Flag observations

Written By: - Date published: 8:29 am, December 12th, 2015 - 95 comments
Categories: identity - Tags:

According to Flag Consideration Project head Professor John Burrows the current result (black and blue fern) is preliminary and may still change when the final vote is announced on Tuesday.

The back and blue fern did not win on first preferences, but was the eventual winner with 50.53% on the fourth and final round.

Other observations from Twitter last night:

95 comments on “Flag observations”

  1. Chooky 1

    as long as the vacuous corporate Xero design Red Peak does not get in to face off against our existing flag …this is a small victory in the whole sorry and expensive saga to change the NZ flag which no one wants changed

    If Red peak becomes New Zealand’s flag I will NEVER vote Green party again

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1

      🙄

      It’s all about priorities on Planet Chooky.

      • Chooky 1.1.1

        well the anonymous blokes run the planet and they are f..king incompetent…

        evidence ?… as you are an anonymous bloke who always likes evidence

        The evidence is that the PLANET is a mess

    • Chooky 1.2

      Congratulations to Winston Peters and New Zealand First …who have the pulse and respect of most New Zealanders on keeping the existing flag

      ( unlike James Shaw and the Greens who wanted ‘Red Peak’ ….and kept the option of voting for the existing flag out of the first referendum by doing a deal with jonkey nact in support of ‘Red Peak’ flag inclusion…this meant the Greens forced a second costly referendum on New Zealanders who want their existing flag)

      Like many other New Zealanders:

      ….”New Zealand First leader Winston Peters wrote “keep our flag” on his ballot paper, meaning it would be counted as an informal vote.

      He said the fact that 149,022 people had cast informal votes (9.7 per cent) was “terribly high”, and showed the level of discontent over the flawed process.

      The vote had made it even more clear that the vast majority of New Zealanders did not want any flag change, Mr Peters said.

      The NZ First leader was no fan of tonight’s winner…

      http://m.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11559764

      (and yus Red Peak has been donged on the head in the first round !…not a popular choice)

      Red Peak a Green Lemon

      • weka 1.2.1

        unlike James Shaw and the Greens who wanted ‘Red Peak’ ….and kept the option of voting for the existing flag out of the first referendum by doing a deal with jonkey nact in support of ‘Red Peak’ flag inclusion…this meant the Greens forced a second costly referendum on New Zealanders who want their existing flag

        Please link to something credible that proves that the second referendum wouldn’t have happened if it weren’t for the GP.

        • Chooky 1.2.1.1

          ‘Politics winner for Red Peak’

          “A groundswell of support and an unlikely political alliance won a remarkable victory for Red Peak supporters with Prime Minister John Key backing down to allow its inclusion on the flag referendum ballot.

          A law change to include Red Peak was debated under urgency last night after Mr Key agreed to pick up a Green Party bill. In return the Green Party agreed to vote against any bid by the Labour Party to include a yes/no vote on changing the flag in the first referendum – a critical factor in persuading the Government to adopt the bill…

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11517949

          • Sacha 1.2.1.1.1

            which says nothing about “and kept the option of voting for the existing flag out of the first referendum”

            – because that statement is simply not true, is it.

            • weka 1.2.1.1.1.1

              +1

              Chooky, please provide evidence that Labour’s bill had enough votes to pass if the GP had not voted against it. You will have to give actual numbers. Afaik, National and its allies still out-vote the left on pretty much everything.

              • Disraeli Gladstone

                Chooky can’t show any evidence because she seemingly puppets anything Bradbury says without thinking about it herself.

                The Greens have been the one ray of sunshine in an otherwise dreary year of politics.

                • One Two

                  Using The Greens as positive spin ,is quite the low water mark

                  Like their Australian equivilant, The Greens are part of the established and systematic problems, politics offers to the world

                  • weka

                    sure, but it will be much easier to change the world if the GP were in government than NACT.

                  • Chooky

                    +100 One Two…Greens make mistakes too…we should not bury our heads in the sand when they do

                    • weka

                      No-one is denying that the GP make mistakes. You’re being called out (again) for making shit up.

