web analytics

Green MP Gareth Hughes speaking bold truth ahead of his retirement at next election

Written By: - Date published: 9:54 am, November 17th, 2019 - 105 comments
Categories: economy, Gareth Hughes, greens - Tags: , ,

In this interview with Stuff journalist Henry Cooke, Gareth Hughes talks about wanting to spend time with his kids while they’re still young, and his frustration with the slowness of change in the face of the enormity of the climate and other crises we are facing. There’s some solid green analysis here from Hughes and much of the interview is spent talking about Hughes’ concern at our lack of the large scale social, political and economic change necessary to meet the situation we are in,

“Across my 10 years here, things have actually got worse. Emissions have increased, we are still losing a hundred million tons of topsoil every year – our most precious resource – homelessness is growing,” Hughes says.

“I don’t think the Government has been transformational. There’s been pockets of transformation, but you know, I don’t think historians are gonna look back at it and say ‘This was a turning point on the scale of the 1930s or 1980s’. And I think that’s desperately needed.”

Hughes says New Zealand needs a change on the scale of those revolutions – the first Labour Government creating the welfare state and the fourth one tearing it apart.

“As I reflect across 20 years of activism I realise that I’ve spent 20 years winning campaigns, but each one’s kind of like chopping off the head of the hydra. There’s always another equally important campaign right behind it. I’ve spent 20 years fighting the symptoms, not the source.”

“I’ve grown up knowing nothing but the revolution of the early 1980s. This is this operating system which was uploaded in New Zealand and people have tried to install better policies or better programs, but if they don’t work with the system, they are crashing.”

Hughes thinks it is key that the Greens push the country towards a new economic system able to properly fight climate change, and it isn’t yet.

“Our ambitions have to match the scale of the emergency.

Based on a leak, Henry Cooke reported last week that a review by senior Green Party members was recommending that the Greens scrap the Budget Responsibility Rules, which are seen as embedding neoliberalism in legislation and the national accounts,

The review sets out a proposed new fiscal strategy for the party to be inserted into its wider economic policy, which would “incorporate the need to transition to a circular economy which does not rely on unlimited growth” and “recognises the multiple roles of the tax system as set out in the Taxation section of this Policy”.

“The Green Party supports a broader and more balanced approach to fiscal policy in line with both the overall principles of this Policy, and the recognition that unlimited material growth is impossible,” the reviewers write.

Fiscal strategy should “maintain macroeconomic stability, including full employment and controlled inflation” and “uses the full range of tools available to finance government expenditure, and choose the mix between them on the basis of their effects on broader goals”.

The review was commissioned, its writers say, because “we are a party that believes in bold, progressive economic policies that focus on the health of our planet and the well-being of our people”.

This will make many Green members and lefties much happier about the direction of the party (myself included, I’m particularly pleased to see the front footing of the Green Party Principle that unlimited growth is impossible).

There’s an irony in Hughes’ retirement, one that plagues our parliamentary system. We want the people who retire because they want to spend time with their kids before they grow up to be the people running the country. The good MPs tend to leave before they get too damaged by the system and because they recognise the value of what really matters. Maybe we need to change this system too, so that they can stay.

Hughes has been in parliament for ten years, and I’m relieved to hear he will stay involved with the party. His passion, focus, analysis and experience are still very much needed.

All the best for the next phase of your life Gareth.

______________________________________________________________________________

Front Page image from this 2016 Spinoff piece by Hughes on parenting while in parliament.

105 comments on “Green MP Gareth Hughes speaking bold truth ahead of his retirement at next election”

  1. Robert Guyton 1

    Funny to compare the quotes you chose, weka, and those I posted on OM just before you put this post up. Gareth's calling it all out and good on him.

    • weka 1.1

      It's a great interview and I'm very grateful he said what he said.

      Hoping that more Greens will speak up and get some momentum. I don’t think the ‘we need to be cautious and careful to get into govt’ thing will run next year. Time to be bold now.

    • Adrian Thornton 1.2

      Yep I like your post, this one pretty much say's it all

      " "I don't think the Government has been transformational. There's been pockets of transformation, but you know, I don't think historians are gonna look back at it and say 'This was a turning point on the scale of the 1930s or 1980s'. And I think that's desperately needed."

      I guess Gareth has come to understand that a Free market Liberal Labour (and Green) govt is not going to fundamentally change anything, and could be said to be almost ideologically opposed to transformative change.. I mean sure it's better than having National in power…but this time and going forward that is not nearly enough..no where near enough.

      Turn Labour Left!

  2. Rosemary McDonald 2

    Excellent post weka, and sadly, all too true.

    There was a window of opportunity to effect true change that was lost as our elected representatives chose continued obescience to neoliberalism.

    Julius Ceasar comes to mind…'there's a time in the tide etc, etc…'

    What a bunch of numpties we are.

  3. Ad 3

    Who is next on the Green list?

  4. marty mars 4

    You gave it a go and for that I thank you.

    "Across my 10 years here, things have actually got worse. Emissions have increased, we are still losing a hundred million tons of topsoil every year – our most precious resource – homelessness is growing," Hughes says.

    Sadly that is the truth and it's not great. 

    • Bg 4.1

      The Stuff article states that

      "Hughes will remain a force in the party, as many other former MPs do, and is looking forward to supporting his wife in her career for a while, after a year of "world-schooling" his kids around the globe."

      I wonder what the carbon footprint of that was? 

      Hypocrisy thy name is Gareth Hughes

      • observer 4.1.1

        When the go-to argument for deniers is "ooh, you're on a plane" (accompanied by a witless smirk of self-satisfaction, like it's soooo clever) … then the debate really is over.

        • Bg 4.1.1.1

          So you're not denying his hypocrisy. Glad you agree with me. 

