Archives for April 2022 | Josie Pagani



We must learn from the MIQ mistakes

History will always approve of the tough decisions our Government took to keep us safe in the first year of the pandemic. It showed courage and clarity. But even in that first year there were decisions that were plainly wrong – not just in hindsight, but at the time: Why were supermarkets allowed to stay open, but butchers and greengrocers had to shut? A butcher with a one-in-one-out policy would have been a safer place to shop than the overcrowded supermarket meat section.

That was the first sign the Government had closed its doors to outside advice and was failing to see a difference between improving management of the pandemic or letting thousands die.

It was a short jump from there to cynical politics when unprecedented transparency was called for. It concluded throughout the crisis that public opinion would be less forgiving of going too soft than too hard.

The Government started to be guided by politics not science.

Josie calls for a covid Royal Commission.

France is the frontline between moderates and populists.

As The Economist observes: President Macron's problem is one that responsible politicians always face when running against populists. He offers policies boringly grounded in reality. Populists say whatever will stir up voters, whether or not it is true.

The French election matters.

Le Pen's weakness on Russia at this dangerous time, combined with the mayhem she would cause Europe, would give comfort and nuclear support to Putin.

Another defeat for toxic populism would set an example for the world.

Josie's column is here.

The case for military intervention in Ukraine

Josie's Stuff column calling for military support for Ukraine is here:

The unintended consequence of standing on the sidelines following Putin's threat to use nuclear weapons is that the world has become more dangerous, not less.

In a twist on the '’mutually assured destruction’' deterrent, Putin is showing that he can use the threat of nuclear weapons as an effective way of coercing his adversaries to do what he wants.

His tactic is dangerous and can't be allowed to stand. Let him do this, and we say Putin can commit war crimes, bomb maternity hospitals, execute civilians, and even destroy whole cities and the people in them. As long as he has a nuclear weapon, we won't enter the war.

Red light stays, prison numbers and more of us renting forever.

Josie joined Shane Te Pou and Tova O'Brien on Today FM's Pae Korero to discuss the government's decision not to change the covid-19 red light settings, the prison population and growing numbers of people who will never be able to afford their own home.

Listen or read here.

Stop telling the Pacific what to do

Why doesn't New Zealand double its aid to the Solomons to grow new businesses, and more jobs in legitimate industries?

Why not help the country negotiate better contracts with China that insist on local labour instead of shipping in Chinese workers?

Pacific leaders are challenging us to move on from the old welfare model of aid, and offer something the Chinese can't. Relationships.

Perhaps it's time to bring back the idea of a Pacific Union. The EU started with a common market agreement for coal and steel. The Pacific could start with a common fishing zone that would stretch across literally half of the world's largest, most abundant ocean. We could contribute our expertise from our own fisheries settlement and quota management.

Josie's Stuff column is here.

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