Mana a victory for the Left

Written By: - Date published: 10:44 am, June 26th, 2011 - 177 comments
Categories: by-election, hone harawira, mana-party - Tags:

A victory for Mana or a victory for Labour? Actually, it was a win for both, and a win for the Left. The losers in Te Tai Tokerau were the true enemies of the Left – the kupapa Maori Party and National. Turia put up a weak candidate hoping to concentrate the anti-Hone vote behind Davis. Now, the Maori Party faces a three-way fight it can’t win.

On the numbers, Hone Harawira’s share of the vote went from 58% to 48%. Kelvin Davis’ from 29% to 41%. That’s basically a 10% swing against Hone. Labour did well with its formidable organisational capabilities in a tough electorate for organising. Mana did well too despite Harawira’s reduced majority. David beat Goliath with zero resources and an intelligent rebrand of Harawira showing a side that has been missed by the msm in the past. The Maori Party was slaughtered. The seat is safely Mana’s now. The general election will favour Mana: Labour won’t be able to dedicate the same resources to the fight and turn-out will be higher.

(rich of Tariana Turia to mock the low-turnout in TTT. There were less than 8,000 votes cast in her by-election in 2004)

I think some in Labour probably really wanted to kill Mana at its birth and thought they could. My fellow author here, Mike Smith, would be in that camp. With no offence to Mike, that’s FPP thinking.

It’s good for Labour to have a true Left party on its outside. As this election has evidenced, Mana will take bugger all votes off Labour but it will take lots of votes from the Maori Party. That’s good for Labour – better that those votes are held by a party that can only ever work with Labour than one that will prefer to work with National. Mana will also bring in a lot of the enrolled non-vote: 20+% of New Zealanders don’t vote and the evidence from turnout in different electorates shows that the lion’s share are the disaffected poor.

The Maori Party has gone from 12,000 votes to 1,000. That shows how broken their brand is, and how much their support has always been personal – which means they’ll be stuffed when Turia and Sharples retire. Turia is 67 and in poor health. Sharples is 70 next month. Both wanted to retire this term but they couldn’t because they didn’t want to hand the party to Harawira and they especially can’t with Harawira now an opponent.

Turia, who didn’t want to put a candidate, killed Solomon Tipene’s campaign in a desperate bid to have Labour win and strangle Mana. John Key even tried to put his weight behind the Davis. It is a slap in the face to both Turia and Key that Davis didn’t win. The voters didn’t listen to them.

Now, National and the Maori Party’s nightmare is going to come true. The other Maori Party seats will be three way fights, especially the ones held by the Maori Party. Rahui Katene is going to lose Te Tai Tonga even without Mana. Annette Skyes will split the vote in Waiariki, probably costing Te Ururoa Flavell his seat. Pita Sharples could lose to Shane Jones if Jones gets his finger out and a strong Mana candidate (Willy Jackson?) stands. Only Turia is safe. Ikaroa-Rawhiti will be interesting too.

Remember how the Maori Party said working with National would be ‘mana-enhancing’. Looks pretty ironic now, eh?

After the election, we can expect Mana to have 3 to 5 seats. They could be crucial in a Labour-Green coalition having the numbers to govern. I sure hope that Labour has been talking to Matt McCarten behind the scenes. It’s one thing to fight in public, it’s another to forget that you’re basically on the same side and to keep the underlying relationship working.

For National, Mana is real trouble. It is likely that the election will see at best two Maori Party MPs returned. Peter Dunne is in big trouble in Ohariu. And ACT is failing to fire under Don Brash. That means National is going to need something pretty damn near a majority to govern.

The scenarios were neither Labour nor National can form a workable coalition with the numbers to pass legislation just became a lot more likely.

177 comments on “Mana a victory for the Left ”

  1. millsy 1

    To be honest, I dont think Hone is the man to lead a left party. In my mind he will always be Maori first, and left/socialist second.

    Whoever will lead the left is not among the current lot of figures at the moment.

    • Bored 1.1

      I cannot forget Hones comments about not wanting his children to become attached to pakeha partners, pure racism. It is a stance that has been and still is mirrored by many pakeha parents, a deep and lasting scar on our society. Hone might have set a better example, and as a leftist whilst I welcome his victory I am aware of the spots on the leopard.

      • North 1.1.1

        Bored……… define as “pure racism” Hone’s comment re his kids and Pakeha partners. You even admit that you can’t get over it.

        In the same post you acknowledge an equivalent sense long-held by Pakeha parents.

        Strange that we’ve known about that long-held sense for donkeys’ years yet we’ve never castigated Pakeha parents for “pure racism”.

        Seems like we Pakeha are very, very sensitive about racism when we’re on the humiliating end of it but pretty unmindful that Maori have suffered it more or less stoically forever.

        The picture reminds me pretty much of the schoolyard bully when the tables are turned. He/she pushes and shoves and bashes and bangs then finally someone hits back. Schoolyard bully runs off home in tears – “Mum, so and so hit me……..”.

        In terms of common justice it has to be wrong for the schoolyard bully to stubbornly maintain the “right” NOT to get over it and paint him/herself as the all-time victim……….surely ?

        Please don’t imagine I’m addressing you personally. I’m not. I’m making a general point that it’s unfair to judge others without regard to their experiences, without empathy. At its worst that’s a charter for the bully.

        • Bored

          Nice analogy North, and maybe there is a lot of truth in what you say. For me I have long since reached the point where I have no tolerance of racism by any party, the misdeads of forbears might make an equal response attractive, but as they say two wrongs do not make a right. The cycle must be broken,utu is not an option. Aroha on the other hand is.

          • Adele

            Teenaa koe, Bored

            Then by your own words act. Aroha to all – including the racist.

            • Bored

              As said Adele, he gets my best regards, and I am glad he won. But as said originally I am aware of the spots on the leopard, which need to be heeded.

        • Anna

          Fantastically well-said, North. I was nodding all the way through your post. You’ve summed it up entirely.

        • Bored

          Actually North, reading what you said again I will run another line past you….I am a pakeha immigrant, when I was a child my best mate at school was West Indian. He got given shit and I found it offensive. When I arrived here it was “punch a Pom a day”. That was not nice to be on the recieving end of. I have a chunk of Irish ancestry, several times I have had Irish people make disparaging and offensive comments to me on the assumption (mistaken) that I am English. I find that deeply offensive. In 1981 I got hidings from the cops for protesting about black rights in South Africa. I know from personal experience how racism and such mindlessness feels. I dont like it, and I dont tolerate it in anybody.

          The school yard bully analogy only goes so far, backing him up only stops him doing it. You can bet your bottom dollar that he does not change his mind, only stops doing things overtly. An sympathy for the victim only goes so far when the victim decides to take his own back and act in a similar manner. So whilst I understand the history I wont make any exceptions for any racism out of some misguided sense of guilt.

          [lprent: North managed to annoy me by hitting one of the self-martyrdom offenses. So I obliged him with a permanent ban – essentially for being an idiot and not finding out more about the people here. He was insulting our right-wingers by thinking they were Labour members or supporters (as a Labour member, I also found that to be quite offensive). Our left of Labour wingers by considering them to be Labour members as well. Seeing racist remarks where there were none (within the scope of moderation). Such a sensitive soul – he should deal with the ones that just get moderated away. And so on. Generally making far too much work for me as a moderator.

          As a newbie to the world of social media, I think that he needs to learn to read the blogs for a while rather than ignorantly blustering without any understanding. ]

          • Jenny

            “I know from personal experience how racism and such mindlessness feels. I dont like it, and I dont tolerate it in anybody……”

            “…..So whilst I understand the history I wont make any exceptions for any racism out of some misguided sense of guilt.”


            I also don’t tolerate racism from anyone, but Bored I can honestly say that though I was born in this country and have lived my whole life here, I share many of your experiences. Racism and cultural identity are sensitive things to talk about and people get easily offended.

            In cases of outright racism that we witness like your schoolyard friend or on the world stage apartheid, it is easy to act and take sides.

            But sometimes even the best of us turn an eye to dodgy behaviour by those in our group, that look quite different to people outside that group.

            For instance how would you feel as if your government put the interests of foreign and local commercial and mining companies with interests in the seabed and foreshore over the traditional rights of “your” iwi.

            How would we feel if the same government and party deliberately refused to ratify a United Nations agreement on indigenous people’s rights that precluded you from legally being able to defend yourselves from the same local and foreign commercial and mining companies with interests in your traditional fishing grounds or shellfish beds.

            How would you feel if when you raised a large movement protesting these matters the government rather than receiving you, decided to honor a sheep instead.

            How would you feel if the leader of the same political party expressed an opinion that he would work with you, if you had white MPs in your parliamentary party.

            You mightn’t say anything, but how would you feel?

            A lot of what is done by our own group we chose to ignore.

            If Hone Harawira was reported as saying that he would only work with “non-whites” there would be an outcry. Yet when Phil Goff reportedly says something similar There is no loud denunciations from all and sundry and definitely no calls for him to apologise. Not even any questions to ask him to clarify his views.

            Like the fish in the sea unaware of the water around it. We don’t notice an ocean of double standards. But for someone standing outside – the water is all they see.

      • Lanthanide 1.1.2

        What Hone said is that he would feel “uncomfortable”, and specifically it was about one of his children bringing home someone white.

        I’m sure if you had children and they brought home someone of a group that you didn’t see eye to eye with, you would feel “uncomfortable” at first, too.

        As usual with Hone, the MSM blew it out of all proportion and mis-quoted him.

        • Jenny

          “As usual with Hone, the MSM blew it out of all proportion and mis-quoted him.”


          The same treatment of course not being dished out to “Non-Maori” politicians for similar outrageous off the cuff comments. (See comments above.)

      • Hennie van der Merwe 1.1.3

        Being relatively new to NZ political scene I would like to find out why there a 7 Maori electoral seats?
        Does this mean that only Maori can vote in these elections?
        Does one have to be Maori to be elected?
        If the above is correct does it then mean that Maori voters have two votes in a general election or do they have to choose where to cast their vote?

        For a newcomer this is very confusing – please enlighten me?

        • The Voice of Reason

          As I understand it, Hennie, anyone can enroll in a maori seat and anyone can be a candidate. But it is an either/or option. If you are on the maori roll, you cannot be also on the roll for a general seat. If I was living in, say, National held Clutha or Epsom, it might be more useful to be on the maori roll if my vote is to be for a left candidate.

          We all get two votes. The second one is the party vote and that is independant of whether you are on the maori roll or a general electorate roll.

          • Uroskin

            Or vote Act to get rid of the Maori seats.

            • Anna

              I don’t think so. We (my people) like them and we’ll be keeping them.

          • Hennie van der Merwe


            I get it (more or less) but then why call it a Maori Electorate?

            • Anna

              Because traditionally, it’s a Maori electorate and Maori seat.

              • Hennie van der Merwe


                Now you have lost me completely – Did Maori have a voting (democratic) tradition before the Pakeha arrived? Surely this was created in parallel with the normal electorates?

                • Anna

                  Actually, we did have a voting tradition before colonisation. I’m not sure if you’d call it democratic. It was more familial and kinship oriented, but sometimes revolved around leadership. I’m talking about “traditionally” in terms of how the Maori seats and electorates were set up in New Zealand for the purposes of voting in an election.

        • Jenny

          Goeiemare Hennie, As you probably know, in your own homeland, there is also a mechanism that preserves seats in parliament for parties representing minorities. Giving these parties a level of representation, which in a completely level playing field they would never be able to achieve.

          (And done for much the same reasons this accommodation was done here.)

          A quick search of the internet, reveals that South Africa’s Parliament is made up of two houses: the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces. The National Assembly is the more influential, passing legislation and overseeing executive performance.
          The stated nature of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP), is a body created to achieve co-operative governance and participatory democracy.

          The NCOP consists of 54 permanent members and 36 special delegates. Each of South Africa’s nine provinces sends 10 representatives to the NCOP – six permanent members, and four special delegates headed by the provincial premier or a member of the provincial legislature designated by the premier. There is a formula to ensure that each province’s delegation includes representation by minority parties.
          Thus the white minority can achieve a level of representation in Parliament that otherwise would be very unlikely.

          Consequently the Afrikana Party, The Freedom Front has four seats in parliament.

          Similar to the controversial Maori claim of Tino Rangatiratanga, The Freedom Front seek self determination for AfriKaners.

          Of course, before 1994 all the seats in the South African parliament were reserved for the white minority.

    • weka 1.2

      “To be honest, I dont think Hone is the man to lead a left party. In my mind he will always be Maori first, and left/socialist second.”
      As opposed to a white politician who is white first, left/socialist second?
      For me one of the really exciting things about Mana is that it’s a party that can be for Maori *and* pakeha. What’s wrong with pakeha being in or voting for a party that’s got lots of Maori stuff about it? Do you see Maori needs and ambitions as detrimental to pakeha or merely irrelevant?

      • millsy 1.2.1

        ‘Maori needs and ambitions’ do not nessesarily with ‘left needs and ambitions’.

        I point out for example the aborted Tuhoe settlement.

        • weka

          “‘Maori needs and ambitions’ do not nessesarily with ‘left needs and ambitions’.”
          Except that Harawira is forming a left wing party! Give me an example of where Maori left wing and pakeha left wing are incompatible.

        • fatty

          culturalism in NZ so far has been a sham, it was introduced with neoliberalism and is a cog in the neoliberal machine…it has not served the left at all.

          That is Hone’s point, just cause the centre and the right have perverted culturalism does not mean it will always be like that.

  2. Anne 2

    I sure hope that Labour has been talking to Matt McCarten behind the scenes. It’s one thing to fight in public, it’s another to forget that you’re basically on the same side and to keep the underlying relationship working.

    Couldn’t agree more. I maybe a Labour supporter, but I’m sick of the back-biting on both sides. I have two wishes:
    1. That Phil Goff keeps his trap shut from now on and makes no further anti-Harawira/Mana comments.
    2. That Hone Harawira keeps his trap shut from now on and makes no further anti-Goff/Labour comments.

    Tall order?

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      I suspect that Mana and Labour appeal to different parts of the left leaning vote that individually they could not access and turn out themselves.

      So although it is painful to hear those on the Left having a go at each other publically, the main players keeping clear daylight between Mana and Labour might actually work, in the bigger picture, for the Left. Thing is, rightly or wrongly, Goff genuinely has no time whatsoever for Harawira.

      It’s going to be a very interesting few months.

      • Anna 2.1.1

        I’m replying under your comment Colonial Viper, but it is in no way to contradict your post. It’s more an add on: there are some things that are going to be sticking points with Maori voters and Labour. Labour brought in the Foreshore and Seabed Act and have never apologised to Maori for it. There are already calls for Maori to remember that going with Labour is a backwards step. (Mind you – going with National was not progressive either).

        • Colonial Viper

          🙂 Labour needs to refocus on understanding and meeting Maori expectations. No doubts that an apology could be part of that.

          • Anne

            I have the impression that is pretty much what is happening CV, but they’re probably waiting until closer to the election before they spell it all out. Given the insane crap they had to put up with from both the media and political opponents over their every move in 2007/08 (read EFA just for starters) I don’t blame them staying quiet at this stage.

    • Monty 2.2

      sprout: comment deleted. spelling MPs’ names correctly is a prerequisite for inclusion in this discussion.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.3

      The biggest problem with getting Mana and Labour to talk is the fact that Labour isn’t a party of the left. It’s been right-wing for a long time. It may be moving slowly back to the left but it’s not there yet and not taking the steps necessary for it to become a left-wing party by the election.

      • lprent 2.3.1

        It is a centre-left party rather than being a left party. Like it or not, you have to have a significant part of the centre voters to be able to form a government.

        What you’re complaining about is really the position of the electorate, which is further right than you’d probably like.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Perhaps but, if the rumour that 80% of the populace prefer the Green Parties policies are accurate then I would doubt that the “centre” parties are actually reflecting the position of the electorate.

          • Colonial Viper

            The Right and Centre Right is using the MSM to screw with peoples heads.

            Pitching workers against each other, blaming disempowered groups for what only the rich and powerful can have real influence over, cultivating a culture of consumerism and indebtedness, perpetrating models of thinking and communication which embed neoliberal ideas and financialised ways of looking at the community. Closing down opposing or differing voices.

            As for the “position of the electorate” there is the position of the whole electorate, and then there is the position of the voting electorate.

            Political parties which have been around are all too aware that they are not one and the same and that shapes their positions and policies too.

          • lprent

            The question is really if they will vote for the green party in preference to voting for Labour. Umm lets look at this the long way first..

            Quite simply I could design questions that would get people to ‘prefer’ the reintroduction of death camps for others if I phrased them correctly (rehabilitation or reeducation camps are old favorites – modern ones include ‘boot camps’), and didn’t subject them to any rigor in the sample population (drawing a population sample in the sewer for instance). My guess would be that the numbers you’re talking about have been drawn the same way.

            But these are also probably single policies. If you don’t put price tags and costs on them then people will ‘prefer’ anything that is ‘good’ (Greenpeace like this type of poll, and so do Act). If you express it as either direct costs to them or by offering a selection of choices about what they cut to get the policy, then you usually see an interesting diminution in support. There are virtually no policies that I know throughout history that would count as ‘free lunch’. There is always a price to someone and usually to most people either directly or through the generations.

            But most people do not vote based on single policies. They vote on the package of policies allied to if they they think that people can carry them out, plus general levels of trust. In other words they vote for the gestalt of a party and in a large part based on their confidence in them. But hey, it appears to be my silly number evening…

            The confidence level in the voting population at election time based on the party vote between Labour and the Greens is

            2008 They trust Labour 5.05 time mores than they trust the Greens
            2005 They trust Labour 7.76 times more than they trust the Greens
            2002 They trust Labour 5.89 times more than they trust the Greens.

            All of which is a fancy way of saying that there is only one poll that actually counts. Everything else is posturing.

            • Draco T Bastard

              So, if Labour took on the entire policies of the Green Party would their vote go up or down?

              • lprent

                I don’t know. There are too many different people involved.

                There are a number of green policies that I’d like Labour to nick myself. There are others that I wouldn’t touch with a barge pole. And a whole lot more that I have little or no opinion on. My mix would be different to Anthony’s, Ben’s (and we are all science/tech based) and probably quite different to The Sprout’s (who probably still votes Labour some of the time and who I frequently argue with about policy).

                The Labour party policy are a collection of hard fought compromises between a rather wide range of viewpoints inside the party, between members, and between MP’s. I know that the Greens have similar compromises, but rather less tempered by the possibility of having to implement them.

                I suspect that the latter point would be the first issue that Labour would discuss when looking at each policy…

            • Anna

              Hmmmmm. I know the Greens are certainly popular as an alternative at the moment to the duopoly that is National and/or Labour. I’m not sure, however, if that will transfer to the actual polling booth. If Te Mana hadn’t risen, I would have been voting Green.

    • Frida 2.4

      @ Anne, I agree. I just don’t understand them sniping at each other. They need to unite and harness the power of the Left or New Zealand is truly doomed.

  3. Bored 3

    McCarten was the guy I wanted leading the strategy of the left for years, such a shame his health makes this a limited option. Thanks Matt, great work.

  4. North 4

    Labour’s 34% city booth vote against Hone’s 38% is hardly magnificent for Labour.

    Labour viewed the city vote in Waitakere, North Shore, and Whangarei as its big weapon against Hone.

    They knew they weren’t gonna make it relying on small town/rural Tai Tokerau. Well placed Labour people in Tai Tokerau were privately acknowledging that a week out from election day.

    Labour not making it in the cities………not good. Can we be sure that scenario won’t repeat in a more or less way in November, across general electorates ? Certainly if there are Mana list candidates in November there will more than likely be a loss of Labour list votes in significant percentage.

    Phil Goff is a problem. Too ready to seek short term gain by appealing to one section of the electorate by abusing another section – straight off……..”We won’t work with Harawira……..!”

    He just looks irrelevant and flaky, especially when the cheap talking-head pakeha tactic doesn’t come off as occurred here.

  5. The Maori seats will take care of themselves. It’s getting at least 3% of the party vote Mana needs to capture.

    And for that they need a dedicated and motivated team, preferably non Maori and non hardcore left, to concentrate solely on capturing the imagination of teh great unwashed of all ethnicities, cultures and political ideaologies.

    Policy, Schmolicy…Some dumbed down rhetoric that targets a few unpopular policies like the emissions trading scheme, the coastal and fisheries act and busting some gov’t perks etc etc. Some catchy slogans and stealthy social media marketing, a few celebrity endorsees and running scripted soundbites that resonate with the public instead of Hone’s straight shooting from the hip lines should do it.

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Heh nice strategy. Less intellectual, more hearty (and heart-felt) opposition to this damn NACT Govt.

      • pollywog 5.1.1

        yeah…intellect is overrated. Savage political instincts and a tidy line in bullshit, is what works.

        Hone needs an attack dog who makes even him look moderate. Someone who can do the whole ‘push the boat out’ thing so Hone can then reel it in, like what Rodders used to do for Smile and Wave and what B’n’B, Bed n’ Breakfast, I mean Brash and Banks is looking to do for Key.

