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The teapot tapes and Andrea Vance’s emails

Written By: - Date published: 10:24 am, August 4th, 2013 - 44 comments
Categories: democracy under attack, john key - Tags: , ,

john banks key shonkey wonderland teapot party

The Herald this morning reported on how the police obtained a search warrant to seize Teapot taper Bradley Ambrose’s text messages.  Law Professor Bill Hodge described the obtaining the warrant as mind boggling.

As Hodge said:

Why in hell would they have those, for what investigatory purpose?

The police do have the capacity to get a warrant. I wouldn’t have thought this was a case that required text messages.

Lawyer Ron Mansfield elegantly described the problem.

I think the police access to communications is too freely given and not sufficiently monitored … [i]t’s time we reviewed this important issue of privacy as a community. We need to determine what is appropriate and how it is protected.

I would steadfastly fight to maintain my clients’ ability to communicate with me without fear of those communications being intercepted or obtained by the police. Clients have to be able to communicate freely and frankly.

How a warrant to seize texts belonging to a reporter including texts to and from his lawyer could be issued needs to be investigated because it is wrong at many levels.  Freedom of the press means that warrants should only be granted in the most extreme of situations for instance where human life is at stake, not where the Prime Minister is going to be politically embarassed.  Legal professional privilege was trashed.  This is a good lesson for lawyers that they should ensure that texts are innocuous in the extreme.  And you have to wonder about what prosecutorial benefit the texts would provide.

The episode jars with Andrea Vance’s and Peter Dunne’s treatment.  Faced with two similar situation Key acted in completely opposite ways.  Where it was his privacy being arguably breached he used the forces of the state to hound the person who had, innocently in my view, intercepted the information.  But where he faced political embarassment by leaks he chose to trash the rights of privacy of others in an attempt to find the leaker.

If the GCSB bill is passed the security forces will be able to pretty well as a matter of course engage in the sort of behaviour that Ambrose was alleged to have engaged in.

Key has stated that if we have nothing to fear we have nothing to hide.  What did he fear from the disclosure of the teapot tapes?

44 comments on “The teapot tapes and Andrea Vance’s emails”

  1. Paul 1

    I think you could add Jon Stephenson and the NZDF in this review of the govenrement’s disregard of democracy and surveillance of the media.

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Agreed Paul that the Stephenson case deserves much more analysis. I thought that Key’s comments about Stephenson of themselves bordered on the defamatory. The spying that occurred on him is another example of a very worrying trend involving the marginalisation and denigration of the independent media.

      • AmaKiwi 1.1.1

        I have just seen the John Stephenson movie about NZ in Afghanistan at the film festival.

        It is obvious why the NZ government wants this journalist discredited, silenced, ignored. He exposes spin lies and boldfaced lies.

        Spin Lie: Baniyan was NOT some sort of humanitarian rebuilding project. Some public buidlings were built, but Baniyan was the base for NZDF long range armed reconnaissance missions far into the surrounding countryside.

        Boldfaced Lies: The SAS in Kabul were “mentoring” Afghan soldiers. They followed them into battle but did not lead.

        According to evidence in the film, the SAS go on missions entirely by themselves. Americans give our SAS “targets.” Needless to say, said “targets” do not have long life expectancies.

  2. Craig Glen viper 2

    You are 100% correct Mickey if its good enough for the Prime Minister to have privacy over a cup of tea why is it not so for you and me?

  3. Phil 3

    As pointed out by Ms Coddington back in 2012 the founding principle of the ACT party appears somewhat at odds with the Banksters statement at the second reading of the bill that “Act and the people of Epsom support the bill”.
    Principle 1.
    that individuals are the rightful owners of their own lives and therefore have inherent rights and responsibilities; and
    that the proper purpose of government is to protect such rights and not to assume such responsibilities.
    Hmm, where all those Epsom Libertarians at these days?

    • paul andersen 3.1

      thats a bloody good question, where are the epsom libertarians? I suspect there never were any libertarians in epsom, only greedy property owners, looking to pull the ladder up after themselves.

      • Phil 3.1.1

        That remark sir, is close to scurrilous. The rotten borough of “Auckland Docks On The Hill” will always be a bastion of Libertarian Freedom, it’s just that the meaning of the word Freedom has a certain fluidity in Epsom.

        • AmaKiwi 3.1.1.1

          Remember Operation Iraqi Freedom? I always love it when certain Americans claim they are defending freedom. My freedom to be killed by your drones!

  4. Adrian 4

    A young man in a South Island centre put himself forward as standing for council elections, he’s had the usual hassles and struggles but wants to warn others about wrong options etc. And then last week the local Police released his Police record, a couple of Drunk in Publics, a cannabis conviction ( 6 in a car, a couple of joints on the floor, no money for a lawyer = 6 convictions ), result.. pulled out of the election.
    What fucking right have they to interfere in the Democratic Process in such a way.
    I have always told my kids… never, never trust the Police, they are worse than those they are supposed to be protecting us from.

