Sunday 22 October 2017

Dark Transactions: Winston Peters' Decision To “Go Left” Has Already Set His Enemies In Motion.

Navigator Of The Dark Side: Winston Peters, the man who broke the Winebox Scandal; wheeled and dealed with the big fishing companies; wined and dined the princes of New Zealand’s bloodstock industry; and took private calls on secluded New Zealand beaches from the US Secretary of State; knows better than just about any other New Zealander how the business of this world gets done.

IN ALL ECONOMIES, and in every political system, there are roped-off areas of shadow and hidden places swathed in deliberate darkness. In these light-starved locations all kinds of disreputable economic and political transactions take place.

If there’s one politician in New Zealand who is familiar, to the point of intimacy, with this unmapped and unacknowledged territory, it’s Winston Peters. The man who broke the Winebox Scandal; wheeled and dealed with the big fishing companies; wined and dined the princes of New Zealand’s bloodstock industry; and took private calls on secluded New Zealand beaches from the US Secretary of State; knows better than just about any other New Zealander how the business of this world gets done.

That Peters, with bitter personal experience of just how dark our politics can get, nevertheless persuaded NZ First to throw in its lot with Labour and the Greens, is astonishing. He must have known that the formation of a government unwilling to settle for “a modified status quo” but determined to usher in “real change”, would instantly mobilise all the initiators and beneficiaries of New Zealand’s neoliberal revolution against him.

Like Franklin Roosevelt before him, however, Peters appeared not to fear the enmity of the nation’s wealthiest and most powerful individuals and institutions, but to welcome it. Without the slightest hesitation, he lifted up the banner of resistance to the red-in-tooth-and-claw Capitalism that, since 1984, New Zealanders have grown to fear and detest:

“Far too many New Zealanders have come to view today’s capitalism, not as their friend, but as their foe. And they are not all wrong. That is why we believe that capitalism must regain its responsible – its human face. That perception has influenced our negotiations.”

Such an open declaration of war against the neoliberal establishment was bound to draw an equally belligerent response. And who better to lead the charge than one of the prime movers of the neoliberal revolution, Richard Prebble. Never one to mince words, Prebble began his opinion piece to the NZ Herald with the following, extraordinary, accusation:

“Let’s not beat about the bush: There has been a coup.

“The political scientists can tell us it’s legal but the fact remains - it is undemocratic. For the first time in our history who governs us is not the result of an election but the decision of one man.”

That there is not a word of truth in any of this (as Prebble, an experienced lawyer and politician must surely realise) matters much less than the deep emotional impression such an inflammatory charge is likely to make on all those New Zealanders bitterly disappointed to see the National Party denied the parliamentary majority it needed to remain in government.

What Prebble is setting up here is a politico-historical narrative alarmingly akin to the Dolchstosslegende – the “stab-in-the-back” legend concocted by far-right German nationalists to explain the Fatherland’s defeat in World War I. According to this “Big Lie”, the German army wasn’t defeated on the field of battle, but by the treachery of the “November Criminals” – Jews and Socialists – who signed, first, the armistice that ended the war, and then, the hated Treaty of Versailles, which imposed a Carthaginian peace on the German nation.

Prebble is nothing if not inventive – embellishing his delegitimising narrative with a vivid political metaphor drawn from Japanese history:

“New Zealand is now a Shogunate. In Japan the Emperor had the title and the Shogun had all the power.

“Jacinda has Premier House and Shogun Peters sets the policies.”

This is highly sophisticated political writing. Not only is Peters cast as the new government’s eminence grise, the power behind the throne, but the status of Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand’s new Prime Minister, is also reduced to that of a naïve puppet. It is “Shogun Peters” who gets to wield the real power.

As if Prebble’s historical musings weren’t insulting enough in themselves, they are heavy with an additional, if unspoken, menace. Those familiar with modern Japanese history know that in 1868 the Shogunate was overthrown by forces determined to restore the power of the Emperor by making him Japan’s ruler in fact as well as in name. In other words, although Peters is in no way guilty of staging a coup, Prebble, himself, is implying that should the new Labour-NZ First-Green Government be successful in installing an anti-neoliberal “shogunate”, a restorative coup-d’etat may be in order.