                    • Chooky

                      @ weka…i dont think so…look at the link

                    • Sacha

                      Chooky, not voting with Labour was political theatre added to the deal by the Nats. It would have made no difference to the final numbers, as you have been told.

                      Did make the opposition look divided, much like when Labour excluded the Greens from the security select committee. We need to see more unity demonstrated all round before a non-right govt is a prospect.

            • D'Esterre 1.2.1.1.1.2

              Sacha:
              “…any bid by the Labour Party to include a yes/no vote on changing the flag in the first referendum…”
              and
              “… voting for the existing flag….. the first referendum”
              mean the same thing. So Chooky is right. What the GP did was to completely scotch any chance that a yes/no question – ie, voting for the existing flag – could, with a bit more political agitation, have been put into the first referendum. Then they tried to dress it up in the language of consensus politics: I wrote to Gareth Hughes about it, and I got a reply claiming pretty much that. And all for a flag that never had a groundswell of support in the first place. Which some of us pointed out at the time; it was just a twitter storm, which the twitterati were completely unable to see.

              The GP fell into a trap, and in so doing, got Dear Leader out of a hole which he’d dug for himself. I haven’t forgotten this: it’ll be a cold day in hell before I vote Green again.

              • Sacha

                Labour never had the numbers. Chooky’s statement “the Greens forced a second costly referendum” is pure fantasy.

                • D'Esterre

                  Sacha: “Labour never had the numbers.”

                  Neither did the twitteratis’ darling red peak to begin with, and look what happened there.

                  We’ll never know now what might have been possible. Thanks to the GP wanting to make itself look statesparty-like. Bah humbug!

  2. millsy 2

    The most important vote is in March.

    Vote to keep the current flag!

      • Paul 2.1.1

        Because I’m not a Key fanboy, like you

        • BM 2.1.1.1

          Key derangement syndrome strikes again.

          If you’d written that you’d prefer the old pommie flag because you’re a raving monarchist, I would respect that.

          The fact that you would vote for the current flag purely because of your hatred of John Key, makes you a fuckwit of the highest order.

          • Paul 2.1.1.1.1

            zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

          • left for deadshark 2.1.1.1.2

            Their could well be other reasons Bloody minded.

            The fact that you would vote for the current flag purely because of your hatred of John Key, makes you a fuckwit of the highest order.

            Discuss

          • Sabine 2.1.1.1.3

            because it is a waste of money.

            feed the children, no coin
            save the forests, no coin
            keep the houses warm, no coin
            keep the state houses, no coin
            keep the schools funded, no coin
            keep the cops on the roads, no coin
            keep the nurses and doctors in the hospitals and clinics, no coin
            clean up the rivers, no coin
            raise the super for our old ones, no coin
            look after our unemployed and sick, no coin
            look after our widowers and widows, look after the single parents, no coin

            i am sure I have forgotten many other things for which we have no coin, but we happen to have coin for a tea towel, cause the other tea towel is imperialistic and colonialist but hey…..we have coin for the royal breeder, the useless prick of a royal son and his second wife, the quite possible illegitimate third waiting for a throne or maybe not, cause that is not imperialistic or colonialist.

            so mate, once more you and Gareth Morgan and john Key and the National Party Posse are simply again on the wrong side of doing the right thing.

            And i have no issues changing the tea towels, cause we all now, if we don’t wash them every now and then they just get full of bacteria and cause us intestinal misfortune.

          • millsy 2.1.1.1.4

            If John Minto was PM. I still wouldnt vote to change the flag.

      • Halfcrown 2.1.2

        Why Not

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.3

        Why would we vote to change it when nothing has changed?

      • rob 2.1.4

        because all the others are shit! and political colours should stay out of any choices. keep the current flag is the only option at this stage IMO.

      • Dialey 2.1.5

        Because the silver fern options are lemons, poorly designed, look ridiculous when the wind blows them back to front, and as far as I am concerned do not represent a New Zealand I want to be part of.

    • doug stuart 2.2

      our current flag is a pommie navel flag the blue ensign with some stars added, time to get rid of our colonial past and change the flag.

