Armstrong on Foreshore & Seabed

John Armstrong writes:

National’s long-awaited prescription for healing that weeping political sore otherwise known as the foreshore and seabed should be grabbed with both hands by the Maori Party.

It will not get a better deal than the one outlined in the discussion document released by Attorney-General Chris Finlayson yesterday. National has stretched beyond the normal limits of its flexibility to come up with a lasting solution.

A stark assessment.

The arrival (finally) of Finlayson’s discussion document heralds Decision Day for the party, however. It can no longer cling to the foreshore and seabed like some kind of comfort blanket.

It is now or never – or, at least, not for a long time to come.

That means swallowing National’s intention to make the the foreshore and seabed a “public domain” which no one owns, something which sticks in the craw of Maori who insist ownership of the foreshore and seabed is their inalienable right.

That can be insisted upon, but in no way is that what the Court of Appeal ruled.

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