Whyte and Seymour elected

February 2nd, 2014 at 4:23 pm by David Farrar

have announced:

This morning the ACT Board met to choose the new leader and a candidate for Epsom.

The Board’s decision was made by a secret ballot, which was conducted by an independent auditor.

The Board is confident that its decision will give ACT its best chance of successfully contesting this year’s general election with a Leader and Epsom Candidate who can powerfully and positively share the Party’s vision with voters.

The new leader will assume the role at the Party’s AGM on the 28th of February, and until that time, will serve as the leader-elect.

It is my privilege to announce that the person who will stand as the ACT candidate for Epsom is  and the new leader of the ACT Party will be Dr. 

The Board acknowledges that it had three outstanding candidates seeking selection and thanks all of them for their commitment, energy, and passion.

In particular, the Board wants to acknowledge Party President, Hon , who’s record of service to the Party in a variety of roles throughout ACT’s history is recognised and valued.

This is a brave, yet risky, decision.

On a personal level I’m pleased to see two strong classical liberals take up the two key roles, and this should mean that ACT is clearly positioned in the future as a classical liberal party, not a conservative party or some hybrid.

One has to pay tribute to John Boscawen who has stood with ACT through thick and thin. It was noble of him to offer himself for the leadership and Epsom, and it is understandable that he is stepping aside:

John Boscawen said he had resigned as Act President and would be reconsidering his financial support of the party.

He would no longer be fundraising for the party which he had done for four elections, but he would remain a member.

So ACT has a numbers of risks, as well as opportunities ahead. The risks are:

  • Difficult to attract funding
  • Not winning Epsom
  • Struggling for media attention as both Whyte and Seymour not particularly public figures

The opportunities are:

  • Can draw a line with the past, as leadership clearly passes to a new generation
  • A clearer identity as a classical liberal party
  • The potential to attract votes from younger urban liberals

With the funding issue, it is to early too know. I gather than quite a few of the traditional supporters wwere supporting Whyte so they may continue to get some money from them. But they will miss having Boscawen as their fundraiser, and may struggle to connect with some in the business community as Whyte and Seymour are both more from the academic side.

Winning Epsom is the big thing. Seymour is very capable and competent and I can’t imagine a scenario where he stuffs up. However Epsom is not a classical liberal electorate. It is fairly conservative in some ways. Epsom won’t vote for Seymour because he is very smart on policy issues. They will vote for him if they think doing so will help John Key remain Prime Minister, and they think he would be a good local MP. David should (and probably has) talk to Rodney about keeping Epsom onside.

Whyte will I believe be very good with the media, and in the minor party leadership debates. However until the campaign itself starts he may find it very difficult to gain media attention unless he says something very controversial (which may not be helpful). He needs to find around three key issues on which to brand ACT.

For Whyte to become an MP, he needs to lift ACT’s vote from 1.1% to 1.2%. Not impossible, but considering the brand damage over the last two years, a significant challenge. If both Whyte and Seymour can make it to Parliament, then ACT’s will have a future.

Tags: , , ,

90 Responses to “Whyte and Seymour elected”

  1. mister nui (1,030 comments) says:

    Very disappointed to see Boscawen sidelined – effectively removing him from the party machine.

    Will wait and see how Whyte goes leading the party before I commit to financial support again.

    Vote: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. igm (1,413 comments) says:

    A bloody shame, JB was the man to lead this party back to recognition.

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. Tautaioleua (324 comments) says:

    So ACT is moving from business to academia? but isn’t academia already over-represented in parliament?

    Huge gamble here.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 23 Thumb down 8 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. NK (1,259 comments) says:

    There were always going to be losers. I sincerely hope John reconsiders. He has a lot to offer. I have been in this position myaelf where I was rejected and saw it as a huge kick in the face. But the party is bigger than one individual and I very much hope John comes to that realisation. No one dislikes John, but it is what it is.

    And I don’t see this as a classical liberal v conservative battle. Unfortunately John has appeared to make it that. As a party member of 17 years, I honestly couldn’t care less about these labels. Indeed, there are very few classical liberals in the country that will vote for us so pigeonholing into that area is silly. Tolerance is a virtue, and it’s nonsense to reject potential members because they don’t fit a certain type. Political parties need people so the more the merrier. At the end of the day the fight should never be within but across the other side of the House. Let’s take it there and forget these archaic labels.

    Vote: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. Warren Murray (316 comments) says:

    A very brave decision. A Couple of earnest, energetic guys who are completely unknown to the electorate and presumably have no money to speak of, v a former member who was also a minister in his first term and has been personally funding Act’s life support.

    thanks John, your efforts have not gone unnoticed.

