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The Herald creates a panic and Trump says Coronavirus is a hoax

Written By: - Date published: 9:37 am, March 1st, 2020 - 65 comments
Categories: Donald Trump, health, making shit up, Media, spin, us politics, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

Yesterday’s Herald front page was pretty appalling.

Some evidence of increased supermarket activity on Friday night was amplified into a Saturday morning front page suggesting that we are in the middle of a pandemic.

The cause? One person identified as having Coronavirus.

One infected person does not justify such a headline.

Besides it might have been a $50 million lotto jackpot that justified the long queues.

The headline was excessive with photos of someone in a biohazard suit apparently taken in the UK and another picture of workers disinfecting a Teheran train station.

So yesterday there was a bit of a run on some supermarkets with bottled water and rice big purchase items. I am proud to say I saw no evidence of any such behaviour out west. Maybe westies are just more chilled.

One aspect which did cause me a great deal of despair was the response of the United States administration. Not only have continuous cuts to “unnecessary services” undermined the administration’s ability to respond, but horrendous medical costs will prevent many from seeking medical assistance and the administration is doing what it does and completely misrepresenting the reality of the situation.

See what happens when a serial liar intent on maintaining power at all costs occupies the White House? 

Trump has recently hit new lows by describing Coronavirus as a “hoax”.

From Martin Pengelly at the Guardian:

The president made his startling claim at a rally in North Charleston on Friday night. South Carolina holds its Democratic primary on Saturday, with Biden seeking a victory to re-establish his credentials against national frontrunner Bernie Sanders.

“The Democrats are politicising the coronavirus,” Trump said. “They’re politicising it. One of my people came up to me and said: ‘Mr President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia.’ That did not work out too well. They could not do it. They tried the impeachment hoax.

“This is their new hoax.”

If words have completely lost all meaning then Coronavirus can be described as a hoax.  Until then there is the thick end of 100,000 reported world wide infections and nearly 3,000 deaths to suggest otherwise.

And reports of infections on the west coast of people with no traceable link to imported infection cases suggests that the virus is now out in the wild and propagating.

In a further jaw dropping development Trump has appointed Vice President Mike Pence to lead the US Coronavirus response.  Pence once said publicly that smoking does not kill.  And when Governor of Indiana he refused to allow a needle exchange program from going ahead and created the worst HIV crisis in the State’s history despite being urged to do so by those who actually understand how virus propagation works.

Siouxsie Wiles at Spinoff thinks we should be reviewing our border arrangements with the US. This seems to me to be a very good idea.

[Title corrected to fix a typo but also to specify that I don’t think Trump thinks Coronavirus is a hoax – MS]

65 comments on “The Herald creates a panic and Trump says Coronavirus is a hoax”

  1. Andre 1

    Hard to imagine it, but Mike Huckabooboo's take on it tops even what's coming out of the White Dementia House …

    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/mike-huckabee-coronavirus-scenario-backfires_n_5e5a1197c5b6beedb4eb74fc

  2. RedLogix 2

    This is post is premised on a bullshit assertion that Trump is characterising the fact of this pandemic a 'hoax'. Manifestly he is not; even in the Guardian link provided Trump states:

    “We are doing everything in our power to keep the infection and those carrying the infection from entering the country. We have no choice,” Trump said at the Coliseum and Performing Arts Center. “Whether it’s the virus that we’re talking about, or the many other public health threats, the Democrat policy of open borders is a direct threat to the health and wellbeing of all Americans.”

    Unless words have completely lost all meaning, there is no possible sense in which Trump is saying that COVID 19 is not a real thing. 

    Christ Almighty if you are going to attack Trump you have more than ample material to work with, without making shit up and destroying your own credibility. 

    And yes he has a point about the effectively ‘open border’ policy that some Democrats have demanded.

    • WeTheBleeple 2.1

      Yeah well your fandom is showing.

      https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/donald-trump/trump-calls-coronavirus-democrats-new-hoax-n1145721

      [ The link you provided explicitly states that Trump is referring to the virus as the latest Dem Party hoax – exactly as RL has said. See my comment below for how I view peeps infecting threads with dog shit tribalism. And poop scoop your comments before posting in future – B]

      • RedLogix 2.1.1

        You point to my quote above and explain exactly where Trump is denying that coronavirus exists. Because this is the premise of MS's post as it is written.

        As for the 'fandom' dig … enough of the reductionist bullshit. 

        • Ed1 2.1.1.1

          Is there somehow an altrenative reality where politicians, or pretenders like Trump, are required to be consistent? He will tell an audience what they want to hear – can you recall a New Zealand politician who did the same?

      • WeTheBleeple 2.1.2

        Go fuck yourself. Calling it a hoax is calling it a hoax. Now enjoy your club, accuse me of tribalism you are pathetic. Go call for burning it all down again.

        [3 day ban for flaming – weka]

    • Sacha 2.2

      premised on a bullshit assertion that Trump is characterising the fact of this pandemic a 'hoax'

      https://lmgtfy.com/?q=trump+describing+coronavirus+as+hoax

    • Clive Macann 2.3

      I totally agree, Red Logix. 

      Accusing Trump of saying the virus is a Hoax is a very bad joke.

      Twisted his words to suit, is what I call it.

      • WeTheBleeple 2.3.1

        Then you too, are a blinkered admirer.

        • Incognito 2.3.1.1

          False dichotomy. Same with you fandom accusation @ 2.1.

          • WeTheBleeple 2.3.1.1.1

            If there is audio presented of Trump saying the thing they deny he said… that's pretty damn blinkered in my book. Only fanboys refuse to listen to evidence presented to them.

            • Incognito 2.3.1.1.1.1

              Well, if the commenters whom you’re accusing of being “blinkered”, “fanboys”, and “admirers” of Trump are truly that then there’s no point trying to debate anything with them in which case you’d better walk around them in a big circle and leave them alone. Moderators have no appetite for flame wars.

            • RedLogix 2.3.1.1.1.2

              I've listened to it. The meaning is plain, Trump is using the word 'hoax' in the context of the Democrat's failed Russiagate and Ukrainian impeachment efforts. Regardless of what you think the merits of these cases where (and they aren't simple) the fact remains that politically they failed, and Trump has repeatedly referred to them as 'hoaxes'. 

              So when the Dems attack him on the coronavirus front, he's reached for the same word to bat away the political attack. It's just twisting words to imply that he's denying the existence of the virus itself. And it reduces the left to the same ethical level as Trump … which is why I'm speaking out and making myself unpopular on this thread.

              • Bill

                I haven't listened to Trump saying whatever, but assume if he used the word "hoax" in relation to coronavirus, then he was referring to the pushing of panic.

                Time will tell if he was wise or stupid on that front.

                Now. Any tribal cunt want to suggest I'm a "fanboy" or whatever for saying that? Because I've got itchy ban fingers today…

                 

                • Incognito

                  Now. Any tribal cunt want to suggest I'm a "fanboy" or whatever for saying that? Because I've got itchy ban fingers today…

                  devil

                • RedLogix

                  On reflection I think that events are unsettling everyone, including me. I've got jobs that need doing today and I'm taking a break. 

                  Cheers

          • Macro 2.3.1.1.2

            I can't believe this!

            Here is Bernie, Biden, Buttigeig, Warren, et al, all calling out Trump for his stupid comment at – of all places – one of his rallies. The American public have a right to proper and efficient  Health Care in the face of what could well turn out to be a global pandemic. All Trump has done is to worry about his precious Stock market and his back pocket. The appointment of Pence, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and Trump’s top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, to oversee this outbreak speaks volumes as to where his true interests lie – and it is not with the American people. Calling it a hoax (whether literally or implied) particularly to the simpletons who form his base, is a very dangerous and stupid thing to do. But then that is what we should expect from the most corrupt individual who has ever disgraced the White House.

            BTW we now know what a "hoax" is:

            A “hoax“ is somethings very real that Trump does not want to deal with that he believes will hurt his chances for reelection and make him look incompetent.

