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Why is Jacinda Ardern so popular? (part 2)

Written By: - Date published: 12:07 pm, November 20th, 2019 - 71 comments
Categories: jacinda ardern, leadership, Politics - Tags: ,

Politics is bloody hard and often brutal, and Labour cop a fair amount of shit, some of it deserved, some not. So it’s great to see something like this being done so well. Fuck the tourism angle, the value I see here is New Zealanders getting to feel good about our PM in the absence of the creepy smile and wave factor. The video is funny, engaging, and at the right moments serious and touching. Well done Ardern and Colbert and thanks for the feel good.

For all the problems with centre left governments in NZ, we got incredibly lucky with the change of fortunes in the lead up to the last election. Ardern’s compassionate neoliberalism presents a specific conundrum for the left, but we can still be grateful that she is really good at her job as a stateswoman. Let’s take a moment to enjoy.

 

71 comments on “Why is Jacinda Ardern so popular? (part 2) ”

  1. michelle 1

    Good promotion for our country and our PM soimon sounds jealous

  2. observer 2

    Ardern is very good at being true to herself. That sounds like a platitude, but –

    One problem that affects many politicians (across the spectrum) is that they are all too obviously trying to deliver their pre-scripted lines, and they come across as insincere, simply because they are. Simon Bridges is the obvious current example, but a series of Labour leaders had the same problem, to varying degrees.

    In formal interviews and stand-ups you might get away with that ("That's not the issue, but what I can say is … [line]"). It's the supposedly "non-political" situations that often reveal more. (As an example, when politicians appear on 7 Days some are really stiff and hopeless, like John Banks was, while others are relaxed and do well, like Phil Goff and Chris Bishop).

    Ardern is enjoying herself in these Colbert clips. She doesn't have to remember what she is supposed to be saying, she trusts herself. That's not something you get from media training. It is just who she is.

    • weka 2.1

      I think this is a large part of it, and its political gold not just because it works better at the PR level, but because we need someone who isn't a sociopath.

      • Karol121 2.1.1

        However, Weka, it would be sad to consider that a politician (as party leader) is voted for or well liked, mainly because she doesn't present as a sociopath, especially in a place like NZ.

        But you do make a valid point, being (as I suggest) that so many NZ politicians have presented as indifferent, cynical, self serving opportunists, and so many have made such ludicrous statements as to suggest that they are at least borderline sociopathic as defined generally (as opposed to that which might be defined specifically in say, a psychological disorders diagnostic manual).
        That is; unwilling to seriously demonstrate even a very basis empathetic characteristic most of the time, and prone to making cruel or very careless statements as if those they present to are too stupid and valueless to comprehend the ramifications.

        The recent statement by Simon Bridges in relation to the removal of human rights was a shocker, and as a lawyer he should have comprehended just how easily such words could be misconstrued, or worse, that the statement might be taken as being future national party social policy. But he is far from being politically alone with regard to this angle.

        Can he even define human rights and civil rights?

        As has been posted just a short way down by Rosemary McDonald, Jacinda Adern does not seem to be that popular with many, but she does do good telly most of the time, (when she is operating in her own personal political safety zone).

        Bear in mind also, that she was well coached prior to entering NZ politics in relation to public appearances and statement management, which is to her credit and to the credit of those who have backed her, and who presumably continue to do so.

  3. Rosemary McDonald 3

    "….compassionate neoliberalism…?

    Good oh.

    I must be speaking with the wrong kind of folk because really, Ardern doesn't seem to be that popular with many, if any.

    But she does do good telly….

    • observer 3.1

      Well, who we talk to is hardly the measure, since we all tend to gravitate towards people on our wavelength.

      That's why professional, weighted polls are a useful guide, and Ardern's approval rating is around 62%, having been as high as 72%. (TV3 and TVNZ polls).

    • weka 3.2

      Why is Jacinda Ardern so popular?

      Maybe you misunderstood what I am saying?

      • Rosemary McDonald 3.2.1

        Those Kiwis living precariously on low wages or punitive welfare might not be feeling the love quite so warmly.

        Trouble is….Ardern is following in footsteps of a master smarmer…after the Previous Incumbent, many are now immune to this kind of performance.

        As with Key…makes me think what as yet unpublicised shit storm are they trying to distract us ftom?

        • weka 3.2.1.1

          Taste is personal I guess, but I am wondering if you are saying that for you, you cannot like someone whose politics you hate. It's different for me.

          I see three things: one is Ardern as a person, and I suspect that I would like her well enough in real life. The second is how she performs as a politician, statesperson, PM. I think she does that job well, sometimes really well. The third is her politics. We both have a problem with that.

          Why does that matter? Because we were this close to having English as PM, and as poor as Labour are on many things, those on punitive welfare would be much, much worse off especially over the long term. Leftie rhetoric of Lab and Nat are both as bad as each other feeds the non-vote and that makes it harder for us to move left. In case you think I'm being an apologist of Labour or Ardern's politics, I'm not, I'm saying that nuance matters and we are lucky that Ardern rose when she did.

          • Siobhan 3.2.1.1.1

            'Nuance' ..you think 'nuance' is really going to deal with Climate change and embedded inequality?

            I am interested in your dismissal of the 'non-vote' however. Are Labour and its supporters still under the impression they can woo the 'soft' National voter? Hows that going really? The most spectacularly unpopular dimwitted leader of National EVER..and still support for National is pretty much steady.

            'Lefties rhetoric'..by which I presume you mean those of us that bang on about silly things like people actually needing homes, health care and adequate income NOW is something your average voter has supported before, and could again, but only if it is presented to them as both moral and the basis of a real thriving economy.