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 29 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. hj (7,167 comments) says:

    I don’t think people trust ACT anymore, they associate it with a purist theoretical economic model that doesnt work in the real world. A bit like socialism and multiculturalism propenents will claim “but it hasnt been tried yet”. Plus people associate it with greed.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 24 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. deadrightkev (610 comments) says:

    I am stunned and amazed beyond words. Absolutely fantastic news.

    The Act board has at long last made a decision that gives the party membership hope and optimism heading into a general election. The board must be congratulated.

    I don’t know either Seymour or Whyte personally but from what I have been told by senior insiders the party has a chance. It is up to these two to make every post a winning one.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 16 Thumb down 9 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. PaulL (5,449 comments) says:

    A brave decision, but I think the right one – I think going with John risked becoming a one man party. And I think Whyte and Seymour are the guys to bring ACT back from the wilderness – so long as they don’t screw up. I’m worried about them being both young and untested.

    I don’t think funding will be a massive issue – a party with the name recognition of ACT shouldn’t need a hell of a lot of funding, and I’m sure whilst they’ll lose some supporters they’ll also gain some. A more important question to me is whether they can find and motivate volunteers. 1.2% isn’t a huge target, they should be aiming for 2.4% really.

    Agree it’s not ideal for John, but I suspect he also recognises that the party needs a refresh. I would have hoped he’d stay on as president, but I can understand why he might not want to.

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    This is fantastic news which will fire up many ACT faithful and those who’ve left are now coming back, I’ve heard of a number who signed up to ACT again immediately on hearing this news.

    Boscawen would’ve meant carrying on the troubles of ACT’s past, while now ACT has a bright fresh future ahead of them.

    Vote: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. PaulL (5,449 comments) says:

    @hj: I feel like that’s about as useful as me claiming that people don’t trust the Greens any more, reflecting the fact that I’ve personally never trusted them. I don’t think you were ever likely to be an ACT voter.

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. deadrightkev (610 comments) says:

    NK

    “Tolerance is a virtue, and it’s nonsense to reject potential members because they don’t fit a certain type.”

    I agree and that should have been the case in the past but it wasn’t. Some quality well meaning people were treated with contempt and it is a great shame. Maybe now a united front can be achieved?

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. Nukuleka (402 comments) says:

    Traditional conservatives have been sidelined to a large degree already by the National Party, and this move by ACT contributes to the alienation of those holding more traditional social views. The only place for us to go is now the Conservatives.

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. nasska (12,107 comments) says:

    ….”Traditional conservatives have been sidelined……The only place for us to go is now the Conservatives.”….

    It will be great to have you all in the same place where you can be identified & ignored. :)

    Vote: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    Nukuleka, perhaps not a bad thing…. let the Conservative Party clearly be those who are from the conservative wing of the National Party.

    And let ACT be those who are clearly from the liberal wing of the National Party.

    It might mean an end to some of the past infighting and struggles within ACT, as it tried to cater to both.

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. MikeG (425 comments) says:

    Does Boscawen believe in ACT or himself?

    Imagine the howls of outrage from Farrar if Labour nominated a writer and philosopher for a key seat!!!

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. John Boscawen (123 comments) says:

    David, let me use your blog to correct a few comments in the media.

    I am “not cutting my ties with Act”. I have been a continuous member of Act since 1995 and I expect to remain so. Act’s values are my values.

    I told the media I fully support the Board’s decision to select Jamie and David and I wish them all the best. I hope they are successful, very successful and no one will be more pleased to be proved wrong than I.

    However one of the reasons I stood was because I believed the strategy of a splitting the roles was flawed and risky. I also believed we must never take the Epsom seat for granted and I believed that with my greater profile and former parliamentary and ministerial experience I was the candidate most likely to retain Epsom. And to be recognised by the media as likely to do so as early as possible in the campaign. I also believed that my strategy was the best chance for David and Jamie to get into parliament, and I still do today at 5.20 on February 2nd.

    Given however that I had a different view to the one chosen, I told the Board yesterday that I would consider a rejection of my proposal to be a vote of no confidence in me, and that I would have no alternative but to stand down as president. No self respecting person in the same circumstances would do otherwise. It is also only fair to Jamie that he has an opportunity to select a person who could stand for election as president. He needs someone heading the party who he can have full confidence in.

    Secondly, I also told the Board that while giving my own money was one issue, asking others to support a strategy I so strongly disagreed with would preclude me from asking others to support the party financially with any credibility and integrity. I have said that I am happy to sit down with both Jamie and Treasurer Lindsay Fergusson and fully brief them on donor relationships

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 51 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Good on you John, appreciate the post.

