Build a bridge and get over it

Written By: - Date published: 2:32 pm, November 7th, 2017 - 227 comments
Categories: flip-flop, national, Parliament - Tags: , ,

It’s now Simon Bridges’ turn to be the one whining in the media about the new government, complaining that Labour is planning to go through with plans he himself praised in Parliament to decrease the presence of larger parties in Select Committees, a move that was unanimously agreed to earlier by all parties.

Clearly he hasn’t gotten the memo on new talking points, however, as he does concede in his outraged flip-flop that the new government are “using [their] majority to make the opposition less effective.” It’s nice to see National MPs finally acknowledging that a majority of New Zealanders who voted did so for our new government, even if it does come with a rather pathetic whining tone.

Bridges also wins an award for the best ironic comment since Donald Trump forgetting when it was he claimed to have an excellent memory, by claiming that “nobody envisioned the current situation, where the biggest party by far is in opposition,” when it is in fact one that National has previously whined about when they thought Clark’s Labour Party would fail to outpoll them back in the day. I for one also envisioned it more recently every time I decided to volunteer for campaign activities to unseat English’s previous lot as the government, as I knew we weren’t going to approach a situation where Labour was the biggest party in Parliament this election, and I would suspect there are many other readers of The Standard who contemplated that scenario too, if they were watching the polling. Certainly more than 50% of voters seemed positively inclined to the idea, too. He must carry around a distinct lack of awareness with him like some sort of isolation bubble, because straight-man lines this good just don’t write themselves without some sort of powerful denial going on.

Select Committees are an important and influential part of our process, where the Government gets its feedback on changes from the community, and recommends adjustments to bills based on it, but the important part is actually having a representative there to listen to good ideas that may have come from your corner or elsewhere that might otherwise have been missed, not actually to be able to bully your way through to an outcome by dint of numbers, and using them to genuinely obstruct business rather than to improve the quality of bills was never intended.

Chris Hipkins is absolutely correct to charge ahead with the changes to eliminate roughly 24 spaces on select committees, which would leave some MPs without any to attend, although government backbenchers would all still have roles due to cabinet members traditionally not sitting on select committees. Those members can instead focus on asking questions in question time, giving speeches in the house, or, shock horror, actually talking to their constituents and attending community events to listen or participate, and can swap in with others from time to time to get the necessary experience to move up in their party if necessary. National had previously threatened to abuse its size on select committees to obstruct the business of Parliament with no other justification than simply because they had lost, so despite their claims of moral high ground about the importance of opposition, any negative side-effects to them are thoroughly earned, and can be considered if and when National prove they are willing to function as a loyal opposition, that allows New Zealand’s legitimate government to operate, even if they disagree with how. They will still have a fair voice in matters, but parliamentary moves to obstruct business should be saved for bills that are genuinely disastrous, and where the public is actually against them. National, of course, will most likely get no such chances where it actually opposes such legislation, as the only decision looming with any prospect of popular revolt is Labour’s continued flirtation with signing a TPP without significant progress on a better way around the ISDS issue, and National supports TPP11 regardless of public opinion.

If National are such a strong opposition, I’m sure they’ll find a way to cope, but it seems like by “strong opposition” they mostly just meant “we’ll keep trying to abuse process and hope the new Government doesn’t find a way to cut us off.” Bridges needs to realize that we live in New Zealand, not the United States, and you can’t try to walk all over your political opponents and then complain that they retaliated and put you back in your place. Welcome back to opposition.

Update: During the swearing in of the new Speaker, absences of a number of Government members temporarily gave National a majority of votes due to those members not having been sworn in. A deal was struck that National would not oppose Trevor Mallard as speaker, but Labour would add another twelve select committee slots- enough for all of National’s backbenchers to get on select committees- in exchange for their not nominating an opposing candidate for Speaker. This may allow National to obstruct the new government’s business in select committees, however by setting the tone in a more collegial manner, may also have convinced the opposition that it is no longer necessary to do so. I await with interest the first select committee hearings so we can all see which it’s going to be.

Update 2: Turns out National didn’t have a majority after all: 58 government MPs were sworn in at the time, and 56 opposition MPs. However, by carefully phrasing their comments in the house, National were able to imply they might have a temporary majority without actually lying, and have embarrassed the new government on its very first day in Parliament.

 

227 comments on “Build a bridge and get over it”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    So National could have supported Mallard, and let-pass the opportunity to force a deal over the select committees?
    Of course the could have. Instead, they chose the wheeler-dealer way – wonder why???

    • Puckish Rogue 1.1

      Would Labour have let pass over the select committee if National hadn’t have forced their hand?

      Sorry I mean if Labour hadn’t of gifted the opportunity to National

    • Matthew Whitehead 1.2

      National knew that Labour would eventually have the numbers to change the speaker, so they would only make a temporary gain and embarrass the government by electing their own candidate in the interim. By making a deal around the select committee numbers, they secured a permanent gain instead, and Labour gets to avoid the embarassment and look magnanimous and reasonable.

      • Puckish Rogue 1.2.1

        1-0 to National and a good lesson for Labour

      • Freddo 1.2.2

        Surely you mean Labour get to look like absolute fools Matthew? I don’t often agree with the Herald but their current headline “National makes Government look like fools as it blackmails Labour for Speaker vote”, has it dead right in my opinion.

        I despair. How on earth do Labour think they can achieve the things the people have finally put them there to do if they are going to perform this incompetently.

        • Matthew Whitehead 1.2.2.1

          Yeah, sorry, at first the coverage assumed National really did have the numbers. It took a fair amount of combing over it to reveal they didn’t, and I wasn’t watching proceedings live, I had to quickly catch up to update this post for today’s events and didn’t take time to confirm the numbers myself.

          • Tanz 1.2.2.1.1

            The people didn’t put them there, Winston Peters did. Very funny first day, bring it on. Go National, formidable already! Nats won the election, Labour won the auction.

            • red-blooded 1.2.2.1.1.1

              If National won the election they’d have their own speaker cos they’d be the government. Adjust your thinking to the realities of MMP.

    • Sabine 1.3

      to set the tone for the future.
      have a seat and get some popcorn.

    • John 1.4

      How does that stunt National pulled in the house today fix the poverty levels or homelessness????

      • Michael 1.4.1

        It doesn’t but it makes the Government looks as if it isn’t able to “fix the poverty levels or homelessness” either, if it can’t even make sure it’s got the numbers in the House.

    • Zack Brando 1.5

      Jacinda has been working hard and needs a brake. The Xmas period will no doubt revive her …

      Firstly, I feel Malcolm Turnbull has done a number on her with his pseudo, sycophant rhetoric wrapped in demeaning undertones design to aggrandize himself (Malcolm Turnbull) and Australia … while belittling New Zealand.

      Let’s not forget Australia has a huge housing bubble, tent cities and a large hidden underclass, not to mention questionable forgiven policies.

      Secondly, the ‘Speaker of the House’ fiasco was plain embarrassing and I’d be whipping the whips. Jacinda obviously needs some down time and perhaps a couple of quarter ponder combos.

      Saying that, she is the leader and the time has come for her to walk in that authority and demand her caucus are more prepared. She’s good at delegating but needs to convey a sense of strong expectations. This fiasco was uninspiring for new MP’s.

  2. Enough is Enough 2

    I think Simon built the bridge in Parliament today.

    The smarmy Tory.

    • Matthew Whitehead 2.1

      We’ll wait and see if he’s actually done that, or simply got a concession to obstructing select committee business. I’m hoping it’s the former and that this is an end to the various whinging complaints of the opposition, especially as Mallard has promised to set a tone as Speaker more akin to that of Lockwood Smith (ie. relatively impartial, and with regard to the rights of the public and the opposition more than as a shield for the Government) than of his most recent predecessor.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 2.1.1

        It’s the latter. The National Party thinks it can win in 2020 using Tea Party tactics. Can’t see it myself, but hey!

        • Matthew Whitehead 2.1.1.1

          I’m inclined to believe that the Nats are aiming to be obstructionists, too. It’s in their nature, but I’m happy to wait and see.