          Look if someone wants to play the Green agenda card, then at least walk the walk

          • Drowsy M. Kram 4.1.1.1.1

            Bg (Blue-green?), just curious – are you 'playing' an anti-Green “agenda card"?

          • weka 4.1.1.1.2

            what's the carbon footprint of Hughes' proposed trip? You seem to think you know what it is, so please share with us all. Also please share what you have done to reduce your own carbon footprint, otherwise you might end up sounding like a hypocrite yourself.

            • Climaction 4.1.1.1.2.1

              Why can no one question a “greens” carbon footprint and carbon intentions without having to prove they’re greener? 
              No one deserves a free pass just because they vote the way you like if their actions are at odds with their words. 

              • weka

                BG wasn't doing that. He was assuming a large carbon footprint and jumping straight to accusations of hypocrisy without any evidence and zero attempt at political analysis. I'd welcome a thoughtful analysis of Green MPs' footprints, but right wingers jumping into threads about Green MPs just so they can use them to bash them, can get fucked. This is a political discussion, and there's an expectation that people don't troll and actually bring something to the table.

          • Incognito 4.1.1.1.3

            Can you explain why you think it is hypocrisy?

            For example, how is dropping off kids at school (once or every day?) by car (EV?) hypocritical in regard to the “Green agenda card”?

            I’d suggest that you either have poor understanding of the “Green agenda card” and showing you’re ignorant or you’re deliberately having a go at Mr Hughes and the Greens, in which case you also show you’re ignorant.

      • alwyn 4.1.2

        I think the "world schooling" is meant to be after he leaves Parliament, ie in 2021.

        He looks as if he intends to serve out his term and then go travelling for a year.

        I am basing this on the following story on Stuff. Weka hasn't posted a link. as far as I can see, so she, and you, may be looking at a story that gives a different emphasis

        https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/117439116/outgoing-green-mp-gareth-hughes-says-the-government-has-not-been-transformational

        It says "is looking forward to supporting his wife in her career for a while, after a year of "world-schooling" his kids around the globe". I took this to mean that he, or they, would be doing it, not that his wife has already done so.

        • Incognito 4.1.2.1

          The first three words of the OP are hyperlinked to the exact same link as in your comment 🙂

          • weka 4.1.2.1.1

            followed by a big cut and paste from the same article 😉

            • alwyn 4.1.2.1.1.1

              Indeed you had and yes it is. I must get my eyes checked. It looks just the same colour as the typed material and I didn't see it as a link.. 
              The blue simply isn’t really standing out. Perhaps it is the lighting in the room.

              • weka

                some software is better than others with this format.

                • Incognito

                  It is more work for the author but I believe you can bold the text of a hyperlink. That might help a little. Readers have to choose (personalise) the display setting on their device that works best for them. However, most people I know seem to use the default setting 😉

                  In this interview

                  In this interview

                  In this interview

                  • weka

                    I think it's usually clear enough from the context and that authors link when quoting 😉

                  • Andre

                    Surely authors can expect readers to have at least the minimum of observational skills and interwebz savvy to make that extra effort unnecessary? Even though it is alwyn under discussion …

                    • weka

                      Yes, and I think alwyn acknowledged he was distracted/not paying attention.

                    • Incognito

                      Not all readers are equally able. I know one author here who has particularly bad eyesight. I also know that quite a few commenters here have trouble with hyperlinks and the likes. What’s bread & butter for one can be alien to another. Easy to forget. When you teach or mentor, you’re constantly reminded of it though.

              • Anne

                Perhaps it is the lighting in the room.

                I have the same trouble. The blue is indistinct and if not separated from rest of comment can be missed altogether.

                • lprent

                  Try a green color. You may need to shift-refresh or shift-F5 to load the effect.

                  I’ve left the colors blue on the admin and side bar for comparison. Also I must check the mobile which uses a different CSS – that is blue and underscore. Something that doesn’t work for headers.

                  • weka

                    that's worse on Firefox mac. How do I turn it back to blue?

                  • Incognito

                    Yup, much worse on laptop using MS Edge.

                    • lprent

                      Ok – try a dark red

                      Incidentally I’m changing the server side theme styles.

                      a{ text-decoration:none; }
                      /*
                      a:link{ color:#005689; }
                      a:visited{ color:#005689; }
                      a:hover{ background-color:#005689; color:#fff; }
                      a:active{ background-color:#005689; color:#fff; }
                      a:focus{ outline:#7f0101 dotted 1px; }
                      */
                      a:link{ color:#890012; }
                      a:visited{ color:#890012; }
                      a:hover{ background-color:#890012; color:#fff; }
                      a:active{ background-color:#890012; color:#fff; }
                      a:focus{ outline:#7f0101 dotted 1px; }

                    • weka []

                      that’s the most visible of the three to me.

                    • weka []

                      but I could see the blue, so it’s Anne and alwyn that should check.

                    • weka []

                      Just looked at the Front Page, red is not a good look style wise. Clashes with image colours, and is a tad intense.

                    • lprent []

                      Yep agreed. I went through this exercise a number of times.

                      Reverting.

                    • Incognito []

                      Can you try a light colour text highlight? Like what you see when you hover your cursor over a hyperlink. Currently, it is some dark hue blue.

                    • lprent []

                      The default for :active and :hover is to reverse the colors?

                      Hard to beat that…

                    • Incognito []

                      I wouldn’t know 🙂

                    • lprent

                      That is what is there now – when you wave a cursor over a link it changes to while on a blue background.

      • Sacha 4.1.3

        Yeah, the thing about leading change.. https://twitter.com/GreenSolitaire/status/1189992163590987777/photo/1

        The inventor of the engine used a horse every day.

        The inventor of the lightbulb worked by candlelight.