    I think that a philosopher and a student politico think tanker are not really attractive backgrounds so will not endear me for starters

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. nasska (12,107 comments) says:

    MikeG

    On past form I doubt DPF would have much outrage concerning who Labour put forward for any seat.

    Just the usual chuckle at their ineptitude.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. Chuck Bird (4,910 comments) says:

    “Does Boscawen believe in ACT or himself?”

    What sort of question is that. ACT like any political party continuously changes over time.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. iMP (2,457 comments) says:

    Depending on when John key calls the election, ACT has less than 300 days to grow 5% (the equivalent of 350 votes every day) with an unknown leader and candidate. Even if they win Epsom with a leg-up (not a given, as Consv will likely challenge in Epsom and beat them on votes) they have little to offer National anyway.

    At its best, ACT has only ever been a nuance of National; so why will people vote for this tired minnow with an undefined political branding of difference. Thats what MMP is about: Greens, Maori, Conservatives. ACT has made itself terminally irrelevant and trading on Brash Hiding personalities and yellow jackets and dance competitions too long.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 17 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. greybeard (63 comments) says:

    “..this should mean that ACT is clearly positioned in the future as a classical liberal party, not a conservative party or some hybrid. ”
    What ? You must have forgotten what the acronym “ACT” means: Association of Consumers and Taxpayers. This does not suggest anything liberal at all. To me it speaks of conservatism, accountability, responsibility: hardly terms one would ascribe to “liberal”.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. lolitasbrother (774 comments) says:

    In my opinion ACT started dying ten years ago, I was there, but look at any old rich man, it is hard to kill the thing.
    Even Rodney hangs around being relevant.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 12 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. Joanne (177 comments) says:

    This is great news. The only chance ACT had of surviving was either Whyte/Whyte or Whyte/Seymour.

    It’s also a long term decision, not just a short term. Unfortunately, John Boscawen was tarred with being Nationals choice, true or not. This is distinguishing the party as it should be.

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. Radman (143 comments) says:

    At its best, ACT has only ever been a nuance of National; so why will people vote for this tired minnow with an undefined political branding of difference. Thats what MMP is about: Greens, Maori, Conservatives. ACT has made itself terminally irrelevant and trading on Brash Hiding personalities and yellow jackets and dance competitions too long.

    iMP, haven’t you missed out the CH in front of your moniker? Ha ha. You write like a monkey!!

    Your Ultra Christian Conservative views are outdated and have been rejected ever since MMP was introduced! And you think the NeoCons have a chance?!?! Ha ha. Not a chance.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    Just saw seymour on the news, not endearing, white seemed ok

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 8 You need to be logged in to vote
  26. deadrightkev (610 comments) says:

    greybeard

    I agree. There are libertarians, conservatives and liberals who vote Act because no party can get all policies right for their particular ideals. All views should be welcomed and I watch with interest to see what happens next from the new leader. It could be a turning point for Act and the right.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  27. radvad (736 comments) says:

    Just sent them a hundy for starters. Very sorry though that John threw his toys, I have a lot of time for him and feel sure that given time he will come back on board. I sure hope so anyway.

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  28. lolitasbrother (774 comments) says:

    you back ACT Farrar you loose election

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 14 You need to be logged in to vote
  29. radvad (736 comments) says:

    “Just saw seymour on the news, not endearing, white seemed ok”

    And you have a long list of “endearing” politicians?

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  30. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    radvad
    no but it would be a good start and i did prefer Whyte over Seymour so something about him was better

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  31. doggone7 (849 comments) says:

    “Epsom won’t vote for Seymour because he is very smart on policy issues. They will vote for him if ..” John Key tells them to.

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  32. jonno1 (82 comments) says:

    iMP and Greybeard have nailed it, despite Radman’s mocking. As an Epsom resident whose electorate vote has been for Act in several elections, I will be watching developments very closely this year. I doubt that I will be alone in this, the problem being that Act now seems indistinguishable from National, being economically conservative but socially liberal. So why bother? I don’t speak for my peers in Epsom, but I’m pretty sure that those whom I know personally will have similar reservations. And BTW, conservative values are not exclusive to Christians (nor are all Christians conservative).

    PS What’s happened to iMP’s blog?

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  33. peterwn (3,335 comments) says:

    Those who criticise David Seymour for being a philosopher and a ‘think tanker’. Even if some people think that a ‘think tanker’ is not a real job, David has held down real engineering jobs. So he would have a professional background that is very rare in Parliament (along with Nick Smith and possibly one other).