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      So what sorts of convictions are you happy for an elected official to have, and what sorts of convictions are you unhappy for them to have?

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 4.1.1

        Anything that can attract a two-or-more year sentence seems about right to me.

        • Akldnut 4.1.1.1

          2 year sentence sounds about right, but would that be retrospective on today’s sentencing laws, under the 3 strike law he may still be in jail.

          • North 4.1.1.1.1

            Don’t think the 3 strike law applies to offending with a maximum sentence not exceeding 2 years. If that’s right the 3 strike scenario wouldn’t apply in any event.

      • Murray Olsen 4.1.2

        I’m happy for them to have any number and type of convictions. If they meet my other criteria, they get my vote. I get one vote, the same as everyone else.

        • Lanthanide 4.1.2.1

          So if they “meet [your] other criteria”, you’d happily vote for a serial killer? Weird.

          • Murray Olsen 4.1.2.1.1

            Serial killers are unlikely to be free in the community and standing for election, unless they’re from the SAS and did their killing officially. I wouldn’t vote for them in that case.

          • North 4.1.2.1.2

            Lanthanide……..there is such a thing as utterly illogical and risible extension. That’s the bullshit the right wing idiots get up to. Not you I’d hoped. Smoking dope to serial murder.

            Get off the “grass” !

            • Lanthanide 4.1.2.1.2.1

              I just found it rather strange that Murray doesn’t take into consideration criminal convictions, instead he’s letting the criminals self-select themselves out of the race.

      • Rhinocrates 4.1.3

        So what sorts of convictions are you happy for an elected official to have, and what sorts of convictions are you unhappy for them to have?

        I forget who said it, but “Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future.” I know people with serious criminal records whom I’d trust more in authority because they’ve learned from their lives the right lesson (“life’s tough, but we can make choices, and I know that other’s face challenges too”), unlike the likes of Key who have learned all the wrong lesson (“what you can get away with is right”).

        There’s someone I know who said his youth was exactly like A Clockwork Orange and who is doing real good now with young people who might have followed his path.

        The Keys of this world have only learned that they can do more of the same as long as they have shiny suits, wristwatches as big as dinner plates and smirk a lot.

        I look to Dante’s architecture of Hell as a guide – there he differentiates between crimes of passion and crimes of malice. Crimes of passion can be regretted, and often soon are, but crimes of malice arise from a corrupt soul.

        Can you guess who I’d vote for?

    • AmaKiwi 4.2

      I believe the most effective police are those who understand the criminal mind. It’s a love/hate situation. We NEED those police who can think like crims.

  5. Blue 5

    The sentence of the Herald article which made me angriest was this:

    The text messages appear to confirm that the recording was inadvertent, not a deliberate News of the World-style conspiracy as Key had claimed.

    And yet the police publicly announced that in their view Ambrose was ‘probably’ guilty of deliberately recording the conversation.

    Bastards. Just utter fucking bastards.

    • Rhinocrates 5.1

      Yep. Know some women who’ve forced out of the force for being female and queer, beaten to the point of permanent brain damage at legitimate protests, stalked via their databases for daring to divorce a police contractor. They’re the Mongrel Mob in blue with better equipment and a state sanction.

      As you say: bastards. Just utter fucking bastards.

      And civil society depends on having a police force that is representative and trusted.

      Be afraid.

    • Rhinocrates 5.2

      Yep. Know some women who’ve forced out of the force for being female and queer, beaten to the point of permanent brain damage at legitimate protests, stalked via their databases for daring to divorce. They’re the Mongrel Mob in blue with better equipment and a state sanction.

      As you say, bastards. Just utter fucking bastards.

      And civil society depends on having a police force that is representative and trusted.

      Be afraid.

  6. BrucetheMoose 6

    Apparently The Two Jonnies had another cup of tea/coffee/collusion the other day. This time more private. In the fashion that Johnny (smiley version) prefers nowadays – the sneaky backroom style. Works for The Mafia. I guess the isolated park bench is a bit beneath these two.
    By the way, the whole “if we have nothing to fear we have nothing to hide” notion was how the Nazis slipped the whole SS/Gestapo thing under the door of the general German populace. It then became their standardised company operational mantra. Not sure about others, but I’m so not too enthusiastic on using that is a plausible reason to remodel our security services and laws.

