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.  Click here to subscribe to Bryce Edwards’ Political Roundup and New Zealand Politics Daily.

Today’s content

Alert level decision, expert advice
Anneka Smith (RNZ): Lockdown extension likely for entire country, experts say
Luke Malpass (Stuff): Why it’s very hard to see a way out of level 4 
Matthew Hooton (Herald): NZ health system can’t look past lockdown (paywalled)
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Alert level decision day for Delta outbreak, experts say extension likely
Mike Houlahan (ODT): Indications suggest lockdown to be extended
Keith Lynch (Stuff): How the South Island lockdown could be lifted earlier
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): Delta outbreak: Why we’re not out of the woods yet
Siouxsie Wiles & Toby Morris (Spinoff): The hunt for the missing link in NZ’s delta outbreak
Zane Small (Newshub): The considerations behind Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s COVID-19 alert level decision
Derek Cheng (Herald): Why an MIQ leak is cause for relief, and is level 3 in sight? (paywalled)
David Welch (The Conversation): Why rapid genome sequencing is key to finding out how long Delta has been in NZ, and how large this outbreak might be
RNZ: Covid-19 lockdown will ‘stop the virus in its tracks’, but case numbers could rise for another week – modeller
Jamie Morton (Herald): Outbreak may be ‘more contained’ than first feared
George Heagney (Stuff): Disease expert confident lockdown can limit Delta’s reach
Anneke Smith (RNZ): Covid-19 outbreak may be smaller than first expected after border link found
Geraden Cann (Stuff): Is it time to put Covid-19 tracer app scanning codes in homes?
Jo Moir (Newsroom): Hipkins: The cheerful face of a Covid nightmare
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Middle class Stuff journalists soften us up for Covid death & globalization
Moana Ellis (Local Democracy Reporting): Contagious variant will curb iwi response, says Māori Party co-leader
ODT Editorial: Compliance and Delta outbreaks
RNZ: Covid-19 lockdown day 2: What has happened
Michael Neilson (Herald): North Shore Hospital, Northcote College, Lynfield College caught in outbreak; Lockdown decision today – extension likely, say experts
1 News: Auckland NZ Post worker contracts Covid-19

Vaccine rollout
Joel Rindelaub (Spinoff): Five reasons vaccines remain a critical weapon against gatecrashing delta
Catherine Harris (Stuff): Industry leaders call for workplace vaccinations and jabs for younger essential workers 
Vita Molyneux (Newshub): Government fast-tracks COVID-19 vaccinations for front-facing essential workers
Ross Stitt (Herald): NZ can’t be held hostage by the vaccine-averse (paywalled)
Eric Crampton (Offsetting Behaviour): Vaccines for children
Rachel Thomas (Stuff): Reports of vaccine online booking confusion as people race to get jabs
Hannah Martin (Stuff): The case for vaccinating children and teenagers
Cherie Howie (Herald): Vaccination for children aged 12 to 15 available now – PM
Bridie Witton (Stuff): Children aged 12 to 15 now eligible for Pfizer vaccine
Robin Martin (RNZ): Misinformation, social media could play role in low Māori vaccination rate
Julia Gabel (Herald): Police Association angry officers weren’t higher priority for vaccinations
Maxine Jacobs (Stuff): First drive-thru vaccination clinic starts up in Feilding
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): Vaccine numbers don’t lie
Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): At least Delta is getting us jabbed
Marc Daalder (Newsroom): Charting New Zealand’s vaccine rollout

Lockdown breaches
Kirsty Johnston (Stuff): Some hospitality workers asked to work during lockdown in apparent breach of restrictions
Katy Jones (Stuff):Hospitality workers plagued by uncertainty about Covid-19 restrictions
(Stuff): Legal basis for lockdown now ‘spelt out in neon lights’ – academic
Anuja Nadkarni (Newsroom): Kmart staff asked to ‘keep it simple’ and work during lockdown
Catherine Harris (Stuff): Wine glasses, fake grass: Retail staff fear being put at risk for ‘non-essential’ work
RNZ: Employers directing staff to work on non-essential tasks – union
Matthew Scott (Newsroom): ‘Probably a crime against humanity’ – AUT law lecturer denounces lockdown
Sam Sherwood and Catrin Owen (Stuff): Police receive nearly 700 reports of lockdown breaches
Sapeer Mayron (Stuff): Two arrested as mask use becomes compulsory at supermarkets
Craig Kapitan (Herald): Lockdown protesters, non-mask wearers arrested
John Weekes (Herald): Billy TK banned from internet but gets bail
Catrin Owen (Stuff): Conspiracy theorist Billy Te Kahika denies police charges after anti-lockdown protest
Northern Advocate:Northland police turning back holidaymakers but no checkpoints — yet
Vera Alves (Herald): Locals worry as Aucklanders exploit ‘loopholes’ to flee to South Island
Susan Botting (Local Democracy Reporting): Whangārei mayor hits out at Aucklanders escaping to holiday homes ahead lockdown
Mark Quinlivan and Isabella Durant (Newshub): Auckland councillor Efeso Collins still receiving calls, texts claiming COVID-19 ‘a great big conspiracy’