Prebble is quite explicit about how such coup might begin:

“I predict bureaucratic opposition to this government will be significant. It will start leaking from day one. Everyone knows this coalition of losers has no mandate to implement Winston Peters’ interventionist policies.”

None of this will come as any surprise to Peters. He has had to weather similar attacks many times before in his political career. To Jacinda Ardern and James Shaw, however, such reckless mendacity is likely to be received with a mixture of alarm and dismay. Both leaders are going to need Peters hard-won knowledge of how New Zealand’s “Deep State” operates if they are to mount an effective defence against the Neoliberal Establishment’s dark transactions.

And not only Peters’ protection will be needed. Every progressive New Zealander who understands the magnitude of the fight which Peters’, Ardern’s and Shaw’s decision to pursue “real change” has made inevitable, must be prepared to come to the aid of the three parties – Labour, NZ First and the Greens – which have committed themselves to fulfilling the hopes and dreams of the 50.4 percent of the New Zealand electorate who voted for them.

This essay was originally posted on The Daily Blog of Saturday, 21 October 2017.


Anonymous said...

The trouble is, Kiwis, on the whole are generally fair-minded with a sense of fair play. MMP was never intended to deny the party that polled highest by far, the win, nor was it intended to put the losing bloc into power. First in our history, and the electorate out there will feel a sense of outrage that natural justice was denied, the majority will of New Zealanders was sidelined. 200,000 thousand more votes for Nats, ten more seats than the left bloc. Spin it how you want as those on the left are, but the electorate will punish Greesn/Labour/NZ First such an arrogant grab of unmandated power, especially as it all turns to custard, the economy takes a dive (but don't blame Winston), taxes and living costs rise, wages stay low, and much unwanted pc drivel is force fed down our throats. Prebble is right, it is a coup, and I bet the electorate, at the first possible chance, (not just Nat supporters either) will punish all three parties harshly. We now have a govt without any moral authority, it was purely at the whim of Winston, at seven percent and no electorate seat. MMP was never meant to deliver such nonsense, but the left siezed power anyway, so desperate. I bet they will pay a very high price, in a very short time
indeed. By the way, if the shoe had been on the other foot, and Winston and denied power to a morally mandated Labour party, the howls of derision and outrage from both the left and the biased MSM would be deafening. For my money, this will be a one-term government, if that. MMP ra ra ra whatever, it's now been severly compromised in the view of the New Zealand electorate. Best thing, Winston basically just cut his own throat, along with his new mates.

Jens Meder said...

As long as the new government moves toward achieving its goals in a fiscally responsible way as promised, it can "laugh off" any any attacks from the libertarian extremists, because it is their myopic, hedonistic and almost anarchic liberalism that "everyone knows best what is best for them" that led to the increasing and unpopular socio-economic polarization of society into increasingly wealthy "Haves" and an increasing proportion of "Have-Nots".

If the "new capitalism" reverses that trend through widening participation in wealth creation and ownership, then would not the shortcomings of both the extreme "Right" and "Left" end up in the "dustbin" of history ?

greywarbler said...

There is evidence of nastier comments about than the normal backwash from RWs. Polluted waters are not only in the rivers, but in people's minds. To restore health to the country will be a task.

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"MMP was never intended to deny the party that polled highest by far, the win, nor was it intended to put the losing bloc into power."
Er..... Someone else with intimate knowledge of the intentions of those who introduced MMP./Sarc.

Guerilla Surgeon said...

Unless Labour gets off its arse, the right will continue to set the narrative, which they've been doing since nineteen eighty-four – actually even earlier if you remember the dancing Cossacks. It's time to change the bloody narrative for God's sake.

Unknown said...

The majority was not sidelined, and people need to bloody stop saying that, or get better at math. It's next to impossible for the majority to get side-lined under MMP, cause well... You need a majority of seats to form a government. If National had enough seats on their own (Or was one short with act as their only partner) then they would have had the majority (Though, they might still have had less than the majority of -actual- votes, seeing that act got in on an electorate vote and barely got 0.5% of the total country vote, which is about 0.33 percent short of a seat. Which is another point that I won't bring up here, but in short, the 5% threshold needs to be done away with).