    • tracey 2.2

      Pity he didnt build the 10 promised up north with as much haste

  3. Bondy 3

    Isn’t Hopkins Minister of Ed?
    Maybe needs to go to a Charter School & learn to count.
    How embarrassing for Jacinta on her big day.

    • Trey 3.1

      Hipkins and Jacinda. Maybe you need to go to a State School and learn how to spell

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.2

      How embarrassing

      There are worse ways to be “bloodied”. Now the Prime Minister has seen Double Dipton’s tactics as well as his hand.

      • Bondy 3.2.1

        Nice spin – “look, a squirrel over there…”
        Face it, your semi-legitimate heroes had their respective arses handed to them on a plate. Did you see the “PM” try and bullshit her way out of it?
        These clowns will be the laughing stock at any international gathering they’ve been given forged tickets to.
        No doubt a dressing down by Whinney is on the cards.

        • 3stepstotheright 3.2.1.1

          Yes, I await with interest BLip’s new list on Jacinda’s lies.

          • Anne 3.2.1.1.1

            And I await with bated breath for your inevitable demise on this site.

            Ignore this hysterical troll folks. Stop feeding it!

            • Bondy 3.2.1.1.1.1

              Translation: This truth makes me feel uncomfortable, please someone make it go away.

            • NewsFlash 3.2.1.1.1.2

              Anne

              The nut jobs are out in force over Nats politicking, you would almost think that they think they’ve just won the election again, most are still furious that their SCREWED up party FAILED, it’ll be a long time before they get another opportunity.

              Also, Peters not being there as he was organizing writs to be served to the top Nats and journo’s

              • Tuppence Shrewsbury

                It’s not really politicking, it’s something not seen in parliament for a long time. A strong opposition. This is good for democracy, why should the opposition delver just roll over and accept the governments position?

                • mpledger

                  They are all meant to be acting for the benefit of NZ’s citizens, not to obstruct each other in petty power games.

                  But if National want to play that game, I don’t think it’s going to win them many points with ordinary citizens who want NZ to be a better place for them and their children.

  4. veutoviper 4

    Matthew, your update in fact needs updating.Labour believed Nat’s spin that the opposition had the numbers when in fact they did not.

    Fine, there were five Labour, NZF and Green members absent (Parker, Peters, Poto Williams, Gareth Hughes and Priyanca Radhakrishanan). But David Carter was also absent on the National side.

    This gave actual numbers of 58 on the Government side, and 57 on the National/Act side. Lots of discussion/links on Open Mike.

    • Cinny 4.1

      Irony that Carter was absent.

    • Matthew Whitehead 4.2

      You mean 56, if David Carter was absent? (the government has 63 MPs, and we have a 120-seat Parliament, so the opposition should max out at 57) It could also have been that some MPs were on the grounds but hadn’t been sworn in and weren’t present to be sworn in- we would probably have to go over the video to check relative numbers.

      I can’t actually edit my posts once they’re up atm, as I’m just a contributor, not an author. This piece was originally written yesterday, well before Parliament sat.

      • veutoviper 4.2.1

        Yes, 56 not 57 – but I am not going to beat myself up as the pedant of all time, Graeme Edgeler originally counted it as 55!

        I watched it live – and had the full lists of MPs alongside and was surprised at the missed call ups, but did not really count them at the time.

  5. Cinny 5

    Do MP’s get additional $ for each select committee they are on please?

    • McFlock 5.1

      Well, they were really keen for everyone to have a committee…

      Apparently not, unless they chair or deputy-chair the committee.

      I guess they just want the CV rights.

    • Matthew Whitehead 5.2

      Nah, for National it’s about influence on the proceedings of the select committees, and potentially being able to obstruct business in a few key areas where they as opposition get additional slots.

      • tracey 5.2.1

        Isnt there a danger this could backfire insofar as Nats deliberately obstruct and slow progress and be seen as destructive sore losers? Time will tell I guess.

        • SpaceMonkey 5.2.1.1

          Isn’t that exactly what they’ve said they’re going to do?

          • tracey 5.2.1.1.1

            Yes. But I am using the words that better describe what they intend and suggested a consequence.

            I am confused as to how Nats have a place for all backbenchers on select committees when there are 120 MPs but only 108 SC positions?

            • Matthew Whitehead 5.2.1.1.1.1

              Cabinet ministers tend not to sit on relevant select committees, and party leaders don’t always sit on them, either, meaning that the government doesn’t actually want every govt MP on a select committee. 108 is enough to give every National member who wants one a full-time SC place.

      • Wayne 5.2.2

        The additional slots don’t change proportionality. As the Select Committee slots are increased they are allocated on a proportional basis.
        It is quite important for the Opposition to have all their MP’s on Select Committes. It is one of main roles for Opposition MP’s so missing out would be a real blow for the MP’s who missed out.

        • red-blooded 5.2.2.1

          So why did your party originally decide to cut the numbers then, Wayne? Presumably it was assuming that this issue would affect others, not them, but they must have known that they wouldn’t rule for ever. And the “no one predicted” line doesn’t cut it in a system that has always relied on coalitions (not on the biggest single party governing).

  6. Why was parliament even sitting if not all of the MPs had been sworn in?

    Seems that such would remove representation.

  7. Stunned Mullet 7

    Isn’t this Hipkin’s second strike ?

    • 3stepstotheright 7.1

      There are some good people in this accidental government. Hipkins is not one of them.

      • Matthew Whitehead 7.1.1

        The government wasn’t formed accidentally, it was quite deliberate, having an extra two weeks or so on the more common formation process. 😉

        As you will have read if you went through the main text of the post, I am not one to tolerate undermining the new government’s legitimacy or majority. It was formed democratically through due process, and everyone voting for NZ First knew, or should have known, that their position on who to support was that they wouldn’t decide until after the results came in, ie. they could support either Labour or National. There is no legitimate argument that NZ First was in any way obliged to support a National government.

        • 3stepstotheright 7.1.1.1

          This government was formed accidentally. Labour never expected to be in government…hell weeks out from the Election they were polling mid ’20’s. The debacle today in parliament is nothing compared to what’s coming.

          “There is no legitimate argument that NZ First was in any way obliged to support a National government.”
          Totally agree. But after today’s legal filing by Winston Peters, do you seriously believe he negotiated with National in good faith?

          This government is an accident. They lack preparation, they lack experience.

          • tracey 7.1.1.1.1

            Good Faith? I chuckle when Nat supporters roll this out.
            It is like the Cabinet Manual requirement that Cab Ministers conduct their personal and professional lives to the “higest ethical standard” and Nat supporters said “Meh” for 9 years… and 44% of voters voted for them again. Good Faith would have seen Nats follow convention today.

            NZF and Green and Labour were clearly close or able to form a govt in polling well before the election. This tired old line is right up there with Susie the Poisoner.

            As for lack of experience you must have peed yourself over the 2008 government.

            • 3stepstotheright 7.1.1.1.1.1

              “NZF and Green and Labour were clearly close or able to form a govt in polling well before the election. ”

              And there is my point…because you’re assuming that combination was a foregone conclusion. It wasn’t, as far as the negotiating parties were concerned. It appears it was to Peters.

              • tracey

                No I am not but not being a fore gone conclusion is NOT the same as an accident as you assert. By that logic Nats would also have been an accidental govt because NZF going with them wasnt a foregone conclusion.

                No comment on lack of Good Faith and breaches of Cab Manual by prior cabinet?

                • 3stepstotheright

                  “…not being a fore gone conclusion is NOT the same as an accident as you assert.”

                  It is when the largest party in the government only polled 36%.

                  “No comment on lack of Good Faith and breaches of Cab Manual by prior cabinet?”

                  “Good Faith would have seen Nats follow convention today.”

                  Why? To hide the incompetence of the government? You do know that Labour have previously challenged the speaker in much the same way, a point well made by Barry Soper in this interview https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/98626460/live-opening-parliament.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    “That was deliberate”. Gimli*.

                    One of the advantages cited for MMP is that it makes it difficult for any single party to form a majority government.

                    It’s working exactly as advertised. On purpose. It’s certainly one of the reasons I voted for it.

                    Yay for MMP. Yay for sad Toryboys calling the government names because their owner can’t buy legislation at Cabinet Club any more.

                    *a little humour to help you get over it.

