Who said this?

January 8th, 2008 at 9:25 am by David Farrar

A reader has sent me a speech made by an MP who voted for the Electoral Finance Act. His speech was on 12 Nov 2003, and he seems to have forgotten it – some extracts:

In other words, we live under a system that amounts to a Labour dictatorship and MMP has made little difference to that.Democracy is too important to be left to the politicians. We say it is far better to rely on the commonsense of ordinary people to make decisions on the important issues facing New Zealand. Why? Because politicians simply cannot be relied on to do the right thing and to act in accordance with the wishes of the majority. They have forgotten that they should be the trusted servants of the people. They must face the consequences of their memory loss.

We desperately need checks and balances and a system that makes politicians accountable. We simply have to trust the people and to rely on their good will and commonsense. In a democracy people have the right to govern themselves and take matters into their own hands when their MPs fail them. When people elect a government to safeguard their society, their security, culture, their liberty and their future, their elected representatives must listen to them. Democracy is lost when that elected government and its officials fail to hear the voices of the people. It is then that ordinary people have a moral duty to rise up and restore democracy themselves.

Amazing how forgetful you get after a few baubles.

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41 Responses to “Who said this?”

  1. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    Well, well, well. What a FIIIIIIIINE speech. Now if somebody would just get a copy of it put in every letterbox in NZ……………..

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  2. Manolo (13,837 comments) says:

    The “poodletician” will soon be sent to the dustbin of history. Fingers crossed and NZF will be no more!

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  3. tim barclay (886 comments) says:

    It seems the Labour Party tricked their minor support parties on a piece of legislation where the devil laid in the detail. And Cullen and Clark are very very good with detail. Peters never reads anything and Fitzsimons and her Green colleges will support anything that shafts the National Party. And the Greens do not appear to be particularly bright, just good average people who really see Green issues as a platform to bring in socialism. But let us see how the law is going to be applied and it seems people are willing to test it. If the legislation clamps down on free speach too heavily the Labour Party may well find itself in a very bad position especially if public sentiment is moving sharply against them anyway.

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  4. vto (1,131 comments) says:

    winston bjeikle-peterson i take it.

    further proof that politicians talk bullshit. It is no wonder that they are not trusted (esp. a clown like him). All they ever do is say whatever needs to be said at the time.

    Meanwhile we slave our guts out earning a living and putting a roof over our heads and food in our bellies and they take near 45% of our efforts and treat us with such contempt.

    I truly hate politicians like peters

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  5. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    “Democracy is lost when that elected government and its officials fail to hear the voices of the people. It is then that ordinary people have a moral duty to rise up and restore democracy themselves.”
    I couldn’t have expressed it better myself.
    Of course this is from someone whose Fundamental Priinciple reads:
    “Electoral reform will be determined by the electors. The Government’s duty will be to ensure the fair representation of all views and the holding of appropriate referenda.”

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  6. vto (1,131 comments) says:

    Peters is a fucking lying c**t

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  7. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    GREAT few paragraphs though. He is on record as supporting the Swiss system of Binding Citizens’ Initiated Referendums, but seems to have disappeared off the radar lately aye?!

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  8. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    That’s an odious comparison to what I feel is a spectacular piece of anatomy, VTO the anatomy to which you refer is useful, functional and at times entertaining. You can’t say any of the above about the person you compared it to.

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  9. poneke (280 comments) says:

    I’m still waiting for his evidence that a Cook Strait ferry scraped its bottom in 1986. :-)

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  10. Lindsay Addie (1,529 comments) says:

    I’m still waiting for his evidence that a Cook Strait ferry scraped its bottom in 1986

    That same person will get severe scraping on his bottom at the 2008 election once the voters have finished with him.

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  11. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    Winston ‘Bury-me-in-an-L-shaped-coffin’ Peters

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  12. dad4justice (8,238 comments) says:

    Oh no, winny the pooh has put his foot in it again .Who needs a wine box inquiry to shatter the integrity of a lost the plot government. Thank you silver fox, as electioneering has just become that much easier. I’ll make sure every voter in my city is aware of damming words. And winny, if you read this matey, remember winny that to be a skilled liar, you must have a good memory, but who cares, as no doubt you’ll say that you didn’t write it and you can’t remember saying it. Just blame the korsakoff syndrome eh ?

