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Establishment hysteria and MMP

Written By: - Date published: 2:43 pm, September 25th, 2017 - 40 comments
Categories: election 2017, MMP - Tags: , , ,

The papers are full of the expected establishment hysteria today, trying to paint the election as a done deal for the Nats. Given Peters’ well known love for the media, I wonder what he will make of that? Anyway, the best pundit on the topic so far is Professor Richard Shaw.

‘No such thing’ as moral majority – politics professor

A politics professor says there’s no such thing as a ‘moral majority’ in the New Zealand constitution as the wash up from Saturday’s cliffhanger election continues.

National won 46 percent of the party vote, and has claimed it has a ‘moral’ right to govern despite losing its majority.

Professor Richard Shaw Shaw told The AM Show that when it comes to forming a government coalition, all that matters is that a combination of parties can persuade the Governor General they can reach 61 seats. “The word ‘moral’ doesn’t appear in our constitution,” said Prof Shaw.

Prof Shaw said Mr Peters faces his toughest decision yet under MMP, and that it is “not a comfortable position for him”.

“I think that he is caught between a bit of a rock and a bit of a hard place. I think it will depend significantly on what his base says. If his interpretation is that his voters … gave him a mandate to change the government, then if there is a moral question it becomes framed in terms of what the voters want.

Indeed.

“If, on the other hand, he thinks his voters are sending him a message that his job is to maintain a stable and continuous government, which was the National Party’s line, then that’s a different look.”

When asked who he believes won the election, Prof Shaw had this to say: “Nobody’s won the election yet. The people who won the election are the people who form the government.”

Further interesting reading for the day: Mark Sainsbury: Bad blood makes National-NZ First deal unlikely.

40 comments on “Establishment hysteria and MMP ”

  1. Ed 1

    Add Trotter to that list.
    Sometimes he’s the msm’s useful idiot.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11926207

    • tc 1.1

      He’s not alone as the MSM’s tamed ‘lefties’ along with Pagani etc

    • Chris 1.2

      The most disturbing thing in Trotter’s article was that he thinks some people are more equal than others.

      “Look at who you would be denying if you went with Labour and the Greens assuming you are Winston. Because these just aren’t any 46 per cent these are the most powerful people in the country.”

      • DS 1.2.1

        He actually should have articulated his point a it further there.

        Basically, Trotter’s argument is that if Peters goes with Labour, the Ruling Class will cry foul, and use their extensive economic and social power to hamstring or destroy any resulting government (in fact, they will probably call for the abolition of MMP too). Trotter is pointing out, basically, that while Labour occasionally gets into government, it never actually gets into power.

        • AB 1.2.1.1

          Yes DS. Nicely put – that is Chris’s point and I agree with you that a L/NZF/G coalition would also spur another attack on MMP.
          Of course Chris doesn’t approve of this state of affairs – he just thinks it’s a reality and wants to avoid the danger.
          I think he may be right, however part of me wants a L/NZF/G coalition just to see how off the scale insane the reaction to it is. Would there be actual political violence and would the police connive at it? Would leftists be ‘disappeared’ off helicopters over the Tasman sea a la Pinochet? What would it be like to be at the mercy of the guy with the “pretty communist” sign? Because there are plenty like him. And was 1981 just a rehearsal?

          • mikesh 1.2.1.1.1

            Perhaps the best thing for Peters to do would be stay out of any coalition, but enter into a C&S agreement with Labour. Then the latter will have to bear the brunt of any attack by the PTB.

      • Incognito 1.2.2

        On election night Winston Peters made it very clear that he’s no friend of the elites and Trotter knows this (or so he should). Peters would love to deny a few powerful people I reckon.

    • DS 1.3

      Trotter’s very good at analysing political situations.

      From before the War.

  2. tc 2

    The MSM played way too big a big part in saturdays result, It should have an “RIP the truth” sign all over it.

    So they’ve moved on from reguritating Nact’s BS about non existent fiscal holes / lies about labour policy without framing it as the political stunt it was now to “…expected establishment hysteria …”.