                  • tracey

                    To expose the hypocrisy of supporters of the former govt now demanding standards they never held their preferred party to account. You raised the good faith aas some faux moral argument. It would fly if you clearly havent been supporting the previous govt.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      Or…you could actually address the arguments?

                    • tracey

                      Which I have repeatedly done above and below. What you mean is I havent

                      A. Agreed with you
                      B. Allowed you to move the goalposts

                • Psych nurse

                  Now that Peters has issued legal procedings against several National MP’s ,it’s obvious going with National was never an option.

                  • tracey

                    Maybe. What if National had negotiated policy with NZF and made some concessions instead of assuming he was ego driven? He might have shelved his case?

                  • BM

                    Yep Peters lied to a big chunk of the people who voted NZ First.

                    He lied about being neutral and the negotiations been all about policy.

                    He lied about the need to wait for all the special votes

                    He lied to labour and screwed them over and forced the Greens out of Cabinet.

                    NZ First is dead next election, it’s only votes will come from the left and why the fuck would anyone on the left vote for this lying old arsehole.

                    • tracey

                      But lying doesnt bother you BM if it gets someone power? 44% of voters voted for a party with a 9 year history of lying.

                      If he lied he gets no kudos from me but watching supporters of the Key/English govt be outraged is hilarious

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “44% of voters voted for a party with a 9 year history of lying.”

                      Do you believe Jacinda didn’t know Labour actually had a majority in the house today, as she claims?

                    • BM

                      It’s going to be National vs Labour/Greens in 2020 if the COL lasts that long.

                      I’ll take comfort in the fact that the chances of Ardern getting a second term are remote.

                      Back to another nine+ years of National rule. 😈

                    • cleangreen

                      BM =Bungled Mush…..

                      Nothing true in what BM said just makes it up.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      😆

                      Being the Tea Party will guarantee a victory in 2020. Spoil everything you can. The electorate will lap it up. In fact, I’d be surprised if they don’t rise up in spontaneous rebellion against your foul oppressors.

                      When they don’t, you will know they’ve betrayed you and you can add them to the enemies list.

                      Good times.

                    • BM

                      Face facts this government is a cluster fuck, it’s doomed.

                      Three years if you’re lucky, then all this left wing bullshit tossed down the long drop where it belongs.

                      Then normal transmission resumes for the foreseeable future.

                    • Matthew Whitehead

                      Duly noted: BM thinks NZF has put itself into a death spiral.

                      I’m going to predict something different- as long as Winston hangs on, NZF will stay above 5%, and when I predict that, you know I’m not being biased because I’m on record as finding NZF dangerous and harmful to our democracy, even if I think they’re easier to work with than the Nats.

                      I think their supporters generally like the idea that Winston keeps both Labour and National on their toes because their core supporters tend to have beef with both parties. I think the ones that do want him in coalition tend to favour Labour. I think a few soft right-wing voters might go back to the Nats from NZF, but they’re probably gonna pick up more centrist voters than they lose for going into coalition and winning a bunch of stuff for the regions, and doing it speedily and fairly.

                      That’s of course assuming that NZF doesn’t get into any big controversies any time soon that cause them to hit bumps. But I think they’re resilient to hit a bump or two and stay above the threshold atm.

                    • Sam aka clump

                      Personally I think if Labour/NZFirst can use some of that billion dollar regional infrastructure fund money and create a loyalty program that connects businesses, restaurants, and dairy farmers. Maybe we could clear some of those millionz of diary cows that is in desperate need of a BBQ with out totally screwing up.

                    • Craig H

                      What are you on about? The MPs I’ve managed to discuss it with don’t think Winston lied about any of that.

                  • 3stepstotheright

                    And the papers were filed the day before/after the election (according to Newstalk ZB tonight.

                    • Matthew Whitehead

                      You’ve said your piece and everyone has heard it, stop littering it everywhere else in the thread.

                    • And the papers were filed the day before/after the election (according to Newstalk ZB tonight.

                      It’s telling that you care more about Peters filing papers in Court rather than the very real probability that a National minister or party apparatchik deliberately mis-used private information and leaked it to the media.

                      It seems that National Party sycophants like you, 3stepstotheright, (aka Intrinsicvalue/Contravert/LionKing/NehemiaWall/Sceptic/etc) are more concerned about maintaining power with the party they identify, with than any wrongdoing on their part.

                      Because thus far you’ve not expressed one iota of concern that the State (ie, the National government) mis-used it’s power to attack a political opponant. Dangerous stuff.

                      Though no doubt if Labour pulled such a stunt, you’d be spitting blood & fury as well as your usual crap.

                      Instead you’re more than willing to make up any old shit to throw around, including calling the Coalition government “accidental” and Prime Minister Ardern a “liar”.

                      Personally, I think you’re deranged. The shit you’ve posted here is almost identical to the voluminous shit you used to post on TDB before Admin/mods gave your lying arse the heave ho.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “Because thus far you’ve not expressed one iota of concern that the State (ie, the National government) mis-used it’s power to attack a political opponant.”

                      And you’ve not posted an iota of evidence that they did.

                      Frank you have a modus operandi that is utterly transparent. You write voluminous posts containing barely disguised misrepresentations and out and out falsehoods. When you are called on it you resort to insult.

                      I have no idea who all those people are you quote, but I’d suggest if they were banned from TDB is was because your lies were exposed, and you needing protecting.

              • red-blooded

                Why would it appear that Peters didn’t negotiate in good faith? Because your lot didn’t win? The fact is that there was a better policy fit with Labour. And, BTW, one might wonder if a party that foresaw the possibility (probability) of having to negotiate with another should perhaps have held by on trying to destroy it by leaking sensitive info they shouldn’t have been in possession of in the first place…

          • Matthew Whitehead 7.1.1.1.2

            Actually Jacinda very deliberately said she would still try to form a government even if she wasn’t the plurality winner (ie. largest party in Parliament) well before the election, so please get your facts straight before you embarrass yourself any further.

            And yes, all new governments after an extended period lack experience and preparation. There was similar bungling when National returned to power under John Key. (it was years before they stopped calling opposition members “Ministers” in the house, as I recall)

            And yes, National said they felt the negotiations with NZ First were done in good faith at the time, so it’s not even a matter of my personal belief- your lot said it too, and in fact Tracey Martin confirmed to the media that the final decision wasn’t fully made until the very day they announced it, because there had been some questions about whether a comment she made related to the decision to go with Labour or not, when instead it was actually referring to the uncertainty that that was what was going to be decided.

            • 3stepstotheright 7.1.1.1.2.1

              “Actually Jacinda very deliberately said she would still try to form a government even if she wasn’t the plurality winner”

              Of course she did. What else was she going to say?

              “There was similar bungling when National returned to power under John Key.”

              You mean National failed to have enough numbers in the house to have a speaker elected on the very day he was due to be elected?

              “National said they felt the negotiations with NZ First were done in good faith at the time…”

              And that would have been their sincere view. Until they were served those papers.

              • Matthew Whitehead

                Actually it looks from people going over the video like the Government had the numbers even if David Carter hadn’t been absent, so may not have needed to concede anything, but either fell for a bluff or decided to concede the SC point anyway in exchange for Mallard going unopposed.

                I can’t speak for NZ First beyond what’s in the public sphere, as I’m not a member or a supporter of the party and have no insider info. The only process I can give any insight into is the Green one. Being served papers for the leak of Winston’s personal info is the least the old government can expect, and Peters has every right to do that. It’s not evidence of any lack of due process in forming the government, and remember, Peters is very deliberately trying to cede power back to his caucus at the moment, who made the final decision on who to support, so that he has people ready to lead the party when he decides to leave.

                • 3stepstotheright

                  “It’s not evidence of any lack of due process in forming the government…”

                  Yes, it is. I’ll make my case this way:

                  1. Given the time frames involved, it is highly likely Peters was briefing his legal advisors while negotiating with National and Labour.
                  2. If not, at the very least Peters would have been ‘forming a view’ of his course of action.
                  3. It is simply implausible that Peters would be negotiating in good faith to enter government with people he was about to take to court.

                  Labour rolled over and they must now be seriously questioning what they had to give up.