      • Gangnam Style 2.2.1

        Take off the Union Jack & leave the stars, seems pretty simple to me. I don’t like the ‘fern’, so will be voting for the current flag. I don’t believe in change for the sake of change. We also still have honour titles like ‘sir’ & ‘dame’ & pay for brit royals to come visit, so a bit cheeky to suddenly be all embarrassed about our brit past.

        • Rodel 2.2.1.1

          “Take off the Union Jack & leave the stars” would make sense to me if I cared.
          If that had been a choice I might have got off my lazy apathetic bum and voted.

        • Puddleglum 2.2.2.1

          John Key is presumably agitating for a flag change there, too, when he’s on holiday. After all, he has the ear of the President.

          The entry on Hawaii in Wikipedia is worth reading for those who wondered why an island thousands of miles away from mainland US became a state. Here’s a teaser:

          The Kingdom of Hawaiʻi was sovereign from 1810 until 1893 when the monarchy was overthrown by resident American and European capitalists and landholders in a coup d’état. Hawaii was an independent republic from 1894 until August 12, 1898, when it officially became a territory of the United States. Hawaii was admitted as a U.S. state on August 21, 1959.

          And, in more detail:

          In January 1893, Queen Liliʻuokalani was overthrown and replaced by a provisional government composed of members of the American Committee of Safety. American lawyer Sanford B. Dole became President of the Republic when the Provisional Government of Hawaii ended on July 4, 1894. Controversy ensued in the following years as the Queen tried to regain her throne. The administration of President Grover Cleveland commissioned the Blount Report, which concluded that the removal of Liliʻuokalani had been illegal. The U.S. government first demanded that Queen Liliʻuokalani be reinstated, but the Provisional Government refused.

          Congress conducted an independent investigation, and on February 26, 1894, submitted the Morgan Report, which found all parties, including Minister Stevens—with the exception of the Queen—”not guilty” and not responsible for the coup. Partisans on both sides of the debate questioned the accuracy and impartiality of both the Blount and Morgan reports over the events of 1893.

          In 1993, the US Congress passed a joint Apology Resolution regarding the overthrow; it was signed by President Bill Clinton. The resolution apologized for the overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom and acknowledged that the United States had annexed Hawaii unlawfully.

          Another triumph for the apparently unstoppable appeal and allure of Western democracy. But I suppose it’s never too late to apologise – even when it’s all become a fait accompli.

      • TeWhareWhero 2.2.3

        A ‘pommie navel flag’ is an intriguing image.

        Point is we are still connected constitutionally to Britain so why change the flag unless we intend to cut all those links and become a republic?

        On a Kiwi passport it says that the ‘Governor General in the Realm of NZ requests in the name of Her Majesty The Queen …..’ the holder is a NZ citizen and a subject of the monarch of the UK.

        If the flag is changed, the NZ coat of arms will have to be changed so that the Britannia figure is carrying the new flag. And if we are to cut all the visual links to the UK -which is the logic underpinning some people’s opposition to the current modified naval ensign, the crown over the coat of arms would have to go.

        So, will there be a call for an entirely new coat of arms to represent this new NZ – which would require another design exercise and another referendum? Cartoonists, on your marks.

      • cogito 2.2.4

        still better than the tea towel alternative.

    • Chooky 2.3

      +100 millsy

  3. b waghorn 3

    The fact no one flag got a clear majority says we should dfitch the idea till a flag comes along that 50% plus of voters choose as their first pick.
    Democracy is not going with what 16% of voters want winning.?

    • Jester? 3.1

      “Democracy is not going with what 16% of voters want winning.?”

      So Labour in 2017 will not have a mandate to govern then?

      • weka 3.1.1

        Of course not, they will have to form a coalition with other parties. That’s because it’s MMP which was designed to increase representation. Your comparison fails of course, because it’s not like two or three flags can get together and out compete the others 🙄

      • weka 3.1.2

        So why did they use STV for this referendum?

        • weka 3.1.2.1

          hmm, not sure how this comment ended up here, it was supposed to be at the bottom of the thread. I will repost it down below.

        • lurgee 3.1.2.2

          A pedant notes: they didn’t. They used Alternative Vote.

