72 of 88 go for titles

August 1st, 2009 at 7:03 am by David Farrar

The Government has announced 72 of 88 recipients of top have chosen to go with the titular version. So some of the more well known new knights and dames are:

  • Sir Lloyd Geering
  • Sir Ralph Ngatata Love
  • Sir Russell Coutts
  • Sir Ed Durie
  • Sir Eion Edgar
  • Sir Wira Gardiner
  • Sir Douglas Kidd
  • Sir Colin Meads
  • Sir Ralph Norris
  • Sir Peter Snell
  • Sir Archie Taiaroa
  • Sir Tumu te Heuheu
  • Sir Stephen Tindall
  • Dame Lynley Dodd
  • Dame Lois Muir
  • Dame Claudia Orange
  • Dame Jennifer Shipley
  • Dame Sukhi Turner
  • Dame Margaret Clark

As I have blogged previously I am a fan of titles for our top honours. It makes them meaningful, and is in the same traditions as academia where top scholars are titled Doctor if they get a PhD and top acadamics are titled Professor if they are appointed to a Chair.

One additional change I would have liked (as does Dean Knight who has blogged extensively on this) the Government to have done, is to allow the recipients to choose to have their title in English or (both being official languages. The versions are Tā and Kahurangi and allowing those as options would make the system uniquely New Zealand combining both our British and heritage.

I stress I do not advocate replacing the English titles with the Maori ones. It is about allowing the recipient to choose their preferred title. I see that as a win-win and am surprised the Government did not go down that track. I know the Maori Party were (not surprisingly) supportive as Dean and I talked to them about the idea.

Such an option would have probably seen quite a few of the 14 who did not move to the titular honour, do so.

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38 Responses to “72 of 88 go for titles”

  1. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,760 comments) says:

    The other sixteen are obviously socialists and traitors. Strip them of their honours immediately.

    For the Queen!!

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  2. Inventory2 (9,380 comments) says:

    It’ll be great to have Sir Peter Snell back in Wanganui later in the month to unveil his statue at Cooks Gardens.

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  3. alex Masterley (1,535 comments) says:

    Ones Sam Neill. Quelle surprise.

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  4. Mr Nobody NZ (365 comments) says:

    DPF , I would disagree that recipients should have to choose between their title being in English or Maori, surely the title is the same and its just the language that changes. So if Sir Meads was at a Maori orientated function he should be called Tā Meads or if he was at a Japanese function it might be Natio Meads (well at least according to the online Japanese dictionary I consulted :)).

    Generally in NZ however as both English and Maori are official languages I would expect event organiser/journalists etc to ask the person which language they would perfer their title to be pronounced/written in.

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  5. Seán (373 comments) says:

    DPF, I don’t really understand your rationale for the Sir/Dame titles. You said “I am a fan of titles for our top honours. It makes them meaningful, and is in the same traditions as academia where top scholars “

    The new honours are indeed young, obviously. Therefore they don’t have time on their side to make them as ‘meaningful’ or with ‘tradition’. But are we not proud enough to have our own honours system for our own poeple. In time they will develop these attributes, but patience is needed. How can we move forward if we keep running back to a foreign crown and their ways? I can’t see how to make headway when we’re backpeddling.

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  6. hj (7,165 comments) says:

    Ranganui Walker is rejecting his as we are an eglitarian nation where “Jack is as good as his master” and that sort of thing is going back into the past. Pot calling kettle black.

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  7. Rakaia George (313 comments) says:

    But are we not proud enough to have our own honours system for our own poeple.

    If you hadn’t actually noticed, we do, nobody on that list was honoured because of a decision by the Queen or Tony B.Liar they were honoured because of decisions taken by our own elected governments. What has (rightly) changed is this nonsense about “equality” somehow meaning that you’re not allowed to be honoured with a title when you achieve greatness (ok, lets ignore the political time-served ones for now).

    Jack is indeed as good as his master, that’s why we honour a bloke off a farm, who was good at chasing an inflated pigs bladder, just the same as a former PM.

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  8. Murray (8,803 comments) says:

    Something of a slap in the face for the republican “movement” if you want to use that word to describe three men in a phone box.

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  9. Camryn (481 comments) says:

    I don’t care what the name or the orders are, but I do care that if you belong to the top ones then some title should come before your name. It just makes it easier to follow.

    Camryn NZOM = ??
    Camryn OMG WTF = ??
    Sir Camryn = Must’ve done something good.

    Oh… and to those who call the Queen a “foreign crown” – you are wrong. She is the Queen of the Kingdom of New Zealand. She also happens to be the Queen of England etc due to the historical happenstance that New Zealand is a former colony of the UK. The crowns are held by the same person but are entirely separate.

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  10. Seán (373 comments) says:

    To Rakaia George: Yes I realise that those selected are not decided by those residing in the UK (and of course that would make it much worse). But that wasn’t really my point, was it?

    On your mention of “equality” well to be honest I am not familiar with the ideology surrounding that. I guess I don’t have a problem with a title per se, but I would like to see something uniquely NZ. Whatever the technical aspects, I still see the Sir/Dame system a copy, or entension, of the British tradition.

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  11. Seán (373 comments) says:

    Re “foreign crown”. Thank you Camryn for illustrating what we already know. However I remain unconvinced by your ‘argument’ that is limited to pointing out the technical description of the Queen.

    At risk of also stating the glaringly obvious you might well be reminded that the Queen is not a NZer, and furthermore, she does not reside in NZ. That is why her position is often referred to as a “foreign crown” (i.e. she is a foreigner). Hope you understand a little better now.

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  12. trout (954 comments) says:

    It has become fasionable in some circes to denigrate English culture and the traditions that go with it. No matter that in everyday life we generally live a English/European lifestyle and no one (except a few hippies and Tuhoe) wants to give it up. Titles are an apt way of recognizing community service; most cultures do this in some way; we have chosen, as in many things, to follow the English tradition. (and NZ was never a ‘colony’ of the UK; it is or was a self governing ‘dominion’).
    The ratio of acceptors of titles to the others seems to me to fairly reflect the real support for the social engineering and rejection of cultural values that has been forced upon us in the last 9 years.

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  13. Dean Papa (784 comments) says:

    The notion that the return to titular honours is somehow an upgrade to the previous version of the honours system is just another symptom of the New Zealand inferiority complex. I would support a Maori only version of titles as that would indeed make the honours uniquely New Zealand, rather than being a second class version of the Pommy system.

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  14. Seán (373 comments) says:

    trout – firstly I am not denigrating English culture here, even if it is apparently fashionable! My point being that they can have their culture – good or bad – but should we not develop our own? Well we already have our own, but lets stop being pathetic plagiarists. There are many institutions instilled in NZ that came from Britain -sure – and I am not advocating changing them all just fr the sake of change. But on this topic we are honouring NZers and their achievements, and I think it would be worthwhile building a system of our own. And as I mentioned earlier I recognise that a new system doesn’t carry the weight of the more traditional titles, but then good things take time.

    I would actually say we live a more American lifestyle, than an English one. But nevertheless, having a predominantly western lifestyle is still no reason to pander to former colonial masters.

    I don’t want to get into a silly Labour vs National, “last 9 years”, argument because I see that as completely irrelevant here.

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  15. jcuknz (689 comments) says:

    Having Maori prefixes is a ‘nice’ idea but pretty pointless when you go overseas and nobody knows what it means … ‘ta’ means ‘thankyou’ to me and millions of english speakers. It until I read this, Ta was meaningless to me and I expect is to around at least 90% of the NZ population. It may be a ‘foreign’ and ‘colonial’ custom, though a goodly proportion of us owe our roots from over there, but I least we know what Sir and Lady means. I’m sure that is why so many choose those prefixes to be honoured by.

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  16. Kris K (3,570 comments) says:

    Seán 10:21 am,
    “On your mention of “equality” well to be honest I am not familiar with the ideology surrounding that. I guess I don’t have a problem with a title per se, but I would like to see something uniquely NZ. Whatever the technical aspects, I still see the Sir/Dame system a copy, or entension, of the British tradition.”

    If we take your argument to its logical conclusion then we should ALSO get rid of Mr. and Mrs. because they are a “copy, or entension, of the British tradition.”

    Why do some people feel we have to deny our own history?
    Next it won’t be acceptable to speak ‘English’ for the same reasons.
    … or drive on the left hand side of the road.
    … or call a university a university.
    … or a degree a degree

    Indeed, anything ‘inherited’ from ‘offshore’ would be up for grabs.
    Maybe, on the same basis, we should design and implement our own system of mathematics?

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  17. tvb (4,554 comments) says:

    What happened to Jim Bolger’s title. As a former PM he would be entitled to a Senior honour. Margaret Wilson got hers as a former Speaker (and little else) and yet she did not have the good grace to accept the title. But just as well, as she was a very poor Speaker who streaked “Order” the whole time.

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  18. oxymoron (32 comments) says:

    Jim Bolger is a member of the Order of NZ, limited to 20 ordinary living members at any one time. The ONZ has never had a title attached to it.

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  19. Gumby (22 comments) says:

    I am glad we have returned to the old titles as the news one seemed a bit sterile and arbitrary. No doubt they would acquire more prestige over time but why cut symbolic times with our heritage. It wasn’t really holding us back as a country you know. More of a proud reminder of our past.

    We are perhaps the closest country in culture to England outside the UK. Our Aussie brothers are the American wannabies and we are more civilised than that. Another great decision Mr Key!

    Now if we could only get the Privy Council back.

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  20. bchapman (649 comments) says:

    Who cares! In Australia, Sir Joh Bjelke Peterson was the last premier to do away with the system and he awarded it to all his mates. A lot of them ended up in jail so having the title Sir then took on a decidly dodgy tone. There is no way Australia will go back to knighthoods now. All a big Monty Pythonesque.

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  21. paradigm (452 comments) says:

    John Smith, xyz was never that impressive.

    Sir John Smith commands far more respect.

    Isn’t that the point of having honours?

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  22. Put it away (2,872 comments) says:

    Sean I take it you will stop spelling your name with that foreign accent mark, you’re not in the old country now, you ought to spell it the New Zealand way as part of us developing our own traditions. In time you will come to like it, patience is needed.

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  23. trout (954 comments) says:

    The urge to abandon English culture and traditions for something New World is like a teenager rebelling against the older generation. They want to do it, don’t know why, and don’t really know what for. eNGLISH CULTURAL NORMS ARE ALL PERVASIVE IN WHITE eNGLISH SPEAKING SOCIETIES

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  24. trout (954 comments) says:

    I stand corrected on ‘colony’ v ‘dominion’ – I did not go back far enough.
    The urge to abandon English culture and traditions for something New World is like a teenager rebelling against the older generation. They want to do it, don’t know why, and don’t really know what for. Think about it; English cultural norms are pervasive in all white dominated English speaking societies, including the USA. Sure there are minor variations but generally the way people live, eat, recreate, and communicate; and their political systems, have roots in English culture. The exporting of the English way of life via imperialism was extraordinarily successful; I remember visiting friends in a cottage in the middle of Africa; everything was English style (including the garden); the only concesion to local coloour were a couple of spears over the fireplace. We adapt English traditions where they fit and match our own values. There is a lot of talk about a ‘unique NZ culture’, unless referring to indigenous culture it does not exist except as an regional version of English culture. Think shops or beaurocracy.

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  25. Dean Papa (784 comments) says:

    “Having Maori prefixes is a ‘nice’ idea but pretty pointless when you go overseas and nobody knows what it means”

    Why should that matter? They’re supposed to be New Zealand honours, bestowed by the New Zealand government. Such reasoning is yet another sign of the Kiwi inferiority complex, I’m afraid to say.

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  26. paradigm (452 comments) says:

    Some idiot on tv1 news was complaining about the sir and dame titles causing “discrimination”. Seems not to realise that the whole point of any honour is to discriminate between the masses and the people who have achieved something “special”. If he doesn’t like that, he should be trying to get all honours abolished, rather than just changing the names to something obscure.

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  27. Owen McShane (1,182 comments) says:

    We should not be surprised that a gay man does not want to be called Sir.
    Now, if he could have opted for Dame …. ????

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  28. Seán (373 comments) says:

    Kris K, Put it away – now you’re just being silly. Many of our institutions and ways come from overseas. We should not deny our past. But my point is that NZ honours are for NZers and are now. This is an aspect we should keep uniquely NZ. To move forward we should be looking at doing things ourselves now.

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  29. Stuart Mackey (336 comments) says:

    # Seán (213) Vote: Add rating 0 Subtract rating 0 Says:
    August 1st, 2009 at 10:21 pm

    . Many of our institutions and ways come from overseas. We should not deny our past. But my point is that NZ honours are for NZers and are now. This is an aspect we should keep uniquely NZ. To move forward we should be looking at doing things ourselves now.
    ***************************************

    Actually you are trying to deny our past, by removing it from public sight, by legislative fiat, imposed by a subjective minority to satisfy their purposes, and without so much as a by your leave to the public.

    You are correct that a nations culture and traditions evolve over time, but you do not get there by having minority governments trying to change it by legislation when they do not represent a clear and permanent public majority on that issue, it must be left to evolve by itself or you simply get it revoked by the next government.

    I would suggest to you that at this time, titles, such as we have, are part of our culture by virtue of history, practice and, above all, the consent of the public. If left to its own devices it will either stay if its wanted, or fall into disuse over time without any legislative requirement at all.

    Its this sort of thing which makes this cultural separatism thing we have going on bemusing; in one thousand years there will not be Maori, English, Indian, Scots, Dutch etc, there will only be New Zealanders with a New Zealand culture forged out of many, its inevitable, just look at England, why fight it?

    Cultural change does not happen via legislation, it happens via human interaction.

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  30. Seán (373 comments) says:

    Stuart Mackey – indeed you have raised good points (except for your first sentence because even on this issue, I see it not as denying the past, but that we should make some progress, given the local nature of it all). I do agree with your final sentence.

    Of course, if the majority chose to retain the British tradition of titles, or even to retain the Monarch of England as our own HoS, then I have to accept it. But by accepting it, doesn’t mean I agree with it.

    For the record I have never voted Labour, nor supported them, which is why earlier I said earlier that I didn’t want this to turn into a Lab vs Nat or left vs right debate. I see this matter in particular about being a patriotic Kiwi. I genuinely want us to make our own way forward. We can recognise our past, our heritage (Maori, British, whatever), but we should not hang onto it to the detriment of self-determination. This is not an anti-British view but rather a pro-NZ view. It’s about moving on.

    I was born in NZ, and while I recognise our history, at the same time I want to feel like a NZer, not some resident of a colonial outpost (as our silly flag portrays). Our honours system is decided upon by NZers for NZers. Lets not attach it to something non-NZ so that it becomes somewhat watered down.

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  31. Put it away (2,872 comments) says:

    Sean, but surely the way you spell your name is “now and for New Zealanders” too ? You should take the lead and start spelling it the New Zealand way, without that accent mark from the other side of the world. Or is tradition suddenly important when it’s your own ?

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  32. Seán (373 comments) says:

    Put it away – you are truly a fool of the highest order. Perhaps you could provide some sort of evidence which indicates how my name is spelt in NZ? Oh, no you can’t? What a surprise. If you had actually been paying attention you would have noticed that I already said that we (NZers) should not deny our past, nor our heritage. My focus is on the ‘here and now’. You would do well to stick to the issue, or alternatively you could get a brain. Either suits me.

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  33. big bruv (14,217 comments) says:

    How can a republican be a fan of knighthoods?

    Republicans want to cut ties with the UK, republicans want to do away with the Queens birthday Holiday and republicans think that the idea of President Clark is not such a bad thing.

    Republicans cannot have it both ways, that fact that the vast majority of those awarded the irrelevant NZ gong have chosen to take the knighthood shows that the republican movement has a long long way to go before they can convince Kiwi’s that we need to become a republic.

    And as for Sam Neil and the other pinkos…..who give a toss?

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  34. big bruv (14,217 comments) says:

    Sean

    “I see this matter in particular about being a patriotic Kiwi. I genuinely want us to make our own way forward. We can recognise our past, our heritage (Maori, British, whatever), but we should not hang onto it to the detriment of self-determination. This is not an anti-British view but rather a pro-NZ view. It’s about moving on.”

    How dare you!

    Would you tell Maori to “move on”?, I seriously doubt it, from your other posts it seems you have a rampant case of guilty white syndrome coupled with a unhealthy PC condition.

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  35. clintheine (1,495 comments) says:

    Sukhi Turner!!!!!!? Her presence on this list immediately lowers the tone. WTF is she doing on this list?

    What a hypocrite for accepting it. She always ranted about this sort of stuff when she was ruining Dunedin and being an Alliance retard.

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  36. Kris K (3,570 comments) says:

    Gumby [August 1st, 2009 at 3:08 pm],
    “Now if we could only get the Privy Council back.”

    Amen to that.

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