If NZ First had sided with National, then the National supporters screaming foul now would have been all "MMP working as intended, and there likely would have been Labour supporters calling MMP unfair, so tit-for-tat.

Long story short. MMP is working like it's meant to, the majority of the country is represented by the new government, even if it's barely the majority. And, because I think people tend to forget this... When National took government in 2008, it was with a -five- party coalition. The represented the majority of NZ at the time.

Things have shifted. They will likely shift again in the future.

Welcome to democracy.

fran said...

what nonsense

Daniel Schealler said...

You're wrong about MMP. MMP is explicitly designed to make this kind of coalition government possible.

The entire point of MMP is to ensure proportional representation by putting an end to minority rule.

If the biggest minority is an automatic winner, that means that the automatic winner is a party that most people didn't vote for.

Our current LAB/NZF/GP government represents the proportion of Kiwis who voted for those parties, and they carry a majority in parliament.

MMP is a vastly fairer and more democratic system Hydra's it is.

First Past the Post is dead. Long live Mixed Member Proportional.

David Stone said...

@ Anonymous 17.08
When Andrew Little handed over to Jacinda and the polls veered violently toward labour, those NZF supporters who would have strongly wished Winston to go with the nats went that way themselves as the possibility of a Labour led government presented.
By the time of the election everyone new the possibilities and those NZF voters that remained had to have been content at least that the outcome would be as it is.
Green voters all new they were voting for an arrangement that put Labour into office without question.
The negotiated end result was the perfectly appropriate outcome of balancing the most critical issues that the three parties campaigned on. The process has been an outstanding example of a democratic process working as it should.
If they can all carry on as amicably and effectively as they have started it will be great.

@ Jens Mader
"As long as the new government moves toward achieving its goals in a fiscally responsible way as promised"
I wholeheartedly agree!
Of course the prime consideration in being fiscally responsible must be to come to thoroughly understand and acknowledge the pervading financial , monetary and banking system the government is operating under. Which the previous labour finance minister recently demonstrated that either he did not, or remains determined that the public do not.
This understanding must inevitably lead to acknowledging that as nearly all if not all money in circulation only arises as someone's debt to a bank somewhere in the economy; Either the government carries that debt ( at currently negligible cost), or it is forced onto the private sector, or else it is either paid off or defaulted on and the money goes out of existence.
This is a mad money system and it will have to change one day, but we can't change it on our own without massive disruption to our international trade, so in the meantime screwing down on social services, allowing people to live on the streets and families in cars , and starving the health system is no only pointlessly inhuman but fiscally counterproductive.
As long as they get their heads around that they will do just fine.

Peter Shone said...

Anonymous, why can't you put your name to this statement? I rate your piece as worthless rhetoric simply because you lack the guts to put sign you name instead of a cowardly " anonymous"!
Furthermore, I feel that people who comment should always identify themselves as it imposes a stricter discipline of accountability.

Kevin Hearle said...

Annonamous reads it correctly, Peters has made a fundamental mistake. A better approach would have been to go with National and steer a successful government into caring more for those who have not benefited from globalization and to clean up the environment. Socialism has proved a failure in every instance around the world. Climate Change (Global Warming) now that the real science rather than the leftist politicised science is emerging is benign and generally beneficial especially to an agricultural economy such as ours. The new Government policy is deeply rooted in alarmist outdated science of the 1990's. The ideology of the Leftist Green agenda will cost us dearly with the misallocation of resources in what will inevitably be a command and control economy. The best example of failed left/green policy is the ETS and its like around the world, in every case a failure and who gets to bear the cost the middle class and the poor.
Enjoy the next 3 year of a Peters induced backward step into FAILED green socialism.

Sean O'Connnor said...

Had Peters gone with National, all the same comments about him stabbing people in the back would be circling around, it would just be a different group of people making it. Social media for the last few weeks has been replete with people saying that that is exactly how they would take it if he went with (insert my disfavoured party here).

