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How New Zealand essentially eliminated the coronavirus

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By NICK PERRY

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in August, Ardern found herself defending wildly exaggerated claims from President Donald Trump, who told crowds at rallies there was a massive resurgence and “It’s over for New Zealand. Everything’s gone.”

What a lowlife this man is/was. Disparaging the achievements of others, just to distract attention from his own catastrophic failures. And some lapped it up and still do. Please let it be that after January 20 Trump will play no more part in the affairs of the world.

Bouquets to Jacinda Ardern. Brickbats to Trump and those who support him.

Good on ya Kiwis.

14 ( +26 / -12 )

It's mainly because of the location. They're like Pluto.

Technically or Pandemically, few SouthEast Asian countries are doing better, Vietnam, Brunei?

-4 ( +15 / -19 )

A small car is easy to drive.

-5 ( +18 / -23 )

Well done! I am curious what the landing pad will be to reenter global trade and travel.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Jacinda Ardern deserves a lot of credit for this success. What really set it apart was the relief package for the lowest income earners to small businesses, leaving none behind so that there were not all these people desperate to break quarantine.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/17/new-zealand-launches-massive-spending-package-to-combat-covid-19

The NZ$12.1bn stimulus includes wage subsidies, bolstering the healthcare sector’s response to the virus, more money for low-income families and those on social welfare, and changes to business tax.

The differences between that and the American and Japanese responses is not hard to see.

6 ( +17 / -11 )

A small car is easy to drive.

any car is easy to drive when everybody agrees where they need to go, when you got back seat drivers telling the driver where to go but the driver thinks he knows best and gets lost anyways. thats when problems start. Now some countries have got lost bogged and sinking down fast

17 ( +23 / -6 )

It's mainly because of the location. They're like Pluto.

Both New Zealand and Japan is a island with tightly controlled borders. Once the virus eliminated, it doesn't matter how many people are inside, or its location, so keeping it out is not a significantly harder task.

5 ( +16 / -11 )

It’s up to leadership, she showed leadership, lost wages, government will pay, and the government will take a pay cut to show they understand what’s happening. What other country can/does have a government that actively puts the people first. I will wait for rebuttal..

10 ( +17 / -7 )

Suga could learn a few things with Jacinda about leadership and how to look over his people.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

She was bold enough to do what Boris could've done but didn't do. Close the borders early to arrivals and not let Kiwis go galivanting off on overseas breaks as soon as the 1st lockdown was lifted. It could've cost her her position but she had the conviction to sell it to the nation and see it through. Good on her.

13 ( +18 / -5 )

Japan's previous Abe government and present Suga government had no even willing to learn from success of New Zealand. 

Covid-19 pandemic raises big questions the value of economic power countries where could not prioritize health and safe of people to defend economy or relation with economic group.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Oh for a competent leader in Japan.

9 ( +14 / -5 )

New Zealand did a good job, no question...

BUT...

4.8 Millions population compare to Japan 125.0 Millions, compare to United States 328.0 Millions (if this number is correct) is a big difference and makes things much easier.

If a manager at work has to handle 10 workers or 1000 workers is a complete different situation.

-4 ( +17 / -21 )

Not to underscore her achievement but I think it was easier for NZ not only because of size and location, but because they don't have state governments. Australia had a harder time but basically achieved the same result in the end using a very similar approach, so I'm not sure size was such a factor. Leadership, approach and public support were more important. I agree with her that the public health system, which is normally busy anyway, would have really struggled to cope in NZ. Interestingly, it was Ardern's awareness of that fact, and actually listening to scientific and medical advice that set NZ apart from US. Catastrophic for America to have someone like Trump in charge. The US response should have been so much better and I'm sure Trump knows that. That's what riled him. Ultimately, I think Covid cost Trump his job while Adern kept hers. Trump can eat his words.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

As some other posters have pointed out, it is far easier to eliminate the virus in a country of 4.5 or 5 million. It is easier to enforce lockdowns, it is easier to do contact tracing and it is easier to track or prosecute those who refuse to follow rules.

-7 ( +12 / -19 )

They eliminated it because their leader is the greatest person that ever walked, closet followed by the whole of Australia yawn

-14 ( +7 / -21 )

Ridiculous article.  Rona will never be eliminated and as soon as restrictions on travel etc relax cases will flare up again.