                  • tracey

                    You keep moving the goalposts. You define, aboce, an accidental govt as one that was not a foregone conclusion prior to Election Day based on polls. That means a Nat Govt would also have been accidental.

                    Do you think that MPs should always cobduct themselves with Good Faith and if a Cabinet Minister uphold the requirements of the Cabinet Manual? If no, why not? If yes how did you feel about the multiple bteaches of it under National. As for Good Faith, remember the lie from Brownlee and Key about losing the Hobbit at a time they had evidence to tge contrary?

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “You define, aboce, an accidental govt as one that was not a foregone conclusion prior to Election Day based on polls.”

                      No I didn’t. That was just one of the points I made. My discussion with Matthew about NZF originated from his comment about ‘good faith’. Please read the thread more carefully.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “…how did you feel about the multiple bteaches of it under National….”

                      How do you feel about accusation that Labour sent its party president to dig dirt on John Key?

                      How do you feel about a NZ Labour Party MP using the NZ Parliament to dig dirt on an Australian MP?

                      Do you seriously believe Jacinda Ardern knew they had the numbers in Parliament this afternoon (chuckle).

                      Do you want me to go on?

                    • tracey

                      Yes because you are the one complaining that Good Faith has been breached.. You assume I am a Labour supporter/voter. I finally stopped voting Labour after the Field and Pledge Card term. When did you stop voting National or ACT?

                    • Matthew Whitehead

                      @3stepstotheright: Actually, you’re the one who raised the issue of good faith. I talked about legitimacy, democracy, and due process.

                      I don’t specifically think NZF engaged in bad faith, and it’s up to you to make that case, given you’re the one who raised the issue, and I don’t actually think it’s critical to the legitimacy of the government in any way that NZF did negotiate under good faith with National- they were under no obligation to negotiate with either bloc, they could have simply announced a preference and negotiated based on that if they had wanted to.

                  • tracey

                    “No I didn’t. That was just one of the points I made. My discussion with Matthew about NZF originated from his comment about ‘good faith’. Please read the thread more carefully. ”

                    No. You wrote

                    ““NZF and Green and Labour were clearly close or able to form a govt in polling well before the election. ”

                    And there is my point…because you’re assuming that combination was a foregone conclusion. It wasn’t, as far as the negotiating parties were concerned. It appears it was to Peters.

                    Seems odd. You say it is an accidental govt and yet say that Peters was always goubg with Labour which means far from accidental it was determined, based on the polls, weeks before the election. Contrary to your first statement about it not being possible weeks out.


                    Woooosh… there go the goalposts

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      You really don’t seem to be able to understand multiple arms of the same argument. So I’ll spell it out for you.

                      1. Winston Peters went into coalition negotiations having already filed legal papers. If you don’t understand the implications of that, then I can’t help you.
                      2. The polls have not at any time indicated a Labour Green government as a probability. Trevor Mallard admitted tonight he had given up on being Speaker just 2 months out from the election.

                      This is a government born of spite and driven by incompetence.

                      Edit…Newstalk ZB has just confirmed the papers were filed by Peters the day after the Election.

                    • red-blooded []

                      Actually, 3steps, this is a government born out of hope – the voters’ hope for a shift away from the implacably awful reign of your guys. When people vote for opposition parties they are voting for change. Even the NZF voters who didn’t know which way Winston would go wanted him to effect change, either way.

                      As for the issue of legal papers – what the hell did you expect the man to do? Roll over? Leaking the docs was spiteful and tactically stupid. This legal action is the outcome. Shock! Horror!

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      what the hell did you expect the man to do?“

                      I have no problem with him taking legal action. Pretending to be negotiating in good faith when you patently aren’t…well that’s just dishonest.

                  • Matthew Whitehead

                    1) Given the timeframes involved, I think it was highly likely that Peters was formulating the case even before the election. That doesn’t mean he had ruled out negotiating fairly with National- he could simply have decided that National handing over the info he wanted voluntarily would have been part of any governing arrangement, as what he’s suing for right now is information leading to the identity of the leaker, not actually for damages, which suggests no personal animus against the National Party MPs listed in the case, but rather that their inclusion is to ensure he doesn’t miss any relevant information regarding the identity of person who breached his privacy rights.

                    2) Even if that is the case and you accept that NZF was under some obligation to deal fairly with both Labour and the Nats, (which I don’t think it is, and I don’t think they are) Winston forming a point of view is not the same thing as NZF forming a point of view anymore, as he is making deliberate steps to devolve power to the rest of his caucus and build up the remainder of the party as able to stand independent of him. He was very clear that the decision on the coalition would be made by his caucus as a whole.

                    3) Again, NZF is under no obligation to negotiate in good faith with the party he turns down when he forms a legitimate government. Everyone accepts, for instance, that the Green Party could predetermine that it would support Labour before the election, and that the Māori Party could announce it would prefer to work with Labour. New Zealand First was free to make its own decisions based on whatever concerns their caucus and their voters wished them to.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “That doesn’t mean he had ruled out negotiating fairly with National-”

                      Yeah, it does. There is no way Peters could have been issuing legal proceedings and negotiating with the same people in good faith on a future government at the same time.

                      “Winston forming a point of view is not the same thing as NZF forming a point of view anymore,”
                      Winston IS NZ. Always has been.

                      “”NZF is under no obligation to negotiate in good faith…”
                      That’s a strange view, but even accepting it, Peters represented he was negotiating with both in good faith. That makes him a liar.

                    • 3stepsintosilliness;

                      “Yeah, it does. There is no way Peters could have been issuing legal proceedings and negotiating with the same people in good faith on a future government at the same time.”

                      Oh? Why not? If Peters has a case, the Courts will decide.

                      It’s called natural justice.

                      You’re just bitter that the Nats have been turfed out and with their belligerent behaviour, will be in Opposition for the next nine years. In the meantime, you’re relegated to irrelevancy on political fora spouting your childish nonsense.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “Oh? Why not? If Peters has a case, the Courts will decide.”

                      Taking legal action against the people you are about to form a government with? Yeah right.

                      And you’ve got posts to reply to about your bullshit lies Frank.

                    • red-blooded []

                      Leaking info about someone you may need to negotiate with? Not exactly good faith…

                    • Matthew Whitehead

                      Winston isn’t going to be NZF forever. It’s very clear from the moves he’s making to empower senior MPs within the party, to attract new talent, and to devolve power back to his caucus that he is preparing to retire. If NZF really is all about Winston, it’ll die off at that point. But Winston is betting that his fans will stick with the party. We’ll wait and see.

                      I said Peters and his party are under no obligation to negotiate in good faith with both National and Labour. As in, it was absolutely his right to predetermine who he wanted to go with, although I don’t think he actually did do that. The only people he needed to negotiate in good faith with are the ones he ended up picking, so in this instance, he could have strung National along if he really wanted to. The only reason to negotiate in good faith is to set a solid ground for future government. National have made no statements suggesting that they agree with you that the negotiations were in bad faith in retrospect, and they are the only ones who would know and have any reason to admit it. Your claiming so without any National MPs coming out and saying it is no better than a conspiracy theory.

                      I’m done discussing this with you, as you continue to baselessly assert that a legal action to compel discovery of documents is some sort of action designed to hurt the National Party and thus precludes his going into government with them. It’s absolutely reasonable for him to have prepared that case before the election with no idea he’d be in the position of holding the balance of power, and held off on filing it in case he decided to coalesce with National. If he had predetermined his coalition partner, he would have filed during the election campaign, as it would arguably have damaged National’s vote to do so.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “It’s absolutely reasonable for him to have prepared that case before the election with no idea he’d be in the position of holding the balance of powe“
                      Most, if not all polls had NZF in that position. It is simply not credible to assert he had ‘no idea’ he would be in that position. And your blithely ignoring human nature. Taking legal action against people you could be in government with is a clear sign you have no intention of actually following through.

                  • Doogs

                    Pure supposition. Try and put up some actual facts. 10 steps to the right and off the edge of the world, I think.

              • tracey

                Cant recall the last time a Nat Minister had a sincere view

          • Draco T Bastard 7.1.1.1.3

            This government was formed accidentally.
            Nope and no matter how many times you repeat it it’s still not going to be true. That means that, if you do repeat it after this, you’ll be lying.

            Labour never expected to be in government…

            Wrong again. The numbers actually stacked up in the weeks leading up to the election. Which is why National panicking throughout the election.

            They lack preparation, they lack experience.

            Wrong. they have experience. In many cases more than National have. And they have prepared as well – note all the actually policies that they have.

            There’s still going to be a few hiccups simply because shit happens.

            • 3stepstotheright 7.1.1.1.3.1

              This is an accidental government. I’ve made the case clearly. And it’s been further supported by the fact that now the Government only has a majority on 5 of the 12 select committees.

              “The numbers actually stacked up in the weeks leading up to the election. ”

              Not without NZF it didn’t. And as the election drew closer, Nationals vote actually rose.

              “they have experience.”

              The PM has zero experience of anything of worth. The Minister of Finance has worked for MFAT, and then in politics. I could go on, but this is a line up of amateurs with very little life experience outside academia and politics.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                You’ve made your case.

                Here’s the NZ Initiative arguing against MMP:

                MMP was designed in post World War II Germany to prevent a Führer-like figure emerging. A parliament of coalitions would prevent concentration of power.

                Works as advertised. Not by accident.

                • tracey

                  National and its supporters never believed they couldnt get 50% of vote plus the puppy and/or bnever elieved they just needed to make Peters DPM and govt benches were theirs again = accidental coalition.

                  Hubris my friends. Pure and simple. And now the Susie robbed us and Barnes missed the forward pass of the rugby world cups mentality is showing.

                • 3stepstotheright

                  MMP decides the formation of parliament. It is then up to the component parts of parliament of form a government. This government is (at least for now) legitimate. They also happen to be accidental.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    They also happen to be wibbly wobbly, and fake!!!, and my grandma could make a better government than you, and a you suck I want my mom government, and any other label you care to apply. After all, “sticks and stones will break my bones”.

                    Still won’t get you the Treasury benches, and MMP is working as advertised.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      I have never argued it isn’t. It has delivered relatively stable government to NZ since 1996. The latest incarnation will certainly test it’s resilience for incompetence, but that’s democracy, eh!

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Depends how you define incompetence. If they reduce the rate of malnutrition, “third world”* diseases, and “morbidity with a social gradient”** they’re beating National hands down.

                      *which doesn’t really exist anymore: cf. Hans Rosling et al.

                      **love how the Treasury department sound like soulless ghouls much?

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “Depends how you define incompetence.”

                      Well, it’s early days and we already have some good examples:

                      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11941091
                      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11941411

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Yes! A win for National over mumble procedure committee something. Sorry. I failed civics, if it was a subject in the first place, which it wasn’t. What was the question?

                      I’m not sure Labour can grasp that offering free tertiary education to everyone regardless of nationality is a good idea, but Germany does it. So that might be a win by serendipity.

                      Serendippywhat mumble mumble.

                      Government yay, National mumble technical details loser denial cough.

                  • You are obsessed with this fanciful notion of “accidental”. Is that the best you have? Because really, 3waysdown, you’re showing yourself up as really inept in this discussion.

                  • Doogs

                    A one stringed instrument . . . or an accidental troll perhaps?

                    • mpledger

                      Probably paid by how many posts he can make that carries the same meme i.e. “accidental government”.

              • McFlock

                Line 1: Winston negotiated with the nats in bad faith because he was always going to be taking legal action against the nats so was always going to go with Labour/green

                Line 2: This government is an accidental government because Winston could have gone with either party.

                lol

                • 3stepstotheright

                  Line 1 is correct.

                  Line 2 should read: Labour polled 36%, and the Labour Green combination never looked like making a sustained attempt at government. Even Trevor Mallard had given up.

                  • McFlock

                    Yet they still campaigned, negotiated, and won.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      And now we know why!

                    • McFlock

                      Yes.

                      Because the nats believed their own bullshit that winston could be bought with a few baubles, so treated him like shit and still expected him to roll over if they offered him enough.

                      Whereas Labour and the greens treated him with respect.

                      See how that works?

                      Even if he had no intention of going with National (and they could still have got him on side if they’d treated him with respect) Winston could have just said “a plague on both your houses”. But he chose to work with Labour.

                • mpledger

                  Winston is a lawyer. He is using his knowledge of the law to get to the heart of a very serious issues – who leaked his private information. To lawyers suing people is neither here not there – it’s just a tool.

                  National have nothing to fear from his request if they have nothing to hide. In fact, they ought to be happy in helping to weed out any state servant who has been breaching privacy.

                  But the more National supporters are seen to be generating so much opprobrium about the whole things means that National must have something to hide.

              • Carolyn_nth

                Unlike Bill English who worked on a farm for a couple of years, then went into politics.

                David Parker – worked in law then in business, including as a manager.

                Gerry Brownlee- worked in his family’s timber business, trained as a builder, then went into teaching.

                Bennett – worked in a rest home, then went into politics.

                Robertson – yes worked for MFAT, including at the UN – also managed NZ’s overseas aid programme, to Samoa

                Steven Joyce – was a radio presenter, was part of the team that built up the station.

                Chris Hipkin, worked as policy analyst for Industry Training Federation, then as training manager for Todd Energy, then worked in parliament.

                Yeah – glaring difference there?!

                • tracey

                  Bill English worked on Dad’s farm following a Degree in English Lit… holiday “job”? Then became a career bureaucrat working for Treasury and tfen a politician

                  Do not forget Joyces Zoology Degree. As for radio. A 28 year old working in an Auckland radio station with a Marketing and Communications Dehree gaining adveryisers and arranging events gets paid 47k after being there 3 years. So you could say he learned the ways of low wages = wealth for owner….

                  • Carolyn_Nth

                    Brownlee, went to St Bedes’ school (privileged education?) Failed UE twice, then went to work in family’s business where he trained as a carpenter….

                • 3stepstotheright

                  Notice the recurrence of the word ‘worked’. And the influence of private enterprise. You know, actually being responsible for making money, not just spending it.

                • 3stepstotheright

                  “Chris Hipkin, worked as policy analyst for Industry Training Federation, then as training manager for Todd Energy, then worked in parliament.”

                  Analyst. Training Manager. MP. Great. No wonder he screwed up so badly today.

              • eco Maori/kiwi

                3 stupid right Get some tissues I can see a tear in your eyes

              • tracey

                You actually come across as a parody now.

              • Not without NZF it didn’t.

                That means that they stacked up.

                The PM has zero experience of anything of worth.

                She’s been in the NZ parliament for the last nine years and she’s run multiple political organisations.

                The Minister of Finance has worked for MFAT, and then in politics.

                So he knows what’s happening then.

                I could go on, but this is a line up of amateurs with very little life experience outside academia and politics.

                Better than what National have which isn’t even that and they’re completely disconnected from reality.

                • 3stepstotheright

                  “That means that they stacked up.”
                  Your argument was about BEFORE the election.

                  “She’s been in the NZ parliament for the last nine years ”
                  Big deal.

                  “and she’s run multiple political organisations.”
                  No she hasn’t. She’s been a researcher and political advisor, and President of the International Socialist Youth

                  “So he knows what’s happening then.”
                  He knows nothing about Finance.

                  • Your argument was about BEFORE the election.

                    So?

                    Before the election the numbers stacked up – it was a high probability that it could be a Labour/NZ1st/Green government. All the parties (except possibly National) would have planned on the eventuality.

                    Big deal.

                    Yes it is.

                    No she hasn’t. She’s been a researcher and political advisor, and President of the International Socialist Youth

                    Exactly. She has serious experience.

                    He knows nothing about Finance.

                    I’m pretty sure that you’ll find that he does.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “So”
                      So, the numbers didn’t stack up before the election without NZF.

                      “Exactly. She has serious experience.”
                      At nothing of real significance.

                    • So, the numbers didn’t stack up before the election without NZF.

                      Which is meaningless. With NZ1st it was a distinct possibility even before the election and now we have a government after hard negotiation. Nothing accidental about it.

                      At nothing of real significance.

                      I think you’ll find that she’s done more positive stuff for the world than any one in National who only ever think of themselves.

                      And, yeah, it’s real world stuff with real significance.

                      As i said up thread – you can keep telling lying to yourself but it won’t change the facts.