          STV only works when you are electing multiple winners from a pool of candidates.

          If we have used STV, we’d have ended up with three flags. Which might have been the only way to keep people happy.

          I liked Red Peak, bestest, FWIW; though as I am not a New Zealander I did not feel it was my place to vote for which rag you lot want to hang on a stick.

          • weka 3.1.2.2.1

            thanks! So why use Alternate Vote (in this situation)?

            • lurgee 3.1.2.2.1.1

              I’d go with the non-conspiratorial idea that the final contender had to have the support of most of the those participating; if the red corner version of the Ferny Stars had won based on FPTP then there would have been 4/5 of those participating going, “Bugger that,” and the result of round two would have been a foregone conclusion (though I suspect it still is).

              At least the process has produced a contender that has the grudging support of more than half of those who participated. Probably, there will be a considerable number of transfers over from the red to the blue team, as (lets face it) the difference between one and the other is minimal.

              But I look at the Blue Ferny Stars and I’m glad I’m not a New Zealander. It looks like something David Brent would dream up if you asked him to design a flag.

              • weka

                cheers, that makes a lot of sense.

                • lurgee

                  Thing is, I’m not sure the logic works. When the real referendum comes round, I think people who voted for some ferny variation from the start will probably vote for the contender because they like ferns and stars. But a lot of people who voted for Red Peak, or Koru, or spoiled their ballots will hold off, hoping to have another stab at it in 10 years time. So it will be a pretty convincing walk over for the current flag. Because AV tends to produce the least disliked option, not one that people feel passionate about.

          • GregJ 3.1.2.2.2

            A pedant notes: they didn’t. They used Alternative Vote.

            Strictly speaking in NZ we call it Preferential Voting (PV) which is one of the alternative names for Instant Run-off Voting (IRV) of which others are: alternative vote (AV), transferable vote, ranked choice voting (RCV). 🙂

      • b waghorn 3.1.3

        If you were my jester and that was the pinnacle of you humorous japes it would be the ax for you !!

    • Jester 3.2

      “Democracy is not going with what 16% of voters want winning.?”

      So you’re ruling out Labour in 2017 then?

    • Incognito 4.1

      These pseudo-polls are frustrating. Instead of giving a tiny little (blue) bar with 1% at 3500-3550 votes or whatever the number is, just give the actual number of votes. Do you see this on social media, for example, instead of actual number of ‘likes’ you get a percentage or relative number of likes: 0.004% likes? I think not. It just adds to the fact that these ‘polls’ are completely unscientific and simply click bait.

  4. Wainwright 5

    The lockwood designs have zero imagination. It’s like Australia redesigning their flag and demanding it have a kangaroo on it because otherwise no one will be able to tell it’s Australia. Primary-school logic. Vote no in the second referendum.

  5. Richard 6

    It will be interesting to see how Little reacts to the result.

    I see two options. 1 Try and get Key to drop the second referendum or 2 Accept the results and urge voters to vote in March.

    Know which option would gain my support.

    • BLiP 6.1

      Little, like the rest us, has got no choice but to accept the result. Encouraging everyone to vote in the next ballot is his best option – but also spending a lot of time explaining how this whole thing is an act of ice cold cynicism on the part of John Key to cause division and distraction as part of an early start to the 2017 election. Dirty Politics on a grand scale. Little should rise above the fray and get on with his job of opposing what ever else National Ltd™ is planning on running out over the next two years – privatisation of education, health, social services and everything else its grubby donors want their hands on.

  6. weka 7

    So why did they use STV for this particular referendum?

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      It’s the fairest way to select an individual option amongst a range of options.

      There are other various systems, but the most obvious alternative is FPP, which clearly is inferior.

  7. The Union Flag will be dropped in a few years when the 1707 Act of Union of Scotland and England is repealed. The Flag will become a historic artefact at that point.

    NZ will have to choose a new flag at that point to replace the current one if they decide to retain it in the referendum.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1

      Why? Is there some international law that says you can’t have an outdated colonial symbol on your flag?