Plus little mention of economic impact, beyond the house price thing.

As for vaccine certification, how is that going to work? 

And all for a disease that still has a pretty specific impact group and an otherwise pretty low mortality rate....

-11 ( +9 / -20 )

They eliminated it because their leader is the greatest person that ever walked, closet followed by the whole of Australia yawn

ah no they just showed the world how real leaders protect their citizens. unlike like some leaders playing golf while almost 3000 people a day die and not one mention of the record number of dead

11 ( +18 / -7 )

And all for a disease that still has a pretty specific impact group and an otherwise pretty low mortality rate....

and yet the flu kills around 0.2% of infected while covid19 is between 2~4%

8 ( +13 / -5 )

Not so successful when compared with the North Pole....lol In other words , it was easy to force the numbers down on very far and compared to most other areas quite unpopulated islands. It’s a little success, admitted, but surely not a suitable template for most other countries.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

They eliminated it because their leader is the greatest person that ever walked

I love watching extremist right-wingers hate on Ardern. They're so bitter that she's so popular. If winging were dollars, they'd be billionaires!

8 ( +16 / -8 )

As some other posters have pointed out, it is far easier to eliminate the virus in a country of 4.5 or 5 million. It is easier to enforce lockdowns, it is easier to do contact tracing and it is easier to track or prosecute those who refuse to follow rules.

I don't buy that. With more people, there are more resources to do the work. It scales up.

No, the difference is in the quality of leadership, and the trust in the leadership by the people. If either are missing (and they usually go hand in hand), then there is not a concerted effort towards dealing with the virus, and everything falls apart.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

they just showed the world how real leaders protect their citizens. unlike like some leaders playing golf while almost 3000 people a day die and not one mention of the record number of dead

And we've seen how Ardern used quality leadership to get herself re-elected, and Trump's pathetic leadership led to him becoming The Loser.

4 ( +12 / -8 )

MontyToday  02:53 pm JST

New Zealand did a good job, no question...

BUT...

4.8 Millions population compare to Japan 125.0 Millions, compare to United States 328.0 Millions (if this number is correct) is a big difference and makes things much easier.

If a manager at work has to handle 10 workers or 1000 workers is a complete different situation.

Ah but the real difference between a good manager and an average or bad manager is not just getting people to do what you want them to do, it's making the correct choice of what you want them to do AND getting them to do it.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Australia and New Zealand did an amazing job and have returned to normal life . Half the job was done because their populations listened and took the pandemic seriously.

11 ( +17 / -6 )

Japan is the third largest economy in the world and lives and breathes international trade and travel. It cannot close down like NZ which has a miniscule economy in comparison. The only way a major economy can stop coronavirus is to be autocratic like China and order citizens to follow quarantine, etc. without question.

-11 ( +6 / -17 )

New Zealand’s response to the virus has been among the most successful, together with actions taken by China, Taiwan and Thailand early on in the pandemic.

Don't use China as an example if it wasn't for them and WHO we would not be having a pandemic.

7 ( +13 / -6 )

"No, the difference is in the quality of leadership, and the trust in the leadership by the people."

A very simplistic argument. Leadership is only one aspect. It's got a lot to do with the kind of people, and if they follow government directions with discipline or if they don't out of ignorance or other cultural factors.

"I don't buy that. With more people, there are more resources to do the work. It scales up."

In overpopulated third world countries like mine this argument falls flat on the face. My city itself has a population 4 times that of NZ, there were already chronic problems of the type that a country like NZ would never have to face. Add COVID to the mix and it was a disaster waiting to happen, and pretty sure Ardern if she were the PM of my country would not have been able to do anything about it either.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Ardern is a critical thinker. She saw a problem. Acknowledged it existed. Listened to experts. Implemented a plan. And adjusted that plan as it required flexibility in the unknown, with the best possible execution.

Trump did none of those things, and in fact, did the opposite. Of course, he's the idiot president of the United States, where masses of people are ignorant and lie a whole lot.

Kudos to NZ, I'm happy for the Kiwi's to do so well and lead the world on the Coronavirus issue!!

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Both New Zealand and Japan is a island with tightly controlled borders. Once the virus eliminated, it doesn't matter how many people are inside, or its location, so keeping it out is not a significantly harder task.