                  • Doogs

                    And what does Joyce know about finance? Failed papers and saw a fictitious hole in some well researched and verified figures. Don’t make me laugh!

              • And you’ve got posts to reply to about your bullshit lies Frank.

                Oh dear me… someone’s throwing their toys around… 😀

              • red-blooded

                People get experience by doing the job. Key had bugger all experience when he became PM. Many of the Nat ministers were without real experience when they started in their roles.

                Get over it, mate. You lost. There’s a new government, elected by a majority of voters. Your last government was actually elected by a minority (49.3% if I remember correctly) – this one was elected by more than that (50.4%). A small difference, but the point is that this government is perfectly legitimate and you need to accept the decision of the voters.

                • 3stepstotheright

                  Legitimate, oh yes. But accidental none the less.

                  • red-blooded

                    Piss off. Those of us who voted for these three parties did so deliberately. The 3 parties negotiated together. Deliberately. They made a set of (deliberate) agreements.

                    There’s not such thing as an “accidental” government. Voters make decisions. So do politicians. It’s not like there was a giant flood and the Nats were washed away in an accidental landslip or wave. They were voted out – there’s a difference.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      The definition of an accidental Government is one who didn’t expect to be in government, and is only in government because of a party who did not negotiate honestly. If the shoe fits…

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “The 3 parties negotiated together.”

                      Which three parties?

                      If you’re referring to Labour, NZF and the Greens, you’re wrong. NZF negotiated a coalition agreement with Labour, who then negotiated a supply & confidence agreement with the Greens.

                      Labour got screwed by thinking NZF were sincerely talking to National; the Greens got screwed because they are once again outside of the coalition agreement. Which is why we have this /the-missing-noun/.

                    • RedLogix

                      You are making two false claims:

                      1. Immediately after the election it was always obvious on the numbers that a Lab/NZ1/Grn coalition was a real possibility. To suggest no-one could have ‘expected’ it is just plain wrong.

                      2. If you have specific evidence that NZ1 lied, or misled National at any point during the negotiation process, on any substantive matter, now would be a good time to produce it. Weak waffles will not cut mustard.

                      I should advise you that tiresome repitition of false or unsubstantiated claims tends to eventually get the moderators attention.

                      I realise it was YOUR expectation that NZ1 would go with National, but projecting this onto the rest of us an calling it an ‘accident’, is a trainwreck that is taking place entirely inside your head.

                  • Sally's Husband

                    “Accidental”?

                    That’s quite an insult to all those voters who voted Labour, Green, and NZ First. So basically what you’re telling us is that in your view anyone who doesn’t vote the way you want them to is an “accident”?

                    Even by Tory standards that’s quite a high level of arrogance you’re showing us, 3Steps.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “That’s quite an insult to all those voters who voted Labour, Green, and NZ First. So basically what you’re telling us is that in your view anyone who doesn’t vote the way you want them to is an “accident”?”

                      Oh dear, that is pathetic. I have made no reference to voters, only to this government. So stop your crying.

          • Frank Macskasy 7.1.1.1.4

            3stepsintolalaland, your grasp on reality is tenuous, to say the least.

            In case you hadn’t noticed because you’re lost in your own lalaland, 1,152,075 voters voted for National.

            1,305,333 voted for opposition parties (Labour, NZF, Greens).

            ref: http://www.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2017/

            1,305,333 beats 1,152,075 .

            You are unable to accept the will of the people graciously. I think you’d be happier in a one-party state.

            • 3stepstotheright 7.1.1.1.4.1

              You’ve got some catching up to do on another thread, Frank, where I exposed your lie about debt under National. You’re over your 4 hours.

              • The only thing “exposed” is your willful tendency to cherry pick “facts” and mis-represent with half-truths, omission, and outright lies.

                Don’t forget, my anonymous little troll, that others can read the rubbish and links you post and have arrived at the same conclusion.

                • 3stepstotheright

                  So there was a housing crisis after all

                  McFlock and others valiantly tried to defend your honour, but failed.

                  I’ll extend your 4 hours Frank. Any courage to have a go?

                  [lprent: Don’t demand. Or I will make start making manfatory demands on you and you won’t like them. It is a stupid behaviour that usually starts flamewars and gets me annoyed. Then I depart from my usual loveable behaviour and have some fun educating the fuckwit who wasted my time.

                  Read the policy and count this as a warning. ]

                  • 3steps… mate, if you didn’t get it the first time, I’m not wasting a second go at it with you. Re-read what I wrote. It’s still there, and I kept my language simple for you.

                    Try to keep up.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “Re-read what I wrote. ”

                      Here’s what you wrote:

                      ” and paid down the debt that the Nats had accumulated over the ’90s.”

                      And this was my response:

                      “Well that’s demonstrably false.
                      A graph showing net debt to GDP is available here https://tradingeconomics.com/new-zealand/government-debt-to-gdp.
                      Extend the parameters out to “MAX”. Net debt peaked just after the end of the Labour government in 1990, and reduced steadily through to the election of Labour in 1999.”

                      McFlock even tried to suggest you were referring to ‘actual debt’, but even then you were wrong /so-there-was-a-housing-crisis-after-all/#comment-1410390.

                      And please don’t call me ‘mate’.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Don’t call this little tosser “mate”, Frank. Call him “poppet” or “sweety” or “the gimp”.

                      Or perhaps “a flaccid avatar for centre right talking points”.

                      Whatever. Just not “mate”. OK? That might hurt his alleged feelings.

                  • 3stepstotheright

                    You obviously missed Frank’s comment about my taking more than 4 hours to reply to a post.

                    • Sally's Husband

                      He more than replied and answered, 3Steps. You just didn’t like the answer you got. Because his was correct and yours is bullshit.

                      If you’re the same clown that kept spamming The Daily Blog with your misinformation and distortions, then you got your ass kicked all over the place on that blogsite as well.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “He more than replied and answered, 3Steps. ”

                      Another sycophant appears for Franky.

                      No, Sally, Frank didn’t answer, because he made a claim he knew was a lie. But here’s challenge for you. Post the reference where Frank answered this /build-a-bridge-and-get-over-it/#comment-1411151.

                      Go on.

                    • mpledger

                      On an August 28 report
                      NZ First leader Winston Peters says he won’t stand by and let someone get away with “blatant dirty politics” after information about his superannuation overpayment was leaked.

                      “I’ve been flat out, as you know, on the campaign of issues and when I’ve got time I’ll turn my mind to it, but I’m not going to stand by and let someone get away with blatant dirty politics and breaking the law.”
                      https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/96249118/Winston-Peters-has-investigators-working-on-who-leaked-info-about-his-pension-overpayment

                      The election was in September.

                      Peters was quite upfront before the election about going after who leaked his information after the election. He was open and transparent. National chose to negotiate with him under those conditions just as he chose to negotiate with them.

                    • 3stepstotheright

                      “He was open and transparent. ”

                      No, he wasn’t. He negotiated with National to screw down Labour. He succeeded, but it was utterly dishonest…to both Labour and National.

                    • mpledger

                      This is getting exceedingly silly.

                      In negotiations, people use leverage to get what they want. And everyone in negotiations know their opponents are doing so.

                      Winston had leverage and he apparently used it very wisely.

                      And National made some really dumb choices to give Winston that leverage.

        • Grantoc 7.1.1.2

          Matthew, you’re making a very generous assumption about NZ First voters. A different but equally valid assumption is that many of them (the majority perhaps) have very little or no idea of what they’re voting for and the implications of their vote – except that they ‘like’ Winston. That was it. And thats why questions can be raised about how much moral authority this government actually has to be the government.

          • Venezia 7.1.1.2.1

            Grantoc…Just like many National voters have very little idea what they are voting for and the implications of that vote – except that they are property speculators and don’t want their huge capital gains threatened.

            • Grantoc 7.1.1.2.1.1

              There must be a huge number of property speculators out there Venezia – just under 50% of the voting public.

              Who ever knew this – apart from you Venezia, But you might be slightly exaggerating me thinks.

          • greywarshark 7.1.1.2.2

            Oh Grantoc considers in his eminence that he is thinking ‘about how much moral authority this government actually has to be the government’.