So seeing that as a piece of a historical pattern unique to the right wing is silly, IMO.

For what its worth, I'm extremely right wing, and haven't seen coup references or claims of illegitimacy, other than Prebble's. I've seen a lot of predictions of economic doom and a lot of complaints about MMP. I submit the WhaleOil comments section as evidence.

peteswriteplace said...

There has been some very nasty comments indeed on Facebook.Public servants will have a job to do in supporting the new government's policies, or find another job. Right must overcome might. We have waited nearly 30 years for some sign of an emergence of political intestinal fortitude evident to claw back satanic neoliberalism. There is support out there for a return to Kiwi values of decency and fairness.Richard Prebble can return to his stinking swamp from which he was created.

Kat said...

Chris, I thought you had banned "Anonymous" trolling and that a name was required to post.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous
The fair-minded public understand MMP better than you. It is not the single party with the most votes tha deserves the right to govern, but the combination of parties that can achieve a working majority of seats in the House. National could not do that because they cannibalised their earlier support patties and did not have enough common ground on policies to attract any one else. So not a coup at all, but MMP working as it was intended, to give the reins of power to the parties that represent the true majority of voters. You and the likes of Prebble are living still in the age of FFP, one of the most unfair voting systems around.

Loz said...

Over the past four elections, National voters have been a consistent 35% - 37% of registered electors. It's only because the number of people participating in the election fluctuates that 37% of registered electors can translate to nearly 50% of the votes cast.

In truth, National has never been particularly popular and can't claim to have a mandate or moral majority... but no other party can either!

Now that the final votes have been counted, National received 1,152,075 compared to Labour & Greens 1,118,627. Claims of "Natural Justice" for a continuation of the National government betrays a bizarre sense of entitlement & poor understanding of MMP.

Unknown said...

Isn't this all getting a bit sinister and heavy? Guess what people we had an election. A peaceful one. The result was that a coalition of parties collectively have enough seats to form a government. You don't have to like the result, but you *really* should respect it. The fact that we can do this without anyone being beaten or being blown up is something we should be extremely grateful for, as it's becoming an increasingly rare thing in this age. If you don't like the result, take a deep breath and relax. In a few years you can vote again. I'm becoming increasingly disillusioned with the current social media and political rend of just shouting at people you disagree with until they give up or go away. Take a good look at American politics, that's where we are heading. Is that want we want for NZ? How about we conduct ourselves with a little more dignity and maturity instead, and get on with things until the next circus comes to town.

terryjd said...

the left seized power??? NZ First negotiated with both Labour and National but chose to enter into coalition with Labour after discussion with it's members . If that was not a legitimate decision it would not be happening. This coalition have a majority under MMP despite the dirty politics that National again embraced to intimidate skittish voters. Your prophecies for this gvt are exactly what has happened under National...."taxes and living costs rise, wages stay low".... not to mention serious pollution of our waterways, unaffordable housing, homelessness , poverty ......but why should you care Mr Anonymous

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous
On the contrary, fair-minded Kiwis understand perfectly well that the party with the most votes, but is unable to reach a working majority of seats in the House, and is unable to cobble together a coalition to do so, does not deserve the reins of power. The majority of voters split their votes across several parties, three of which have found enough compatibility in policies to form a coalition that has a workable majority in the House. Quite simply Labour, NZ 1st and the Greens have won the mandate of a majority of voters to form the government. National cannibalised their former support parties, and had not enough policy compatibility with any others to do so. You are still thinking under first past the post, one of the unfairest systems around, and under which several times National became the government with fewer votes than Labour - those were the times of arrogant grabs of power.

DavidG said...

Those who comment that National had a mandate from their so-called majority are probably the disenchanted that Prebble is appealing to. In fact, no party won a majority, and the electorate knew well beforehand of the Labour-Greens alliance. Peters knew exactly what he was doing, from the day after election he made it clear there were several legally valid coalition options, and also made it clear he was focused on the two most workable - one with National, the other with Labour-Greens. The longer the negotiations went the more likely it would be a carefully decided outcome, of either option. No surprise.

Ray Wilson said...


Chris Trotter said...

Hi, Kat.

You're quite right about anonymous contributions - and I delete 90 percent of them. Some I do let through, however, because they so perfectly encapsulate a particular set of arguments from a particular location on the political spectrum. Anonymous@22/10/17-17:08 being a wonderful example!

Kat said...

Hi Chris,

yes I did wonder if that was your motivation (chuckle).

The thread has ended up another discussion on MMP and the outcome of the election, guess there are people genuinely that thick.

The threats emerging from the neoliberal dark forces against Winston, Jacinda and James are already very evident though. All three will certainly have their work cut out and Winston will have to be at his wily best in converting the Fed Farmers and sanitising the "Deep State".

I can just see John Key being used as a "commentator" leveraging his newly appointed position with the ANZ.

Victor said...

I don't know WHY we have MMP. But I do know why we SHOULD have it.

It's not primarily because it leads to hung parliaments, multi-party coalitions etc. These can all happen under FPP and, indeed, have done so with some frequency in the UK since the 1970s.

Conversely, an MMP election can sometimes (albeit rarely) provide a single party with a majority. From memory, Konrad Adenauer's CDU managed this in Germany in the 1950s, although some pedants might argue that its Bavarian wing, the CSU, was a separate party.

The chief virtue of MMP is, however, that it assures your vote counts, even when you disagree with a plurality of your neighbours (which, in my case, happens to be all the time).

This means that, if you vote Labour in Tamaki or National on the west coast of the South Island, you're not wasting your time. Likewise if you vote for a smaller party.

The word I use to describe this happy situation is "democracy".

Long may it flourish!

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"Socialism has proved a failure in every instance around the world."

"now that the real science rather than the leftist politicised science is emerging"

I'm not sure that these two statements deserve anything more than "bullshit" to be honest, but:

1. The only socialism that has proven a failure around the world has been controlled economy communist dictatorships. And I'm not sure where China fits in there, because you could argue that their economy is very successful. What we have here, and what New Zealand parties tend to embraces social democracy. Which is probably the most successful political philosophy ever.

2. The only politicised science in the question of global warming is from the extreme right. They have cobbled together a loose coalition of people who know nothing about science, people who don't have qualifications in the relevant fields of science, and weird right wing religious people, who claim that the global warming doesn't exist, or if it does the results are beneficial. Well, we'll see what happens when your beachfront property is under water. :) But even if you don't believe the rather hackneyed idea that 97% of scientists believe in global warming, a huge proportion of scientists with the relevant qualifications, absent a few mathematicians who for some reason don't like the models, believe that global warming is real, caused by humans, and some of the consequences are going to be dire. About the only other great idea that has a similar number of scientists in favour of it is evolution. But that it's quite possible you don't believe in that either.

Anonymous said...

Prebble's statement is most useful, not as any historical or constitutional commentary, but as an illustration of what New Zealand's ruling class is thinking right now. It's an inverse of 1996, where the Right and not the Left is the one left screaming "We Wuz Robbed" - but the Right (unlike the post-1991 Left) can actually wield immense social power without actually being in government.

In short, the Nats and their allies are coming for MMP. Winston blindsided them this time, but they will not make the same mistake again.

greywarbler said...

Thanks for that explanation Chris. Anonymi should be able to think of a simple name in this complicated technological age. Repeat contributions indicate a lack of commitment to the tolerating community. They don't have to put their real name, just Turnup will do. The spelling will draw attention even if the thinking has gaps.

Victor said...

It's already apparent that the less scrupulous elements in New Zealand's establishment are out to "get" the government elect, by hook or by crook.

Witness the tendentious vamping of material from Corin Dann's above average interview with Jacinda on yesterday's Q&A, to provide headline beat-ups (replete with carefully edited optics) for TV One's subsequent early evening and late night "news" slots.

I was expecting the assault to be a mite more subtle and to take a week or so to get going. How wrong I was.

Charles E said...

