Tag Archives: General Politics

New Zealand is second last in the OECD for vaccinations | Instant News


Not only is New Zealand second bottom in the OECD for the number of Covid-19 vaccinations but in the information leaked to National, we are nowhere near the Government’s plans for us to return in January, National’s Covid-19 Response spokesperson Chris Bishop said.

“Leaked data shows that at the time of launch of this vaccine, a cumulative total of 390,413 vaccines should have been administered, but so far only 90,286 vaccines, or a miserable 23 percent.

“After promising New Zealanders, we are in the front line for the Covid-19 vaccine, almost every other country in the OECD is now ahead of us, with only Japan behind New Zealand.

“We are not at the front of the queue – we are at the back.”

As of yesterday, New Zealand gave only 1.9 doses per 100 people in our population.

The countries ahead of us include Australia (3.31 per 100 people), Singapore (25.95), United Kingdom (54.52) and the United States (50).

“Australia has recently been criticized for its slow vaccine rollout, but New Zealand is even worse off and there is no sign we will accelerate the pace,” Bishop said.

“National is very concerned about vaccine launches.

“Three of the four IT systems required for our rollout were not ready, DHB contracted their own ordering system solution with devastating results, the Government refused to set a target for the percentage of the population to be vaccinated, and we are still unclear who will be vaccinated when.

“The government hasn’t even started a proper communication campaign to educate New Zealanders about vaccines. New Zealand’s economic and social future rests on a successful vaccine roll.

“The public must have daily access to how we are progressing in the launch of our Covid vaccine, they don’t have to rely on information leaking to the Opposition.

“As more and more countries vaccinate their populations, New Zealand risks falling behind. They will start to open up trade and travel with each other while we, a country where our prosperity depends on international connections, will fall behind.

“The elimination of Covid-19 in New Zealand should be an opportunity for us to recover faster than any other country in the world. We run the risk of squandering this through slow, ineffective launches. “

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New Zealand Residents Get Fungus Treatment On Vaccination | Instant News


“How surprising it is that the Australian Health Minister finds himself having to defend his Government which only vaccines 670,000 Australians when New Zealand has managed less than 10 percent of that number,” said ACT Chairman David Seymour.

“The difference between Australia and New Zealand is not just how well they do the comparisons, but how much pressure their Governments are taking on not meeting their targets.

“Why is the difference? Part of the reason is that Jacinda Ardern’s Government didn’t have a target – at least not one they wanted to publish.

“We were just told vague things by the ministers like ‘we are making good progress in group 1’ and ‘this is a good and solid start.’

“This is a completely meaningless statement that won’t hold the water any longer.

“It is time for the Government to stop treating people like mushrooms – leaving them in the dark and feeding them excrement.

“Seven days ago ACT showed that 12.2 million people are being vaccinated daily worldwide, which if the level remains static means 2.85 billion people will be inoculated six months later.

“But we noted that the daily rate would not remain static – at that time it was growing by about a million more doses per day per week.

“What difference did it make in the week – today it is up by three million to 15.2 million.

“If that figure remains static by September, more than 3 billion people will be vaccinated, close to half of the people on the planet, and the majority of those who qualify for vaccination because most countries don’t vaccinate under the age of 16.

“But again, this figure won’t remain static, it will continue to increase.

“So where will New Zealand be in September?” No one knows. The government can’t tell us. They are terrified because they are being held accountable.

“What we do know is that nobody believes the majority of New Zealanders will be vaccinated in 2021. We are now too far behind eight balls.

“The vaccination launch is treated like a provincial cottage industry rather than a de force industrial tour. Potential vaccinators still don’t know if they will be asked to participate, no centralized ordering system is working, and prototypes don’t work on mobile.

“New Zealand is amateur drama while most of the rest of the world is West End or Broadway. With the utmost respect, we must not be second to last in the OECD to vaccinate, nor should we vaccinate fewer people than Zimbabwe or Guatemala.

“Sometimes it feels bad to be a right – especially now with so much at stake – but ACT has warned New Zealand about this since early January, when the Government and the Ministry of Health were on a long holiday.

“In January 6th we call for a review of the vaccine schedule, etc January 20, we said that the public deserves clarity and consistency in the timing of vaccines.