    Just another day in the NZ MSM then.

    • Ed 2.1

      A new government must change the media

      • tc 2.1.1

        You’ll never change the owned corporate MSM, you need an alternative which we can still craft from the ruins that passes for TVNZ.

        It needs to be enshrined in legislation and made very difficult to unravel without the public seeing what you’re getting up to.

        Turdbull keeps trying but the ABC act is an inconvenient wall he doesn’t possess numbers in senate to change. If he tried the general public would be incandescent as it’s obvious why he wants to de-power them…..Rupert Murdoch etc

  3. Jim 3

    Bugger the media, bugger your professor, I`m selibrating the future Labour, NZ First, Greens coalition.

  4. Ant 5

    Can anyone explain to me why the media ( e.g. Gower et al who expressed outrage) didn’t put to Joyce: –

    “To clear your good name please publish your figures arriving at the 11.7 billion hole so that experts can confirm the veracity of the calculation”?

    • ianmac 5.1

      They have all tried to get an answer to that and Joyce just ignores them all and goes on about other “holes.
      Remember when Winston was hounded for nearly a year by National/Act accusing him of lying about a donation from Owen Glenn. Shock horror. NZF out of Parliament – sacked for lying about a donation.

      Today Joyce/English get rewarded for lying about $11billion, by getting increased votes. See the enormity and hypocrisy of that???

    • roy cartland 5.2

      Would have made no difference. Joyce would just have said: “Look at the Labour document yourself, it’s all there, clear as day” knowing no one would.

      He knew that it was nothing to do with fact, rather giving the ignorant and change-hating a straw to clutch at, and that’s what happened.

    • Ed 5.3

      Because they are compromised puppets.

    • Incognito 5.4

      Clearing his good name is an oxymoron.

  5. ianmac 6

    James Elliot has an hilarious summary of the media broadcasts of the election. In part he says:

    “TVOne has oddly gone for an audience of just two, one either side of Hosking and Hilary. I assume they’re members of the public as they’re quietly watching Hosking pontificate his way through his own answers to his own rhetorical questions.

    I realise they’re pundits when Hilary tries to throw a question to them. But that’s when Hosking shows off his newly-acquired ventriloquism skills and answers for them. ”

    The mercenary nature of Media survival demands that they keep him on because he is so blatantly arrogant. He gets reactions so he is worth money. I despise him.

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/09/23/49719/election-tv-puts-captive-audience-through-hell

  6. Anne 7

    Bryan Gould – as usual – succinctly puts the case for rationality not hubris:

    http://www.bryangould.com/the-incoming-tide/

    • ianmac 7.1

      Yes Anne. That last line is great:
      “Rather than act as a mere adjunct to an existing administration, Winston could play an important role, as an elder statesman in, and foundation member of, a new government – one that catches the incoming tide.”

      Hear! Hear!

      • mauī 7.1.1

        In the States they call that person “The Grey Champion”. An unlikely elder figure that comes to power and sorts the nations problems, e.g. Lincoln, Roosevelt. In Winston’s case though he’s more a likely figure than unlikely.

  7. esoteric pineapples 8

    It is true that there is no such thing as a “moral majority” but if Winston decides that National does have the “moral majority” then he is justified in going with National on that basis because that is his call to make, just as he could go with National for any other reason that seemed important to him.

  8. Carolyn_nth 9

    The National Pary came into power 9 years ago on the back of Hollowmen propaganda, and the 2 track Dirty Politics smear machine (from KB and WO to the MSM). They don’t know anything else but misinformation, un-truths, double speak, smears and distractions

    “Moral”and “democracy” are words they use as part of the propaganda – they don’t practice them when it suits. See for instance to record number of uses of urgency in the House, by-passing the usual checks and balances.

    They will go down throwing everything from their tired old box of tricks – should we expect any different?

    We should expect better from many of the dominant voices in the MSM than to support and propagate this undermining of democracy – but I can’t see it happening in the near future.

