Herald’s “democracy lockout” campaign – pick it up!

Written By: - Date published: 5:44 pm, March 13th, 2010 - 5 comments
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On Monday this week the front page of the Auckland Herald’s print edition announced that the paper was going to run a campaign to fight what it called “the lockout of democracy” in the Super City.

There was nothing on the Herald website all week, which seems odd if it was a real campaign.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, there were a few articles under  a banner heading on Page 2. On Wednesday and Thursday, Rodney Hide and Steven Joyce had weighed in on the op-ed page, with Joyce again active  on the news pages  on Thursday.

Today we have an editorial, which starts:

Throughout the week, a Herald series entitled “Super City – the public lockout” has focused on the seven council controlled organisations proposed for the Auckland region. The starting point was a belief that these represented a fundamental shift in the proposed democratic constitution of the Super City.

Seeking to refute that view and allay widespread concerns have been the Local Government Minister, Rodney Hide, and the Transport Minister, Steven Joyce. Their response was unconvincing.

And ends:

…the Government has hinted at minor changes to make the CCOs more accountable to the council and ratepayers. But there has been no sign that it might, say, shelve the transport CCO or limit the waterfront agency to development issues. It seems resolved to impose this model on Auckland.Better sense must prevail. If not, Aucklanders will, indeed, feel locked out of the major decisions on their city’s future. It is hard to think of the Super City starting life under a more serious handicap.

That sounds like a whimp out.

Come on Herald – where are the on-line polls, the website and Facebook sites, the endless stories from different journos about the views of Aucklanders and the problems that are likely to surface with what you have rightly called a “democracy lockout?”

We know you can do it; you certainly did with it your campaign against the Electoral Finance Bill.

The right to have a democratic say is priceless and fragile – remember Abe Lincoln’s concluding prayer at Gettysburg that “government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from this earth”.

It will perish in Auckland – and it was your call. Time to pick it up.

5 comments on “Herald’s “democracy lockout” campaign – pick it up!”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    I suspect that they’re having difficulty reconciling the “Democracy Under Attack” campaign that they ran in support of NACT and now having to admit that NACT are actually a greater threat to democracy than the EFB or Labour.

  2. lprent 2

    I saw the editorial. However I haven’t seen much else. I couldn’t even figure out where that editorial was online

    It does seem somewhat pathetic.

  3. Zaphod Beeblebrox 3

    Calm down, there’s still eight months to go. An editorial a week and McCarten every Sunday alone for that period are going to be damaging enough. The only ones defending Hide, Key and Joyce at the moment are themselves.

  4. Julie 4

    There might be 8 months until the election, but in fact there’s a lot less time than that to determine whether there is any point in having an election. We could have the leftest mayor and council in the world but if the CCO model goes ahead then they will also be one of the most pointless and powerless local govt bodies in the world.

  5. Jum 5

    Yeah, come on herald, with a small h; key, with a small k, was pleased to go to Franklin for a national, with a small n, fundraising lunch with a group of grovelling business turncoats paying $95 for a chance to kiss his ring, but key wasn’t prepared to visit Pukekohe in November to answer a simple question from the Democracy4Franklin team and many townspeople – Why? Why was Franklin being forced into supercity, forced to forgo a democratic vote – one person one vote – all of Franklin. Protestors came to that event. All they want is a district wide vote – if it’s in favour of being included in supercity, then that is the vote from the people in Franklin and that’s the end of it.

    But jkeyll and hide and joyce are terrified of allowing it – what does that tell us about their faith in it working. The buyers have their boots on the throat of this weasely government and intend to force through the bulk sale of our remaining assets; like mein kampf, if only we’d read roger douglas’ unfinished business a little more carefully, but human greed always puts blinkers on the truth.
    This fight has to go countrywide – the herald has fallen on its sword and betrayed its vow of objectivity. We need more information spreading out there.

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