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UK Labour now what?

Written By: - Date published: 9:16 am, July 2nd, 2016 - 73 comments
Categories: Europe, International, spin, uk politics, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: , , , , , , ,

get corbyn

The past week has seen some of the most inept political manoeuvring I have ever seen from a left wing party, and believe me I have seen a lot …

Following the Brexit vote the Conservatives and David Cameron should have been pilloried by the forces that be for even risking a vote on such a subject when the stakes were so high. With Cameron falling on his sword, Boris Johnson faltering and a bunch of no name potential successors lining up and with Nigel Farage approaching peak dickhead status things looked good for Labour to impress voters and stake out a position for being an alternative Government.

Instead most of the caucus went rabid.  As Mike Smith has pointed out it seems clear that the plan was premeditated and pre-planned.  Clearly some are willing to sacrifice the government benches for the more important goal of stopping a genuine left winger from being Prime Minister.  Solidarity forever.

Some of the best analysis has come from the blogs.  The Canary in the UK has become for me a must read and if you want a local passionate dissection of what is happening then you cannot go past John Palethorpe’s Shinbone Star.

John summarises events leading up to the mass resignation of Labour MPs from the Shadow Cabinet as follows:

Over the next 48 hours a succession of Shadow Cabinet members, junior ministers and secretaries tendered their resignations. Andy Burnham, notably, refused to resign on the grounds that he never shown disloyalty to a leader and he was not about to start. When questioned, the resigning MPs insisted that there was no coordination and it was a matter of personal choice. This clashed starkly with reports from a fortnight before about the plan to remove Corbyn regardless of the result of the EU Referendum.

The reasons for resignation were curiously similar. Corbyn’s lacklustre campaigning, his leadership style, his ability to connect with voters and, in one case, his lack of experience regarding the upcoming Brexit negotiations. It would be fascinating to know who has that experience, given all parties appear to be panic stricken at the prospect. All of them called for him to resign, to step down. For the good of the party.

Along with Enzo Giordani he also blogs superbly about soccer.  Both sites deserve bookmarking.

It appears to me there are two basic justifications being offered for why Corbyn should not be Labour’s leader.  Strip out the nice superficial language that English MPs use publicly and there are two basic claims:

  1. Corbyn is unelectable.
  2. Corbyn is incompetent.

As to one well every recent opportunity that the British Electorate has had to express its views of Labour have been actually quite positive for Labour, despite the unrelenting negative media narrative that Labour is doomed under Corbyn’s leadership.  For instance (thanks Canary):

  • Labour has won 4 by-elections. Oldham West, Sheffield Brightside, Ogmore & Tooting with three resulting in an increased majority.
  • Labour won 4 mayoral elections under Corbyn – London, Bristol, Salford and Liverpool.
  • Membership of the party has surged, from 193,000 to over 380,000.
  • Labour’s 2016 local election results were not the predicted disaster with all previously Labour controlled councils being retained and Labour losing 1% of its Councillors compared to the Conservative’s 6% and the loss of control of one council.
  • And Corbyn did not fail in the remain vote with the proportion of labour voters voting remain matching the vote of SNP voters.

As to the second justification clearly Corbyn fails the being a member of the in crowd of the political media bubble and being able to play political games test.  Such failure should not rule him out of contention however.  Being a successful bubble game player should not guarantee anything.

The media, including the Guardian, has been especially negative.  But maybe they should review their membership of the bubble.

Jim Parker describes the political media bubble phenomenon as the cult of the savvy.

This is the practice of journalists reporting from inside the system to others like them. The viewpoint and mindset are that of political operatives, judging each day’s developments in terms of who won and who lost the news cycle.

“Promoting journalists as insiders in front of the outsiders, the viewers, the electorate…. this is a clue to what’s broken about political coverage in the US and Australia,” Rosen has written. “Things are out of alignment. Journalists are identifying with the wrong people. Therefore the kind of work they are doing is not as useful as we need it to be.”