Considerable over-reaction Chris but same for some of your opponents. Prebble just letting off steam coz he detests Peters who, let's face it is a ignorant old git who should have been dispatched by electors again, but there he is now to piss us off. The right today, and the left tomorrow.
As a devoted Tory I have to say to my crowd, be glad your fine leader (we have had the two best in a row in a generation or more) did not cave into this shit. It is a good result for us and for NZ in the long run. Either Cinderella and the little bad wolf will be harmless and do an ok job for us or they will go down in a heap and that will be the end of them.

So chill guys, it will not be a socialist government. There will be no new taxes, except you will not get the cut we deserve next April. They will run out of money and not be able to afford even half their promises. Sit back and enjoy the show, uncontaminated by the Kiwi mini Trump. The only MP we have who was proved a liar in Court. In the winebox case. Look up the Judge' decision.

John Callen said...

Prebble is irrelevant

Unknown said...

@ Peter Shone
This may shine light on the identity of Anonymous.

A copy of his script was posted by Matt King National Party MP for Northland as "Interesting comments taken from a blog site about the election results"

Shirley Knuckey said...

We're going to need strong stomachs to withstand the onslaught of bile, vitriol and misogyny ahead. I looked in on Q&A yesterday and Corin Dann's charmless effort was an eye-opener. No "Congratulations" opening and an attacking interview style surely not seen before at the very opening of a new Prime Ministerial tenure. Yet this remarkable young woman was quite unfazed, noted appropriately that some questions were not hers to answer (e.g. some issues in the Greens dedepartment) and was relaxed despite the huge exhaustion being felt. She already shows she values Winston as senior to her and accords him that respect in referring to him as Mr Peters. Corin Dann whilst not a patch on Mike Hosking for sheer egregiousness was clesrly stung by the fact that he achieved not a single "get" in his attacking stint. Water off a duck's back for this unterviewee. Ms Ardern hss a steel-trap thought process. Everything is at her fingertips and with a smile'. Suck it up you guys.

Anonymous said...

It appears Anonymous is Matt King, National MP for Northland, as this is the text he had posted on his Facebook page, but I understand now removed. Either he or someone else cut and pasted (without attributing)

Gerrit said...

Am surprised that anyone did not expect the "enemy" not to be mobilised. The point of any political machine is to be sitting on the treasure benches. Handing out olive branches to your opposition is not going to achieve that.

I think Nationals attacks will be primarily focused at NZ First. The are the weakest link.

It is going to be interesting to see how the cogs of government will function as the National party has the biggest number of seats and as such will command 55% of all parliamentary resources plus will have the majority (by fact of highest representation numbers in parliament) of members on any select committee. If a select committee has eleven MP’s, 5 will be National, 4 Labour and one each NZ First and Greens. The three government whips are going to be very busy making sure legislation gets through the select committee’s.

National will have the majority of questions at Question Time in parliament and how National will formulate questions to the three government parties is strategically interesting. They will try and divide and disrupt as a good opposition should.

Kat said...

So it appears Matt King MP for Northland has been identified as "Anonymous". National must be very worried as even though they hold the electorate seats of Whangarei and Northland the overall party vote for National was below that of Labour/Greens/NZFirst who are now the govt elect.

Winston is 1,389 votes behind Matt King in the seat of Northland. I suspect the good people of Northland may want to be part of the govt next election. I don't hold out much political hope for an electorate MP displaying such ignorance of our constitutional law.
This from a man who was a fraud investigator and previously a NZ Police Detective.

Best stick to farming Mr King.

Victor said...

Shirley Knuckey

I thought the boy Corin was a bit graceless simply because he's the boy Corin and that he nevertheless asked questions that were well worth asking.

Jacinda's answers were first class and, I agree with you, she 's a remarkable young woman.

But the devil lay in the beat-ups made of this interview in the subsequent news bulletins, including the manipulation of screen images.

I have no great expectations of fairness from New Zealand media. Even so, I was dumb-struck by the lack of restraint and circumspection.

We're in for a bumpy ride!

Kat said...

Oh,and here is a very simple example that possibly even Matt King can understand on how MMP works.

There's one mince and cheese pie left in the shop it costs $5.

Bill (English) has $4.50.

Jacinda (Ardern) has $3.70.

Winston (Peters) has 70c.

James (Shaw) has 60c and David (Seymour) has 5c.