“Since then we have published a
COVID 2.0 Response Plan which has been well received by health professionals but completely ignored by the Government.

“New Zealand needs a plan. This response needs to engage the private sector rather than avoid it. It needs to embrace technology. COVID will be with us for many years and its variants will complicate the response. Where we stand today, it feels so precarious that we went from here to zero. “

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Doing Business in New Zealand Just Became More Risk | Instant News


Wellington (Friday, 26 March 2021):
The Government’s announcement of a new housing policy on Tuesday has just made New Zealand a much riskier place to do business, warned a policy paper released today by The New Zealand Initiative.

A risky place to do business, written by Dr Eric Crampton and Dr Bryce Wilkinson does not assess the impact of this policy, but warns of the consequences of this policy-making approach.

Substantial changes to tax policy, as marked in this announcement, are blinding many and appear to backtrack on promises made by Treasury Secretary Grant Robertson before the election when he said no new taxes would be enforced.

Important changes in tax policy need to be well analyzed and well signaled. These complex policies require expert advice and consultation and perhaps most importantly, sufficient time to address the implications of change as they work through the economy.

Worryingly, despite the significance of the proposed tax changes, the Ministry of Finance did not provide an analysis of the likely impact, saying it did not have time to provide a proper assessment.

The Initiative’s Chief Economist Dr Eric Crampton said, “Passing substantial legislation with insufficient opportunity to examine its effects risks not only unpredictable and inferior outcomes but also strongly signals that New Zealand’s policy environment is inherently unstable.”

Read us
Policy Point: A risky place to do business

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New Zealand’s Tigray Community Wants an End to Human Rights Abuses in Ethiopia | Instant News


Members of New Zealand’s Ethiopian Tigray community held a national rally this Thursday to call for an end to conflicts and human rights abuses in their home countries.

Last month UN Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide said there were reports of “extrajudicial killings, sexual violence, looting of property, mass executions and impeded access to humanity” in Ethiopia. More than 27,000 people have fled and fled to Sudan already. Media
and NGOs
has documented atrocities.

The Ethiopian community in New Zealand is small, only a few 1,600 people. Many came to New Zealand as refugees after a conflict with Eritrea resulting in tens of thousands of deaths and displaced people.

Wellington rally organizer Rahwa Hagos said the current conflict in his home country was much worse than the war 30 years ago; and attacks on Tigray’s men alone.

“People in Ethiopia who also experienced the last war have expressed their horror at what is happening now – it is much worse than ever before.”

Ms Hagos said most of New Zealand’s Tigrayan Ethiopians have close family members in the Tigray region who are suffering.

“Some of us had family members killed. Some waited two painful months before hearing back from home; others still can’t reach close family members, ”said Hagos.

“They’re starving, can’t access bank accounts, there’s no medicine available, living in fear of being looted and killed.”

The conflict has sadly created a rift in New Zealand’s Ethiopian community, with some non-Tigrayan people supporting government action in the region.

“This has created a huge rift between Ethiopian and Eritrean people with a lack of sympathy and trust. Everyone was shocked by this after being one family for so many years. “

Ms Hagos said they wanted the war to end: “We want the New Zealand Government to do everything in its power to pressure the Ethiopian government to allow access to humanitarian aid. And to stop the war. “

It is also very helpful for other New Zealanders to know what’s going on in their community and in their home country, said Hagos.

“It is very helpful for people to realize that our parents, sisters, uncles, cousins, are there and suffering, and that we are suffering with them. The international media covered the news that left Tigray, but very little was featured in New Zealand. “

All those who support an end to the suffering of the Tigrayan people are welcome to attend the demonstration.

RALLY DETAILS

Thursday, March 25th Meet at 10 am in Civic Square, walk to Parliament, invite MPs and members of the Tigray community to speak.

