About that First Speech from Luxon as PM

Written By: - Date published: 2:47 pm, December 10th, 2023 - 58 comments
Categories: Christopher Luxon, Parliament, Politics - Tags: , , ,

Christopher Luxon’s Address in Reply Debate last Wednesday, in what was effectively his first speech as PM in the House, was a disgraceful display of arrogance, hypocrisy, and personal attacks. He showed no respect for the democratic process, the previous government, or the people of New Zealand. He also betrayed his own Christian values by lying, vilifying, and boasting. Below are some of the lowlights of his speech.

Luxon singled out Chris Hipkins, Grant Robertson, Ginny Andersen, and Ayesha Verrall for scathing criticism, accusing them of incompetence, wastefulness, and failure. He used mocking and demeaning language, such as calling Hipkins an “arsonist” and Andersen lacking self-reflection. Worse, even, Robertson and Verrall should have, or suffer rather, “survivors’ guilt”, according to Luxon. In my opinion, he’s trying to gaslight them using negative emotions, or he’s for real, as I don’t know how Luxon’s conscience and moral compass work. He showed no appreciation for the hard work and achievements of these MPs, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic nor for other major challenges that Labour had faced in the past six years, such as the Christchurch mosque shootings and the Whakaari/White Island eruption. Luxon’s mockery implied that they had been incompetent, dishonest, or uncaring. If the ABs come second in the RWC in 2027, will Luxon taint them with the same brush with survivors’ guilt? This is purely hypothetical, of course, since it’s unlikely that he’ll still be PM then.

Luxon’s personal and inflammatory remarks seem to contradict Christian values that he claims to uphold. He showed no humility, compassion, or honesty in his speech. He lied about Labour’s record, exaggerated his own achievements, and attacked his political opponents personally. He showed no concern for the poor, the vulnerable, or the marginalised. He’s a wealthy man only showing concern for the wealthy, the powerful, and the privileged. He only respects his own agenda, ideology, and ambition. Is Luxon showing his true colours, finally, or just another side of her personality? If so, why now? Or is this a cynical ploy to show some mongrel to impress or intimidate others who may be standing behind him sharpening their knives and leaking confidential documents?

In a continuation of the election campaign, Luxon blamed Labour for high inflation, interest rates, and food prices, while ignoring the global factors that have affected just about every country in the World. He promised to cut taxes, spending, and red tape, but offered no details on how he would fund public services, infrastructure, and renewable energy. Luxon’s comments were a clear attempt to distract from the real issues at hand and the fact that his Government has no ideas and no solutions. Least of all, Luxon’s rhetoric didn’t provide any indication how he would balance the competing demands and trade-offs involved.

Luxon claimed to be tough on crime and gangs, but ignored the fact that National has opposed many of the reforms that Labour has introduced to reduce reoffending, improve rehabilitation, and address the root causes of crime. He also failed to acknowledge the social and economic factors that contribute to youth offending and gang membership. Clearly, he’s not interested in facts or evidence.

Luxon is acting like a CEO who doesn’t show respect for the democratic process, the opposition, and the people of New Zealand. Luxon claimed to have a big mandate from voters to get New Zealand back on track, but his NACTF coalition government relies on the support of two smaller parties, ACT and NZ First, and clearly, they have different priorities and concerns. It remains to be seen how Luxon will balance the interests and demands of his coalition partners, regardless of how many times he exclaims ‘strong and stable’, and how he will deal with the scrutiny and criticism from the opposition parties. The opposition got 41.6% of the Party Vote (i.e. 1,186,291 votes) and Labour still is the second-largest party in Parliament with 34 seats, despite Luxon’s false claim that that New Zealanders had voted for anyone but Labour. I think that under his suit jacket Luxon is sweating so profusely that not even his men’s soap and body spray can hide it for much longer – the man’s not hot, he’s scared.

58 comments on “About that First Speech from Luxon as PM ”

  1. SPC 1

    The three headed confabulation hydra he leads is going to face resistance from Maori, workers and tenants and international criticism/scrutiny on Paris Accord issues.