Journalists have become inward looking and disconnected from the electorate for a few reasons. One is economic. Thanks to newsroom cutbacks due to declining media revenues, there are few specialists anymore. Where formerly there might have been a health reporter, whose job it was to track health policy, or a technology reporter, who was across broadband issues, there are now only generalists. Few newsrooms have the resources to look at issues as they might affect voters, so the focus becomes the race itself, politics as a process.

The second reason, and one well canvassed, is the rise of social media, the continuous news cycle and the appropriation of new communication technologies by politicians and their staffers. Stories that might formerly have developed over two or three days now can be born, live and die within two or three hours. Journalists try to keep up, but the more they chase the noise, the less time they have to find the signal.

If you want to think about local examples then Paddy Gower is clearly a member of the insider club, connecting with the social elites and trying to be the news.  By comparison John Campbell with his practice of reaching out to ordinary people and his habit of letting them tell their story is the total antithesis of the usual approach.  We need more reporters like John Campbell.

Parker then describes clearly the superficiality of media analysis of public opinion.

Everyone talks condescendingly about what the “ordinary voters” are thinking, or worse, “the punters”. No-one ever asks them directly. We hear constantly about how political parties have become scientific about picking up phrases uttered in focus groups and then cynically layering them into their communication as if this is somehow admirable.

It’s this insider mentality, this culture of a narrow group of elite opinion makers talking among themselves, that was so dramatically given the middle finger by Britons in their recent referendum on whether to stay in the European Union, irrespective of the rights and wrongs of the Brexit.

If you recall, the late polls in that case were suggesting a reasonably comfortable victory for the remain camp. Indeed, even as the counting began, the exit camp was ready to concede defeat. Then, as the trend reversed, the talking heads had to change their prepared scripts.

John Palethorpe addresses Corbyn’s competency in these terms:

I am not advancing the case that Corbyn has been a fantastic leader. He does lack the modern skills of messaging that have become essential in politics. His demeanour can appear reserved, unenthusiastic even. But he’s the leader elected by the Labour party membership to lead the Labour part. And with less than twelve months as leader the attempt to remove him now, by those who possess a vague Toryish born-to-rule attitude towards Labour, seems cynically opportunistic and has inadvertently threatened the very integrity of the British Labour Party.

But back to the heading of this post.  UK Labour needs to sort its stuff out.  It looks likely that it will split, wIthaca Corbyn, some loyal MPs like Dennis Skinner, the activists and the trade unions on one side and the careerists on the other side.  Given that the UK has a FPP system some sort of armageddon for the left appears to be very likely should Labour fracture.

Maybe Labour should start again and seek out future MPs like this person who will be driven by a desire to improve things for all UK residents and not by a desire to be part of the bubble.

73 comments on “UK Labour now what?”

  1. lprent 1

    It is pretty clear that the parliamentary wing of UK Labour haven’t realised that the world has moved on without them. And they certainly haven’t been.listening it their supporters and members. The members operate on family and friend contacts, these days often enhanced by social media. They don’t listen to talking heads in media with any thing like the respect those narcissistic fools think that they deserve.

    Same thing happened here a election cycle back and is still proceeding. The PLPs can do what they like. But it is likely that in the UK we will see a parliamentary rump party form – one that eventually dies without a party base.

    • Jenny 1.1

      “The PLPs can do what they like. But it is likely that in the UK we will see a parliamentary rump party form – one that eventually dies without a party base.”
      lprent

      Or alternatively the Labour Party caucus could succeed in ousting Corbyn. And the British Labour Party will continue to limp on into an unedifying future in its present form, dominated by a by a conservative caucus, and conservative leader.

      • Jenny 1.1.1

        As Hone Harawira said at the last election, in a statement that could easily apply to the whole Left. “We are trying to change a system, that resists change.”

        • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.1

          Systems always resist change because those who work in the system don’t see anything wrong with it and they feel under threat because it’s their jobs and livelihoods being threatened.

    • AmaKiwi 1.2

      It is the era of fragmentation.