        That whole Maori Parliament thing is a good case in point. Hone doesn’t need to be making those noises but somebody within Mana does just so Hone can exercise some statesman like diplomacy in rephrasing the argument in a softer tone 🙂

  6. The losers were the people of Te Tai Tokerau to be stupid enough to vote for a racist power hungry bully, they get what they deserve.

  7. Congratulations to Hone. I hope that he brings along dedicated principled lefties such as Sue Bradford, John Minto and Matt McCarten into Parliament. I also hope he ups his performance. He can be very good but on occasions he can be appalling.

    It is actually quite a nice feeling when you look at the vote and realise that it is overwhelmingly anti Government.

    In relation to North’s comments my quick analysis is that Kelvin won West Auckland, the North Shore and many of the small booths but lost Whangarei and the far North and this proved the difference.

    And it does appear that Hone’s “vote Hone and get Hone and Kelvin line may have helped.

    One other point, the result does suggest that those damn landline opinion polls under report support for the left.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      I reckon the landline opinion polls underestimate Mana even more than they underestimate Labour.

    • North 7.2

      Mickey Savage……… do you calculate that 34% for Kelvin in West Auckland, North Shore, Whangarei, against 38% for Hone in the same booths in the same areas, is a win for Labour ?

      Have a look at the individual booth results on Mickey.

      • mickysavage 7.2.1

        I did North. I summed the vote for all of the West Auckland booths and calculated Kelvin’s vote at 854 to 824 for Hone.

        Booths I included were

        Kaukapakapa, Kaukapakapa Fire Station, 977 Kaipara Coast Highway
        Waimauku, Waimauku School, 2 Muriwai Road
        West Harbour, West Harbour Primary School, 74 Oriel Avenue
        Helensville, Helensville Primary School Hall, corner Rata & Garfield Roads
        Hobsonville, Hobsonville Primary School, 104 Hobsonville Road
        Waitakere, Waitakere Primary School, 10 Bethells Road
        Sunnynook, Wairau Intermediate School, Becroft Drive
        Swanson, Swanson School, 703 Swanson Road
        Ranui, Birdwood School, 23 Karepo Crescent
        Sunnyvale, Sunnyvale Primary School, 34 Ribblesdale Road
        Henderson, Western Heights School, 126 Sturges Road
        Te Atatu Peninsula, Peninsula Primary School, 22 Waipani Road
        Henderson, Bruce McLaren Intermediate School, 61-69 Bruce McLaren Road
        Te Atatu Peninsula, Matipo Primary School, 63b Matipo Road
        Lincoln, Pomaria Primary School, 33a Pomaria Road
        Henderson, Henderson High School, 31 Henderson Valley Road
        Glen Eden, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Hoani Waititi Marae, 441 West Coast Road
        Glendene, Glendene School, 60 Barrys Road
        Te Atatu South, Flanshaw Road School, 51 Flanshaw Road
        Massey West, Massey High School, 274 Don Buck Road
        Massey, Royal Road School, 112 Royal Road
        Ranui, Ranui Primary School, 16a Ranui Station Road
        Henderson, Waitakere College, 42 Rathgar Road
        Te Atatu Peninsula, Te Atatu Intermediate School, 8 Harbour View Road

        Any I missed?

        • North

          No Mickey Savage, you haven’t missed any that I can see. I do get a 16 vote margin for Kelvin in West Auckland rather than your 30 but essentially there’s nothing in it. Same with North Shore.

          I reiterate; Labour thought they could take it with “city” remedying and overtaking their deficit in all other parts of the electorate. As it turned out they did not because they had no real edge in Auckland and did worse in Whangarei.

          It remains that “city” didn’t come to Labour’s aid as hoped. That must be worrying. I guess that’s what’s precipitated your exclude-Whangarei spin.

          Fair enough. Not nearly as bad as John Key on his way to India claiming that Hone’s win is more or less pyrrhic. Tosser !

          • Maui

            John Key’s reception (and conduct) in India will be interesting.

            They will be very well informed about his close relationship with Paul Henry.

            Nevertheless, NZ needs good relations with India for many reasons – whoever is in power.

  8. I hope that he brings along dedicated principled lefties such as Sue Bradford, John Minto and Matt McCarten into Parliament.

    I hope he doesn’t. McCarten yeah, but not the other two, if its at the expense of some hungry young brownie who needs blooding in the big house.

    Theres a generational revolt happening the world over and it’s time for the youngers to step up and take over the reins from, in our case, the Minto’s and Bradford’s of the world. Surely they have protege’s…no ?

    Such a shame that in Labours case, it’s gonna take Goff and his 30 years in the big house to step aside before their next generation take over. I’m talking about the Arderns, the Robertsons, the Davis’s and yes, even sadly, the Fa’afois.

    If Mana are to get the younger brown vote, they’re not going to get it with Minto and Bradford. I’d rather see Bomber get a shot, if only to counter Cactus Kate should ACT be seriously wooing her 🙂

  9. Zoobaby 9

    Hone’s win is not a victory for the left. The ony person Hone Harawira is interested in representing is Hone Harawira, he is too unpredicatble to work with any political party and instead of doing anything for those he does claim to represent he is going to have to spend the next six months consolidating a vote in TTT instead of campaigning for his party. Hone didn’t slay Goliath he spat in the face of those who elected him two and half years ago and they have now sent him a message. Shape up – because you are on your way out.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Took your Money Masters since last night to come up with that gibberish?

    • Alice 9.2

      Hone may be irrational, unpredictable and he may be too impulsive to be a politician, and he may not get anywhere in parliament, but in the end, no one truly, who is heartfelt gets anywhere in parliament because parliament is structured and conditioned by outside forces anyway, and it always goes in that ‘one’ direction.
      But what Hone has done is- stood on his own two feet, made a stand ‘alone’, very rare and courageous for one man to do. He faced the ‘machine’ head on and took them on. Hone may not get anywhere in parliament as such, but the ‘people’ will be inspired by his actions, especially if he stays staunch, outspoken and gutsy. He may not change anything in parliament, but you don’t ‘need’ parliament to change the mindset of the ‘people’ especially if they continue to see a man standing up for what he believes in and remain inspired by it.
      Hone is a visionary – his ideals may not be perfectly ideal and he may not be perfect, but he is inspirational, and to the Maori people this is awe-inspiring, people don’t want the ‘same old same old’ they want someone who makes them believe again.

      Good going Hone, rock on, I hope you challenge the mungbeans idiots in parliament because the idiots so need a big shake up.

    • Anna 9.3

      Sorry, but what absolute rubbish! This is the message the msm have been peddling and they’ve got it wrong.

  10. ianmac 10

    Pleased that Hone won. Brings a greater focus to the Left. Wish Labour were more encompassing though. “Ruling Hone out” was a mistake.

    • lprent 10.1

      “Ruling Hone out” was a mistake.

      Yeah, I seem to remember being quite clear what I thought about that. It isn’t up to politicians to decide that, the voters will give them what parties and people that they think are required for parliament. It is up to the politicians to work with what they are given.

      Doesn’t mean that I won’t treat Hone and his party as being just more opposition (and freeze my arse off working against) because I’m interested in the party and people that I support doing as well as possible. Besides, if he can’t convince enough people to support him and his party, then they really are of little effective use anyway. Looking at the result, I’d say that the nascent Mana party has quite a lot of work to do.

      Doesn’t mean that I don’t think that Hone is a frigging loose cannon who has about as much chance of running an effective party as Rodney Hide (or Don Brash) did (does). Working with him looks like it would be an exercise in extreme patience because I get the impression that neither Hone nor the Mana party have any idea where they actually stand, but tend to sway in the breeze like tall grass.

      (Incidentially, they remind me of the first days of New Labour – the same kind of delusional projection into the new organisation about what their policies are is present. It is going to be interesting to see what falls out as they try to get their platform together. I bet that they head into the election without doing more than some aspirational statements as a activist retention measure :twisted:)

      Before you can say that having the Hone party is good for the left, then it’d be good for them to actually find out what they do support. At present they look like the Alliance always did – divided, ineffectual, and liable to fall apart at the slightest stress.

      That means that they aren’t ready to go into any kind of coalition or even in a support role. Getting close to any actual power would probably make them fold in dissension as the hopes fade when required to make actual decisions…..

      • higherstandard 10.1.1

        Good analysis Lynn

      • Irascible 10.1.2

        Agreed. This analysis of the Mana Party is very apposite. There has been no clear left wing policy articulation from Hone or his associates from day one… merely “left” by association with those presumed to be “left” from their own publicity.

      • Brokenback 10.1.3

        Much of what you speak is a clear and concise view of the truth.

        However , you ,and I would presume the major players in the labour party are committing the classic mistake of dismissing or undervaluing the role and importance of the flaky/radical/anarchist Left.
        We will never support the centrist/dry/gutless social democracy as epitomised by Goff/King and the rest of former backbone club.

        The horror of this current amoral/thieving/witless coalition of scum that currently sits on treasury benches can be directly attributed to the ceaseless efforts of the centre right in the labour party to attack/undermine/marginalize the myriad of coalition parties they’ve had on their left flank .

        As Pollywog says “Hone needs an attack dog who makes even him look moderate. Someone who can do the whole ‘push the boat out’ thing so Hone can then reel it in, like what Rodders used to do for Smile and Wave and what B’n’B, Bed n’ Breakfast ” it can be similarly said for Goff/Clarke etc.

        FFS its past time the Social democrats forgot FPP politics ,and worked with and excepted that the fringe left cannot & will not be controlled, but that the same shared socialist ethos will allow them to co-operate in government.
        The building of a long term , stable left government depends on getting the 20% non-voters into the booths on polling day to vote for someone they can work with

        • lprent

          FYI: I’m not a major player in the NZLP in any normal sense. I never hold office above a branch level and seldom get involved in policy formation apart from the occasional criticism. I tend to be more of a goad on the implementation side of the party than anything else – especially when it comes to using IT. My part in The Standard is one of the expressions of that (and towards the whole of the ‘left’ who have a remarkable tendency not to talk with each other).

          So when I state something about attitudes of the NZLP, then what you’re seeing is my view. If it was the view of someone else then I’d say so (but they can usually state it themselves as far as I’m concerned). The weight you should put on it is that of someone who has been working within the party for decades and has a pretty good feel for the attitudes of a lot of the people within it.

          However, I suspect that you under-estimate the importance of the view of the party activists towards lying down for the benefit of activists elsewhere. They will not do it and will crucify the politicians that try to get them to do so. The ‘hierarchy’is quite well aware of this. 

          In my opinion, activists inside Labour are not willing to acquiesce to the fringes viewpoints for their benefit.  We have spent decades working together with people of quite varying opinions to keep the Labour party a major party that matters. We have done most of it while being criticized by people of the fringes who have been incapable of forming viable parties that don’t disintegrate.

          The Greens have managed it, and there is a considerable level of mutual respect between those parties at the members level these days as being people you can rely on. But that has taken more than a decade to happen. But I think that most of us would be distinctly unhappy with standing aside somewhere for their party to survive. 

          Basically political parties have to stand on their own feet without favour from other parties during the election campaigns. They can negotiate what the parliamentary teams do when they enter into coalition agreements with each other.

        • Anne

          We will never support the centrist/dry/gutless social democracy as epitomised by Goff/King and the rest of former backbone club.

          Utter bollocks Brokenback! Goff/King nor any other current Labour MP were ever members of the Backbone Club. False assertions like that only serve to bring your other claims into question. For your information, I was on the periphery of that ‘club’ (no I wasn’t a member or supporter but I knew some people very well at the time who were) so I know what I’m talking about.

          • lprent

            I think you meant never rather than ever. But you are also correct. Neither Goff or King were in the backbone club from what I have read or heard from credible sources (I wasn’t that involved at the time). In fact they were often seen as impediments by those in the ‘club’ because they didn’t take extremist positions.

            • Anne

              Thanks 1prent for the gentle reprimand. Making me angry plays havoc with my choice of words and my grammar. 😉

              This notion that Phil Goff was a former slave to neoliberalism is a fantasy. Yes, he was willing to give it a go and he may have even thought (hoped?) some of it might work, but the neo-right in the Labour Party had the upper hand at the time and nobody could do anything to stop them. Once David Lange took his famous cup of tea though it wasn’t long before the knives came out and the neo-right were booted out altogether. A salutary lesson for Labour and they are much the stronger for it.

              • lprent

                It wasn’t a reprimand – it was a typo that caught my eye. And wasn’t as bad as the one I did earlier where I wrote aspirations rather than aspersions *gulp* and someone pointed it out to me. 

                The underlying problem with our economy after Muldoon was simply how crap the economic situation was. When Labour got elected I expected that they wouldn’t deal with the basic problem. Which was running an economy as if it was still the private farm of the UK rather than being part of the world economy within which we had to make a living. I was preparing to depart NZ as an economic refugee.

                Regardless of how many screwups they did with the implementation, I was impressed that Labour did actually try to deal with the issue. It was something the National party had completely failed to do as they ineffectually dithered through most of the 60’s, 70’s, and early 80’s (and continued in the 90’s).

                Seeing that there were people actually willing to deal with the real issues caused me to stay in the country. It was also what has kept me supporting Labour. I haven’t seen any other party that has been effective at anything significant in the political landscape. The nearest is the Greens slow pressure in shifting the grounds of the debate.

                • The Voice of Reason

                  Ahem. If I may lapse into pedantry for a moment, I think Anne’s original comment was grammatically correct and the construction is supported by the use of ‘nor’ in the earlier part of the sentence. But ‘never’ can just as easily work in the context, though it sounds ugly if you say the sentence out loud.

                  I really must get out more ….

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Pleased to know the English language is not quite dead in this country yet 🙂

                  • lprent

                    Actually I think that you’re correct now that I look at it again closely. Of course it is as tortured as some of my sentences when my thinking outruns my ability to type.

                    Just so long as you don’t get out on this last Saturday for a good purpose. I did that and had to spend Sunday fighting a sniffle and sneeze attack.

        • Carol

          I think the left politcal parties in the western world had to make some compromises with the neoliberal establishment in order to get elected into government at all, since the early 80s. If they hadn’t made some compromises, they would have been totally demolished and marginalised by the neoliberal loving corporate MSM & other powerful corporates.

          I lived through the whole of Thatcher’s government in the UK and saw how she maneuvered to get people in powerful positions in the media & to promote the City (financial institutions), while udnermining the unions and organised socialist networks in the metropolitan areas. It was frustrating and demoralising. When I came back to NZ (after a stint in Howard’s Australia), it was a relief to live with the Clark led government. I much preferred the way they worked to roll back some of the worst of neoliberalism. It could have been so much worse here under a right wing government in the first decade of the 21st century. I much preferred Clark et al to hard line Thatcherism & Howardism.

          I am now hoping times are changing, that neoliberalism can not be maintained for much longer due to the dire problems the world is facing. iIm hoping NOW is the time for the left to strongly challenge the neoliberal establishment. But that hope is tempered by having seen many relatively short-lived false dawns in the past.

          It’s all very well for politicians & activists to promote a strong left agenda, but making it work and continue to be electable is a tough job. I’m still waiting to see if Mana is there for the long haul.

          • Colonial Viper

            The Left has still not adopted any strategies for building new left wing power bases it can springboard from again. As you note the Right has been methodical and systematic and deliberate in destroying those power bases (witness what is happening to the Hillside rail workshops in Dunedin as NZ workers get trashed by this Government; both Dunedin and the rail union has been a pain in the ass to National so stuff them).

            In general, the unions are depleted, the old spirit of solidarity is weak and only a small minority of workers belong to them anyway.

            Ironically some of the big co-ops we have in this country are very rurally based and can actually be right leaning (I’m thinking the dairy sector here). Right Wingers know the importance of socialism amongst themselves.

            The financiers, banks and big corporates back the NATs, as does the US influence. And the MSM has gives every single piece of National spin maximum airtime. They all network very well together: Right Wing Socialism in action.

            So without access to substantial capital and other real force multipliers, what is left for the left?

            Well I guess its about the FIGHT for hearts and minds then :mrgreen:

        • Anna

          I agree with Brokenback re: the flaky left-wing activist group. This has only been focussed on by a few commentators (Rawiri Taonui and Bomber) but the Maori Party lost their on the ground personnel and activist wing when a) they tried to rein in Annette Sykes earlier this year (by telling her she was not allowed to criticise iwi and to sit down and shut up) and b) their treatment of Hone Harawira. This left them with mainly the elites and middle class Maori (who are not known for getting out there and protesting – rather they prefer to work within systems and/or behind closed doors). The fighting wing were the ones that galvanised people and put the Maori Party in. They have now gone to Hone and Mana leaving the Maori Party revealed as the bunch of conservatives they are.

          • McFlock

            The elite and middle class Maori are also a minority. But they managed to fool enough of the people for a bit of the time, like the NACTs.

            • Anna

              I’m not sure about that. There’s been criticism inside the Maori population about this for sometime, but not reported by the media (because most don’t have a clue). The Maori Party gave the elites and the middle class their dream – by going with NAct. It never would have happened any other way.

  11. Zoobaby 11

    Ruling HOne out was principaled. As a Labour supporter I don’t want them working with some as crazy and as distracting from the real issues as HOne.

    Hone just blew $500,000 grand of taxpayer money because he wanted a by-election that did nothing for Maori. But at least it now sends the message that he is on the verge of being a total has-been bring on the general election and a win for Kelvin Davis.

    • felix 11.1

      I see the Nats are shitting themselves already.

      • Colonial Viper 11.1.1

        Captain Panic Pants on Fire.

        • higherstandard

          I wouldn’t be surprised if the Greens are a little PO’d as well……. in private of course

      • Maui 11.1.2

        Re: “I see the Nats are shitting themselves already”

        I get the impression Mr. Smile&Wave is losing credibility within the National Party – witness Brownlee’s demeanour after Key was airdropped in to make the land purchase offer, not to mention his stellar performance before the parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia.

        • Colonial Viper

          Mr Smile and Wave has his exit plan set out and his passport up to date.

          On the off chance National get back into power again he won’t make it to the 18 month mark. you can see the boredom on his face and there are higher paying jobs out there with less stress.

          The main thing is that his scrapbook is already full. Royal Wedding, Australian 19 gun salute, hanging out with the Secretary of State.

          He’s only missing the Obama photo but he can get that later.

          • Jum

            Colonial Viper

            “He’s only missing the Obama photo but he can get that later.”

            Yes, when America’s man sent here to sell us out returns for his reward.

      • North 11.1.3

        As are the Nats in Labour shitting themselves, irascibly so indeed.

        40 years Labour me. Don’t reckon I can be bothered anymore………especially with Goff at the helm and this disgusting, essentially racist “hate the mouthy Maori” crap just below the surface all the bloody time.

        Big cheers for the contribution of “Just Saying” somewhere above or below. Hone never said he was gonna be the Great Brown Left Wing Hope. He did say he’d stick it up wankers Left or Right who piously profess for the poor and then run around playing Beltway.

        And good on him for that !

        Most of you people are setting him up as a straw man to knock him down when inevitably he fails YOUR prescription. That’s not honest.

    • Zorr 11.2

      Wow, Hone wasted $500 mil? Insanity!

      On a more serious note, various National generated by-elections due to unprincipled MPs getting in hot water weren’t wasted taxpayer dollars too? Could have easily been avoided by having remotely decent people in parliament on all sides…

      • Zoobaby 11.2.1

        The problem is though Hone didn’t have to call a by-election he did it out of sheer arrogannce and as a result people sent him the message that he needs to do a whole hell of a let better than just some pointless grandstanding if he wants to still be around after November. But personally I am picking oblivion, he has given Kelvin Davis a huge platform to build from.

        And the reality is Davis a better man and a better MP than Hone and people are know seeing it.

    • North 11.3

      Yeah Zoobaby, against almost insuperable odds the man still won and not in a cliffhanger either actually.

      And your finest political analysis is this – “He’s on notice…..he’s gonna get it come November”.

      Your callowness is spectacular. Your wishful thinking deludes you. Your unmitigated racism is sickening.

      I take it you’re Labour. Labour must be so (un)proud to have you. Come to think of it, no……..Goff ‘s happy to take whatever ugly vote he can get.

  12. deemac 12

    the idea that Hone is the great left hope is more wishful thinking of the sort that I’m afraid the left is very good at. The word hubris was coined with men like Hone in mind. If you believe Matt and Hone are interested in, let alone capable of, building anything more than a Hone fan club, you will be sorely disappointed.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Hone is what he is, no more, no less. Yep the man has significant limitations. No doubt. At the least he is going to make the game this year much more interesting than before.

      Mana will be able to turn out voters that might otherwise stay at home and that is not a bad thing.

      • Zoobaby 12.1.1

        How come he couldn’t turn out these voters in TTT then?

        • Colonial Viper

          How come your Money Masters care? Oh yeah, coz they are shitting themselves that the coalition partner that ironically they helped kill, the Maori Party, is all over.

        • weka

          Because it’s a byelection. They’re always lower on turnout.

    • just saying 12.2

      “The idea that Hone is the great left hope…”

      God I’m sick of this. Who exactly has ever said this, or even implied it?
      I’ll be more than pleased if he proves to be a loud, unflinching supporter of the poor and oppressed, and adequately fill the vaccuum left by Labour in this regard.

