With a straight down the middle approach, Heather du Plessis-Allan Drive on Newstalk ZB delivers the very latest news and views to New Zealanders as they wrap up their day.
This is as bad for Sam Uffindell and it is bad for National. Sam Uffindell has admitted today that he was a bully at school and this was not an isolated incident. It was the worst of its kind he says but there are others who might also reveal publicly that he assaulted them. Of course he shouldn't' be punished as a 38 year old for what he did as a 16 year old. 16 year olds make bad decisions. That's why they mostly don't' go through the adult court system. It's why we don't' let them vote. It's why we don't' let them buy alcohol. But Sam is being punished because of the party he belongs to. Which brings me to national. This is bad for national because for the second week in a row we're not talking about all of Labour's stuff ups which affect kiwis' lives. We are talking about National's stuff ups. And this is National Party's stuff up because they should not have selected Sam Uffindell at this point in time. They know they have a PR problem for recently selecting badly behaved young men: Andrew Falloon who sent a ‘sext' to a young woman, Jake Bezzant who allegedly impersonated his ex and sent explicit images of her to other men, Todd Barclay who was accused of recording the conversations of a staffer without her knowledge. Selecting these people consistently tells voters National doesn't think that behaviour is that bad; that National is a party of Tory toffs who have a ‘born to rule' mentality and think bullying more vulnerable people is ok. I'm not saying that is the attitude. I'm saying that's the impression some voters get. And National has just reinforced that by once again selection a young man who they knew had been a bully and deciding they could live with it. Now as I say I don't' think Sam should be punished for what he did in 5th form, but Sam isn't being punished for that. Sam is being punished for his party's selection history. And unless National wants future MPs to also go through this level of media scrutiny, they are going to have to raise the bar on what they tolerate in candidates' personal histories. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Questions are being raised around a spike in student drop out rates. Ministry of Education figures released to Stuff show one in three first-year polytech students quit last year. New national polytech agency, Te Pukenga, is under fire for a ballooning deficit and falling enrolments. But Tertiary Education Union President, Tina Smith, told Heather du Plessis-Allan students drop out for a range of reasons. She says it could be because of personal circumstances or because they've been approached by a business who wants to take them on. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
National MP Sam Uffindell was asked to leave King's College while he was a student after he was involved in a late-night violent beating of a younger boy, according to one report. Aged 16 as a Year 11 student at the Auckland boarding school, Uffindell and three others reportedly jumped on the boy and began beating him with what was believed to be unscrewed wooden bed legs, according to Stuff. It was reported the now MP for Tauranga apologised to his victim 22 years after the attack and nine months before he revealed his political aspirations. Sam Uffindell joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Yummy Fruit Company General Manager, Paul Paynter joined Heather du Plessis-Allan to discuss Nationals' new welfare and youth employment policy. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Newstalk ZB Sport News Director Matt Brown joined Heather du Plessis-Allan to wrap the day's sporting news, plus look ahead to the final day of action at the Commonwealth Games.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A Sydney High School has seen a 90 per cent drop in behavioural issues since banning mobile phones. Davidson High School made the change two months ago. Principal David Rule told Heather du-Plessis Allen the positive impact is clear. He says the kids are more engaged in the playground, sitting around talking to one another or playing games and it's become more relational. LISTEN ABOVE See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Bank of England announced its biggest interest rate increase in 27 years on Thursday as it forecast that the war in Ukraine would fuel further inflation and tip the U.K. economy into a prolonged recession. Soaring natural gas prices are likely to drive consumer price inflation to 13.3% in October, from 9.4% in June, the bank said. That will push Britain into recession later this year, with economic output declining each quarter from the fourth quarter of 2022 through the fourth quarter of 2023, bank forecasts show. Those pressures persuaded the bank's Monetary Policy Committee to boost its key interest rate by 0.5 percentage points, the biggest of six consecutive increases since December. The rate now stands at 1.75%, the highest since the depths of the global financial crisis in late 2008. Gov. Andrew Bailey defended the move, which will increase borrowing costs for consumers, saying the bank has a duty to control price increases that disproportionately affect the poorest in society. “I recognize the significant impact this will have and how difficult the cost of living challenge will continue to be for many people in the United Kingdom,'' Bailey said at a news conference. “Inflation hits the least well-off hardest. But if we don't act against inflation becoming