      Provinces are breaking away to form new countries. Political parties are splintering apart. The center cannot hold.

      To me the similarity between the battles fought by Corbyn and Cunliffe with their respective parliamentary parties is obvious.

      In politics, friends may come and friends may go, but enemies accumulate. The NZL caucus has made a lot of enemies, including me.

      • Chooky 1.2.1

        + 100

      • Jenny 1.2.2

        +100

      • Jenny 1.2.3

        “Provinces are breaking away to form new countries. Political parties are splintering apart. The center cannot hold.”
        amakiwis

        ‘Independence’, especially from central authority, has often been depicted as a bad thing.

        I like to think of it as ‘devolvement’, where more democracy is being returned to a local, (and more accountable) level.

        And this accountability is made stronger by social media which also has a democratising influence.

        Where more remote authority can ride above social media criticism more easily, those closer to the people they represent find it a lot harder to escape the ‘democratisation’ created in the electronic commons.

        Scottish independence is a good thing and Brexit is a good thing. The centralisation of power has seen that power becoming concentrated in fewer and fewer hands and those hands becoming more and more remote and unaccountable.

  2. newsense 2

    Chilchot Chilchot Chilchot

  3. invisiphilia 3

    An excellent round up on the state of things Micky. It’s an interesting phenomenon that’s emerging with the MSM vs the potential of people power on social media.
    Crucially, as you point out “Journalists try to keep up, but the more they chase the noise, the less time they have to find the signal.” This seems like a double edged sword in terms of getting the truth out there and also, to the extent that social media remains dependent on conventional media it imports some of its structural imbalances.

    I’m just waiting for this chapter to be compared to the Arab Spring as the process continues…British Summer doesn’t have the same ring to it. How about Bummer :)?

  4. Jenny 4

    It appears to me there are two basic justifications being offered for why Corbyn should not be Labour’s leader. Strip out the nice superficial language that English MPs use publicly and there are two basic claims:

    1. Corbyn is unelectable.
    2. Corbyn is incompetent.

    And unstated:

    3. Corbyn is too Left Wing

    • Jenny 4.1

      Whoever thought leadership isn’t important, does not understand politics.

      The British Labour Party Caucus want their man or woman at the helm.

      A lot of this hysteric reaction has been fuelled by the very real possibility that the political chaos as result of fallout from the Brexit vote, could lead to a snap election and the very real possibility of a Corbyn led government.

      http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/will-there-be-a-snap-brexit-election/

      As Chris Trotter likes to say about the similarly conservative dominated NZ Labour Party caucus, “They would rather keep control of the losing side, than lose control of the winning side.”

    • Pat 4.2

      the main reason is he is not a neoliberal…..the only game in (their) town

  5. jcuknz 5

    I think it is a necessary change for the Labour Party and lprent has it right that the timid half way MPs will die a natural death come election time.

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    The more Corbyn tries to appease the 100+ hard core blairites and right wingers in his Caucus, the more he will sound like every other compromised Labour Leader and as swordfish has pointed out, his support amongst the ordinary members will drop.

    This was part of Cunliffe’s failing as well. Trying to appease the careerists and the right wing with praise and position, when all they are aiming to do is stab you in the back at the first turn.

    Corbyn needs to stay strong with his principles, and with the messages that gave him the leadership by a landslide. Or he will be gone.

    • Jenny 6.1

      +100

    • Anne 6.2

      Spot on CV.

      I did read somewhere that Corbyn is hanging out for the Chilcot report to be released (Thursday NZ time?) and after that he may well resign. Don’t know if that’s speculation or not, but it’s possible he will do so provided they come up with the candidate of his choice to succeed him.

      http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/chilcot-inquiry-report-published-what-11548292

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      This was part of Cunliffe’s failing as well. Trying to appease the careerists and the right wing with praise and position, when all they are aiming to do is stab you in the back at the first turn.

      QFT

    • Chooky 6.4

      +100 CV

      • Jenny 6.4.1

        +100

        A lesson for Andrew Little if his Right Wing try to pressure him. Especially over his new relationship with the Green Party.

        Deep sea oil drilling is the Keystone XL of New Zealand politics.

        For the new rapprochement between Labour and the Green Party to succeed will require the Labour Party to join the Green Party in opposing deep sea oil drilling in our waters.

        At the last election the Green Party said that they would drop all “bottom lines” to get cabinet seats in a Labour led government.

        According to Russell Norman this included the Greens ditching their opposition to deep sea oil to get a coalition agreement.

        https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/archive/russel-norman-on-deep-sea-oil-drilling-6073831.html

        Without getting any their bottom lines agreed to, what would they achieve?

        The answer is ; Nothing. And this is because once in cabinet the Green Cabinet members would have been outvoted on every issue. But worse than this they would be bound by cabinet collective responsibility, to discipline the rest of the party to go along with what ever Labour decided.

        This position is no longer tenable. (If it ever was).

        To go into coalition with Labour, the Green Party will need to get some of their bottom lines agreed to first.

        The first of these is no deep sea oil drilling.

        No doubt the screams of outrage from the neoliberal right of the LP if Little makes any concession to the Greens on this issue will be heard to the heavens.

        Little needs to tell his right wing caucus colleagues just as Corbyn has, “Get lost.”

  7. swordfish 7

    Latest YouGov Poll of UK Labour Party Members

    Open mike 02/07/2016

    Although the majority doubt that Corbyn can win the next Election (35% Likely / 57% Unlikely), the majority have precisely the same doubts about the viability of any New Leader as well (38% Likely / 50% Unlikely).

    Anti-Corbynites in the UK media often “forget” (deliberately ignore) the fact that Polls taken during the leadership campaign last year usually found far more Labour Members and Labour voters saying the Brownite candidate Yvette Cooper and the arch-Blairite candidate Liz Kendall were ‘Unelectable’ (ie would be very unlikely to win the next General Election) than was the case for Corbyn. (Soft Left candidate, Andy Burnham, was sometimes seen as a little more electable than Corbyn and sometimes not, depending on the particular poll).

    Instead, we get this nonsense in the MSM that last year Labour members self-indulgently opted for a principled but totally unelectable leader instead of 3 highly electable alternatives. The reality is that not only Labour people but also voters in general didn’t see it that way at all.

  8. BM 8

    UKIP party is up around 20%, I reckon they’re going to be a big mover in the coming months.

    Interesting if you end up with three parties all around 30%, or if Labour splits, 2 parties at 30% and two at 15%.

    All the stars seem to be aligning for Farage to become England next PM.

    http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/voting-intention-2

    • Jenny 8.1

      Echoes of pre-war Germany.

      • BM 8.1.1

        Not wanting to Godwin the thread, but yes, you can sort of see similarities.

        With Hitler he managed to convince the Germans that the Jewish bankers were the reason that the German economy had crashed and why the German people were suffering.

        if the economy starts to go pear shaped because of Brexit, it would be quite easy for a talented orator such as Farage to harness that same sort of anger and discontent, then use it in a way to catapult himself into the top spot.

        Instead of the Jews it will be the EU, the multinationals etc.

        • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.1

          The National Socialists rose to power for a very simple reason: the political establishment of Germany stopped listening and acting on the concerns of 90% of the citizens.

          • Tory 8.1.1.1.1

            Corbyns personality cult Momentum is doing the same as the National Solicisits, it’s just from the other side of the political spectrum and its Marxism. The vitriol spewing forth from those supporters is interesting to say the least.

            • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Sorry mate, but that’s a total mis-characterisation.

              Corbyn for starters is a grumpy grand father type, not a charismatic orator cult figure.

              • Tory

                If you read through the vitriol that Momentum are spewing out it’s clear they are advocating a “cleansing” from the Labour ranks and the only person capable of leading this “left wing revolution” is Corbyn (according to them). Of course it’s a movement based on a person (Corbyn). This is the cult of Marxism and I bet the plans for gulags are well advanced.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Uh, it’s the Blairite turncoat MPs who have planned and launched a “cleansing” of the Labour Party, against the General Membership.