  13. alex 13

    I think in the short term at least there would be a very good chance the Greens and Mana will work together. Gareth Hughes was featured on Mana’s website tweeting a congratulations. They may as well, pretty different votes they are trying to get out, probably in quite different electorates. There is no reason why they shouldn’t form a larger post election voting block.

  14. ZeeBop 14

    Start a Urban Maori party anyone?

  15. bomber 15

    What a Mana win means and why the mainstream media got it so wrong (again) –

  16. Ok folks – how about some COLD HARD FACTS?

    I’ve spent a bit of time here doing this research, and as a Botany by-election candidate – I find the ‘spinning’ on the numbers and difference in headlines all rather fascinating…………

    1) Most people seem to have completely forgotten about the yet to be counted Te Tai Tokerau 1,916 ‘special votes’.

    So – at this stage any talk of Hone Harawira’s majority is arguably premature.

    At the moment his majority is 867 over Labour’s Kelvin Davis – but with nearly 2000 votes to be counted – it is highly likely to end up being far greater than that.

    2) Voter turnout.
    Most people have missed counting the ‘polled’ votes with the ‘special’ votes.

    Counting both – the voter turnout in the Te Tai Tokerau 2011 by-election was 41.36%.

    Which is significantly more than the voter turnout in the 2011 Botany by-election – which was 36.44%

    3) Drop in electorate voter turnout.

    Comparison between the Botany and Te Tai Tokerau 2011 by-elections:

    Hmmmm………. fascinating that no one else that I know of appears to have discovered this rather significant statistic?

    a) In Botany 2008 – the electorate voter turnout was 76.29%
    In the Botany by-election 2011 – the voter turnout was 36.44%

    (A drop in voter turnout of almost 40%)

    b) In Te Tai Tokerau 2008 the voter turnout was 63.25%
    In Te Tai Tokerau 2011 the voter turnout was 41.36%

    (A drop in voter turnout of almost 22% )

    ie: The drop in % voter turnout in the Botany by-election was almost double that of Te Tai Tokerau?

    4) Comparison between electorate vote majorities of winning candidates, for Botany and Te Tai Tokerau.

    a) 2008 Botany election – Pansy Wong 10,872 majority over Labour’s Koro TAWA
    2011 Botany by-election – Jami-Lee Ross 3,972 majority over Labour’s Michael WOOD.
    Majority ‘slashed’ by 6,900

    b) 2008 Te Tai Tokerau election – Hone Harawira 6,308 majority over Kelvin Davis
    2011 Te Tai Tokerau by-election – Hone Harawira 867 majority over Kelvin Davis (1,916 special votes yet to counted)
    Majority ‘slashed’ by 5,541 EXCEPT 1,916 ‘SPECIAL’ VOTES HAVE YET TO BE COUNTED?

    5) Comparison between total number of votes cast for winning candidates, for Botany and Te Tai Tokerau

    a) 2008 Botany election – Pansy Wong 17,382
    2011 Botany by-election – Jami-Lee Ross 8,352

    Vote ‘slashed’ by 9,030

    b) 2008 Te Tai Tokerau election – Hone Harawira 12,019
    2011 Te Tai Tokerau by-election – Hone Harawira 5,611
    Vote ‘slashed?’ by 6,408


    Comparison of NZH headlines:

    John Armstrong NZH – Botany

    “Botany byelection loss holds silver lining for Labour Party”

    John Armstrong NZH – Te Tai Tokerau

    “Risky tactics leave Hone bruised”

    Spot the difference in the ‘spin’?
    Those are the FACTS……
    (From the Electoral Commission website)

    Penny Bright

    • North 16.1

      Good on you Penny, brilliant.

      Don’t expect to get anything but abuse from the fine racist gentlemen on this “leftist” blogsite though. No wonder Labour’s knackered with supporters like them.

      Let me tell you that there will be a significant rise in Hone’s majority with the specials. Watch the figures from East School in Kaikohe. TVNZ and the Herald will still report that he only just scraped in though.

      7% on election night ain’t no scrape in, particularly with just about everything and everyone lined up against you, from the Prime Minister, to Ph’Goff , to the wannabee raconteur Shane Jones (excuse my belly-laugh), to the fact that it’s winter, to Mana having no money.

      The times they are a’changin’ and the result won’t be in the pathetic Left/Right paradigm. It’ll be in the much more essential paradigm of “protect New Zealand”. Both Labour and Key want Hone gone because he’s the only one with the balls and the support to stand in the way of them selling off the coast of Northland to international corporations.

      [lprent: The majority of the commentators here don’t even support Labour (and will happily tell you so). But I will take you at your word and view your assertions in the second paragraph as being a declaration of self-martyrdom.

      I cannot be bothered providing a forum for someone who stupidly attacks their hosts even with a irrelevant hypothesis with no justification. Since you don’t value the site then piss off and do not come back under any identity. Added to auto-spam. ]

      • Colonial Viper 16.1.1

        It’s not even a case of “Fortress New Zealand” any more.

        Since the 1980’s some of our worst enemies helping the foreign corporates and foreign bankers own our country have come from within.

      • Jum 16.1.2


        Don’t be ridiculous. You have no idea just how big the forces are internationally that want to use New Zealand for what it produces and where it is. If you did you would be suggesting kiss and make up not pistols at dawn.

        The TPPA being signed off by National this year – the Maori Party are supporting NAct to force it through. I suggest your Hone contacts Professor Jane Kelsey who has been trying to bring New Zealanders’ attention to it for many months now.

        New Zealand has been steadily carved up for decades and mainly you can thank the business roundtable and the treasury for that, as they engineered governments into complying and helped people like Bill English who worked in treasury to achieve, this year, our final betrayal.

        I do congratulate Hone but with him and his supporters now attacking Labour, that means Mana and the Maori Party will help serve us all up on a platter to the corps. (corpse – get it…)

        • Anna

          Kelsey is one of the kind academics helping Te Mana write its policy on a raft of issues. I think she’s already in contact with Hone …

      • North 16.1.3

        You’re happy to provide a forum for the expression of vicious racism however……….?

        [lprent: Looking at the comments the other day, it was pretty evident that you were a simple bigot who really needs to spend more time reading the discussions rather than displaying your lack of understanding in public. You spent most of your time hurling accusations without bothering to check anything. It is a classic newbie mistake and you’re now getting an educational experience about why it is not a good idea.

        I saw at least two places where you accused strong right-wing commentators of being Labour party members (I’m sure that amused them) and then tried to protray your interpretation of their statements as being the ‘policy’ of the NZLP.

        You were describing The Standard as if every person there was a member of the NZLP when even a little bit of reading would have shown you that the range of opinion of commentators and even authors is pretty wide. There are Act and libertarian, communists, anarchists, greens, science and tech, arts maniacs, polsci nutters, economists, etc etc who regularly comment. What they say is their problem. My problem is ensuring that discussions here don’t get out of hand when the various ideas start clashing.

        The policy of the site is that we will crackdown on stupid pointless comments or those that go over the edge of taste and will trigger flame wars. But also that discussion of the politics of race (and gender, and poverty, and innumerable other topics) is encouraged. The really really racist comments you don’t see on site (and I’d have to say you have lived a really sheltered existence if you think that anything over the last few days was particularly racist) – they get eliminated either because we catch the comment or because we eliminate the authors of such comments.

        If that level of discussion that offends you then I’d say that you aren’t ready for having a open discussion on the net with people of dissimilar beliefs. If you try to force a discussion on your own basis (ie trying to set the rules of the debate) as you appeared to be trying to do, then the moderators will educate you about who runs the site.

        Face it. You are a bigoted ignorant dickhead who is so intent of throwing accusations of racism around to actually listen to what other people are saying. In the terms of the net, that is described as being a troll.

        I have a general policy about trolls. I eliminate them in as humiliating a way as I can achieve for the good of the community. It has absolutely nothing to do with your race, gender, age, or education – it has to do with your anti-social attitude. Eventually you’ll grow up enough to understand why trolls are disliked throughout online communities. ]

        • Jenny

          Lynn you can understand how such views can propagate when Goff can infer that he would work with “non Maori” Mana MPs if one was ever elected, and no one thinks this is unusual.

          Personally I think that this is another case of foot in the mouth disease.

          But compare this with how Harawira was treated when he said that he would be uncomfortable if his daughter brought home a Pakeha boyfriend.

          Being at the sharp end of this double standard (pardon the pun) would convince many Maori that this is a deeply racist culture.

          • lprent

            I haven’t seen the interview or whatever it was. However I suspect that what he effectively said was that he did not want to go into any kind of arrangement with Hone. I can understand that. It is what I tend to feel myself. Hone is chronically unreliable.

            Hell, I would expect that if you put the question to Hone, and pressed it, he would agree. Hone is also honest about himself from what I have seen. Honest or not, that ureliability makes him a crap coalition partner. I would want to make the deal with someone who can be expected to keep it.

            I think your view on it simply doesn’t factor that political reality in.

            • Anna

              @ Iprent: I wouldn’t interpret it that way. Hone has the courage of his convictions and is principled (whether people agree with those principles and convictions or not). He is pretty upfront about what he wants too. I think the big mistake are those that think they can keep him on a leash or constrain him. So long as you didn’t try to cross those principles, convictions and boundaries, I think it’s pretty much a case of what you see is what you get.

              @ Jenny: Well said. I find the double standards pretty interesting myself. Quite often (not on this site), I’ve seen people talk about Harawira’s racism and then go onto depict him in terms that are worse than anything he has ever said. I also wonder how many people that criticise Harawira’s racism have ever fought against racism on the streets or belonged to the anti-racist movements – like he has? Or been arrested for it (like he has) or been faced with discrimination (bar the leaking of a private email, where the language was strong, but the historical account was pretty accurate) like Harawira has? There are battles to be fought on racism, but the hysteria around Harawira’s comments are astounding, as are the mitigation of dubious comments that can be perceived as prejudiced from other people in society.

    • lprent 16.2

      1. Penny, I am a bit constrained by interpretations of electoral law at present in discussing it. But I’d say that many if not most of the special votes will be disallowed as a far larger fraction than you’d see in a general seat.

      2. I hereby award you the DPF medal of honour for spinning using selective statistics
      The figure you should be basing the percentages on should probably be the number who are eligible to vote for the seats rather than who is enrolled. 32,600 enrolled voters is extraordinarily low. I tend to view not enrolling and not voting as both being statements of political intent.

      Umm.. Botany. At the 2006 census had 40,623 18yo and above, 42,815 on the roll at the by-election, and 15,421 votes in the by-election.