persistent, the consequences later will be worse.” Central banks worldwide are struggling to balance efforts to control inflation while minimizing the fallout for economies that were just beginning to recover from the coronavirus pandemic. Higher interest rates increase borrowing costs for businesses and consumers, which tends to reduce spending and ease rising prices. But such moves also slow economic growth. The inflation picture has worsened in recent months as Russia cut natural gas shipments to Europe in retaliation for the west's support of Ukraine. That has triggered unprecedented increases in energy prices worldwide. The Bank of England estimates that gas and electricity bills will eat up an additional 3.5% of household incomes in the period from 2021-2023. That's five times more than the increase British households experienced during the energy crisis of the 1970s. Although it was the first major central bank to start raising rates in December, the Bank of England has faced criticism in recent months as its peers began to move more aggressively. The U.S. Federal Reserve increased its key rate by three-quarters of a point in each of the past two months to a range of 2.25% to 2.5%. The U.S. economy shrank for a second straight quarter in the April through June period, raising fears that the nation may be approaching a recession. The European Central Bank last month approved a larger-than-expected half-point increase as it targeted persistently high inflation. Recession is also a growing concern in Europe, where falling gas supplies may force factories to reduce operations this winter. Victoria Scholar, head of investment at interactive investor, said the Bank of England approved a big increase because it didn't want to fall behind the curve. The real risk is “stagflation,” a prolonged period of economic stagnation combined with rapidly rising prices that can be very difficult to get out of, she said. “It's very much doom and gloom from the Bank of England, and not least the fact that it's decided to carry out this almost double rate hike,” Scholar said. The central bank's actions have become an issue in the contest to replace Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who will step down next month. Supporters of Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, the leading candidate to succeed Johnson, said Thursday she would revisit the question of whether the bank should remain independent. The Bank of England has been independent of government control since 1997. The last time the U.K. increased interest rates by 0.5 percentage points was in December 1994, when rate decisions were still made by the government's treasury chief in consultation with the central bank governor. Bailey declined to respond to questions about the bank's independence, saying he hopes to work closely with whoever becomes prime minister. The current landscape is especially complicated for central bank policy makers because many of the factors driving inflation are determined by international events beyond their control. A first wave of inflation was triggered by international supply bottlenecks and increased demand for energy as the coronavirus pandemic began to ease last year. That was followed quickly by Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which triggered sharp increases in food and energy prices. Those pressures are expected to dissipate over time, and there are signs that prices for some goods are beginning to fall, the Bank of England said. But inflation is now becoming embedded in the U.K. economy, with business owners raising prices and workers demanding wage increases to protect their living standards. That is what the central bank is targeting with Thursday's rate increase. Inflation is expected to slow to 9.5% in the third quarter of 2023 and drop in line with the 2% target a year later, the central bank forecast. But Bailey said the uncertainty about these forecasts is “exceptionally large” because there is no way to predict what will happen with energy prices. “The committee will be particularly alert to any indications of more persistent inflationary pressures and will, if necessary, act forcefully in response.” - by Danica Kirka, APSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A big payday for tech entrepreneur Sir Peter Maire. His company Invenco, an EFTPOS systems company, has been sold to an overseas buyer for $127 million. It's also part-owned by interests associated with NBR Lister Greg Tomlinson. Business commentator Rod Oram joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has now left Taiwan after a controversial stop in Taipei which enraged China. China has now been firing missiles near Taiwan as a result of the trip in what's being called a "live fire training mission". Asia business correspondent Peter Lewis joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Brian Tamaki, as we know, is planning another protest tomorrow which starts in the Auckland Domain. Protests that start there generally have a tendency to spill over into Newmarket. This especially angers the local business association. Newmarket Business Association CEO Mark Knoff-Thomas joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Ian Foster could be out if the All Blacks lose both games in South Africa. An exclusive from the Herald found a meeting between Foster and Mark Robinson and Chris Lendrum, where Foster could go if they don't win one game. One of the changes he laid out in the meeting was axing John Plumtree and Brad Mooar, and bringing in Jason Ryan. Lewis Clareburt just gets better and better. Clareburt won his third medal of the Commonwealth Games with bronze in the 200m medley yesterday. And Eddie Osei-Nketia's coach is calling for a review into Athletics New Zealand selection criteria. It comes as the sprinter missed out on selection for Birmingham, where his coach also thinks he could've medalled. Lavina Good and Matt Brown joined Heather du Plessis-Allan to discuss the week's sports newsSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
