Cullen on the constitution

February 6th, 2013 at 3:00 pm by David Farrar

Sir writes in the NZ Herald:

It is no great secret that I am, by and large, a constitutional conservative, supportive of parliamentary supremacy, and therefore opposed to a written constitution which has the status of supreme law, not fussed about New Zealand continuing to be a constitutional monarchy, a little sceptical about how much of the burden of defining a nation the Treaty can bear, and generally holding the view that the onus of proof in relation to any proposed constitutional change lies with the proponents of that change.

I agree the onus of proof for constitutional change should lie with the proponents.

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32 Responses to “Cullen on the constitution”

  1. wreck1080 (3,956 comments) says:

    I think many people who were in favour of adopting a constitution are now changing their minds due to the maori problem.

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  2. thedavincimode (6,867 comments) says:

    Any reference to meeting the onus of proof in removing the Privy Council? Any mention of the constitutional implications of a government voting to legalise the theft of public money after the event?

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  3. Sofia (862 comments) says:

    Whatever a Constitution should contain, it should NOT be based on a bloody ancient badly written multi-language fucking awful real-estate agreement.

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  4. thedavincimode (6,867 comments) says:

    wreck1080

    I’m not so concerned about what you describe as the “maori” problem. I’m more concerned with the fuckwit problem and the constitutional rights of fuckwits and in particular, the right of fuckwits to vote. eg people who think that the fact that the NZ has a strengthened currency against the US and the Eurozone because our economy is relatively in far far better shape is somehow the “fault” of the government, and that the government should be doing something to make the economy weaker so our currency is weaker. The sort of fuckwit who would rail against the disgraceful behaviour of the last Labour governments whilst happily sucking on the WFF tit, and then think about voting for them next time around so they can fuck the economy and reduce the exchange rate.

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  5. kowtow (8,730 comments) says:

    Parliamentary supremacy,yes. But only if genuinely answerable to the electorate. And that’s more than casting a vote once every 3 years.
    Binding referenda on important matters such as child discipline,asset sales,marriage ,anything to do with the “Treaty”and the constitution.

    In other words ,we plebs are not properly represented by our “representatives”.

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  6. Jack5 (5,145 comments) says:

    Thedavincimode at 3.35:

    Look in the mirror to find the fuckwits, TDM.

    I haven’t heard of anyone suggesting that the economy be weakened to lower the NZ dollar.

    It’s the high kiwi that’s already weakening the economy. Controlling should strengthen the economy. Switzerland, Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, and many others work on their currency and their economies are all far stronger than ours.

    I see, too, TDM, that you’re worried about the right to vote of those who disagree with you. Bit totalitarian, don’t you think?

    But on the main topic of this thread. I agree with Cullen. The unwritten constitution has been one of the political jewels we have inherited from Britain. It’s worth fighting for.

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  7. Griff (8,153 comments) says:

    “his latter panel is described in terms which can only be taken to mean that it is supposed to be part of some conspiracy to impose radical constitutional change on New Zealand, in particular a written constitution which has the status of supreme law, incorporating the Treaty of Waitangi, which will then be interpreted by a Supreme Court with a pro-Maori bias to the detriment of the rest of New Zealand.

    Even in what has been an unusually hot and dry summer this claim can only be described as proceeding from somewhat fevered imaginations.”

    Of the unbiased panel there are.

    Linda Tuhiwai Smith is professor of Education and Māori Development and Pro-Vice Chancellor Māori at the University of Waikato

    Hinurewa Poutū is a doctoral student at Massey University and a teacher at Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Mana Tamariki

    Dr Leonie Pihama is a mother of six and a grandmother of one. Her work focuses on the community as well as researching Māori and indigenous education with an emphasis on Kaupapa Māori

    Perhaps best known for leading the negotiations for two of the largest Treaty settlements (Māori Fisheries and Ngāi Tahu), Sir Tipene O’Regan also has extensive governance and commercial experience.

    Sir Michael is currently the chair of New Zealand Post and principal Treaty Claims negotiator for Ngāti Tūwharetoa

    Dr Ranginui Walker was a member of the New Zealand Māori Council and the World Council of Indigenous People.

    Five out of twelve are directly involved in maori claims or maori education

    ONE out of ten would be a true reflection of the people of New Zealand.

    Why the focus of maori educationists?

    The same reason the panel allocated more funding to find the views of maori than it did to all the rest of us.

    That Sir Micheal himself is taking part in this farce shows the duplicity of the man.

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  8. thedavincimode (6,867 comments) says:

    jack5

    hudson has already explained why you are wrong, but if you think that you are the one who left that discussion with credibility in tact then it is you who should be looking in the mirror. You don’t help your argument by glibly comparing apples with jumbo jets.

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  9. JeffW (327 comments) says:

    Perhaps the most sensible comments I have ever seen from Michael Cullen.

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  10. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    the USA firearms situation is the perfect reason to be vary wary of a written constitution. Once its written they tend to be very hard to change and what looks good now will be wrong in 25 years.

    But then again if parents rights had been in a already existing document, then we wouldnt see the removal of parenting tools like we saw.

    Its a very potentially dangerous area to go – and we should go very slowly.

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  11. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    “I agree the onus of proof for constitutional change should lie with the proponents.”

    Where Cullen is involved in the proof the “O” should be changed to an “A” ! :)

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  12. Pete George (23,680 comments) says:

    Jeffw – I agree that Cullen’s comments sounded sensible.

    Binding referenda on important matters such as child discipline,asset sales,marriage ,anything to do with the “Treaty”and the constitution.

    If everyone was able to put their pet issues in the binding referenda pile it would be impossible to govern. There has to be a sensible way of triggering binding referenda.

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  13. Manolo (14,026 comments) says:

    Michael Cullen is a despicable man whose opinion is tantamount to nothing.

    One of the destroyers of the NZ economy, alongside his boss comrade Clark, he’s sucked from the public teat all his life and want to tell us, peasants, what to do.

    A national disgrace he is. Even worse after his elevation to Sir.

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  14. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    Still Manolo……… As long as he delivers the letters on time! :)

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  15. Colville (2,298 comments) says:

    I am with Manolo on this one.
    Cullen is the lowest of the low. Presided over NZs financed thru unprecedented boom times and all he managed to do was buy a train set and lock NZ into ongoing debt with middle class welfare election bribes in the form of WFF and intrest free student loans.
    I would call him a smug little cunt but cunts are actually useful.

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  16. Kea (13,317 comments) says:

    the USA firearms situation is the perfect reason to be vary wary of a written constitution.

    I think it is good argument for a written constitution.

    barry, What you are really saying is that, laws you do not agree with should be easy to change. You are seem to assume that this does not work both ways. Laws that you do agree with can be changed just as easily.

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  17. tropicana (79 comments) says:

    Sofia at 3:27 pm said: … a badly written multi-language fucking awful …

    Sofia. Fortunately for white New Zealanders, the Treaty was completed on only one language – Maori.
    If we could only stick to this truth, half of the Treaty industry would never have gotten away with what it has. The idiocy is in relying in a contemptibly bad back-translations into English, translations which are more generous to Maori than the actual Treaty was.And we are shit-scared to say to any Maori, “no, that is not a correct translation”. The word “taonga” is the perfect example.

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  18. thedavincimode (6,867 comments) says:

    Colville

    Can I propose a compromise perhaps? “A smug little cunt who not only isn’t the least bit useful, but who parked his nuts in Klerk’s wall safe after Klerk gave him a smacking and made himself feel better by having a dump on the country’s fiscal dining table.”

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  19. duggledog (1,580 comments) says:

    I worry he’s saying this because he knows full well the outcome and he wants to distance himself from the outcome for posterity.

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  20. Megatron (190 comments) says:

    Cullen is a cunt

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  21. SPC (5,770 comments) says:

    Cullen was right to pay off debt and build up the Cullen Fund rather than hand out the surplus money in tax cuts.

    His party was right to obtain his ultimate consent for dispersal of the surplus in the form of WFF. Families depend on this and no credible party seeking office would revisit the decision.

    The interest free student debt was necessary to ensure graduates could have a future here in New Zealand and again no credible party seeking office would seek to revisit the decision.

    His mistakes were

    A – not containing house price inflation and thus the rising OCR that brought us to recession before the GFC.

    1. not developing a CGT on non owner occupied (or if none first rental) property.
    2. not developing an loan to value criteria for investment property (to reduce speculation led leveraging).
    3. not placing a surcharge on investment mortgages to contain house price inflation.

    B – not moving to make the Cullen Fund contribution based once the surplus years came to an end

    1. 2% from the employee and 2% from the employer into this fund by compulsion.
    2. another 2-4% from the employee and 1-2% from the employer into Kiwi Saver. This being voluntary and supported by the $1000 start-up and .5/1% from the government.

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  22. BlairM (2,363 comments) says:

    Asking Michael Cullen what he thinks of the idea of a written constitution is like asking the fox what he thinks of the idea of protecting the henhouse.

    Possibly only the UN Human Rights committee provides a more ridiculous spectacle.

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  23. Manolo (14,026 comments) says:

    davinci, you forgot to add Cullen was made Sir by your beloved (and infallible) National Party, the spineless Labour lite.

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  24. big bruv (14,122 comments) says:

    SPC

    “Cullen was right to pay off debt and build up the Cullen Fund rather than hand out the surplus money in tax cuts.”

    Rubbish, what Cullen should have done is give the money back to the people he took it from in the first place. If he wanted to pay off debt then he should have made the savings in other areas (social welfare).

    I love the way you try and justify the election bribes that are interest free student loans and working for other peoples families. Both of these policies were naked vote grabbers, nothing more and nothing less.

    Megatron summed up Cullen well in his comment at 10.57pm last night.

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  25. Griff (8,153 comments) says:

    sps
    WWF is middle class welfare. Who ends up working for family’s? those who dont have them
    Free student loans so students can take the money and run to Aussie
    He mistake is some of us are not here to have money stolen from them to give to those who breed.

    He is giving our future to the maori. The panel is massively predisposed to see the claims of maoridom as more important than the rights of the rest of us. To have such a loaded panel then claim it is not is bullshit

    The results of this panel will be a document that is heavy on the treaty and light on the rights of the rest of us.
    I doubt that when it sees the light of day there will be a majority support for its conclusions.
    This result will become a rod for maori to beat us with for the next generation of greedy maori claims

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  26. SPC (5,770 comments) says:

    big bruv, government rules on behalf of the people. That National was elected on the commitment to retain WFF and interest free loans indicates the result of its own polling on these issues.

    The people had a choice between larger tax credits to families or lower tax cuts to all, they chose the former. National accepts that result.

    Griff, it’s not middle class welfare when the largest tax credits go to the lowest income families. It included the middle class to prioritise the delivery of middle class tax cuts to those with families to support.

    Grandparents don’t resent WFF, singles who do are too selfish to have children – and so ignorant they forget they will later get the tax credits when they need them most. WFF is just an income boost insurance scheme where you pay in before children, collect big time when there are dependent children and then pay in again once they leave home. It’s the only way to afford mortgages and families at the same time on our level of wages.

    If National can double real level wages we can move on from WFF, if they cannot …

    Those in Oz don’t have interest free debt and we now work with Oz to get repayment.

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  27. Griff (8,153 comments) says:

    You do not have a coherent view of welfare transfer do you
    “It included the middle class to priorities the delivery of middle class tax cuts to those with families to support”

    A direct transfer of wealth from those who make the choice not to breed indiscriminately to those that do and expect others to pick up the tab
    I call this welfare you call it a tax cut FFS a tax cut cuts taxes WWF increases the tax burden Every dollar taken from us gets shrunken in the governments hands before what is left going to those it is subsidizing.

    “WFF is just an income boost insurance scheme” With those who do not breed paying the premiums of those who do.

    If I chose not to breed I should not be penalized by stealing of me to support those who do.

    Stop stealing My income to pay for Your snotty kids!

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  28. big bruv (14,122 comments) says:

    SPC

    So you are happy for the parasites and bludgers (those who have more kids than they can afford) to be sent a message every week that they need not worry about personal responsibility, they need not worry about being a responsible member of society because others (the ones who do not want to bludge from their fellow Kiwis) will be forced to pay for their parasitic lifestyle by a government that is not brave enough to do away with middle and lower class welfare.

    Every week we send these bludgers a message via their bank balance, it says “keep on breeding the next generation of parasites, don’t worry about the cost, the tax payer will pay for your lifestyle”

    It is no wonder that bene bashing is becoming a popular pastime (and one that is to be encouraged), those of us who pay the bloody tax are sick of funding losers.

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  29. SPC (5,770 comments) says:

    Griff, taxation assessed on dependents in support is not welfare. Only lower income families receive more in tax credits than they pay in tax. There is no middle class welfare – they pay net tax. Delivering tax cuts to those in the middle class in this form – so they go exclusively to those raising children – is not welfare.

    As for yourself and those others not intending to have children. So you expect other people to raise children so they can pay the taxes to support you in retirement. The least you can do is allow government to prioritise tax cuts to these families – given your intent to bludge your super off them.

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  30. UglyTruth (4,551 comments) says:

    The NZ parliament is based on the civil system and on fraud, and as such can never achieve supremacy. The fraud is the promotion of the assumption that its legislation is binding upon those who have no obligation to the state. Also, the NZ parliament misleads the public about the nature of common law which forms the basis of the English unwritten constitution. Common law is not merely case law, but originates with aspects of Judaic law from the time of King Alfred the Great.

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  31. SPC (5,770 comments) says:

    big bruv, those on benefits don’t get WFF. WFF is just tax cuts targeted to those with children to support – those on middle incomes pay net tax.

    Sure some of those on lower incomes get net tax credits. But this is by design to both create an incentive to work and to support the low wage levels required to maintain employment.

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  32. Griff (8,153 comments) says:

    Delivering tax cuts to those in the middle class in this form – so they go exclusively to those raising children – is not welfare

    It may not be to welfare to you to me its theft to pay for your kids

    it is income transfer to those who expect others to pay for their own lifestyle choice

    I all ready pay for your kids by supporting education and health infrastructure that I do not use To take even more to directly subsidized your children is doubling value transfer to breeders.
    You should assure you future before you breed not force others to pay your mortgage because you are to stupid to prioritize your future .
    All wwf does is encourage the responsible to leave new Zealand as a Single person. The theft of income directly effects your earning capacity as a childless person in this country. Those that leave for more nett income do not return

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