    It will have the feel of an occupation regime of a gated community enured from the rest of the community, while posing as also concerned for the security of the homeowner middle class from underclass resentment.

    Not unlike most past Tory governments, but in a more income and wealth divided society. Thus the risk of another 1993 is quite high.

  2. CharlieB 2

    This claim by National, and almost every one else actually, that Labour lost by a landslide is entirely based on the 2020 result which is unprecedented under MMP and will likely never happen again.

    By comparison I believe this is one of Nationals lowest results in terms of percentage of actual votes.

    It's going to be interesting to see the first set of post election polling to see how much buyers remorse has set in and where Luxon sits in the spectrum of preferred PM.

    A rather telling aspect of Luxon's speech was him declaring NZ was under new management.. That about sums him up for me. I guess you can take the CEO out of the board room, but you can never take the board room mentality out of the CEO.

    It was also interesting to see that neither Luton or Willis seem to have moved on and a lot of the rhetoric was along the same lines as when they were in opposition.

    I think that what's happening now is a continuation of the undermining of the left, and particularly labour, and positioning them as the problem while also positioning them selves as the solution, the end game being re-election in 2026.

    My hope is that general NZ'rs will see Luxon, Willis and Bishop for the vacuous lumps they actually are and we'll see a swing the other way and a possible variation on a Lab/Grn/TPM government at that election. I'm also guessing National can see that writing on the wall and that's why most of their vitriol is aimed at Labour knowing a better outcome for national in 2026 would be a coalition with the Greens with National under new management..

    • Robert Guyton 2.1

      "vacuous lumps"

      Memorable!

    • Ghostwhowalks 2.2

      You are right . Since MMP only in 1996 when National was lower with 33% and formed a coalition government with NZF

    • SPC 2.3

      It appears to be the lowest support level for the National Party coming into government. But at 38% (46% in 2005), still higher than Labour 37% in 2017 (38.74% in 1999).

      • DS 2.3.1

        They got 35% in 1993 and 34% in 1996.

        • SPC 2.3.1.1

          National received 47.8% of votes coming into government in 1990 and left office after only getting 30.5% in 1999.

          Labour got 35% in losing in 1990. 34% in losing in 2008 and 27% in losing 2023 (albeit with the L/G/TPM vote only down to 41% from 44% in 2017).

  3. ianmac 3

    That first speech of Luxon's was just mean spirited. I cannot remember any Leader spouting in the House such a miserable diatribe picking out members of the Opposition. Unforgivable.

    There are many NAct NZF members who, although politically opposed, get on well with, are friendly with Lab MPs and must cringe at the "vacuousness lumpishness" of the Leader that fronts them. If not shame on them.

    • taxicab 3.1

      The headline comment about Hipkins being an arsonist at the scene of his crime was word for word stolen from Seymour and directed at Peters during a pre-election debate .

  4. Ffloyd 4

    Luxon is a bully, pure and simple. Super proud of himself for writing all his own speeches. He’s the only one who is. How come he was allowed to get away with such a personal attack on Chris H and the others? Where was Big G. Asleep?!😴

  5. Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaketh

    And many other biblical injunctions about watching your words. Note the contrast with Jacinda's first speech where she spoke of her intentions to fight climate change and child poverty and make NZ a better place for everyone.

  6. Rolling-on-Gravel 6

    I pray that he'll sentence the National Party & ACT & NZF to an one term government.

    The cost otherwise really is too high. And it's really getting too high already what with the floated in the ACT-NAT coalition agreement with policies like selected doctors with filling out a medical certificate system which is already seen to cause deaths of people in the UK by the DWP (the equivalent of our MSD) and electronic management of people on the benefit's bank accounts which likely will not account for any extenuating circumstances, which brings us again back to deaths caused with the equivalent in the UK.

    It's not just that, they're bringing "dignity" back to landlords by giving them no cause evictions, and so on. 90 days trial for employers to look at employees then they are feeling free to let them for any reason. The 3 strikes. The drumbeats for austerity by Nicola Willis.

    And we are considering 4 years of this? 4 years really are too long. I do not want a locked-in country for National like the English for the Tories with their 5 years terms.