             

            • joe90 2.3.1.1.2.1

              Concern trolls split hairs over tRump’s use of hoax rather than bagging tRump himself for putting the word hoax anywhere near a corona virus discussion. Weak.

    • mauī 2.4

      Well said. The way I see it Trump was telling his fans a bedtime story about a little boy called Pete Democrat who cried wolf one too many times 🙂

      • WeTheBleeple 2.4.1

        Why don't you just click a link and hear it – instead of offer 'the way you see it'. Cos you aint seeing straight.

        • mauī 2.4.1.1

          Oh very sorry.. next time I will make sure I go through the NBC aka "Ministry of Truth" fact checker before making any statements…

          • WeTheBleeple 2.4.1.1.1

            Just listen to the audio, no need for your fake news bullshit as well.

    • The Al1en 2.5

      Hmm, taking a 'you're making shit up' approach to an author and claiming their post is based on a bullshit assertion. That wouldn't end up well for 99.9% of people on here.  0.1% elite much?

      As it is, as well as hoax statements, it has also been reported (summarised on the latest Bill Maher show), Trump has stated the virus will just disappear, and there will be a vaccine available in short time. 

      Maybe the red necks and moronically conservative will change their opinions on the president when their loved ones are falling sick and dying, or when business shuts down and the lay offs start, and as over 50% of usians are screwed with an unexpected $400 bill, when their job related health care becomes worthless.

      If the corona virus was a vampire movie it would be called Reality Bites.

      • RedLogix 2.5.1

         taking a 'you're making shit up' approach to an author and claiming their post is based on a bullshit assertion.

        Mickey is a smart man who knows the difference between an idea and the person expressing the idea. This entire site and it's whole ethos is based on scrutinising ideas and confronting opinions. It's what we do.

        Attacking people is something I hardly ever do …. at least 99.9% of the time 🙂

      • joe90 2.5.2

        over 50% of usians are screwed with an unexpected $400 bill,

         

        And they're properly fucked, now.

        Last month, a man in Miami who returned from a work trip to China feeling sick went to a hospital to be tested for coronavirus. The test came back negative, but his high-deductible health insurance provider told him he would have to pay at least $1,400, the Miami Herald reported, and provide three years of medical records to prove that the flu he got was not related to a preexisting condition. Without producing the records, he would owe $3,270 for getting tested.

        https://theintercept.com/2020/02/28/american-evacuated-wuhan-us-billed-flight-mandatory-quarantine/

        • RedLogix 2.5.2.1

           And this is exactly the kind of story that will authentically politicise the US health care issue. It plays directly into Sander's hands, and Trump has every reason to fear that.

          Good link.

          • Andre 2.5.2.1.1

            It may indeed play into Sanders' hands. But he still has to grab it and work it for it to help him. He hasn't shown any signs of doing that so far.

        • dv 2.5.2.2

          How to make absolutely sure you willet a problem!!!!! 

    • mickysavage 2.6

      Thanks RL.

      Like everything else Trump says I have to parse it a couple of times.

      His choice of wording is his and obviously was intended to appeal to the counter culture conspiracy theorists that seem to flood to the republicans.

      It is hard to know what else to do with what he says.  And given that he lies daily it is not unreasonable to attribute to him a bizarre belief.

      If you want a suggestion about what is happening because of what he said there is this republican's tweet.

      https://twitter.com/JWrightforCA34/status/1231982872602398721

      • weka 2.6.1

        yes, the dog whistling, and also this is classic 45 tactic of saying something inflammatory that is also contradictory to what he is saying elsewhere. Lots of analysis out there that this is an intentional tactic to create chaos in the media and public as part of shifting the culture to authoritarianism. We write it off as stupidity at our peril. Politicised people I talk to in the US say it's simply exhausting because it is relentless in the context of all the other changes happening.

      • McFlock 2.6.2

        Dude's a bullshitter. He doesn't care about the existence, origin, extent, or anything else regarding coronavirus.

