Reds not Greens

August 18, 2017

The Green Party has dropped 11 points to 4.3% in the latest 1 News Colmar Brunton  poll.

Their votes have gone to Labour as a result of a leadership change and because the Meteria Turei saga has shown that the Greens are really Reds.

It wasn’t that Turei committed benefit fraud all those years ago that did the damage. It was her total lack of contrition and that the remaining leader of the party, James Shaw, and all but two of her party supported her stance.

In his valedictory statement Kennedy Graham said:

What I should say, however, is this. There are two dimensions to the task of political representation. The first is political judgment. That is empirical, relative, contestable, and open to negotiation. It is 99 percent of our daily job. The second is when an issue of personal conscience arises. That is ethical, absolute, non-contestable, and not open to negotiation. If politics transgresses conscience, politics must cede. This is the decision we took. Simple as that.

Yet decisions taken on conscience can, of course, have political consequences.

Graham and David Clendon who also acted on principle lost their place on the party list and Graham’s request to return after Turei’s resignation was denied.

The party is paying the price of backing the wrong person and the wrong policy.

The fate of any political party will wax and wane. That is the nature of politics. But a party is simply an institution. An institution is a vehicle for the pursuit of ideals and principles. Like any vehicle, it requires ongoing maintenance.

Sometimes the way ahead is difficult to discern. Parties can lose their way. But they can also recover. I believe the Green Party will do so, on behalf of the green movement around the world. Individuals come and go, but the institutions remain, to serve the ideals they cherish. . .

The Green Party lost its way by taking the red path. Strong recovery will only happen if it stops being red and starts being green.

A party with a strong environmental ethos that was moderate on social and economic issues would sit in the middle of the political spectrum, able to govern with National and Labour.

Marooning itself on the far left of Labour gives the Greens no bargaining power.

Now that most of their support has gone back to the bigger party they are in risk of following the Alliance Party of which they were once a part, into political oblivion.

The Greens might get over the 5% threshold they’ll need to stay in parliament but if they want to have any influence they will have to shed the red and concentrate on the green.

2 MPs quit Green list over Turei

August 7, 2017

Patrick Gower at Newshub has just reported that Green MPs David Clendon and Kennedy Graham have resigned from the party list in protest over Meteria Turei’s failure to resign.

The problem isn’t what she did all those years ago, it is her refusal to accept responsibility, admit she was wrong and apologise.

Turei’s attempt to use her own wrong-doing to advance an impossibly-expensive welfare policy has highlighted the party’s socialist leanings.

Lloyd Burr was right, the Greens have lost their way:

. . . The party doesn’t look like the strong, unwavering voice for the environment anymore.

It is not focussed on forests and rivers, or climate change, or conservation underfunding, or waste and pollution reduction.

It is now a party focussed on fighting for the rights of beneficiaries. It is focussed on legitimising benefit fraud, boosting welfare payments, and removing welfare obligations. . .

If the Greens were moderate on social and economic policy they could sit in the middle of the political spectrum like the Maori Party, able to go left or right.

Instead their environmental concerns are overshadowed by far-left social policy.

The party’s refusal to censure Turei has added to its troubles with only Clendon and Graham showing any integrity over the issue.

Browning not wanted on Green voyage?

March 17, 2014

Paddington Bear had a suitcase labelled wanted on voyage.

The Green Party initial list  shows their agricultural spokesman Steffan Browning is not wanted on their voyage beyond the election.

He was 10 in 2011 and has dropped to 16 in this list.

The party currently has 14 MPs, they’d need a better vote than they got in 2011 if he’s to return to parliament.