    Keep it 3 years until we find a solution that will not reward crappy parties or reward them as little as possible.

    And that starts with our political & media cultures.

    We have to do better than this.

  7. [deleted]

    [Please respond to the Mod notes for you before you continue to comment, thanks. You’ve got until tonight, as I already told you – Incognito]

  8. Who has reported or written on Luxon's "Speech" (diatribe)? I now call him Klutz. He is an oaf.

    Talking about people instead of the topic indicates his paucity of ideas.

    He fails to grasp he is meant to govern for all, not just the 1 to 5%.

    That will be his downfall, as he fails to grow into the role. He is still "in opposition".

  9. adam 9

    So the economy wreaked by the end of January?

    With no external institution or power to but breaks on this train wreak of a PM, we could wake up one morning soon, with no functioning economy.

    I'm starting to suspect the PM is a Christian Nationalist. Or at the very least an sinful tool, who believes in the herecy of prosperity theology.

    • SPC 9.1

      His first speech to parliament is indicative of this combination – incentivise doing well and "manage" the underclass via interventions.

  10. Obtrectator 10

    What better could seriously have been expected from someone who's been in the House only three years before being elevated to the top job? The man’s political inexperience is plain for all to see. It’s true SmirKey was another Johnnie-come-early, but at least he’d had two terms under his belt.

  11. Descendant Of Smith 11

    "He also betrayed his own Christian values by lying"

    Given that Christianity is built upon a lie i.e. that god exists, I'm not sure how christian values can be betrayed by lying.

    This of course also depends on what brand of Christianity that you aspire too as there are plenty of other lies such as the rapture, that prayers and thoughts do anything apart from maybe some personal piece of mind, …..

    • SPC 11.1

      Christianity is based on a faith that God exists (as per maker of creation in two forms, mortal and otherwise). That is based on a universe in which creation has dominion over something it did not make. And can leave for their descendants to inherit in a better or worse state than they were born into. In that it is not unique (though others conceive God as related that which exists ie the universe and has consciousness related to – being existent). One could go on.

      It is what humans claim about God where the lies come in. Christians are other humans and party politics is about narrative.

      • Descendant Of Smith 11.1.1

        Christianity is based on a faith lie that God exists. All religion is based on a lie. Religious tolerance is to try and stop different religions from butting heads and expressing bigotry.

        I'm just saying that religion and lies go hand in hand. I don't see any contradiction at all between religion and lying.

        • Populuxe1 11.1.1.1

          Do you feel better now?

          • Descendant Of Smith 11.1.1.1.1

            Yep cause sometimes it is good to remind ourselves that the enlightenment occurred and much of the world is currently regressively religious.

            It is quite unreasonable to equate religion with truthfulness. Didn't realise that we were not allowed to challenge such notions.

            • Populuxe1 11.1.1.1.1.1

              It is also quite unreasonable to equate the Enlightment with virtue, not least because they were a bunch of deists who spent far too much time trying to justify European superiority and imperialism.
              Potayto, potahto

              • SPC

                Belief in God based on reason rather than revelation or the teaching of any specific religion is known as deism.

                It is also quite unreasonable to equate the Enlightment with virtue, not least because they were a bunch of deists who spent far too much time trying to justify European superiority and imperialism.

                Typical Christian slandering deists for having faith, but not in Christian revelation. Then judging them for inheriting/emerging in a culture built on religious and cultural supremacism and imperialism.

                This is why the association with lying comes up. Partisan nationalism, based on race and cultural inheritance, justified by faith in their own special salvation.

                Thus the John Howard attitude on One Voice and the resistance here to co-governance arrangements and indigenous rights under UNDRIP.

                • Populuxe1

                  Unbunch your panties, sweetheart, I most certainly ain't no Christian. And the average Enlightenment philosopher weren't no Atheist by modern definitions.
                  Deist Atheist.
                  And the main resistance to UNDRIP in Aotearoa is that several significant parts of it aren't compatible with settled law and established compensation processes like the Waitangi Tribunal.

                  • SPC

                    And the main resistance to UNDRIP in Aotearoa is that several significant parts of it aren't compatible with settled law and established compensation processes like the Waitangi Tribunal.

                    Main resistance or more credible critics? Those on side with settled law and established processes were the ones going ahead with UNDRIP assessment and planning for implementation.

                    The opposition to UNDRIP was related to the majoritarian (read settler descendants decides) narrative.

                  • SPC

                    I most certainly ain't no Christian

                    Then why the stupid put down of the enlightenment then? For growing society from religious supremacism and (the wars of the 16th and 17th C) and received tradition, via science and reason?

                    And the average Enlightenment philosopher weren't no Atheist by modern definitions.
                    Deist Atheist.

                    surprise… No one has ever claimed otherwise, not here, nor anywhere else.

                    And they were not the source of European supremacism and imperialism. More the concept of universal values.

                    The Enlightenment included a range of ideas centered on the value of human happiness, the pursuit of knowledge obtained by means of reason and the evidence of the senses, and ideals such as natural law, liberty, progress, toleration, fraternity, constitutional government, and separation of church and state.

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_Enlightenment

                    Then came the USA.

                    The Enlightenment was characterized by its universalism, the affirmation of universal principles in human affairs, and a cosmopolitan vision of mankind. This universalism is manifestly evident in the Declaration of Independence, and hence in our origin as a national state.

                    In 1976, reason allowed an assessment of their 200 year old tradition.

                    The Bicentennial setting directs us to look to the past, and whatever our present political failings, we can do this with pride and joy.

                    National strength, it seems to me, resides as much in principle and vision, as in power. Moreover, power when misused is destructive, and it may be more destructive of the user than the victim. In fact, the more powerful a nation, the greater the danger that abuse of power, both in internal and external affairs, may be self-destructive.

                    https://www.vqronline.org/essay/universalism-thought-founding-fathers

            • Drowsy M. Kram 11.1.1.1.1.2

              It is quite unreasonable to equate religion with truthfulness.

              Even nontheist religion? Eight billion perceived realities = lots of options!

              I'm a confirmed atheist, yet some tenets of various religions are sound, imho.

              • Descendant Of Smith

                "yet some tenets of various religions are sound"

                Not disputing that at all. Many of our values and customs have derived from a range of religions. It is also quite evident that human brains react to religious/spiritual/emotional stimuli. You can't beat evolution.

                It is the notion that ideals such as truthfulness are religious in nature that I question and that whether in an age where we know more about how the world works through science that believing in any god can be truthful.

                That being said I am aware of Leviticus 19:11 "You shall not steal, nor deal falsely, nor lie to one another". Where I see the line of truthfulness is where I differ.

                Owning rental properties, as Luxon does, is an area that has different views that people far more learned than I have thought about and is another interesting area. Kevin Nye has some interesting perspectives on this.

                His book "Grace Can Lead Us Home: A Christian Call to End Homelessness" is a good read as well.

                https://podcasts.apple.com/nz/podcast/a-call-to-end-homelessness-kevin-nye/id1537732624?i=1000555600878

        • SPC 11.1.1.2

          Your claim that there is no God is a form of faith.

          The difference between yours and others, is that they build a religious narrative about God that is mutually contradictory indicating some, or all of it, are lies. And as to claims of authority to their narratives – in that they have stolen the authority of God to declare God.

          Thus legitimate questions about religion and truth telling.Largely because it becomes a form of nationalism (as per believer and unbeliever).

    • roblogic 11.2

      Merry Christmas – Peace on Earth, and good will to all mankind.

      The message of Jesus is many things, but the destructive and selfish shit Luxon is doing is not one of them.

    • Incognito 11.3

      I should have seen it coming that some would divert from the OP to a discussion about Christianity and religion in general, which is a fruitful as discussing sexual preferences or favourite flavour of ice cream. I’m still mulling whether to move this whole thread to OM or not.

      The point is, in the context of this Post, that Luxon wheels in & out his self-proclaimed core personal values on a whim and for political expediency. To me, this shows a lack of integrity and honesty and his lying, for example, shows his moral failure. It is and never was, for me, about his Christian faith – good for him – but about Luxon being inconsistent in word & deed. This makes him an intrinsically weak & untrustworthy leader or PM.