    Vote: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  34. martinh (1,272 comments) says:

    What were his engineering jobs? That led him to think tanking

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  35. publicwatchdog (3,148 comments) says:

    Looks like the final ACT to me…..

    Penny Bright

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    http://www.pennybright4epsom.org.nz

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 20 You need to be logged in to vote
  36. nasska (12,107 comments) says:

    ….”What’s happened to iMP’s blog?”…..

    Sunk….no survivors. :)

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  37. Joanne (177 comments) says:

    jonno1

    Yes keep watching. I agree ACT is indistinguishable for National and that’s the problem because ACTs principles are different to National. That’s why at least Whyte had to be appointed.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  38. mara (770 comments) says:

    Many of us reach for our revolvers when we hear the word “Liberal.” Colin Craig just got an up-vote.

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 9 You need to be logged in to vote
  39. nickb (3,696 comments) says:

    Penny you are remarkably chirpy for someone that doesn’t know what a liquidation is, and can’t use a public database.

    I recommend you attend some of these classes:

    http://www.seniornet.co.nz/

    Or maybe a simple brain transplant would be more effective?

    Vote: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  40. jonno1 (82 comments) says:

    You raised a good point Joanne, so I looked them up. Here are Act’s principles: http://www.act.org.nz/?q=principles, and here are National’s: http://www.national.org.nz/About/standsfor.aspx.

    To me at a glance they are not dissimilar, but neither espouse liberalism, in fact National specifically mentions family values. The one difference I can see is that Act promotes small government. But what is odd is that National doesn’t actually quote its founding principles, which are: “To promote good citizenship and self-reliance; to combat communism and socialism; to maintain freedom of contract; to encourage private enterprise; to safeguard individual rights and the privilege of ownership; to oppose interference by the State in business, and State control of industry”.

    So Mara’s point about the Conservative Party being the only, well, conservative party, is valid, despite some reservations about their economic policies.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  41. Yoza (1,926 comments) says:

    What is ACT if not a National party sock-puppet? ACT needs the approval of the National party to have a snowballs chance in hell of winning the Epsom electorate, as a consequence the National party can demand anything it wants and ACT obeys or becomes one with oblivion.

    I’m surprised National didn’t impose another one of their washed out MPs on ACT to let the Epsom electorate know they aren’t really voting for a different party. A vote for ACT in Epsom is a vote for the sounding board National likes to use to promote policies which are suicide by ballot-box anywhere else in the country.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 19 You need to be logged in to vote
  42. BlairM (2,340 comments) says:

    It’s a shame the Board didn’t go for the most obvious choice of Boscawen – the one which was most likely to continue ACT’s Parliamentary representation and build on the policy wins of this current term. But what is done is done. As I’ve said, it’s not that Whyte and Seymour are bad/substandard candidates – quite the opposite. It’s simply that nobody has heard of them or knows who they are. That makes it very hard to sell them to the electorate only ten months out.

    I don’t know Whyte, but I can vouch for David Seymour as a smart and talented politician. I am behind him 100% to win Epsom, keep ACT in Parliament, and keep the Far Left out of government. I just hope that ACT have now not made it too hard for themselves to back him and get him in there.

    Vote: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  43. Yoza (1,926 comments) says:

    BlairM (2,223 comments) says:
    February 2nd, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    It’s a shame the Board didn’t go for the most obvious choice of Boscawen

    Maybe ‘the Board’ was told by its National party handlers that Boscawen was a non-starter. Does anyone know if Boscawen has a history of irritating the National party hierarchy?

    Perhaps the ACT party faithful should lobby for a more democratic selection process.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 21 You need to be logged in to vote
  44. MT_Tinman (3,322 comments) says:

    iMP (1,964 comments) says:
    February 2nd, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    At its best, ACT has only ever been a nuance of National; so why will people vote for this tired minnow with an undefined political branding of difference.

    Simply because not everyone will agree with your jaundiced view of a party returning to it’s original principles.

    At least, that’s why ACT will get my party vote.

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  45. The Silent Majority (89 comments) says:

    As an Epsom voter I canvassed quite a few of my fellow Epsom voters as to whether they would want a John Boscawen or a David Seymour. They all were very quick to say Boscawen. Obviously I dont know every single Epsom voter, but my gut feeling is that Epsom voters want their candidate to be someone of some standing, with credibility, a track record and private sector experience. John Boscawen would have been a shoe-in. Now alot of people will yet again have to hold their noses and vote Seymour because JK will ask us to. He may get in, but many Epsom voters will be less than happy.