                  Or are the facts alluding you even harder than usual?

                  As I said – Corbyn is a grumpy old grandfather type. He’s no charismatic orator.

      • AmaKiwi 8.1.2

        @ Jenny

        “Echoes of pre-war Germany” and USA and UK and NZ, Australia, France, Italy, Russia . . .

        The age of empire is ending. That collapse did not lead to dictatorship everywhere. That is our challenge. Can we change the system without dictatorship?

        • Colonial Viper 8.1.2.1

          Unless you look at Sheldon Wolin’s model of inverted totalitarianism.

          Which differs from the typical tyranny of a single, charismatic dictator figure.

          Instead it is the tyranny of a tiny faceless elite through an institutionalised dictatorship, operating through a highly managed and increasing illiberal democracy.

          In this form of tyranny, pushing a figure head John Key or US President out of power does nothing to change the tyranny that the population is subjected to.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverted_totalitarianism

          • KJT 8.1.2.1.1

            The “patsy” model is well known in Business.

            Use a figurehead “hatchet man” to close down the plant, reduce wages, sack workers or make other unpopular changes.

            Then they are blamed, and usually sacked themselves, while the real power behind the scenes keeps their teflon coating.

            Hence “Patsies” like Bennet, Brownlee, Joyce, Parata, etc are used to front the more evil policies. (Douglas? Goff, Shearer?).

            Key will be dumped as well, once the groundswell of public opinion makes him unpalatable.

            There is a never ending supply of “Patsys” among those who will give up their conscience to be part of the “big boys” in group” for money, status or the illusion of power.

            • Colonial Viper 8.1.2.1.1.1

              it seems the public is tired of voting for Patsy after Patsy.

        • D'Esterre 8.1.2.2

          AmaKiwi: ” Echoes of pre-war Germany” and USA and UK and NZ, Australia, France, Italy, Russia . . ”

          Russia? I don’t think so. Best not to take at face value Western propaganda regarding that part of the world. See this:

          http://thesaker.is/counter-propaganda-russian-style/

      • Jenny 8.1.3

        What I meant in my comment is that like prewar Germany, though never getting a majority vote, a minor Extreme Right Party was able to gain control through the political unclarity and vacillation on the Left.

        Which is what we are seeing repeated in the UK.

        http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/jun/16/nigel-farage-defends-ukip-breaking-point-poster-queue-of-migrants

    • swordfish 8.2

      Then again … split between Ukip’s Farage and Carswell over last couple of days … not to mention leading Ukip donor, Arron Banks, to start new Party, possibly minus Farrage …

      UK politics imploding all over the place … shit’s hit the fan … every man, woman and child for themselves … reminds me of the Panic scene where passengers start fighting and strangling each other in Flying High once they realise there’s no pilot.

      • BM 8.2.1

        Wow, it really is insanity over there.

        Going to be interesting to see who comes out on top.

        • AmaKiwi 8.2.1.1

          @ BM

          “Wow, it really is insanity over there” AND here.

          Jonathan Pie (3.2 above) is also describing New Zealand.

        • Colonial Viper 8.2.1.2

          I hear that UK applications for Irish passports have gone through the roof.

          • Peter Swift 8.2.1.2.1

            As Ireland citizens have been assured free passage in to the UK independent of any EU directive or movement of trade clauses in the brexit negotiations, it’s probably all the euro residents and illegals fearing the deportation axe, checking out how they can remain on British soil and carry on enjoying the way of life and benefits they have become accustom to.

    • McGrath 8.3

      I wouldn’t rule out a Tory split given the grief in their party as well. Brexit has smashed a hammer into UK politics

  9. save nz 9

    Really well thought out post and good links. +1000

  10. RedLogix 10

    I have nothing but admiration for Corbyn’s courage under such withering circumstances. Who knows what next week holds, but his refusal to buckle under the weight of such self-interested betrayal is a remarkable thing.