1 Turei, Metiria
2 Norman, Russel
3 Hague, Kevin
4 Sage, Eugenie
5 Delahunty, Catherine
6 Hughes, Gareth
7 Graham, Kennedy
8 Genter, Julie Anne
9 Logie, Jan
10 Shaw, James
11 Walker, Holly
12 Clendon, Dave
13 Roche, Denise
14 Mathers, Mojo
15 Davidson, Marama
16 Browning, Steffan
17 Coates, Barry
18 Hart, John
19 McDonald, Jack
20 Leckinger, Richard
21 Rotmann, Sea
22 Moorhouse, David
23 Elley, Jeannette
24 Ruthven, Susanne
25 Perinpanayagam, Umesh
26 Perley, Chris
27 Moore, Teresa
28 Kennedy, Dave
29 Langsbury, Dora
30 Barlow, Aaryn
31 Lawless, Jennifer
32 Woodley, Tane
33 Goldsmith, Rachael
34 Rogers, Daniel
35 Kelcher, John
36 Smithson, Anne-Elise
37 McAll, Malcolm
38 Ferguson, Sam
39 Ford, Chris
40 Hunt, Reuben
41 Wesley, Richard

The 2011 list was:

1 TUREI, Metiria
2 NORMAN, Russel
3 HAGUE, Kevin
4 DELAHUNTY, Catherine
5 GRAHAM, Kennedy
6 SAGE, Eugenie Meryl
7 HUGHES, Gareth
8 CLENDON, David
9 LOGIE, Jan
10 BROWNING, Steffan
11 ROCHE, Denise
12 WALKER, Holly
13 GENTER, Julie Anne
14 MATHERS, Mojo
15 SHAW, James
16 HAY, David

Gareth Hughes and Kennedy Graham have swapped places from 2011.

. . . “The list we are releasing today is by no means final. It is just a useful guide for members all over the country to use when making their own personal selection.”

The initial list is put together by delegates and candidates who attended the party’s February candidate conference. Delegates were able to put candidates through their paces and evaluate their performance. The initial list now goes to party members nation-wide to vote on. The Green Party uses STV voting. . . .

The useful guide clearly indicates that Browning wasn’t rated highly by conference goers.

That view will be shared by most farmers who would not want him anywhere near the primary industries portfolio.

Frequent commenter here, Dave Kennedy is at 28.

Another good reason to vote National

December 4, 2012

The Green Party wants Cabinet positions in proportion to its vote should it be in government with labour after the next election.

On the surface that seems fair, but which positions does it want?

Dr Norman wants Finance, Metiria Turei could get Social Development, Kevin Hague may get Health, Kennedy Graham could go for Trade, Eugenie Sage for the Christchurch rebuild, Gareth Hughes with Energy, and Catherine Delahunty with Education.

It’s not just the number of positions but their importance which ought to be taken into account. Some positions in Cabinet are more equal than others.
These are all very important positions which would have a very big impact on how much money the country earns, how it earns it, how much the government spends and how and where it spends it.
Having the Green Party wield that much power provides another very good reason to vote National.

Greens +1 Nats -1 after specials counted

November 22, 2008

The Green party gained an MP and National lost one in the official election results when special votes were all counted.

That means Kennedy Graham will become and MP and Cam Calder, the last MP in on National’s list won’t be.


Polling Places Counted: 6,656 of 6,656 (100.0%)
Total Votes Counted: 2,356,536
Party Party
National Party 1,053,398 44.93 41 17 58
Labour Party 796,880 33.99 21 22 43
Green Party 157,613 6.72 0 9 9
ACT New Zealand 85,496 3.65 1 4 5
Mäori Party 55,980 2.39 5 0 5
Jim Anderton’s Progressive 21,241 0.91 1 0 1
United Future 20,497 0.87 1 0 1
New Zealand First Party 95,356 4.07 0 0 0
The Bill and Ben Party 13,016 0.56 0 0 0
Kiwi Party 12,755 0.54 0 0 0
Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party 9,515 0.41 0 0 0
New Zealand Pacific Party 8,640 0.37 0 0 0
Family Party 8,176 0.35 0 0 0
Alliance 1,909 0.08 0 0 0
Democrats for Social Credit 1,208 0.05 0 0 0
Libertarianz 1,176 0.05 0 0 0
Workers Party 932 0.04 0 0 0
RAM – Residents Action Movement 465 0.02 0 0 0
The Republic of New Zealand Party 313 0.01 0 0 0
  70 52 122

Grey Greens might be better than red Greens

May 22, 2008

Chris Trotter’s column in The Independent (which I’ve been unable to find on-line) addresses the greying of the Greens.


Nine years ago, when Rod Donald and his “Magnificent Seven” cantered up the steps of Parliament like a herd of eager, old-order destroying centaurs, their public image was one of youthful exuberance, reckless idealism and what might almost be called political gaiety. It was a mirage. Even then, most of the Green Party caucus were well into their 40s and 50s. Their most youthful member, Nandor Tanczos, was 33.


Nine years on, the youngest member of the Green caucus (and likely to remain so) is the 38 year-old Metiria Turei. Robbed of the ever-youthful personality of the late rod Donald the Greens have taken on a distinctly middle-aged appearance. … The average of the top 12 placeholders on the party list is a bracing (and very baby-boomerish) 52 years.


…I had foolishly assumed the Greens would be offering the electorate a party list chock full of candidates under 40: people whose best years were still in front of them and whose political lives would be dominated by climate change and peak oil, not Vietnam and the Springbok tour.


Setting aside the ageist comment that at an average 52 their best years are behind them, it is interesting Trotter should define the Green MPs and candidates, not by environmental issues by social ones.  And that is water-melon factor (green on the outside, red in the middle) which explains why the Greens have failed to gain much traction.


Had they been moderate on social and economic issues they would be the one party in the middle of the political spectrum which actually stood for something; and their ability to coalesce with either Labour or National would have ensured they achieved at least some of it.


Instead they are in the perpetual wilderness to the left of Labour so in spite of the cosy photo-ops of Helen Clark and Jeanette Fitzsimmons before the 2005 elections the Greens were left out of coalition talks at the behest of NZ First and United. The few achievements they are remembered for are not environmental but social – like the smacking ban, or socialist – buy NZ made. And while achieving little or nothing of note environmentally they have continued to support, or at least abstain on confidence and supply, a Labour-led Government which has overseen the worst deforestation in decades and an alarming increase in carbon emissions.


…Another 7% result would, however, be enough to bring ninth-ranked Kennedy Graham into parliament. A highly experienced and successful diplomat, lawyer and academic, Graham will bring an aura of upper-middle-class respectability to the Greens.


“It’s fair to say that, at 62, Graham (who is Sir Douglas Graham’s younger brother) is unlikely to attract a very big chunk of the youth vote.


But he might attract some of the middle-aged and older people who have the time and money to worry about saving the world.


Respectability would appear to be the watchword these days in the Green party…Departing from the parliamentary scene is of course …Nandor Tanczos.


He takes with him much of the party’s heart and spirit: that indefinable quality that distinguishes the Green ideology from mere environmentalism…What he was prepared to do was lead the fight to end the Green’s unhealthy passive-aggressive relationship with the Labour Party.


It was time he told me to reinvent the old Green slogan: “Not of the Left, not of the right but in front” with renewed meaning.


Fearing this could lead the party to enter into a coalition with the National party, the econ-socialist wing of the Greens organised hard and successfully to ensure the ex-pat Australian political scientist (Russell) Norman defeated Tanczos in the race for the party’s co-leadership.


…In 2008 however, it is the words of Virginia Horrock, No 19 on the Green Party list, that resonate most disturbingly. “I want to persuade my generation to face up to what has happened to the earth under our watch, I am keen to encourage grandparents/baby boomers to make the earth their final gift to the next generations. Green voters are predominantly over 55, like me, so I feel I can appeal to them as people with the same concerns.”


Noble sentiments, Virginia, but revolutions are not made by people who are “predominantly over 55”.


No, but they are more likely to vote and appealing to them with sound environmental policy without scaring them with a radical social and economic agenda would give them a powerful position in the centre, where the power of MMP politics lies.

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