History revisisted

August 29th, 2012 at 7:09 am by David Farrar

Audrey Young at NZ Herald reports:

 Former National Party leader and New Zealand’s ambassador to the United Nations today revealed more details around Plan B to deal with the economic caused by Sir in 1984.

It involved the cabinet deposing him.

It also involved the getting Governor General Sir David Beattie to appoint himself, Mr McLay, as a temporary Prime Minister in order to carry out the requests of the incoming Labour Government.

Straight after the snap election in 1984, but before the Labour Government could be sworn in, Reserve Bank and Treasury officials advised Sir Robert to immediately devalue the New Zealand dollar to address the pressure on the currency that had been building.

Their advice had the support of Labour leader and incoming Prime Minister David Lange.

Sir Robert refused, much to the astonishment of Mr McLay, who was his Deputy and outgoing Attorney General.

It was an astonishing stand off, and the closest we have come to a constitutional crisis. It was also a very undignified end to Muldoon’s tenure. It was as if he could not accept he had lost.

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13 Responses to “History revisisted”

  1. vibenna (305 comments) says:

    It was also because David Lange said during the campaign that the government would devalue. This enabled a vast number of people to take forex positions against the NZ government. Muldoon was trying to limit the damage, claiming that people wouldn’t be able to maintain their positions. He was right. The postscript was that Labour came in and found NZ was just about bust. The untold story was how much David Lange’s foolishness during the campaign had to do with that.

    Interestingly, Labour set up an enquiry in the whole mess. But then they closed it down before it reported.

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  2. big bruv (13,554 comments) says:

    Can you ever imagine the left taking such a principled approach to an issue like this should it ever arise with a Labour MP?

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  3. alex (301 comments) says:

    @ BB – What a simpleton you must be if every issue must be boiled down to left vs right. For the record, Muldoon was a megalomaniac drunk on being in power for too long. Nothing to do with his left or rightness.

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  4. big bruv (13,554 comments) says:

    Alex

    A simpleton I might be, however, at least I could work out what the post by DPF is all about.

    This post by DPF is about the reaction of the rest of the National party cabinet to Muldoon.

    Do try and keep up you silly man.

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  5. Griff (6,990 comments) says:

    Sherry
    Pissed in charge of a country
    A good reason to drug test all in responsible positions
    How many of New Zealands management are taking alcohol on a regular basis There should be laws against taking drugs when you have a position of responsibility Alcohol fucked losers are the main reason our economy and share market do so poorly on the world stage. .Random time Drug testing is needed to stop this alcohol fueled decline in economic activity

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  6. tvb (4,247 comments) says:

    Muldoon came very close to causing this country to default on our international obligations. The man is an utter disgrace including all the money he borrowed during the election campaign because he would not accept reality. A very dangerous man who nearly ruined this country’s impeccable name. He should burn in hell for the economic vandalism he did. The PM and Minister of Finance should never be held by the same person

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  7. hmmokrightitis (1,569 comments) says:

    Wow Griff, got any proof of that massive statement of ‘fact’ – “Alcohol fucked losers are the main reason our economy and share market do so poorly on the world stage” – like any factual basis whatsoever?

    As for “How many of New Zealands management are taking alcohol on a regular basis” I would say just about all of them – but so the fuck what? Im ‘management’, and I have a glass or two of wine or a few beers 2 or 3 nights a week. Am I part of the problem? Or is your factless rant part of the issue?

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  8. Hamnida (905 comments) says:

    I have a different angle on the way Muldoon handled matters at the time. What was in it for him to do what Lange, Treasury and the Reserve Bank wanted? Nothing if you ask me. It would just mean Lange and the Fourth Labour Government could shift part of the blame for their monetary experiment onto Muldoon and the outgoing National Government.

    I do not believe we have a constitution that stipulates an outgoing prime minister must follow the instructions of the incoming government.

    Muldoon was stubborn, but for the right reasons.

    Like most men at the time, Muldoon enjoyed a few drinks. Is that a crime?

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  9. Griff (6,990 comments) says:

    hmmokrightitis
    pisshead
    Alcohol is equal to heroin and p in the harm it does are you proud of being a alcoholic?
    Its piss heads like you that ruin this country
    Drunks should be persecuted vilifier and discriminated against .Drunken sots full our hospitals police cells and morgues and you think its ok to be one
    If we are going to persecute those who smoke pot we should do the same with other drugs

    PS at two plus wines in a session you do actually make the definition of a problem drinker

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  10. hmmokrightitis (1,569 comments) says:

    Youve just made my year, thanks Griff :) So, Im a problem drinker, an alcoholic, because I have two glasses of wine 2 or 3 nights a week?

    Youre my ex-wife, arent you? You do realise, given your grip on spelling and grammer that you come across as exactly what you accuse me of being?

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  11. B A W (98 comments) says:

    Muldoon,

    One of the worst PM’s NZ ever had in modern times.

    While I am sure he had nice attributes, and did not take bribes etc. his administration did nothing of note to unwind the significant economic constrictions that previous governments had placed on NZ such as running buissness for social purposes rather than profit. Add to that high tariffs, high government regulation, jobs for life in the civil service, price freezes etc. he was a disaster.

    He wanted to leave NZ similar to how he got it, but instead all we got was 9 more years of poor economic management, when NZ was crying out for reform. The 4th Labour government was one of the best NZ had. (And I am a Nat voter!).

    If I was a voter in 1984 I would happily have voted for Labour. (I was two years old then).

    Muldoon was a bully and his talents as a politician and leader were wasted by him being PM and Minister of Finance.

    I recall Boldger offered him Defense out side of cabinet, which would have been a way to use his talents in a constructive way, he refused.

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  12. Paulus (2,559 comments) says:

    Mudoon was a good Socialist, and he at least admitted it, believeing he was doing the best for all New Zealanders at the time.
    Classical economics in hindsight now tells us that he was not correct, but Roger Douglas saw what needed to be done, and did it – despite Fatso and other ignorant parties.

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  13. Fossil (8 comments) says:

    It was Douglas who almost single-handedly set off the run on the currency – first by advocating devaluation when it wasn’t Labour Party policy and then, when the snap election was called, by releasing his own policy paper which proposed a 20% devaluation. This was a breach of every political convention and was likely to set the taxpayers back several hundred millions, but Lange for some reason didn’t accept Douglas’s offered resignation. When the run continued and the currency crisis came to a head just after the election, there was no option left but devaluation.

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