Health system
Michael Morrah (Newshub): Specialists ‘gravely concerned’ over hospital capacity amid COVID-19 Delta outbreak
Richard Harman (Politik): Officials ruled out closing the border
Josie Adams (Spinoff): ‘Here we go again’: Auckland nurses on returning to high alert
Mina Kerr-Lazenby (Stuff): Positive case found in Auckland’s Waitākere Hospital
Northern Advocate: Northland hospital opens Rongoā Clinic as resurgence of traditional Māori healing grows
Brittany Keogh (Stuff): Lower Hutt families rally to save capital’s only primary birthing centre

Testing
Lana Andelane and Aziz Al-Sa’afin (Newshub): Avondale College student ‘turned back’ after three-hour wait to be tested, as Aucklanders brace for another long day of queues
Adam Pearse (Herald): Passion Bakery owner – a location of interest – turned away at Northcote after waiting all day for a test

Wage subsidy, business
Anuja Nadkarni (Newsroom): More scrutiny expected this wage subsidy rollout
Rahul Bhattarai (Herald): Retailers seek clarity on what constitutes an essential service
Liam Dann (Herald): NZ economy can survive lengthy lockdown (paywalled)
Bernard Orsman (Herald): Auckland economy losing $100m a day, says council chief economist (paywalled)
Zane Small (Newshub): Borrowing not on Grant Robertson’s agenda despite millions spent on non-COVID issues from coronavirus fund
Frances Chin (Stuff): Nelson hotels dealing with a ‘mammoth’ number of cancellations
Karen Coltman (Stuff): Butchers frustrated by forced closures, as doughnut deliveries continue
Hanna McCallum (Stuff): Dairy owners seeking more police support and vaccination priority
Rahul Bhattarai (Herald): Foodstuffs giving 10 per cent bonus to essential staff
Kirsty Wynn (Herald): Clearhead and The Mind Lab offer free mental health support for struggling small business owners
Melanie Carroll (Stuff): What employers and employees need to know in level 4 lockdown

Lockdown
Stuff Editorial: Compliance is better than complacency
Felix Desmarais (RNZ): Pumpkin tapestries, yoga and book lists: Politicians in lockdown
Liu Chen (RNZ): Auckland foodbank requests double after lockdown
Josephine Franks and Sapeer Mayron (Stuff): Food banks ‘overwhelmed’ as Covid-19 lockdown starts, expecting need to grow
Vicki Anderson (Stuff): Christchurch City Mission night shelters ‘near capacity’ as homeless housed for lockdown
Josephine Franks and Adam Jacobson (Stuff): Homeless young people more at risk during Covid-19 lockdown: ‘It’s heartbreaking’
Michael Fallow (Stuff): Lockdown – back into old habits, are we?
Hamish McNeilly (Stuff): Confusion at Otago University over remote learning in lockdown 
Chloe Blommerde (Stuff): Mental health at the forefront of schools’ response to lockdown 
Helen Nickisson (Stuff): Four-day school camp cut short after one as lockdown announced
Jonathan Guildford (Stuff): Mental health toll on Kiwis as NZ goes into second national lockdown
Tim Brown (RNZ): Grocery shortages reported at Dunedin supermarkets on day two of alert level 4 lockdown
Riley Kennedy (ODT): Supply assured, hectic Foodstuffs says
James Nokise (Stuff):The dynamic duo are back, time to get the toilet paper
Andrew Marshall (ODT): Masks on as Southerners do what’s asked of them
Sarah Templeton (Newshub): Should we be wearing masks while exercising? Jacinda Ardern, Ashley Bloomfield respond to confusion
Siobhan Downes (Stuff): Government extends travel deadline for Queenstown, Cook Strait ferries until midnight Friday
RNZ: Travel deadline extended by 24hrs with hundreds still stranded in Queenstown
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Interislander puts on extra sailings to get people home for lockdown
Blair Jackson (Stuff): Trampers on Stewart Island unaware of nationwide lockdown
Chris Keall (Herald): NZ internet use hits new record – how close we are to the limit
Kim Knight (Herald): Lockdown 2.0 – three perspectives from small town New Zealand
David Fisher (Herald): The weekend Delta came to Coromandel
Brianna Mcilraith (Stuff): Taranaki leaders fear region ‘not ready’ for Delta outbreak

MIQ/Border
Alan Kenyon (1 News): Concerns over safety measures at Crowne Plaza
Christopher Reive (Herald): More calls for changes to MIQ system as top Kiwi athletes face ‘massive risk’
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Australia closes one-way travel bubble from New Zealand 
Melanie Earley (Stuff): Cook Islands extend travel bubble suspension as community cases rise in Auckland
Torika Tokalau (Stuff): More Pacific travel bubbles unlikely to open this year after Covid-19 outbreak
Torika Tokalau (Stuff): More Pacific travel bubbles unlikely to open this year after Covid-19 outbreak

