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Dr Muriel Newman

The Lockdown Week 3

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As we end the third week of the Government’s State of Emergency 28-day lockdown, it becomes easier to imagine what it would be like living under socialist rule in a Police State.

In a BBC interview, the former British Supreme Court Judge Lord Sumption warns that lockdowns represent an ‘hysterical slide into a police state’: “The real problem is that when human societies lose their freedom, it’s not usually because tyrants have taken it away. It’s usually because people willingly surrender their freedom in return for protection against some external threat. And the threat is usually real but exaggerated.”

There’s no question that the threat from COVID-19 in New Zealand has been exaggerated by Prime Minister Ardern and her Government to justify the imposition of State rule. Her doomsday predictions of “tens of thousands of deaths”, based on ‘worst-case’ computer modelling, helped shock the nation into compliance. 

Lord Sumption asks the question that’s now on everyone’s mind – is the cure worse than the disease: “Is this serious enough to warrant putting most of our population into house imprisonment, wrecking our economy for an indefinite period, destroying businesses that honest and hardworking people have taken years to build up, saddling future generations with debt, depression, stress, heart attacks, suicides and unbelievable distress inflicted on millions of people who are not especially vulnerable and will suffer only mild symptoms or none at all?”

The former Judge reminds us that at times like this, when our democratic safeguards have been suspended, it’s our duty to question authorities and hold them to account. 

As new information becomes available about the virus, it’s therefore crucial that we challenge the Government’s actions.

Back in January, they told us the New Zealand Influenza Pandemic Plan had been enacted to protect the country from the new coronavirus. That plan sets out three main goals. Firstly, a human goal to “minimise the impact of the disease and mitigate its effects”. Secondly a social goal to keep society functioning “as normally as possible during and after a pandemic”. And thirdly an economic goal to “minimise and mitigate the economic consequences of a pandemic”.

By making the radical decision to ignore the social and economic goals, in order to eliminate the virus through a nation-wide lockdown, the Ardern Government is disrupting society and damaging the economy to such an extent, that New Zealand will face not just a recession, but a prolonged and deep depression.

As April’s editorial in the New Zealand Medical Journal explains, “This elimination strategy is a major departure from pandemic influenza mitigation. With the mitigation strategy, the response is increased as the pandemic progresses and more demanding interventions such as school closures are introduced later to ‘flatten the curve.’ Elimination partly reverses the order by introducing strong measures at the start in an effort to prevent introduction and local transmission of an exotic pathogen…”  

The editorial claims “New Zealand society has made a large ‘upfront’ sacrifice in pursuing an elimination strategy” – since the risks “may be substantial” and success “is far from certain”.

With influenza-type viruses usually regarded as far too contagious to be contained, the article would have been more accurate if it had pointed out that the decision to sacrifice New Zealand society by pursuing this high-risk elimination strategy rests with the Prime Minister.    

Not everyone thinks elimination can work. 

Professor Knut Wittkowski, formerly of New York’s Rockefeller University, is an epidemiologist with 35 years of experience. In a fascinating interview, he explains that the only way to stop influenza-type viruses is through building herd immunity within a population:

“With all respiratory diseases, the only thing that stops the disease is herd immunity. About 80% of the people need to have had contact with the virus, and the majority of them won’t even have recognized that they were infected, or they had very, very mild symptoms, especially if they are children. So, it’s very important to keep the schools open and kids mingling to spread the virus to get herd immunity as fast as possible, and then the elderly people, who should be separated, and the nursing homes should be closed during that time, can come back and meet their children and grandchildren after about 4 weeks when the virus has been exterminated….”

He warns that by trying to eliminate the virus, restrictions will need to be re-introduced whenever a new outbreak occurs, prolonging social disruption and economic hardship. Worse, those who are the most vulnerable – the elderly and anyone with chronic health conditions – will remain at serious risk of infection until a vaccine becomes available.

In pursing elimination, the Professor says that governments like ours have got it wrong. Instead of locking down the nation and trying to stamp out a virus that he believes cannot effectively be contained, we should be quarantining and supporting those who are vulnerable to keep them safe, while enabling the rest of society to get back to normal. In that way, within a month or so, once herd immunity has developed, not only will it be safe for those vulnerable groups to re-enter society, but our borders can also re-open.

Professor Wittkowski describes COVID-19 as ‘another bad flu’ – albeit one that can have grave consequences for the vulnerable.

But in reality, that’s also the case with the seasonal flu, since every year it kills upwards of 500 vulnerable New Zealanders – predominantly the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. 

Professor Wittkowski also believes the public are being far too docile: “People should talk with their politicians, question them, and ask them to explain, because if people don’t stand up to their rights, their rights will be forgotten.”

Challenging the Government’s actions is exactly what a group of New Zealand academics and public health experts are now doing: “The way we stop the spread of an epidemic virus strain must be proportionate to the threat posed by the infection… Prolonged lockdown is likely to cause greater harm than the virus to the nation’s long-term health and well-being, social fabric, economy, and education.”

They too believe much of the modelling was overestimated, with new data now showing the virus is not the disaster we feared and no deaths of New Zealanders under the age of 70.

They warn “Elimination of this virus is likely not achievable and will be almost impossible to sustain as the virus is likely to become endemic across the rest of the world.”

As a result, they propose moving to a risk-based management plan aimed at preventing stress on the health system. Anyone who is low risk would be able to return to normal activities, while state-funded support would be provided to those at high risk of complications – namely the elderly and those with chronic medical conditions – to enable them to remain in isolation until it’s safe to re-enter society. 

The ease with which New Zealand’s lockdown was imposed is a major concern to this week’s NZCPR Guest Commentator, former Judge and law lecturer Anthony Willy. He explains that for the first time in our history we have lost the rights and freedoms set out in our Bill of Rights – including the freedom of association, the freedom of movement, the right not to be arbitrarily detained, and the right to live in a Parliamentary democracy:

“In a sinister twist loss of these rights is backed by an apparently highly popular government-encouraged scheme of dobbing in one’s neighbour for possible infractions. At the time of the fall of the Berlin wall it was estimated that the membership of the Stasi was about 80,000 but that many times this number were unpaid informants assisting the Stasi to protect the state from infection with the very ideas and principles the government has suspended. It is impossible to know just what is the overriding public interest which supports this unprecedented government action. It might be the preservation of life; it might be to allow the health system to continue to function smoothly. It might be to save people from themselves, and from the negligence of others. None of this was thought to be necessary during the other Chinese virus scares – SAARS or Avian Flu or swine fever – so why now? Perhaps the Government has abrogated its duty to govern to the panicked computer modelling of some ‘experts’, forecasting terrifying death rates, much of which is already demonstrated to be hopelessly inaccurate.”

He warns that through their actions, this Government may have set a dangerous precedent: “There is nothing a lawyer or legislator likes more than a precedent. Once established it never goes away. The whole development of the common law and the liberties it supports rests on precedent. The law is what Courts say it is on up the hierarchy until it reaches Parliament which is the highest Court in the land. So, we now have it established that a fear of widespread infection in the community of a virulent disease is sufficient to lock people up in their homes and suspend Parliament. Really! This not the first such plague to affect New Zealand and it will not be the last. Yet this is the first time our civil liberties and our democracy have been suspended in order to minimise its effect on public health.”

Of course, environmental fanatics have long been pressuring the Government to declare a state of emergency over clime change. Now that we understand how easy it is to impose one, can we be confident that in the future our Prime Minister won’t decree climate change – which she has already described as her generation’s ‘nuclear free moment’ – to be as catastrophic as COVID-19 and require similar state of emergency controls?

Finally, while the country has been focussed on health, the lockdown, and the plight of the economy, there have been new developments regarding tribal claims for our coastline.

You may recall, that just before the April 3, 2017 deadline for claims under the Marine and Coastal Area Act, almost 600 applications were lodged covering the entire coastline. Some 200 were High Court claims, and 387 were for direct negotiation with the Minister of Treaty Settlements under the Crown Engagement pathway.

Now, three years later, a Draft Crown Engagement Strategy has finally been released, seeking claimant feedback by April 24.  

The strategy recommends that 175 of the Crown Engagement claims, which were also lodged in the High Court, should be deferred until after the Court hearings.

It suggests the rest of the claims should be grouped geographically with those in the Gisborne and New Plymouth regions to be decided first, between 2020 and 2023.