The UK is also an island and has managed it worse that anywhere else in Europe

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Japan Singapore South Korea Taiwan did far more better job than New zealand

What is your basis for this? Those countries did a pretty good job, but I wonder what metric you use to determine "far better".

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@mark

Seriously have you not seen the news articles for Japan and South Korea on this site .

More better indeed

-8 ( +4 / -12 )

NZ is an island group like japan.

japan didn’t learn from NZ/Aussie methodically. Instead, we introduce quarrentineless international business visas...

lets watch Singapore...

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Since Singapore was mentioned, this might be of use.....

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-55314862

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@ah-so. Keep up. Italy has the highest number of cases in Europe now.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Job well done NZ.

Yet, it seems the mascots in the background beg to differ!!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I am curious what the landing pad will be to reenter global trade and travel.

World trade has not stopped. NZ like all nations still imports and exports trade goods and services. There are strict protocols to ship and plane crews that land in each nation for testing and quarantine to keep covid out.

Travel and tourism is the area that has stopped all together or is severely restricted. That will be sorted out in 2021 with vaccinations, medical passports and testing an ongoing thing until the pandemic is declared over.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Its easy when government has unlimited authority over it's people. China got it under control in a few months too, and they have 1.4 bil people, because Xi says you should stay at home

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

“It’s over for New Zealand. Everything’s gone.”

USA had 20,000+ and NZ had 12. Somehow, it's NZ that's gone. What a clown.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

@seth

can’t believe you are so naive to believe that China has got it under control.

You believe everything the CCP say do you ?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Technically or Pandemically, few South-East Asian countries are doing better, Vietnam, Brunei?

Well.. Singapore is doing much much better, even in India the number of daily infections and deaths are down by almost 65-70%, and that to w/o any lockdown.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Both New Zealand and Japan is an island with tightly controlled borders. 

The UK is as well,yet they're going through it with the number of cases and deaths every day.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

A small car is easy to drive.

But maybe offers less protection when you crash. Ms. Ardern avoided that potentially catastrophic crash.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

trump, stumped & trumped himself.

A bloated mouth, infected stubby sticky fat fingered middle finger salute he gave New Zealand ended up his own orange nose New Zealand is my home. We have had quakes, mass shootings, a volcano eruption

and a incontinent trump to deal with.

We beat them all. A team of 5.5 million.

I have visited Japan 17 times, after this Pandemic I am wanting to retire there.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

A very simplistic argument. Leadership is only one aspect. It's got a lot to do with the kind of people, and if they follow government directions with discipline or if they don't out of ignorance or other cultural factors.

Um yeah, exactly what I said here:

"The difference is in the quality of leadership, and the trust in the leadership by the people. If either are missing (and they usually go hand in hand), then there is not a concerted effort towards dealing with the virus, and everything falls apart."

In overpopulated third world countries like mine this argument falls flat on the face.

Really? Give me an example of a third world country with quality leadership the people trust, where my argument has fallen flat on its face.

I think you're just bitter that I accurately pointed out how Trump failed America, and how American's distrust in the government means that they have had a pathetic response to the virus.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

can’t believe you are so naive to believe that China has got it under control.

You believe everything the CCP say do you ?

I certainly distrust the majority of what the CCP says. But, I also have seen nothing to indicate that the virus isn't under control in China. And the CCP being a dictator state can dictate that the people must stay home, and they will. Unlike nations where the people have freedom, authoritarian nations actually have an upper hand when it comes to isolating the virus, as they can control the people in a way free states cannot.

As such, it's plausible that China could have it under control, and I've seen nothing to show it's not. So beyond a very valid distrust in the CCP, is there any evidence at all that they haven't got the virus under control in China?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

A lot has been said of the small population, but no real argument or data backing why this is a factor. Look at Taiwan, they have a much larger population and have a similar result. Also, being an island nation does help, but enforcing the border is a bigger factor, as the UK have seen.

The main factor is leadership. Being able to get the population to agree to and comply with the restrictions.

mrtinjp

Well.. Singapore is doing much much better

No. No, it's not.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"where my argument has fallen flat on its face"

Your argument about more people meaning more resources which makes it easier to scale up to combat the virus.