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  46. MT_Tinman (3,322 comments) says:

    TSM, bullshit!

    Many moons ago a fellow called Winston Raymond Peters got the pollers to include his name on the list of prospective leaders given to those being polled.

    All of a sudden WRP was one of the chosen ones.

    Unfortunately he couldn’t work with Ruth and NZ got spud instead, who along with Sir Doug sold NZ down the creek.

    I suggest to you that the Epsom voters you canvassed picked Boscawen because he is the only one they/you know. If Seymour, Whyte campaign correctly they will attract the same voters (plus anyone with a brain) in Epsom.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  47. The Silent Majority (89 comments) says:

    “I suggest to you that the Epsom voters you canvassed picked Boscawen because he is the only one they/you know. ‘

    Actually, no.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  48. Shazzadude (531 comments) says:

    It’s somewhat noble that the ACT membership chose ideology over political survival.

    I guess the question now is firstly, whether or not there’s still sufficient motive for John Key to continue a deal with ACT in Epsom, and if so, will a cup of tea be enough, or would National have to go a step further and not stand a candidate?

    The only motive left I see for National continuing to keep ACT alive is if they think recovery and growth in 2017 and beyond is possible for ACT.

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  49. PaulL (5,449 comments) says:

    @Shazzadude: the motive for National is the same as it always has been – they need coalition partners. Given the accommodations they’ve made with Peter Dunne, who didn’t bring in anyone other than himself, and never guaranteed to work with National, I don’t see why they wouldn’t continue their accommodation with ACT.

    The main questions here are the same they’ve always been:
    1. Can ACT hold Epsom? That’s up to Seymour now, let’s see how he goes
    2. Can ACT build a profile that gets them more than just Epsom? That’s up to Whyte. They’ve done it before, and I don’t think that segment of the population have disappeared. They were not particularly enamoured of Banks (and, for some of us, of Brash either), and the vote dropped a lot. Perhaps someone closer to ACT roots will let that vote come back up to where it’s been before – a few percent.

    Either way, even with just Seymour in Epsom, that’s 1 MP more than the right have otherwise, and therefore 1 closer to a majority for the right. That’s reason enough that National will continue to do what they’ve always done.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  50. freedom101 (513 comments) says:

    John Boscawen has suffered as collateral damage in the Board’s total clean out of the ACT train wreck. Yet he, almost alone, was blameless in the shambles. Not only that, he has been very loyal, working tirelessly for the party, and has carried on while a lot of others stepped away. He has great integrity and has been gracious today. Well done John, and thank you.

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 25 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  51. wiseowl (979 comments) says:

    Having met John (not an Epsom salts person) and admiring what he has done in the past I say thank you John and I understand exactly your response.

    It is time that Liberalism was expunged from the National Party and I have never associated it with ACT.

    The Conservatives will be the winners.

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  52. Graeme2 (103 comments) says:

    I have voted ACT in the past and would consider doing so again if I was confident that they would retain Epsom. I am concerned though with comments made by Jamie Whyte that indicate he is likely to be soft on Maori policy. National and Labour between them have already taken us way to far down the path of seperatism.

    Vote: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  53. Yoza (1,926 comments) says:

    Shazzadude (455 comments) says:
    February 2nd, 2014 at 8:20 pm

    It’s somewhat noble that the ACT membership chose ideology over political survival.

    The membership? Did you not read the first paragraph of Farrar’s post? Here, let me refresh your memory:

    This morning the ACT Board met to choose the new leader and a candidate for Epsom.

    The only time the word ‘member’ gets a look in is when they discuss to what Boscawen has been demoted:

    He would no longer be fundraising for the party which he had done for four elections, but he would remain a member.

    “…the ACT membership chose…” pfffft! Like hell they do; the board decides and the membership sucks it up.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 9 You need to be logged in to vote
  54. Louis Houlbrooke (9 comments) says:

    Regardless of Boscawen’s qualities as a candidate, fielding him as leader would play far too comfortably into the narrative of ACT being an old, white, boring party indistinguishable from the Nats. Everyone would be claiming that Bosco was handpicked by Key. It’d be horrifically emasculating for any self-described ACT supporter.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  55. freedom101 (513 comments) says:

    Who is Jamie Whyte? Watch here:

    Jamie Whyte –
    http://youtu.be/VeVE5cUcvqc – part 1
    http://youtu.be/sQ5SWdbZpK0 – part 2

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  56. Jack5 (5,281 comments) says:

    Posters assume National has decided to stand aside for ACT in Epsom at the general election, which could be nine months away. Has National made such a decision; have I missed something?