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  13. Yvette (2,823 comments) says:

    “Because politicians simply cannot be relied on to do the right thing and to act in accordance with the wishes of the majority. They have forgotten that they should be the trusted servants of the people.”

    Well, at least Winston, retains a shred of integrity by demonstrating what he says here is true, by the evidence of his recent actions.

    “They must face the consequences of their memory loss.”
    So I am more than keen to demonstrate to him he is right is saying this too, by my actions at the end of this year, or hopefully sooner!

    “It is then that ordinary people have a moral duty to rise up and restore democracy themselves.”
    Right on, Winston – I certainly will try to do that.

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  14. John Dalley (394 comments) says:

    Must be a slow news day DPF and you feel a need to whip up the troops.
    I see it doesn’t take much to rark up some of the regular illiterates.

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  15. vto (1,131 comments) says:

    so mr dalley, you dont see any problem with peters’ speech then and his actions now? seriou question

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  16. Mark (496 comments) says:

    It doesn’t take much when you realize the current government is full of corrupt, lying incompetent fools.

    But be a lefty that’s par for the course.

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  17. NZD.JPY (130 comments) says:

    I just imagined john dalley trying to tell us all off for finding this funny while walking around the playground with a “I’m a dick” note stuck to his back.

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  18. bookemDano (10 comments) says:

    I remember just after WP was made foreign minister outside cabinet how we all chuckled (me included) that this would be his and the govt’s undoing in short order …> how wrong we were. Never underestimate the the woodle nor his current political masters- no matter what he has said in the past!

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  19. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Winston’s entering the race again for Tauranga and Bob the builder is considering retiring from the electorate. I wonder if Bob’s decision is because he believes he will win and doesn’t want to face that.

    I also wonder if Bob has come to the conclusion he can’t make any change in the Beehive. He talked of all the taxes his hard working staff pay and even in parliament there’s nothing he can do about that.

    For myself if he stands down I believe his real statement is that the parliament he envisioned is a crock and a fraud.

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  20. gd (2,286 comments) says:

    Note the Electoral Commission are investigating an ACT supporter who has set up a a dont vote for Labour website but not included his name and address.

    Contrast this with the fact that one can give substanial funds to a political party without being named so the citizens dont know what favours the donation has purchased.

    Its going to be an never ending pleasure exposing the 2 faced hyprocracy that is the EFA. One is licking ones lips at the prospect.

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  21. vto (1,131 comments) says:

    Hey John Dalley, you still haven’t answered the question (10.50am).

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  22. aardvark (417 comments) says:

    “We desperately need checks and balances and a system that makes politicians accountable”

    Well funny, that’s what I’ve been saying for years and I even have a solution to tout. http://aardvark.co.nz/rproxy.shtml

    The problem is that nobody with power wants to relinquish it to “mere voters” so I doubt we’ll ever see it happen.

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  23. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    Yesterday, John Dalley acccused John Key of being a political opportunist , even though he had no basis to do so, but when Winston Peters is caught on record displaying the ethical fortitude of a crack-whore, he trivialises it.

    Which is it JD do you value honesty, or are you just like Winston, making it up as you go along, because it makes you think you are somehow empowered by lying through your teeth?

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  24. Yvette (2,823 comments) says:

    Last I heard, New Zealand First still intended donating the misappropriated funds to a charity rather than pay it back rightfully to where they took it from.
    Not only will this make any of their finances, crime, or law and order utterances utter nonsense, but now that the EFA is in effect will this amount, being used to supposedly enhance the voter image of New Zealand First, be counted in their overall election campaign allowance?

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  25. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    Never underestimate WP. I’d love him to be out on his ear this election, but past performance suggests that he’ll be pulling another rabbit out of his hat.

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  26. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    Yvette that’s why Winston tried to off-load the cash on starship before Jan 1st, because deep down, he knew the facile show-boating was an election-seeking gambit thereofre it could be claimed it was an election expense.
    By the way, why is NZ First letting Winston take all the s**t they are all in bed together, and not one of them has the balls to condemn their tinpot leader.