            Labour has chosen not to do that.

            So here we are, on the road to nowhere..with the clock ticking..

            • weka 3.2.1.1.1.1

              "you think 'nuance' is really going to deal with Climate change and embedded inequality?"

              Far more necessary and likely to succeed than the left shitting on itself, yes of course.

              I didn't dismiss the non-vote, I pointed to the problem the left has of discouraging people from voting (that's an argument for supporting the non-vote to vote btw).

              "'Lefties rhetoric'..by which I presume you mean those of us that bang on about silly things like people actually needing homes, health care and adequate income NOW is something your average voter has supported before, and could again, but only if it is presented to them as both moral and the basis of a real thriving economy."

              You mean like the Green Party platform that not even lefties can bring themselves to vote for en masse?

              What I said (always helps to read a whole sentence rather than the first two words),

              "Leftie rhetoric of Lab and Nat are both as bad as each other feeds the non-vote and that makes it harder for us to move left."

              Translation: people running political lines that Lab and Nat are the same are part of the problem creating the culture that leads some people to not vote.

              I'm guessing you didn't bother to stop and thinking about what I was saying and just reacted. At least this is what your comment comes across like, because you don't seem to have understood what I was saying. Disagree with me all you like, I enjoy a good argument, but it would help if you understood what you are arguing against first.

              • Molly

                I'm in the same position as Rosemary and Siobhan, in that I'm not enthusiastic about the decisions and moves of the current coalition government and that translates to a discord with our current PM.

                Like you, I'm sure that as a person without her position of power, I would find her extremely likeable. But as a politician who speaks of the need for kindness – I want to see the follow through. I want to see that position used to be kind to those on welfare, those without housing, those with mental health or disabilities. I don't want just the words.

                In terms of compassion, I want the superb response to the atrocity at Christchurch to be followed up by her team ensuring that the families have the support they need, both financial and emotional.

                I don't want to hear about climate change being our nuclear moment – and then read the watered down version of the Carbon Zero Billl and be expected to celebrate.

                I would prefer that those words that warm the heart, blaze into a fire that reaches those that are cold and isolated, rather than bring a warm glow to those already comfortable.

                From my own personal point of view, this lack of effective follow through is more influential to my reaction than any great PR activity, or singular event.

                Am I pleased that we have Jacinda Ardern rather than Simon Bridges? Of course.

                But am I grateful that she is our PM in terms of what has been achieved in issues I am interested in? No, there has been little to no improvement in those concerns.

                • observer

                  Sometimes I wish Peters had gone with National. Then Rosemary and Siobhan and Molly could be demanding all these things …

                  https://www.labour.org.nz/progress-2yrs-2019

                  Only the totally deluded think there is no real difference, or tell themselves it all would have happened anyway.

                  And that is without the 61 votes for Labour and the Greens. If you want more, then help make that happen … or just keep ignoring basic arithmetic.

                  Complaining about Ardern "failing" is like suing the doctor who tries to save the patient.

                  • weka

                    I'm continually amazed at how much Labour and the Greens are blamed for the NZF effect. Otoh, many of us know that the lack of action on welfare has nothing to do with NZF, it's about Labour's philosophical position. There are other examples (eg Housing, and Health).

                    • observer

                      I agree that there are things Labour wouldn't do, even with 61 MPs and governing alone.

                      What grates is that Ardern is in no way more "cautious" or ‘centrist” than Clark, who had more favourable numbers for the first two terms. But Ardern seems to get more flack than Clark did. And it really seems to be based on little more than her media persona – in short, buying into the Right's framing.

                    • weka []

                      I think it’s more because many people have greater expectations of JA than what Clark did. It’s all the compassion language but that not playing out where it clearly should and could despite NZF. Also, lots of people are not that happy with Clark either, so it’s possibly not the best comparison. More of a concern for me is how we hold Labour accountable and work to getting them re-elected (with the Greens).

                  • Molly

                    I understand that you consider I said that she was "failing", but actually what I said was that despite the intention of promises and the stated outcomes, there is no follow through. I would much prefer to listen to a PM that says, quite directly – because of the percentage we hold we are unable to enact these changes… and go from there. Talking about kindness, and not even having a policy for Labour that effectively addresses those in positions of hardship, is – for me – a mismatch, a discordant note. Talking about a nuclear moment – and then producing the Carbon Zero bill, is also a mismatch.

                    I often came here for the robust debate, but any critique about the current coalition government proposal or scheme, is treated as purely criticism and is stamped on.

                    "Only the totally deluded think there is no real difference, or tell themselves it all would have happened anyway."

                    Better than, is just that – better than.

                    However, in many cases, it is not good enough. And if on a progressive blog, commenters cannot express their disappointment, then I would think that the tribal reaction is just as off-putting as our regular right-wing commentators.

                    Your reply, makes several assumptions, and ignores passing any commentary on my personal preference for politicians that ensure their words are considered and able to be delivered upon.

                    I can never recall commenting on here about John Key in a personal manner (- although in those wild National government days – I may have understandably lost my mind and done so), but I did have the same disquiet when he promised the Pike River families the return of their loved ones immediately in the aftermath of the explosion. And for me, it is the same with clear statements made by this government – make sure that what is being said can be delivered – or refrain from saying it.

                    I consider this disconnection between rhetoric and delivery also feeds into disaffection with politics for many. And this discord on the left, is also felt as hostile by those of us who ask for better, and get told to wait.