  5. greywarshark 5

    Really good post and true stuff for us to absorb and keep at the top of our minds. 

    There is synergy with the Nick Kelly post yesterday on the choice for austerity in the UK after 2008 – a choice of one economic policy from a number, being used to club the country into line; but what sort of line?  The Brits don't understand that the neoliberalism carrying out Ayn Rand's zeitgeist is killing their social contract and the culture that enabled the Brits to feel proud of their country.   Brexit alternative spelling – desperation!

    NZ became the bellwether for the world when Labour's precocious spoilt children joyfully took on the role of game-changers.   And treated us as pawns in a game of Monopoly.    The people who managed to land on the houses and could afford them, did well.    Some who did went to jail, a lot who didn't do well went for longer, some who fell by the wayside got a free pass and stayed out of jail, and some trudged on with heads down because there seemed nothing to look up for.   And we fish in the lucky dip for the stats and outcomes we want, replacing those we disdain, until we get what matches our wishes, and leave the rest for the others.

    This morning Ian Cross was being honoured on Media Watch.   https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/mediawatch/audio/2018722092/ian-cross-editor-broadcast-boss-critic-and-conscience          He felt we were inured to what was going on round us, being challenged and debated woke us up.   Anyway that is my take on the piece on him.  

    When the old ones who have been both idealistic and practical, but who have not been able to prevent the direction of NZ going awry, die out, will that be the end of the challengers who looked for equality for all, not just empty references to it while actually self-interest triumphs?   If change only comes when desperation spills over, it's not good, and likely to bite us in the bum like Brexit will in the UK.

  6. Dukeofurl 6

    During the 'horror week'  during the last election campaign Hughes says this

    "I crashed my car, dropping my kids off at school. "

    Sounds very typical middle class family ,  even one thats not very  green aware, what was all the 'revolution' rhetoric about ?

    Even looking ahead to his ‘gap year’
    ” is looking forward to supporting his wife in her career for a while, after a year of “world-schooling” his kids around the globe. ”
    Around the globe ….. so very 80s!

    He seems so very out of touch compared to what ex Mps like Sue Bradford and Jeannette Fitzsimons .

    • Drowsy M. Kram 6.1

      …what was all the ‘revolution‘ rhetoric about ?

    • weka 6.2

      have you given up flying and driving Duke? What do you do when its raining?

      Full quote,

      "I was doorknocking in Gisborne by myself. Not a single person said they were gonna vote Green. It was in the rain. I crashed my car, dropping my kids off at school. That was the sort of horror period."

      • Dukeofurl 6.2.1

        I see kids  going to school in the rain all the time,  as I did  once, there is these things called 'raincoats'

        . And yes Auckland traffic is made even worse by the  car being used for the school run…every day. It was Gisborne though, so whats that all about.

        • weka 6.2.1.1

          You didn't answer my questions.

          • Dukeofurl 6.2.1.1.1

            Im not a Green party MP who claims some sort of revolutionary zeal  but he instead is just like any other  middle class  MP.

            "Our ambitions have to match the scale of the emergency."  he has the rhetoric but doesnt even seem to have scaled back his future travel. If he wants to give an exclusive to a  middle class  paper like the Sunday Times, those are the sort of readers who are going to be wonder, like me, whats he really all about.

            I gave examples of 2 ex Green Mps  who have by their subsequent lives  seem to still follow their principles and still have authenticity.   It doesnt seem too hard.

            Maybe his final words  say it all  really

            "I was just a working class kid from Gisborne who cared about girls and cars and rugby more than politics that somehow fell into a passion for environmentalism, somehow got to Parliament."

            A modern day Being There

             

            • weka 6.2.1.1.1.1

              Ok, so link me to something that shows that Fitzsimons and Bradford don't drive cars (I'm assuming this is what you have a problem with) and how they manage without them, and what kind of car Hughes drove his kids to school in, how often he does that and why, how far it is from home to school and what other options exist for that family.

              The point I am getting at here is that having green integrity isn't a purist thing, and it's not black and white. We're all trapped in the system that insists on burning fossil fuels. Hughes just spent 20 years trying to change that. Your comments come across as largely ignorant of both his personal lifestyle choices and his politics. They look like someone took a superficial look at a MSM interview that was about something else, and decided to take some potshots at the interviewee for not living up to imagined standards that you don't even support or agree with.
               

              • Dukeofurl

                The travelling the world, after he leaves politics which really stunned me. Driving a car wasnt the issue  so much as the 'school run'

                Dont seem like Metiria is  'travelling the world' either. 

                Hughes wasnt even someone I was barely aware of, so reading the story is what Im basing my comments on. Others seem to know him better, they are saying so.

                • weka

                  Right. So there might be something there in terms of MSM representation and how the general public interpret what they read, but basically you just decided to run some stupid shit lines that you made up from your own ignorance.

                  • Dukeofurl

                    Why do other  ex Green Mps  seem to avoid the trap  of wanting  a globe trotting lifestyle.

                    Im saying he s not like the rest. Maybe I have a rosey view on Sue, Metiria and Janette and others, I dont think so.

                    They arent shit lines , its direct quotes  in the story and its put out there in the most attention hes got in the media the last 2 years. As Hughes seemed to  find his critical voice  and thinks the pace of change should step up ..but not in the year after he leaves parliament.

                    With 5-6% of the vote , that isnt going to happen either,  connecting with his working class roots back in Gisborne  ( ha!)  might tell him why.

                     

                    • weka

                      We have a *single sentence to go on. Maybe they're going to travel by boat. Maybe they're going to fly and then travel by train.

                      How many times has Fitzsimons been overseas since she retired from politics? Or Bradford?