  7. BrucetheMoose 7

    Apparently The Two Jonnies had another cup of tea/coffee/collusion the other day. This time more private. In the fashion that Johnny (smiley version) prefers nowadays – the sneaky backroom style. Works for The Mafia. I guess the isolated park bench is a bit beneath these two.
    By the way, the whole “if we have nothing to fear we have nothing to hide” notion was how the Nazis slipped the whole SS/Gestapo thing under the door of the general German populace. It then became their standardised company operational mantra. Not sure about others, but I’m so not too enthusiastic on using that is a plausible reason to remodel our security services and laws.
    Yeh yeh, I know Godwin.

    • BLiP 7.1

      Godwin’s Law is just that – a Law, not a judgement. The fact that x number of internet comments will inevitably result in a reference to the Nazi’s or Hitler does not detract from the relevance and accuracy of such references. I guess, in this case, it could be deemed a “slippery slope” fallacy but I doubt you were inferring that concentration camps are the result of John Key’s promotion of his GCSB Bill. Certainly, that “nothing to fear nothing to hide” mantra was echoed with Goebbels promotion of his own reduction in civil liberties and John Key’s overall promotion of his GCSB Bill has been classic.

      John Key got off to a bad start. Jeffrey Palmer points to the legal push-back by Kim Dotcom to his extradition hearing as a key moment. It was then that we learned the GCSB had been illegally spying on New Zealanders. Then it turns out GCSB is being run by a mate of John Key’s. An inquiry then returns a scathing report highlighting an entrenched systematic routine of illegality based on a “convenient” interpretation of the law, an interpretation that was never properly examined until 2012. Then the report was leaked . . . and “subversives” and Peter Dunne and Andrea Vance, and the Prime Minister’s staff, and so on as we get closer and closer to John Key’s malfeasance.

      Meanwhile, the National Ltd™ government sets up the passing of two pieces of legislation aimed at making everything legal and no one responsible, especially John Key. Now a proven liar, and something of a bumbling incompetent mid-level management consultant rip-off artist, John Key has run out of credibility on this, or any, issue. He had no choice but to promote his GCSB Bill via PR rather than honest debate, discussion and public display of all the evidence. So far, we’ve had . . .

      – nothing to fear, nothing to hide

      – weapons of mass destruction

      – organised crime

      – “subversives” working the media

      – anonymous computer hackers

      – Al Qaeda terrorist New Zealanders training in Yemen

      – US issued terrorits alert

      . . . its all just bullshit. The Law Society, the Human Rights Commission, Privacy Commissioner, actual victims of the GCSB, and all manner of other New Zealanders object to the GCSB Bill because of specific concerns that need to be addressed before a government can justly impose such laws. Rather than address those concerns in any meaningful way, out come the ad hom – “uninformed” – and the lies – “you were late with your submission” – and the threats – “you wanna keep your funding, or not?”. Welcome to National Ltd™’s “brighter future” for New Zealand.

      I can’t quite picture the concentration camps just yet, although the pattern of public dialogue from those imposing the unjust laws does have a certain stench about it.

      • yeshe 7.1.1

        oh BLiP, how I wish you were wrong about our dangerous prime minister. Thnx for your clarity.

  8. One Anonymous Knucklehead 8

    I sense open source encryption software is going to become more popular among lawyers and accountants. I expect the medical profession will need to look at how to keep the Prime Minister’s Office out of their records too.

    • BLiP 8.1

      Why bother. I quite like David Shearer’s interim solution – just “cc: John Key” on *everything*. Cut out the middle-man and include him with every email, txt, Facebook post, and private chat.

    • Murray Olsen 8.2

      I suspect they’ll make using encryption software an offence if it ever becomes popular. They don’t just want the right to watch us, they want to make it illegal for us to close the curtains.

  9. BLiP 9

    The public: “So, you want to enable foreign-owned and corporate international spying on any New Zealander and all of those we are in contact with including any journalists the armed forces have secretly identified as subversive, and you want to do that in order to protect our civil liberties. Is that right?”

    John Key: “Yes.”

    The public: “What happens when there’s a mistake or rules get broken or innocents are woven into expensive legal actions or the spying is about internecine personal or political bullshit games?”

    John Key: “That won’t happen. Trust me.”

    The public: “Ummmmm . . . “

  10. Treetop 10

    Vance was always going to come up against Key.

    Pretend that the Kitteridge report was not leaked, the knowledge that 88 people had been spied on was going to be revealed. Key was not going to like what the media had to say. Key would not have had to appoint Henry to investigate who the leaker was and this would have saved him a lot of bother.

    The issue for me is that Key has shown that he demands to have privacy where he is concerned and when he feels as though his RIGHT to it has been interfered with he becomes protective of what he has said.

    So nothing to hide nothing to fear is not applied.

    A journalist’s job is to report the facts about an issue and for the public to make up their mind. In Vances case it is how the government have intruded on her correspondence in how she did her job, regardless of the Kitteridge report being leaked.

