Self-rule for Tuhoe?

August 9th, 2008 at 9:37 am by David Farrar

The Herald reports on an aspect of the terms of negotiation between the Crown and , which is to provide clarity regarding their constitutional relationship.

Calls from Maori activist Tame Iti for self-government arrangements for the Tuhoe tribe similar to those Wales, and Northern Ireland have in the UK have been backed by a leader likely to negotiate the tribe’s Treaty settlement. …

“It’s one of the things which has been consistent since the 1870s: Tuhoe’s regard for their nationhood and their independence.”

However, before formal negotiations proper began the iwi had to decide what specific arrangements of self-government it would like to see, Mr Kruger said.

He said nations had existed within nation-states for hundreds of years and while other iwi – for example, Te Atiawa or Ngati Toa in Wellington – might struggle to make a compelling argument for self-government because of the large number of non-Maori in their areas, Tuhoe’s geographical isolation changed things.

The United Kingdom is certainly an example of having countries within a country.  But I am unsure one can draw the analogy too far. As noted in the article, the presence of non-Maori in an area is a huge issue.

You see self rule in Scotland and Wales etc is not based on bloodlines, or ethnicity, or nationality – but simply location. An englishman living in Edinburgh has just as many rights to vote in Scottish elections, as a native Scots.

There are around 30,000 Tuhoe, and currently it seems only around 6,000 live in their traditional lands. I am unsure how many non-Tuhoe live there, but I could not imagine a situation where non-Tuhoe living there would be allowed to become second class citizens with lesser rights of representation.

It is also worth noting other differences between Scotland and Tuhoe:

  1. Length of self-rule – Scotland existed as a country for around 1200 years before 1707. it is unknown how long Tuhoe was a distinct tribe in NZ, but far far less
  2. Population – Scotland has 5 million residents and only around 6,000 Tuhoe live in their traditional lands
  3. Legal System – Scotland, despite being part of the UK, continued to have its own legal system

I’m not oppossed to of powers in cases that are appropriate. But in the UK the has been to all citizens in an area, not just those of a particular ethnicity.

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39 Responses to “Self-rule for Tuhoe?”

  1. Lipper (2,207 comments) says:

    It really hasn’t worked for the Scots either!

    And it will get increasingly difficult to substantiate as being for the greater good.

    The Scots are definitely not thrilled about any other type of background individual coming into their Country.

    They do however accept change, as they are very well educated and more open minded.

    Unlike the North Whaleians, who are really unpleasant to foreigners!

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  2. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    Firstly how can Tuhoe sign a treaty settlement when they never signed the treaty?

    Also they want all this self rule with no responsibility. If I was a Whakatane District ratepayer I would be backing this. Imagine the savings on not having to maintain the roads in that area.

    The only real way to achieve this is a large secure fence to lock them in unless they have visas to get out.

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  3. big bruv (14,162 comments) says:

    I think this idea has merit, it would save NZ a fortune.

    Lets give Tuhoe self rule, self government and all the responsibility that goes with it.

    Tuhoe can collect their own taxes, police their own people and defend their own land.

    Tuhoe would of course not receive any NZ government assistance, no social welfare, and they would be charged at a commercial rate for all those who access the NZ health system (and only if space was available)

    They would be charged commercial rates for power and commercial rates for services provided by the Government of NZ, given the new nature of any such “Nation of Tuhoe” I would suggest that any work undertaken on a commercial basis by the NZ government should be on a strictly cash up front arrangement.

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  4. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    If they were smart they could set up NZ’s first tax haven.

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  5. ghostwhowalks2 (118 comments) says:

    Perhaps they would set up a casino in Ruatoki.

    The US model of self governace is a better idea than the British one, where the indian tribes can have something between a county and state government but answerable ( and recieve money) from the federal government.

    But US counties allready have their own police forces,hospitals , schools, courts and so on which are largely self funded.

    As I understand it the very small tribes who have ancestral lands amoung the eastern and western states and have built casinos have a geneology based list of who is eligible for the profits of the casinos

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  6. Lipper (2,207 comments) says:

    “Perhaps they would set up a casino in Ruatoki.