Afghanistan
Alexander Gillespie (The Conversation): As the Taliban’s grip on Afghanistan tightens, New Zealand must commit to taking more refugees
Malcolm Evans (Daily Blog): A failure of Objectivity
Lucy Craymer (Stuff): New Zealand’s Afghanistan Legacy
Chris Trotter (Bowalley Road): The Men of the West’s Day Has Come – and Gone
Michelle Duff (Stuff): Afghan translator’s plea for his family: ‘Please help them get out’
Ripu Bhatia (Stuff): Green MP calls to expand evacuation efforts amid harrowing tales
Tess McClure (Guardian): ‘The Taliban are searching’: Afghan interpreter who worked with New Zealand pleads for help
Maxine Jacobs (Stuff): ‘Don’t forget about us’: A plea from Afghans as New Zealand is consumed by lockdown 
Matthew Tso (Stuff): Relieved but not out of the woods yet – Kiwi stuck in Kabul reacts to news of Defence Force mercy flight
Thomas Coughlan (Herald): UK will accept 20,000 additional Afghan refugees, after Five Eyes meeting
Thomas Manch and Geraden Cann (Stuff): Defence Force deploys as Kiwis and Afghan allies ‘struggle’ to reach Kabul airport
Newstalk ZB: Afghanistan, potential that people Defence Force rescues not eligible for NZ visas
RNZ: NZ military personnel leave for Afghanistan, 100 expected to be repatriated
Kurt Bayer (Herald): Afghanistan evacuation mission begins; New Zealand military plane heads to Kabul
Zane Small (Newshub): New Zealand Defence Force deployment en route to Middle East with twice the number of troops
Kurt Bayer (Herald): Afghanistan falls: Taliban in Bamiyan where NZDF served destroys statue of legendary leader

Housing
Glenn McConnell (Stuff): Inside the community of Auckland’s homeless young men
Bernard Hickey (The Kākā): Dawn Chorus: RBNZ warns of house price falls…eventually
Trish Oakley (ODT): Options for ‘Generation Rent’ seeking to build or buy home
1 News: House prices could drop as soon as 2022, Reserve Bank predicts
Anne Gibson (Herald): Reserve Bank expects house prices to decline
Thomas Coughlan (Herald): Housing is no longer a one-sided bet, says Adrian Orr
Jenny Ruth (BusinessDesk): Adrian Orr says house prices should be falling (paywalled)
Tom Pullar-Strecker (Stuff): Reserve Bank governor Adrian Orr says why he thinks house prices will fall 5%
Dan Satherley (Newshub): OCR pause won’t send house prices skyrocketing again – economist

Environment, climate change, conservation
Marty Sharpe (Stuff): Napier waterway has 53 times more zinc than one of the world’s most polluted
Brianne West (Stuff): Protecting 30 per cent of the oceans by 2030 – what can you do to help make it happen?
Marie Russell (Newsroom): How hunters are winning against climate action

Local government
Katarina Williams (Stuff): Major changes in way Porirua City councillors are elected set for consultation
RNZ: Invercargill Mayor Sir Tim Shadbolt ‘unnerved’ and waiting for apology over email leak
Logan Savory (Stuff): Sir Tim Shadbolt says latest report criticises him
Matthew Rosenberg (ODT): Sir Tim says still waiting for apology

Energy
Chris Hyde (Herald): Why all of NZ needs a Winter Energy Payment and fast (paywalled)
Gianina Schwanecke (Herald): Power bill fears during lockdown a concern, Flaxmere councillor says

Media
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): The Prime Minister loses most by not fronting
Patrick Crewdson (Stuff): The Backstory: Crisis conditions show the news media’s value

Transport
Georgina Campbell (Herald): Wellington’s $350 million plan for public transport, walking, cycling revealed
Joel MacManus (Stuff):Transmission Gully crew given essential worker permits to protect road during lockdown 
Janine Rankin (Stuff): Homes, wetlands and rural landscapes stand to be lost to rail yards

Sport and athlete welfare
Hamish Bidwell (RNZ): Podmore tragedy: Sporting bodies can’t drive change
RNZ: Cycling New Zealand under review – again
Adrian Seconi (ODT): Emotional pressure on athletes

Other
Peter Dunne (Newsroom): National stroking white identity anxieties
Dominic Godfery (RNZ): Inquiry into why Pasifika are paid 23 percent less than Pākehā
Eleisha Foon (RNZ): Report details steps to raise equity in tertiary study for Pasifika
RNZ: The Detail: Downplaying the arts at school
Bernard Hickey (Spinoff): We’re flying blind into our population future
Brian Fallow (Herald): Go easy on the bubble-bursting, Adrian (paywalled)
Michael Reddell (Croaking Cassandra): On the MPS
Jeremy Moses, Geoffrey Ford and Sian Troath (The Conversation): New Zealand could take a global lead in controlling the development of ‘killer robots’ — so why isn’t it?
RNZ: Auckland Airport reports $464m profit
Lawrence Gullery (Stuff): Kaivolution up for the challenge to rescue and redistribute food during alert level 4
RNZ: Chair of Ports of Auckland to step down
Greg Marcar (ODT): Better love overrides hateful accusations and judgement
Guardian: Former Great Grimsby Labour MP Austin Mitchell dies aged 86
Stephen Bates (Guardian): Austin Mitchell obituary

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