                      The making up shit lines stuff was more about you casting Hughes as a superficial greenie when you freely admit you know almost nothing about him. It's fine that you don't know much about him, but why not find out instead of making things up?

                      It might also be true that Hughes thinks flying is ok. Many climate activists do, likewise greenies. The Thunbergs and Holmgrens of the world are not the dominant part of that culture. There *is a conversation to be had about that, but it won't be a good one when it starts with superficiality and casting aspersions based on sfa.

            • Incognito 6.2.1.1.1.2

              Many (…) of the current Green MPs don’t conform to the stereotypical ‘tree-hugger’ and this is often used to accuse them of some level of personal moral failing (AKA hypocrisy). This may seem a powerful rhetorical argument but it is intellectually lazy, lame, and weak.

              I also think your analogy with Being There is flawed in a similar way. The main character is simple, naive, and misinterpreted (and thus misunderstood) who finds himself in unusual circumstances by chance, not by personal choice and determination.

            • PB 6.2.1.1.1.3

              It's people like you that are hypocrites – you say individual impact on the climate is minimal, yet then decry Green MPs for their individual efforts (without having a single clue how they balance their lives.)

              Bu what environmentalists know is that it is INDUSTRY that is responsible for 90% of the harm to our planet. Yes, if 7 billion people were just going about their business, no problem. But the global financial sector are funding the exploitation of the planet for decades into the future – every year. Just to feed the accelerating profit of the global growth engine, which only serves the digital bank balances of the super rich. Not the human race.

              So, yeah, the focus on the individual wouldn't be such a problem if you accept the Green movement "agenda" and let fix the system properly.

              • Dukeofurl

                I have  mentioned 3 ex green Mps who seem to have  skipped the middle class lifestyle after parliament . Maybe theres more that dont aim to travel the world while  at the same time claiming a climate emergency. Discretionary personal travel using fossil fuels   is at least one of those things XR supporters can avoid now.

                'Speaking the truth' after you signal  that you are leaving , works in unusual ways.

                 

            • Robert Guyton 6.2.1.1.1.4

              Maybe his final words  say it all  really

              "I was just a working class kid from Gisborne who cared about girls and cars and rugby more than politics that somehow fell into a passion for environmentalism, somehow got to Parliament."

              I think you missed the "passion for environmentalism" bit, Duke. He developed a PASSION FOR ENVIRONMENTALISM.

              K?

               

               

              • Dukeofurl

                A story back about 2011 in ODT told the real truth about how he became a Green MP.

                He left Gisborne to study at Victoria,  choosing politics and  and was a student activist with Greenpeace, including working for them. he even said people in Gisborne who knew  him sort of predicted he would have gone into politics.

                So much for the version of the Kid from Gisborne,  rugby , cars  and  girls who sort  miraculously ended up as an MP …pleeese.

                If he gets around to Sweden in 2021, they will be casting some serious flygskam his way!

                 

                • Robert Guyton

                  Hmmmm…but how does this:

                  "He left Gisborne to study at Victoria,  choosing politics "

                  Not equate with this,

                  "I was just a working class kid from Gisborne who cared about girls and cars and rugby more than politics that somehow fell into a passion for environmentalism"? He left Gisborne, then chose to study politics from which he was drawn to environmental politics; I don't get your angle.

                  The stories line up well and your "So much for the version of the Kid from Gisborne…" has no credibility, imo.

                  • Dukeofurl

                     

                    Why didnt he just say , he  'was avid follower  and student of politics ( and religion) and  was a Greenpeace  and Green party activist' so being a Green Mp was a natural thing to end up as.

                    "After a few years with Greenpeace, Hughes started working for the Green Party. Working closely with the MPs made him realise it was something he wanted to take further."

                    Nothing about that is 'falling' at all. Clear progression for many Mps…work for the party ..get on the list.

                    The Gisborne  -MP jump  had a lot of steps  including  Victoria,   Wellington ..Green peace , Green party.

                    Reminds me of the Bill English 'story '  Dipton farmer to Parliament , when in reality he  was married and living in Wellington as a Treasury analyst just before  he was elected.

                    Its my thing about  ( all) Mps who try  run the PR spin  over their real background before  parliament… National is full of them ( remember Keys 'investment banking' , when he was a currency trader) but I  didnt think  a Green Mp  would play the same game. Disappointing as I generally have a good point of view over their authenticity.

                     

                    • weka

                      You do get that Hughes didn't write either article. Someone else compiled them from an interview. 

                  • weka

                    Duke, who by his own admission knows almost nothing about GH, knows the Real Truth. Cos he knows how to read and had a solid capacity for confirmation bias.

                    ODT headline from the article he refers to: "Gareth Hughes: From boy-racer to MP"

                    At this stage I'm tossing up between Duke not having very good logic, or trolling.

                    • Dukeofurl

                      Check the " first person quotes" dear Weka from your link which is correctly described as an 'interview with Stuff

                      "I was just a working class kid from Gisborne who cared about girls and cars and rugby more than politics that somehow fell into a passion for environmentalism, somehow got to Parliament. So I've always pinched myself, the fact that I'm here."

                      That  DOES mean its what Hughes said  …you must know this  is how its done .  Direct quotes are what all journalists live for .

                      yet your claim is 'You do get that Hughes didn't write either article."

                      Like to retract that ?

                    • weka []

                      Of course not. Henry Cooke wrote the article and made the choices about which quotes to include.

                      No idea what you are on about. Hughes has said some things about his background, and you’re trying to make out it’s some big thing but you appear to be grasping at straws so you can declare he’s somehow now what he says he is. Seems stupid and a waste of time to me, especially coming from someone who knows nothing about him.

                      If you can’t tell the difference between a reporter reporting and someone writing an article themselves about themselves, that just takes me back the lack of logic in your comments here.

