Irony in move to Level One

There is irony in the move to Level 1 in the South at the same time as Level 2 will let the Aucklander’s loose into the South.  The threat of transmitting Covid-19 will actually increase for the South.  100,000 plane tickets sold in Auckland in two hours after removal of the the need to distance on planes, trains, and busses is a startling change in movement of people which means a big change in the chance of the virus being carried around.  Look at how the virus went global so widely and so fast:  plane travel.   So called criticisms of government ‘fear mongering’ are actually open attempts by those critics to display their ignorance of the virus.  By now it is clear that the worlds of the humans and the viruses are different.  The unknowns about the spread, deadliness, and the long term effects, as well as the unknowns about vaccines, are still too potentially devastating.  As time goes by virus experts in the health field are learning more and their advice is paramount.  Interesting that Dr Bloomfield and PM Ardern have for the first time expressed differences of opinion during this phase.

Virus ignorance has led to a major shakeup in NZ politics

The Editor,  The Sunday Star Times,  Auckland



There was a similarity between the demise of the Nats’ Hamish Walker and that of Labour’s David Clark.  In both cases, they have been downed by a serious flaw in the approach to the virus by their respective party leaderships. Read the rest of this entry »

“Military intelligence is an oxymoron”, especially in the virus world.

The Editor,  The Dominion Post,  Wellington


“Military intelligence” is an oxymoron.  Read the rest of this entry »

Government and NZ likely not prepared for Level 3

The government’s stretch of level 4 past the holiday weekend is a no-brainer.  Read the rest of this entry »

Mike Moore was a typical neo-liberal.

The Editor,  The Sunday Star Times,  Auckland

PM Ardern says Mike Moore ‘helped open up New Zealand to the world’. This is a simplistic and inaccurate description. Read the rest of this entry »

War as policy; war on the planet

The Editor,  The Sunday Star Times,  Auckland

Assassination of an official of a sovereign nation is clearly an act of war. But with the invasion of Iraq in 2003, on the pretence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction with no evidence of such, it became clear that war was being groomed as a normal course of relations between peoples. Read the rest of this entry »

PM needs to see GCSB is beholden to Five Eyes first

The Editor,  The Listener,  Auckland

16 March, 2019

Hello The Listener,

Independent security analyst Paul Buchanan of 36th Parallel Assessments suggests the NZ security agency GCSB has been concentrating primarily on Islamic Jihadists and more or less avoiding right wing white supremacists.  This is both provocative and rational.  The GCSB is and always has had first loyalty to the National Security Agency (NSA) in Washington, DC as part of the Five Eyes network of spy agencies.

Five Eyes will expect all of its branches to place their emphasis on those the NSA wants to focus on, which today in terms of threats of violence being Islamic Jihadists. The only way to avoid that will be to withdraw from Five Eyes.  The New Zealand government and public will need to examine more closely ‘who we are’ to establish priorities for our security agencies.  It is also an opportunity for the Prime Minister to develop a more nuanced understanding of ‘who we are’.


Richard Keller

published in 30 March issue

Denialism still at the forefront of climate thinking in NZ

The Editor,  The Dominion Post,  Wellington

21 March, 2019

Hello The Dom Post,

PM Ardern has said that climate change is NZ’s current equivalent ‘nuclear free’ issue and that future generations will judge today on that basis. Yet, as Mike Joy pointed out (20 March – lack of urgency) little is being done here in Aotearoa or around the western world. Read the rest of this entry »

Letter to PM Arden on the P-8A warplane

17 October, 2018

Jacinda Ardern,  Prime Minister

Parliament Buildings,  Wellington

Hello Ms Ardern:

Spending an extra $1B+ on a warplane (Boeing P-8A) while claiming there is not enough money for necessary pay increases for nurses and teachers, to name but two, is not a good look for a Labour government.  Read the rest of this entry »

Reminder that the Right in USA insists on unconditional support for Israel in order to be an ‘ally’.

The Editor,  The Dominion Post,  Wellington

3 June, 2018

Dear Editor:

Foreign Affairs has been quietly, but consistently reminded over the last decade that focusing on increasing trade with China and at the same time working closely with the US military in the Southwest Pacific, and especially with Five Eyes, which are more directly challenging China these days, was likely to create a few tight situations which they would have to try to maneuver through.

But was it expected that this latest criticism from the right wing Trump administration calling NZ the soft underbelly of Five Eyes and accusing NZ of having direct ties with ‘Communists” would reach the headlines?

What has brought this on, I expect, is not really a direct concern with the Chinese in NZ, but rather the recent UN votes where PM Ardern failed to unconditionally support Israel for mass killings of peaceful protesters in Gaza. There is nothing more fundamental to the US right’s ideology than total support for Israel and they will not accept anything else from anyone who wants to be an ‘ally’.

Richard Keller