  12. Luxon said he was a Christian, thereby claiming the high moral ground, however his actions and words have not matched the rhetoric.surprise

    • Incognito 12.1

      I find it hard to reconcile this latest speech with Luxon’s Maiden Speech, which he gave only two and a half years ago. I can still recognise some of the CEO Luxon but nothing much of the Christian Luxon.

      https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/hansard-debates/rhr/document/HansS_20210324_053340000/luxon-christopher-mallard-trevor

      Success and money clearly don’t make for a better person, if his speeches and policies are anything to go by.

      • SPC 12.1.1

        Enzed Inc 2023-2026 is not likely to be part of any Climate Leaders Coalition and there will be doubts about that gender and rainbow tick as well. And no indigenous peoples tick for the three headed hydra rconfabulation either

        We are underpowered because our economy for the last 30 years has been suffering a productivity disease. Economic growth has largely been driven by having more people in the country and more people working harder. We need to work smarter, not harder. We can do this, and we can do it by building and unleashing genuinely world-class export businesses, step-changing education and labour skills, and delivering infrastructure better. Improving productivity is the single biggest thing that we can do to raise our collective standard of living.

        And yet it has been Labour that has been the more focused on R and D tax credits and apprenticeships.

        He seems to have missed (then and now) the relationship between the tax system and a focus on wealth generation by investment/speculation in property ownership – not productivity.

        Productivity gains are made with lower business borrowing costs and more venture capital.

        Let me also talk briefly about infrastructure, which is at a crisis point. The issues are multigenerational and systemic. We need to reset and develop a new model to power the country into the 2040s, rather than continuing to "band-aid and number eight wire" our current system. Infrastructure is not just about dams and transmission lines and highways; it's about nation-building. It's about how we see our future, and we need an overarching vision. We need new funding and financing mechanisms, upgraded legislation, and better project management and execution. Investing in world-class infrastructure that effectively connects, transports, and develops information and ideas, people, and products is critical to New Zealand's creation of wealth and the distribution of poverty.

        Lowering the costs of getting things done would help. We do need new funding and financing mechanisms. Here improved tax revenues (windfall profits taxation, stamp duty on homes over $2M and CGT and estate taxation in the form of a wealth tax) play their part.

        I believe in tackling inequality and working hard to find that balance between encouraging hard work and innovation while always ensuring there is social mobility and a safety net. Every New Zealander who cares about other New Zealanders knows what that means. No matter your situation, I believe in a New Zealand that backs Kiwis to work hard, to convert opportunities, and to create prosperity for themselves, their families, their communities, and our country, because that is how we will make our country stronger. But I also believe that Governments must make powerful and targeted interventions on behalf of those with the most complex and challenged lives. With the right resources at the right time in the right place, the State can help people make positive and sustained changes that enable them to rise up and to realise their own potential.

        This might speak to an investment approach, or it might be an ambulance system.

      • observer 12.1.2

        That speech was a warning sign. How Luxon sees himself.

        William Wilberforce. Kate Sheppard. Martin Luther King. And … Christopher Luxon.

        Heroes of history. One man's version of history, at least. (And one man's at most).

  13. Ghostwhowalks 13

    Good points . But how to you find "opposition" got 41% of the party vote ?

    [ The opposition got 41.6% of the Party Vote (i.e. 1,186,291 votes) ]

    Actual finals are 1,085,851 votes for National or 38.08%

    https://archive.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2023/

    Nationals 2023 party vote is is the 2nd lowest MMP National party in government election result ( 1996 33% for Bolger )

    If Luxon spoke about Ginny Anderson in the speech , shes a Wellington MP, I reckon its a good sign it was written for him by Andersons opponent Chris Bishop- as its typical of his type of comments

    • SPC 13.1

      1993 – 35%. 2002 – 21%. 4th.

      • Ghostwhowalks 13.1.1

        When national was "in government." and under MMP

        • SPC 13.1.1.1

          Then it becomes National was not in government at the 2023 election.