    • alwyn 6.3

      His plan for the first year out of Parliament actually sounds very similar to what Fitzsimmons said she was planning, as stated in her valedictory speech. There she said the following

      "Retirement is not really a concept I can imagine, but I do intend to take the gap year I never had after school – or maybe a gap six months – while the head clears and the future takes shape. I am looking forward to a lot of work on our farm where Harry has held the fort for too long on his own. I am looking forward to more family time, more music, films and theatre, and to three months in Europe visiting my son and old friends."

      That is admittedly only 3 months of overseas travel rather than a year but the principle doesn't seem that different.

      https://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1002/S00123.htm

  7. solkta 7

    So a huge thanks to Gareth from me. Some people on here like to bleat about politicians but it is obvious to me that many have no idea just how hard Green MPs work and how this impacts on their family lives.

    • weka 7.1

      This. Also MPs like Hughes who are doing all that mahi but who don't get a lot of media attention for it. Solid. I wish parliament was full of MPs like him.

      • Rosemary McDonald 7.1.1

        " …wish parliament was full of MPs like him."

        In this vein I am organising life to fit in an evening event featuring Marylin Waring and her recently published memoir of her days in the Pit.  I have read her book, but am looking forward to hearing her speak in the flesh.  I understand she has presence.

        • weka 7.1.1.1

          If I was in the right part of the country, I would totally do that too! I saw her speak many years ago in Dunedin, it was formative to my politics. She is one of my favourite political people. Another one that got out early before the damage was done. In that Dndn talk, she addressed this, looking at what happened to women MPs over time the longer they were there (Shipley, Clark, Richardson and so on). Parliament is brutal.

  8. observer 8

    Given that he had a decent chance of a job in the Lab/Green government of 2020, it seems fair to take his stated reasons for quitting at face value. A hack would have hung around.

    He's half-right about the government not being transformational, if the measurement is rhetoric v reality. (That's hardly new in politics: Key was "ambitious for New Zealand". "on the cusp" of something or other, etc).

    But in terms of shifting the ground underneath, it has been skillfully managed, doing more than Clark, with less (she had two terms before the Winston veto kicked in, Dunne's veto in the second term was weaker). It has been transitional, and I do wish people would take a moment to consider the counter-factual: a Nat-NZF government more reactionary than anything under Key or Bolger, and a climate change nightmare.

    Anyway, good luck to Gareth in his retirement, and to the Greens, get some Ministers in on your list please, they will be needed!

    • weka 8.1

      good points. Transitional is a good framing. Best thing that could happen next would be a L/G govt with substantially more MPs. The problem here isn't the GP, or Shaw, it's that lefties in NZ won't vote Green in numbers. I don't get it. The more MPs they have the more they can match policy to their Principles. I've been waiting a long time for them to go back to the steady state economics stuff, but it's always been there waiting for the support from the public.

      Re more Green ministers, with Hughes leaving, there are only 3 MPs who aren't already ministers and two are first time MPs this term. If the number of MPs increases next year, there will be lots of inexperienced newbies, unless Mathers and Coates stand again.

      • The Chairman 8.1.1

        The problem here isn't the GP, or Shaw, it's that lefties in NZ won't vote Green in numbers. 

        I (and dear I say others) stand with with Jack on this one.

        "His [Shaw's] approach to politics is, I think, different to what the Greens should be and I think the Greens were in terms of our roots," he says. "I'm concerned about the centrist drift of the party, particularly under James Shaw's leadership."

        https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2019/08/green-party-candidate-jack-mcdonald-quits-over-james-shaw-s-centrist-drift.html

        And with Gareth now departing (another left voice gone from within) will they drift further to the centre?

        • weka 8.1.1.1

          How many times have you voted for the Greens in the past 30 years? How many of those years have you been a member. Jack has his reasons for his opinion, and I agree with some and disagree with others. Your opinion just looks like drag 'em down reckons (again).

          I'm confident that Shaw is still the left of you. Have you listened to his maiden speech?

          • The Chairman 8.1.1.1.1

            3 times. Been a member for 20 years.

            I'm confident that Shaw is still the left of you.

            Your opinion just looks like drag 'em down reckons. 

            [away you go out of my posts. Don’t troll me and if you want to comment under my posts in the future learn where the boundaries are. We’ve been over this before, too many times – weka]

            • solkta 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Bullshit. As someone who has been a member for more than 20 years i can tell you that you could not be as ignorant of the Party as your concern trolling has revealed if this were true.

              And are you really trying to tell us you were a member while not voting for them in three or four elections?? 

            • Robert Guyton 8.1.1.1.1.2

              Well, I'm cheering your decision, weka.

  9. Pat 9

    Does anyone else find it disturbing that politicians only feel free to 'speak the truth' upon exit?

    • Andre 9.1

      Well, speaking the truth before leaving would simply feed a media frenzy of political theatre critics frothing about internal dissent.

      So props to Gareth for keeping something that clearly bothered him a lot out of the public spectacle arena until he was taking himself out of it, for the sake of the party and the government.

      • Pat 9.1.1

        I know many of the rationalisations used to justify it but my point is it is a tacit admission that our society is organised and directed on deliberate delusion and falsehood…any wonder the result?

        • Andre 9.1.1.1

          I guess that's a reflection of whether one's worldview is about trying to do the best one can given the way things are, or about bemoaning that things aren't the way they 'should be'.

        • Drowsy M. Kram 9.1.1.2

          "…our society is organised and directed on deliberate delusion and falsehood…"

          Thanks Pat for stating that point succinctly, with an example – a useful lens IMHO.

          Must be draining trying to achieve progressive change in such and environment – think quicksand!