No one has enough money to buy the pie by themselves but Jacinda, Winston and James put their money together and buy the pie.

Bill gets no pie because he needed 50c but didn't have any friends to help him pay for the pie.

Victor said...


I'm not a huge Winston fan.

But I'm delighted to see him back at Foreign Affairs, a portfolio in which he distinguished himself last time around.

Moreover, I can't think of anyone better qualified in personality terms for dealing with a world of Trumps, Putins and Xis.

In fact, I can't really think of anyone in the Labour caucus (apart possibly for Jacinda herself) who was even remotely qualified for this role.

And now, for the same reason, we also need Ron Mark at Defence.

Hopefully, by the time my comment appears on your site, this need will be met.

Unknown said...

So either Anonymous is Matt King, or he has to steal Matt King's comments because he (Anonymous) cant think of anything original to write, so he copies and pastes Matt King's comments.
I wonder if Matt King knows this.
Does Anonymous know if Matt King knows?
Who is is Matt King anyway (other than being MP for Northland)?

Do we care? Does Anonymous?

peteswriteplace said...

Prebble is anonymous.

Anonymous said...

Prebble also predicted that this will be the most unpopular government in our history.
He is right when he says that Jacinda Ardern does not have a mandate. The new Government was back-footed by Peters already, who told us 'not to blame' them when it all goes wrong.
Labour must have cringed, and English has grabbed hold of that already. Should be a potent weapon. Surely Peters' speech should make history for not only the fact that he didn't let Ardern make an announcement first, that she didn't even know she had been chosen, and that much of said he was, for an incoming government, highly negative!
In my books, for a Government that won an election by significant numbers to now be relegated to Opposition, simply because the second, third and fourth place-getters out-auctioned them in the negotiations is highly undemocratic. The people did not choose them, re Nats highly outpooled Labour and Greens combined.
A seven percent party and a five per cent party, each with no electorate seat, will now be driving major policy and changing the direction of the country, What an outrage. I suspect Prebble wil be proven right, this government will indeed go down in history for how unpopular it proves to be. It has started off badly already, re Peter's speech! Good luck to Labour at undoing that damage easily.

Anonymous said...

Please, when Newshub is quoting from the top post 'MMP attacked online' could they at least have the courtesy of quoting as it was written, which they have taken, out of context anyway, (leftie biased media, again) 'MMP was never intended to deny the party that polled highest the win, nor was it intended to put the losing bloc into power' However, Newshub quoted 'MMP was never intended to deny the party that polled highest the win, nor was it intended to put the losing block into power'. Very sneaky to add that 'k' onto 'bloc', just to try and diss it more...

As was mentioned in the post, if the shoe was on the other foot, with Winston granting unmandated power to National even though Labour had won the election, the MSM would be crying foul, along with Labour's cohorts. Instead of course, we hear not a peep other than 'that is MMP.' It's always different when the left do it.

Much kudos to Matt King for ousting Winston from his Northland seat. Not that Winston will care much though. He has bagged the Deputy throne instead, along with many other baubles and prizes. Wonder what Joe Public thinks of that?

Kiwi Betty said...

Re original post, was happy to add my identity, just happened to be signed out at the time of writing it.

Mark Simpson said...

Many years ago I read Prebble's book, "I've been Thinking." Devoid of vitriol, he eloquently and concisely explained his right wing philosophy as it applied then, to NZ and, regardless of one's political leaning, a reasonable person couldn't begrudge him a modicum of respect. However, unlike his "Brothers in Arms", Michael Bassett and Roger Douglas, he seems to have descended into such an embittered and blinkered torpor, his analytical credibility is now void.

He, the brave "Anonymous," all the chest beating "We was robbed!" right wing commentators, et al seem so distraught at being denied their "Right to Rule" that they seem eager to see this government (and Mr. Peters) crash and burn. What if, after three years, our waterways are cleaned up, houses are affordable, homelessness and child poverty are consigned to history, etc, will this mob acknowledge these achievements or, (more likely) regress into an aggrieved, ill-tempered stupor?

All of you, like Prebble, a making fools of yourselves for being such poor losers. Do better!