It's pretty high stakes for Ian Foster for the All Blacks in South Africa. If Foster doesn't win at least one game, he's gone. But the question is whether the All Blacks have the capability to turn it around after the series loss to Ireland. Kiwi-born former Springbok Kevin Putt joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The growth of print books is matching the growth of e-books. The latest book industry report shows paperbacks still accounts for 90 percent of the market. Publishers Association of New Zealand president Graham Cosslett told Heather du Plessis-Allan the report covers bookshops and exports. There's also been a growth in Maori language books. “We've seen in the last year a 40 percent year on growth of total unit sales, and that's actually on the back of 24 percent growth the previous year.” LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Kiwi sprinter Eddie Osei-Nketia might've won a Commonwealth Games silver medal if he'd been allowed to go to the Games. This is according to his coach who says Athletics NZ qualification standards are too high. His coach Gary Henley-Smith joined Heather du-Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
All eyes will be on Chris Luxon going into his first National Party Conference as party leader. However, it hasn't been a good week for the National Party, with doubts from commentators on his leadership. And the Party President role is up for grabs, with Peter Goodfellow stepping down. It also wasn't a good week for James Shaw. Shaw was the only candidate named for their leadership contest, there are questions over whether he will get past the 75 percent threshold to retain his leadership. Rotorua locals are standing up to their council. More than 3600 submissions have been received on the issue of using motels for emergency housing. Newstalk ZB Political Editor Barry Soper joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The boss of Wellington Water accepts more money's needed to fix the city's pipes. It comes amid reports severe water restrictions could be in force this summer largely due to leaks. That may include total residential outdoor water bans. Colin Crampton told Heather Du Plessis-Allan they're fixing water leaks as quickly as they can - but the number is increasing. He says they need some big cash. “At the moment, our manual budget for operations is about $100 million a year, so it's going to be in the millions, isn't it?” LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A Texas jury has ordered conspiracy theorist Alex Jones to pay more than US$4 million ($6.35M) in compensatory damages to the parents of a 6-year-old boy who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. Today marks the first time the Infowars host has been held financially liable for repeatedly claiming the deadliest school shooting in US history was a hoax. The Austin jury must still decide how much the Infowars host must pay in punitive damages to Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, whose son Jesse Lewis was among the 20 children and six educators who were killed in the 2012 attack in Newtown, Connecticut. The parents had sought at least US$150 million in compensation for defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Jones' attorney asked the jury to limit damages to $8 — one dollar for each of the compensation charges they are considering — and Jones himself said any award over US$2 million "would sink us". It likely won't be the last judgment against Jones over his claims that the attack was staged in the interests of increasing gun controls. A Connecticut judge has ruled against him in a similar lawsuit brought by other victims' families and an FBI agent who worked on the case. The Texas award could set a marker for other cases against Jones and underlines the financial threat he's facing. It also raises new questions about the ability of Infowars — which has been banned from YouTube, Spotify and Twitter for hate speech — to continue operating, although the company's finances remain unclear. Jones conceded during the trial that the attack was real and that he was wrong to have lied about it. But Heslin and Lewis told jurors that an apology wouldn't suffice and called on them to make Jones pay for the years of suffering he has put them and other Sandy Hook families through. Jones' media company Free Speech Systems, which is Infowars' parent company, filed for bankruptcy during the two-week trial. - Jim Vertuno, APSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The All Blacks head into the first test against South Africa on the back of multiple changes to the team. Caleb Clarke is returning on the pitch, but off the pitch, Jason Ryan has come in to the team with John Plumtree and Brad Mooar out. And in the Commonwealth Games, Tom Walsh has said Jacko Gill may challenge him in the shotput. The Black Sticks Women are also taking on England in the hockey semifinal on the back of the White Ferns and Silver Ferns struggling against England. Sportstalk host D'Arcy Waldegrave joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
