Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Any excuse for a party

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Lea Barker,

    I can see the argument there, but I'd rather do without a head of state who has to meet a religious qualification -- imposed by a foreign Parliament three hundred years ago -- that would not only be unjust but illegal to impose on our government.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12040 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Lea Barker,

    Far better to have a parliamentary democracy in which ministers, including the prime minister, have to answer for their actions to the people's representatives on a daily basis.

    That's not the opposite of a republic. Changing the nominal head of state doesn't have to mean going the US route. We could - and should - create something that reflects this nation's people and ways and histories.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16794 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Anyone else think that Key going on about his 'greenstone suit' sounded like he was shilling for a client?

    then there's this

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2179 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    It's a fact that not only have all of Elisabeth Windsor's children's marriages ended in divorce

    Uh, Edward and Sophie?

    And Charles and Camilla.

    Which is good role modeling stuff. I was able to explain to my daughter how life isn't a fairy tale. And that Prince Charles first marriage to the boys mother, lady Diana didn't work out, so they separated. And that this was the healthy and appropriate thing for all concerned.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2752 posts Report Reply

  • Adzze, in reply to Neil Graham,

    To the kitsch I add this work of genius.

    http://guandongenterprisesltd.com/

    Bahaha - and I particularly enjoyed the ornate detailing.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2010 • 7 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Lea Barker,

    Far better to have a parliamentary democracy in which ministers, including the prime minister, have to answer for their actions to the people's representatives on a daily basis.

    We'd be a Parliamentary republic with a mostly ceremonial head of state, like Ireland is.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18991 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to Lea Barker,

    There is no reason why an NZ republic should separate a powerful executive (president/governor and cabinet) from the legislature

    In fact, only a minority of republics (such as the USA and France) do this.

    Most republics have a titular president with limited powers, with the head of government being the parliamentary majority leader (Ireland, Germany, India, etc) or combine the roles of PM and head of state (South Africa).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4467 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    Lea, Russell's answered the question as I would have. The US republic is a particular arrangement and separates the legislature from the executive in a unique way. We'd not have to, or want to, follow their approach... which is federalist too. My preference for a republic is to simply replace the Governor General with a domestically appointed head of state with largely the same, ceremonial powers (I'll leave others to talk about the "reserve powers" if they so wish).

    There is an issue of how they are appointed of course. Debate over this - appointed by all of parliament or by through a separate election - was partly what derailed the 1999 Australia referendum

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    I rarely agree with Nick Cohen but this time I'll go along with him:

    When the 18th century English dissenter Richard Price, friend of Thomas Paine, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, warned that fawning before royalty produced "idolatry as gross and stupid as that of the ancient heathens," he aptly titled his denunciation "A Discourse on the Love of Our Country."....

    ........The trouble with monarchy, however, is that, by definition, no one can stop the Prince from becoming King Charles III, because the British are not allowed to vote for their head of state. Charles Windsor constantly interferes in politics and promotes every variety of reactionary superstition and new-age quackery. He sounded like the leader of a messianic cult when he announced in a recent book, "I would be failing in my duty to future generations and to the Earth itself if I did not attempt to ... indicate possible ways we can heal the world." Yet whatever his personal failings, he will be King because he was born to the right mother.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3208 posts Report Reply

  • chris,

    I believe New Zealand’s future can only be as a republic.

    ….thereby nullifying the Treaty of Waitangi. Bridge burning equipment on standby.

    As for NZ becoming a republic, Russell–try living in one for a decade and you’ll soon change your mind…..Give me a hereditary monarch with extremely limited powers any day over an elected one with real power and no-one to answer to. Even if the chief executive is voted out after four years, they can do a lot of damage in the meantime.

    Ditto. That kiss(es) was a beautiful scene. I think social/ political investment in that moment benefits us as people and as a nation.

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz, in reply to chris,

    I already explained why it did't affect the Treaty upthread at:
    http://publicaddress.net/system/topic/3006/?p=211115#post211115

    Or see the Republican Movement's explanation here.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4467 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Make no mistake, it affects the Treaty Rich of Obsevationz. Currently the original signatory (the British) still have a stake in the agreement, removing them entirely will certainly alter the dynamic of the relationship between the parties.

    Why would you fire your Guardian Angel?

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to chris,

    I love the way you think you know better than other people here chris – and I’m saying that as patron of the (A)NZ Republican Movement.