  8. roy cartland 8

    Wow, that sucked. Really sloppy from the govo. As Gordon Campbell says:
    http://werewolf.co.nz/2017/11/gordon-campbell-on-the-battle-over-select-committees/

    “Footnote: Well, that didn’t last long. Never under-estimate Labour’s ability to score an own-goal. Not only did Labour miscount the initial vote to elect Trevor Mallard as Speaker – it had the votes, but was bamboozled by National into thinking that it didn’t – but in its confusion, it then gave away its strategic position on select committee representation, for no valid reason.

    Blimey. If Labour can’t lift its game, the next three years are going to be ugly.”

    • Matthew Whitehead 8.1

      Yeah, not a good sign, although once all members are sworn in, this sort of bluff can’t be repeated again because they’ll only need a fraction of members present to give the remaining votes in absentia.

    • I think this shows that no parliamentary vote should be able to go through until everyone’s sworn in as it’s removing people representation.

      Oh, and the count of who’s there should be electronic.

      • tracey 8.2.1

        And Chippy needs to pay attention to detail. If he knew the numbers were fine he needed to communicate that better to those giving the SC concessions.

      • Matthew Whitehead 8.2.2

        Well, Labour claims they weren’t taken in and rather they made the decision based on wanting the vote to be unanimous. Up to you if you believe that.

    • Anne 8.3

      Have to agree Roy Cartland @ 8. Good grief, they should have seen that one coming. And fancy conceding all those select committee placings. On a hiding to nothing methinks. And
      why did they not hit back and called the Nats out for being pathetic losers and playing childish games that don’t benefit anyone?

      Winston Peters and David Parker are already at APEC but the others… why the hell were they not there on the very first day of parliament? Not good enough.

    • Sanctuary 8.4

      Labour’s whip(s) and leader of the house need to be fired over this fiasco.

  9. Booker 9

    I agree this isn’t the greatest start, but it’s a useful lesson for Labour/Greens/NZ First: National are modeling themselves after the US Republican Party, looking to obstruct everything possible and can’t be expected to follow parliamentary convention (or their word given Bill English said before the session they’d vote for Mallard).

    Instead they’ll be looking for every loophole in parliament rules to try crap like this. Sure they got some MPs on select committees but National themselves just spent 9 years ignoring select committee advice, so I don’t think there’s much gain there. And in return they’ve shown they have no problem maneuvering things to their advantage when government MPs are away doing their jobs (how’s that for eroding democracy!), as well as give the government the clear heads up that they can’t even so much as assume reasonableness or adult behavior out of National – just like the GOP.

    They’ve clearly revealed their hand from the very opening, but I think in the long term the gain isn’t going to match the benefit – if I were in Labour I’d now be playing very hard ball, closing off every loophole in parliament proceedings in order to smash National. It also shows yet again to anyone who might think of going into coalition with them that National are unable to get along with anyone.

    • Carolyn_Nth 9.1

      According to quotes of Ardern, etc., on RNZ, they had wanted a unanimous, uncontested vote for Speaker, as is traditional, and knew they had the numbers to elect Mallard if a vote was forced.

      It reads like before the speaker election, etc, National had agreed with Labour to support Mallard – but then saw an opportunity to vote someone of their choice,

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/political/343269/govt-denies-being-hoodwinked-over-speaker-election-vote

      Also sounds like it’s increased Green MP involvement in select committees – sounds good to me.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.2

      Bridges is making his play for leadership. The authoritarian followers will struggle not to follow him.

      Happy days.

    • I agree, Booker.

      But more to the point, it shows that National is continuing to engage in dishonest tactics and the headline-grabbing media will love this.

      And if the Nats go “nuclear” as the US Republicans have done, they’ll find themselves dropping in the polls. In the US they still have First Past the Post, so conservative voters have nowhere to go. In NZ, under MMP, voters have more flexibility; more choices.

      The Nats may find that the public don’t like their taxes being wasted by obstructionist MPs indulging in point-scoring and game playing.

      If I were English, I’d be re-thinking this strategy. New Zealanders want co-operation in parliament, not obstruction. This will re-bound badly on him.

      I await the next polls very eagerly.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 9.3.1

        I have a sneaking suspicion they’re already out, for those in the know David Farrar’s propaganda trough.

        This just in: David Farrar National “is still above Labour” 🙂

      • Grantoc 9.3.2

        Frank – explain if you will in what way “National is ….engaging in dishonest tactics”?

        Given that close to 50% of the electorate (the public) voted for the Nats, I’d say the public would quite pleased by their tactics, which may mean their poll ratings increase.

        And by the way how do you know that ‘New Zealanders want co operation in parliament, not obstruction”. Tell us about your research into this.

        • Sam aka clump 9.3.2.1

          Don’t mean to but in. Just wanted to mention that Saudi sheep business thing. And that other high profile case about using others interlectual property for campaign purposes. Catcha later.

        • Frank Macskasy 9.3.2.2

          Grantoc… I have a few blogposts on my blog and/or The Daily Blog that will answer your questions about National’s dishonest tactics. We can start with Bill English lying about Todd Barclay and work backwards from there to Dear Leader Key and his 500+ fibs (which fellow poster/blogger BLiP has documented extensively)…

          Given that close to 50% of the electorate (the public) voted for the Nats

          National got 44.4% of the vote. That’s not “close to 50% of the electorate”.

          In fact, their 1,152,075 Party Votes represents only about a quarter of the population.

          ref: http://www.electionresults.govt.nz/electionresults_2017/

          Tell us about your research into this.

          Really?!

          • Wayne 9.3.2.2.1

            On that basis Labour only got 20% of the vote of the population. It is a meaningless statistic.

            • Sally's Husband 9.3.2.2.1.1

              Regardless of which, I agree: 44.4% is not “close to 50%”. 49% is close to 50%. 49.9% is even closer. But not 44.4%. You Righties really need to learn to count.

            • Frank Macskasy 9.3.2.2.1.2

              That’s true, Wayne. But Labour hasn’t been whinging about some mythical “moral right to govern”. They haven’t assumed that size equates to a mandate to automatically to govern.

              The sense of entitlement from the Nats is over-powering and we’re not getting that from anyone else.

      • Booker 9.3.3

        I agree too – obstructionism isn’t going to work in an MMP environment. Not to mention most people will already have enough exposure to US politics to recognize the same tricks being played out here, so it will get old fast.

      • 3stepstotheright 9.3.4

        Good spin, Frank, but Labour are claiming they knew they had the numbers, so why concede on the SC’s? Labour are lying. And they need to lean to count.

        • Sam aka clump 9.3.4.1

          I guess the honeymoon is over. Let the bitchin begin!

        • Frank Macskasy 9.3.4.2

          And they need to lean to count.

          The left are way ahead of you on that point 3stepsto***. The most trenchant criticism has been from supporters of this government.

          But I repeat; if that’s how the Tories want to play the game, so be it. I’m betting that the Coalition Government has learned it’s lesson and won’t be allowing a repeat any time soon.

          Meanwhile, the Public will be the one to decide if National’s dishonesty will be supported or not. Again, I’m betting that New Zealanders’ innate sense of fair play will view dimly the machinations from the Nats.

          But if you think that kind of behaviour is acceptable by you, well, that speaks volumes about your own moral compass.

    • Matthew Whitehead 9.4

      Yeah, this is why when I wrote this piece I was pleased it looked like they were going to play hardball with National. I’m still not sure I buy their line about giving up their position on that just to get Mallard appointed as Speaker with no contest. If the opposition wants to play hardball, you play hardball with spikes.

    • Venezia 9.5

      Booker…I agree 100%.

  10. patricia bremner 10

    Our whips didn’t work it.

    • Sanctuary 10.1

      What do you expect, when the Labour chief whip is that useless piece of past it dead wood Ruth Dyson? She should get the bullet for this fiasco, but she won’t because she is a woman with all the right connections in the party’s factions.

    • Westiechick 10.2

      who didn’t turn up and why?

      • Delia 10.2.1

        Well Winston is at Apec, I get the impression they were all gainfully employed elsewhere..you could always ask on the Labour FB page..do a bit of your own homework.

  11. Nick 11

    Really childish from the natz, what a pack of wasters. Pathetic bunch of humans.