"I think you're just bitter that I accurately pointed out how Trump failed America"

Don't care much about US or Trump for that matter, I am not an American and have never been to the US. To someone prone to hyper partisanship it is obviously difficult to understand that most people don't wear the same kind of partisan lens whether left or right and view things from a much more balanced perspective.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Your argument about more people meaning more resources which makes it easier to scale up to combat the virus.

Um, that's basic logic dude. More people = more resources. How does that logic fall apart?

Whether or not those resources are used effectively depends on both the quality of the leadership as well as the quality of people.

Don't care much about US or Trump for that matter, I am not an American and have never been to the US. To someone prone to hyper partisanship it is obviously difficult to understand that most people don't wear the same kind of partisan lens whether left or right and view things from a much more balanced perspective.

And yet here you are pushing the line of the extremist hyper-partisan Trump.

So your argument falls on its face.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

vanityofvanitiesDec. 16  02:06 pm JST

A small car is easy to drive.

Only if driven by a skilled driver.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The main factor is leadership. Being able to get the population to agree to and comply with the restrictions

You do not have the slightest idea how it works in China. You do what you are told, or you lose your job, the place you live and often go to jail, your family is harassed and loses their jobs and their apartments or you just disappear. My family in Shanghai has some first hand experience with this. But since all the press and social media is centrally controlled and heavily censored you have no idea what is really happening in China if all you do is read their official accounts or trust their official statistics.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If you want to compare leadership and direction between NZ and Japan consider this:

1) NZ closed the borders very early on. Japan tried to keep the borders open for the Olympics. Money talks!

2) NZ rapidly sets up a wage and salary compensation scheme. Companies kept running and workers didn't feel the need to come to work to keep food on the table. They stayed home and had family time.

3) NZ has gone through a sequence of lockdowns to contain and then eradicate the virus. Japan encourages mobility by setting up an extensive domestic tourism campaign in the midle of a surging pandemic.

4) NZ lockdowns only kept essential services (ie the lights on and food on the table). Japan politely asks nightclubs and izikaiya to close at 10pm but you could still get your hair cut and your nails done and go out for a meal.

5) NZ citizens followed instructions and stayed home and they saw their leaders largely doing the same (apart from one who subsequently lost his job). Suga is holding a series of year end dinners with elderly friends despite telling the nation to do exactly the opposite, then starts making excuses when he's called out.

6) NZ businesses rapidly deployed online work tools and remote working. Working from home becomes the norm. Japan struggles with not having the bosses hanko on the timesheets, and being able to 'supervise' employees.

7) NZ schools deploy online learning. Schools deplloy laptops and the government pays for internet connections to low-income earning families to make sure no one misses out. Japan, stubborn resistance from educators insisting that all kids must come to school.

8) NZ. Strict quarantine measures were employed at the border. No visitors are allowed. Citizens and foreign residents were allowed but were required to stay in managed isolation for 14 days and pass COVID testing. Japan . . . . eventually bans everyone except citizens from returning, leaving long term foreign residents out in the cold. Returnees are allowed to return to their homes but are required to self-quarantine . . .please.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Desert Tortoise

The main factor is leadership. Being able to get the population to agree to and comply with the restrictions

You do not have the slightest idea how it works in China.

I wasn't talking about China. I was talking about New Zealand, like the article was about. Try to stay on topic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Everyone keeps commenting that NZ is an island and Australia is an island so that's why COVID was controlled, so is Japan and the UK so why is it still out of control then?. Also NZ and Australia came out of winter and controlled it as well so you can't blame the weather either. Its the simple fact the the populations listened to what they were being told. I don't know why people won't accept that simple fact.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

"that's basic logic dude. More people = more resources"

Really? Since you wish to simplify things with an equation, let me give you another equation

More people = less resources per capita (since resources like number of hospitals, number of doctors can not be increased without substantial investment of capital over substantial period of time)

"And yet here you are pushing the line of the extremist hyper-partisan Trump"

You brought up Trump in an article about NZ and it's PM, not me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

More people = less resources per capita (since resources like number of hospitals, number of doctors can not be increased without substantial investment of capital over substantial period of time)

Um that logic don't work mate. Seriously.

You brought up Trump in an article about NZ and it's PM, not me.

Yeah, cause you're pushing his line.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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