Under the Minister’s proposed timetable it will take 20 to 30 years for the claims to be resolved!

A separate discussion document, also seeking claimant feedback by April 24, asks whether the taxpayer funded assistance for the claims process is sufficient: up to $412,000 is available for Crown Engagement cases and up to $312,000 for the High Court.

Taxpayer funding has also now been allocated to enable claimants to appeal High Court decisions, to the High Court, the Court of Appeal, and the Supreme Court – $92,000 for appeals made by claimants, and $139,000 for appeals made by those with ‘overlapping’ claims.

In addition, $70,000, is now available to help tribal groups prepare submissions on Crown Engagement claims.

While the Minister promised a process would be put in place to allow the public to also make submissions on Crown Engagement claims, no details have been published as yet.

With hundreds of overlapping claims, hundreds of millions of dollars in claimant funding, and timeframes stretching out for decades, it’s increasingly clear that this foreshore and seabed gravy train will never end.

These are troubling times. Our democratic nation, built on independence, liberty, and equality, is now governed by those who encourage State informants, who give legal and financial privilege based on race, and who have used their power to suspend our basic rights and freedoms – even Parliamentary democracy itself.

As we look to the future, it’s hard to shake a sense of foreboding.


*Do you believe the Government’s attempt to ‘eliminate’ COVID-19 from New Zealand is the right approach?


*Poll comments are posted below.


*All NZCPR poll results can be seen in the Archive.