There will be some firefighters on deck to dampen flames when union members strike later this month. All members of the Professional Firefighters Union will walk off the job for an hour on August 19, and again the following week. They want improved working conditions, better maintenance of equipment and higher wages. Professional Firefighter Union's Wattie Watson told Heather du Plessis-Allan FENZ has contingency plans in place. “So there'll be very few of the career firefighters to be available. There will be commanders because they're not generally part of our agreement, and of course, there's volunteers.” LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
If you want to watch ratepayers completely ignore and defy their council, watch the water drama in Wellington unfold. Wellington - as you know - has major water issues. There are pipes busting in the centre of the city on a regular basis. On the street that I live, we have a regular leak. It plays out like this: The leak starts. We call the council. Nothing happens. Us neighbours talk to each and decide amongst ourselves to all call the council again. We do. The council sends some guys in high vis vests around, they tow some cars and take a look, they leave. The water still flows. It gets worse over the next few weeks (yes, weeks) until it's actually running so fast you could fill a bath in half an hour. We call the council again, properly angry this time. They come around and finally fix it. But by the time they fix it, we have lost so much of the city's water it's infuriating. That's happened about three times in the last four or five years. That's just one leak in one street. There have been more than one leak on that street and there are leaks in streets all over the place. So today, imagine my mirth to find out that Wellington Water is predicting such massive water shortages in the capital that they're probably going to completely ban outdoor water use on residential properties and potentially restrict indoor use. They're talking only allowing a 2 minute shower or one small bath a day. That's for this summer and summers for years to come. Why? Not because there's a drought, but because a million litres of water leaks out of broken pipes every single day. This could be fixed if the Wellington councils gave Wellington Water enough money to fix it but for years they've scrimped on maintaining the pipes. Because they've frittered money away on other things like nearly doubling Wellington City's cycleways budget against ratepayers' wishes. I reckon there will a huge number of wellington ratepayers who will simply ignore Wellington Water's requests to conserve water. Because why should they if Wellington Water won't do the same? Wellington Water has no moral authority. If they can't be bothered making an effort, why would ratepayers? That's my prediction for how this will play. Let's see what happens. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
What's going on with National's tax policy? Labour has been raising questions over whether National is going to stick to the policy of indexing the income tax threshold. National MP Chris Bishop joined Heather du Plessis-Allan to explain. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Just one Accredited Employer Work Visa has been processed in the month since the category opened. The National Party has got hold of a leaked Immigration New Zealand paper, and the Party's calling the log-jam disastrous. Applicants must submit a job-check to obtain the visa - showing the employer couldn't fill the role with a New Zealand worker. Since job-checks opened six weeks ago, three-thousand-321 have been submitted, but just 817 approved. Managing Director of Building Recruitment, Kevin Everett joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Government hopes the Commerce Commission drafts report on building supplies will be the first step towards greater competition. It's found it's too difficult for innovative products to enter the market and expand their share of it. Submissions from the public will be open until September, the final report will be delivered in December. Housing Minister Megan Woods says it's the beginning of a longer process. She says it would be inappropriate for the Government to make any changes without more information. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A counter-protest supporting democracy is planned to go head-to-head with a rally led by Brian Tamaki's Freedoms & Rights Coalition in Auckland this weekend. Counter protest organiser Mark Graham said it was a spur of the moment decision to show up and "save the nation's democracy". "The coalition and Brian Tamaki are not calling for freedom and rights, they want things to be done the way they want. That's just selfish. "He is throwing a tantrum because he is not getting what he wants. This is not democratic." Graham said their group was building in numbers since last night's decision to head to Auckland Domain on Saturday. "It is an important issue for us. We do not like what the coalition is doing, it is just not right. "We hope more people will show up to save our nation's democracy." Police have confirmed they are in talks with organisers of this weekend's anti-Government protest in and around Auckland Domain, which organisers threaten will be "impactive". A police spokesperson said they were discussing potential routes and plans with the group. "Police recognise the lawful right to protest. We also recognise the rights of the public to go about their lawful business. "We will monitor and respond to the situation accordingly to ensure public safety and to make sure any disruption to the public is kept to a minimum." A call has been made on social