    Often it is that the introverted, reserved personality hides a hidden resiliency.

  11. Ad 11

    Just freaking sad.

    Should the Labour Party split there, the broader UK electorate will at next elections have the option of an even more unstable coalition, or a post-Brexit re-stabilised Conservative Party.

    We could give them lessons on losing.

  12. mikesh 12

    J M Greer (aka The Archdruid) has, in his latest blog, suggested that one of the reasons for the Tories’ success in 2015 was Cameron’s promise of a referendum. In other words many voters, who might otherwise have voted Labour or LibDem, and who were desperate to bring about an egress, would have voted Conservative to ensure that the referendum went ahead.

    If a snap election is held and Labour decides to make EU membership the defining issue by promising to “remain” in the event of their being elected, as some have suggested, it could turn out to be the stupidest move they have ever made. This seems unlikely if Corbyn continues as leader as he seems lukewarm on EU membership anyway, but it would seem eminently possible if Corbyn is dumped.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      if it’s a stupid move for UK Labour, you can bet that its on the cards somewhere.

  13. mosa 13

    Corbyn is on a hiding to nothing and what i would do is sit tight and wait for the inevitable vote to sack him or not.
    If they take him out but there is still massive grassroots support there he should take that support and form a new Labour party with like minded people who believe there is a place for what Corbyn has been articulating and seek funding and present that alternative to the british people and ask for support.
    Or if he prevails reform the current party driving out all those who want to be MPs for Labour but dont believe it should return to its founding principles and dont have the courage or the peoples respect to articulate those principals.
    Its been split before as right leaning Labour MPs left in 1981 and formed the SDP and merged with the old Liberal party which ironically was too the left of the then Labour party and formed the Alliance which contested the 1983 general election and polled poorly and are now the Liberal Democrats and are still a party of the left that Corbyn could work with.
    He has options and this current realignment has a long way too go and a future proportional system could be on the cards but will be a hard fight but not impossible.

  14. Bill Drees 14

    The Suicide Squad

    http://wingsoverscotland.com/the-suicide-squad/#more-86234

    13. At some point during this mayhem – next week, to be precise – the Chilcot Report will be released, setting off a fresh bout of internecine warfare within the party.

    Read all 14 well thought out point of The Rev on Wings over Scotland.

  15. johnm 15

    Corbyn is the Labour leader. He was elected by the majority of the Labour membership. Basically the parliamentary shower can f@ck off there are always fresh replacements. Go Corbyn stick it up the traitorous bastards!

    • Tory 15.1

      I totally agree, the sooner that “Momemtum”, “Socialist Workers Party” and Affiliated Unions take over the UK Labour Party the sooner we see the Left fracture and Conservatives can look forward to a long period of government. Perhaps you could send KDC to offer some advice to Corbyn to speed up the process?

  16. OneTrack 16

    ” Following the Brexit vote the Conservatives and David Cameron should have been pilloried by the forces that be for even risking a vote on such a subject when the stakes were so high”

    Of course we can’t risk real people on the street having their say, can we? Then where would we be?

  17. peterlepaysan 17

    If Corbyn loses there is no british /english (whatever ) labour party.
    Our own labour party went down the gurgler post 1984/87.
    The clark years came in on a centrist micromanagement strategy
    Over reliance on focus groups and prodding sleeping dogs can have unwanted results.
    Like being voted out of office.
    One has to be rather egotistic to want to become an mp, let alone a pm.
    Egotism has its place but can lead to not relating very much to other people in any meaningful way.
    The british plp have an almighty attack of hubris. The gods will destroy them.
    The party could survive and probably will under some banner.
    There are nzlp caucus members still extant in the house who remember the glory days when they could pull stunts like the english plp and win.
    At the end of the day, who is paying the bills?

  18. Jenny 18

    Now we are getting somewhere, and it is the key to how the Left should view the EU (negatively), and the Brexit, (positively). And take back the Brexit from the Nigel Farage racists.

    Corbyn Vows to Veto TTIP

  19. Jenny 19

    Corbyn “unelectable”?

    Only because the main stream media silence him while giving the right wing detractors in his caucus inflated headlines.

    http://gmmuk.com/why-wasnt-this-speech-shown-on-mainstream-media/

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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • Universal income – a challenge to capitalism or a crutch?
    As the world economy slides rapidly towards deep recession there are growing calls for a Universal Benefit coming from some leftists and rightists. Now Finance Minister Grant Robertson is saying it is on the table.  This article by a French party Workers Struggle provides analysis of various forms of universal ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
    This is the advice from the very top of the anti-fluoride movement – Paul Connett, director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN). Don’t worry about reading  up on all the scientific information “You only have ...
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 10
    . . April 4: Day 10 of living in lock-down… I wake up to a fine Saturday morning which normally would be like an early Christmas. But it’s Day 10 of Level 4 Lock Down. What  will my fellow New Zealanders be doing on a day like this – staying ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Redline reaching out to more writers & readers
    Some time during the night we went over the 850,000 views mark. We might have had our millionth view by the end of this year – certainly by early next year. Most of the people involved in Redline spent years and years producing various small left-wing papers and selling them ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Keir Starmer elected
    Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: Michael Baker and the Big House
    One of the key voices in this extraordinary time in which we live is that of University of Otago epidemiologist Professor Michael Baker. Philip Matthews did an an excellent job this weekend of capturing the way he became the man for this moment in a profile for The Press.But one ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand Gives up on Trying to Save Daylight
    New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern addressed the nation today about the decline in daylight New Zealand has been experiencing over the previous few months. She said “As many of you will notice, our attempts to stem the dwindling of the daylight over the last few months have been completely ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    3 days ago
  • A bulletin from Greece
    Redline received this article from the KOE a Marxist party in Greece Our friends in the KOE describe here the mounting crisis in Greece and tensions on the Turkish border. As desperate people flee from their homelands which have been ruined after decades of imperialist wars and interventions the people ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • And God spake all these words, saying
    As the first week of Level Four lockdown unfolded, mounting questions grew as to just what was (and was not) allowed under its “rules”. Partly these were driven by some apparently contradictory messages from different authority figures and explanations carried in the media. Partly they reflected a somewhat sketchy legal basis ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 9
    . . April 3: Day 9 of living in lock-down… Another late-start to my work day. Everything is temporarily upended as clients are shuffled around so we can minimise our “bubble” by reducing the number of people we help. One of my colleagues has been removed from his clients; his ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Death to our lockdown enemies!
    We must root out the traitors among us! ...
    Imperator FishBy Scott Yorke
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: The benefits of electrification
    In order to meet our 2050 carbon target and do our bit to avoid making the Earth uninhabitable, New Zealand needs to decarbonise our economy, replacing fossil fuels with electricity in the energy, industrial and transport sectors. The good news is that it will mean cheaper power for all of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of a pretty flower, .   . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a cute animal video. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 8
    . . April 2: Day eight of living in lock-down… Today, my work day starts late. Our rosters and clients have been dramatically changed, lessening (theoretically) the number of people in our work “bubble”.  If just one of us catches covid19 the impact could be considerable as Grey Base Hospital ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • A note on apartments and bubbles
    As Aotearoa enters week two of lockdown, it’s clear we’re all still working out what our “bubbles” look like and how to stay in them to stop the spread of Covid-19. New to the government’s Covid-19 website is some good guidance for people living in apartment blocks. Recent decades have ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    4 days ago
  • Getting in futures shape 
    “There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.” Lenin Don’t we all know that feeling now.

    Prospect Magazine alerted me to this particularly apt quote. It is a much more evocative quote than Hemingway’s “gradually then suddenly” which is also doing ...