Click to view x 120


Too late with quarantining and too slow to allow the economy to recover. A better return to work strategy is required. Craig
The lockdown was PREMATURE and people who agree with the unnecessary lockdown need to pull their heads out of the sand and look at C-19 facts and statistics worldwide 1,567,421 (97%) people in MILD CONDITION (worldometers.info) Look further and the stats show NZ is similar to other countries for deaths per million who haven%u2019t locked down. We were never going to be like Italy as the PM insinuated scaremongering the public and to justify the lockdown. The reality is that there are fatalities to those at high risk and sadly because infected carriers i.e. travellers or associates didn’t self isolate which have caused avoidable deaths. This is where priorities should have been, not a lockdown. Worldwide stats at lockdown were 80% mild cases (97% today) but the government still initiated the lockdown obviously in the fear of not containing it (due to their delayed actions and gross exaggeration of predicted deaths) to the detriment of Kiwi livelihoods and at a cost to the economy. Was it about saving lives or saving their own backs, or gaining political votes for saving unpredictable kiwi deaths? Yes, unpredictable to say the least…not based on sound facts such as mild cases where was common Covid 19 sense? As for the meagre 20% salary cut…why didn’t they follow employers who made up salary differences at the onset. Is the gesture now because they realise the impact on the living and about ‘saving face’ (sadly three weeks late). The government should have been KIND enough to put themselves in the same shoes as those who have lost work and income with their DECISIVE lockdown decision…HUGE, HISTORICAL…STAY SAFE, SAVE LIVES were the PM’s literal words that now resonate in lives, business’s, and the economy that have been sacrificed, not kept safe, and not saved! Ben
It can never be eliminated unless the whole world has the same goal. Chandra
I don’t believe anything this Government does is the right approach. Everything reminds me of the time I spent in the old East Germany after the wall came down. The stories I heard at the canteen table would make a right thinker’s hair Curl!! Jim
I have always thought we need some exposure to the virus to become immune to it as a population. Jens
The government has played it safe and has most Kiwis’ support. Far better to avoid the virus than risk permanent liver or kidney damage for all we know. I’m grateful for great progress to date. Jonathan
This approach will ruin the country and people’s lives. Unfortunately there are some in so-called higher places that want this to happen and are going to profit greatly from it. Ian
Initially the lockdown was a reasonable approach to an unpredictable threat, Arderns response thereafter will determine the future wealth of our country. A lot of chickens are coming home to roost. Trading & trusting China whose objective is the destruction of western civilisation is a dangerous game to play. The National and Labour political parties chose that path over others and has put its citizens in a bad place. China caused this problem and stripped NZ and our allies of essential protective equipment before they and W.H.O. admitted the danger their virus posed – they intentionally allowed it to spread internationally whilst isolating Wuhan. We don’t need to associate with China just as we didn’t need to associate with Stalin, Hitler and Japan when we we knew their leaderships were evil. Rex
Completely wrong. No other virus in history has been eliminated they still exist. Herd immunity is required by exposure with most at risk isolated. Economic pressure far worse than the ‘virus’ Alan
jacindageddon Ron
This is a virus we are talking about here. The flu is a virus, and it cannot be eliminated, only mitigated. It is not worth the destruction of the economy to shut the country down. There are existing drugs that are effective against the CCP Virus. This has been known since last year, yet has been resisted strongly in the US, only because Trump highlighted it. hydroxychloroquine has been shown to aid recovery, even in the elderly. Douglas Pharma are currently manufacturing hydroxychloroquine and it is very cheap to produce. Clearly, for anyone with a brain, this is a first line of treatment, so I can’t understand all the negative that is being attached to it. It works, and our health system needs to get it into their inventory now. Time to end this lock down. What the public are not being told is that all the deaths, 8, have all been elderly over the age of 70 with underlying medical problems, so the CCP virus had the same effect as the flu may have. Neil
Miss Ardern and her advisors have obviously taken no notice of what is being achieved by Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong. All of these nation have elected not to lock the country down but to protect those at greater risk, require supervised isolation of those testing positive, and undertaking a vigorous tracking and detection system. They have not chosen to create a Police State (but i guess this would be right in line with the beliefs of an ex-president of the International Union of Socialist Youth, where they are all addressed as “Comrade”. I am not her “Comrade”. A Comrade is one who served with me in the Army and in action – not a person who continues to reduce my democratic privileges, whilst tearing our countries economy apart to the extent that my great-great-great grandchildren will still be trying to recover from the mess being created. Her dependance on unproven models (that appear to be gross exaggerations of the impact of the virus) to justify the imposition of a police state, encourage the country’s citizens to become agents of the state and police informants to report violations of the regulations she has imposed (Oh how proud Stalin and likes of Honecker, Krenz and Gerlach would be). How can it be that South Korea has a confirmed infection rate of 0.00021% of its population, Hong Kong has a 0.000134% confirmed rate ( Taiwan is even lower) and none of theses nations have imposed a complete lock down of its economy. They introduced some restriction but they have made a massive effort in detection and isolation. Singapore has a higher infection rate of 0.00102%, with a death rate of 11. By comparison New Zealand has an infection rate of 0.000287% of our population, a death rate of 11, and a stuffed economy. How can anyone believe our Government have got it right? But then again a supposed majority also believed the false science put out by Generation Zero and accepted and endorsed by the Greens (Mr Shaw said they wrote the policy), and the Labour Party, accompanied by the acquiescence of the National Party. Interesting to note, the same belief in false, unproven, and entirely exaggerated models was used to justify the creation of the Zero Carbon Act. Perhaps there are also other reasons for Miss Ardern to remove semi-automatic weapons from the hands of clearly inept, ignorant and untrusted citizens? I conclude in stating that the findings and recommendations of Professor Knut Wittkowski should taken to heart by our so-called democratic Parliament, but I know it will not be as it does not agree with Miss Ardern’s, her party’s and the Green’s agenda. Michael
Of course they did, ideaology socialist dreamers who think their marxist dreams have come to fruition ! Keith
Obviously the actual agenda of the government completely forgot about the economy when the lock-down is relax. – That tell me they conveniently ignore that to crash the economy, leave everybody vulnerable and susceptible for a ‘police state’ , or a socialist government —- see what happened everywhere in the world, throughout history when socialism came in power….. Anna
With only 11 deaths of elderly people from Old Age Homes, it proves that their original estimate of 80 000 deaths were wrong. Pierre
It is a chance for Jacinda to grandstand and keep us under her and Labour’s control. They have no idea what they are doing and soon the country will be bankrupt not that they seem to care. What is next mandatory testing and vaccination? Fraser
It has stopped Virus spreading to a certain extent, but definitely the MOST EXPENSIVE solution. 11 people died, all in age group 70 , 80 and 90 , and all from old age / care giving homes. I am anxiously waiting to see what Jacinda is going to do to Our Taxes after this spurt of her compulsive spending !! GST 20 or 25 % ?? Pierre
Return to Level 2 immediately to match Australia Michael
A virus cannot be “eliminated”, but its effects can be “mitigated”. Our borders should have been tightly closed off earlier as too many people came in from overseas who were not tested adequately. The government’s approach is hugely damaging to the economy, with businesses’ being hit hard, many to the point of extinction, with the loss of countless numbers of jobs. The initial job subsidies won’t last forever. Monday’s decision re where to from here will be a difficult balancing act, and it’s very likely to have a large element of political content to try to appease us and/or to try to garner votes. Laurence
The cure is worse than the disease. Tony
this is what creates dictators Barry
uncertain Laurie
As a country, we have the chance to do what virtually no other country has the chance to do. Brian
No, No, No. Let’s have rid of her and the Labour party at the election. Carl
Jacinda wants to eliminate Covid in NZ so that she can be the first political leader to”beat” the virus. Imagine the international headlines that that would bring. A wrecked economy is easily sorted by increases taxes again and again, or leave it to National to sort out. Look out UN here she comes. Geoff.
It’s a stripping of civil liberties, treating citizens as if they were children rather than adults as if they can’t think for themselves. A Nanny State indeed. DJ
Our health system doesn’t have the capacity to let covid19 take its own course and why should our health professionals risk their lives to save those unprepared to avoid risk, plus there already seem to be 3 strains so herd immunity may not be possible. Ian
Welcome to your profoundly expensive 30 day trial of communism. Xi Poo Ping approves. Steve
it is impossible to eliminate without a vaccine. Viruses are part of our life. Governments job is to manage its own panic, follow its pandemic plan agreed on cross party consensus without instilling fear and destroying the economy. Encouraging the population to dob each other in is just nasty and scary. Sam
wont happen. Peter
the borders should have been closed much much sooner and effective quarantine for incoming passengers Julie
Slow to start but doing very well now. John
Totally over the top. Maybe just a test for the One World Order which the left would like. Graeme
Yes because NZ is unique in this Pandemic landscape. Hindsight will only reveal an over-reaction not a wrong one. David
The borders should have been closed at the outset. No testing and no isolation at that time is the cause of where we are today. All our infection came in through the wide open borders. Robyn
They have little understanding of the consequences of their actions. By trying to shield a few elderly people, they are putting the rest of the population at risk. This will persist until/if a vaccine is found. Whilst I’m grateful for the Gummints action ( I’m 77 years old) I don’t really want to live with these consequences!!!!! David
Scientific evidence is clear herd immunity is the goal and therefore the Govt. got the strategy wrong, that is what you would expect from a coalition of losers who are mathematically, scientifically financially and practicalwise illiterate. Kevin
would be first country to ever succeed for a short period as the rest of world would then reinfect us doug
