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The Pacific Island Forum sees Albo taken for a sucker while Jacinda doesn’t want to take geopolitical sides. Another covid wave is upon us with the return of various mandates being mulled. Australia and New Zealand’s skills shortages have no end in sight. Join Tim Wilms and Dieuwe de Boer on Trad Tasman Talk.

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There is again a push for more mask mandates with the Omicron BA4 and 5 waves underway. But NZ which never lifted its mask mandates in retail settings is, in fact, doing worse on all covid measures than Australia where all states and territories have minimal mask mandates. Anthony Albanese has called a snap national cabinet meeting as he is under pressure to restore covid isolation payments for casuals and free RATs for concession card holders.

Monkeypox has reached NZ with two cases who have returned from Europe where it is looking more likely it will become endemic there. There is an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Bali which if it arrived in Australia could devastate the $80 billion meat industry and force Australians to eat bugs.

The Pacific Islands Forum took place in Fiji where leaders declared a climate emergency. Anthony Albanese said he is ‘confident’ China won’t build a military base in the Solomon Islands after Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare signed a security pact with China. China appears to have blinked on its trade sanctions against Australia and will start buying its coal again to avoid more winter blackouts. Jacinda Ardern has been mocked for saying during her Australia visit that Pacific nations shouldn’t be forced to pick sides.

Co-leader of Te Pāti Māori Rawiri Waititi suggested he would put poisoned berries into the drink of ACT Leader David Seymour because Seymour opposes racially segregated democracy. Former Representative of the New Zealand Māori Council Matthew Tukaki has been found to have embellished his CV and has been forced to pay back $60,000 in expenses he overclaimed.

Dieuwe was again mentioned in the NZ media on its Q&A program for his tweet that Family First NZ can now focus on Christian nationalism now it has lost charitable status. Family First Director Bob McCoskrie rejected the philosophy of Christian nationalism stating his organisation aims to work with other faiths on issues important to them.

Jacinda Ardern has been criticized for saying that if foreign nurses don’t want to stay in NZ for two years maybe they don’t want to be nurses in NZ. Anthony Albanese has announced a jobs summit for September bringing together big business and big unions in a type of ‘economic forum’ to discuss ways Australia can ‘grow back stronger’. Treasurer Jim Chalmers has told businesses returning to mass migration to fix labour shortages isn’t a silver bullet.

Another deadly shooting has occurred in Auckland with two dead as gangland warfare continues to plague the city. In 2022 at least 43 people have died in suspicious or homicidal circumstances in NZ. New Police Minister Chris Hipkins has announced a new offence will be created of firing warning shots with a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment which will only lead to unintended consequences.

The NSW Government has saved $25 million by replacing the NSW flag on the Sydney Harbour Bridge to fly the Aboriginal flag permanently. This is the same flag substitution that occurred on Melbourne’s Westgate Bridge with the Victorian flag removed.

We finish the show by discussing the UK Conservative Leadership contest to replace Boris Johnson as Prime Minister. The five remaining candidates all have flaws that make it unlikely much will change in the UK under new leadership.

COVID-19: Epidemiologist Michael Baker calls for Government to ‘step in now’ as cases rise – Newshub
Watt rejects call to close Indonesian border over foot and mouth outbreak – SMH
Jacinda Ardern gets ‘lavish praise’ for speaking ‘nonsense’ – Sky News Australia
Albanese ‘confident’ China won’t build a base in Solomon Islands – AFR
Pacific leaders to declare ‘climate emergency’ in PIF statement – ABC News
Australian coal back in the Chinese market? – Spectator Australia
ACT Leader David Seymour slams Te Pāti Māori for ‘threatening violence’ in jokes about him – Newshub
NZ Māori Council further distances itself from Matthew Tukaki – 1News
PM Jacinda Ardern suggests migrant nurses put off by needing to stay in role for two years ‘perhaps don’t want to be a nurse in NZ’ – Newshub
Treasurer Jim Chalmers pours cold water on jobs quick fix – news.com.au
Two dead after shooting in West Auckland, man in custody – Stuff
Decolonisation: Aboriginal “flag” to replace state flags on Sydney Harbour Bridge and Westgate Bridge – XYZ

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Author Details
Tim Wilms is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of theunshackled.net, he is the Host of the WilmsFront live show, and co-host of The Brawler and the Brain and Trad Tasman Talk shows. He based in Melbourne, Australia where he also conducts field reports.
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Tim Wilms is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of theunshackled.net, he is the Host of the WilmsFront live show, and co-host of The Brawler and the Brain and Trad Tasman Talk shows. He based in Melbourne, Australia where he also conducts field reports.