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 Jim McLay today revealed more details around Plan B to deal with the economic caused by Sir Robert Muldoon 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.

Diplomatic Appointments

March 11th, 2009 at 2:19 pm by David Farrar

Trans-Tasman has just put out a special newsletter with some exclusive news:

The Trans-Tasman Political Letter reports Jim McLay will be NZ’s permanent representative to the UN in New York. McLay will take up the post when the present ambassador Rosemary Banks finishes her term in May.

This is a very interesting move. Normally political appointments are made as Ambassadors to countries.I would not call them a cruisy job because they do have work to do, but it is a pleasant job shall we say.

The permanent rep to the UN is a very full on busy role. None of the perks of being an Ambassador – you’re stuck in UN meetings all day.

This implies that the Government wants a rep who can display political leadership within the UN – suggesting that maybe the Government intends to get involved with efforts to reform the UN.

Hopefully this may mean the Government will withdraw NZ’s bid to be elected to the discredited Human Rights Council.

Foreign Minister McCully has indicated he wants the current professional diplomats in Washington (Roy Ferguson) and in London (Derek Leask) to serve out their terms.

So no political appointments there for now.

Interviews to find a successor for retiring MFAT CEO Simon Murdoch will begin in Wellington next week.

The name most people put forward is the DPMC CEO Maarten Weavers.

Meanwhile, Trans-Tasman says former PM Helen Clark is on the three-person short-list for the post of director of the UNDP. The Govt has been seeking international support for her appointment and is understood to have gained the support of Korea, which could be influential on the thinking of the current UN Secretary-General. Clark had a one-on-one meeting with the Korean president Lee Myung-Bak in Auckland.

The Secretary-General is from Korea, so that is significant.