It will be impossible to eliminate just like any other flu Evan
HUGE over=reaction Every year we lose 1000’s of the population to the seasonal ‘flu which is corona virus is. And I am an 80 y.o. John
YES but border controls should have been “harder and earlier” by about 2 weeks which would have meant that the impact health wise and economically would probably been less. More money and resources should have been spent on real quarantine measures in the early days of people returning from overseas instead of the huge amount spent on closing down almost all economic activity. Gary
This is no less a staged pre election campaign using a health situation and fear to control the public. We can see how easy it works. Barbara
Firearms, freedom of speech, identity politics and now this. It’s all part of her grand plan for her own vision for NZ’s future and her grandiosie pomposity toward achieving centre stage in the grossly socialistic UN. Pure politicking! The only upside – our biased media has dropped all reference to the end of the world via climate change. Brian
The CoL is taking full advantage of the “crisis” to further its socialist ideals. This government is responsible for the virus getting a foot hold in NZ in the first place by its woeful management of our borders. It then allowed the virus to spread to our most vulnerable citizens in rest homes. Worst of all the CoL has destroyed the economy by decree in a desperate attempt to cover their incompetence. Richard
No, not in light of the increasing science based evidence about what we should be doing. The government needs to change tact. Robert
Complete head-in-the-sand stupidity …. quarantine the most vulnerable, prepare all health facilities ready to deal with extreme cases … and let the rest of the country carry-on as normal. No point trying to create a parallel universe … just deal with reality and let the virus run it%u2019s course. Once we have herd immunity and a safe environment then let the quarantined rejoin society. It ain%u2019t rocket science ! Steve
The FLU has been with us for 2,000 years of recorded history and possibly as far back as the period of the Pharaohs. Some 5,000 years ago. FLU viruses are never eliminated, but beaten by human immunity. The strains are still around! For example, the COVID-19 disease is caused by the SARS Virus (SARS CoV-2) and no vaccine has been achieved for SARS since its arrival in 2002. It is one of seven SARS virus strains. This socialist government has destroyed the NZ economy on the basis of a life threatening, novel, new virus and it identifies the utter incapability of the bureaucracy to efficiently analyse a crisis. The incoming government must tackle bureaucracy and red tape. Particularly, in view of the critical need to rebuild a broken economy. Broken by the dysfunction of socialist policy. In terms of this threat, the government acted on the basis of its effect on the Public health sector rather than its effect on the Private Sector and the general population? The best description of the impact of COVID-19 is by a journalist for ‘The Australian’ newspaper and that is one word ‘UNREMARKABLE.’ In reality it is just another FLU strain with about the same impact on society. All it needed was for the government of the day to reinforce ‘normal’ winter community precautions for seasonal Influenza. Not the application of a POLICE STATE to eliminate a virus that cannot be eliminated and to shut-down a fickle economy. And then there is the other question of the removal of power from the people at the first opportunity and the future implications of this abuse of power? Frederick
The huge mistake was not quarantining returners to New Zealand. That would have stopped all the contaminators spreading the virus. Draconian, yes but we would have eliminated the virus quickly. Peter
Total state dictatorship. Ardern is showing her colours as a committed communist. What an opportunity to undermine our economy and democratic rights. She has introduced the perfect repetition of the 1930’s recession. N.Z. will be isolated with a racially run government. I don’t even understand half the news as I don’t and will not speak Maori. We are surely on the road to democratic ruin unless we can throw out this depressive and lying government. Denis
Early Border control, quarantine and testing and tracing would probably have worked better Alan
It was all done to protect the population and there were no Guidelines to work from so albeit very rigid I think it was done in good faith Laurel
No. Take Taiwan’s proven approach in future. Don
It’s becoming clear that this government may have acted in haste. They may have opted for another of these so called ‘models’ that in the light of time prove to be way out what actually is happening. Also our PM likes to see her name in the world media. Once again I think this government has made another stuff up. Time will tell, so watch out for the butt covering. Peter
Far too extreme and the extensive overstatements have done incalculable damage. Gina
Let’s try to salvage what what we can now. Catherine
there is no way any country can ever eliminate covid 19 as the common cold is still around as are other illness’s so just get a vaccine to make it a normal type of flu jab when required and not be like a bunch of headless chocks because a so called expert says thousands will die if we don’t shut the whole country down and to hell with the consequences. Richard
Inept Dictatorial and so much politicising Panic generated to ensure compliance. Disastrous for NZ economy. Judy
Because I don’t think it will succeed – it just buys time at huge cost. Mark
This is the forerunner of moving NZ to a socialist State with Jacinda as Dictator. We pray that God will overrule in the affairs of our country and put a stop to the pursuit of elimination of the virus. Ian
The quicker we get rid of it the better for people and the economy Herb
It will never be eliminated hopefully contained with a vaccine Karen
Way too cautious with step down to level 3, and so inconsistent. Nothing more than a power grab! Trev
God or whomever PLEASE help us! Carol
This Govt. has so far given us a clear demonstration of what they are: Incompetent dabblers with a useless virtue signalling show pony at the helm. Instead of reacting straight away and throwing say 200 million at a organized quarantine at the borders incl. letting nobody into the country, that useless bunch of losers is wrecking our countries economy . I wonder who will actually be capable enough to execute some form of damage control in difficult times to come. The aftermath of this idiotic panic driven mayhem will confront us with more collateral damage : unemployment, business closures and not to mention the psychological damage caused are but a few to mention here. If this Labour Party outfit is re elected at the end of this year then I ‘d say that as a country we obviously do not deserve any better and might as well call it collective masochism.. Michael
It concerned me from the very first mention. I recall musing to my work associate that they had not thought this through. Too many ‘Unknown Unknowns’. I do not close to live my life in fear, and no one (including the government) should revoke my basic rights because of their fear. Clearly, and in abundant evidence every time the Prime Minister uses the word economy, she lacks even a basic understanding of what constitutes an economy. You can detect from her current demeanour that she is thoroughly enjoying this seized power and opportunity to remind us that “she knows what’s best for us”. Gary
To really eliminate the disease is an impossible dream. Has anyone managed to eliminate common ‘flu? What our Beloved Leader is doing is totally destroying our economy. Rob
Probably an impossibility to eliminate it completely as with the winter influenza. We need the people able to get back to work in a safe environment. Gloria
But they started the restrictions far too late John
Clearly it is time to acknowledge fundamental human rights and make sure the democratic government of NZ is not undermined. At present it appears that beneath current strategies to control CoVid19 there is a multi layered agenda which is hell bent on taking from us fundamental human rights. Clyde
How can we remain isolated from the rest of the world for a year or more? Parick
If the Government had managed the border from Day 1 we would not have had a problem. The statement that “we went early and fast” is complete spin. Derek
Which should have the higher priority, business or human life? The lockdown is the right choice since the virus grows exponentially and we would have to have a lockdown at some stage with the later we leave it the tougher it would get. Don
We have lost many of our civil liberties. Some permanently as demonstrated by minister Genter wanting permanent social distance by widening footpaths. The term ‘the new normal’ can only mean one thing. Permanent loss of rights. Our bill of rights has been burned with the support of many of the public who are wound into a terrified frenzy by state media. All the while the ‘threat’ seems to have an R0 of between 2-3 and only seems to kill old and/or vulnerable. George
I thought our closing the borders reaction was too slow so the virus is now with us like it or not and has been bought in by who knows. I think everyone wanting to come into NZ even Kiwis should have been locked out as soon as we knew about the virus but now it is here I don’t believe we are strict enough to knock it our. Police are pathetic and under resourced so the virus is allowed to wander around all over NZ. Barbara Goldstone
The Government has managed to trash our economy and it is going to take a very long time too recover There will be many people hurting badly. Australia’s way through it seems much more sensible and their economy will be much more intact. Helen
Anyone with half a brain knows it is the right approach Kat
The cure is now apparent as worse than the Illness Michael
This is an unsustainable position and even with a vaccine not achievable for so many, reasons . Reasonable should be taken to control internally. Travel and board reopening should be undertaken once better testing and tracking can be undertaken pre and post arrival. I.e. medical certificate before leaving country of origin testing upon arrival and monitoring whilst in country. Medical status certificate issued upon departure. Monitoring locations and other health stat like Fitbit can do and reporting back to user and NZ medical should be mandatory and provide at cost to all visitors and returning NZ citizens. Upon enter you are tested and quarantine if there is any doubt then monitor daily for any symptom. Malcolm
The stress of being isolated with too much time to think of all the sad things that have happened in your life. It has become morally depressing, not good for an 88 yr old Diana
As Stephen Joyce said pie in the sky protect the vulnerable let others go about their business Bev
Mostly the correct approach, now they need to reduce level to L2, with tight provisos, bigger fines for transgressions & rigorously police transgressions like Australia does, but get the economy moving. Remember “Its the Economy stupid !” Don
The governments hysterical reaction is a disaster for the economy and will result in impoverishment of present and future generations. We will pay for their inability to act early and close our borders to infection. It was a time to be firm rather than nice. The Singaporean, Taiwanese and South Korean response has been effective without crashing their economies. Lee
Jacinda is doing what China and the UN want…NOT what her voters need. She MUST go !!!!! Rod
who voted MMP Brian
Too restrictive and a complete over reaction. The seasonal flu kills far more people each year. The fall out economically will be far greater than the virus and the deaths of a handful of people. Pamela
This has b3come a platform for thee govt to bring in socialist policies and make thee people “govt dependent” scares th hell out of me gail
I never believed that an influenza virus variant [known from early] could be eliminated. If causing great mortality, its host dies and spreading stops. When the disease it causes is very minimal in most, it becomes part of our environment which is a sea of viruses and bacteria and fungi inside and outside our bodies. For most of us our immune system deals with all these organisms as it has evolved to do. And what thinking person visiting a Dementia Care facility or knowing some-one with Alzheimer’s disease looks forward to that possibility for themselves with anything but dread. Rochelle
Yes. But only history will decide.If you “play” with fire you could get very badly burnt. (in more ways than one.) Bruce
The lock down was only partially implemented allowing 1000’s back to NZ with little or no follow up. A lvl 3 safe business operation would & still is a better option with strict control measures for the vulnerable. Terry
Not possible until a vaccine is available. Albyn
The lockdown is far too restrictive driving businesses out of business and sending the country into debt that will take a generation to pay off. Bob
Dumb idea! J J
If it was eliminated in NZ, then to maintain that status we would need to close borders – permanently. Use effective treatments and develop community immunity. Alan
We should have closed our borders at the very least a week before we did, put a lock-down on the elderly, & and those with chronic health problems and then provided official support for those elderly & with chronic health problems to deliver groceries etc. (if necessary by the military). These lock-down conditions on these vulnerable groups be kept on until the virus had worked though the rest of society. The vast majority of businesses could have continued. The closure of the borders (where the vast majority of cases emanated from) would have stopped the flow. Keith
But they did not impose border control soon enough. All returning travellers should have been supervised and tested. The Bluff wedding death and sickness would not have occurred if the Flight Attendant had have been tested. My main concern is for the tax paying business community who need to trade ‘now’ before we go any further. Gary
Safe practices in social and workplaces is what is needed, not shutting down the economy. Willy
It is impossible to keep NZ borders permanently closed. We can’t wait for a vaccine which is more than 12 months away and even then we would not know if everyone will take up vaccination. Therefore Covid 19 cannot be eliminated. Hildegard
It can’t be eliminated but it can be managed without destroying NZ’S economy and peoples livelihood. The lies they are telling to cover up their lack of preparedness are simply breathtaking a case of ‘too little, too late” but what can you expect from a bunch of Socialists fast nearing communism in their China loving and none of them have ever run a company let alone a country – how would they know how that works finically with no jobs for an extended period? Garry
It seems to be working. Clive
Sometimes I wonder if we should know the scientific qualifications of the principal commentators on this subject. Go back to school fast, please! Some of these expressions of rejection of the obvious need to isolate and eliminate are just so S A D. cf The Trumpeter!!!!!!!!!!!! Mabel
We need a vaccine and then “everyone”must be vaccinated, no exceptions. Peter
Shutting down the country has been partially successful and not the instant fix Arderns lot hoped for. As mention in Muriels article, a more sinister aspect is the precedent that has been set by the total lock down. Without realizing it, we have opened the way for future governments to use restrictions on citizens at any time it chooses and for any reason. Ray
they haven’t got it perfect but better than any alternative Margaret
Because it is an impossibility and always was, even the flu vaccine has not eliminated the flu and never will. John
It’s the economy stupid Ben
So far, yes. Hugh
By all means make sure to protect the vulnerable as much as possible. Get on with vaccine research. Don’t take the classic “emergency powers” moves to subdue the comments and actions that may be detrimental to state control. Tom
Jacinda has taken this opportunity to do whats she,s ALWAYS wanted-COMPLETE POWER OVER EVERY-ONE & GIVE OUR TAX MONEY TO IWI with her usual excuses.We are ALL supposed to in this lockdown TOGETHER but race based people are given SPECIAL TREATMENT WITH OUR TAX MONEY,hospitals,those who are now unemployed ETC are deserviving of our tax money NOT iwi.Look at countries who kept MOST of their country working,they,ll be more okay than NZ who will be in dept FOR YEARS thanks to jacinda/greens/maori ETC.IS there going to be an enquiry about her actions? she is like WHO totally out of her control & she needs to answer to EVERYONE. Most sheep support her but will their children & grandchildren support their mothers & grandparents after all they will be saddled with the dept jacinda,s govt. has handed down to them by being so short sighted & COMPLETELY OUT OF CONTROL. Cindy
It would seem impossible to eliminate COVID-19 until the whole world has been ‘cleaned.’ NZ has only had 9 deaths – with several of these already having serious lung problems. Hospitals are now virtually empty waiting for the pandemic to spread – at enormous managerial and financial distress. To ‘open up’ NZ, how will child care facilities and schools keep young children 2 metres apart? What happens on School buses? 2 metres apart? What a joke! Oh! and the bus driver was over 70 so all that experience is lost at a time when there is a dangerous shortage of bus and truck drivers! What a shambles ahead of us! And who led us into this pending fiscal and social disaster? Stuart
No, I don’t. As time has gone on I have had an increasing sense of foreboding. This has not decreased but rather has been exacerbated by the fact that we appear to have a parliamentary opposition that does not appear to understand the meaning of the word Opposition.  Jim
This government doesn’t learn – remember the mycoplasma bovis issue – “lets eliminate” by destroying millions of animals – hopeless failure. Attempting to eliminate covid19 will end in the same result, and likely destroy our economy in the process. Roy
We need sound leadership ,not a Drama Queen who is loving the limelight without the ability to reason on logic. John
Apart from the fact that it is the fastest and most assured path to economic destruction, it attempts the impossible; elimination of a super-contagious, mild pathogen. And where is the focus on creative solutions such as 222nm UV Sterilray technology for all public spaces, Hydroxychloroquine/ Azithromycin and Ivermectin disinfectants which kill the virus within 4-5 days and 1-2 days respectively. And 30g IVC/day for all hospitalized patients rather than 3 weeks on a respirator in ICU with a ~30% survival rate. Then we could get really novel and try Homeopathics for rapid herd immunity building. In the Spanish flu pandemic some UK hospitals were run on homeopathic principles. Their success rate for the flu was vastly better than “normal hospitals”. Homeopathicy is a Quantum science technology that has been falsely maligned by the ignorant and arrogant. Robert
It can’t be eliminated without permanently closing the borders. NZers travel to all parts of the world and people visit NZ from all parts of the world and tourism is a big part of economy. We CANNOT shut our borders forever. June
Jacindageddon !!. She went too late and too soft to eliminate her helpful and invisible enemy. Ron
Too difficult David
It is too idealistic and so is causing excessive damage to our economy. Small business, the back bone of our economy will be so damaged that recovery will only be long and low if at all for some. Peter
It’s unlikely there will be an effective vaccine within two years. We don’t even have a vaccine for common cold. More like 3-4 years. We cannot wait in isolation for that. We have to undertake a managed recovery on the basis of nationwide Antibody testing (Immunity) and allow self-acquired immunity to happen. Forget the current PCR Antigen testing. Focus on nationwide low cost Antibody testing,. It’s not perfect but it’s much better than losing our freedom, our minds, and our income. The current situation is intolerable for all and cannot continue. The vast majority will develop immunity. The only way forward is to develop herd immunity. We need to learn and develop ways to manage that with the lowest risk possible. Perfection is not attainable and the PM is wrong to force her idealist hope on us all. I am 75 with Heart disease and Diabetes. I am prepared to take my chances. Tony
We can not eliminate and trade. lachlan
The motive is complete control of the people by whoever controls the national and Labour Parties. Ardern is just a puppet. Who pulls the strings? Charlie
Just another flue and most have died from underlying causes..How many die each year from Heart attacks medical misadventure . prescription drugs. etc. State control. wake up n.z.People die every day and thats the only thing you can be certain of.. We are born to die. Dona
The Govt’s approach is upside down. As stated, the vulnerable in society should be isolated and the rest of the population and economy should be allowed to operate as normal. Makes logical sense. Robert
Too draconian and detrimental for our financial future Simonne
YES…as good as any other “crap’ attempts Worldwide….. The Human Race once again up against a rock and a hard place… ChrisH
Ardern has it all wrong. Break the lockdown. Isolate the elderly and those prone to respiratory illnesses until a vaccine is found. Get NZ working again before Labour stuffs the country. I take it we are borrowing billions from overseas to support the economy and yes it will take years to pay it back. Steve
They are using COVID 19 to advance their socialist (aka nouveau communist) agenda – PLUS promoting Commissar Ardern’s career prospects at the insidious UN. Ron
I believe more businesses should have been kept open. Cyril
My answer is tentative and depends on what the government does to re-start the economy after lockdown Terry
Yes & No, they could have enacted real quarantine immediately, not self-isolation and encouraged so many to Albeit most are doing the right action Kathryn
Control, save the economy and accept a few more frail deaths would have been MUCH wiser. And NO, that is not the benefit of hindsight – I said it from day one. Geoff
While we sit at home :to save lives”, the Australian economy carries on with only restrictions on large group gatherings. They will emerge from this pandemic with only the external losses to tourism etc. The level three strategy must be aimed at protecting the vulnerable ( mainly older folk) while allowing normal business to resume. I am 83 and quite happy to continue to stay in lockdown as long as it takes to reduce the risk to old folk Bryan
Your commentator is much more credible. A hoax for some not yet defined end. Keep up your great, balanced reporting.  Bill
Much like mycoplasma Bovis this government thinks it can be eliminated and like Mycoplasma Bovis they will fail at great cost to Kiwis and the economy David
far too extreme Gillian
Not a business brain in the lot. It is worse than crazy to have this harsh lockdown. I despair for the future Beverly