      Te Tai Tokerau. At the 2006 census it had 54,798 18yo and above, 32,738 on the roll at the election, and (if we wanted to be generous) 11,606 + 1,934 specials = 13,540

      Now both of these electorates are growing in size albeit at different rates.

      As I make it it means that at least 41,000 people either didn’t put themselves on the roll in TTT or didn’t bother to vote in the by election. Botany has a much higher enrollment (well over 90% as at 2006 according to my look at the data), and had a lower proportion not voting.

      3. Also awarding you the Cameron Slater award for using spurious numbers in conspiracy theories. Comparing the difference between the difference of two percentages is inanely meaningless. It is worthy of the technically illiterate Whaleoil.

      4 & 5. Awarding you the political journalist’s award (the Duncan Garner) for using apple and oranges numbers. Looking at absolute ‘majorities’ changes between general elections and by-elections is meaningless. It should not be used in political debate, but is a pretty good technique for the TAB to provide numbers for sports broadcasters with lots of dead airtime to fill.

      I’m aware that your comment could be construed as being satire with spinning numbers. Please please tell me that is what you meant it to be construed as..

      • lprent 16.2.1

        Ok. I dug around and finally pulled this cached link (the official parliamentary link gave me a permission problem).

        On page 9 Part IV we have the analysis of the special votes disallowed in the 2004 Te Tai Hauauru by-election, which is probably the closest analogy to the TTT by-election.

        Out of 1096 special votes, there were 684 disallowed. Almost all of those were because the person was not on the roll.

        By contrast the 2011 Botany by-election the special votes were estimated as 719 on the night, and 504 were valid (I can’t be bothered digging out the official reports).

        Quite a difference. I’d expect that well less than 1000 of the 1900 odd specials are going to be valid in TTT

      • Penny Bright 16.2.2

        Actually – I was trying very hard to compare ‘apples with apples’.

        I got those facts and figures (which I believe are directly comparable) from the Electoral Commission website.

        It is just conjecture at this stage as to how many of the yet to be counted 1916 ‘special’ votes in the Te Tai Tokerau by-election will be ‘disallowed’.

        I prefer to await the actual official results.

        So – I take it that you’re not happy that Hone Harawira won the Te Tai Tokerau by-election ‘lprent’?

        So be it – but I’m not impressed with your interpretation of my research as ‘spin’.

        Maybe ‘sour grapes’ make you feel rather bitter?

        (Seems to be quite a lot of that around after Hone’s win in Te Tai Tokerau).

        Of course – you are entitled to your opinion – as am I.

        I’m looking forward to some sensible campaigning on the issues, with as much practical unity as possible, between as many who are politically involved as possible.

        I’ve worked with Hone Harawira before, in 2004, when the Far North District Council threatened to introduce water restrictions as a debt-enforcement mechanism.

        Eventually, after a very intensive campaign, where people were taught at street meetings how to remove restrictors from water meters in order to defend their household’s basic human right to water – the Far North District Council backed off.

        I look forward to working with the Mana Party, the Labour Party, Greens, NZ First against privatisation, water restrictions, corruption, and as many issues as we have ‘common cause’.

        Tomorrow is another day………………….


        Penny Bright

        • lprent

          You weren’t really looking at apples vs apples. The electorates you were doing comparisions between are very different at many levels. The demographics in the parliamentary system (and are linked to from show just how different they are.

          With the specials, I was pointing out that your precounting of them was premature. Quite simply there is no way to know how many are invalid. But looking at the results of a previous by-election in a Maori electorate invalid special votes would be a damn sight more likely as an indication then your approach of just precounting them and lumping them into the actual votes.

          I don’t really care if Hone got rejected or not from TTT. That is something for the voters of TTT. If you read aound my comments and posts you will find that has been a pretty consistent theme of mine.

          I am happy that Kelvin improved the position for Labour, and I think that is a good start for him and Labour in TTT later in the year. But hey, I support Labour – not Mana.

          And your comment sure looked like spin to my eye. It looked like a cherry pick of numbers of dubious relevance. Since it had not been challenged when I read it and i had some time, I pulled some other numbers out that I thought were more relevant and expressed my opinions. That is what this site is for – expressing opinions (even spin) and linking up relevant information.

          I have been looking closely at different types of electorates for decades now and in quite a lot of detail. I get irritated with it when i see them compared in a fashion that I find is superficial. Doesn’t matter if it is DPF during the Mt Albert by election, or some Labourites during Mana and Botany, or the exuberance of the Mana supporters in TTT – they all get me pourin cold water on them.

          It is pretty amazing how different electorates all are, even the ones that look superficially similar. But comparing Botany with TTT? That is very different and quite irrelevant in my opinion.

    • Anna 16.3

      Yes, brilliant Penny and thank you!

  17. Colonial Viper 17

    ie: The drop in % voter turnout in the Botany by-election was almost double that of Te Tai Tokerau?

    Yes that is very interesting.

    And I do wonder why media refer to majorities ‘slashed’ when turn out was clearly much different. Surely it would be intellectually more honest to say someone’s majority went from 10% ahead of their nearest rival to just 5% ahead, on lower turn out (for example).

    But that’s probably being naive.

  18. Gareth 18

    I would consider myself a swing voter, relativily centrist in that I don’t want to lose acc or assets but I do believe that people need incentive to stand on there own feet. I wish and hope that labour will come through with strong policy . For example instead of messing with gst on friut and veges to instead drop the bottom tax rate to compensate for the gst rise and to increase the top tax rate to compensate. I would also prefer a similar policy instead of WFF probably along the lines of raising the tax free threshold to much higher than the $5000? suggested again compensated by a raise in tax at the top end. This is because as I am now a manager of a small firm and I have had staff turn down raises and promotion as they may lose a similar amount in government support and decide to that extra responsibility isn’t worth it at the end of the week. I firmly believe that people need a push sometimes to better themselves and some present policy is counter productive to this. (As an aside dramatically lowering bottom tax rates would snooker the right as raising taxes to the lower income bracket and lowering top tax rates would be extremely unpalatable to the electorate probably much more so than gradualy undermining wff)

    Anyways as a the thought of a Brash Key coalition pushed me back to the left the thought of a vast left coalition including Hone has pushed me back to the centre leaving me undecided esp considering what I consider to be weak Labour policey currently. I know Goff has ruled it out but I struggle to believe he has strong enough prinicpals to stick to with this when push come to shove.

    Perhaps I am not the only ‘swing voter’ thinking along these lines?

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      esp considering what I consider to be weak Labour policey currently. I know Goff has ruled it out but I struggle to believe he has strong enough prinicpals to stick to with this when push come to shove.

      Goff has been totally unequivocal in his statements that Labour will not work with Hone Harawira. The people you need doubts about are Key, English and Brownlee. Brash is a nothing, they will be looking to get rid of him ASAP because they’ve only just remembered what a liability he is.

      Key told you there would be no asset sales in his first term (sure, he’s just getting a whole lot ready to pull the trigger on), there would be no GST increases (that didn’t even last into the third year), and that KiwiSaver would be left untouched.

      So where do you stand on Key’s ability to stick to his “principals”?

      Labour has only announced a small amount of its policies and they aren’t focussed just on adjustments to tax rates. There is much more to running an economy than that.

      Ending the 90 day right to fire, no asset sales, raising wages to $15/hr (BTW lowering income tax on minimum wage earners makes much less difference to them than raising pay rates), taking GST off fruits and vegetables, a generous R&D tax credit, and major changes to the operation of the Reserve Bank have all been announced so far.

      This to me is a very good start. And there will be much more coming from Labour well before the November election so people have time to digest what it all means.

      This is because as I am now a manager of a small firm and I have had staff turn down raises and promotion as they may lose a similar amount in government support and decide to that extra responsibility isn’t worth it at the end of the week.

      What exact government support were they going to lose? Were you pushing their pay rates over $20/hr?

      • Gareth 18.1.1

        I couldn’t tell you exactly what they were losing but WFF and accomadation supplement were mentioned and yes the raises were not insignifacnt over $5 ph so the rates would have been north of $20 and carry a large amount of additional responsibility. It seemed they were to happy to cruise through life on government support.

        Also I agree with you in that tax cuts have much less effect for those on lower incomes, however surly the avergage person will save maybe $10 per week with gst off fruit etc. Surely if you knock a few % points off the bottom tax rate this is achievable? It will save on adding confusion to the system and I also beleive that supermarkets will swallow the gst drop by increasing the margins within say 6 months. Actually giving people the money will prevent this.

        • Colonial Viper

          yes the raises were not insignifacnt over $5 ph so the rates would have been north of $20 and carry a large amount of additional responsibility. It seemed they were to happy to cruise through life on government support.

          You’re trying to tell me that you offered someone a promotion with a pay increase of 30% or more (i.e. a raise of $10K to $15K p.a.) and they turned it down.

          Seriously, even if this was a real scenario, not a fake one, mucking around with tax rates and abatement thresholds is not going to change that persons mind when you have offered them $10K to $15K more and they say no to that money.

          They clearly don’t want to be a manager or supervisor or co-ordinator or team leader for you or whatever the position was.

          Perhaps because they see the job you offered, correctly or incorrectly, as unsupported, unachievable and a lose-lose proposition on multiple fronts not worth the grief.

          It seemed they were to happy to cruise through life on government support.

          You totally suck as a business owner and judge of your own workers’ attitudes if you actually offered a highly responsible position with a $10K to $15K p.a. pay rise to someone that you are now describing as a cruiser happy to relax back on with Government support.

          rates would have been north of $20

          lolz what a giveaway mate

  19. RobertM 19

    I have elements of agreement with Colonial Viper on this. I agree with a higher min wage and taking the GST of fruit and veg is some compensation for the higher wage structure employers and farmers will face in the provinces. New Zealand is coming dangerously close to having an economic structure that depends on low wages for agricultural workers and support industries in the provinces. Many with short term vision would support this including the more stupid provincial workers. But it is essential to raise the wage structure. Idiots like Michelle Bachman, Muriel Newman and Deborah Coddington who want to sustain rural industries with low wages are the most criminal enemies of human progress.
    If a job , industry or farming activity is worthwhile and sustainable it will be able to pay livable wages for a reasonably sophisticated life. If the dairy farm, dairy factory or orchard can’t pay good wages it should close immediately and the same applies to a mining. Anybody over 28 who is prepared to work for the current minimum wage is by any rational definition seriously mentally retarded. If industries like dairy can not pay good wages and observe good standards they should go elsewhere and in part Argentina and Australia made the decision if you won’t or can’t pay well enough your industry does not belong in an advanced western society.

  20. Frank Macskasy 20

    “Hone Harawira “cannot really claim victory” in the Tai Tokerau by-election because of a “very reduced mandate,” Prime Minister John Key says.

    En route to India this morning, Key spoke to reporters in Darwin, Australia. He said most people would think the by-election had been “an expensive waste of time”.

    “We’ve spent hundreds of thousands of tax-payer dollars and we’ve ended up in the same position that we started in,” Key said.

    “It’s not like really, Hone Harawira can claim victory. This is a very reduced mandate.” ”

    Waste of money?

    As opposed to, say, spending unknown millions on 34 new BMW limousines?

    And as for a reduced mandate – that hasn’t stopped National from governing in the past when in 1978 and 1981, they recieved less votes than Labour – but because of the bizarre nature of FPP – won more seats in the House?! Or, when Cam Campion won Wanganui in 1990 with roughly a third of the votes.

    Sour grapes much, Mr Key?

  21. Te Godwin 21

    Congratulations to Mana. Let us hope for a racially pure NZ where the genetically superior Mana can roam free of the White Motherfucker

    [lprent: An idiot trolling with a different handle. I don’t like this tactic of flipping handles. Especially when it looks like it was meant as a flame starter. If I see you persisting in the tactic then you’re likely to find you cannot leave comments for quite some time under any handle. ]

  22. deemac 22

    Gareth, if we are reduced to relying on an individual leader’s backbone we are of course in trouble. It is the right wing way of looking at politics: elect the right person, then just sit back and it’ll be fine.
    The left perspective on the other hand is that, given the status quo, any leader will be subject to enormous pressure, so we need to build a movement to keep up the pressure for the policies we want.
    Which incidentally is another reason why Hone is NBG as a leader for the left – does anyone seriously believe he’ll ever be accountable to anyone but himself?

  23. Hone Harawira resigned from the Maori Party in order to get a ‘mandate’ for the ‘Mana Party’.

    Both Winston Peters and Tariana Turia took that ‘by-election’ step before NZ First and the Maori Party contested the 1993 and 2005 general elections.

    The Botany by-election, and subsequent Howick Ward by-election arguably caused the wasting of far more taxpayer and ratepayer monies than the Te Tai Tokerau by-election.

    At least Hone wasn’t forced to resign over allegedly corrupt practices as was former National Party MP Pansy Wong – whose effectively forced resignation caused the ‘waste’ of taxpayer and ratepayer monies in the Botany and Howick Ward by-elections?

    ( Prime Minister John Key is coming across as a VERY mean-spirited ‘poor sport’ – in trying to denigrate Hone Harawira’s Mana Party ‘mandate’ from the Te Tai Tokerau electorate.

    John Key’s endorsement of Kelvin Davis probably helped Hone more than it did Kelvin?

    Penny Bright

    • Draco T Bastard 23.1

      Hone Harawira resigned from the Maori Party in order to get a ‘mandate’ for the ‘Mana Party’.

      No, he was kicked out of the Maori Party for his own actions against that party*. He then resigned from his electorate seat so as to seek a mandate for his new party.

      * Before you get all het up I supported him in what he said. Still do, he was right after all, the Maori Party had sold out their electorate.

    • Anna 23.2

      It did. It was like asking people to swallow a cup of cold sick. Mr Smile and Wave might have influence elsewhere, but in TTT – his endorsement was a liability. It also reminded TTT people that National, the Maori Party and Labour were prepared to work together to kill Te Mana before it was birthed.

  24. Jenny 24

    Good Post EDDIE but I would just like to take issue with a couple of points.

    My first point. Eddie, to label the Maori Party as kupapa, a particularly offensive and derogatory label, is a bit over the top.

    Even Hone Harawira who has often been accused of using inflamatory or extremist language, has never used this epithet to describe the Maori Party.

    I have said before that I feel that the disapearance of the Maori Party from parliament would be loss. I still feel this.
    Having met and talked with them I know that they are talented and sincere and seek to do the best as they see it. I don’t agree as some have said here that they are only in it for themselves.

    When Labour leader Helen Clark demeaned the Maori Party as “The Last Cab Off The Rank” she almost guaranteed that the Maori Party would try to escape the parliamentary ghetto she tried to keep them in.

    1/ the Maori Party wouldn’t exist if the Labour Government had not, at the stroke of a pen removed the right of Maori to challenge the exploitation of the Seabed and Foreshore.

    2/ And the coalition with National wouldn’t exist if the Labour Party had not been so sectarian.

    The Maori Party MPs are not kupapa in some sense that they have been driven by circumstance to their positions.

    My second point. Eddie Hone Harawira himself has not given up on the Maori Party. Hone has been saying in his speechs that he will not be going into parliament to sit around.

    On current polling, Labour the Greens and Mana will still not be able to keep the Nacts from the Treasury benches.

    I believe this reality is part of the reason for Hone’s outreach to the Maori Party.

    He is not going to let sectarian differences get in his way to making a real difference.

    To this end Harawira intends to make a serious effort to win the Maori Party over to his Kaupapa.

    An arrangement between Mana and the Maori Party could put both of them in the strongest possible position to be able to make concrete demands in a coalition. Since these concrete demands will likely be to the left, a coalition with Labour, the most left of the two major parties, is more likely to concede to concessions to their left.

    Hone Harawira has stated that one of his demands is “Full employment in Te Tai Tokerau funded by reversing the tax cuts on the top 10% of income earners”

    This may sound like pork barrel politics, but it is not. Harawira has risen to prominence in the North because this is the area of New Zealand worst hit by the recession and unemployment, and his Maori constituents have been hit doubly hard. Harawira has been called on by history to fix this injustice and by God he will use everything in his power to do it. If that means an arrangement with the Maori Party, so be it.

    • Anna 24.1

      @ Jenny – I think you are being very charitable. I am sure Hone and Te Mana’s reach out to the Maori Party is sincere and won’t be well received. Eddie’s term for the Maori Party is standard terminology in both real and online communities. Whether it’s valid or not – is another discussion. Personally, I agree with Eddie and they weren’t forced into it by circumstances. They signed up to the deal and have been voting with NAct. They could have dug their toes in publicly, but they haven’t.

  25. Gina 25

    If you read Chris Fords article on Voxy and believe it then Hone really left the Maori Party over the Seabed and Foreshore legislation. Chris thinks that the claims to the foreshore and seabed etc are in the interests of a new Maori rich elite and that this is who Hone is really fighting for. Even if this is true he is at least going to do some damage to the National party which will help the left. Also Matt McCarten is clearly a lefty. Tell me what you think of Chris Ford’s observations about Hone’s true motivations for forming the Mana party.

    I guess it might be a combination of Hone for the rich Maori elite and Matt McCartin for the left using the vehicle of Te Tai Tokerau in promoting their differing interests.

    • McFlock 25.1

      I guess the most neutral way I can describe my agreement with Chris Ford is that Tino Rangatiratanga  and socialism aren’t completely synonymous, in the same way that “green” objectives and socialism aren’t completely synonymous. The tend to overlap significantly, but not completely and they can be reached by different paths.

      I think Hone Harawira has learnt from the Maori Party that if Mana go too far off the socialist path they’ll alienate their support, and I think that he leans farther left than say Pita Sharples so he’s less likely to sell out like the Maori Party did, but there’s always a choice between paths. The conflict is especially dangerous if the sole electorate MP in a sub-5% party is in a Maori seat, so might put one principle before the other if there is conflict.

      For this reason I think that there’s still an opening for a pure broad-base left wing party, of about 5-10%. 

      • Colonial Viper 25.1.1

        For this reason I think that there’s still an opening for a pure broad-base left wing party, of about 5-10%.

        How far left? Social democratic focussed on tweaking and controlling capitalism, or more seriously left? E.g. strong unionism, worker co-ops, mutual organisations, state support for the development of standalone non-profits, savings banks and credit unions ahead of foreign banks etc.

        • McFlock

          There’s actually a fair amount of crossover, although the communist party is probably out 🙂
          Basically, left of Labour, which means national provision of infrastructure and strong workers rights. Social democratic principles would be a good starting point, and then the social democrats would move towards labour as the left party goes further left and the status quo also moves left. Kind’ve the reverse of the NACT system, where old nats go to ACT as bland key pushes the nats away from firm policy (though not “left”).
          My point being that social, economic and environmental policy come from the party’s socialist/social dem principles, rather than economic and employment policy being tacked onto a policy manifesto that is really interested in a seperate (if related) issue.

    • Adele 25.2

      Teenaa koe, Gina

      Firstly, who is Chris Ford? He is situated in Dunedin as far from M

    • Anna 25.3

      Hone and the rich Maori elite? Uh-uh. The rich Maori elite are snuggled up with the Maori Party. The Maori Party is their dream come true! The Maori population would have never gone with National or Act (something reflected in the numbers who vote for those parties in the Maori electorates), but they were forced to through the Maori Party. Sorry but where do people like Ford come up with this stuff from? This is absolutely made-up.
      The reason why Hone and Te Mana will go after the Maori seats is because they’ll be there for the taking when Tariana and Pita go. Te Mana will aim to bring them back toward the Left – not for the party, itself, to go towards the right.

    • Adele 25.4

      Teenaa koe, Gina

      Firstly, who is Chris Ford? He is about as credible a commentor on Māori politics as my left jandal. He probably never knew Te Tai Tokerau existed until Hone came onto the scene. As he lives in Dunedin, the closest encounter he is likely to have with tangata whenua is driving up Māori Hill.

      Chris so mis-represents the character of Hone. If we are entitled to wealth than we must all be wealthy. It is simply not good enough to tolerate pockets of deprivation – it goes against indigeneity. In my opinion, Hone is very much captured by an indigenous worldview – that is, Te Ao Māori.

  26. Tangled up in blue 26

    Mr Goff again ruled out Labour working with Mr Harawira, saying his ideology was different from Labour’s and he was not a stable partner.

    Ouch. It looks like Mana won’t be part of a Govt. for at least the next 1 or 2 terms.

    Hmm. I think I’ll stick with the Greens.

    • Jenny 26.1

      Mr Goff again ruled out Labour working with Mr Harawira…

      “Ouch. It looks like Mana won’t be part of a Govt. for at least the next 1 or 2 terms.”

      Tangled up in blue

      Tangled up, if this really is the case. Then Goff is not prepared to be Prime Minister and Labour does not want to be in government.

      What you effectively are saying Tangled up, is that Labour would rather deliver their members and supporters to the tender mercies of the Nacts. than to have to make concessions to their left.

      A writer more erudite than me has put it this way:

      “[Labour] would rather keep control of the losing side, than lose control of the winning side.”

      Chris Trotter

      • Zoobaby 26.1.1

        I am glad that Phil Goff has ruled out working with Hone. Hone continues to show that he is simply not capable of working with any political party. In reality Hone’s own behaviour is ruled him out.

