web analytics

Little’s Electoral Bill a curate’s egg – good in parts

Written By: - Date published: 1:51 pm, December 4th, 2019 - 11 comments
Categories: Andrew Little, campaigning, elections, electoral commission, political parties, social media lolz, spin - Tags:

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve always liked Punch magazine’s famous cartoon “True humility” where the curate assures his bishop who notices his egg is bad that “parts of it are excellent.”

Most discussion on Little’s Bill has focused on the bad bits regarding donations. The good bit requires all political ads online to be attributed.

The only effect of the ban of foreign donations to candidates or political parties over $50 will be to make the life of political party secretaries even more difficult than it already is to manage the minefield of convoluted electoral law. Party secretaries now have to scrutinise any donation over $50 to make sure that it did not come from a foreign source.

In reality this provision will be easy to work around for donors. So Little’s rushed Bill is more of a public relations exercise than a real attempt to improve the law. A major fault when it comes to foreign influence is to limit the scope to political parties and candidates. Lord Ashcroft didn’t fly out to New Zealand in his private jet twice immediately before elections here just to have a cup of tea with John Key. I believe he spoke the truth when he told journalists he didn’t donate to the National Party, but he runs a huge polling company and would likely have given them considerable assistance directly or indirectly. I made this point in my submission to the select Committee.

Henry Cooke of Stuff describes the Bill as “Good politics but terrible lawmaking”and suggests that we need another Royal Commission like the one in 1987 that brought in MMP.  He may  not be aware that that Commission canvassed the matter thoroughly and recommended State funding of political parties. It is the answer and support for it is growing.

The good bit in the Bill is the requirement for all political advertising on the internet media to carry attribution. Hopefully that will limit the Cambridge Analytica stye of under-the-radar advertising used in the Brexit referendum.

11 comments on “Little’s Electoral Bill a curate’s egg – good in parts ”

  1. ianmac 1

    Someone suggested that every voter be given a taxpayer voucher of $xxx to give to the party of their choice. Hard on small parties but….

  2. Stuart Munro. 2

    One of the failures of MMP has been that it has suppressed the emergence of genuinely independent MPs, with a consequent loss of freshness and dynamism to the country as a whole. With contemporary parties so compromised they cannot even pass an internationally normal tax like a CGT due to paid plutocratic resistance, it is not appropriate that the public fund them.

    And, the $50 limit is a nonsense – either foreigners should be allowed to donate or they should not. Guess which a firm majority of New Zealanders prefers – and since they prefer it, wtf is a $50 loophole doing there?

  3. Incognito 3

    Good post, thanks.

    A few people don’t seem to know the meaning of the word attribution.

    So, please allow me to take this opportunity because I believe that we should apply the same standards that we hold politicians to also to ourselves.

    Attribution may refer to:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attribution

    All three meanings appear regularly in Moderation notes here on TS 😉

  4. Karol121 4

    It does seem to be a form of political medicine quickly proposed through Mr Little to help alleviate the negative symptoms being experienced by many of us in relation to the feeling that democratic process, as a carpet mat, is being jerked at as we attempt to stand firm on it.

    We may have just been able to swallowed the eggy sulfur smelling pill in relation to Dr Feelgood excuses from New Zealand First Foundation types pertaining to New Zealand First contributory funding, and we may well have left it to digest and to deal with New Zealand First at the voting polls next year if the pill continues to cause adverse reactions after metabolising.

    But this party, party, party approach to funding appears to be an habitual, widespread activity across major parties as well.

    Perhaps NZ Labour has never gone down this track, but who really knows? It's occurred with the Australian Labor Party (ALP).

    Incognito raises a valid point too, in relation to interpretation and definition. At reading, and after the Bill gets passed (if it gets passed), there will have to be a crystal clear understanding of just what attribution is, so that it is defined, read and understood in context. It's not always as easy nor as straightforward as learning ABC's nor lesson 101 of 123.

    On political parties being funded for slush so as to facilitate self promotion in the faces of the public, such as shoulder rubbing photo shoots and gleeful whoopies, I personally don't have a problem with this.

    I am sure that funds specifically applied can bring many a satisfactory outcome irrespective of whether or not it is a form of feigned or contrived presentation to bolster eroding confidence, or even something as simple as simply Flash Harry antics.

    My only concern with any slushy slurry of funds, appearing to be sourced from and perhaps applied to grey area environments, is how much of it might be covertly used to target opponents or other less desirable or sympathetic to a particular party's overall objectives and which might ultimately only satisfy funders who may not show up as identifiable sources or even paints on radar.

  5. Buster12 5

    Lol. Dreams are free i guess.

  6. Descendant Of Smith 6

    Wealthy philanthropy and why we don't need it. I still think a turnover tax is the simplest solution.

    "The wealthiest Americans are often celebrated for their prolific giving, but is it altruism or is it all just hype? Hasan dissects how the ultra-rich use philanthropy to get richer, distract from the injustices on which they built their fortunes, and dictate politics and policy."

    Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj on Netflix:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mS9CFBlLOcg

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Worsening housing crisis must prompt action
    A growing public housing waiting list and continued increase of house prices must be urgently addressed by Government, Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson said today. ...
    10 hours ago
  • Twenty highlights of 2020
    As we welcome in the new year, our focus is on continuing to keep New Zealanders safe and moving forward with our economic recovery. There’s a lot to get on with, but before we say a final goodbye to 2020, here’s a quick look back at some of the milestones ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Better care for babies with tongue-tie
    Babies born with tongue-tie will be assessed and treated consistently under new guidelines released by the Ministry of Health, Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. Around 5% to 10% of babies are born with a tongue-tie, or ankyloglossia, in New Zealand each year. At least half can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prisoner disorder event at Waikeria Prison over
    The prisoner disorder event at Waikeria Prison is over, with all remaining prisoners now safely and securely detained, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says. The majority of those involved in the event are members of the Mongols and Comancheros. Five of the men are deportees from Australia, with three subject to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Pre-departure COVID-19 test for travellers from the UK and the US from 15 January
    Travellers from the United Kingdom or the United States bound for New Zealand will be required to get a negative test result for COVID-19 before departing, and work is underway to extend the requirement to other long haul flights to New Zealand, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins confirmed today. “The new PCR test requirement, foreshadowed last ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago