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I’ll book the billboards, you ring Roger Kerr for a donation

Written By: - Date published: 3:53 pm, February 26th, 2010 - 26 comments
Categories: auckland supercity - Tags: , ,

Human Rights Commission: Super city consultation a mockery

Press Release by Human Rights Commission at 11:42 am, 26 Feb 2010

The short time frame of nine weeks (including the Christmas-New Year holiday break) for submissions to the third Auckland governance bill makes a mockery of democracy, according to the Human Rights Commission.

I wonder if the Herald will run with “Democracy Under Attack!!!”?

26 comments on “I’ll book the billboards, you ring Roger Kerr for a donation ”

  1. gobsmacked 1

    It’s outrageous!

    So ACT’s John Boscawen has organised a protest march in support of the Human Rights Commission.

    Full details here:


  2. Good on the HRC for saying officially what a lot of Jafas have been saying.

    The time frame was way too short. The Bill is about 200 pages long and interracts with a number of other Acts and policies. The only way to understand the full implication was to have the Bill and the affected document in front of you. The pre Christmas release meant that the two months allowed is more like two weeks and this is waay waay too short a timeframe.

    They should have taken 4 years as suggested. Instead of that we get rushed legislation and effectively the corportisation of our democracy by stealth.

    Where are the supposed defenders of democracy that were so prominant two years ago?

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      In parliament, trying to make sure they stay there.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      The corporatisation of Auckland hasn’t been done by stealth – NACT have been quite open about their legislating away our democracy starting with the right of Auckland to have a referendum – you know, the one that would have stopped the dictators in their tracks.

  3. BLiP 3

    If you care about:

    * the corporatisation of our local democracy

    * the loss of local voice

    * moves to make it easier to sell the Ports of Auckland and other assets

    * unfair boundaries and inadequate representation

    * undermining protections for the Waitakere Ranges

    * tokenistic representation for Maori

    * the rushed and undemocratic process the Government is using to push the super city through

    then join this lunchtime rally and show the Government Aucklanders won’t take the super city lying down.

    Date: . . . . . . . . . . . . Tuesday, 02 March 2010
    Time: . . . . . . . . . . . . 12:00 – 14:00
    Location: . . . . . . . . . Quality Hotel Barrycourt, 20 Gladstone Road, Parnell, Auckland

  4. Herodotus 4

    Sorry to bring this up but did not the foreshore and seabed also breach this, and did not the UN send a delegation to NZ about 5 years ago and we received a “fail” report on our HR. If the UN /human rights points the finger at NZ either we are the only country listening and the entities have to be seen to be the policing deficiencies as they see them to a country that may/will listen or the world (read UN/HRC) has lost all relevence.
    Does not our tax system/social welfare or any other countries breach the Human Rights as not all individuals are treated the same?
    As long as there are no asset sales and Metro/Man Water are not used as an alternative to creat extra rates, for me One Auckland is no different than in the late 80’s when all the boroughs were amalgamated. Why expect some say in affairs many have to be part of the real world “WE HAVE A SAY but NO DECISION ABILITY”.
    Labour donated a bomb and the Nats just lite the fuse.

  5. gobsmacked 5

    But Rodney Hide strongly supports the Human Rights Commission. He says they have earned his respect. Says Rodney:

    “They stick to the principles rather than the politics.”


    People, let’s all march in support of Boscawen, Hide and the Human Rights Commission. Save democracy in Auckland!

  6. Rex Widerstrom 6

    I’m more cynical than most, and I’m not beyond a bit of chutzpah. But I seriously and honestly don’t know how people can (quite rightly) damn the over-riding of democractic processes and institutions by arrogant, dictatorial hubristic politicians and then become arrogant, dictatorial hubristic politicians (or at least keep quiet while others on their “side” behave that way).

    Once again I’m forced to conclude: do away with MMP, introduce STV, then go hell-for-leather promoting the idea of independent MPs, each one answerable directly to voters. Till parties are seen as the anachronism they are (the first Minister, the Earl of Danbury, was appointed by King Charles in 1675) and fade into obscurity, loyalty to the gang will always outweigh duty to the public.

    Well I can dream, can’t I? *sigh*

    • Marty G 6.1

      if you don’t have strong parties you have pork barrel politics like in the states and an elected government can’t advance the agenda it was elected on (or the things it wasn’t elected on, to be fair).

      • Rex Widerstrom 6.1.1

        Why must there be an “agenda”? I don’t want a representative with an agenda, I want one with an open mind who’ll listen to (and participate) in debate and make a decision which s/he genuinely feels to be best for the greatest number given the circumstances at the time. Arrogance can and does lead to poor decision making, but so can high principles: “We promised tax cuts and that got us elected, so we have to deliver even though the bottom just dropped out of the economy”.

