News & Politics
New Zealand Listener

New Zealand Listener Issue 11 2020

New Zealand Listener is the country’s most respected general interest magazine, bringing you a wide variety of news, stories, columns, reviews, plus TV listings, every week.

New Zealand
Bauer Media Pty Ltd
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in this issue

3 min.
there is no ‘other’

As New Zealand commemorates the first anniversary of the Christchurch mosque massacre, we need to do more than passively reflect on how the tragedy cemented our resolve to remain an inclusive society. In the immediate aftermath of the mass killings, this country intuitively displayed an empathy the rest of the world found remarkable and rare. The spontaneous outpouring of support by so many New Zealanders, wherever they were and whoever they were, was an important illustration of who we collectively believe ourselves to be. But the actions of the alleged gunman also revealed some unpalatable truths about our connections to the vast global iceberg of racism and hatred enabled by sophisticated dark-web communications. Hard for the security services to track or dismantle, these networks insidiously encourage the views of otherwise isolated figures. Racism…

10 min.
diet to die for

As a professional chemist/molecular biologist, I find that I must comment on the latest “science-based” story on diet and health (“Diet busters”, March 7). Except for identical twins, no two people are the same. Each individual is the unique end-product of thousands of years of evolution. For example, consider the difference between an Inuit and an Aboriginal Australian. This means that we might not all react in the same way to some treatment or substance. Therefore any health study has to be made on a large number of individuals to obtain a meaningful conclusion. The population of Italy is about 68 million. Italians are known to consume large amounts of pasta, processed meats, cheese, red wine and coffee and flavour their food with herbs such as oregano. Their life expectancy is about 83…

1 min.
winning caption

Conal Atkins, Nelson FINALISTS Prince Charles: “It’s a wheelchair, not a throne. It’s still my turn next.” – Anna Gray, Auckland Charles: “It’s a nobility scooter.” – Dean Donoghue, Papamoa Beach Prince William: “We’re test-driving Phillip’s company car.” – Owen McMahon, Auckland Charles: “Not another heir-brained idea.” – Alan Belcher, Christchurch Charles: “Relax, son. One has a duty to rub shoulders at charity events.” – Kath Jones, Waikanae Caption: “Roll rehearsal for role reversal.” – Ian Bywater, Rangiora William: “I hope you’re a better driver than Grandad.” – Alan Wickens, Porirua Charles: “They call me the Prince of Wheels.” – Kath Jones…

1 min.

“He has one suit that he irons by running it over with his car.”– US comedian Seth Meyers on Bernie Sanders“Men build too many walls and not enough bridges.”– US attorney Joseph Fort Newton“Apologising doesn’t always mean that you’re wrong and the other person is right. It just means that you value your relationship more than your ego.”– Unknown“Coronavirus makes clear what has been true all along. Your health is as safe as that of the worst-insured, worst-cared-for person in your society. It will be decided by the height of the floor, not the ceiling.”– Anand Giridharadas in Time“His brain is like a radio playing at top volume but between stations.” – Stephen King on Donald Trump“I guess it makes sense he’s in charge of diseases now, because he always…

2 min.
10 quick questions

1. Which of these 80s films is not considered to be in the “buddy cop” genre? ❑ Lethal Weapon ❑ Sudden Impact ❑ 48 Hrs ❑ Beverly Hills Cop 2. Which band released a hit version of the song California Dreamin’ in 1965? ❑ The Monkees ❑ The Moody Blues ❑ Jefferson Airplane❑ The Mamas and the Papas 3. True or false? It’s possible for plant seeds to germinate inside the human body. ❑ True❑ False 4. True or false? The word “didgeridoo” is of Aboriginal Australian origin. ❑ True❑ False 5. Who was fond of eating a sandwich consisting of a jar of peanut butter, a jar of jam and a pound of bacon? ❑ Queen Victoria❑ Elvis Presley❑ Orson Welles❑ Charles Darwin 6. In which US national park would you find the El Capitan and Half Dome rock…

3 min.
biblical times

How can a city be isolated, other than by blockading all routes out of it – with what? Armed police? For many years, my wife and I have had a recurring difference of opinion about one of life’s eternal questions: where does it rain more, New Zealand or the UK? I’ve always maintained that the reputation the British Isles have for being a soggy outcrop hunched beneath mop-grey skies is unfair, at least when it comes to London. But during these past few months, my defence has been an increasingly difficult one to maintain. As Kiwi friends continue to send us photos of themselves basking in an apparently endless summer, the rain up here seems to have been falling ever since time began. As far back as November, I went to Yorkshire to…