          • Ghostwhowalks 13.1.1.1.1

            Vote at at election time when they then become government. thats the way it works after each election A child can understand what it means

            • SPC 13.1.1.1.1.1

              An election when in government and an election after which they later came into government do not have the same meaning.

              And thus National was not in government in 1996 under MMP, but returned to government in the first MMP election.

    • Incognito 13.2

      Here’s how I got my figures:

      Opposition (41.59%) = LAB (26.91%) + GP (11.60%) + TPM (3.08%)

      Opposition (1,186,291) = LAB (767,540) + GP (330,907) + TPM (87,844)

      If that’s not your question, please re-phrase it.

      • Ghostwhowalks 13.2.1

        Thanks , for some reason I read it as 'the opposition to
        Labour', ie National and its allies.

  14. Thinker 14
    1. I was brought up to understand that there are two types of Christian – one sees being a Christian as a responsibility to others. A "good Samaritan/noblesse oblige", if you like.

    The other sort, which appear to be quite prevalent these days, is the Christian who believes in God's forgiveness of sins and that Proverbs 10:22 entitles (nay, exhorts) Christians to be rich. Combine the two and it's a ticket to beggar thy neighbour. That's a simplification of how to reconcile one's selfish behaviour with being a good Christian, but I think it's on the right track, for those who fancy to mimic the approach.

    Many of us will recall having been cut-off in traffic by a car with the bumper sticker “Christians aren’t perfect – just forgiven” on the back!

    1. Re: put-down comments in speeches. I was also brought up to understand that snuffing out someone else's candle doesn't make yours burn any brighter. Shame some people believe that.

    Based on life experience and a bit of reading of history, I think people have one or two motives for put-downs as described above. The first is envy, the second is fear of one’s own inadequacy. IMHO, either or both can motivate people to make personal character attacks. Wear it like a badge, Hipkins, et al!

  15. John 15

    The speech was fine.

  16. Mike the Lefty 16

    Frankly I think it's all gone to his head.

    Today, New Zealand, tomorrow the world!

    Once his coalition partners get over the euphoria of victory they will start to try and undermine each other and Luxon will realise there is no honour amongst thieves.

  17. Ghostwhowalks 17

    Luxon got worse in Question time in Reponse to a Question about Gaza ceasefire

    "

    Rt Hon Chris Hipkins: So is it the Government's position that New Zealand should only call for a ceasefire once it's already happened?

    Rt Hon CHRISTOPHER LUXON: No, I've been very clear: we would like to see a ceasefire, but it requires both parties to actually make that a sustainable action and ceasefire.

    Ad nauseam …

    Rt Hon CHRISTOPHER LUXON: Look, as I've said before, we would like to see an enduring, sustainable ceasefire. Yeah, we would all like to see that in this country, but the reality is, for a sustainable ceasefire to take place, you need both parties to agree to it.

    We know hes not a conviction politician but only cares about the process of politics….or after the process has occurred he can support an aspiration…supposedly
    https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/hansard-debates/rhr/combined/HansD_20231207_20231207

    • Thinker 17.1

      We know, from Luxon's impromptu press conference, that he admits to having difficulty expressing himself, but I'm a bit nonplussed about your quote, and I checked out the link.

      Hipkins asked if the government would only call for a ceasefire after it had happened. Luxon's response was No, but then he said he was waiting for both sides to agree to the conditions before calling for it. Doesn't that make Hipkins' point a truism?

      • georgecom 17.1.1

        Imagine if Luxon was the US President post pearl harbour. I will ask congress to declare war on Japan once both sides declare war.

        • Thinker 17.1.1.1

          Could've saved a lot of lives, but Americans would've been driving Toyotas decades earlier and bikers would've been riding around on Honda 50s.

  18. Tiger Mountain 18

    Knob Head is surely the weakest PM this country has elected. His “Upper Room” christian group essentially craps on the bottom 50% from a great height–it is indeed ‘Luxury Luxon’ all the way. He fits the Nats because they shovel socially produced wealth upstairs.

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