Labour at Ratana

January 25th, 2010 at 11:06 am by David Farrar

The Herald reports:

received a battering at township yesterday as National and the Maori Party continue to bask in popularity after more than a year in office together.

Labour was challenged to reciprocate the loyalty shown to it from Ratana for decades by accepting four Ratana candidates for winnable positions in Parliament – on the list.

To rub his nose in it, Labour leader Phil Goff had to endure a speech praising Prime Minister John Key for being “a brilliant speaker” and “a person who should be admired”.

Heh. Now one has to understand the significance of this. Ratana is not just a meeting of Maori. It is not like Waitangi. Ratana has been an ally for Labour for many many decades. As a Labour leader, having Ratana praise National is somewhat akin to a Green Leader having to listen to Greenpeace praise National.

And Maori Party co-leader Pita Sharples was welcomed in the morning, with him telling Ratana that the Maori Party was their party – it holds five of the seven Maori electorateseats.

The recent Marae Digipoll showed the Maori Party massively ahead of Labour amongst Maori voters on the Maori roll. It also showed National ahead of Labour amongst Maori voters on the general roll.

Mr Goff rejected the suggestion of greater Ratana representation in the Labour caucus, other than on merit.

I have a two word response to that – Ashraf Choudary!

Ratana minister Kereama Pene, who delivered the critical speech, was told by Labour MP Shane Jones he should stick to ministering.

How to win friends and influence people.

In The Press report I note Goff is using their new slogan – the :

“Sure, you need to update it to be a 21st-century relationship, but it shows the coincidence between Ratana and Labour working for the ordinary person.”

We should start a competition to count up how often the phrase “ordinary person” appears in Labour press releases, blog postings and speeches.

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31 Responses to “Labour at Ratana”

  1. JC (838 comments) says:

    Whatever happened to the “decent hard working Kiwis”?

    Or are they now lost to National.

    JC

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  2. MikeNZ (3,234 comments) says:

    Labour have never been Ratana nor Maoridom’s best friend.
    Sadness is they seem too stupid to see that, even looking back at history.

    all their big gains have come from National.

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  3. Guy Fawkes (702 comments) says:

    “hard working families” borrowed from NuLabour been dropped already?

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  4. Tim Ellis (253 comments) says:

    To be fair, Mr Farrar, there are a lot more two word responses to Mr Goff’s claim that Labour selects its list on merit.

    How about “Chris Carter”. Or “Rick Barker”. Or “Lynne Pillay”. Or “Raymond Huo”.

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  5. homepaddock (429 comments) says:

    How does “the ordinary person” differ from Don Brash’s “mainstream” New Zealander?

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  6. Countess (157 comments) says:

    Google lists 123 hits on ‘ordinary’ on national.org.nz

    eg ” He thinks it is developers and businesses that pay. He’s wrong. It’s ordinary New Zealanders who are paying the price. -Nick Smith

    That’s why National will applaud aspiration, that’s why we’ll back ordinary Kiwis, John Key.

    HOIST. PETARD

    [DPF: You mean Labour are not even being original. They really are bereft of ideas then]

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  7. Pete George (21,789 comments) says:

    “Sure, you need to update it to be a 21st-century relationship, but it shows the coincidence between Ratana and Labour working for the ordinary person.”

    That is reflected in the polls, they need to work for more than one person.

    Fair enough on that Countess. Using general labels that mean nothing, well, mean nothing.

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  8. dime (8,742 comments) says:

    BAHAHAHA which genius came up with “ordinary person”?

    who the hell wants to be ordinary??

    then again, according to Labour, the “ordinary” person in this country is probably on welfare.

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  9. Richard Hurst (710 comments) says:

    How many votes is the Ratana Church worth these days? Do a majority of Maori really vote the way Ratana leaders point?

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  10. Grizz (474 comments) says:

    Muldoon used to say he was for the “ordinary bloke”. Look where that got us….. just shy of a meeting with the good folk of the IMF.

    What I want is a party that represents Kiwis striving for excellence.

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  11. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,663 comments) says:

    HP made a very perceptive observation on this saga. She thinks the Bros have got more brains than Labour (and they have) because they know Labour will not give them for list places so now they’ve got an excuse to publicly back National.

    What she didn’t say was that when they come to National and ask for four high ranking list places John Key will just smile and say ‘Hey, we’ve already got five of your people in the government. We invited them when we did not have to, remember? Tariana, Pita, Hone, Te Ururoa and Rahui.

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  12. s.russell (1,486 comments) says:

    Labour has delivered enormously to Maori over the years of its alliance with Ratana. They have done a huge amount to make the poverty trap so many Maori live in extremely comfortable.

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  13. Grizz (474 comments) says:

    Labour make a lot of political capital out of keeping Maori poor. It seems the people of Ratana want more than that so they are looking elsewhere. Good luck to them I say.

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  14. Fisiani (848 comments) says:

    Labour use Maori as voting fodder and keep them second class.
    National choose to appoint Maori Party leaders as Ministers and will bring in the transformative Whanau Ora.
    This will give Maori responsibility to care for themself. National as the Party of welfare Tinorangatiratanga and Labour as the Party of Dependancy. No wonder National have majority Maori support on the general list.

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  15. stephen (4,063 comments) says:

    who the hell wants to be ordinary??

    I guess ‘mainstream’ was taken! Plenty of articles written about high achievers who ‘aren’t ordinary’ but even so i’d hazard that a lot of people wouldn’t react too well to being told they aren’t an ordinary New Zealander.

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  16. Pete George (21,789 comments) says:

    Depends on the context Stephen. One of life’s contradictions – a lot of people want to be seen as extraordinary but also want to belong to the crowd.

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  17. dime (8,742 comments) says:

    urgh its like the people that celebrate the fact they are “westies”.

    a nation of slackers is what we are!

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  18. Pauleastbay (5,030 comments) says:

    Grizz- are you on drugs? Striving for excellence, wanting the best for you and your family what the hell are you on about. We are New Zealanders , we are not allowed to be successful.
    The New Zealand Labour Party is finished, thank Christ. It will take alot more than Ratana to do anything for them.

    Goff has been the final nail in their coffin, remember he was voted out of Parliment not too many years ago in one of the Labour safe seats, he fairly glows with mediocrity.

    He simpered around that repulsive creature Clark for years and now surely even he can see he no talent, no leadership ability. And this is bloody marvellous it will keep the party in total sub-mediocrity for years, like they have plunged New Zealand into.

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  19. tautokai.baxter (199 comments) says:

    They got a much better welcome than that. Shows how right wing The Herald is. Misrepresenting the facts. Sure there was critisism but they werent jumping for joy at National either.

    “all their big gains have come from National.”

    What absolute rubbish! National just gives tokenistic crap, if you want to see good/solid improvements in the Maori standard of living then it has all come Labour, and to some degree the Greens. A flag or even the foreshore and seabed is not the most important thing for Maori. It’s a smoke screen. I look at the thousands of Maori children in poverty and then see working for families, I look at uneducated Maori and then i see intrest-free student loans. Even if Ratana withdraw their support from Labour it wont mean much to the average Maori. That religion is not the be all and end all, they do not control the whole Maori population. Maori aren’t stupid enough to buy into a National-Maori Party-ACT Government that taxes the poor, cuts benefits, destroys the eductaion system and covers it up with a flag and a repeal that isint likely to give Maori land back. Thats what I see.

    Nga mihi,
    Tautokai

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  20. petal (698 comments) says:

    “ordinary person”

    Why not start using it also, and dilute the intended differentiation they are attempting to achieve?

    Most of us like to think we’re just like any other ordinary person, and it would be more inclusive than divisive.

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  21. KiwiGreg (3,128 comments) says:

    Ratana isn’t “all Maori” any more than the Catholic Church is all…well whoever.

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  22. tautokai.baxter (199 comments) says:

    Exactly. It seems strange that all these political parties go and pander to a religion anyway.

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  23. Pete George (21,789 comments) says:

    Ratana has had a significant influence in NZ politics. Ratana movement MPs:

    1932 – Southern Māori, elected in a by-election
    1935 – Western Māori

    Following the 1935 General Election of the First Labour Government, the two Ratana MPs agreed to vote with Labour. This alliance was formalised with the Ratana movement joining the Labour Party in a meeting between T.W. Ratana and Prime Minister Michael Savage on 22 April 1936

    1938 – Northern Māori
    1943 – Eastern Māori

    The four Māori seats were held by Ratana-affiliated members of Labour until:
    1963 for the Eastern Māori seat,
    1980 for Northern Māori and
    1996 for Western and Southern Māori seats.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R%C4%81tana

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  24. bruceh (101 comments) says:

    Tautokai Baxter could have a look here at the effects of the type of ‘gains Labour’s programs deliver for Maori’ that continue to excite him. Sure, the context is different but the principle of on-going dependency on state resources versus being facilitated to independence.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/fattest-hand-is-first-in-the-till/story-e6frg6zo-1225822681572

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  25. Countess (157 comments) says:

    Was as recent as Don Brashs time as Opposition leader that National had a pakeha as “Maori Affairs” spokesman ignoring their Maori members.
    Gerry Brownlee did the honours. LOL

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  26. Bevan (3,965 comments) says:

    Your right Countess, and just look where they are now!

    Oh right, in Government.

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  27. Kieran_B (79 comments) says:

    This article from The Press seems to point out Goff’s arrogance.

    “Labour leader Phil Goff has laughed off claims his party is losing support from its historical Ratana church allies.

    “He wishes” was Goff’s response yesterday to claims by Prime Minister John Key that the Maori Party had won most Ratana followers over. ”

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/3258076/Goff-scoffs-at-claim-of-losing-church

    Labour still has the born-to-rule mentality. They must think that the Ratana Church should be damn grateful that Goff pays them an annual visit.

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  28. tvb (3,937 comments) says:

    The Labour Party has never given someone identified as Maori a major portfolio in 70 years of Labour Governments. They seem to think Maori get maori affairs but never something more substantual.

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  29. Viking2 (10,687 comments) says:

    TVB; not correct. Matt Rata was one that I recall, Minister of gambling and racing I think. Certainly behaved that way.

    Lieran; Its National with the born to rule mentality. Not a lot of difference these days I will admit.

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  30. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,663 comments) says:

    V2, are you Labour’s secret weapon? Since when has Gambling and Racing been a major portfolio? Hell, it ranks well below Wimin’s Affairs.

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  31. tautokai.baxter (199 comments) says:

    Thats because most successful and intelligent Maori don’t see politics as something to aspire to so Maori MP’s tend not to be of the best quality.

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