    • James 11.1

      Yet they have put themselves in a position to oppose more effectively- great result.

      • the pigman 11.1.1

        Yup, you’ve got to hand it for them, the Nats were complete shit at governing, but they seem to have really found their niche in Opposition — fighting the battles about the political issues that count.

        Their talents would be wasted elsewhere, I’m sure the electorate will oblige and let them do what they’re good at for the next 12 – 20 years, or until the board gets taken over and they’re re-branded by the next shareholder activist, whichever comes earlier.

  12. cleangreen 12

    It was a planned strategy from the house of “Dirty politics” so we should never expect this pathetic lot of National MP’s to work in the best interests of all citizens of NZ and not just for their rich friends.

    We now know what to expect from this ‘dysfuctional National Tory lot’ from now on.

    Jacinda make sure in future to have your enemies (national) close and your coalition partners much closer.

  13. Foreign waka 13

    And here I am thinking that the NZ parliamentarians are so much better than what we see in the US…. apparently not. It must be tremendously embarrassing to have Mr English constantly going on about why he is not the PM. Good god, get on with it and give something back after so many years of a more than ample remuneration from your employer, the taxpayer.

  14. cleangreen 14

    Yes Foriegn waka,
    I agree entirely here.
    Labour coalition needs to now investigate the whole last nine years of financial documentation to see what seedy corrupt practices went on under natioonal as we can see clearly now they rely on deluding and bluffing the public as they hoodwinked the labour today with the threat of saying they had ‘the majority’ when they did not clearly have so labour need to re-double their efforts to find undesirable financial dealings in all those last nine years of dealings they made as there may well be some evidence of using public funding to carry out their past dealings with other parties illegally.

    National are dishonest, and Labour will find some evidence in those Government financial records over the last nine years for sure.

    Jacinda please ‘lets do this’.

    • Grantoc 14.1

      You don’t know what you’re talking about CG.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 14.1.1

        Looks that way. I thought everyone knew that the bribes National MPs and ministers solicit are delivered in the form of “lucrative business opportunities” once they leave office.

        The Party gets cash upfront, the MPs deliver whatever legislation has been paid for, and book a seat at the trough for later.

  15. Ian 15

    no excuse for basic incompetence.If labour were running my dairy farm today and didn’t have a resource consent ,we would have been given an abatement notice. The clowns are running the circus. Failing to sort out the chaiman ,with hundreds of years of precedent is a massive fail for this government.

    • greywarshark 15.1

      They have only just started their term. How come you are decrying Labour and lambasting them ie roasting them like mutton chops on the barbecue? Are you always going to be making negative comments about the left? Or maybe I just look at the wrong times.

      • Ian 15.1.1

        They are only their because a short drunk bearing a grudge has a liking for baubles . You need to implant that in your brain as the Government evolves.

    • Delia 15.2

      If only the National MPs realised we employ them and they are actually working for us, not their pathetic party which is now out of govt..sorry Ian the truth hurts, but it is over for National. Labour/NZFirst are now in charge.

    • RedLogix 15.3

      Turns out that the members absent had the leave of Parliament, and everyone knew the numbers, but National exploited this without warning to play an ugly game. It is routine for members to be absent the House and customary for all Parties to respect this, and/or resolve any concerns expeditiously in the Business Committee. Breaking with this basic courtesy to is unprecedented.

      And again, it is customary for the Speaker to be elected unopposed as a mark of respect for the role; blackmailing the govt by threatening to force a vote is also unprecedented.

      And then using that blackmail to derail change to an agreement that the House had already voted for unanimously is a blatant, cynical hypocrisy of the lowest kind.

      And naturally our media lapped this up and praised this ‘brazen bluff’ all to high heaven.

      And all this on the first day. Well English did signal that he was going to run an obstructionist Opposition and now we have the opening play in that game plan confirmed. It’s not going to get any better from here on in.

      While Adern may shrug it away as a ‘bit of politics”, Mallard who now runs the House will not forget in a hurry.

      • Wayne 15.3.1

        David Carter was not elected unopposed. That might be part of the reason for yesterday. Also deep memories of 1996, when Labour just went crazy in the first few weeks of opposition.
        Labour was hardly noted for assisting the government during the last 9 years, and used whatever leverage they had.
        But overall not a big deal, in fact business as usual.
        Labour can’t just stiff National whenever they want as they were doing on the Select Committee numbers. Inevitably there will be consequences.
        In the event the Speaker was elected unopposed.

        • Graeme 15.3.1.1

          “In the event the Speaker was elected unopposed”

          In my mind that was the objective. And achieved, with clarity. National has to accept Trevor Mallard as legitimate speaker and can’t grumble like Labour did with Carter.

          It also showed Jacinda Ardern is prepared to do business and make a deal. It looked a bit messy, but so’s business and life.

          National came across as petulant children, sure they got half of what they wanted, but they had to support the Speaker’s appointment.

          Good governance by Jacinda Ardern.

      • Wayne 15.3.2

        Mallard will put this in the past. He was ultimately elected unopposed.
        If Mallard wants to be remembered as a good speaker he will act in a non partisan fashion. Lockwood Smith set a good example of that.

  16. Carolyn_nth 16

    First comes denial – belligerence and arrogance to delay the feelings of grief.

    And this oldie from Gordon Lightfoot for the “pretty legal” song copyright infringers:

    Sometimes I think it’s a sin,
    When I think that I’m winning and I’m losing again.

  17. RedLogix 17

    An archetypal ‘under-arm bowl’ moment from National. They’ve won the point, but reputational damage will linger for a long time after.

    • James 17.1

      Reading all the press it’s labour that have come out bad not national.

      • RedLogix 17.1.1

        Colour me surprised. Funny how they say things like it was ‘blatant blackmail’ or ‘an audacious stunt’ … but come down on the side of approving of it.

      • Doogs 17.1.2

        “badly” . . . it’s an adverb, related to the verb “come” . . . how I hate uneducated trolls!

      • Ffloyd 17.1.3

        ‘All the Press’ Do you mean NZ Herald and Stuff NatRags? Do you read anything else?

  18. Roy 18

    Well I’m going with slamming a few things out under urgency. If the Nats are going to be dicks about it and just set out to undermine and frustrate, the Gov can just go without them. They wouldn’t be the first, now would they.

  19. NewsFlash 19

    Absolutely hilarious, tonight, reading the posts from all those disenfranchised Nat voters vent their frustration because not enough Kiwis were stupid enough to support the biggest liars in NZ political history, I bet their alcohol consumption has increased dramatically since the inevitable news was delivered.

    NZ has a habit of replacing the Government every 9 yrs, regardless of how effective or ineffective, as in the most recent election.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 19.1

      Yes, a hugely entertaining series of comments from disappointed Nat supporters, and if this opening salvo is any indication then the governing Labour/NZ1st/Green team can look forward to an erratic stream of National party own goals for the foreseeable future.

      The fact that many commentators see National’s blackmail bluff as a win is tragicomedy gold. It’s confirmation (as if any was needed) that the Nat magpies intend to continue their dirty lying ways – what a gift. Wait until Joyce and English start cawing again about fiscal holes – they just can’t help themselves.

      IF the NAct opposition can behave in a consistently constructive fashion, and begin the process of party renewal (and, critically, leadership renewal) without importing more deBarclays, then they might just have a shot at the NZ treasury benches in six years. But that’s a big IF. They are propelled by a glut of lies that has generated considerable momentum, and even with the best will in the woeld will take time for reform.

  20. Delia 20

    National let us know when you want to start working for the country and not for yourselves. I doubt the NZ public will put up with these stunts for very long.

  21. Michelle 21

    I listened to many of the maiden speeches in parliament yesterday the gnats sound like they still haven’t come to terms with MMP or losing. They were happy with MMP delivering them 3 terms but now they seems angry , bitter, twisted and out for revenge. They really need to pull their bloody heads in or bugger of if they aren’t truly interested in what is best for our country and stop being selfish. And the rubbish that came out of some of their mouths they truly believe their own spin. Hayes and Lee should be ashamed of themselves putting the boot into their own people and they really think they have made a difference. Now if they had made such a difference to Maori why have so many chosen to vote for change. We ain’t all stupid.

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