking them back off of us. Remember Lange?

    Also what makes all you leftists (antagonism intended) think the state has a choice in what it does? e.g. ‘a government which has an agenda to enrich its voting base ‘ – Karol. Everyone round here are clearly good people great intentions. But I feel you fail to understand what the state is, it first and foremost exists to facilitate capitalism, it will defend the system to its death (or ours – as evidenced by countless workers lives lost struggling for freedom). Even if we elected the most radical progressive green whatever party – it would still have to put the needs of the economy ahead of human life, and as capital struggles to find sources of profit your super party would sell out the working class and environment to find an injection of value to keep the system alive exactly the same as any far right party you would.

    Dirty politics is just a symptom of the disease not the disease its self. The state will never set us free because it was created to maintain our slavery – this is where the media/propaganda comes in. If or when this fails, the more heavy handed repressive apparatus of the ruling class comes out, with guns if need be. There is nothing the state wont do, it’s the most violent institution in history.

    So what is the alternative? A class based movement to re-organise society to meet the needs of all sounds good, also sounds crazy and maybe it will never happen. In which case maybe there is no alternative? Maybe capital will bury us all.

  12. greywarshark 13

    Great analysis, but the downside becomes more of a possibility the more that possible positive outcomes could talked down. So think about ways to get people voting and get people educating themselves on the problems and taking the country’s economic and social health to their hearts.

    There is more than one version of capitalism. It could work for us, but we need to make change in our political workers, and make sure that they accept they are workers for the polity. Government have to steer the capitalist vehicle the way it wants it to go, not just let the world take over. The route we are taking is away from our comfort zone to a totally unsatisfactory place.

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    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 ...
    14 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
    2 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, ...
    2 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
    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
    3 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 ...
    3 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 ...
    3 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
    4 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 ...
    4 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
    4 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
    5 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 ...
    5 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 ...
    5 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
    6 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
    6 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 ...
    6 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
    6 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
    7 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 ...
    7 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
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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

  • 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
    6 hours 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
    16 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
    3 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
    4 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
    5 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
    5 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
    5 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
    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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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    5 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
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    5 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
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    5 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
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    6 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
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    6 days ago
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    7 days ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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    1 week ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
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    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
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    1 week ago
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
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    1 week ago
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    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
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    1 week ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
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    1 week ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
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    1 week ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
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    1 week ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
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    1 week ago
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    1 week ago
  • $100 million to redeploy workers
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    2 weeks ago
  • More support for wood processing
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    2 weeks ago
  • Govt steps in to protect Air New Zealand
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    2 weeks 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