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  57. dime (10,215 comments) says:

    gee, arent we lucky to have yoza here to tell us all about act.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  58. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    @martinh, Seymour has two degrees from UoA. Thus it is easy to see how can go from an engineering job to public policy.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  59. convicted radical (65 comments) says:

    Only Epsom has in interest in ACT, the rest of NZ has moved on…
    In case no one has noticed….

    Epsom; up to you!

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  60. wiseowl (979 comments) says:

    So Louis, you are another one of those who wants to pretend that white middle class males don’t exist and if they do lets have nothing to do with them.
    Sorry I’ve had a gutsful of that attitude and the rise of the Greens,the left and all those who want to detract from the fact that we can most likely thank white males for the great country we have built.
    Make my day, destroy it.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  61. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    lolz, wiseowl
    You are much wrong.
    Am dead cert Louis does not deny he exists.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  62. Samuel Smith (276 comments) says:

    Finally we can say goodnight to the Far Right.

    0.0% in another poll.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  63. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    Samuel, ACT isn’t “far right”.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 5 You need to be logged in to vote
  64. wiseowl (979 comments) says:

    ACT is far from ‘right’

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  65. MikeE (439 comments) says:

    I quit the party after the John Banks debacle, I’ll be renewing the membership as soon as my credit card arrives. Finally the party is returning to that of a party of principle.

    Vote: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  66. Anthony (768 comments) says:

    The Democrats in the US would probably be far right under Samuel Smith’s definition!

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  67. MikeE (439 comments) says:

    Also, the party faithful, who were the ones who got rodney into epsom originally, and who left in droves when Banks all but took over, are the same who will likely return now, and the very same who I’m guessing will campaign very actively to return a true liberal party to parliament.

    Conservatives can all bugger off to where they belong now.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  68. Yoza (1,926 comments) says:

    dime (8,266 comments) says:
    February 2nd, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    gee, arent we lucky to have yoza here to tell us all about act.

    Damn straight!
    Although, it doesn’t take much to see through such a flimsy facade.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  69. tas (655 comments) says:

    Here’s some video of Jamie Whyte:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeVE5cUcvqc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQ5SWdbZpK0

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=98QNrT6A4S8
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNQGM_OGJCE
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhVQHPUqImg

    He comes across as very intelligent, but academic. I don’t have a problem with that. But voters aren’t going to listen to him lecture. He needs to communicate his message via the media who give him 30 seconds max.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  70. gump (1,685 comments) says:

    @wiseowl

    “It is time that Liberalism was expunged from the National Party and I have never associated it with ACT.”

    —————————

    You have never associated Liberalism with ACT? Even though the ACT party is the most liberal party in our Parliament?

    You don’t seem like a very wise owl.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  71. Jack5 (5,281 comments) says:

    Tas (10.51) – thanks for the 10.51 link to the Jamie Whyte videos.

    My reaction is he’s smart,but I doubt he’s electable, unless he had an electorate comprised 90 per cent of commerce (and other right wing) students.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  72. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    Indeed, there are very few classical liberals in the country.

    FTFY

    There are probably more people who believe in alchemy or phlogiston theory, or any number of similarly obsolete theories. It’s like the 20th century never happened for you people. No modern economy can function on classical liberal principles. Get over it already.

    Vote: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 7 You need to be logged in to vote
  73. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    What is ACT if not a National party sock-puppet?

    That’s not fair, Yoza.

    ACT is a fringe party of madmen funded by a few wealthy cranks. It’s policies are the sorts of things that are popular on sites where comic books count as fine literature or sites devoted to games featuring dwarves and orcs or EVE online. It’s just another case of pimply young white men thinking they know how to fix the world because they lack the imagination to understand that not everyone is like them.

    ACT inhabits the same place in the political universe as former crazy ideas such as the social credit movement. The only difference is that many of the people who ACT appeals to are rich, so they can pay for airtime. If the Chemtrails people had that amount of money behind them, they would be in parliament.

    Once ACT ran out of experienced ex Labour politicians, they had to roll with the cranks and the dilettantes. John Banks was just the latest in a series of wildly inappropriate candidates fielded by the party. David Garrett failed the Ali G test, Rodders was out of his depth, the ladies were clearly unsuited for parliament (Muriel Newman being quite insane and Awatere a fraudster), and Brash was called “Mr Burns” behind his back. The rest were nobodies.

    Of all the people who’ve stood for ACT who weren’t ex Labour people, the only ones with any integrity or wit were Coddington and Franks, and both weren’t really suitable for politics.

    ACT’s history of candidates compares unfavourably with the Green Party, who are notorious for nominating weirdos, and even then, some of the Green weirdos turned out not to be bad at politics.

    Come on. Give it up. ACT is an embarrassment.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 12 You need to be logged in to vote
  74. RightNow (7,015 comments) says:

    Brash killed ACT. Turn off the life support and let it die with dignity.

    EDIT: “die with dignity” in this context is a euphemism for “FFS that’s enough already!”

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  75. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    Oh come on Rightnow, I don’t think the McGillicuddies stand for parliament any more, so there has to be at least one joke party that gets a miniscule vote to amuse the electorate. ACT is already there.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  76. Shazzadude (531 comments) says:

    PaulL: “@Shazzadude: the motive for National is the same as it always has been – they need coalition partners. Given the accommodations they’ve made with Peter Dunne, who didn’t bring in anyone other than himself, and never guaranteed to work with National, I don’t see why they wouldn’t continue their accommodation with ACT.”

    They need coalition partners capable of bringing in multiple members. ACT offer nothing to National as a sub 1%, 1 electorate party.

    Peter Dunne’s situation is somewhat different, as Labour would otherwise win Ohariu via a split vote if National weren’t helping him out.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  77. CharlieBrown (1,054 comments) says:

    Tom Jackson – do you honestly believe we have ever had a liberal economy? The modern western economy is as socialist as it is liberal (it is somewhere in between). There have been ups and downs and you can point your fingers to the liberal elements or the socialist elements. Some people say there is not enough regulation, others will say there is too much.

    But to say that classical liberterianism has failed is f’ing retarded. Take your head out of the box. The world is better and richer than it has ever been. The gap between the rich and the poor is just as prevalent as it has always been (unless you count the times when everyone was poor), and generally, the quality of life of the poor is definitely far better than it used to be.

    Liberals like me believe that it is the socialist and conservative aspects of modern life that are holding us back. We believe that removing (ie outlawing) free choice makes a bad society and economy, and in the same breath not letting people face the consequences of their actions makes for a bad society and economy. Thats why liberals believe that welfare, whether it be corporate or social should be avoided. People should be free to take whatever substance they see fit but if they hurt themselves doing it they should pay the cost of that, and if they hurt other people then they should face the law.

    I don’t expect ACT to have their policies all being liberal as they will get ignored, but it would be great to have a political party hold national to task with sound and reasoned arguments vs the drivel from the left that argue against them now.

    I will wait for ACT’s policies to be released then i will probably join up as a member.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  78. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    Jack5, that is why Whyte isn’t going to winning an electorate seat, but is the party leader for the party vote across the nation.

    They’ve got Seymour as their man to win an electorate instead.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  79. hj (7,167 comments) says:

    Vote Act. Vote for your local property developer (the one who tears down the old villa and replaces it with a concrete block.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  80. Chuck Bird (4,910 comments) says:

    Mr Seymour, 30, said he would attend the Boscawen public meeting on Thursday.

    He believed that Mr Boscawen “just enjoys having public meetings”.

    “It’s a lot of what he has done in the past and it is a bit of a glory-day thing for him.”

    David Seymour is going to have to learn that he is on duty 24/7. He makes a joke that offends someone even in a private group and it can be used against him. 30 is not too young to be an MP. I remember Mike Moore was 23 when he entered Parliament.

    When one is being interview by the media it is important to engage one’s brain. Seymour like most 30 year olds considers himself very mature. Part of being mature is knowing to show respect to someone much older and more experienced. If the above comment was one stupid remark from someone lacking experience it would not be such a problem. It is not just his lack of respect for someone much older and mature but his lack of loyalty that may cause future problems. It is not a one off.

    I remember well when he came to speak at a Waikato meeting. When he mentioned apologies he said David Garratt could not make it if that is what his name is today. This was a few days after Garratt made his speech in Parliament but before Rodney cut him loose. There were a couple of polite laughs. I politely mentioned to him privately after his speech that his “joke” about an ACT MP was not in good taste. Instead of saying it was an off the cuff remark and perhaps he should not have made it he made it clear he did not like being criticised.

    He obviously has not learned much in the last 3 years. I can understand John Boscawen being annoyed at a public comment saying that he is not telling the truth about his motive for putting his name forward. To make a public attack on the character of someone who had just stood down as party president shows very poor political judgement.

    If Boscawen had of stood in Epsom and Jamie Whyte stood as leader ACT may have got them both in. The chances of Seymour getting over 1.2% are very slim.

    This will probably be the last big mistake of the ACT board. If Boscawen got in Epsom he almost certainly would have been offered a ministerial position. There is no chance Seymour will be offered such a role.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  81. KimHannah (2 comments) says:

    I rejoined the party immediately upon hearing the news.

    The problem with John Boscawen was that he didn’t understand that policies do not win elections. He wasn’t interested in the massive rebranding exercise necessary to change perception of ACT into a liberal party that would actually appeal to a wider class of a liberal voters – he was interested in being John Key’s Epsom seat.

    So basically, more of the same crap that hasn’t worked for the last three years and was going to see ACT driven into the ground.

    I’d rather partake in one hell of an all or nothing effort behind Whyte and Seymour than another three years of wagging the National tail.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  82. Psycho Milt (2,427 comments) says:

    For Whyte to become an MP, he needs to lift ACT’s vote from 1.1% to 1.2%.

    According to the latest 3 News poll, he actually needs to lift ACT’s vote from 0.0% to 1.2% – a Herculean task, I should think.

    I’ll say one thing for Boscawen, though: the TV news can’t mention him without running footage of some scrawny wannabe rasta slapping a lamington on his head, and every time, far from making me laugh at the right-winger being made to look silly, it makes me marvel at his self-discipline – if the cunt had plastered a lamington on my head he’d have found that pacifism isn’t much assistance when someone’s punching you in the face.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  83. freethinker (677 comments) says:

    Dumping John Boscowen is an excellent decision of the ACT board following on the previous excellent decisions to bring in Brash and the coup de grace John Banks, John Boscowen was probably the only chance ACT had of surviving so the board of ACT have done the decent thing and ensured the party’s demise.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  84. RRM (10,099 comments) says:

    FRIENDZONED ;-)

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  85. MH (830 comments) says:

    Just what Hone and the Grins were fearing a see more candidate under a white controller for the Epsom Saltzers to get all peppery over.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  86. wrightingright (145 comments) says:

    Exactly KimHannah, if Boscawen had his way he’d be mailing a new essay on policy matters to voters everyday. Which would bore them to tears and turn them off ACT!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  87. Jack5 (5,281 comments) says:

    An interesting take on White and Seymour from the Gaynz.com web site:

    …the neoconservative blue-ants may have moved rightwards to Colin Craig and the Conservative Party. Both newcomers have a hard road ahead of them, given their previous lack of concrete New Zealand political experience. However, and more positively, they now have an unobstructed policy to renew ACT’s brand as an optimal classical liberal party, without any of the rancorous extremist neoconservatism, populism and social conservatism of Owen Jennings, Muriel Newman and Stephen Franks, or the oddball law and order populism of the disgraced David Garrett.

    I thought libertarians were the neo-conservatives. Perhaps libertarians are neo-anarchists.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  88. CharlieBrown (1,054 comments) says:

    Jack5 – you like the word neo don’t you. The left like to brand right wing as being conservative but in reality conservatism is a hard to define concept that pollutes the entire political spectrum. It pays to think of conservatism as a fear of change from established institutions.

    The greens try to say they are liberal but they only have a handful of liberal policies. Their policy on alcohol and and the welfare state is typically conservative. John Key is as conservative as you get, thats why f all has changed under him, most of Helen’s laws that National opposed are still in place, it is cause John Key is afraid change will rock the boat and get him voted out… coward.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  89. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Libertarians are not neoconservatives. Note that I’m not using the word in the US sense, where it now tends to refer to hawkish unilateral foreign policy initiatives against “rogue states” (which founder due to the fact that such authoritarian states have stunted civil societies). Instead, they combine support for an open and deregulated economy with social conservatism. From this perspective, National and the British Conservative Parties are mostly classical liberal, as is ACT.

    I’ve had friends who view themselves as classical liberals for the last twenty years. We may not agree on industrial relations or welfare policy, but they tend to agree with me that authoritarian religious social conservatives are every bit as bad for individual freedom as they understand it as Trotskyites, Maoists or neofascists. Unlike objectivist libertarians, they don’t romanticise the United States either. Fine with me. I wasn’t a great admirer of the late unlamented USSR before 1991 either.

    I fully accept that there can be leftoid social conservatives- like Jim Anderton when it came to drugs and sex work during the Clark administration, Manurewa MP Ross Robertson and current Auckland Mayor Len Brown. Not to mention Su’a William Sio.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  90. CharlieBrown (1,054 comments) says:

    ChardonnayGuy – I wouldn’t calssify National as anything near being liberal – they trully are as liberal as they are socialist. They believe the status quo of the current welfare states is good enough, this is evidenced by their stance on national super. They also believe in heavy regulation of alcohol, parenting and drug use which is another point showing they aren’t mostly classical liberal.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote