New Zealand Parliament Buildings, Wellington, New Zealand.
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Today’s content

Parliamentary Grounds occupation and mandates: Analysis
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Why Parliament’s occupation doesn’t symbolise sudden division in NZ
Henry Cooke (Stuff): Convoy occupation: The problem isn’t the protesters. It’s their cars
The Free Speech Union (The Platform): Would the man in charge please stand up… and leave
Reporters Without Borders: Threats and violence against reporters from New Zealand’s “freedom convoy” protests
Morgan Godfery (Stuff): The follies of Camp Covid mask a serious challenge to the state
Daphna Whitmore (Redline): Denigrating protests is not new
Martyn Bradbury (Daily Blog): Wellington middle class woke gloriously cancel Mayor and Human Rights Commission
Steven Cowan: The people are revolting!
Gavin Evans (Stuff): Policing protest: You reap what you sow
Ian Hyslop (Newsroom): The wider freedoms beyond the protesters
Arena Williams; Stuart Smith (Stuff): Protestors wrote “hang them” across the pavers below my office
John MacDonald (Newstalk ZB): True leadership means tough decisions in difficult times
Chris Ford (RNZ): A disabled person’s view of the Wellington occupation
Pat O’Dea (Daily Blog): Solidarity forever

Parliamentary Grounds occupation: News reporting
Tom Hunt (Stuff): Protester claims police punched and eye-gouged him at Parliament occupation
Herald: Police move in again after barrier moved, occupiers warn of weekend resurgence
Sharon Brettkelly (RNZ): On the ground at the Parliament protest
Erin Gourley and Bridie Witton (Stuff): Parliament occupation leaders blame ‘plants’ for escalating violence
Herald: Human Rights Commission begins conciliatory process with protesters
Herald: De-escalation remains best way to end protest says Police Commissioner
Michael Neilson (Herald): Police trying to ‘break down our morale’, say protesters
RNZ: Police and Parliament protesters in late-night stand-off
George Block (Stuff): Two ‘high-risk’ sex offenders on extended monitoring have been among Wellington protesters
Nick Truebridge (RNZ): Businesses near Parliament increasingly frustrated at protest
Dylan Reeve (Spinoff): Wellington businesses are weighing up whether to act against the protest
Ireland Hendry-Tennent (Newshub): Anti-mandate protesters share photo of man wearing hearing aid as evidence of police infiltrators
Zane Small (Newshub): Anti-mandate protesters harass Jacinda Ardern, blast Michael Jackson’s ‘They Don’t Care About Us’ during West Coast visit
Chris Hyde (Stuff): A day in the life of Opshop frontman Jason Kerrison at the Parliament protest, as told to his fans
Thomas Coughlan (Herald): Christopher Luxon stands by protest speech, says he does not support occupation, won’t say if he has confidence in Andy Coster
Luke Malpass (Stuff): Christopher Luxon denies making political hay out of Parliament protest
Herald: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says police have her backing as protest gets ugly
RNZ: PM Jacinda Ardern on being verbally abused: ‘I choose not to focus on what is often a small handful of people’
Jake McKee (RNZ): Concern Parliament protest becoming ‘free-for-all’
Jane Nixon (1News): Police tell Wellington man they can’t help find stolen van
Sophie Trigger (Herald): Police, Maritime NZ fear private vessels crossing Cook Strait to join protest
Isaac Davison (Herald): Fact or fiction: Winston Peters says masks ‘worthless’ after going maskless at protest
Herald: Winston Peters on why he visited occupation
Hamish Cardwell (RNZ): Protest funder working for university forced to close campus
1News: ‘Increasingly volatile’ protest shuts Wellington Girls’ College

Covid
RNZ: Auckland epidemiologist Rod Jackson urges New Zealanders to take Omicron seriously
Amy Williams (RNZ): Government to announce next step in response
Mike Hosking (Herald): Where is our absent government when the going gets tough? (paywalled)
Nick Leggett (Herald): Government needs to let business manage Covid-19 testing (paywalled)
Kirsty Wynn (Herald): $12 rapid antigen test ‘last resort’ for schools spending $300 a day on relievers
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): Government accused of ‘misleading’ Kiwis over testing capacity as lab worker union says some tests won’t be processed
Cate Broughton (Stuff): Rapid antigen tests to be rolled out across the country by the end of the week
ODT: Editorial – Covid number crunching clarity needed
Mike Houlahan (ODT): ‘Very high’ Dunedin rate shocks
Hamish McNeilly (Stuff): Covid-19 cases rising rapidly in Dunedin as students return from across New Zealand
Hamish McNeilly (Stuff): Police stop ‘Covid-positive party’ as cases rise rapidly in Dunedi
Glenn McConnell (Stuff): Phase 3 of the Omicron response will arrive ‘shortly’, here is what that means
Herald: What phase 3 of response plan will look like
Zane Small (Newshub): More than 2600 stood down across Government’s COVID-19 vaccine-mandated sectors
Kate Hawkesby (Newstalk ZB): Covid case numbers higher than what’s reported
RNZ: National says NZers frustrated by lack of direction after worst of Omicron
Matthew Scott (Newsroom): U-turn on vaccine mandates for school sport
Tom Peters (World socialist website): Covid surge accelerates in New Zealand
Mike Hosking (Newstalk ZB): We must wake up to the problems with Fortress New Zealand