        Hone needs an ally to achieve all the things he says he wants to do. But he isn’t capable of doing it. Making allies is an important part of MMP and Hone is failing to make any allies.

        • Anna

          Te Mana is a minority party. They will not get a majority to govern. The onus isn’t on Te Mana to get allies. The onus is on Goff. It’s Labour’s loss. It leaves people like me in no worse position than they already are.

          • The Voice of Reason

            You’re not going to be worse off under the next National Government? Really?

            • Anna

              Probably. I’m certainly not going to be better off under Labour either. As far as I’m concerned, Labour shafted Maori and I won’t be heading back any time soon. I understand the principle of wanting to join together to keep the NActs out (it’s a fair one), but from where I sit – it’s a fear mongering tactic to just maintain the duopoly in our Government.

              • The Voice of Reason

                The one thing that seems left out of that equation is the will of the people. Labour is the best supported party on the left, by a factor of 4 to 1, yet there is an assumption that Labour must ignore its own base to get the support of the minor parties. In reality, without Labour, the rest of the left get nothing. It’s that simple.
                By all empirical evidence, you and I are materially better off under any Labour led Government. As are the vast majority of Kiwis. If the onus isn’t on Mana to find allies, what is the point of the party? And what can Mana possibly achieve without Labour’s support?

                • Anna

                  The point of Te Mana is to represent its constituents. I’m not of the opinion that you have to be in Government to change things for the better. You do, however, need a strong voice to raise awareness, rally and galvanise people to create change – something activists know better than anyone. As said earlier: Te Mana is a minority party. The onus is on Goff to form allies and if he doesn’t want to go with Te Mana, that’s his prerogative, but he will be sitting it out on the bench. The Greens have already signalled that they are not Labour’s by right, so Goff and Labour need to be building bridges, not setting them on fire. Personally, I’d be happy for Te Mana to sit outside of Government and vote issue by issue. I don’t want Te Mana to sign up to anything or anyone at the moment, but use their influence to highlight injustice in a way that has been sadly lacking for sometime.

                  • The Voice of Reason

                    Fair enough, Anna. It’s certainly going to be interesting to see if Mana develops policies that will need broader support and how they will then work to get them enacted. But it’s also perfectly reasonable for a new party to take its time in the way you suggest. Certainly, Hone is beholden to no one at the moment.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      The way I see it, Mana need to have half a dozen or a dozen very well thought out attention catching and detailed policies rolled out into the public arena in the next 60 days.

                      That’s not a lot of time.

                      Further, the psychographic that Te Mana is aiming for often does not turn out to vote. They need to develop low cost and well organised strategies for getting their message out there and changing that, in a hurry.

                      Resource constrained and time constrained, its a hard ask.

                • Adele

                  Teenaa koe,VoR

                  The point of Mana is that it provides a voice to the dis-affected and the dis-possessed. It will be an insistent, persistent, and unwavering harmonic for the marginallised, and the trivialised. Mana will herald loudly over the scratchy,squeally platitudes of the other politicians.

                  Labour and National will be deafened by the racket.

                  Well, that is how it should be, Mana that is.

                  • The Voice of Reason

                    Kia ora, Adele.
                    I am starting to wonder if that indeed is the limit of Mana’s ambition. Until there is an effort to develop policy, it’s going to be hard to see Mana as anything other than a parliamentary pain in the arse. Now that’s not a bad thing in itself; I’ve been a pain in the arse myself from time to time. But sooner or later, the shouting has to stop and something solid has to come from it, otherwise it’s pointless even being there.
                    To me, that’s the point at which the Maori Party started to rot from the inside.  Having got seats, they were faced with the dilemma of what to do with them. The F&S made them a one trick pony to an extent and easy for National to manipulate in the absence of wider policies.

                    • Anna

                      Te Mana have been developing their flagship policy for some time. They’re now on the road to see if it flies with their constituents. I don’t think Te Mana have to reinvent the wheel, but set out what is crucial to them and the people they are aiming at. In some instances, Te Mana can find common ground on policy i.e. with the Greens and the environment and endorse work that is already done. Yes, you are right, Te Mana is focussing on the people that don’t get out to vote much. Why? Because, arguably, there was no-one they wanted to vote for. It’s largely untapped and it’s full of the youthful Maori population. What is sometimes overlooked is how different the make-up of the Maori population is in comparison to the Pakeha population. Approximately 80% of our population is under 40. Approximately 50% of our population is under 15.

                      On the Maori Party: I think people underestimate the animosity between Tariana Turia and the Labour Party. There is a rationale in there about why the Maori Party went with National.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Agreed. As long as Tariana is with the Mp, the Mp ain’t working with Labour. Not complex that one.

                      That’s at the top level of course; she can’t stop people at the branch and mid levels chatting to each other 😉

                  • lprent

                    It’s supporters are noisy – there is no doubt about that. But in the blogosphere so are Act and even the remains of the Alliance. The issue as the Alliance and Act have found before is not how noisy they can make their activists. It is how they can build supporters that support them as a party rather than just being tactical voters. I am picking that Act will drop out of parliament this year largely because the tactical voters didn’t like who they put into government.

                    Speaking as a moderator, I really don’t care how much noise is made so long as it conforms to the policies of this site. Which pretty much mean respecting other people’s right to be heard, engaging with others, not droning to point of boring the moderators, and generally being respectful of your hosts who put the effort and resources in to keep this place running and filled with discussable posts. Apart from North (who discovered our view on the latter the hard way) it has been fairly good from this latest round of noise….

                    • Anna

                      Pssssst. I quite like North’s views. He’s spot on where Maori politics are concerned. I didn’t see the post you deleted/moderated, but his other ones were bang on.

                    • lprent []

                      I didn’t mind his views – and except in extreme cases we do not moderate for that.

                      His behavior however was unacceptable mostly because he wasn’t bothering to think or look at other participants on site. As far as I could tell, he seemed to think that everyone who disagreed with him was both a member of Labour and racist. This included a couple of right wingers, a anarchist, someone who still yearns for the internationals, and the site as a whole. The latter was what got him banned.

                      It is the behavior pattern that we usually see from the right – that of a troll. In his case I suspect it was because he was new to nets and hadn’t bothered to do enough reading before he started shouting.

                      All of his comments are present. Some have my notes on them. Use the search @author North

        • Jenny

          “I am glad that Phil Goff has ruled out working with Hone.”


          Zoobaby, Goff may have ruled out working with Harawira but when asked by reporter Kate Chapman, what other Mana MPs he would work with, Goff volunteered “any non Maori” Mana MPs, but which Goff said he “did not believe” Mana would bring into Parliament. Voice of Reason agreed mentioning that at number 1, Annette Sykes is the most likely Mana candidate to get into parliament besides Harawira.

          But the door is still open.

          Personally I think Goff was misreported and what he meant to say, was that if Mana got more than two MPs, then he would work with Mana.

          This is a sensible and pragmatic approach, and what I would expect.

          Of course if Goff is talking literally that he is prepared to work with “non Maori” Mana MPs, this could be achieved if the Mana Party agreed to replace Annette Sykes with someone like John Minto or Sue Bradford.

          Though realistically, I would expect that such an accommodation by Mana would cause the gorge to rise in most Maori, costing Mana votes in their core constituency.

      • Tangled up in blue 26.1.2

        I disagree. Labour needs to get the centre swing voters back from National. There’s NO WAY that’s going to happen if Labour supports Harawira.

        • Colonial Viper

          Yep. Labour is not supporting Harawira in any way shape or form. End of story.

  27. Jenny 27

    I really can’t believe this is true.

    When asked by reporter Kate Chapman. whether he would work with ‘any’ Mana MPs Phil Goff reportedly said he didn’t think that Mana would bring any “non-Maori” MPs into Parliament.

    “I don’t think Maori people like to see the squabbling between different political parties. It’s all very well for Hone now to say he wants to talk but just two days ago he was using pretty foul language about what he thought of the Maori Party and what they’d done.”
    Everyone who had worked with Mr Harawira in the past had fallen out with him which showed he was not a strong coalition partner, Mr Goff said. He has repeatedly ruled out working with Mr Harawira himself.

    Asked about other possible Mana MPs, Mr Goff said he did not believe they would bring any non-Maori MPs into Parliament.

    I really hope this is a misquote.

    If it is not, Goff needs to be immediately benched alongside Alasdair Thompson.

    If it is a mash up by Chapman, she needs to be sacked.

    • Anna 27.1

      @ Jenny – Hmmm. That does not read well! I’ve found this article which is similar, but reads a bit different:

      BTW: If Goff thinks “pissed off” and “bullsh#t” is really foul language, he needs to get out more.

    • The Voice of Reason 27.2

      It’s just the reporter’s summary of Goff’s position. If it was a quote, it would have quotation marks around it. I suppose it might literally true anyway, depending on whether Mana are able to get another seat somehow and who that MP might be. Annette Sykes, perhaps?

      • Anna 27.2.1

        I think Annette is at 2 and John Minto is at 3. I’ll see if I can find some more info, but I remember the positions of those two (off the top of my head).

        • The Voice of Reason

          I think that’s the likely scenario, but it’s still a hard ask getting any list MP’s elected. Look at Jim Anderton, hugely popular in his seat, but unable to get any traction nationally. Same for Peter Dunne.

          • Anna

            True, but we’ll see come November.

          • Colonial Viper

            The thing with Anderton and Dunne (and Peters) is that the show is all about them individually. It’s not a cohesive team willing to go out and bat for a broader movement.

            If Hone makes the same mistake and refuses to build a multi-polar party where he does not have all the say on everything, then he is going to be a permanent one MP party just like them.

            This IMO is the biggest risk for Mana.

      • Jenny 27.2.2

        “I suppose it might literally true anyway, depending on whether Mana are able to get another seat somehow and who that MP might be. Annette Sykes, perhaps?”

        Voice of Reason

        Yes VOR it might literally be true, Annette Sykes as number 1 on the Mana list.

        Annette Sykes is not “non-Maori” so Goff will not work with her.

        VOR are you suggesting that number 1 on the Mana list should be a white, to get around Goff’s colour bar?

        If so, who do you think it should be?

        John Minto?

        Sue Bradford?

        Maybe we should ask Mana to bump Annette Sykes down to number 3

        Would that satisfy Labour’s view of Maori women’s position in politics?

        • Anna

          @ Jenny – I agree. Annette Sykes is at the top of the list because she deserves to be there. If I was Te Mana I wouldn’t let what Goff has said affect the list in any way. I hope he’s been misrepresented here because it sounds pretty prejudiced.

  28. Ayo Hone…If you’re gonna present an olive branch to the Maori Party, don’t wipe your arse with it first !!!

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