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  27. Tookinator (221 comments) says:

    Here is another recent one from NZ First.

    Below is a PR from them in 2004 complaining that there is no organ donor register etc. But guess what? just a few weeks before xmas NZ first voted against Jackie Blue MP’s bill for a register and voted in favour of the government bill which will not establish a register……

    6 Dec 2004

    Barbara Stewart
    Media Release
    ORGAN DONATION BACK IN TOO HARD BASKET

    New Zealand First’s health spokesperson Barbara Stewart is disappointed that the Minister of Health has not accepted the Health Select Committee’s recommendation that a national organ donor register be established.

    “This is the second time in a year that the Minister has rejected the advice of the select committee on the issue of organ donation, said Mrs Stewart.

    “If the Minister was serious about improving our dismal organ donation rates she would be taking a more proactive stance than simply deferring any action until next year at the earliest and possibly even further down the track, said Mrs Stewart.

    “We are left with the current driver’s licence system for recording organ donor preferences which many donors believe is an official record of their wish to donate but which in fact is a total waste of time.

    “The Minister has passed up another opportunity to set in place a system which works and in the meantime people waiting for transplants are no better off than they were before the select committee considered this issue,” said Mrs Stewart.

    ENDS

    The Greens also voted against a register, this is despite their press release in 2003 as follows:

    Greens support register for organ donors

    Sue Kedgley MP, Green Party Health Spokesperson

    26th November 2003

    The Green Party is calling for the establishment of a national register of organ donors, administered by a dedicated national agency, following a unanimous recommendation from Parliament’s Health Select Committee.

    “It is a tragedy that New Zealanders are dying because of a lack of organ donors when I am certain many people would be willing to donate if they were aware of the problem,” said Green Health spokesperson, Sue Kedgley.

    Ms Kedgley said that New Zealand has one of the lowest number of organ donations in the world, with only 37 donors last year and a waiting list for donations of more than 350. She said the present system of indicating interest in organ donation through a driving license system is completely ineffective and should be scrapped.

    “The Government should provide leadership on this issue,” said Ms Kedgley. “We have to develop a system that makes it simple and easy for donors. And we need a wide-ranging public information campaign to encourage more New Zealanders to sign up as donors, after proper discussion with their families.

    “I strongly support our committee’s recommendation for government funding of such a long overdue campaign and I congratulate Andy Tookey for raising this issue.”

    Talk about flip flops, the minor parties do it more often than anyone else but it doesn’t get reported so often.

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  28. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    To true Lee C the whole of New Zealand first are two faced gutless pricks and the whole lot should be ashamed of themselves. I watched these arseholes while this bill was been voted through, all sat there with fucking big grins on their faces. Just goes to show the Minister of Baubles would say or do anything to save his sorry arse.

    And John Dalley, like many in this country represent a brain dead minority . He is more then happy to call this a no news event because his ideology has so blinded him to what is right and what is wrong.

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  29. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    vto says:

    further proof that politicians talk bullshit. It is no wonder that they are not trusted (esp. a clown like him). All they ever do is say whatever needs to be said at the time.

    Agreed… but with the proviso that pre-1996 it was I who was writing exactly the same statements and was doing so because I believed, and still believe, them to be true. There’s always a few people in politics at any one time who truly believe what they’re saying and I admire them for that (even if what they’re saying is diametrically opposed to what I personally believe). My mistake was in believing Winston was also one of those people.

    Aardvark makes reference to recoverable proxies. This is precisely the sort of outside-th-box thinking we need to bring to real political reform in NZ. I’d urge everyone to read it. When (and if) the promised opportunity to review MMP comes around, these are the sorts of ideas we need to be discussing.

    Lee C: “the ethical fortitude of a crack-whore”. LOL. That’s a keeper :-)

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  30. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    Rex: that is something that I like the sound of. How would it work with MMP (a question for Aardvark I know, but you may have an answer)?