Reserve Bank OCR increase and monetary policy
Luke Malpass (Stuff): Reserve Bank’s interest rate ratchet will be new – and worrying – to a lot of voters
Hamish Rutherford (Herald): Reserve Bank may turn to double hikes as it warns inflation tipped to rise above 6% (paywalled)
Jenée Tibshraeny (Interest): Treasury will likely have to issue more debt to help the Reserve Bank unwind QE
Richard Harman: Who is to blame for the Reserve Bank having to raise interest rates? (paywalled)
Geraden Cann (Stuff): House prices ‘could fall 10 per cent’ as result of OCR forecast, economist says
Liam Dann (Herald): OCR: Reserve Bank raises rate by 25bp, flags more to come
Katie Todd (RNZ): OCR rise could sting first home buyers, struggling businesses – expert
Michael Reddell: The Monetary Policy Statement

Ukraine and foreign affairs
Geoffrey Miller (Democracy Project): New Zealand’s response to Russia – sanctions or diplomacy?
Audrey Young (Herald): Leaders making the most of the Russia-Ukraine crisis (paywalled)
RNZ: Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta calls in Russian Ambassador over Ukraine crisis
Thomas Manch (Stuff): NZ scolds Russian ambassador over Ukraine encroachment
Jacques Steenkamp (BusinessDesk): NZ toothless on Russia without sanctions law: Brownlee (paywalled)
Jamie Ensor (Newshub): New Zealand’s commitment to be ‘responsible actor’ in ‘contested’ space, ‘prevent conflicts’
RNZ: Ukrainians in NZ worried for friends, family back home
Hanna McCallum (Stuff): ‘It’s heartbreaking’: NZ’s Ukrainian community plan flashmob to show support and solidarity
Stuff: Editorial – Huge stakes for West as Putin lays down a challenge
Chris Trotter (Daily Blog): The West will ignore Putin’s weary anger at its peril

Parliament and Government
Thomas Coughlan (Herald): National attracting younger voters, will Luxon reap election reward? (paywalled)
David Farrar: Ipsos issues good news for National
Amelia Wade (Newshub): Newshub-Reid Research poll finds majority Kiwis back Government revisiting Capital Gains Tax
‘Heather du Plessis-Allan (Newstalk ZB): This is the problem with Māori co-governance
Aaron Martin (BusinessDesk): What is the govt’s secret agenda for immigration? (paywalled)
Sam Sachdeva (Interest): Oranga Tamariki changes ‘deliberately preempt’ Royal Commission
Michael Bassett: Centralising everything
Stuff: Fall leaves Waikato MP Tim van de Molen with a fractured spine, rib and two broken arms

The Political process
Nikitin Sallee (BusinessDesk): House of influence: the unwanted advice that would not go away
Holly Bennett (BusinessDesk): Political lobbying – which government relations representation is best?
Simon Jensen (Interest): Parliamentary democracy or benign dictatorship by officials?

Climate Change
Marc Daalder (Interest): Biofuel mandate runs up against ‘unintended consequences’
Craig Hickman (Stuff): Is farm-level payment scheme the solution for emissions pricing?
Eloise Gibson (Stuff): Emissions not changing, glaciers melting faster, says Stats NZ
Keith Woodford (Interest): The carbon forestry rules are going to change, with high likelihood of unintended consequences
John Berry (Stuff): Climate action has changed investing forever

Transport
Andrew Barnes (Herald): What the Govt should do with the billions being poured into light rail (paywalled)
Adam Jacobson (Stuff): Auckland Light Rail: Critics missing ‘key elements’ of project, transport planner says
Adam Jacobson (Stuff): Deaths on Auckland roads increase by 120% as Govt commits to zero fatalities by 2050
Oliver Lewis (BusinessDesk): Lack of urgency killed ‘peak time’ scenic rail services (paywalled)

Christchurch terror attacks coronial hearing
Niva Chittock (RNZ): Christchurch terror attacks: Last day of coronial scope hearing
Marine Lourens (Stuff): March 15 terrorist might have been stopped if online activities had been monitored, coroner hears
RNZ: Mosque terror attacks: Muslims still at risk of being targets for violence, coronial hearing told
Juliet Speedy (Newshub): Christchurch terror attack: Far-right online activity higher in New Zealand than many other countries – Islamic group

Media, social media, and information
Dita De Boni (NBR): Can’t buy me love (paywalled)
RNZ: RNZ, TVNZ merger decision made by Cabinet
Duncan Bridgeman (Herald): Strong NZME result and balance sheet leaves options for future investment – CEO says

Local government
Tina Law (Stuff): Christchurch deputy mayor makes shock decision to step away from public life
Nicholas Boyack (Stuff): Hutt Valley mayors both seeking re-election
Emily Ireland (Local Democracy Reporting): Masterton joins Three Waters opposition group
Glenn McLean (Stuff): New Plymouth council goes virtual after elected members protest in Wellington

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