    • Gabby 9.2

      No they won’t. Just because the poms stopped using it wouldn’t mean we had to.

  8. rob 10

    wake up NZ. this so called flag change wont bring any profit or benefits but change and dissent will bring unnecessary disruption to this country, mark my words this is a totally brain fade idea and fuel for disruption. totally idiotic in the countries current situation. weldone flung key and Co.
    hope you take the first hit, for the team ie:(country)

  9. rod 11

    The flag that won the first ballot was John Keys first choice. Makes you wonder who counted all those votes so quickly after the poll closed. I expect BM will tell me.

  10. DS 12

    I voted for Red Peak as the least obnoxious (it at least looks like a flag), and Hypnoflag for the troll value. I’d have probably voted for the current flag over Red Peak, but it’d at least have made me stop to think.

    Against John Key’s pet fern flag? I’ll back the current one, come hell or high water. And I don’t even *like* the current one.

    • whateva next? 12.1

      I refused to engage by not sending back form at all. All about manipulation, and getting people excited about competition and “winning’ something, Xfactor, MasterChef, RWC, ad nauesum

      • gsays 12.1.1

        yes whateva, well said.
        the entire flag shenanagins seems to be a cunning ploy for everyone to have their say, be it “i like this choice” thru to “fjk”.
        (after all, my opinion is important)

        you have to admit, it is very good politics.

        like you, i will not engage in the process.
        i did give my voting paper to my 13 yr old to fill in.
        after the initial thrill of being included in the affair, the papers sat on the coffee table till i threw them out today.

        ( by commenting on the rag debate i am breaking my own embargo)

  11. dave 13

    i defaced this vote feed the bloody kids next one i will vote no change fuck john key

  12. Muttonbird 14

    Fear not people. Lanthanide assures us the informal vote was low.

    Everyone else, including history, says it was more than ten times the previous highest.

    • b waghorn 14.1

      Talked to a chap today today and he voted in the proper manner but he picked monkey tail and big fern because it would muddy the waters in his words. He’ll vote no change next time and I’m picking a lot of the votes for the non lock woods where for the same reason.

  13. Here’s some polling over the last few months:

    21 September – 70% say no to change after seeing the four original picks for alternatives.

    27 September – On a change or no change question 65% say no change.

    15 October – this quite closely reflected the outcome in terms of the closeness of the fern designs, though it put Red Peak closer to them than in the referendum. The current flag had 64% support when up against the top contender (the red Lockwood).

    24 November – 65% want no change.

    The polling for ‘no change’ has remained pretty consistent over those months. That would suggest a reasonable proportion of the people voting in the postal ballot would also vote for no change in the March referendum.

    • cogito 15.1

      Key really missed a trick with this whole flag thing. He should have proposed it back in 2008/9 when people were hanging on to his every word and following him around like teenage groupies . Now, thankfully, people are seeing through his cynical self-serving diversions and deceptions. End result: hopefully they won’t vote for his embarrassment of a tea towel.

  14. aerobubble 16

    There was consensus for the fern and the southern cross.

    Like where did that come from and why did the ballot clearly make these images icons as winners.

    So sure a flag was chosen fern cross three of five from a proportional process was always going for mediocre.

  15. Brutus Iscariot 17

    I’d say the large number of Informals could partly be due to a lack of understanding of the Preferential Voting System, which NZ’ers generally aren’t used to.

    More than likely a large chunk of those people thought you were supposed to give each design a Mark out of 5.

    • D'Esterre 17.1

      Brutus Iscariot: “More than likely a large chunk of those people thought you were supposed to give each design a Mark out of 5.”

      The instructions were clear and easy to follow. Occam’s razor says that those who voted informally knew what they were doing.

      • Brutus Iscariot 17.1.1

        Never underestimate the stupidity of the general populace…

        • cogito 17.1.1.1

          A fact that gets exploited by Key at every turn.

        • D'Esterre 17.1.1.2

          Brutus Iscariot: “Never underestimate the stupidity of the general populace…”

          And yet, and yet… The proportion of informal votes is much, much higher than for previous referenda. So what’s your theory as to the stupidity of the general population being so much greater now than in the past?

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