There are no perfect solutions, but “herd immunity” is a crock of a concept. perhaps the professor’s location in New York enabled the bad advice that facilitated the major spread of Covid-19 there. You use any controversial event as an opportunity to beat up politicians that conflict with your ideology. I will be unsubscribing to your messages, even though I have at times agreed with particular items from you. Hugh
How on earth did she truthfully believe that this virus would be eliminated completely with this approach? Some of the modelling has been outrageous yet our media are incapable, have an agenda or just too dumb to ask hard questions. Unfortunately the media, (notice how many TVNZ reporters are young females?) have fallen in love with her all over again. David
Over the years we as Kiwis have suffered constant flus and viruses because Politicians and their bureaucrats have failed to move immediately to stop any of these diseases from entering NZ. The Covid 19 was first reported outside China in Thailand mid January. THAT’S WHEN WE SHOULD HAVE CLOSED OUR BORDER! Government lack of taking action has lead to thousands of Kiwis dying generation after generation. Politicians think only to the next election restricting their view of previous epidemics. ALL THAT IS REQUIRED IS TO LOCK NZ DOWN AS SOON AS THE DISEASE LEAVES ITS HOST COUNTRY. There would be no 4 weeks isolation, no business going bust, no huge NZ debt increase, and no inflation because of the extra printing of money! We would continue to trade as normal. Kiwis and tourists can still come in with a 2-week forced isolation. Passenger liners would be used (Not hired) by the Government to isolate arrivals. (There are at least 22 liners parked up now.) Since 1889-90 all politicians should have been up to speed on how easily Pandemics can spread. But not a single Politician worldwide took any early action in the last 130 years! So therefore it is proposed to establish a petition for parliament to be submitted after the next election that: KEEP NZ SAFE PETITION 1. By election of the people at each general election a total independent body (Say 7) to: 2. To implement a total close down of NZ borders as soon as a medical threat leaves its host country. (In mid January Thailand was the 1st country to have the corona virus after China . That%u2019s when we should have shut the gate!) 3. To acquisition any government or private service and/or facilities. 4. To establish all rules and regulations to be implemented. (These should already be in place) 5. To be funded by with whatever financial resources are required. (Funds should be in place.) The rules and regulation are to be in place for immediate implementation. this would mean NZ would never have to go into lockdown at all! NZ would trade as per normal. We would live our lives as per normal! The Russian Flu of 1889: The Deadly Pandemic Few Americans Took Seriously https://www.history.com/news/spanish-flu-second-wave-resurgence Ian
cannot leave boarders open while locking us down. You cannot eliminate viruses. James
Far too draconian. Protecting the old and vulnerable while keeping the economy moving has to be the right answer. Bill
A contentious issue this is isn’t it. Just what would National do ? With a leader like Simon Bridges probably sweet stuff all He is as useless as a turd in a paddock. There are no guidelines here, so we just have to do what we can to help eliminate this Chinese initiated virus. Fuck the Chinese. Graham
I actually care about the health service and vulnerable members our country as well as the health service. It would be impossible to protect these people if the rest of the country is widespread because who looks after the vulnerable people? Non-vulnerable people who can spread the virus. It is also not absolute that only people with pre-exisiting conditions who can fall seriously ill or die. Sure you could take a very severe approach and say oh well let some people die, but people dying has a huge impact on families and friends and the economy. I think it is worth trying to eliminate the virus and find ways to control the spread. We are seeing better numbers and therefore maybe we do have a chance to do so. SK
NO! to have any hope of success, this approach will require total closure of our national borders … forever. Ardern – as well as seeking a Nobel Prize, or sainthood, or any other manifestation of fame and fortune that she can lay her hands on – is trying to tell us that we are the Lords of the Universe and can defeat any foe simply by following her instructions (despite their ambiguity). Viruses have been around a lot longer than we have, there are more of them and none of them have ever been defeated by us. We can accommodate them, and learn to live with them, but we, mere mammals, will not beat them TOBY
Its better than nothing Warren
Too severe. Scott Morrison seems to have it about right, and the ‘flu season will take out many more elderly this year as always . The word ‘economic’ doesn’t rate highly in govt releases. Dick
The destruction of our freedoms and economic cost of the present government policy is far too great compared with the very doubtful benefits. David
My biggest concern is allowing so many people to come into the country on a voluntary ‘self isolation’ scheme, thus allowing them to spread the disease further. Janet
The cure is worse than the disease! Brian
Models are created to persuade people. They are not prescriptions of what the future will bring. Models are not factual statements as evidenced by their inability to correctly predict innumerable past scenarios such as the exhaustion of global resources, world food shortages, and catastrophic climate change by the end of the twentieth century. When one reads that physicist Shaun Hendy, a global warming activist, advising the Government on modelling for the Covid-19 outbreak, one has to step back and ask, ‘What is the Government trying to persuade the people to do?’ One obvious answer is to scare the people unnecessarily so that all Democratic processes can be put on hold, the country put under dire economic and health restrictions, while a vainglorious attempt is made to eradicate the uneradicable. The Government should treat the outbreak as a communicable disease, with absolute border restrictions, social distancing, the banning of gatherings, the provision of adequate heath products, and massive testing, while letting the community continue with its economic and educational requirements. Ronnie
I am vulnerable. But perhaps that vulnerability will continue indefinitely. John
Isolating vulnerable people and allowing the rest of the economy to continue would be far less damaging to the economy and the population- even health wise. Leah
This is not 1918. An elimination strategy appears doable. There are technologies close to available [Apple and Google working together] to effectively and with privacy not compromised, advise people when the have been in proximity of someone who has subsequently developed the illness. Colin
It’s the correct response if you want to give the state more power and public less rights. Not to worry though, our socialist government wouldn’t do that would they? Cindy’s only “being kind” and besides she has a lovely little baby. Brent
I have real concerns for the taking away of civil liberties, the destruction of the economy and NZ’s way of life based on poor estimates Stewart
This virus will be here till there is a vaccine available. We will have to learn to live with it till then Ken
Typical Knee jerk reaction based on computer modelling which is notoriously wrong. Developing herd immunity was the way to go. And shutting the border much sooner. We let too many carriers into NZ after the WHO warning. Graeme
If this government is given the mandate that we eliminate this virus, it will equally have the “right” to eliminate all future viruses. All in the name of the common good of course. We will be under permanent house arrest! And, many livelihoods, particularly small business, will go down the tubes – something Jacinda does not seem overly concerned about. Oh, how monopoly loving big business tycoons would love that. Kris
Swedish deaths are now on the rise after their slack restrictions Howard
They wouldn’t have a clue Norm
The subjective method for diagnosing covid-19 & the unreliable PCR tests are creating the illusion of a pandemic because they are producing false positives. The PCR test can not isolate covid-19 and can not show if the ‘virus’ found was responsible for someone’s death. For the supporting evidence read the ‘CDC 2019-Novel Coronavirus Real-Time RT-PCR Diagnostic Panel’ document which mentions of the PCR test: Detection of viral RNA may not indicate the presence of infectious virus or that 2019-nCoV is the causative agent for clinical symptoms.[1] In regard to the method used to diagnose a death, it states on the CDC website: ‘In cases where a definite diagnosis of COVID-19 cannot be made, but it is suspected or likely (e.g., the circumstances are compelling within a reasonable degree of certainty), it is acceptable to report COVID-19 on a death certificate as ‘probable’ or ‘presumed.’ This is subjective and pneumonia puts a patient in the category of being a suspected covid-19 case…. There is more evidence to show that COVID-19 is a hoax, one which seems to be furthering UN Agenda 2030, which calls for collapsing economies. {Refer: Rosa Koire. UN Agenda 2030 exposed). [1] https://www.fda.gov/media/134922/download Clare
Like all leftist governments they will never let an opportunity past without making the most of it to further their ulterior aims of socialism for the good of all. The increase in benefits for those who will not be materially effected, the payments to the Maori Elite, the Genter widening of pathways all point to this Government extending its control. What needs to be done now is a significant opening of the economy alongside protection for those at risk ( the elderly etc) and keeping the borders closed . The real worry though is the sheeple being conned by this lot and them being re-elected in September. Robin
Until a vaccine is discovered we need to do everything possible to reduce risk Maurice
They have been too severe and the cost that has been estimated to the economy has been far too light. When we as a nation finally get back to normal the real cost and the extreme measures that have been put in place will be revealed . So you Kiwis are in for a real shock and then you will question this current Government as to why we had to pay such a price when the loss of life was so small. And the age of those who have died will come into question why such severe measures for the majority of New Zealanders. Ken
An ideological approach but as for so many socialist ideas far removed from reality. The price of this approach will cast a heavy pall over this country for many years Graeme
I believe the Govt and the Prime Minister have gone much too far. An approach which included early isolation of our borders against outside contamination coupled with total isolation of our most vulnerable group, the aged, and a balanced approach to controls on contact during commercial activity would be more appropriate. A similar approach is being applied in Sweden. The hardship arising from our current approach is likely to cost us dearly in the future. Peter
Definitely John
Typical Ardern government, don’t question the temperature of the water, just jump in! Rick
It appears to be a vehicle for a number of radical changes to our society. Most if not ALL of which are damaging, if not destructive of the Democratic Nation we live in. Lionel
I think in all cases of a contagious outbreak people who have it should self isolate. even for flu for too long we have soldiered on and so the outbreak is spread more widely endangering the more vulnerable in our society. Anthony
It is time we started to see through this political manipulation, and regained true democracy. Government by the people for the people. Also innocent until proved guilty. Note proved not hearsay. Judith
