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

Covid: Auckland community outbreak
Richard Harman: Ardern’s new tough talk
Claire Trevett (Herald): When will Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s patience with rule-breakers wear thin? (paywalled)
Thomas Manch (Stuff): Blame and fear for the team of five million, as PM pleads for compliance
Michael Baker (Herald): Why government is right to yo-yo between alert levels
Joel Maxwell and Thomas Manch (Stuff): A confident Government, a spreading virus, and Covid-19 tests outstanding: Here’s how Auckland reached lockdown, again
Jo Moir (Newsroom): As compliance wanes, Government hits more serious tone
RNZ: National wants Covid-19 rule-breakers to be punished ‘so others don’t do it as well’
Michael Plank, Shaun Hendy and Siouxsie Wiles (Stuff): Widespread testing in Auckland now key to ruling out possible undetected coronavirus outbreak
Toby Manhire (The Spinoff): When, and how, will we know if the level three lockdown will need to go longer than seven days?
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): Pay people to stay home
Jason Walls (Herald): Minister Willie Jackson under fire over attending Parker fight after Cabinet call
Justin Latif (The Spinoff): ‘Post-kindness’ rhetoric targeting South Auckland Covid cases will backfire, warns Efeso Collins
Danielle Clent (Stuff): Community says ‘let’s move on’ from pointing fingers at latest case
Sharnae Hope (Stuff): MP Rawiri Waititi tells thousands to self-isolate, against Ministry advice
Crystal Wu (Newshub): Dr Ashley Bloomfield tells Kiwis to refer to MoH website after Māori Party co-leader’s misleading Facebook post
Kate Green  (Stuff): Was it too soon to move? Perhaps, but hindsight is a wonderful thing
Crystal Wu (Newshub): David Seymour attacks ‘cult of Ashley Bloomfield’, Government’s ‘self-congratulating complacency’
Jason Walls (NZ Herald): Jacinda Ardern’s warning – more community cases ‘more than likely’
Kerre McIvor (Herald): Latest Covid 19 coronavirus outbreak reveals holes in Government’s strategy (paywalled)
Richard Prebble (Herald): Why was New Zealand’s latest Covid lockdown the only option? (paywalled)

Lynley Ward (Herald): Auckland councillor faces online abuse from conspiracy parishioners
Belinda Feek and Vaimoana Tapaleao (Herald): Almost 10 hours trying to get back into Auckland
John Weekes (Herald): Instinct for retribution must not take over, leaders say
1News: PM ‘frustrated’ recent Covid-19 cases broke isolation rules, but reluctant to threaten ‘repercussions’
Denise Piper (Stuff): Fleeing Aucklanders run risk of spreading virus through NZ, expert says
Belinda Feek (Herald): Hours of delays for motorists – confusion at Auckland borders
1News: Dr Siouxsie Wiles issues call for Aucklanders escaping city for baches to ‘bloody well take Level 3 with you’
1News: As Auckland scrambles back into lockdown, Michael Baker says there’s a ‘huge responsibility’ on people to look out for symptoms
Joel Maxwell (Stuff): Politicians call for a stronger approach to ensure people self-isolate
John Weekes (Herald): Anger at breach, fears about ‘conspiracy theories’ during lockdown
Patrick John O’Dea (The Daily Blog): Ardern Falters
Caitlin Ellis (Newshub): Judith Collins calls for tougher monitoring of self-isolating Covid-19 contacts
1News: Alert levels unlikely to lift early as UK Covid-19 variant may have ‘longer tail’ — Ardern
Mitch McCann (Newshub): Police to get involved against suspected isolation rulebreakers, offenders could be charged
Victoria Young (BusinessDesk): Ardern: Bosses should check if staff should be isolating (paywalled)
Vera Alves (Herald): ‘Take level 3 with you’ – warning to Aucklanders leaving city
Newstalk ZB: Experts react to Government’s decision to enter another snap lockdown
1News: South Auckland food bank expecting ‘hectic’ days ahead following lockdown announcement
Aimee Shaw (Herald): Return to level 3 will hit business hard
Jamie Gray (NZ Herald): Auckland economy braces for more pain from another lockdown
Herald: Grant Robertson confirms business support packages
1News: Judith Collins calls ‘yo-yo lockdown disappointing’
Tova O’Brien (Newshub): New Zealand’s yo-yoing between alert levels draws criticism from Opposition MPs
Catherine McGregor (Spinoff): Auckland back in lockdown: What we know so far
Hannah Martin (Stuff): Prime minister ‘frustrated’, pleads for Kiwis to ‘follow the rules’
Scott Palmer (Newshub): David Seymour says Government has ‘attitude problem’ after latest lockdown
Siobhan Downes (Stuff): What now for the Wiggles?
Rebecca Stevenson (Business Desk): Where and how to get lockdown support payments