    In an FPP situation, it seems that the entire electorate’s proxy rests with their elected MP. Presumably if the vote was (say) 60/40 in favour of a given MP, the remaining 40% might choose to immediately recover their proxy and exercise it themselves.

    In an MMP situation, I presume the list votes are the proxies that matter, and they would go to the parties to be exercised (or would they get apportioned to the MPs?) This would be tidier, I would only need to recover my proxy rarely.

    Next question is how it actually works with voting in parliament – presumably everything that was coming up for a vote would need to be published 1-2 days in advance, and a method given to recover my proxy and exercise it in the day or so leading up to a vote. That would definitely be a different mode of operation for parliament – no amendments to bills on the day they were presented.

    This could also be interesting in relation to change of govt. Rather than having elections, we could just have two forms of proxy recovery. Temporary recovery (exercise my proxy on a specific issue), or permanent recovery/redistribution – I no longer like the party I voted for, and want to change. Upon challenge, or maybe on regular intervals (3 monthly?) a government could be obliged to show that they had confidence of a majority of proxies in the country. So we could have gradual elections – a government’s support could leak away week by week until they could no longer govern, and another government could be installed without actually having an election.

    The political geek in me loves the sound of all this. The pragmatist says that it would be a very large change to the way our government runs.

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  31. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    “Never underestimate WP. I’d love him to be out on his ear this election, but past performance suggests that he’ll be pulling another rabbit out of his hat.”

    That’s what they said about Dennis Connors at the four nil mark.

    Winston’s cruising around that area now.

    It’s not that he’s a superman, it’s that he believes he’s a superman.
    We’re just being conned by his self confidence.
    His party faithful are slipping. Gray power have renounced him.
    The only reason he could stay is if we had become a full blown dictatorship.
    Not quite there yet.

    My only concern is Bob Clarkson retiring. I think he could go another three years, no one would begrudge him for that.

    Does any one know who would come agasinst Winston in Tauranga if Bob doesn’t?

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  32. Ross Miller (1,704 comments) says:

    Rex W probably has a better handle on this than I do but I spent 6 years from 1984 helping to tidy up after Winston. He treated his electorate executive with contempt and so alienated people that his membership was reduced to a rump as decent people walked away from his arrogance.

    In point of fact Winston was happy to let his organisation slide because that meant there were less people to challenge him.

    The reality is that Winston was never a team player. It was all about Winston’s way or the highway. And his slavish support for everything Labour and his prostitution of NZF’s soul in ensuring the EFA was passed shows he can never again be trusted.

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  33. freethinker (691 comments) says:

    Recoverable proxies are a cut down version of BCIR and less likely to work because of the frequency of use and voter boredom as a result, they also have the disadvantage of not allowing the voter to propose legislation or remove MPs. BCIR would only be used were there is sufficient support say 50,000 signatures for a referendum which could repeal/write new law and remove unsuitable MPs all at the same time. Just imagine – advisor to PM – the citizens are unhappy with your EFB legislation and appear to have enough signatures for a binding referendum, they are also calling for the removal of all MPs who voted for the legislation. PM to advisor, were did you say the local job centre was?

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  34. vto (1,131 comments) says:

    JOHN DALLEY

    Hello. hello, are you there? Come in please? Question (10.50am) still not answered.

    You know, these bloggy things are interesting. One can post all one likes but credibility can sag depending on ones conduct during a debate. John Dalley’s conduct here in saying something and not following up / substantiating / justifying / etc is such an example. Cred is sagging.

    Will lead to being ignored later I imagine. What do you experienced bloggolites think?

    Goes for me too of course (gulp!)

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  35. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    freethinker: not sure that CIR would work as cleanly as you suggest. And I haven’t seen any mechanism where a CIR could remove an MP, whereas removal of proxy on a permanent basis (transfer to another MP or party) could absolutely result in removal of an MP. I would suggest that we would keep track of two things: proxies for a particular vote, but also proxies for a particular party. Once proxies granted to a party fall below their number of MPs under the MMP formula, they lose an MP, and someone else gains one. The MPs at the bottom of the list come and go depending on how the party’s current popularity is going.