                    • weka

                      "I often came here for the robust debate, but any critique about the current coalition government proposal or scheme, is treated as purely criticism and is stamped on."

                      What do you think would change this here?

                      I also wish that Labour would frame things more in terms of what they can and can't do and the limits of the coalition. Even the Greens seem less willing to do this now. I don't get it. There would be attempts to undermine them because of it, but it could be framed as democracy and working together.

                    • Sacha

                      my personal preference for politicians that ensure their words are considered and able to be delivered upon

                      Did you like the part of the clip where he was daring Ardern to call an election on the spot and she replied that she was not 12. 🙂

                    • lprent

                      As an observation. I don’t think that you’re getting stomped on. It is more like a overly mannerly slap with a damp facecloth.

                      It could be that authors on their own posts can define the topic that they wrote about and can shunt comments off topic to Open Mike or issue a warning. There is nothing as irritating to an author than having someone trash their hard work (and it is) with people trying to superimpose their ideas over the authors view of the their post. If you think that is the case here, then perhaps you should read the post again.

                      I suspect however you are merely having people (including the author) disagreeing with you. That is what the site is for. So far that appears to be what I'm seeing here.

                      But as always I'm always happy to demonstrate what stomping actually looks like if you really want it. I like educating people in unmannerly debate actually looks like when I have the time… 😈

                    • Molly

                      lprent – I meant more the discussion is stamped on, rather than myself as an individual, and while I note the point about authors posts, I actually was responding to weka's points she has been making about the lack of discussion on TS, and her wondering why.

                      Could've picked a better post for that I guess, but these PR activities didn't do much for me when John Key performed them, that doesn't change when it is our current PM.

                • weka

                  Thanks Molly. I think the difference there is that I can separate out the policies from the other aspects of being a politician. The video won't be to everyone's taste and I'm sure it just makes some people angry. I did think about whether to put the post up or not, and expected there it be criticism (which is fine). I watched and enjoyed it for the humour and seeing JA do this stuff so well, but I don't expect everyone to.

                  One of the things that concerns me is just how relentlessly critical the left is and how much we all support macho, tear 'em down politics. This has its place, but I'm so over the superficial position of 'if you like JA you must be a Labour apologist'. I'm finding the conversations here hard going at the moment, because so much of it is people not listening to each other and taking reactionary positions.

                  I think a lot about what the election will be like next year and how many of us are fucked off with Labour and how that will translate into public debate that is also going to be full of dirty politics and MSM feeding frenzies. Likewise the Greens. I'm writing a post about welfare atm and I almost prefaced it with saying that we should get all our anger out about Labour now, because next year we need them to win.

                  For me it's almost always about the strategy, and how what we say and do helps resolve the problems we think are important. Maybe people think what they say here doesn't matter, but I do. I think having one of the biggest left wing blogs in NZ in good shape next year plays a part in our democracy, and what authors and commenters do here is what will determine how we are next year as a blog.

                  • Molly

                    "For me it's almost always about the strategy, and how what we say and do helps resolve the problems we think are important. Maybe people think what they say here doesn't matter, but I do."

                    I understand that in terms of strategy, but the strategy for politics almost always seems to be in terms of appeasing the status quo. And for many the status quo, has become unbearable.

                    I think a strategy also should exist for dealing with those who have legitimate concerns about the effectiveness of policies or proposals, but any concerns are treated the same way as opposition talkpoints. That lack of listening doesn't bode well for a united front, and is easily manipulated.

                    • Sacha

                      How do we tell which concerns are 'legitimate'?

                    • weka

                      didn't quite follow that, do you mean that you think my strategy is based in appeasing the status quo?

                      "I think a strategy also should exist for dealing with those who have legitimate concerns about the effectiveness of policies or proposals, but any concerns are treated the same way as opposition talkpoints. That lack of listening doesn't bode well for a united front, and is easily manipulated."

                      Again, not quite sure who you are referring to there. Labour?

                    • Molly

                      " For me it's almost always about the strategy, and how what we say and do helps resolve the problems we think are important. "

                      I was kind of referring back to this sentence, about how the strategy not only needs to be concerned about the 'optics' of the left, but also about genuine willingness to engage with all those on the left, whether or not that engagement leads to policy. There is a lot of dismissal on this site for those that point out inefficiencies or problems with coalition government decision making. It is often regarded as unrealistic to expect transformative change. We have a government that spoke of kindness, but whose first significant action was to ensure the signing of the TPPA despite years of protests and concerns. I'm not really expecting transformative change from that government, but I'm also not going to unconditionally support them when I think they have made changes that will do nothing. If we could discuss issues of concern without being confrontational, then both the public discussion of issues and the Overton window for politicians to act would widen.

                      “How do we tell which concerns are ‘legitimate’?”
                      Sacha, listening and considering would be all that is required, don’t you think?

    • alwyn 3.3

      She is rehearsing for a new job after the election next year. It looks more and more as if she will need it.

      I think she may do very well as a stand up comedienne. It's a shame that she spends so much time practicing that she can't keep track of what her Government is up to though,

    • Sanctuary 3.4

      Too much bitter has been known to reduce your tolerance for the sweet.

    • Adrian Thornton 3.5

      @Rosemary McDonald, Yep same here, sure the graphic designers, boutique food makers etc I know seem to like her well enough, but none of my more working class friends like her or Labour for that matter, at all.

      As I have said a dozen times here, next time you go to a Labour meeting take a note on what percentage of the audience seem to be working class, I can tell you around here in the Bay, well under 10% in my estimation, that to me speaks volumes.