No they have NO idea what they are doing….. Carl
I agree with Dr Muriel Newman, the world is being destroyed by Government lockdown when clearly the elderly/vulnerable need to be isolated and herd immunity to be the way forward. Paula
WE should have had border closure and testing in at lest 2 weeks earlier also compulsory quarantine .I would have preferred a ore sensible focus on business Barry
Once again we have an OVER-REACTION to a Computer modelled completely false scenario. And we will all pay the price for this for decades. Geoff
I answered ‘No’ not because I felt it was a totally wrong approach but I believe it has not been handle well. If a lockdown was to be introduced, it should only be for a short period, No flights in or out of NZ during the period, and a definite end date regardless of success so there is certainty that economic activity can return. If that did not work, then herd immunity, would have to be the next step. The pain caused by the uncertainty of this lock down will be far worse than the virus itself. Fred
There are other countries that have kept the rate of infection down without sentencing the entire population to a complete lockdown and are likely suffer far less to their economies. Jacky
We need to eliminate this virus as quickly as we can, U S A delayed making decisions and have had 1000’s of deaths. We are very lucky in N,Z decisions were made so quickly. Jan
It is likely to ruin so many people’s business they have worked so hard to establish Bryan
The whole issue has been handled wrongly from the very beginning by a totally inept Government. If they had taken notice of what was going on overseas early in the piece they could have tightened border controls and prevented those with the infection entering the country. Instead they ignored the signs and then panicked. The resultant restrictions that were placed on the lives of New Zealanders and the destruction of the economy as a result were a total over reaction and the fault for the carnage that will follow can be laid squarely on Ardern and her Govt’s shoulders. The fact that they think that they can halt the virus is ludicrous, it can only be managed at best until a vaccination is found. Meantime herd immunity will occur. At present I believe that a large number of those who are dying are dying with the virus not because of it as other health issues are involved as well. As for the Stasi Police, I am so angry about their actions that I will not say exactly how and what I feel about them except the whole issue is an affront to the freedoms and values that we hold. Allan
I believe implicitly in the “herd immunity” approach. I was so encouraged in this view with the reading of this week’s newsletter. Thank you. At this stage, I also can’t shake a sense of forboding…….. Heather
No totally the wrong approach. I have taken the view right from the first news reports of this new virus, that it was media over dramatisation, which soon created panic among populations worldwide. And subsequent events have not changed my view. Ardern’s decision to go to level 4 has done immeasurable damage to New Zealand & the ramifications will become more & more apparent as time passes. My fear is we will become a third world socialist state unless we vote our current Government out later this year. Rex
Killing the country AND its democracy is NOT in my opinion a cure for anything. Do we do this every time there is a threat & who decides what a threat is. This is a very dangerous precedent. Tracy
Over the top and not realistic – they need to get contact tracing properly organised and testing done by region and much more. It took weeks to get the airport properly controlled! Mike
It will be impossible to eliminate it without having border restrictions that will cripple our tourism forever. Andrew
Yes it has been. to not isolate and distance ourselves would have been disastrous for the whole country / world. Colin
the country as a whole will not be able in the future be able to keep it out Brian
Probably an overreaction Gareth
I believe there is nothing worse than knowing that there is a virus about that has the ability to kill you and you cannot do anything to stop it. I, myself feel a lot safer with the current lockdown controls in place and are quite happy to have them remain until the virus is eliminated. Until such time that a vaccine is freely available we must accept some freedoms may be lost. Dennis
The point at which more lives will be lost for non virus reasons by continuing the lockdown was passed early in the lockdown. I am not convinced that the (9) deaths (9) were not with the virus rather than by the virus. Graham
not shore if it is right or not but feel we could do it differently Richard
Some aspects Yes, but mostly WOTT Graeme
A totally unrealistic knee jerk approach so typical of this government, the best approach is protection of the “vulnerable” (I am growing to hate that word.) just like, you know, a standard flu season, OK, there is no vaccine yet so a few additional precautions are required, people who are at risk should take some responsibility to keep themselves safe. John
I Believe those in rest homes should have been protected and quarantined and all those involved in medical institutions provided with a surplus of protective gear. Businesses should have continued as normal and possibly social distancing advised – a person with the virus in self isolation but no need to put hospitals in lockdown with all surgery cancelled and everyone in a PANIC mode. Sheryl
We need to build public immunity while maintaining economic & social activity Doug
But go to level 2 now as there is to much hurting re employment etc. gene
Basically David
Absolutely not! Ardern and her very motley crew will already have a lot to answer for without going to full elimination mode> Ron
I am not a Jacinda or Labour fan but I think she is doing OK. The worry is that a lot of it is political aiming at the next election. We are far too weak on those who flout the lockdown — in Russia you could get five years in the pen !!!! Alan
Too costly, and impossible to achieve Andi
I think Maori iwi are using this shut down rules for there own agenda Jimmy
Some ideas are ok but so many things are too extreme and the damage to our economy will be huge and probably beyond the imagination of most of us. Roger
Only herd immunity will work. Without herd immunity and in the absence of an effective vaccine any New Zealander who travels overseas is highly likely to be susceptible to infection. Peter
It certainly is. What you choose to ignore is that the death rate in NZ is a result of actions taken to limit the spread. It would be nice occasionally to have comment from the opposite side to the hysterical scenarios frequently being broadcast by this site. Keep up the good work on important issues, primarily the coastal claims. Phil
Hard & early ( enough ) is the only way, no matter the cost. Kevin
Over the top Bryan
Once again we see the “knee jerk reaction” of this government. Mistress Jacinda is now getting the high praise from “like” thinking media the world over for her actions, which time will tell has been the right approach. In the meantime, she and the only other minister to front, tell us ‘Now that you have washed your hand, sit on the mat and I will read you a story” Barry
We are sliding into a police state and no one seems to notice Jenny
The economy is seriously damaged and the long worked for livelihood of many people has been lost. By the very lockdown which is supposed to protect the vulnerable their safety is impaired by their inability to have simple repairs undertaken. Meanwhile our Prime Minister bubbles along as though speaking to very small children. Our fit “elderly” are more endangered by the lockdown and the resultant loss of their normal activities which have kept them fit. Paloma
Pipe dream. We will keep getting cases as they come in from overseas. Raphael
It is too one dimensional and the ones that need to be active have strangled us and our economy. there has to be urgent action taken to get NZ back to work. Morrin
The level should now be dropped to Level 3. Trish
the only thing that should have happened tighter border control John
They mistakenly went too far. Whether the PM was using the crisis politically is not beyond what other politicians have done before. Ray
It is based on false and scary premises and is an affront to our liberty and freedom. Ian
Absolutely not it’s extreme and tyrannous. Affecting our democratic rights and turning our country into a frightening place to be. No humanity. Quarantine for incoming travellers should have been implemented straight away and increased care of our elderly. Great dialogue about handwashing and personal hygiene. But not this extreme removal of our rights. Sharon
Who wants to emulate Italy, Spain, or New York? Not me! David
This is just a trial run at complete control by police state, look for a repeat performance!! Bud
It cannot be eliminated. As soon as NZ’s borders are reopened, whether now or in 2 years it will come into circulation because of exposure elsewhere in the world. Elimination is a futile pursuit. One would not pursue elimination of the various cold viruses at the sacrifice of everything else. It is ludicrous. Emma
so 9 deaths from convid19?,10000 police on empty roads where are they when 800 die from road kil every year after year and heaps more maimed for life.the whole episode is being run by the who, the same crowd as the climate change which is of course on the back burner, what is the next crisis?to try to dominate.what suckers we have become.revolt revolt James
No because of the high risk of possible infection from overseas as a lot of other countries have not tried to eliminate but more to control. Glenda
Their “response” has simply been a series of kneejerk reactions to the latest crisis rather than a plan. This all means it has all been too little and way too late. Mark
The govt saw the opportunity to apply socialist rule over our country as we see with WHO the whole thing has been bungled boarders should have been close a couple of months ago but no wait till a number could roam around our country spreading the virus Russell
they were at least 3 weeks late to control our borders as has been done in Taiwan for example. Will this Govt take the blame for the wrong course of action? John
Absolutely not. This is just her socialist control natural tendency coming to the fore again. She has doomed this country and hasn’t cured the virus, just terminally infected he economy. We will have at best 2000 out of 4.5m people with immunity after 7 weeks since our first case, then what??? Mike
Wake up SHEEPLE how long are you going to sit on your hands & think this socialist govt is doing a great job. For Pete’s sake do some research & you will see what’s happening out there, our economy is being destroyed, your rights are being taken away, stop listening to the main stream govt controlled media crap. Socialist Cindy has one agenda only & that is to grease up & get brownie point from the corrupt U.N. You also need to check how the corrupt W.H.O has been in collusion with China in keeping life threatening info from the rest of the World.!!! Allen
They should have closed the borders earlier and not trusted people to “self-isolate”. The PM and her advisors have made arbitrary decisions on what types of businesses can remain open without parliamentary oversight. This shows that our democracy is under threat. Our economy has been destroyed and will take years to recover. A majority of the public have been carried away with Ardern’s oratory and it is a real worry that they will vote her in for a second term. Kerry
It’s kill the economy and force a great numbers of people to depend on state assistance to live. Terry