    Once the GCSB Bill is passed and a report is leaked or a journalist gets in his way,

    Will Key use the GCSB to find out who has crossed him and what action will he take and what will he tell the country?

    Will Key get a warrant signed to do this?

    • BLiP 10.1

      Will Key get a warrant signed to do this?

      Don’t be silly. His GCSB Bill actually obviates the need for a GCSB warrant to spy on New Zealanders. If he wanted to be legal about it he would just have to put up a case to the police, or the SIS, or the armed forces and they would obtain the warrant and no one would ever have to know it was done on John Key’s behalf. Also, pay attention: we’ve just found out, John Key doesn’t need to get a warrant to spy on his staff or fellow ministers or pesky Beehive journalists. He just writes the guidelines to an inquiry to be carried out on some flimsy pretence and then goes “ooops”. Can’t even bring himself to apologise.

      • Treetop 10.1.1

        “Will Key get a warrant signed to do this?”

        Notice that I didn’t say that a warrant would be required to spy.

        Dunne seems to think that he can put in an amendment that Key has to have a warrant signed and that Key will respect this.

  11. tracey 11

    That which is morally wrong can never be politically correct….

    irony is madame chiang kai shek said it

  12. tracey 12

    Does godwin discuss how long before someone is called a pinko a commie or a red?

  13. Sable 13

    The police are inextricably tied to the government and have no option save to do their bidding. Their needs to be more separation of powers so politicians can not use the police or other services inappropriately.

  14. yeshe 14

    This is deserves a link and re-post .. from Russell Brown’s blog, Toby writes on the Bradley Ambrose affair … MontyPythonesque perfection ….

    “Do I have this right?

    1. PM complains to police that man has deliberately intercepted his private communications.

    2. Police deliberately intercept man’s communications, which show that man did not deliberately intercept PM’s communications.

    3. Police insinuate that man deliberately intercepted PM’s communications.

    http://publicaddress.net/hardnews/its-worse-than-you-think/

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    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    6 days ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    7 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    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
    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
    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
  • 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

  • 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
    7 hours ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    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
    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
    6 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 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
    Kia ora koutou katoa I’m speaking directly to all New Zealanders today to give you as much certainty and clarity as we can as we fight Covid-19. Over the past few weeks, the world has changed. And it has changed very quickly. In February it would have seemed unimaginable to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to 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 welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
    JOINT MINISTERIAL STATEMENT BY SINGAPORE AND NEW ZEALAND AFFIRMING COMMITMENT TO ENSURING SUPPLY CHAIN CONNECTIVITY AMIDST THE COVID-19 SITUATION  The COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis.  As part of our collective response to combat COVID-19, Singapore and New Zealand are committed to maintaining open and connected supply chains. We ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Transit between Australia and New Zealand
    Travel restrictions, closing our border to almost all travelers came into force from 23:59 on Thursday 19 March 2020 (NZDT).  All airlines were informed of these restrictions before they came into force. Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says “The transit of passengers between Australia and New Zealand has been agreed upon and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $100 million to redeploy workers
    The Government has allocated $100 million to help redeploy workers affected by the economic impact of COVID-19, with the hard-hit region of Gisborne-Tairāwhiti to be the first helped, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford, Forestry and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Employment Minister Willie Jackson announced today. Phil Twyford ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More support for wood processing
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is ramping up support for Tairāwhiti’s wood processing sector to bolster the region’s economy at a time of heightened uncertainty, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Following earlier announcements today of a regional support package for Tairāwhiti, Minister Jones has also announced a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt steps in to protect Air New Zealand
    The Coalition Government has stepped in to protect Air New Zealand with a significant financial deal that protects essential routes and allows the company to keep operating. The Government and Air New Zealand have agreed a debt funding agreement through commercial 24-month loan facilities of up to $900 million*. The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Stronger border measures to protect NZers from COVID-19
    The Government has taken further measures to protect New Zealanders from the COVID-19 virus, effectively stopping all people from boarding a plane to New Zealand from 11:59pm today, except for returning New Zealanders, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today.  New Zealanders’ partners, legal guardians or any dependent children travelling with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Action on indoor gatherings and events to protect public health
    The Government has reinforced its commitment to protecting the health of New Zealanders from COVID-19 through the cancellation of indoor events with more than 100 people.  “Protecting the health of New Zealanders is our number one priority, and that means we need to reduce the risks associated with large gatherings,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealanders advised not to travel overseas
    The New Zealand Government is advising New Zealanders not to travel overseas due to COVID-19, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced. “We are raising our travel advice to the highest level: do not travel,” Mr Peters said. “This is the first time the New Zealand Government has advised New Zealanders ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago