The Maori King

November 29th, 2012 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

The Dom Post editorial:

The English got rid of the absolute power of the monarchy in 1215 when King John’s seal was attached to the Magna Carta at Runnymede. In Waikato, former MP Tukoroirangi Morgan wants to bring it back to protect the “mana” and “prestige” of the Maori king.

Mr Morgan, a central figure in the long-running dispute between King Tuheitia and sacked Waikato- parliament chairwoman Tania Martin, wants the king given the power to veto decisions made by the parliament and even to dissolve the body that represents ’s 63,000 members. “We must never be able to go to court to settle our differences,” he said this week.

The parliament and Waikato Maori should reject Mr Morgan’s proposal.

The dispute between the king and tribal representatives in the parliament appears to be over control of Treaty settlement moneys that have now grown to $800 million. Those moneys were paid to Tainui by the Crown to settle the historical grievances of all Tainui, not just those of the king or the coterie of advisers who cluster about him.

Decisions about how that money is invested and how the dividends from it are spent should be made by all Tainui.

King Tuheitia’s mother, the Maori queen, Dame Te Atairangikaahu, was widely respected within Maoridom and outside it for the quiet dignity with which she performed her role. Behind the scenes, she knew how to work the phones but, publicly, she made a point of staying above the rough and tumble of politics.

King Tuheitia shows no such restraint. Not only has he got himself offside with the Government and alienated much of the Pakeha world by nonsensically declaring that Maori have “always owned the water”, but he has also allowed himself to be drawn into intra-tribal disputes and wrangles over the spending of Tainui money by the executive Mr Morgan once headed.

King Tuheitia seems to listen to Tuku Morgan only.

Morgan Godfery at Maui Street blogs:

 Gifting the King the power to dissolve tribal parliaments will not solve the political and structural problems in Tainui. At most, inserting the Kingitanga as the ultimate decision maker will only change the way tribal politics is played. So, rather than engage in legal plays**, ambitious tribal politicians will jostle for standing in the Kingitanga. Lobbying, not law, will be du jour. …

Here are the problems: 1) Under Tuku’s model, the King could dissolve TK and override the will of the individual iwi members. …

The troubles in Tainui are not tidy and while I don’t pretend to have all of the answers, I’m sure the answer is not to reduce democracy in favour of feudalism.

The infighting doesn’t affect me directly obviously. But I can’t see feudalism as helping the hapu and whanua of Tainui, for whom the settlements were intended to benefit.

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26 Responses to “The Maori King”

  1. Alan Johnstone (1,087 comments) says:

    “Mr Morgan, a central figure in the long-running dispute between King Tuheitia and sacked Waikato-Tainui parliament chairwoman Tania Martin, wants the king given the power to veto decisions made by the parliament and even to dissolve the body that represents Tainui’s 63,000 members”

    The GG acting in his vice regal capacity in NZ has the ability to do both of these things.

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  2. anonymouse (721 comments) says:

    @Alan Johnstone,

    Yes but the GG has not indicated that he intends to use those power, nor does he make public comments on the running of the country…

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  3. Manolo (14,031 comments) says:

    The truck driver, aka Maori King, is disqualified to offer advice on important matters.
    He should confine himself to discuss trivial matters within the scope of his low intellect.

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  4. david (2,561 comments) says:

    To call him “the Maori King” is an immediate misnomer bordering on fraud. By all means call him the Paramount Chief of Tainui but creating a familial succession of royalty is a fictional creation of the 20th Century.

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  5. RRM (10,001 comments) says:

    Meanwhile, Ngai Tahu continue to grow their investments and employ people around the south island.

    Pity the corrupt little spendthrifts of Tainui can’t seem to learn something from their example…

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  6. mara (794 comments) says:

    What Manolo said.

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  7. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    Remind me to buy popcorn on the way home…

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  8. tvb (4,497 comments) says:

    The King is supposed to be a unifying figure. Instead he is a source of friction and dissent. I do not think he is bright enough to understand his role and how to enhance his position. It is hard to say where this will end. But it is not likely he will expand beyond being the paramount chief of Tainui. Whereas the Maori Queen did project herself beyond this. The first step would be to remove the influence of Morgan. But the King is becoming a controversial figure

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  9. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    We must never be able to go to court to settle our differences

    I’ve read that 4 times carefully, and I still can’t believe anyone would say that.

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  10. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Maori are not interested in democracy. Their pysche is hedged around mana.

    When pakeha understand this essential precipice of Maori thinking, they will understand Maori more.

    Pride…… That’s all Maori understand. Ego.

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  11. thedavincimode (6,869 comments) says:

    Is it possible that Tuku is lining himself up for a new pair of underpants?

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  12. Manolo (14,031 comments) says:

    hinamanu, why don’t you return to your original nickname: trivialrev?

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  13. nocommentkiwi (35 comments) says:

    Tribal politics are as complex as those of central government (arguably more complex), it’s extraordinarily difficult for those who do not have a good grasp of their history, and a close understanding of the current dynamics and power-relationships to provide any substantive analysis – from the outside-looking-in it’s a complete mire. These issues aren’t well documented, and it’s near impossible to get a good view of what’s ‘going on’ without actually being involved. Tainui people will be the best to sort out their governance structures (and in the process, it would be useful if they shared their rationale, but not necessary), those of us who aren’t involved are probably best to steer clear of it. Our speculation is hardly informed.

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  14. thedavincimode (6,869 comments) says:

    Our speculation is hardly informed.

    You’re new here so perhaps I should explain the rules. Never let ignorance stand in the way of expressing an opinion.

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  15. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    @Manolo

    time will tell.

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  16. scrubone (3,104 comments) says:

    Tainui people will be the best to sort out their governance structures (and in the process, it would be useful if they shared their rationale, but not necessary), those of us who aren’t involved are probably best to steer clear of it.

    There are certain facts of human nature that transend cultures. Cutting people off from justice is never a good thing.

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  17. nocommentkiwi (35 comments) says:

    RE: Hinamanu

    Democracy is ‘rule by the people’, the mechanisms of democracy vary significantly in each instance. Consider Direct/representative democracy, parliaments, congress/senates, ecclesia etc.

    Just because we don’t necessarily recognize the mechanism being used by a group, doesn’t mean they’ve no concept of democracy – perhaps just a different application or conception of it than ourselves.

    Geoff Kemp writes in New Zealand Government & Politics (p. 385, 5 ed.):

    “The best idea of the political constitution enjoyed by New Zealanders, therefore, may be to describe it as a democracy with elite influence. That, at least, was the verdict of the early colonial official, Edward Shortland, on encountering political society among ‘the New Zealanders’ (by which he meant Maori, it being the 1840s). ‘The power of individual chiefs depends much on public opinion, and few matters of importance are undertaken except after having been submitted to public discussion,’ observed Shortland. ‘No people in the world are greater lovers of freedom than the New Zealanders; and the best idea to be given of the political constitution of their society will be to describe it as a democracy, limited by a certain amount of patriarchal influence’ (Shortland 2001, p.119)”

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  18. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    Alan Johnstone –
    the GG is the GG for ALL of New Zealand. The fouled mouthed ex truck driver (aka – the maori king) is some jumped up little twerp who holds some sway among a small group of waiakto maori. I cant undrestand how you connect the two…..

    The fouled mouthed truck drivers intellect can be seen by him allowing that ratbag Tuku (the father of rip-offs who learned his trade at maori televsion) be his spokesman. I thought that the waikato maori had learned lessons from the past. When they got their original treaty settlement they immediately hired a large airplane (thought to be a 747) to take members of the tribe to a warriors league game in sydney (where they were firmly beaten). I guess it was on that trip when the tribe decided to invest in some apartment development over there – which have since collapsed.
    However it now seems that the general level of intellegence among the tribe is universally low as they continue to exhibit signals that at least this group of maori are intellectually inferior to all other New Zealanders.

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  19. thedavincimode (6,869 comments) says:

    barry

    It’s that bloody river. It makes their brains damp.

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  20. Harriet (5,118 comments) says:

    In any hierarchical structure, the good people stand up for those below them, and they don’t pat their own backs or those above themselves. And that is how they last as inter-generational institutions as it is only the ‘good people’ who get to the top.

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  21. Keeping Stock (10,407 comments) says:

    RRM said

    Meanwhile, Ngai Tahu continue to grow their investments and employ people around the south island.

    Pity the corrupt little spendthrifts of Tainui can’t seem to learn something from their example…

    Absolutely agree RRM. No iwi has been more pro-active than Ngai Tahu in trying to do something intentional and enduring for its people. They have set the bar high. Tainui instead invested in hotels and football teams, and paid the price.

    And all the while Tuku Morgan seems to have secured himself a lifetime first-class ticket on the ToW gravy train. I wonder how much the undies that cost $95 in 1996 go for today.

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  22. thedavincimode (6,869 comments) says:

    KS

    Substantially more I would say. With the price of gold thread nowadays, that “TUKU JUNIOR” embossing on the Y front will have increased the cost enormously.

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  23. lastmanstanding (1,300 comments) says:

    The horis have a better handle of aristocracy than the Poms. have a look at the hand ful of Hori families who control the TOW funds and make sure they and their mates are the only beneficaries.
    That moron Douglas and Bolger were conned. They should have made it a condition that the funds flowed to all the Horis not just the few and that the condition of the settlements was that no more White MotherF…r taxes were going to paid out to the horis. Thats what the TOW settlements should be used for.

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  24. pq (728 comments) says:

    Idiot maori ndigger

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  25. Kevin (1,122 comments) says:

    What a load of crap. The shouldn’t even be a Waikato tainui friggin parliament. Separatism should be crushed.

    Btw, At least the pommy aristocracy did something in return for their pay.

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  26. lilman (965 comments) says:

    Bullshit is contagious ,and Morgan and Co along with Hinamaru are full of it.
    Maori are all about pride and Mana.
    Fuck yes ,I mean a name such as Kahui spring to mind.
    Still I guess being a European I just havent figured the Maori way out yet, even though I have been married to a amazing Maori lass for along and happy time.

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