Should have closed the boarders immediately banned all cruise ships from entering only let nz passport holders and permanent residents in but isolate them for 14 days but let the country operate as normal and isolate the old and vulnerable there was no need to shut the country down the country will take many years to recover and the dept will be horrendous Peter
If this process destroys our freedom then we are doomed to servitude. Bruce
First steps to creating a subservient population. Social engineering on a grand scale Darryl
The only way to eliminate Covid 19 is by developing an immunity … either by immunisation or a ‘herd immunity’ … everyone getting Covid 19 and developing their own immunity. The former it seems may take a year or more to develop. The latter is tough on the elderly and health compromised but saves the economy of the country and the businesses of the majority. We should be introducing measures to protect the vulnerable while the rest of us go back to work, and put up with a week of flu. Robbie
Folly Kevin
The imposition of this closure will be reflected on the generations to come and on employment Jeff
Total dictatorship is what Ardern wanted and she has at least got it started. Time for a revolution to get rid of her and her accolytes. Murray
They gave the iwi lots of rights everyone else none They could have let shops do online shopping instead of people getting things from Oz Cherryl
Too late for any real control, and no control in certain areas (people coming in to NZ), until way too late. Graeme
We are also having the wool pulled each day on new cases – they always include ‘probables’ which have not tested positive and are included only due to association. Another fraud. Gerry
to me is is an prelude to a one world government, a test run to see how compliant the population is to having freedoms taken away Ron
Having No Business is showing how inept this government is Les
Lack of Balance between Health and Econ/social issues – More about election than the good of New Zealanders Fairfax
They should not listen to modellers but to real data. Hopefully the real data will be real. It seems so much of the Covid-19 death and disease rate data is indeed false around the world. Darag
Simple fact .We are lead by incompetent impracticable idealists rather than capable proven brains.The likes of Ardern and Goff holding the positions they have makes one shudder with despair Don
NZ government usurping democracy reducing freedoms of the people through exaggerated fear Mike
This is the PMs communists dream, brainwashed from an early age, educated at socialists camps our PM doesn’t have an original thought , has to refer back to the so called experts, who all harbour the same dream, to be the top dogs, served by the down trodden, made that way by their PMs own greed, the word ‘kind’ has lost it’s meaning. Merryl
It should have been herd distribution as will soon develop. We will not eliminate it as it is world wide. When will we open our borders to travel and let people in. Andrew
Socialists Greg
It’s over the top, Graeme
Isolate all arrivals from Day 1 No one goes home til proven Covid free. Thus not one case will spread Margaret
It is probably impossible and will lead to unnecessary restrictions Richard
Socialist doctrine being forced upon us Greg
I believe in the herd approach to flu management. Dave
The Singapore. Model should have been adopted. Nev
NZ will be another Cuba to eliminate the virus. We would have to close our borders in and out for years! Dorothy
yes but nothing to do with the labor govt ; just the well informed , intelligent scientists and virologists , also psychologists , who have given advise on how to handle the crisis and the people %u2026.. to the labor vote purchasers . Roy
Would much prefer to control the rate of transmission, but allow it to occur in order o achieve a level of herd immunity. Are we going to tank our economy every time a flu virus comes around? It has been like Labour voters utopia – everyone staying at home and getting paid, free money to everyone that puts their hand out – and a Chardonnay Socialist Leadership still trying to persuade us all that they know what they are doing. Arden is not a leader and never will be in the sense of actually having any real clue about anything herself. We really need to vote these clowns out this coming election cycle. She will be remembered as the most clueless PM we ever had. Luke
As with climate change, nature will always win out in the end. Man (we) is arrogant to believe otherwise. Alan
wrongdoer hospitals have only 14 patients with cover ,and we have cancelled all elective surgery for people urgently needing this ,,why???? acton
Unfortunately when we needed a PM to think with their head, she of course went for media opportunity to virtual signal how wonderful she was, rather than close our borders and quarantine those that were sick. So look forward to the tax hikes we are going to now have to suffer, in fact I expect Jacinda will now get Cullens Death tax through now on the excuse of COVID-19. John
Despite the retrospective rhetoric from bob Jones to the contrary. We have done the right thing for NEW ZEALAND Greg
More common sense was required, and much less authoritative blanket control Brooke
Based on information at hand at the time I think any government would have made a similar decision. Whether it was the right one we will no doubt find out in the fulness of time. For businesses to start falling over a week or two into the lockdown were possibly walking a fine line and going to fail anyway. This whole covid-19 thing may well produce better business management practices for the future. Chris
They had their chance when they could have stopped C-19 at the border but by NOT going had & fast, it got in and away. It’s too late to eliminate it now and the damage to the economy would be far too great. To have a first world health system, we need a first world economy! Fiona
It appears we could have been much more directional with our testing and also got in coming travellers into lockdown sooner Graeme
Covid will be with us forever just as I normal flu which I believe stemmed from the Spanish Flu. Chris
A massive costly socially and economically ill thought thought out overreaction .The proof is in the numbers Phil
Ardern & Co are destroying NZ. There is another Agenda that has nothing to do with any virus. Linda
We have turned into a police state, stuffed the economy and suicides, depression etc after this will be far worse than the virus itself Laurie
One can always be wise in hindsight and when this disease was introduced without any known cure, quick and positive decisions had to be made. life is more important and in time we can return to a more efficient country Tom
It is scare mongering Colin
It was far too heavy handed Liz
We have to get herd immunity and the country working again Merv
Herd immunity is not a one month process! More like 3-6 at shortest, also is being a hostage in a rest home fun mmm no it’s like lying there waiting for the nurse to bring you the virus from her children at home! Think of our elderly ! Also this is a one way street, always try once the elimination option is passed there’s no turning back, look at the ZuK they tried! Dan
I believe that our Government is doing a really good job and I am saddened by the criticism in this week’s article. Peter
The cost in economic and other mental terms are far too high. The only media getting a voice are the left media. The encouraging of dobbing in is shocking.  Darren
Classic failure to segment the problem – Stewart Island, Gt Barrier, High risk Rest Homes are different. Closing small butchers, bakers, fruit shops has forced people to congregate at supermarkets. Some good aspects eg borders, distancing – but one size dies not fit all for these complex issues. John
We are screwed now. Sheena
Shows up Ardern’s stupidity and incompetence at its worst Garry
Total rubbish this lockdown affects all to save a few in their last days of life John
Destroying our economy, our small businesses, our livelihoods, our health and above all our democracy for a cold virus? It’s crazy Barbara
Political strategies for re-election Prue
100% attention seeking by the PM Collin
Roll back this tyranny by understanding there is no such a thing as a virus – not in the sense of contagion. Anthony Willy will do well to complete his extensive knowledge borne of his legal background by reading available on line the 2008 book “Virus Mania” and the 2017 German Court decision pertaining to Stefan Lanka . This applies to all who support NZCPR. As I will describe in a few days on my website knowledgewagon.nz with a myriad of references this is the scam of all scams designed to achieve exactly what Anthony fears. All “virus” scares have been predicated on lies designed to lead us and the world to where we are now – totalitarianism looming on a world scale. Perusal of my website will confirm I was well on top of the AGW scam as well. John C
Comrades, follow me, Look up you tube, put in Jacinda name, it’s all there. Clint
If they had closed the border sooner and properly Level 4 would not have been necessary Roger
This approach required us to go early and go hard on border controls. We didn’t. Instead, we galloped to L4, boasted to be the world’s most masochistic regime. Barry
Free up the economy and protect the vulnerably John
the stats prove NZ has done the right thing. From 90 a day getting sick, to 9, in 3 weeks, is amazing, all because we locked down saved lives. Sweden hasn’t, their death toll is 10x higher than each 3 of it’s neighbouring countries. “Cant fix stupid”. George
Elimination is not sustainable long-term and is thus a waste of time, effort and the economy. Slowing its progress so that the hospitals can cope, whilst also building capacity in the health system, and allowing life to continue in a more normal way for most people is a better approach that won’t wreck the economy for years to come. Unfortunately this Govt lacks ability and is far too obsessed with socialist ideology, and this pandemic allows them to stamp their beliefs on this country for decades to come. Bad as they have been for the last couple of years I believe we have only seen the tip of their ideological iceberg. Gary
They should have isolated all people returning from overseas properly and let everyone else in NZ carry on their usual activities. Moyra
I said before the lockdown was even mentioned by the government that they would do this and that it was a not so veiled way of controlling the population. This government now has the citizens of this fright where they want Chris
How on earth can we expect it not to re infect as soon as the borders are opened again. We wont have an economy strong enough to fund any more efforts. Yim
Definitely not. I have been saying the same as you since this was put in place. Can we start a petition or something to oppose this draconian law? The virus will never go away, we have to live with it. David
Maybe New Zealanders will realise this time that Ardern is using us so she can claim to the world that she has gone harder than any other world leader in her attempt to defeat the virus. We will be left to suffer the consequences of her arrogance for decades to come.  Murray
No – this is not a time to experiment. The government should have stuck to the pandemic plan to the country would develop immunity. Under her ‘elimination’ plan, it’s state control all the way. Susan
This is such a mess. Labour are imbeciles. It’s such a shame the average Kiwi doesn’t realise what a disaster they are. Kevin
This virus will not be able to be eliminated. The government will control the economy and our lives for the foreseeable future.  Bernard
Ardern is responsible for stuffing up the economy. God help us if she gets re-elected,  Alf