        He did his usual: he made the right sounds for the audience of the day and communicated unclearly enough that the people who are partial to conspiracies will lap it up, and the people who think he cares about the truth will bend over backwards to provide an interpretation that meets some test of reasonableness.

        The dude doesn't throw a dead cat on the table. He says "here are some nice flowers", takes a shit on the middle of the table, says "hmmmm they smell like cookies", and walks away. And people still act surprised.

  3. Sabine 3

    searching: Corona Virus is a hoax brings all of this 

    https://www.google.com/search?q=Corona+Virus+is+a+hoax&rlz=1C1CHBF_enNZ860NZ860&oq=Corona+Virus+is+a+hoax&aqs=chrome..69i57.6727j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/29/joe-biden-trump-coronavirus-hoax-claim

    “The Democrats are politicising the coronavirus,” Trump said. “They’re politicising it. One of my people came up to me and said: ‘Mr President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia.’ That did not work out too well. They could not do it. They tried the impeachment hoax.

    “This is their new hoax.”

    Washington state governor Jay Inslee confirmed the death on Saturday.

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/democratic-candidates-hit-trump-s-coronavirus-hoax-claim-n1145911

    Trump made the assertion during a rally in South Carolina Friday night, where he told the crowd Democrats have been "politicizing" the outbreak. He said he'd already endured Russia and the "impeachment hoax."

    "This is their new hoax," Trump continued, before assuring rallygoers that his administration is on top of the issue.

     

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/02/29/trump-coronavirus-press-conference-covid-19-updates/4913935002/

    Trump, who was surrounded by Pence, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and other members of the coronavirus task force, struck a more subdued tone at Saturday's news conference. He insisted he was not describing the virus as a "hoax" but that he was referring to his belief that Democrats are using the outbreak to try tohurt him politically.

    "This is very serious," he said.

    yeah, nah, he said what he said, he is still a bullshitter the size of a trump tower somewhere and there is ample audio and video clips of him saying to his fawning supporters that yes indeed the virus is a 'hoax'. 🙂 

    So to all his supperters, those that are out and proud and the closeted ones, do nothing. Its a hoax by the Democrats and the Democratic Party  to make him look bad, but in the meantime please do nothing, buy stocks, and pray that if you fall ill that you die quickly and silently as there will be no health care for you unless you can pay for it. 

    • WeTheBleeple 3.1

      Yep the soundbite's already out there. He's done exactly what he's accused the Democrats of doing, politicised the crisis. Then he spun on a dime because he has no moral fibre whatsoever, nor a spine.

  4. Anne 4

    Siouxsie Wiles at Spinoff thinks we should be reviewing our border arrangements with the US.

    Absolutely. That country is sick and getting sicker by the day.  Until such a time this period of evil and insanity in the US is past, NZ should step back from demonstrations of support and become self reliant. We have the tools and the people.

    We do not need America. That era has now gone forever.  In the age of the internet and cyber space generally, there are other places NZ can turn to for assistance if it ever became necessary. To continue to align ourselves with the US is to invite hostility towards our own country.

    • RedLogix 4.1

      In the age of the internet and cyber space generally, there are other places NZ can turn to for assistance if it ever became necessary. 

      Where? Australia who treats us like toilet paper? Is it the CCP you think will save us? The UK which can barely look after itself these days? Any other plausible options?

      Yes the USA is going through an ugly phase at present, and for many powerful geographic and economic reasons they're reverting back to their default isolationism.

      So yes they aren't ideal friends and there are many grounds to despair of some of what they do; their treatment of Assange stands out as just one signal example. But in a very unstable world you have to ask … well short of ideal yes, but compared to what? 

  5. Pingao 5

    Might want to fix the title Micky …  

    [Thanks now fixed. The problem with blogging in haste = MS]

  6. Sacha 6

    (NZ) grocery industry confident in its supply chain, while PM notes one part of the problem: https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/410699/coronavirus-retailers-confident-of-supply-chain-despite-panic-buying

    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern also warned people against panic buying, but blamed "irresponsible" headlines for causing "unnecessary" public anxiety.