Anonymous said...

The problem is though, the sticking point for Labour, is that they lost the actual election. That's how many will see it, no matter what the legality of MMP.
Also, what is the point of an expensive general election if Peters gets to decide anyway? One could write a book (Ian Wishart has I believe, on Winston Peters) and make a documentary about the rise and fall of MMP in NZ. It's been an absolute disaster, as Winston Peters has gerrymandered it two times.
At least Peter Dunne was able to put a handbrake on him x 1 time. Peter Dunne had integrity 'I will go with the party with the most votes, not 'I will talk to the party that polls highest first'. There was such a clue in the wording!! (Which it seemed some now disgruntled NZ First voters missed; that staggers me).

So Peters is in Government, with Deputy PM, Foreign Affairs and lots of portfolios, whilst his party's mandate was only seven percent, no seat. This just looks ridiculous and makes NZ a laughing stock on the world stage. A very poor look for Labour.
In the press there is much outrage already in the public opinion pages. I just don't see how Labour thinks they can grow their popularity and vote share to match National's or to overtake it, from such a dodgy starting point.
National have already bolted out of the gates of Opposition, grabbing the mantle for re-election in 2020, taking it to Labour. WP even gifted them a golden freebie to start with. Absolutely classic.

jh said...

Mai Chen of the Superdiversity Stocktake is on the board of the BNZ.

BNZ Sponsors New Finance Professorship

glenn boyle
October 25, 2017 at 12:50 pm
If only there were some “hard-headed analysis of the economic costs and benefits to New Zealanders” — all I hear from the anti-immigration crowd is rhetoric interspersed with waffle. As I’ve repeatedly pointed out, there’s overwhelming international evidence on the benefits of trade in human capital (just like in all other goods and services), but for some unknown reason this is deemed irrelevant to NZ (even when the data include NZ).

Michael Reddell
October 25, 2017 at 1:03 pm
If you want to engage with the serious arguments I’ve mounted over the years, which have been given credence by, among others, the Productivity Commission, I’d be very happy to hear the counter-arguments.

There is good reason why govt-sponsored immigration would not be beneficial to natives always and everywhere (which is not, at all, the same as an argument that there might not be overall gains: migrants presumably gain or they would not migrate, and we’ve had a very large number of migrants in the last 25 years.

How many economists aren't highly paid hacks for vested interests?

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"A seven percent party and a five per cent party, each with no electorate seat, will now be driving major policy and changing the direction of the country"

No, actually they won't. Minor parties have never changed the direction of the country except around the fringes. So just stop saying this, it shows a complete lack of understanding of the role of minor parties in a coalition government. I mean even Winston has admitted this FFS.

"The problem is though, the sticking point for Labour, is that they lost the actual election."

No, that's not how MMP works like it or not. And if many people see it that way that's because they are ignorant about MMP. And to be honest I'm a little tired of explaining it to people. But here we are again.

Unknown said...

@ Anonymous
"In my books, for a Government that won an election by significant numbers..... "
Is one of them titled ""Maths for anonymous dummies"?

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"(leftie biased media, again)"

Yeah right. The New Zealand media is run by companies whose job it is to sell papers not to serve the public. They have completely abandoned any public service leftie bullshit years ago if indeed they ever had any. Even national radio for God's sake. Look who they've employed in the past – Lindsay Perigo – Maggie Barry – and that arse who still on radio but whose name I forgotten and I'm damned if he's worth the effort of looking up.

" Very sneaky to add that 'k' onto 'bloc', just to try and diss it more..."

Wow Conservative paranoia much? Occam's razor would suggest that this is a cub reporter who simply can't spell. The sort of person who writes "Tow the line." :)

pat said...

Tribal dosnt really cover it......fanaticism perhaps?

sumsuch said...

There is something double-edged about your '50.4 %'.

sumsuch said...

Ah, Prebble. 'Narrative'? No,just him.

'Highly sophisticated political writing' ??!! To those who don't know him he has credit. I aim for that, but even I won't get through life without credit.

This convolution makes me feel better, as opposed to m'dread native Calvinism.