Covid: General
Alan Bollard (Stuff): New Zealand has fared well in year one of Covid, but how can we take that next step towards normality?
Claire Trevett (Herald): Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s year of pandemic and hope for Alert Level Zero (paywalled)
Andrea Vance (Stuff): Immunity inequality means the Covid crisis won’t end for all of us
Simon Collins (Herald): Covid generation: Shaken and still feeling the hurt (paywalled)
Alison Mau (Stuff): Vaccinate south Auckland first – you just can’t argue with this truly good idea
Rowan Quinn (RNZ): GPs denied DHBs’ leftover vaccines – ‘It’s just soul destroying’
Elle Hunt (The Guardian): Words matter: how New Zealand’s clear messaging helped beat Covid
Alison Brook (Interest): Which countries will recover best from COVID-19?
Cate Broughton (Stuff): Covid-19: Controlling the vaccine campaign narrative – is the Government holding the reins too tight?
Bridie Witton (Stuff): Covid-19: Unaccompanied minors as young as 12 in MIQ cause ‘child protection concerns’ for nurses union
Bruce Cotterill (Herald): NZ must get ready for post-Covid world (paywalled)
Jack Tame (Newstalk ZB): One year on from Covid-19 arriving into New Zealand
Stuff: Jacinda Ardern’s positivity backed up with grit, experts say
Claire Trevett (Herald): PM Jacinda Ardern plans to get vaccinated before public
Cate Broughton (Stuff): PM’s decision not to jump Covid vaccination queue backed by experts and Judith Collins
Siouxsie Wiles (Stuff): Sorry, I don’t supply Covid testing services
Sharnae Hope  (Stuff): Health expert on Six60’s full house – ‘make tracing mandatory’

Housing
Bernard Hickey (Stuff): New Zealand’s economy is a housing market with bits tacked on
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Housing propels NZ’s wealth: Are you in the 1%?
1News: Government doesn’t want to push house prices down, fearing loss of votes – Bernard Hickey
Fran O’Sullivan (Herald): Up isn’t the only way for property prices (paywalled)
Hannah Kronast and Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Surging house prices propelling New Zealand to one of the world’s wealthiest populations
Susan Edmunds (Stuff): Here’s why I can’t get excited about 12 families getting homes
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): More politicking than policy
David Hanna (Stuff): The myth of the ethical property investor
Thomas Manch (Stuff): Public housing waitlist climbs again, to record 22,521 households
Geraden Cann (Stuff): Legally blind teen gets just one flat viewing in three years in tough housing market
1News: Finance Minister defends Labour’s efforts to tackle housing crisis in combative interview with John Campbell
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): Is Grant Robertson just out of ideas?
Joel Maxwell (Stuff): Finance Minister Grant Robertson says Government isn’t kicking housing problems to Reserve Bank
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Property investors making it ‘so much worse for others’ in ‘overheated’ housing market – Jacinda Ardern
1News: Auckland fourth least affordable city for housing among world cities – 2021 Demographia report
Ben Leahy (NZ Herald): OneRoof Property Report: Home loans deposits shoot up $41k in one year
Miriam Bell (Stuff): Is office conversion the answer to the housing shortage?
Crystal Wu (Newshub): Jacinda Ardern forced to ‘beg people’ to stop investing in houses an ‘admission of failure’ – ACT
Catherine Harris (Stuff): Super-charged house prices ‘can’t continue’: BNZ economist
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Expensive homes rising in value more quickly than affordable homes
No Right Turn: The central problem with housing policy
RNZ: Grant Robertson defends telling Reserve Bank to consider housing in its policy decisions
Victoria Young (BusinessDesk): Robertson on housing: ‘We have some tough decisions’ (paywalled)
Kelly Dennett (Stuff): Is pre-fab the future of housing?
Bernard Hickey: Diversionary direction
Zane Small (Newshub): Housing Minister Megan Woods on the ‘very simple’ reason the Government still sells off state homes
Catherine Masters (One Roof): How Queenstown dodged annihilation
Catherine Smith  (One Roof): NZ’s hottest suburbs: Where house prices have shot up more than 35%
One Roof: Revealed: Wellington first home buyers hardest hit by the boom
Dileepa Fonseka (Stuff): Opportunity beckons as rents soar everywhere, but plunge in Auckland’s CBD
Lucia Best (Stuff): The rental squeeze: Not all landlords are greedy – we have bills too
Jane Bowron  (Stuff): Welcome to the new Vulgarians
Ben Leahy (Herald): Family sell Papatoetoe house for $980,000, but cannot afford to buy new Auckland home
Jimmy Ellingham (Stuff): First-home buyers face the squeeze as investors swoop in Palmerston North