    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    4 days ago
  • Maybe axing Clark would be unfair. But what about any of this is fair?
    Yesterday was the day the consequences of the lockdown suddenly got very real for many. Firms have been closing and laying people off since the outset of the quarantine but this has mostly been happening out of the public eye. The mass closure of a number of iconic New Zealand ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    4 days ago
  • Might a ‘Coasean’ social contract mitigate overall societal harm from COVID-19?
    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
    Resuming Normal Service: The Republican Party's nominee for in 1920, Warren Harding, promised the American people: “not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration”. If she wishes to remain our prime minister, then Jacinda Ardern will offer New Zealanders the same.HOW EDUCATED AMERICA snickered when the ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    4 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    5 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    5 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    5 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    5 days ago
  • Outsiders.
    Bogeymen, Real And Imagined: Is the number of psychopathic and sociopathic individuals in any given society truly as vanishingly small as we like to tell ourselves? Isn’t it more likely that the mass-shooters and serial-killers filling the headlines represent only the tip of a much, much larger iceberg of frightfulness? ...
    5 days ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
    Outgoing Police Commissioner Mike Bush appeared before the Epidemic Response Committee today, who asked him for the rules police are using to enforce the lockdown. He refused:Police Commissioner Mike Bush has admitted the advice given to Kiwis about what they're able to do during the lockdown hasn't been clear enough. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
    For those folk who find my other Lock-Down Diary versions too “negative” or otherwise unpalatable… Here’s a photo of my cat, . . Better? Tomorrow’s Sanitised Version: a pretty flower. . . . =fs= ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
    . . April 1: Day seven of living in lock-down… This morning I had a brief chat with one of my neighbours, “D” (social distance between us, a good three or four metres). I learned he had resigned from his previous job and had been hired by another company – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
    Funnily enough, my thought as I start this post is whether it will be well written enough. Or should that be well enough written? Because so much of what I know about good writing came from my two stints at The Listener, which this morning was shut down due to ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    5 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    5 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
    Dr Kirsty Ross Children and young people can respond differently in times of distress. This also varies by age and developmental stage, with younger children having more magical and imaginative thinking, and older children having more awareness and knowledge of the issues our communities are facing (which brings up ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    6 days ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
    Hungary has been a virtual dictatorship for a decade now, as Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has gradually eroded its democracy. But now, its official, with the passage of an indefinite emergency law allowing rule by decree:Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
    While the economy is on pause under lockdown, the government is beginning to plan how to cope with the post-lockdown, post-tourism, post-export education world we will eventually find ourselves in. They're planning a lot of infrastructure spending as economic stimulus, and have asked for proposals which can start the moment ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
    It's my distraction,  setting up tiny scenes to photograph.  I've got stuck on the Babushka dolls for now.  Something about their bubble shape.  Something about their never changing, smiling features, suggesting persistent equanimity.  Can we get through everything that is being thrown at us and keep at least a tiny ...
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
    . . March 31: Day six of living in lock-down… This time I managed to sleep a little longer and the alarm woke me at the pre-set time: 6.55am. Then remembered I was working a later shift and could’ve slept in. Oh well, there are things to do at home. ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: Diamond Harbour School Blogs I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is unexpectedly missing or ...
    6 days ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    6 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
    For almost a week now, every one of us who isn’t an essential worker has been confined to their bubble. We are allowed to go shopping for groceries, to visit the doctor, and to get a bit of exercise if we stay local. The reason we are doing this is ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    6 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
    The Covid-19 saga will no doubt produce many twists and turns for us before it is finally brought to an end. But one thing it has shown us – and what comfort it should bring us – is that our country’s government is in good hands. I am not thinking ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    7 days ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    7 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    7 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    1 week ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    1 week ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago

  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
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    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
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    1 week 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 ...
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    1 week 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 ...
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    1 week 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 ...
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    1 week 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 ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
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    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
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    2 weeks ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
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  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
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    2 weeks 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 ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
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    2 weeks 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 ...
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  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
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    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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    2 weeks 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 ...
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    2 weeks ago