    Just go check out the Statute of Westminister eh?

    Or, possibly, give some sites/references that might support your view?Especially the part that 'the British' still 'have a stake in the agreement'?

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    Chris, becoming a republic doesn't necessarily disrupt any obligations under the Treaty, it might transfer them but the reality is that the UK offers no real contribution beyond access to higher courts... oh hang on...

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Islander,

    I don’t think I know better than anyone here Islander. Perhaps I’m wrong, I simply worry that over 37% of New Zealanders want the treaty removed from New Zealand law, that if this number were to increase significantly, then the Governor General and the British system itself could be the last recourse of mediation in such an instance.

    Perhaps it’s naive of me, but I see Britain as a last line of insurance against gross mismanagement of New Zealand for the price of minimal political interference. As evidenced rightly or wrongly in the case of David Bain.

    is that the UK offers no real contribution beyond access to higher courts… oh hang on…

    You’re speaking my language Paul.

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to chris,

    That is an interesting take (word meant in both languages) on the subject chris-
    one of the things that Kai Tahu have found over the past decade is that - education works. Working in the general community (of the South Island mainly, but also north)- works. Making our huiatau/annual meeting open to everyone - works. There is waaay less racism/anti-Maori feeling now, than when I was growing up - indeed, for much of my adult life. There may have been a poll that showed "over 37% of New Zealanders want the Treaty removed from New Zealand law"- but I'd really like some details on that figure e.g: number of participants? Wording of question? Area/s participants came from?

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to chris,

    David Bain? Retried in an ANZ court - and what a fiasco that was.
    I emphatically do not think our court system perfect: the case of Peter Ellis remains as a kind of suppurating judicial sore...

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams, in reply to Islander,

    I’m unfamiliar with that poll Chris. Fortunately, neither a poll nor even for that matter a majority of electors of even MPs is sufficient to excuse the crown’s responsibilities under the Treaty. It is a matter for the courts, international courts if necessary as it was a Treaty between two sovereign parties. Any process toward republicanism would necessarily involve an agreement transferring any responsibilities owed by Elizabeth R to the NZ government. Anyone advocating for republicanism on any other basis is either wrong or foolish.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2233 posts Report Reply

  • chris,

    As the link says Islander; 2700 participants, but like any survey, it’s never going to give you a particularly clear indication of the feeling of the greater population, but it’s a high enough figure to cause some concern.

    David Bain? Retried in an ANZ court – and what a fiasco that was.

    Via the Privy Council.

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to chris,

    2008? Mmhmm – and not a lot of other info-

    and what precisely makes you think that ‘the British’ would be coming to the aid of Maori if the Treaty was ditched? Even if intervention was to 'their' possible advantage?

    Paul Williams - +1

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • chris, in reply to Islander,

    and what precisely makes you think that ‘the British’ would be coming to the aid of Maori if the Treaty was ditched?

    Simply that the maintenance of the British/New Zealand relationship leaves other legal avenues open for New Zealanders.

    Were New Zealand already a republic, for better or for worse such an avenue wouldn’t have been available to Bain.

    Can there be such a thing as too much justice? Looking at this case, arguably perhaps, but the odds are that the next person in need of this instrument may be more deserving.

    中国 • Since Jan 2010 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to chris,

    "other legal avenues"?

    Urm, which ones precisely?
    Our relationship - currently- is that of sovereign nation states who - regrettably, currently - happen to share the same head of State.

    You're possibly talking about an appeal to Elizabeth Windsor in person?

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    the Governor General and the British system itself could be the last recourse of mediation in such an instance.

    The G-G can be fired by the Prime Minister at any time, without cause.

    The British have zero input, except as one of 192 members of the UN. Even when the Privy Council was the highest court of NZ (that changed for cases after 2004) it acted as a hired adjudicator to interpret *NZ* law.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4467 posts Report Reply

  • Islander, in reply to chris,

    That avenue hasnt been available to Peter Ellis , chris- and I think it would make buggerall difference to his especial circumstances.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to chris,

    I don’t think I know better than anyone here Islander. Perhaps I’m wrong, I simply worry that over 37% of New Zealanders want the treaty removed from New Zealand law, that if this number were to increase significantly, then the Governor General and the British system itself could be the last recourse of mediation in such an instance.

    You are wrong, as we don't have any recourse to a British system any more. Which renders all of your points rather pointless.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2173 posts Report Reply

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