media for people who oppose the anti-government sentiments to gather as a counter-protest, with some saying they would block motorway entrances to prevent any attempt by demonstrators to disrupt traffic. The rights coalition stormed the Southern Motorway last month. The group, led by Destiny Church's Brian Tamaki, are calling Saturday morning's protest a "Kiwi Patriots Day and March". The group revealed it was also planning a major demonstration at Parliament grounds in a few weeks Details of this weekend's march route have not yet been shared with the public. It has said it would not be the same as the previous protest but would be "impactive". Newmarket Business Association chief executive Mark Knoff-Thomas said it hoped the protesters would respect the business owners' right to trade. "The last one caused major disruptions to our trade. We saw an immediate impact as Newmarket was cut off from the public so shoppers could not come in. "Saturday's our busiest day and in these times we need all the business we can get." Bishop Brian Tamaki led group plans to host a 'Kiwi Patriots Day and March' at Auckland Domain on Saturday morning. Photo / Brett Phibbs Auckland Council says it has concerns about potential health risks posed by the event and protestors desecrating consecrated ground around the area of the Cenotaph and Court of Honour. Director of customer and community services Dr Claudia Wyss said the proposed activity could result in "damage to the Domain, interruption of public enjoyment, prevent access to the Auckland Museum, and disrupt scheduled sporting activities". And given the high level of Covid-19 in the community, there were health risks. "It is important to note that the proposed activities require prior approval from the council, and that an application for the relevant event permit and other associated trading permits has not yet been received. "Events and activities held in a public place without prior approval can result in enforcement action." The council had written to the organisers making their position clear, Wyss said. "We are in touch with the police and will support them in any action they deem necessary on the day to prevent a breach of the law or damage to public property." The group claims the upcoming march will be an "opportunity to unite freedom fighters across the North Island and rally the public for the coming events ahead". A similar demonstration is also planned for Christchurch the following weekend. Police yesterday said they were still making inquiries about the last month's protest, and no charges had been laid. - Akula Sharma, NZ HeraldSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Department of Conservation has been forced to issue a warning to visitors to national parks after staff found Aucklanders carrying pet cats up Mt Taranaki in backpacks. The extraordinary alert was prompted by a bizarre feline incident but a spokesman said cats are not the only animals straying into some of our most pristine wilderness. DoC senior ranger Dave Rogers said staff saw the cats, who were rugged up against the cold in their own little jackets, being loaded into backpacks in a car park at Egmont National Park. "Cats and all other domestic animals are not allowed in the National Park as they pose a threat to endangered birds such as kiwi and whio, and other native species including geckos and insects," Rogers said. When approached, the owners, who were visiting from Auckland, said they weren't aware of the rules, which prohibit pets in the National Park. Photo / DOC "Bringing a pet into the park may seem a harmless thing to do," Rogers added, noting that dogs, rabbits and even a parrot have been brought into the park recently, "but it has potentially deadly consequences for our native wildlife, particularly should the pets run loose or escape from their owners' control." He said the animals could have a devastating effect on the native wildlife in the area. "Our conservation land is vitally important for the survival of endangered species. Many of our native birds are flightless and have few or no defences against predation. A dog can sniff out and kill a kiwi with ease. Uncontrolled dogs and cats can severely impact our native wildlife. "Even the most docile and well-controlled pet can instinctively kill." DoC advised that no pets are permitted in National Parks or dog prohibited areas unless express written approval is granted and those flouting the rules face an instant infringement fine of up to $800, with repeat offenders being liable for fines up to $100,000 or up to a year in prison. Anyone seeing a domestic animal in the park can contact their local DOC office or phone the DOC hotline on 0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468).See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Newstalk ZB Political Editor joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. On the agenda was the cost of living payment, today's unemployment figure and Nanaia Mahuta copping criticism over claims councils will continue to own infrastructure in the Three Waters reform. LISTEN ABOVE See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
We now have a got a long-term strategy on how New Zealand will deal with the impacts of climate change. It says climate resilience will be embedded in all government policies from now on. It talks about how entire towns and communities will likely need to abandoned due to climate change - and laws on how to guide that will need to be in place by the end of next year. Questions have been asked as to who will be fronting the bill for the new policy. Climate Change Minister James Shaw joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