  9. roy cartland 10

    Gordon Campbell reckons the trainwreck of a government in coalition with Winston is a poison chalice. If LAB/GRE miss out, they will have dodged a bullet.

    http://werewolf.co.nz/2017/09/gordon-campbell-on-the-election-result-and-likely-road-ahead/

    • I don’t reckon. Turning down the opportunity now would be a craven betrayal of all who voted for change. If Winston beckons, we must follow.
      🙂

    • garibaldi 10.2

      What a load of crock. There is no moral obligation to go with the largest single party full stop.

      • William 10.2.1

        Indeed.
        It’s sometimes useful to extrapolate a situation. Imagine a parallel universe where an election was also held on Saturday. The party votes received there were the same as here, except instead of a party called NZ First coming third, it was a party called Socialist Unity Party of NZ.
        If there was a “moral obligation”, which of Labour, Greens or SUP should form a coalition with National.
        Clearly a requirement that the largest party forms part of the government is a nonsense.

      • Ed 10.2.2

        If Hosking says it, it must be a lie.

  10. Carolyn_nth 11

    Bryce Edwards argues against the idea that National won the election and have a “moral mandate” to form the next government. He cites various sources that make the argument for National winning, then shows the fallacies of their arguments.

    There is a strong narrative at the moment that National has received an extraordinary result. But has it really? The vote for centre right parties has actually declined significantly at this election. At the 2014 election, the aggregate vote for National, Act and the Conservatives was over 52 per cent. This year, the final result for those parties is projected to be little more than 45 per cent. What’s more the National Party has now lost allies – United Future and the Maori Party are gone from Parliament, and Act’s party vote has halved. Basically, National has cannibalised the vote of other rightwing parties. In devouring its coalition partners, National might now look stronger, but in reality, fewer voters are actually supporting parties of the right.

    But it is the illusion that National has won significantly more vote than the political left that particularly needs addressing.

  11. mosa 12

    Brilliant thanks Anne.

    When the dust settles and we are looking for an intelligent viewpoint we don’t get it from the media circus and their agenda but from commentators like Gould.

    Where are these guys on the election night coverage with their succinct political gravitas ?

    Instead we get the usual screaming me me’s.

    • Anne 12.1

      Because they’re all in each other’s pockets mosa. It doesn’t matter which news outlet they work for, they regard themselves as an an exclusive clique and they watch each others backs knowing that if they get into hot-water the clique will watch their backs.

      Back in the Helen Clark days I went to a Labour Party conference at the Bruce Mason Theatre in Takapuna, Auckland. The media commandeered the nicest room in the building with a lovely view of the ocean for their leisure breaks. They set up a large table which they sat around mumbling to each other. No-one dared go near the room. I thought… “f**k you, its not your room… I’m going in to look at the view. I went in and they shut up like clams. I hung around for 5 mins. while they sat there silent and morose and staring at their navels. John Armstrong and Audrey Young were among them. Oh boy, did I enjoy it!

  12. Ankerrawshark 13

    I am astounded that National and moral authority are being used in the same sentence.

    Those such as Sir John Key who claim the numbers give national the moral majority display no awareness of principles or ethics (are we surprised).

    I believe NZ first has some moral duty to form a coalition with the party that reflects best its policies and values. That has to be labour and greens. But such an argument would be lost on those who have zero principles (other than winning) and absolutely no morals

  13. Incognito 14

    Of course National would argue it has a moral whatever because it is dog eat dog business for National; always has been and always will. It also was the reason why Steven Joyce ‘invented’ the tax hole because it was his moral right and duty in a dog eat dog campaign.

  14. Ankerrawshark 15

    Poor Mr. English reveals his Catholic roots with his call to recognise “moral authority”. This is something the Church asserts when it wants to make pronouncements on matters of faith. In the unprincipled scrabbling for power that charterises NZ politics, the delusion that morality had anything to do with its process is a lost cause.

    This was written by mr ankerrawshark not the usual commenter ms ankerrawshark k

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