      • solkta 3.5.1

        that to me speaks volumes.

        Yes, it says that working class people need to get their shit together and join political parties.

        • Adrian Thornton 3.5.1.1

          They do when they are offered something they can believe in, so I would say it is Labour who need to get their shit together..in a big way.

          Except they won't because they are not a political party that is of the working classes any longer, they are now a party of the middle and managerial classes.

          But if you want to see what happens when you dare to speak the word "working class" and can be trusted by the working classes to stand and fight for them and their families look no further than Bernie Sanders…

          'What Momentum Looks Like': Sanders Becomes Fastest Presidential Candidate in History to Reach 4 Million Individual Donations

          https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/11/19/what-momentum-looks-sanders-becomes-fastest-presidential-candidate-history-reach-4

          • solkta 3.5.1.1.1

            Thanks for proving my point: when they are offered something they can believe in

            People need to make something to believe in not sit there bleating waiting for someone else to do it for them.

            • Adrian Thornton 3.5.1.1.1.1

              You must be living in some sort of fantasy world..people don't do that, that is exactly why so few poor and disenfranchised people don't vote, but they do when a politician like Sanders or Corbyn come along and help make them feel enfranchised to get out and not only vote but to donate their time and money, because as I said, and you seem to have bizarrely flipped on it's head …" when they are offered something they can believe in " they vote.

              Turn Labour Left!

              • solkta

                The only way to turn Labour left is through the membership. That is how political parties work. But lots just want to moan they no like Labour how it is. The working class has mobilised in the past. Study some history.

  4. Gosman 4

    I don't particularly like Jacinda Ardern's government or policies but kudos to her on that. It was an impressive bit of PR work.

    • Sacha 4.1

      It was. I appreciate how she managed to seem natural as opposed to a novelty performing seal in exchange for the spotlight.

  5. Gosman 5

    One thing that is unforgivable though. Ardern and Gayford look like they use Pre-cooked sausages!!! That is appalling.

  6. Stuart Munro. 6

    As a fisherman I found the lack of seafood disturbing – I thought Clark had that covered.

  7. McFlock 7

    I can actually understand Ardern's appeal. She seems smart and genuinely interested in people.

    There have been a few "popular" politicians over the years I never saw the appeal of – at best they had a bit of light blokey banter, but it always seemed to be a veneer (sometimes over some very unpleasant traits). Some other politicians come across as reserved (and often quite bland), with basically two settings to look important: "serious" and "grimly serious".

    • weka 7.1

      Genuinely interested in people will go a long way, especially when then dealing with serious issues like the Chch shootings.

    • ianmac 7.2

      Jacinda comes across as sincere about her life, her people and her credibility. Can't help comparing her with our two past PMs and the current leader of the Opposition and find those men seriously wanting.

      Who would I buy a second hand car from? Easy answer there.

  8. Pat 8

    I suspect the biggest problem for the PM will be the fact as an individual she is unable to effect the result she desires,,,the problem is not herself but the system within she operates and those she needs to perform …..I wonder how long she will be willing to be the face of a failure to deliver?

    • weka 8.1

      this is a good point. I think we also forget just how much was broken in the key years and how much of what the govt is doing in its first term is fixing this, or having to adapt around it.

      • Rosemary McDonald 8.1.1

        "…just how much was broken in the key years…"

        Err….you've surely not forgotten the nine years prior to those key years? And so on all the way back?

        That's why some were so desperate that they swallowed the whole "transformative" bullshit.

        Go back and listen to the spiel from 2017…they promised. They really did.

        • weka 8.1.1.1

          why the nine years before key and not the nine years before that? You know me well enough to know my politics on neoliberalism and I've written plenty about the issues of the Clark years.

          I remember 2017, but I was not one of the ones convinced.

        • Adrian Thornton 8.1.1.2

          "That's why some were so desperate that they swallowed the whole "transformative" bullshit." Yes that is exactly right, what amazes me is that so many serious people on this site, who are obviously deeply and authentically concerned about the issues of climate change, housing (renting), inequality, fair wages and conditions etc can't see that none of those issues will or could EVER be solved by the NZ Labour party as it exists today, even if they had five terms in office..in other words a political party that is guided in absolutely every decision it makes by an ideology of free market liberalism can't fix these problems, so by extension either can the supposed beloved Ardern, and that unfortunately for us and the planet is just a plain fact.

          • McFlock 8.1.1.2.1

            The 2017 election had 80% turnout.

            80% of voters voted for national or Labour.

            If the Greens aren't left enough for you by far, the Communist League and the Money Free parties don't even have enough members to register.

            The Democrats, MANA, TOP, and a variety of other parties with vaguely egalitarian values all failed to get 5%.

            What fertile soil is there for a Labour Party that has "turned left" enough to placate you?

            • The Al1en 8.1.1.2.1.1

              Ah, the inconvenient truth, that giant truth fly in the poll numbers ointment, the never answered question even the missing million can't muster an answer to.

              It would appear there are no real votes further left than the greens, the majorities in parliament come from switching enough soft red/blue votes to the other side. If it can be proved otherwise, have at it.

              • McFlock

                I'm more of an incrementalist – the dominant political parties move a policy idea, the idea gets credibility for voters because powerful parties promote popular ideas, not silly ones. But parties adopt the policies of their membership (usually with a large dose of filtering/moderation by the higher levels of the party on the grounds of electoral practicality). And there is a role for policy "champions" at the higher levels of the organisation/government – e.g. Anderton bugging Labour for kiwirail until it happened.