  7. Poission 7

    Leaving aside the Herald scare lead ( nothing unusual as crisis sells papers),Wiles arguments seem a little askew.

    Hell, they haven’t even managed to properly sort out country-wide testing for the SARS-CoV-2 virus yet, despite the World Health Organization making all the protocols freely available.

    Both the US and Australia ignored WHO advice and enacted(correctly) cordon sanitaire rules with regards to travelers from China.

    The US and Australia said they would deny entry to all foreign visitors who had recently been in China, where the virus first emerged in December.

    Earlier, countries including Russia, Japan, Pakistan and Italy announced similar travel restrictions.

    But global health officials have advised against such measures.

    "Travel restrictions can cause more harm than good by hindering info-sharing, medical supply chains and harming economies," the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday.( 1/2/2020)

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-51338899

    Korea and Japan are the problematic risks to NZ,with the latter being significant due to the technocrats underplaying the underlying community infection,due to not testing,and insufficient testing resources (they could only test 250 per day with all their resources) .The second part of the Japanese problem is the automated response of the salary man to go to work at all cost.

     

    • RedLogix 7.1

      WHO seem completely off-base with this. Right now the best information we have is that this virus is about 2 -3 times more infectious than the seasonal flu and between 10 – 15 % of people who catch it will become seriously ill. 

      Unless we can slow down the rate of new cases with quarantines and social isolation the numbers will totally overwhelm our medical system. A system which is stretched to it's limits with the annual flu season already.

      I'm informed repeatedly by my sources that the CCP are covering up the real death toll in Wuhan substantially and have responded by literally shutting down large sections of their economy. Look to their actions, not their words.

  8. joe90 8

  9. joe90 9

    Of course tRump and his cronies are going to cash in.

  10. Ross 10

    Until then there is the thick end of 100,000 reported world wide infections and nearly 3,000 deaths to suggest otherwise.

    About 1.5 million people die from TB each year. 3000 is rather small in comparison and doesn’t deserve the attention it’s received.

    https://reliefweb.int/report/world/global-tuberculosis-report-2019

    [Fixed typo in e-mail address but it had already been approved]

    [Edit: turns out that typo has been in the system for over a year]

    • Incognito 10.1

      I have no idea what the point is of your comment but it is not constructive in any way and it feels more like one of your idiosyncratic derail attempts 🙁

      The Coronavirus pandemic is still in its early stages so it is way too early to make uninformed statements and unhelpful comparisons of death tolls like you did. There are measures to contain it and these are worthy of attention in order to be most effective. TB is caused by a bacterium, not a virus, is preventable (e.g. vaccination), and manageable/treatable. There are only a few hundred new cases in NZ each year.

      • Ross 10.1.1

        “it feels more like one of your idiosyncratic derail attempts”

        I haven’t attempted to derail anything. But facts can be troublesome.

        It’s a fact that 1.5 million die each year from TB. That apparently isn’t newsworthy. Why? Because those dying are in Africa and Asia? If coronavirus was confined to Asia and Africa I would doubt we would see much publicity about it.

         

        • Incognito 10.1.1.1

          Africa is the ‘lost’ continent.

          However, this post is not about Africa per se, and not about TB. If you want to comment on these two topics then OM is the place for you. Doing it under this post is a derail.

  11. Do real people pay the herald to post such rubbish and think they get value for money?

    They must be aucklanders.

    The editorial room must be giggling.

     

  12. Leighton 12

    Good article, but I can absolutely debunk the theory that Westies are more chill.  I was unfortunate enough to be travelling along Lincoln Road on Saturday morning and the Pak N Save was a chaotic mess of hysterical panic buying.  Maybe the levelheaded Westies frequent a different supermarket?  