        Yes there can be an element of pork barreling but I think NZ’s size, and the relatively tiny government spend, mitigate against too much of that. It’s not like we’re going to get Northland and Southland fighting over the siting of a stealth bomber factory.

    • eszett 6.2

      Last time I checked Rodney was answerable directly to the voters of Epsom. MMP is not the problem here,

      • Rex Widerstrom 6.2.1

        And I’ll bet, therefore, that Epsom will be well looked after in any changes.

        But that’s not the point… Rodney is just one person. It’s the entire system that’s rotten. Politicians have grown ever more distant from the wishes and control of their electors, and this is an example of the outcome of that trend.

        If we don’t change the system we somehow magically change the people we elect to populate it. Legislation vs human nature… I know which one I’d find easier to fix.

    • r0b 6.3

      and then become arrogant, dictatorial hubristic politicians

      There’s your problem Rex. Key, Hide and that lot have not become arrogant, dictatorial hubristic politicians, it’s what they’ve always been. They just managed to hide it from most of us, until they weaselled their way in to power.

  7. A lot of people only became aware of key parts of this legislation once the various councils had got their professional staff to analyse it. The ARC’s submission is particularly damning of the bill – for example.

    The fact that what should have been just a “technical bill” can get 800 submissions or so is quite amazing. And many of the matter pointed out in submissions from organisations such as councils show that there are contradictory and bizarre parts of the legislation – clearly a sign of it being rushed.

    If the Government had wanted to do this bill properly they would have extensively consulted with the councils before releasing it. Instead they have botched things completely, trying to undertake a local government reorganisation that should have taken 4-5 years into 2 years. This issue won’t be going away, and Auckland local government will probably be rooted for at least another three years.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.1

      Instead they have botched things completely, trying to undertake a local government reorganisation that should have taken 4-5 years into 2 years.

      And in 4 to 5 years we’re going to be paying for it in decreased council services, increased rates and the loss of our assets as the non-elected controllers sell everything off at fire sale prices.

    • You are right Jarbury.

      They should have stuck to technical changes. Instead of this they tried to sneak really significant changes through.

      For instance they tried to undermine the protection given to the Waitakere Ranges by the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area Act 2008 and by the Local Government Amendment Act 1992.

      They did not have to do this. They could have parked both issues for later so that proper consultation could have occurred and the inclusion of these particular provisions suggests that they wanted to sneak them through. Who knows how many other changes are being snuck through under the fog caused by the haste.

      The ARC submission is particularly good and when you read it you think why arn’t we taking a bit of time before making a decision that could fuck up the largest city in the country?

    • Armchair Critic 7.3

      Three years is mighty optimistic of you.
      I’m picking at least five and probably more like ten years, given the magnitude of the changes from the status quo, as well as how poorly thought through the changes are.

  8. sean14 8

    Now you clamour to listen to the HRC! Pity you weren’t doing so when the EFA was introduced.

    • Marty G 8.1

      I’d have to check to be absolutely sure but I’m pretty certain that The Standard started after the HRC had given its backing to the EFA.

      Oh, you don’t remember that eh? Yup, the HRC raised a number of valid problems with the EFA and I, for one, agreed with them. Labour made the recommended changes.

  9. It would have been nice if the ARC had publicised their actual submission a bit more, so that people could have read it and included important bits of it in what they had written. This was done to some extent, with the Waitakere Ranges issue and the general lack of detail for Local Boards.

    However, there are some ugly ugly things in relation to the set-up of Auckland Transport. The NZ Herald blew the lid on the fact that all its meetings would be in secret, but there are plenty of other messy stuff in there to basically ensure Auckland Transport ends up doing what Steven Joyce wants it to do and not what the Auckland Council wants it to do.

    I guess this is Joyce’s revenge on Mike Lee for calling his pet project from Puhoi-Wellsford a “holiday highway”.

  10. wilbur 10

    um, the greens being the biggest opponent of the super city? the only party that actually read the bill, and so discovered that on page 163 that Auckland’s forests were being lost?

    while we’re on the topic of human rights, the only party that supported the UDHR when Ahmed Zaoui was locked away? The party who’s MPs were investigated by the SIS and by the anti terror squad due to their human rights campaigns?

    sorry, maybe i’ve completely missed the joke here, but i don’t quite get how grouping the greens with Dunne, the Nats and Mao makes any sense AT ALL.

  11. peterthepeasant 11

    May be, coming from Ireland, he does not understand our culture?

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