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The government has announced a housing package that will increase the supply of homes and remove incentives for speculators, in order to create a more sustainable housing market.
“This is an urgent, long-term package of action that will increase housing supply, reduce pressure on the market and make it easier for first-time homebuyers,” said Jacinda Ardern.
Others >>

The Australian and New Zealand governments today reiterated their grave concern about the growing number of credible reports of gross human rights violations against the Uighurs and other Muslim minorities in Xinjiang.
In particular, there is clear evidence of gross human rights violations which include restrictions on religious freedom, mass surveillance, large-scale extra-judicial detention, forced labor and forced birth control, including sterilization … Others >>

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Address to Business CEOs Forum of Large New Zealand Group Companies | Instant News


Thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today.

I think this is a great opportunity for you to meet ACT’s Deputy Leader, Brooke van Velden, and see that ACT is no longer ‘just David’.

In psychology they talk a lot about restraint. You might think of the ACT as one of the parties that has the extraordinary results. Regression to the mean tells you that the next ACT result must be worse than the last.

Here’s another anchor. Emmanuel Macron is founded Work on April 6, 2016. He became President Macron on May 7, 2017. One year, one month, one day later. Macron is an outcast but he reminds us that politics is anarchist, and more so than usual today.

Last week the Labor Party in Western Australia won only 50 out of 60 seats. I heard the first phone call from Vladimir Putin, asking how they did it.

At ACT our goal is to double again in two and a half years. If you look from the outside, there’s no reason we can’t become Government in two and a half years.

Honest conversation

One of our greatest assets is our goal. We are here to make sure New Zealand has the best public policies in the world. Each MP ACT has this in their respective offices.

It goes on to say that: “We represent New Zealanders who believe in personal freedom. We raise the bar for lawmaking by holding Governments accountable and proposing better solutions. We focus on the concerns and aspirations of voters, not other politicians. “

ACT believes New Zealand is very lacking in honest conversation. It’s not just here. According to people who measure these things, like the Freedom House, democracy is in decline around the world. Authoritarianism is back, and if you live your whole life thinking liberal democracy has won, it’s frankly scary.

Just this morning I heard Sir Peter Gluckman on the radio, say that local democratically elected councilors are simply not ready to make technical decisions. He’s talking about fluoridation, and he’s probably right on this issue. However, the casual and unchallenged dismissal of democracy is an extraordinary sign of the times.

There appear to be difficulties in processing critical information through the democratic process. New Zealand’s COVID response and political response to it are classic examples of miscategory.

New Zealand’s results were extraordinary, almost unmatched. However, the credit provided by voters to the Government for their response is out of proportion to the effectiveness of the response.

I am not going to practice all the reasons why the New Zealand Government has an easier job than others. Suffice it to say that, when I challenged the Minister for COVID-19 to name a country hit by the pandemic with the bigger initial advantage, he couldn’t.

I’ll also give you reasons why I don’t think the Government’s response has been very effective. One example is sufficient. The performance of contact tracing during the Valentine’s Day outbreak, which is end-to-end tracking from identifying, testing, to deactivating contact, hit about 50 percent in four days. That’s less than the 80 percent target and no better than last August’s outbreak.

The COVID-19 problem is an extreme case of the disconnect between political popularity and measured outcomes. We know from recent experience that the Government can oversee:

  • Anemic productivity growth
  • Dropping scores in international student assessments (although domestic graduation rates are increasing)
  • Huge infrastructure deficit in terms of maintenance and capacity
  • An uncontrolled housing market eats up the income of the poorest people, except for the homeless
  • Health care system with flat productivity and access to medicine that was rare in the first world
  • Fiscal commitments that are totally unsustainable and there is no desire to deal with them

All of this without a credible strategy to fix. In some cases, the Prime Minister can publicly downplay the problem, or in other cases make it worse.

And that’s just the Key Government.

Now things are getting worse faster.

The lost market

The real problem is an old one. There is a lost market for honest conversation in politics.

Imagine that you go to a restaurant, look at the menu, choose carefully, then come up with something completely different. That’s how we rolled, the waiter explained. You don’t get your choice. Everyone gets the most popular choices.

The next time you come back, you pick the first thing you see, sit back, and try to enjoy whatever you get.

You come back one last time and there are no menus. ‘Well, no one seemed to care about their choice, so we stopped offering options.’

In short, the economy of public choice. The customer is picky, the menu is the manifesto of policy, the waiter is the candidate, the food is the policy, and the results are not as good as they could be.

I know about the lost market. Only one outlet covered my book on public policy. As I dance, play basketball, and jump off planes, every media outlet covers it.

Egg shell culture

The lost market has been with us for a long time, but what I call eggshell culture seems to make things worse.

I heard someone last week sum up something I think a lot of people feel. He said: “It should be a time of enlightenment, but you have to walk on eggshells with everything you say.”

Our researcher, whose job was to persuade focus group participants to express their true feelings, told us that it has never been easier. People feel for each other longer, seeking initial approval for their views.

Freedom of speech is a human right, but it is also an important tool for society to solve its problems. If the Government did introduce the so-called Hate Speech law, it would only make matters worse.

I don’t fully understand what drives eggshell culture. What I do know is that as long as we believe identity is more important than action, as long as we are formed in a hierarchy of victims, then we will find it much more difficult to solve problems collectively.

So what now?

If we want better public policy, then we face several challenges. There is a lost market for the honest conversation we need, and a growing number of people are too afraid to speak at all.

ACT’s proposition is that we can win politically with an honest conversation mantra. We have proven this by the fact that we are here in greater numbers.

We’re honest about the government’s hasty gun laws. It’s not about guns. It’s about the law.

We are honest about free speech. Sometimes people who say disgusting and offensive things deserve our protection because protecting their freedom of speech protects all of us.

We are honest about the suffering some New Zealanders face at the end of their lives, and are making a difference. Now New Zealanders who are suffering at the end of their lives have the option of continuing their relationship with their time.

We are an honest intermediary during the COVID crisis, saying that the role of the opposition is to provide constructive criticism where necessary and useful advice where possible.

The interesting thing is that it worked, and I think there will be more ACT votes coming.

Our campaign director, who is a foreigner, was taken aback by our exit poll. We clean five percent in every Territorial Local Authority except Wellington, where we get 4.8. We cleared five across nearly every demographic. Age, race, region – we did it.

Our support does not look like the profile of a small right-wing party, but the foundation of a large tent with opportunities for growth. I feel it anecdotally in the variety of people who come to me.

A scenario

The most sensible way to change Government is for the ACT and National to take 18 seats and pull back the 61-33 deficit. We are ready to do the hard work on this.

People think that ACT can only get votes from people who previously voted for National. That is wrong. In the Epsom electoral district, a quarter of the people who cast the Party’s Voice for Workers cast Voters’ Voters to ACT.

I think ACT can do well, but how about being right as a whole can work well. I think it can be easy and unexpected.

I have known Jacinda Ardern for a decade. He is warm and sincere. He sincerely wants to help everyone he meets. The only problem was, he didn’t know how.

When times are good, it doesn’t matter. During his tenure, interest rates fell and unemployment was low. Even if those factors are bad, there is always reliable crisis management.

More importantly, there are no better communicators in world politics today. The problem is, when your mortgage is getting expensive or you don’t have a job, and the crisis ends everywhere except here, all that communication is just annoying.

After that, there was another bit of depth, and things could move very fast.

But for what?

From the point of view of someone desiring change, two things can go wrong. The first is that the current Government will be re-elected. The second, and this is much more common in our history, is that there has been a change in Government but it is only a change of personnel without a change of direction.

ACT is here to fix both of these problems. We are here to change Government and direction.

What will the government be like with more ACT in it? In short, honest conversation leads to well-defined problems and real reforms. What does it look like?

  • A shift from redistribution to productivity as an underlying policy focus, for example
  • Regulatory reform with a referendum on the Regulation Standard Bill
  • Structural reforms in mental health education and funding
  • Liberalization of Foreign Investment
  • The first principle of resource management law reform
  • Climate policy is based on markets and individual choices rather than central planning, because the latter is unsustainable

Conclusion

My job is to provide you with vivid representation options. If you want to pick someone with a proven track record of real changes made with almost no resources, this is us.

We understand the fundamental problem of obtaining complex policy change in a democratic market. We know that it’s more difficult now than usual thanks to the eggshell culture.

But we are also very ambitious. We feel very fortunate to have been born in this country at this time. We think New Zealand’s policy setting is worth investing in. We need to keep things good.

If you feel the same, then I hope you will choose ACT.

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