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    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
    5 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
    6 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 ...
    7 days 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
    7 days 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
    1 week 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
  • National should isolate Simon Bridges
    The Coalition Governments $12.1 billion economic package to help combat the financial effects of COVID-19 was generally well received across the board, even amongst many business leaders who would normally be critical of a Labour led Government.However there was one glaringly obvious exception, Simon Bridges. The so-called leader of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How testing for Covid-19 works
    With confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand up to 12, many influential people are writing open letters and opinion pieces and doing press conferences asking why we aren’t pulling out all the stops and testing thousands of people a day like they are in South Korea. The thing is, ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    2 weeks ago
  • The COVID-19 package and the limits of capitalism
    by Daphna Whitmore The willingness to put human life before business shows that sometimes capitalism is capable of suspending its relentless drive for profit. For a short time it can behave differently. Flatten the curve is the public health message since COVID-19 suddenly overwhelmed the hospital system in northern Italy. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: COVID-19 Alert Level 4
    The COVID-19 situation in New Zealand is moving fast - and to avoid what we've seen overseas - the Government's response must be to move fast too. We're committed to keeping New Zealanders safe and well-informed every step of the way. ...
    2 days ago
  • SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency an...
    Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The scale of what we face right now is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Overcoming it is our common purpose. ...
    5 days ago
  • Winston Peters urging New Zealanders overseas to stay put
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging New Zealanders overseas to stay where they are amid the COVID-19 pandemic. "We are reaching a point where the best option for most New Zealanders offshore is to shelter in place, by preparing to safely stay where they are.” "This includes following the instructions ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealanders overseas encouraged to shelter in place
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters is encouraging the tens of thousands of New Zealanders travelling overseas to consider sheltering in place, in light of COVID-19.  “Since 18 March, we have been warning New Zealanders offshore that the window for flying ...
    6 days ago
  • Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare
    Ground-breaking law has passed that will decriminalise abortion and ensure women and pregnant people seeking abortions have compassionate healthcare. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Package supports Kiwis to put collective health first
    The Green Party says that the measures announced by the Government today will help families and businesses to prioritise our collective health and wellbeing in the response to COVID-19. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters: COVID-19 rescue package ‘more significant’ than any worldwide
    As New Zealanders brace for a global downturn due to Covid-19, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says his Coalition Government’s rescue package "more significant" than any other he's seen around the world. The Coalition is to reveal a multi-billion-dollar stimulus plan on Tuesday afternoon designed to cushion the economic blow ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Our response to COVID-19
    We know some people are feeling anxious about COVID-19. While the situation is serious, New Zealand has a world-class health system and we’re well-prepared to keep New Zealanders safe. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Demerit Points System’ will address youth crime
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill drawn from the ballot today seeks to overhaul the youth justice system by instigating a system of demerit points for offences committed by young offenders. “The ‘Youth Justice Demerit Point System’ will put an end to ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Investment in kingfish farming
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $6 million in a land-based aquaculture pilot to see whether yellowtail kingfish can be commercially farmed in Northland, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. A recirculating land-based aquaculture system will be built and operated ...
    3 weeks ago
  • 1BT grants for Northland planting
    Hon. Shane Jones, Minister for Forestry Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced two One Billion Trees programme grants of more than $1.18 million to help hapu and iwi in Northland restore whenua and moana. “Many communities around Aotearoa have benefited from One Billion Trees funding since the programme was launched ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand reaffirms support for Flight MH17 judicial process
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahead of the start of the criminal trial in the Netherlands on 9 March, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has reaffirmed the need to establish truth, accountability and justice for the downing of Flight MH17 ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF investment in green hydrogen
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister The Government is investing $19.9 million through the Provincial Growth Fund in a game-changing hydrogen energy facility in South Taranaki, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The development of alternative energy initiatives like this one is vital for the Taranaki region’s economy. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Coronavirus support for Pacific
    Rt. Hon. Winston Peters, Minister for Foreign Affairs Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand is partnering with countries in the Pacific to ensure they are prepared for, and able to respond to the global threat of Coronavirus (COVID-19). “There are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Green Party passes landmark law to ensure deaf and disabled voices heard equally in democracy
    Chlöe Swarbrick's Members Bill to support disabled general election candidates has passed into law. ...
    3 weeks 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
    2 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 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
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
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