Louise Gould (Herald): More than $100k income, can’t buy a home: Hawke’s Bay house deposit requirements up $75k in five years (paywalled)
Rachel Thomas (Stuff): 2000 houses to be built next to protected wetland in Porirua

National
Luke Malpass (Stuff): Why Judith Collins could already be a lame duck leader — whether she knows it or not
Claire Trevett (Herald): What’s eating National MP Simon Bridges, and why is Judith Collins letting him get away with it? (paywalled)
Newstalk ZB: Judith Collins defends Shane Reti as other MPs snap up attention
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Simon Bridges defies Judith Collins’ order to stop criticising Police Commissioner because she’s not his wife
Joel Maxwell (Stuff): National’s Simon Bridges continues beating ‘wokester’ drum, denies desire for leadership

Parliament
Geoffrey Miller and Mark Blackham (RNZ): Career diversity among MPs could act as bulwark against populist revolt
Stuff: Chris Bishop asks for defamation claim document to check Trevor Mallard’s ‘veracity’
Stuff: Points of Order: Simon Bridges enjoys a week back in the spotlight
Phil Smith (RNZ): Baptism of fire for new master
Peter Wilson (RNZ): Week in Politics: Reserve Bank told to help with house prices

Local government
Logan Savory (Stuff): Invercargill City Council may revisit controversial new media protocols
Southland Times: Editorial – Now, perhaps, we’re getting somewhere
Stuff: Where Wellington councillors stand on the independent review
Gavin Ogden (Herald): Tauranga’s new boss, Anne Tolley suggests she’ll be back for a second go
Damian George (Stuff): Independent review into Wellington City Council to cost up to almost $75,000
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Wellington City Council review could cost ratepayers almost $75,000
RNZ: Wellington Council review could cost ratepayers $75k
Damian George (Stuff): Independent review into Wellington City Council to cost up to almost $75,000
Catherine Groenestein (Stuff): Māori Wards opposition petitions fail, even before law change made them worthless
Northern Advocate: Calls for Far North Council to revisit Māori seats decision
Grant Gillon (Herald): The Auckland Council isn’t broke but it sure looks broken (paywalled)
Gerry Eckhoff: Local Government Reform

Media
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): TVNZ doubles profit and repays $4.9m in wage subsidies
RNZ: TVNZ to pay back $5m in wage subsidies as profit doubles
David Court (Stuff): Why NZ should copy Australia’s crazy media law
David Cohen (BusinessDesk): Minister Kris Faafoi on likely RNZ-TVNZ merger: ‘Change needs to happen’ (paywalled)
Tamsyn Parker (Herald): TVNZ set to spend most on local content in a decade
1News: TVNZ reports interim profit of $33.9 million, OnDemand attracts record weekly audience
Colin Peacock (RNZ): It’s newsworthy, I swear
Hayden Donnell (RNZ): MediaWorks admits ‘organisational failure’ over racist radio broadcast
Karl du Fresne: The right to say what you (and others) think
Daniel Dunkley (Business Desk): Stuff boss calls for NZ social media news code (paywalled)
Malcolm Evans (The Daily Blog): Lords Of The Lies

Crime, policing and prisons
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Herald): An attack on the Police Commissioner is an attack on the PM (paywalled)
RNZ: Claims of police softness ‘completely wrong’, commissioner says
Aaron Hendry (Stuff): Poverty, desperation, social exclusion, this is the soil in which gangs grow
Tom O’Connor (Stuff): A proper way to ask important questions
Jimmy Ellingham (Stuff): Sweeping review of prison system called for after inmate’s death
Martyn Bradbury (Waatea News): Kelvin Davis has another terrible day at the office
Liz Gordon (Daily Blog): Get those prisons reformed!

Economy and work
Nita Blake-Persen (RNZ): Real estate agents under fire for not repaying wage subsidies
Matt McCarten (E-Tangata): Utu for workers
Toby Manhire (Spinoff): ‘Quite a 364 days’: Grant Robertson on Covid, a year on, and the crisis today – housing
Damien Grant (Stuff): Reserve Bank tasked with an impossible riddle
Brian Fallow (Herald): Unhappy returns set to remain for hard-hit savers (paywalled)
Liam Dann (Herald): What is the great reflation … and what will it do to investments? (paywalled)
Tim Hazledine (Herald): Why the transtasman income gap is larger than it appears (paywalled)
Matt Burrows (Newshub): PM Jacinda Ardern tells Immigration Minister to consider ‘anything more we can do’ to reunite critical migrant health workers with families
Dileepa Fonseka (Stuff): Infrastructure and housing could still be handbrakes in a post-Covid world

Health
Bridie Witton (Stuff): Nurses working for Māori providers paid a quarter less than DHB colleagues, says union
Ian Powell: Reforming the funding of district health boards
Kerre McIvor (Newstalk ZB): Why keeping our kid’s teeth healthy is so important
1News: Nearly half of NZ’s DHBs don’t have specialist diabetic care for young adults
RNZ: Private hospitals say study on cost to taxpayers is ‘misleading’

Inequality and poverty
Otago Daily Times: Editorial: Some progress on poverty
Crystal Wu (Newshub): Assistant Māori Children’s Commissioner says Government shouldn’t have to ‘wait for data’ to fix child poverty
Steven Cowan: The fat cats get fatter
Thomas Manch (Stuff): New Zealanders don’t want the most wealthy paying less tax than lowest earners, Green Party says

International relations
Rebecca Smith (Stuff): Covid has helped turn New Zealand into one of the world’s most trusted country brands
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): New Zealand fastest rising ‘soft power’ nation in new rankings as Hillary Clinton praises Jacinda Ardern
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): Chinese state media compares Xinjiang to New Zealand in article pushing back against Uighur human rights abuse
Dan Satherley (Newshub): What will happen to suspected Kiwi terrorist’s children? Expert outlines the potential solutions
Dan Satherley (Newshub): Jacinda Ardern says children of NZ-born suspected Islamic State terrorist better off in Turkey than Syria, but should go to Australia

Climate change
Philip Matthews (Stuff): National Portrait: Rod Carr, climate tsar
Bonnie Flaws (Stuff): Dairy business gets loan discount if hits environmental targetsRod Oram (Newsroom): NZ, this is your Volkswagen moment

Immigration
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): The cost of fewer migrants entering NZ will be massive
Jane Patterson (RNZ): Migration will not return to pre-Covid levels when NZ border reopens, Immigration Minister warns
RNZ: Lack of migrant workers a concern for aged care sector

Other
Brian Easton (Pundit): We must avoid treating Māori as living fossils
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Bill an important part of recompense, healing
Will Harvie (Stuff): Opiods: How NZ avoided the crisis engulfing North America

Monika Barton (Newshub): ‘To be a feminist, you have to fight’: Helen Clark to star in doco about gender equality called Revolt She Said
Karl du Fresne: The heroic journey of Ricardo Menendez-March

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