    The US model of self governace is a better idea than the British one, where the indian tribes can have something between a county and state government but answerable ( and recieve money) from the federal government.

    But US counties allready have their own police forces,hospitals , schools, courts and so on which are largely self funded.

    As I understand it the very small tribes who have ancestral lands amoung the eastern and western states and have built casinos have a geneology based list of who is eligible for the profits of the casinos, ”

    Perhaps GWW2, you could explain how any American system is better than the Colonial Version from GB. Especially when they tried through listening, and having an understanding of their former territories, that they tailored each an every independence.

    Once again you talk without true education.

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  7. ghostwhowalks2 (118 comments) says:

    You are a pompous puff ball Lipper.

    As I pointed out the US allready has states and counties with their own taxing and spending powers ( including income tax) and laws.
    This doesnt exist in NZ. And I dont think we will create it for Tuhoe.
    The best they could hope for ( and actually run successfully) would be something akin to the urban maori authorities.

    ITs a good experience for them in that negioating with the crown they are starting to act collectively but its a long way to running their own affairs.
    I see Nga Tahu use a corporate model which doesnt have any territorial component, but this may not be the best idea.

    Dont forget NZ does have a second system of justice , along with it police,courts and prisons, in the Military.

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  8. Murray (8,847 comments) says:

    I’m all for it.

    Self rule and self sufficiency.

    Turn off the taps, the elctricity and the social wealfare. Here’s a sharpened stick and good luck.

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  9. Lipper (2,207 comments) says:

    Actually, you have zero ability to convince anybody of anything. GWW2

    You are comparing radically different systems of Governance.

    Bound to be pompous, when faced with a retard who is so obviously short of the mark.

    Don’t suppose you have chance to get out much. You Puff!

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

    Bullshit – just a ploy to bring the rednecks out, and scare the liberals into voting for the left.

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  11. goodgod (1,348 comments) says:

    Looks like the outgoing government’s having none of it.

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  12. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    When can I get my blankets back?

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  13. Fletch (6,497 comments) says:

    This kind of puts the war games at Urewera in a sinister new light doesn’t it? Especially if you’re going to talk about Northern Ireland in the same sentence.

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  14. Lipper (2,207 comments) says:

    GWW2

    After the Election, you might be able to get a job as a Croupier in any proposed Tuhoe Casino.

    They might be convinced about your superficial ability in the game of ‘Craps’.

    Waikerimoana is very beautiful!

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  15. Lipper (2,207 comments) says:

    Fletch,

    “This kind of puts the war games at Urewera in a sinister new light doesn’t it? Especially if you’re going to talk about Northern Ireland in the same sentence.”

    Where the hell did NI come into this one?

    Now a very magic place to visit. Try any part of the Antrim Coast, and you will be captivated.

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  16. Bob (497 comments) says:

    I think most commentators have the wrong idea of what self rule would mean. It would not mean an end to financing roads, benefits etc. Tuhoe would expect the government to advance a bulk fund which they would decide how to use. Any suggestion of cutting themselves off from central government financing would quickly kill the idea.

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  17. Murray (8,847 comments) says:

    Thens its not self rule its a benefit scam Bob.

    I think the country passed its freeloader threshold about 27 stops back.

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  18. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    Don’t the tribes already get bulk funding in the form of the treaty settlements?

    Most have proved very ill prepared in self managing large amounts of cash.

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  19. Chicken Little (741 comments) says:

    Waikerimoana is very beautiful!

    Yup, Waikaremoana is awesome. The bush around that area and a bit further north is some of the most beautiful and ‘magical’ I’ve ever seen. Bit freaky though sometimes when you’re on your own.

    I’ve lived in some fairly remote places in that area and on the BOP side and there’s defiantly two camps about the issue.

    I reckon it comes down to posturing as a negotiating tool, no matter what the ‘boys’ think.

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

    There is the old saying ” careful what you wish for”, one wonders if all of Tuhoe thinks this idea is a goer. I doubt the “consultation” has filtered down to the lower ranked tribe members. To me it reeks of the brown aristocracy and governance by the annointed. I doubt many in Tuhoe would relish the idea of leaders like Tame iti calling the shots. How much true support would this issue have when it was realised that many would have to live under tribe law both good and bad and to step back in time 300 years in the way of civil rights.

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  21. virtualmark (1,540 comments) says:

    Ah Bob, maybe it’s Tuhoe who have the wrong idea of what self rule would mean. If they want to be independent then that means standing on their own two feet and paying their own way. If they want to keep sucking on the tit of the welfare state then they have to accept the compromises that come with that.

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  22. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    Yeah, side show bob. I suggest that if Tuhoe actually gets to try this, most of the people will end up either migrating out, or opting back into union with NZ.

    The radical Tuhoe leaders should show everyone the “constitution” they have in mind for the territory, and the people of the territory should be careful about what they might be in for. Sir Apirana Ngata’s book on The Treaty of Waitangi is essential reading. Maori were the only indigenous people in the world who actually negotiated and signed their way into the status of citizens of the Queen, with property rights, human rights and the rule of law. Maori leaders of the day were intelligent enough to see the advantages versus their own culture, and THAT is something to celebrate, not condemn.

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  23. The Drefetr (7 comments) says:

    I wasn’t aware that one group was able to simply opt out of our governmental system.

    If this is the case, then how and where do I do so?

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  24. PaulL (6,048 comments) says:

    Exactly The Dreftr. I think we should give them self rule, it opens up the potential for other groups in NZ to get self rule. How about Christchurch goes for self rule – lower taxes, lower benefits, private health care. It’d be interesting if we could have competing systems of govt within NZ and see which ones work best.

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  25. davidp (3,588 comments) says:

    This is a similar idea to indigenous lands in Australia which are managed by tribes. They’re almost entirely brutal crime ridden shit holes where child abuse is considered to be the norm, alcoholism rates come close to 100 percent, and there are no jobs. And the only thing that keeps them from being even worse is the enormous amounts of money the state and federal governments pump in to them.

    Why you’d want to copy such a model in NZ is a mystery. Rule by tribal elders is just feudal… I thought we’d left that all behind around about the time of the industrial revolution?

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  26. The Drefetr (7 comments) says:

    Personally as a descendant of people (Scottish/Irish) who were at one time (2000+ years ago) free from colonization and imperialism I am curious as to whether or not I have grounds for self-governance?

    It’s not like I was ever asked if I wanted to join this cruel legal and parliamentary system. It’s people like me who are the real victims, thousands of years of unwanted colonial rule. Fact is, I don’t get to remove myself from the system just because my ancestors were hard done by; and neither should they.

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  27. Owen McShane (1,226 comments) says:

    Just remember the principle:
    “No representation without taxation.”

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  28. paradigm (452 comments) says:

    Maori “tribal elite” (now there’s an oxymoron) have perpetuated a fiction that the poorer Maori standard of living are the work of the “white-ey” government. After all, how else could one explain why a people who choose to live far away from centres of employment, who have a culture that lends well to forming criminal gangs, and who tend to leave school early should be overrepresented in crime and underrepresented in employment? Of the minority who stay in school till form 7, many elect to take Maori as a subject. Now while the P.C. will argue Maori is a perfectly functional language for communication, its lack of international practitioners limit its usefulness. Moreover those who choose to study it forgo the study of a more useful subject and thus end up with a less useful qualification. The net result is obvious: As Maori will be more poorly qualified on average, and choose to live in areas with few job opportunities, they will suffer poor employment and hardship.

    The notion that a situation is one’s own fault is often difficult to swallow, and cultures around the world have come up with an easy way of avoiding difficult problems: Blame it on gremlins, plague carrying cats, witches, tanewha, a lack of adherence to “Te Tiriti O Waitangi”. This of course can create a far more serious dilemma: Having falsely identified the problem, one will most likely come up with the wrong solution to rectify it. Adopting Maori sovereignty to improve Maori standards of living is like killing cats to stop the black death. Maori would have to pay for their own justice system, utilities, government, education, but would lack the productive base needed to do so. The result would be further degradation of the Maori standard of living.

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  29. riki (224 comments) says:

    “I doubt many in Tuhoe would relish the idea of leaders like Tame iti calling the shots.”

    Coronation looming for King Tame?

    That will shoot his court appearance to pieces.

    Fortuantely a ploy the duck couldn’t resort to!

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  30. serge (108 comments) says:

    Self rule? Marvellous, this should be given to all Maoris as well. Of course, they would have to establish their own hospitals, welfare, infrastructure such as electricity, telefones and in general all the benefits of being part of NZ society. The good news for us also is that then we will only need a maximum tax rate of say 15%-20% maximum to run NZ, so let them have their independence and let us have ours!! Ah, I forgot, they can also have Helen Clark and her gang of renown for nothing! Love yous guys…bye…

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  31. thehawkreturns (162 comments) says:

    This is all about racism. Just like the maori party.

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  32. PhilBest (5,125 comments) says:

    # The Drefetr (7) Add karma Subtract karma +0 Says:
    August 9th, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    “I wasn’t aware that one group was able to simply opt out of our governmental system.

    If this is the case, then how and where do I do so?”

    # PaulL (1898) Add karma Subtract karma +0 Says:
    August 9th, 2008 at 1:52 pm

    “Exactly The Dreftr. I think we should give them self rule, it opens up the potential for other groups in NZ to get self rule. How about Christchurch goes for self rule – lower taxes, lower benefits, private health care. It’d be interesting if we could have competing systems of govt within NZ and see which ones work best.”

    Yep, agree, PaulL, I’ve suggested this more than once before. Perhaps the whole South Island, or perhaps Southland (President Shadbolt?)

    Or perhaps the South could opt for union with Aussie?

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  33. Southern Raider (1,831 comments) says:

    PhilBest you bet me two it. Imagine the GDP/capita of Southland.

    – 60 to 70,000 people
    – $billions of export dollars from Tiwai Point, Edendale milk/cheese factory, Matuara fibre board plant, at least two freezing works and fishing
    – major tourist attraction (Milford Sound)
    – huge hydro power station

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  34. JSF2008 (422 comments) says:

    wheres the good feel in these posts , give tuhoe millions , and more millions, then more millions, cullen and clark/davis can then sleep soundly at night AFTER ALL ITS OUR MONEY (SUCKERS) .

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  35. Steve (4,591 comments) says:

    This is more Maori bullshit.
    Sounds like the Harry Wakatipu story.
    “It’s a miracle that anyone put up with Harry Wakatipu for a month, let alone years. Why I spoiled and pampered him so much I’ll never know!”
    Harry was lazy and useless.
    The Deer Culler.

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  36. reid (16,634 comments) says:

    Today in NZ, it’s impossible to logistically work through a separate system in that if Tuhoe want to setup borders and have their own set of laws that apply only when you’re in their territory, that’s impossible.

    However I suspect they will ask only for more say in how their share of taxpayer funding is spent. They will obviously ask for everything all the other tribes have in terms of autonomy over their own land parcels etc. But what more will they ask for? I suspect they will ask for separate education to University level, separate healthcare clinics and separate ways to deal with minor infractions committed inside tribal boundaries.

    I think Tuhoe have a point since they never signed the treaty, and I just want to wait and see what it is they specifically propose. Iti and co are no fools. We may be pleasantly surprised.

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  37. paradigm (452 comments) says:

    Of course there is an even more sinister aspect to Maori sovereignty here. It is obvious Maori sovereignty while maintaining current asset ownership would reduce the Maori standard of living: Maori are poorly employed and do not have that many wealth generating assets. However there are some in this country who believe that we should adopt a Zimbabwe style forceful transfer of land and other assets to the native people. On that note it is interesting may I point out the only party who did not condemn Mugabe for his land confiscation policy was the Maori Party, who blame the shock from “just been sort of released from colonisation”.

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  38. expat (4,050 comments) says:

    Iti and his ilk need to get into the 21C, its not 1872 anymore.

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  39. RRM (10,034 comments) says:

    Let them have it. New Zealand could build a large electric fence on the border. Services such as electricity, healthcare, telecoms connections etc could be supplied over the border on a cash basis.

    The exercise might be instructive to others who sometimes belittle the benefits of western-style civilisation that the British brought…

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