New research has found that gambling is more common in New Zealand's most deprived communities. According to DOT Loves Data, the poorest ten percent of the country spend almost three times as much on gambling as the richest ten per cent. Pokie machines are also almost ten times as common in deprived areas, and the Problem Gambling Foundation says this causes a lot of harm. Peter Dengate-Thrush is the chairman of the Gaming Machine Association, he joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVE See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, meeting leaders in Taiwan despite warnings from China, said Wednesday that she and other members of Congress in a visiting delegation are showing they will not abandon their commitment to the self-governing island. "Today the world faces a choice between democracy and autocracy," she said in a short speech during a meeting with Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen. "America's determination to preserve democracy, here in Taiwan and around the world, remains ironclad." China, which claims Taiwan as its territory and opposes any engagement by Taiwanese officials with foreign governments, announced multiple military exercises around the island and issued a series of harsh statements after the delegation touched down in the Taiwanese capital, Taipei, on Tuesday night. Pelosi's trip has heightened U.S.-China tensions more than visits by other members of Congress because of her high-level position as leader of the House of Representatives. She is the first speaker of the house to come to Taiwan in 25 years, since Newt Gingrich in 1997. Tsai, thanking Pelosi for her decades of support for Taiwan, presented the speaker with a civilian honor, the Order of the Propitious Clouds. She was more pointed about Chinese threats in her remarks than Pelosi was. "Facing deliberately heightened military threats, Taiwan will not back down," Tsai said. "We will firmly uphold our nation's sovereignty and continue to hold the line of defense for democracy." Shortly after Pelosi landed, China announced live-fire drills that would start Tuesday night and a four-day exercise beginning Thursday in waters on all sides of the island. China's air force also flew a relatively large contingent of 21 war planes, including fighter jets, toward Taiwan. Pelosi noted that support for Taiwan is bipartisan in Congress and praised the island's democracy. Her focus has always been the same, she said, going back to her 1991 visit to Beijing's Tiananmen Square, when she and other lawmakers unfurled a small banner supporting democracy, two years after a bloody military crackdown on protesters at the square. That visit was also about human rights and what she called dangerous technology transfers to "rogue countries." Pelosi is visiting a human rights museum in Taipei later Wednesday before she departs for South Korea, the next stop on an Asia tour that also includes Singapore, Malaysia and Japan. Pelosi, who is leading the trip with five other members of Congress, met earlier Wednesday with representatives from Taiwan's legislature. "Madam Speaker's visit to Taiwan with the delegation, without fear, is the strongest defense of upholding human rights and consolidation of the values of democracy and freedom," Tsai Chi-chang, vice president of Taiwan's legislature, said in welcome. The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden has sought to tone down the volume on the visit, insisting there's no change in America's longstanding "one-China policy," which recognizes Beijing but allows informal relations and defense ties with Taipei. Pelosi said her delegation has "heft," including Gregory Meeks, chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Raja Krishnamoorthi from the House Intelligence Committee. She also mentioned Rep. Suzan DelBene, whom Pelosi said was instrumental in the passage of a $280 billion bill aimed at boosting American manufacturing and research in semi-conductor chips — an industry in which Taiwan dominates that is vital for modern electronics. Reps. Andy Kim and Mark Takano are also in the delegation. - HUIZHONG WU Associated PressSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Tiger Woods turned down an offer worth approximately US$700-$800 million to join the Saudi-backed LIV Golf series, according to the tour's CEO Greg Norman. During an interview on Fox News that aired on Monday, former world No. 1 Norman was asked by Tucker Carlson if it was true that Woods was offered $700-$800 million to join the LIV Golf series. "That number was out there before I became CEO," Norman replied. "So, that number's been out there, yes. Look, Tiger's a needle mover, right? "So, of course, you're going to look at the best of the best. They had originally approached Tiger before I became CEO, so, yes, that number is somewhere in that neighbourhood." Previously, Norman had told the Washington Post in June that Woods was offered huge money to participate but turned it down. Norman said the Woods proposal was "mind-blowingly enormous; we're talking about high nine digits." The controversial tour has attracted some big names from the golfing world to leave the established PGA Tour and the DP World Tour to participate for vast sums of money. Major winners Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka, Sergio Garcia, Louis Oosthuizen, Graeme McDowell, Charl Schwartzel and Martin Kaymer have all joined the breakaway venture, which has offered players huge money to join. The LIV Golf series is backed