    Like I say, sounds like fun for a political junky. Not sure that it would be great in practice – who would want to be an MP without at least 3 years job security, and wouldn’t it lead to populist policies instead of good policies? (And do I sound like a lefty when I assume the public are too stupid to understand what is good for them?)

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  36. kehua (225 comments) says:

    Winston may have spoken it, but it is John Boscowan who is doing it, classic case of `old bull syndrome` the difference being that unlike Winston, John B will stick to his principles and also pay his own bills.

    Lee C, thanks for the humour.

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  37. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    PaulL: I was hoping Aardvark would come along and answer your questions. I’m not nearly as expert on this particular topic as he’s evidently done far more research into it than I have. I simply favour bringing it, and other options, to the table in an effort to, as Don Chipp put it, keep the bastards honest.

    Recoverable proxy is similar to a system with which I’m more familiar, which is “recall”, whereby if a certain percentage of voters in an electorate say they’re unhappy with their representative, he or she is “recalled” from Parliament / Congress or whatever and, usually, a by-election held. It’s practised in California amongst other places. In California the recall trigger is 20% of voters. As explained in the link:

    The recall ballot has two components: a yes or no vote for recall, and the names of replacement candidates, selected by the nomination process used in regular elections. The recall measure itself is successful if it passes by a majority. In that case, the replacement candidate with a simple plurality of votes wins the office. If the recall measure fails, the replacement candidate votes are ignored.

    How this (or recoverable proxies) would work under MMP is a good question. Implementing it would be problematic and the solutions you suggest – of having the parties or their MPs the proxy-holders – aren’t in the spirit of either system, where the aim is to allow voters to say “enough is enough”.

    Another reason why MMP is not the best system if you want a participatory democracy. Recall (or recoverable proxies) work effectively in any system where each representative is directly accountable to a defined group of people, so would work under FPP, STV, PV etc.

    In fact, using this and other methods we could have fixed all the things that bother us abbout the way politics is done in NZ and still had FPP elections!

    The political geek in me loves the sound of all this. The pragmatist says that it would be a very large change to the way our government runs.

    The political geek in me loves all this too. The pragmatist in me says that unless we act to introduce real democracy into NZ now, before any more legislation favouring the politicians at the expense of the people is passed, it will be too late.

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  38. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    Rex, I don’t see why making the parties the proxy holders is not in the spirit. It seems to me that it allows the proxy givers (the voters) to take their votes back off that party when they are no longer happy with what they are doing. The party thereby shrinks, giving up MPs as necessary. If the proxies are given to another party instead, that party grows. If they are retained by the voter (vote of no confidence?) then parliament simply shrinks.

    From reading some of your comments on this and similar topics, I understand that you find lists to not be good – you would prefer MPs to stand in constituencies. I understand the theory – which is that the MP is directly answerable to that constituency. But in practice, for example under FPP, if you wanted a particular party you had to vote for their candidate. Arguably it is possible under a multi-member constituency for a party to stand multiple candidates, and for the voters to pick the MP that they like the most as well as the party they want.

    Bottom line, so long as there are parties the party will have some say over who their MPs are. If you don’t like the people that a party puts on their list, or as their electorate candidates, then you shouldn’t vote for that party. Seems simple to me really. If you wanted to influence this you would presumably need to join the party.

    Are there particular MPs in current parties that you think don’t belong there? If so, why do you think that parties select those MPs – are they so stupid that they don’t understand that they are reducing their vote by doing so?

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  39. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    kehua you is welcome. I like to quote myself – it adds polish to my conversation! And I’m still only in short trousers!

    you know what Rex? if we can make lemonade out of lemons, it is that the recent activities of our political servants has been a massive WAKE UP! call.

    Perhaps we need a Royal Commission on Electoral reform to start the ball rolling. And part of that electoral reform should include a review period enshrined by Law, of no more than nine years, or the equivalent of three parliaments. Is there any party out there with the minerals to undertake such a thing?

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  40. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    freethinker. y u ex st. Th s is t e pro f.

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  41. Lee C (4,516 comments) says:

    Aardvark: recoverable proxy – what a superb idea. I have linked it on http://monkeyswithtypewriter.blogspot.com/ if thats ok?

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