                But if the established party oversteps the mark, the voters' previous reluctance to support that policy is too great and actually sucks credibility from the party. Do that too many times and you end up in the toilet.

                It's a balancing act.

                • The Al1en

                  Electoral practicality is the key, and whether some people like it or not, incrementalism is the way to shift the centre ground in NZ politics. That doesn't mean there isn't a desire, or need, for radical changes, but walking on the fringes of political society is often a very lonely place, as Adrian probably knows.

                  • weka

                    How do you explain Labour in the 80s? That wasn't incremental. Don't think National in the 90s was either. Maybe NZ voters still haven't gotten over all that and thus don't trust so easily any more?

                    • Sacha

                      That is exactly why MMP happened.

                    • Pat

                      It wasnt incremental nor was it mandated

                    • The Al1en

                      Labour certainly paid a high political cost for those extreme policy jumps, which is sort of the point about sudden radical lurches.

                    • McFlock

                      Still paying that cost to this day, as you point out.

                      Especially as in 1990 National promised to reverse many of the Lab4 policies (Lockwood Smith signing a pledge to end the student loan scheme comes to mind). So in 1993 NZers voted to change the electoral system.

  9. There are troubles in my country, and sometimes we would like our government to fix some of them. There are wide range of options but nothing resembling a general agreement, nobody with a highly convincing silver bullet. That is a pity. But we have a leader who time and again has risen to the big occasion with charity and grace. She is very smart too. And for a small country to have a superstar prime minster is a real plus.

  10. mosa 10

    Off course Jacinda is not perfect but at least you can feel clean after you have watched her unlike her recent predecessors.

  11. Sabine 11

    Good grief, i hated the person worship of St. John, and i for sure don't have any use for the worship of St. Jacinda.

    Good grief, this is pathetic.

    • Sacha 11.1

      At least it's good grief, not the other sort. 🙂

    • observer 11.2

      As I said above, that is simply giving up on your critical faculties to superficial framing.

      Trump, "Boris", Blair, Obama, Trudeau junior, JFK and so on … it's the norm for media to be superficial. That's why politicians accept it. Otherwise they would all be Geoffrey Palmer – plenty of merit, very worthy, getting no votes.

      The tiny minority of political tragics (i.e. us) don't decide elections. Which is why candidates try and broaden their appeal.

      The question is not: "is that how they are presented?" but "is that all they are?". If you think Ardern has no other leadership qualities, then you're missing a great deal, and the Right's false framing has won. Might as well call her a "princess" and be done with it.

      • Sabine 11.2.1

        it seems to me that you – while you seemingly observe – don't see a lot.

        First of all i commented on the part of media and publics need to worship people no matter how inadequite and pathetic they are generally.

        Secondly, as for htis current Labour Goverment i am neither a fan nor do i hate them, i find them simply inadequite and pathetic, while i thought that the last National Government was criminally neglect and fully aware of that and pathetic.

        As for your question : Is that all they are. I can answer that fairly simply: YES!. And if they would be more then they are they would not need little gushing write ups such as this here or in the MSM and elsewhere.

        Cause Labour, while handing out band aids – kinder and gentler with some vaseline and red ribbons – has done nothing to change the root cause of what is ailing our society. And people are already calling her Princess (go figure), and the right to some extend has already won and this is due in my opinion to Labour being gutless while at the same time being full of cowardice.

        Sadly, they are still the better option to National, cause kinder gentler a tube of vaseline and a red ribbon. Luckily, and i say this from the bottom of the heart, i do depend neither on Nationals nor Labour largesse. The day i do i would consider myself thoroughly fucked – no matter if they apply vaseline or not.

        Cause so long as the unwashed masses fawn over faces they don't discuss issues.

      • Phil 11.2.2

        Otherwise they would all be Geoffrey Palmer – plenty of merit, very worthy, getting no votes.

        For all the intellectual and legal excellence, he didn't adequately address the Lange/Douglas-era baggage in the party and had the charisma of a cinderblock. Would have led Labour to an even worse defeat in 1990 than Moore did.

  12. Dean Reynolds 12

    I would favour Jacinda any day, rather than the brain dead yapping hyena who leads the National Party

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    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Kevin Moore, Associate Professor in Psychology & Tourism, Lincoln University: “For me, the big advantage of NZ Politics Daily is the breadth of opinion and sources it gathers. Together. There is always a mix of news reporting, news analysis, opinion pieces and blog posts. That breadth ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    8 hours ago
  • National is still very much the same Party even without Collins leading it… that’s the real issu...
    Judith Collins regarded Thatcher as “a personal hero” of hers. But like her hero though, it took the UK Conservative Party and their ideological counterparts here to get rid of both of them, from the inside. There’s a sort of bizarre symmetry to that really. Both were rather messy ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    18 hours ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #48
    Listing of articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, November 21, 2021 through Sat, November 27, 2021 The following articles sparked above average interest during the week: To Breed or Not to Breed?, The Vaccine for Fake News, Ten ways to confront the climate ...
    19 hours ago
  • A professor without honour in his own country
    Michael Corballis just three months before his death appeared in an interview on the Hui with Mihirangi Forbes. She made no effort to conceal her disdain for his defence of science and proceeded to lecture him on not knowing enough about mātauranga Maori to comment on it and accused him ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    20 hours ago
  • Businessman – and Political Novice
    The drums are beating – see Heather Du Plessis-Allan in today’s Herald – for Christopher Luxon’s bid to become National’s new (and latest) leader. It is conceded that he is a political tyro but – such is National’s current plight – it is suggested that he is a risk worth ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 day ago
  • No, Elizabeth Stuart Would Not Have Stopped the English Civil War (Probably)
    As you might have noticed, A Phuulish Fellow is a fairly eclectic blog. Even an organic one. I have my interests, and write about them as the fit takes me. And sometimes I stumble across an article I feel the need to comment on. Today, I ran across a ...
    2 days ago
  • Rumour Has It: A Númenórean Character List?
    Today we have another Amazon rumour on our hands. And for a change, it is not coming out of Fellowship of Fans. No, instead we have the following tweet doing the rounds, ostensibly listing (mostly) Númenórean characters and their code names. It’s an interesting leak, if true. And that’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Covid as Warriors
    The book I am currently working on – tentative title ‘In Open Seas’ – looks at the current and future New Zealand. One chapter describes the policy towards Covid using the trope of warfare. It covers an important period in our history but show how policy evolves and why, as ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    3 days ago
  • COVID-19: the B.1.1.529 variant – what do we know?
    There’s a lot of news about a new variant originally reported in southern Africa. Early signs have prompted calls for immediate precautionary blocks on travel from the region to restrict its spread. The WHO has called an emergency conference on this variant. Here’s a round-up of what we know so ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    3 days ago
  • National Party board denies it unanimously agreed to Collins’ Faustian bargain with Satan
    Sources close to party president Peter Goodfellow say he was totally blindsided by Collins’ claims he was party to this particular satanic ritual. National Party president Peter Goodfellow is today issuing a strong denial on behalf of the party’s board, saying they did not, at any point, agree to the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    3 days ago
  • The cost of optimism
    Yesterday the National Party imploded in a messy knife-fight that cost it its leader and probably one of the contenders. So naturally, the government has taken the opportunity to do a dump of its pandemic advice, including the Cabinet papers on its controversial decisions to repeatedly lower the Auckland alert ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National’s less than stellar choices
    Amid all the jostling in the National caucus ranks, spare a thought for Andrew Bayly. Who? Well might you ask. Plucked from obscurity by Judith Collin, elevated from number 18 to number 3 in the caucus rankings and given the Finance portfolio – a role in which he has been ...
    3 days ago
  • Are New Zealand’s universities doing enough to define the limits of academic freedom?
    Matheson Russell, University of Auckland   The news last week that University of Auckland public health researcher Simon Thornley was retracting a co-authored paper about supposed vaccination risks during pregnancy raised deeper questions about the limits of academic freedom. Thornley’s own head of department had called for the paper to ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 26 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Jean Drage, Political scientist specialist in local government: “With 78 local authorities and central government currently intent on reform, local government is a challenging area of research to keep on top of. Thank goodness for Bryce’s NZ’s Politics Daily. It is a gem, especially as it also ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    3 days ago
  • Josh Van Veen: Bridges is not the one
    Simon Bridges failed to bluff Judith Collins out of the leadership. A campaign to rehabilitate his image began shortly after the election and culminated in the publication of a memoir in August. There were persistent rumours of a deal with rival Christopher Luxon and MPs from the ‘liberal’ wing of ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    3 days ago
  • Smokefree cars – an important step towards protecting children from the hazards of smoking
    Richard Edwards, Jude Ball, Janet Hoek, George Thomson, Nick Wilson*  On November 28 new legislation to protect children from smoking and vaping in cars will come into force. This blog sets out the background and rationale for the new law, and discusses implementation, evaluation and the next steps to protect ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    3 days ago
  • Judith's Last Stand.
    Going Out With All Guns Blazing: Why didn’t Judith Collins stick with the strategy that had kept her, National’s most improbable of leaders, in power for more than a year? One might just as well ask why Rob Muldoon (that other unforgiving right-wing populist National Party leader) got drunk and ...
    3 days ago
  • Act’s Precarious Ascendancy.
    On The Lookout: It is easy to imagine how closely Seymour has been watching the National Opposition for the slightest sign of a Clark figure emerging. A respected politician, who enjoys broad support across the party and, much more importantly, who impresses the ordinary centre-right voter as having what it ...
    3 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #47, 2021
    104 articles by 574 contributing authors Physical science of climate change, effects Delayed impacts of Arctic sea-ice loss on Eurasian severe cold winters Jang et al. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres 10.1029/2021jd035286 Observations of climate change, effects Divergent responses of terrestrial carbon use efficiency to climate variation from 2000 ...
    3 days ago
  • Labour’s Eyes Wide Shut To “Unruly Tenants”.
    Not Seeing The Problem: They say there are none so blind as those who will not see. And, right now, Kāinga Ora is studiously not looking. It is clear to everyone that the Minister responsible, Poto Williams, has (like so many of her colleagues) been entirely captured by her officials. ...
    3 days ago
  • Is the mob coming for Charles Darwin?
    Richard Dawkins recently noted the giants of the past are being sanctimoniously judged by nonentities of the present whose only qualification is still being alive to do so. How will the future judge our own time when we are not around? Peter Franklin from Unherd examines whether the woke can ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Blowing a Hole in Your Own Wall: Idiotic Tampering with MIQ
    Managed Isolation/Quarantine has been a fact of life for New Zealand for eighteen months. It’s not popular – there are only so many spaces available at any given time, and the process is famously opaque – but it is the key to saving New Zealand from rampant Coronavirus. That, ...
    4 days ago
  • Now Labour wants secret trials
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • The end of a toxic leader
    If there's one thing that Judith Collins is usually good at, it's using scandalous information about other people to her advantage. Not above undermining her own political party, Collins has been known to even leak against her own fellow MPs, particularly those who posed a threat to her as the ...
    4 days ago
  • A transformative government in Germany
    Back in September Germans went to the polls, and handed the politicians a tough job, with no easy majorities for anyone. The Social Democrats, Free Democrats, and Greens agreed to work together in a "traffic light" coalition, but given their political differences (its basicly ACT/Greens/Labour), expectations for real change were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Political Harakiri
    The National party must always have known that they were taking a risk when they elected Judith Collins as leader. There were, after all, good reasons why they repeatedly declined to accept her candidature when she offered herself – as she frequently did. She was always an inappropriate person to ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • Thanksgiving advice, 2021: How to deal with climate change-denying Uncle Pete
    This is a re-post from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists by Richard Somerville “Birds of a feather flock together,” so I am sure that nearly all of those reading this article accept the main findings of climate science. Yet many people don’t. Instead, they believe a variety of climate ...
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the demotion of Simon Bridges
    So Simon Bridges has been bounced from the front bench and stripped of his shadow portfolio responsibilities for the crudely “inappropriate” comments that he allegedly made to a female colleague, Jacqui Dean – and personally apologised for – about five years ago. After years of mocking Labour for its supposed ...
    4 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 25 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Rosemary Wette, Associate Professor, Applied Linguistics, University of Auckland: “I’ve been browsing regularly through NZ Politics Daily for several months now. It gives me access to a range of views on current issues (helpfully organised by topic) that I wouldn’t otherwise have time to look up, or ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    4 days ago
  • The bizarre case of the Royal Society investigating academics defending science
    The Royal Society has begun a disciplinary investigation against a group of academics. The academics were defending science and in the past would have expected support from the Royal Society. The Free Speech Union has launched a campaign to defend the academics and academic freedom. Māori professor under investigation for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Ian Powell: Unionism and nursing in New Zealand
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    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Today’s constitutional disgrace in Parliament
    This Government has a problem with urgency. Critics from both left and right have long complained about their lack of urgency on issues such as climate change, housing, and inequality. Likewise, in terms of the Covid response, there’s been a chorus of criticism that Labour has been complacent and sluggish ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Vaping needs much tighter regulation as we approach Smokefree Aotearoa 2025: Two new studies
    Nick Wilson, Janet Hoek, Jennifer Summers, Driss Ait Ouakrim, Andrew Waa, Richard Edwards, Tony Blakely* Two recent studies provide new insights into the impact vaping may have on public health. The first estimates that use of modern vaping devices could be around a third as harmful to health as smoking. ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • Strange Defeat: A Guest Post By Dr. Chris Harris.
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    5 days ago
  • More than 147km – the transformative potential of the Wellington bike network plan
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    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 24 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Liz Brown, Senior communications advisor, Association of Salaried Medical Specialists: “The NZ Politics Daily is a fabulous resource providing a comprehensive one stop shop on what’s making news and how stories are being covered. I look forward to seeing it pop into my inbox every morning.” Anyone can sign ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Taking us for a ride
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: An industry in denial
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The “most open and transparent government ever” again
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on farmers playing the victim, plus Chile’s right turn
    Among the farming lobby groups, the good cop/bad cop routine has been working a treat. It suits Federated Farmers to keep daylight between itself and the Groundswell movement. Month in, year out the Federation continues to engage with the government over the very same water degradation/climate change regulations that Groundswell ...
    6 days ago
  • Important People
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    6 days ago
  • Parliament, the Courts and the end of three strikes (for now)
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    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    6 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 23 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Martyn Bradbury, Editor, The Daily Blog “’NZ Politics Daily’ is one of the most important news and political resources run in New Zealand. The expert collation of opinion and news makes it an invaluable day to day resource as well as an incredible treasure for researchers in the future. ...
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    6 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Emission Reduction Plan
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Dissing The Farmers.
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    6 days ago
  • How will carbon pricing impact inflation?
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    7 days ago
  • (Lack of) Public Service Announcement: The National Library of New Zealand, Internet Archive, and Al...
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    7 days ago
  • Game over for the HRPP
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Chinese influence and American hate diffusion.
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    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Real Interests Of The Country.
    Off Message: Into the extremely fraught relationship between Town and Country, the Groundswell organisers have blundered like an Aberdeen-Angus steer in an organic vege-shop. Unreasonably proud of their rural economic virtues, and dangerously forthright in their enumeration of the cities’ political vices, these Kiwi equivalents of America’s “good ole boys” ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 22 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Minna Reid, Law student, Victoria University of Wellington “As a Uni student, staying up to date with current affairs is always important. The Daily Politics & Democracy Project by Bryce Edwards is of great service for this. It offers varying news sources I would not have found myself ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Free speech is a people’s frank confession to itself
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    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #47
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    1 week ago
  • The F Words, by Barbara Gregorich
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    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • The Scourge of the Aimless Kick
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    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Delta Rocks Gibraltar: Lessons to be learned from Covid-19’s global resurgence.
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    1 week ago
  • I’ll take the masks and vaccines, thank you
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    1 week ago
  • Hell To Pay: The alarming similarities between the Anti-Vaccination Movement and the creators of the...
    Never Let Go: If the violent prejudices of the Jim Crow South, echoing through contemporary struggles, teach us anything, it is that the defence of rationality, science and progressivism must never be allowed to falter. Those pre-modern night-riders, filled with unrelenting hate, are still out there. If the troops of ...
    1 week ago
  • A Peak Out of Auckland? + Other Covid Musings
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    1 week ago
  • Sing Song about Hard Times
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    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • A good problem to have
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the politics of anger, plus a music playlist
    Angry? Are you talkin’ to ME? Of late, the Code Red levels of resentment inspired by the government’s Covid policy almost make one hanker for the days when people could write best-selling books about New Zealanders being The Passionless People. Not anymore. A hissy fit arms race seems to be ...
    1 week ago
  • No, vaccinated people are not ‘just as infectious’ as unvaccinated people if they get COVID
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Electric cars alone won’t save the planet. We’ll need to design cities so people can walk and cy...
    Timothy Welch, University of Auckland   At the COP26 climate summit, world politicians patted themselves on their backs for coming to a last-minute agreement. Humanity now waits with bated breath to see if countries implement the commitments they made, and if those commitments help the planet. If the rest of ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Worn down by bad news? You’re not alone…
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Alexander Gillespie, University of Waikato   Last week’s COVID protest outside parliament served as a warning that New Zealand is not immune to the kinds of anger seen overseas. As Labour Party whip Kieran McAnulty put it, “I think everyone needs to be aware that things are starting to escalate.” ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 19 November 2021
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    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Buying Back The Whenua.
    Dangerous Visionaries: Rex Connor wanted to “buy back the farm” (i.e. nationalise Australia’s mineral wealth) and ended up bringing down the government of Gough Whitlam. Nanaia Mahuta’s Three Waters Project is seen by many as a first step to “buying back the whenua” (repatriating Māori lands and waters). A policy which threatens the longevity of ...
    1 week ago
  • nuremberg, and history
      There’s a lot been said recently about the Nuremberg code. So what is it, and why is it popping up now? As described in this excellent NEJM article, the Code was developed over 80 years ago in August 1947, by judges involved in the “Doctors Trial” at Nuremberg. There were ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #46, 2021
    Housekeeping: New content New Research is primarily focused on reports published in "the academic literature." Thanks to a diversity of publishers, journals, editors, reviewers, researchers and institutional affiliations, such publications are statistically highly successful at approximating and reflecting our best dispassionate understanding of research topics. Any given personal agenda not ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Another OIA horror-story
    NewsHub reports on another OIA horror story, a simple request for information on the supply and distribution of PPE which required the intervention of the Ombudsman to get a response. And reading the article, it seems to be the usual story of an overly-secretive agency abusing the process to hide ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Traffic light levels announced
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    33 mins ago
  • New Ambassador to Russia announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Sarah Walsh as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Russia. “Aotearoa New Zealand and Russia have a long-standing relationship, engaging on a range of regional and global interests including disarmament and Antarctica issues. We also work together as members of the East ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • New Permanent Representative to the UN announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Carolyn Schwalger as Permanent Representative to the New Zealand Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York. “Aotearoa New Zealand is a founding member of the UN and we have worked hard to ensure our stance on human rights, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Further COVID-19 economic support for Cook Islands and Fiji announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced a further package of support for the Cook Islands and Fiji for COVID-19 economic support and recovery. “Aotearoa New Zealand remains committed to supporting our Pacific fanau and vuvale to respond to the impacts of COVID-19 on their economies, and move towards long-term ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New law will clear the air for tamariki in vehicles
    From today, it’s illegal to smoke or vape in most vehicles carrying children aged under 18 years old - whether the vehicle is moving or not. “Second-hand smoke poses an unacceptable risk to our tamariki and rangatahi,” Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall said. “We know children in vehicles ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Nine countries designated very high risk
    Nine southern African countries are being added to the very high risk countries list following public health advice around the newly discovered COVID-19 variant Omicron, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said. This afternoon, a public health risk assessment was carried out to assess the emerging evidence and any risk to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Foreign Affairs Minister concludes final stage of world trip
    Foreign Affairs Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta today departed North America to return home to Aotearoa, concluding the last stage of her 17-day world trip. The final leg of her trip saw her visit the United States of America and Canada for a number of high-level discussions. While in Washington D.C., ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Milestone launch of Pacific Languages Unit
    Today’s official launch of the Pacific Languages Unit is a milestone for our Pacific communities, the Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio said. The Pacific Languages Unit brings together a new set of language supports within the Ministry for Pacific Peoples to provide advice, commission research, maintain standards, promote ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Public Health Lecture – University of Otago
    Public Health - Lessons from New Zealand’s COVID-19 response and opportunities for the future E nga mana, E nga reo,                                          E nga iwi. Tēna koutou katoa. Ka huri ki nga mana whenua o te rohe nei. Tēna koutou. He mihi hoki ki a tatou kua tau mai nei I raro I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand statement on situation in Honiara, Solomon Islands
    Aotearoa New Zealand is deeply concerned by the events which have been unfolding in Honiara, Solomon Islands, since Wednesday. “New Zealand is a long-standing partner of Solomon Islands, and there are deep and enduring connections between our two countries,” Acting Foreign Affairs Minister David Parker said. “Our engagement in Solomon ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Nailed it! Over 500 apprentices get jobs boost
    Over 500 apprentices and cadets have been placed into work across New Zealand thanks to the Government’s booming build programme, that’s both constructing public houses, and maintaining older homes. Housing Minister Megan Woods announced the milestone today at a public housing construction site in Riccarton, Christchurch. “This Government’s investment in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Investment to support maternal mental health
    Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall has announced an investment to help expand maternal mental health services in five District Health Boards. “Supporting parent’s mental wellbeing during their child’s first 1000 days, from conception to two years of age, is critical to the long-term emotional, mental and physical wellbeing ...
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    ...
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