        • weka 9.1.1.3

          I don't think what Hughes is saying is news to people in green circles, so perhaps it's also about what the MSM does. At the moment, getting something supposedly contentious going on with the Greens will always get more media attention.

          Parliament is centred on concepts like collective responsibility. The Greens operate from consensus, so aren't usually going to speak outside of what they've decided together is the way to present things. They are definitely much more closed than they used to be, but that is largely because of the shit they got from the MSM in the past.

          We would definitely be better served with a more open and transparent political system, but I think to have that we need a shift from macho politics.

          • Pat 9.1.1.3.1

            Its not news to anybody but it lends credence to the meme"they do it too" and has led us to a place where the likes of Trump, Johnson et al can say anything and its dismissed as more political rhetoric….there was a time im sure when politicians said what they meant and had the courage of their convictions…and consequently the voting public had more confidence in what their vote meant

            • weka 9.1.1.3.1.1

              Hughes has in no way lied about his own politics or that of the Greens. There is a huge difference between respecting party unity and Trumpian politics. People who say that all politician lie are abdicating responsibility for useful political anaysis.

              I often hear the politics of MPs in their maiden speeches. This is why I'm not too worried about Shaw, he laid out where he stands right at the start.

          • The Chairman 9.1.1.3.2

            The Greens operate from consensus, so aren't usually going to speak outside of what they've decided together is the way to present things.

            Perhaps part of the reason for Gareth departing is so he can be more outspoken?

            • weka 9.1.1.3.2.1

              perhaps Winston Peters is sitting at home having a sherry.

              • The Chairman

                And your point is?

                Consider this if you wish, Gareth has just announced his departure, yet he's being more outspoken already. Could this be an expectation of more to come?

                • weka

                  My point is you're making shit up and concern trolling. No-one knows if Peters is having a sherry, and likewise you just pulled it out of thin air that Hughes is leaving so he can speak out more. He just described clearly why he is leaving and I wrote a post about.

                  See my mod comment above, and stay out of my posts for the next week.

  10. David Mac 11

    Steering a country must be a bit like steering a fully laden oil tanker. A tiny input can have immense repercussions. A turning circle of kilometres and brakes that take 20 minutes to result in a stop.

    We live in an accelerating world, remember when it took a blockbuster 12 months to come out on VHS? Younger people know nothing but this pace where a new phone is a relic in 18 months. This creates an appetite for fast obvious transformational change. We bash on, year to year touting…"Everything will be fabulous as soon as you vote us in next year". The rising super power China work with decade sized pieces.

    I don't think we should be doing much more than moving the oil tanker wheel more than a few degrees, monitoring what happens and expand on the sweet spots.

    Countries don't go from ugly duckling to swan overnight.

    • weka 11.1

      I would largely agree with this if it weren't for the extreme time pressures around climate change.

    • Stuart Munro. 11.2

      Ships don't have brakes, my friend.

      If we could get a process that net puts people into houses, instead of out of them, we would be heading in roughly the right direction.

      The commitment to that isn't there yet, and until it's happening, "left hand down a bit" won't quite suffice.

      • David Mac 11.2.1

        Yes, we have addressed the housing issue. We didn't move the wheel a few degrees and build on what worked. We constructed a hugely expensive new government department, wasted oodles of money and time, promised the earth and gave birth to Kiwibuild. Before it was even afloat the CEO had serious doubts and disembarked from the tanker as it chugged towards the rocks.

        • Stuart Munro. 11.2.1.1

          Housing is as much an economic as a construction issue. The decline in home ownership is a measure of rising poverty, and also reflects intemperate immigration policy. The neoliberal engines that have ground the faces of NZ's poor have not ceased to do so merely with the change of watch officers.

          Kiwibuild was neither fish nor fowl, and attempting to continue dysfunctional aspects like foreign companies building for offshore markets skewed it away from the necessary local focus.

          There are a lot of state 'CEO's to be rid of before the public service will function reliably, and until it does it won't deliver solutions.

        • David Mac 11.2.1.2

          Kiwibuild suited our appetite for bold transformational moves. It was great sound-bite fodder, Twyford said 100,000 homes 100,000 times.

          2 years on, offered the choice of having Kiwibuild or 500 new modern robust emergency housing apartments..I think we'd be better off if we acknowledged the stupidity of paying Viaduct penthouse apartment prices for tired motel units in the semi commercial districts in the less desirable locations of Auckland. 'Go and play on the Greenlane 5 ways Johnny.'

          I'm not suggesting we act slowly, I'm suggesting we do what works. If banning plastic bags at supermarkets earns some noticeable and valuable go forward, lets get all plastic packaging out of supermarkets. Watch those food producers move to change on their own coin.

          • Stuart Munro. 11.2.1.2.1

            I'm all for things working.

            But it astonishes me that a country that was once quietly notorious for its practical bent can no longer get houses built expeditiously.

            There's much to be said for careful incremental change – but that hasn't been the governance model in my lifetime – we've had drastic ideologically driven change, and it has sent poverty and inequality to unprecedented levels. I'd like to see solutions implemented with comparable enthusiasm and speed.

  11. The Chairman 12

    It's disappointing he's leaving. Another left voice from within lost.

    Wonder if he would have stayed if he was given a ministerial role or won the leadership? 

    Nevertheless, on a lighter note his "hey Clint" moment was a classic. 

  12. Blazer 13

    A near invisible M.P who won't be missed.

  13. mosa 14

    Reading Gareth’s comments i totally agree with him and i think it reflects the disillusionment in the wider Green party and beyond that the real change that is needed will not happen.

    This government has not and will not be able too make the bold decisions that are needed and if it secures a second term with the current ministers and members , there will just be incremental tinkering as that is their version of ” transformation “not the revolution that is sorely needed and Gareth talks about.

