New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.
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Editor’s Note: Here below is a list of the main issues currently under discussion in New Zealand and links to media coverage.

Today’s content

Parliament, and end of year reviews
Bryce Edwards (Guardian): The secret of Jacinda Ardern’s success lies in her conservatism
Chris Trotter (Interest): Jacinda Ardern knows that it’s restoration people want – not revolution
Alexander Gillespie (The Conversation): New Zealand’s 2020 report card: doing well but could try harder
Martin Van Beynen (Stuff): A year of soul-searching and virtue signalling
Damien Grant (Stuff): Sir Roger Douglas’ great experiment is finally coming to an end
Steve Braunias (Herald): The secret diary of 2020 (paywalled)
Stuff: What we learned this year
Carmen Parahi (Stuff): 2020: The year we challenged systemic racism in Aotearoa and around the world
Gordon Campbell: On a few things about the year gone, and the year ahead
RNZ: David Seymour reflects on 2020, euthanasia and free speech
Craig McCulloch and Katie Scotcher (RNZ): 2020: An ‘unprecedented’ year in politics
Sasha Borissenko (Herald): Cultural appropriation and racial discrimination – it’s not okay (paywalled)
Steven Joyce (Herald): Covid, border controls and economic hangover. Buckle in for 2021 (paywalled)
Ziena Jalil (Stuff): A year to forget, but some good reminders too
Stuff: Good news in a bad year
Herald: Jacinda Ardern’s Christmas message to Kiwis: ‘Congratulations on getting through this year’

Housing
Sam Stubbs (Stuff): How to solve the housing crisis
Clint Smith (Guardian): Jacinda Ardern is at her best in a crisis. Now she must tackle housing affordability
Skara Bohny (Stuff): Property values could suffer from far-off inundation warnings, says advocate
Matthew Tso (Stuff): Capital’s median house price tipped to hit $1m by the year’s end
Lois Williams (Stuff): ‘Explosion’ of Airbnbs on West Coast coinciding with ‘serious housing crisis’
Anne Gibson (Herald): Leading questions: What Kiwi Property Group chief executive Clive Mackenzie expects of 2021 (paywalled)
Anan Zaki (RNZ): MSD denies emergency housing eviction due to policy change
Vicki Anderson (Stuff): Christchurch social housing tenant a ‘new man’ after getting new flat

Economy, inequality and work
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): NZ Covid-19 triumph turns tragedy after wealth grab, says equality commissioner
Steven Cowan: The Pandemic of poverty
ODT: Editorial – Repayment of subsidies welcomed
Aimee Shaw (Herald): MediaWorks repays some voluntary pay cuts, leaves TV staff in the lurch
RNZ: 13% rise in cost of public servants’ salaries
RNZ: Covid finances: solo parents, small business owners among hardest hit
RNZ: Brexit: NZ to negotiate free-trade agreements with UK and EU
Rob Mitchell (Stuff): Wellington’s ideas factory is the capital’s ‘best kept secret’

Covid, vaccine, and border
Branko Marcetic (Demcracy Project): The Tragedy of NZ family separations at the border
Jamie Morton (Herald): Big Read: The scientists who helped NZ crush Covid-19 (paywalled)
Fran O’Sullivan (Herald): Sorry for being the Christmas grinch but why are we so complacent about Covid? (paywalled)
Georgia Forrester (Stuff): Covid-19: Chris Hipkins slams Covid Tracer app use this summer as ‘woeful’
Amber Allott and Leighton Keith (Stuff): Covid-19 scanning: We observed, and the numbers aren’t good
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): ‘Here’s the marathon’: Siouxsie Wiles on Covid-19
Georgia Forrester (Stuff): Covid-19: Additional coronavirus tests for returnees from higher risk countries
Herald: Covid 19 coronavirus: Kiwis step closer to vaccine as freezers to store 1.5 million doses unloaded at Ports of Auckland
Chris Trotter: Christmas in the time of Covid
John Roughan (Herald): Did we overestimate the pandemic threat? (paywalled)
Tom Dillane (Herald): Covid 19 coronavirus: New Zealand scientists critical of anti-lockdown letter in top medical journal
Jamie Morton (Herald): What exactly united the ‘team of 5 million’ to quash Covid-19?
RNZ: Covid-19 at border: National calls on government to address concerns over new strain
Herald: Editorial: Covid-19 border rule changes show pandemic response must be flexible

Justice and policing
Kurt Bayer (Herald): Christchurch mosque shootings: Police launch AI unit to monitor Kiwis’ social media (paywalled)
RNZ: Body set up to look at miscarriages of justice flooded with applications
RNZ: Mental health issues a factor in almost 60,000 police calls, minister told
Jonathan Milne (Newsroom): ‘I do acknowledge the anguish and concern you must have felt’ – Justice Minister rejects mercy plea
Gil Elliott (Herald): Long way to go before victims gain rightful status, says Sophie Elliott’s father

Drug testing
Glenn McConnell (Stuff): Most summer festivals will not have pill testing, despite urgent law change
RNZ: Know Your Stuff issues warnings to partygoers over drugs
Mike Yardley (Stuff): Roll on rapid roadside drug-testing

Environment and conservation
Helen Livingstone (Guardian): New Zealand readers say ‘everything’ must be prioritised in battle against climate change
Logan Savory (Stuff): Southland ‘leads the way for New Zealand’ in carbon reduction plans
Eloise Gibson (Stuff): The climate isn’t saved, yet: Eloise Gibson on the biggest environmental stories of the year
Amber Allott (Stuff): Freshwater reforms and farmers: two sides of the same coin

Education
Katy Jones (Stuff): Schools should provide uniforms for free, former principal says
Herald/RNZ: Record enrolment for te reo Māori, foreign languages down
Renee Liang (Newsroom): The story of one remarkable individual standing up to power – and two men who must not be forgotten
John Gibb (ODT): Non-Maori speakers essential to survival of te reo

Other
Matt Nippert (Herald): Money and God: New Zealand’s richest religions revealed (paywalled)
Matt Nippert (Herald): Scrooge Harold Plumley leaves $122m fortune to Church (paywalled)
Tony Wall (Stuff): Oranga Tamariki is leaving kids in meth homes to be abused, says former social welfare boss Christine Rankin
RNZ: Youth offending drops, Oranga Tamariki says no room for complacency
Stuff: Multicultural New Zealand condemns hate speech in Queenstown and Invercargill
Bernard Orsman (Herald): City Rail Link: Auckland’s $4.4 billion underground railway being built to new Covid-19 playbook (paywalled)
Samantha Motion and Kiri Gillespie (Herald): Tauranga council: Govt papers reveal possible five-year intervention (paywalled)
Tom Hunt (Stuff): $8000 for Wellington City Council forum for 54 people
Matthew Tso (Stuff): Censorship in 2020: Tiger King, terrorism and the death of the video tape
Andre Chumko (Stuff): Bringing our archives to the people: Stephen Clarke on Archives New Zealand’s changing role
David Cohen (BusinessDesk): The NZ media that would not die (paywalled)
Justin Latif  (Spinoff): What I learned in my first six months at The Spinoff
Nicholas Jones (Herald): Doctor denied C section/caesarean at Auckland Hospital: ‘Why is the Ministry of Health controlling how we birth?’ (paywalled)
Louisa Steyl (Stuff): WellSouth appoints project manager to meet health targets
Jonny Edwards and Cate Broughton (Stuff): Rising number of New Zealanders considering a move to Christchurch

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