by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) -- a sovereign wealth fund chaired by Mohammed bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia -- and has pledged to award $250 million in total prize money. However, it has led to criticism from many players, including Rory McIlroy and Woods, that players have abandoned golf's traditional set up and accepted money from a country with a dismal human rights record. Before July's Open at St. Andrews, Scotland, Woods said he disagreed with the players who had left. "I think that what they've done is they've turned their back on what has allowed them to get to this position," the 15-time major winner said. "Some of these players may not ever get a chance to play in major championships. That is a possibility. We don't know that for sure yet. It's up to all the major championship bodies to make that determination. But that is a possibility, that some players will never, ever get a chance to play in a major championship, never get a chance to experience this right here, walk down the fairways at Augusta National. "But what these players are doing for guaranteed money, what is the incentive to practice? What is the incentive to go out there and earn it in the dirt? You're just getting paid a lot of money up front and playing a few events and playing 54 holes. They're playing blaring music and have all these atmospheres that are different." Woods added: "I just don't see how that move is positive in the long term for a lot of these players, especially if the LIV organization doesn't get world-ranking points and the major championships change their criteria for entering the events. "It would be sad to see some of these young kids never get a chance to experience it and experience what we've got a chance to experience and walk these hallowed grounds and play in these championships." Woods even went as far to criticize Norman himself for his role in the splinter tour. "Greg has done some things that I don't think is in the best interest of our game, and we're coming back to probably the most historic and traditional place in our sport." On Sunday, Henrik Stenson won the third event of LIV Golf's debut season at Bedminster, New Jersey. Nearly two weeks after he was stripped of his Ryder Cup captaincy for joining the series, the 46-year-old Swede shot 11-under par at the Trump National Golf Club Bedminster to win $4 million. He accepted the trophy alongside former US President Donald Trump, who was present throughout the three-day competition and who owns the course.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A top historian believes the Alexander Turnbull Library has another fake on its hands. Paul Moon has been researching British painter Augustus Eearle, who painted scenes of Māori life when visiting New Zealand in 1827. He thinks a painting held by the library called against truth is a forgery. Paul Moon joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Africa is planning to tell the world in three months that they want to start drilling for their vast reserves of oil and gas Never mind the climate, they need the resources. The Guardian is reporting that the leaders of African countries are planning to make the announcement at COP27, the global climate change meeting in November in Egypt. If they do this, it apparently makes it close to impossible for the world to keep temperature increases to below 1.5 degrees Celsius of pre-industrial levels. But the African leaders reputedly argue that they should be allowed to do what the rest of developed countries have done, and build their nations on the back of fossil fuels. They say if we care so much about the climate then we developed countries should go ahead and take the lead on sharp cuts to our emissions. This means China, India and Africa are potentially burning way, way more than little old New Zealand could ever reduce. So answer me this: do you really think we're doing the right thing spending so much money trying to reduce our piddly climate emissions? The ute tax you now have to pay, the climate tax in every litre of petrol, the climate rates Aucklanders will have to pay and the money taken from roads and put into cycleways. All of that is costing you so much money every week. Is it worth it? I don't think it is. I think we're fools thinking it'll make a difference. If you accept climate change is happening - and it clearly is - then the water's coming for you regardless of how much New Zealand tries to stop it. So surely, instead of spending all that money trying to reduce our emissions in the hope it stops the water, we should accept the water's coming and we should spend the money getting ready for the inevitable, don't you think? Because it's happening. New Zealand vs Africa. Who do you think has a greater impact? See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
More than 70 percent of diesel drivers buying up large amounts of discounted fuel are thought to be rorting the system. Purchasers were only meant to buy the number of units they'd typically use over a three-month period. But spot checks by Waka Kotahi on large purchases reveals 73 percent are likely to be excessive. Transporting NZ CEO, Nick Leggett joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
A full review will investigate an overnight rooftop protest by six teen inmates at Hawke's Bay Regional Prison. Two climbed down this morning, and the last four finally surrendered to corrections officers. The stand off apparently kicked off when the group weren't allowed in the sports area yesterday. There is damage - including broken windows. Corrections Chief Custodial Officer Neale Beales told Heather du Plessis-Allan the prison negotiation team talked the young men down without further intervention. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The dust has now settled on Andrew Little's healthcare workforce announcement. The industry have come out strongly, saying more financial support is needed to keep nurses and doctors here as well. None of the announced measures solve the problem of being able to earn significantly more in places like Australia. Jenny Carryer, executive director of the NZ College of Nurses joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Prince Charles is facing more questions over his charities after a newspaper reported that one of his funds accepted a £1 million ($1.96m) donation from relatives of Osama bin Laden. The Sunday Times reported that the Prince of Wales's Charitable Fund received the money in 2013 from Bakr bin Laden, patriarch of the large and wealthy Saudi family, and his brother Shafiq. Both are half-brothers of the former al-Qaida leader, who was killed by US special forces in Pakistan in 2011. The newspaper said advisers had urged the heir to the throne not to take the donation. Charles' Clarence House office disputed that but confirmed the donation had been made. It said the decision to accept the money was taken by the charity's trustees, not the prince, and "thorough due diligence was undertaken in accepting this donation." The fund's chairman, Ian Cheshire, also said the donation was agreed "wholly" by the five trustees at the time, and "any attempt to suggest otherwise is misleading and inaccurate". The Prince of Wales's Charitable Fund was founded in 1979 to "transform lives and build sustainable communities", and gives grants to a wide variety of projects in Britain and around the world. Charles, 73, has faced a series of claims about the operation of his charities. Last month the Sunday Times reported he had accepted bags of cash containing £2.5 million from Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, the former prime minister of Qatar. London police are currently investigating a separate allegation that people associated with another of the prince's charities, the Prince's Foundation, offered to help a Saudi billionaire secure honors and citizenship in return for donations. Clarence House has said Charles had no knowledge of any such offer. - APSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Michael Hill has become the first major retailer in Australasia to become an accredited seller of lab-grown diamonds. The jewellery chain has been selling synthetic diamonds since 2020. But now they can officially say they are carbon neutral and be accurately traced back to their source of manufacturing. First Retail Group managing director Chris Wilkinson joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Jacinda Ardern has spoken at the China Business Summit this morning. She said she is looking forward to the resumption of ministerial visits with China as Covid allows, and she hoped to lead a business delegation herself "to renew and refresh in-person connections”. She's also called for "diplomacy, de-escalation and dialogue”, which comes after Chinese threats to US Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan. NZME Business Commentator Fran O'Sullivan joined Heather du Plessis-Allan. LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Defence for the cost of living payment after some overseas residents and former migrants receive the first deposit. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says some living overseas will get the boost, but it's not worth trying to recover the payment. People can opt out, and Inland Revenue confirms nearly 1000 have so far. Acting Finance Minister David Parker told Heather du Plessis-Allan says there's no exact figure on how many people overseas will receive the payment, but it's a small percentage. “And we've known that from the start - our only alternative being an application-based process that would have required 2.1 million people to apply, which would've cost more than saved until they had the payment.” LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Around 2.1 million people will have received the first of the three cost of living payments today. However, some of the money has gone to overseas expats, some of which will have shocked some who have returned to their home countries. The owner of a Christchurch brewery is calling for prices to be removed from advertising. Three Boys Brewery's Ralph Bungard reckons that doing so will help curb our drinking problem. Electric Kiwi and Consumer NZ are having a war of words. It comes as the independent power company refused to pay commission fees to feature on Powerswitch, which saw the company removed from the website. Cas Carter and Nick Mills joined Heather du Plessis-Allan on The HuddleSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
New Zealand's offering to pay overseas nurses their course costs to lure them to the country. It's part of a tranche of measures to bolster our health workforce, including paying former nurses to sign back up. The Government will also cover international doctors' salaries during training - and double the nurse practitioners being trained. Health Minister Andrew Little told Heather du Plessis-Allan imported nurses can get up to $10,000 to help them get here. “The overseas nurses - they've got to do their competency assurance programme, and there's quite a variety of different fees that they have to pay, so we will pick up the cost.” LISTEN ABOVESee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.