    His departure is regrettable but understandable.
    I hope he will be available for a new political movement that has too happen sooner rather than later.

    All the very best Gareth and thank you for serving.

  14. Exkiwiforces 15

    I could never get my head his campaign to send a Frigate down Sth when the Japs were conducting their so called “scientific whaling”, when the same time the Greens want to disband the RNZN’s Frigates and you are playing into the hands of the people like me who pro Frigate and pro blue Navy. As you can only have one or the other, but in saying I support his POV that something must done to protect the whales  at the time and the Southern Ocean environment must protected as it will so become the next “Grey Zone” like has now happened in the Sth China Sea.

    https://www.aspi.org.au/report/grey-zone-operations-and-maritime-domain

    I hope the Greens keep him on as mentor for future young Green MP’s like him who step up to plate as we are going to need theses youngsters to step up into future and this coming from someone you completely disagree with the Greens Defence Policy.

    If it wasn’t for that muppet Keith Locke and that other what’s her name muppet and it’s Defence Policy I would a proud supporter of the Greens.

    All the best Gareth for the future and the family must come first, thats from my own experience after 20 odd years in the Queens uniform in NZ and OZ Force.

     

     

Leave a Comment

Use WYSIWYG comments on next comment (inactive new feature)

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • DHB leadership renewed and strengthened
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says new appointments to DHBs represent a significant changing of the guard, with 13 new chairs including four Māori chairs. Today 76 appointments have been announced to complement elected board members, as well as eight elected members appointed as either chair or deputy chair.  Four ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Tabuteau to advance New Zealand’s trade and political interests with European partners
    Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau, is travelling to Germany, Poland, Austria, and Spain next week to bolster New Zealand’s political and trade relationships in Europe. While in Spain, Mr Tabuteau will represent New Zealand at the 14th Asia-Europe (ASEM) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Madrid. “New Zealand strongly supports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Kris Faafoi
    “I’ve spoken to Minister Faafoi, who has apologised for his poor handling of this issue,” Jacinda Ardern said. “I have confidence in Kris as a hardworking and effective Minister, but this should have been dealt with in a much clearer manner, and I’ve made my views on that very clear ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tonga-New Zealand Joint Ministerial Forum
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters met with Tongan Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa in Wellington today. The pair signed a Statement of Partnership setting out joint priorities for cooperation out to 2023.  “We welcomed Prime Minister Tu'i'onetoa on his first visit to New Zealand as Prime Minister. Tonga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Shooting in Kurow
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash says his sympathies are with the family of a man who died after being shot by Police in Kurow. “Initial reports are that Police were called by a family member to help the man who was threatening to harm himself,” Mr Nash says. “However ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt supports Southland farmers in sustainability
    Healthier waterways, better productivity and farmer wellbeing are front and centre in a new project involving more than 1000 Southland farmers and growers. Minister of Agriculture Damien O’Connor today announced that the Thriving Southland Change and Innovation Project is the first region-wide extension programme supported by the $229 million Sustainable ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Flood of support for Top of the South catchment
    Work to look after nature and restore freshwater quality in Te Hoiere/Pelorus River catchment is getting a significant boost, thanks to new Government funding support Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage announced in Canvastown today. “Every New Zealander should be able to swim in their local river without getting sick, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Eight Queen’s Counsel appointed under new criterion
    Eight Queen’s Counsel have been appointed under a process that includes the new criterion of a commitment to improving access to justice, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. “The new criterion was included this year. It emphasises that excellence and leadership in the profession can be seen through a wider, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Major expansion for Wellington’s Onslow College
    Onslow College in Wellington will get 20 new classrooms for more than 400 students, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. The much-needed investment will relieve growth pressure the school has been experiencing for some time. Seven existing classrooms which have deteriorated over time will also be replaced, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America
    More than 250 young New Zealanders will add international experience to their education, thanks to the latest Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Latin America (PMSLA), Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to improve competitiveness and transparency in the retail fuel market
    Consumers will benefit from a more competitive, transparent retail fuel market as a result of changes the Government will be making in response to the findings of the Commerce Commission’s study of the fuel sector. “We accept the Commission’s findings and, as the Prime Minister has said, we’re ready to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • More cancer medicines for more people
    Five new cancer medicines have now been funded this year, meaning thousands of people have more treatment options PHARMAC has today announced that it has approved two new medicines for funding – fulvestrant for breast cancer and olaparib for ovarian cancer. This follows earlier decisions on advanced lung cancer treatment alectinib, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government acts to sort out electoral ‘coin toss’ problem
    The Minister of Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the Government will consider making changes to local electoral legislation before the 2022 elections to fix the problems that have arisen where elections are settled by a coin toss.  The Minister says the recount process in the Murupara- Galatea ward at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ to Join IMO Convention to Reduce Ship Emissions
    New Zealand will sign up to new international maritime regulations to reduce ship emissions and lift air quality around ports and harbours, Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter announced today. Subject to completion of the Parliamentary treaty examination process, New Zealand will sign up to Annex VI of MARPOL, an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bill to empower urban development projects
    New legislation to transform our urban areas and create sustainable, inclusive and thriving communities will tomorrow be introduced to Parliament, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said. “The Urban Development Bill gives Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities the tools it needs to partner with councils, communities, mana whenua and private developers to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Early Learning Action Plan to kickstart long term change
    Today’s launch of He taonga te Tamaiti: Every child a taonga: The Early Learning Action Plan 2019-2029 provides the foundation for long-lasting changes to early learning, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says.   “Early learning will be one of the Government’s top education priorities going into 2020,” Chris Hipkins said.   ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Climate change lens on major Government decisions
    Major decisions made by the Government will now be considered under a climate change lens, Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. “Cabinet routinely considers the effects of its decisions on human rights, the Treaty of Waitangi, rural communities, the disability community, and gender – now climate change will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Tertiary Education Commission Board announced
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins today announced the appointment of Māori education specialist Dr Wayne Ngata and Business NZ head Kirk Hope to the Board of the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). Dr Alastair MacCormick has been reappointed for another term. “Wayne Ngata, Kirk Hope and Alastair MacCormick bring a great deal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Next phase of Pike River recovery underway in time for Christmas
    The next phase of the Pike River Re-entry project is underway, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little says. “Fresh air will be pumped into the Pike River Mine drift this week, following acceptance of the plan for re-entry beyond the 170m barrier by New Zealand’s independent health and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Insurance contracts to become easier to understand and fairer for consumers
    New Zealand consumers will have greater certainty about their insurance cover when they need to make claims as a result of proposed government changes. “Insurance is vitally important in supporting consumers and businesses to be financially resilient when unexpected events happen,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Kris Faafoi said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • A new opportunity for Ngāpuhi collective and regional negotiations
    The Crown is providing an opportunity for the hapu of Ngāpuhi to rebuild its framework from the ground up for collective negotiations to deal with its historical Treaty claims, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little and Minister for Māori Development Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The Crown is also ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Referendums Framework Bill passes third reading
    A Bill enabling referendums to be held with the 2020 General Election has passed its third reading. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Act is important for upholding the integrity of New Zealand’s electoral process. “The Government has committed to holding a referendum on legalising recreational cannabis at the next ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Referendums website and initial cannabis Bill launched
    The first release of public information on the two referendums to be held at next year’s General Election was made today with an informative new Government website going live. Additionally, the draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill has been released, showing the strict controls on cannabis that will apply if ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government to ban foreign donations
    The Government is taking action to protect New Zealand from foreign interference in our elections by banning foreign donations to political parties and candidates, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. Legislation will be introduced to Parliament this afternoon and passed under urgency. “There’s no need for anyone other than New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Governments and tech converge to strengthen joint response to online terror events
    Governments and tech companies are holding a two-day workshop, hosted by YouTube/Google in Wellington, to test the Christchurch Call Shared Crisis Response Protocol. The workshop aims to refine and strengthen the response in the event of a terrorist attack with online implications. Companies, governments, civil society experts and NGOs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Cancer Control Agency to drive improved care
    The new independent Cancer Control Agency has formally opened today, delivering on the Government’s plan to improve cancer care in New Zealand.         Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Health David Clark marked the occasion by announcing the membership of the Advisory Council that will be supporting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supporting small business to prosper
    Small businesses who deal with government departments are set to be paid faster and have improved cash flow as a result, under a new strategy released today. The Government is backing recommendations from the Small Business Council (SBC) and has agreed to implement three initiatives immediately to support business and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Bill has biggest education changes in decades
    The Education and Training Bill 2019, introduced in Parliament today, proposes the biggest education changes in decades and is an important step towards improving success for all our learners, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “The Bill’s rewrite of education legislation is long overdue. Indeed one Education Act, parts of which ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Bali Democracy Forum to focus on democracy and inclusivity
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Bali to represent New Zealand at the 12th Bali Democracy Forum that will be held on the 5-6 December. “The Forum is a valuable opportunity for Asia-Pacific countries to share experiences and best practice in building home-grown democracy and fostering ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Innovative technology and tools to better manage freedom camping
    A package of new and expanded technology and other tools will encourage responsible camping and help communities and local councils better manage freedom camping this summer, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. “Our Government has been investing to improve the freedom camping experience for everyone because we want to support ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Improving wellbeing by understanding our genes
    The government is laying the groundwork to understanding our genes – work that can help us tackle some of our biggest health challenges, like heart disease and diabetes, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. $4.7 million has been invested in the Genomics Aotearoa Rakeiora programme. The programme will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government investing to future proof school property
    Nearly every state schools will receive a capital injection next year valued at $693 per student to bring forward urgent school property improvements, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today.  The one-off cash injection is the first project to be announced from the Government’s infrastructure package ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Infrastructure investments to be brought forward
    The Government has decided to bring forward major investments in New Zealand’s infrastructure to future proof the economy. “Cabinet has agreed to a significant boost to infrastructure investment. I have directed the Treasury to help bring together a package of projects that can be brought into the Government’s short and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Future-proofing New Zealand
    It is a great pleasure to be with you today in Whanganui. Like the Prime Minister I grew up with the TV clip of Selwyn Toogood booming “What do you say Whanganui, the money or the bag?” to an unsuspecting ‘It’s in the Bag’ audience. For those under the age ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s newest Great Walk, the Paparoa track opened – an asset for the West Coast
    New Zealand’s newest Great Walk, the Paparoa Track, was officially opened in Blackball today by the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage alongside the family members of the Pike 29 and Ngāti Waewae.  Local mayors and MP for the West Coast Hon Damien O’Connor were also in attendance. “Paparoa National Park ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • P-8A Poseidon base works commence
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark turned the first sod of earth on the infrastructure works for the new P-8A Poseidon fleet at RNZAF Base Ohakea today. “The Coalition Government’s investment in Ohakea will ensure the Royal New Zealand Air Force can manage, maintain and task the new fleet efficiently ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Launch of the National Emergency Management Agency
    Civil Defence Minister Hon Peeni Henare today announced the establishment of the new National Emergency Management Agency from 1 December 2019.  The National Emergency Management Agency will replace the Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management. It will be an autonomous departmental agency, hosted by the Department of the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NASA 2020 Internship applications open
    New Zealand tertiary students with top grades and a passion for space will once again be offered the opportunity to work with the world’s best and brightest at NASA, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Recipients of the New Zealand Space Scholarship are nominated by the Ministry of Business, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago