Cracker by Damian Christie

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Cracker: Mix Your Members

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  • BenWilson,

    Legal Beagle already has a thread on this.

    I'm inclined to also doubt the motives of National, but I always do, on pretty much everything. That doesn't mean that a referendum is a bad idea, just that it ought to be done properly.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Does this mean they shouldn't get to vote on electoral change? No, but as I said to one young man at the Backbencher on Wednesday, nor is occasionally voting to change or retain electoral law a right, or even a good thing.

    I thought it was a good thing last time I did it (despite voting against, I'm somewhat embarrassed to say).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • andrew gunn,

    These old TV clips are choice. I have just watched Ep 1 with the famous Thingee eye-popping. Like with Kennedy's assassination and the crowning of Lorraine Downes, many people can remember what they were doing when this happened. But here's the spooky thing: it never actually aired on the Son Of A Gunn show - though folks will swear that's when they saw it. The show was pre-recorded and they did a retake. The clip only turned up on TV later as a blooper.

    Why do I know? Well, I had a hand in writing the show. And if you don't believe me, ask a certain current TVNZ director who had a hand in Thingee.

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2009 • 45 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    a fantastic Avis ad from 1981

    I finally realise, nearly 30 years after the fact, that they're doing a car-rental variant of The Pointer Sisters' 'Fire'. Which is an oddly hot-n-sexy song to use.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    It was never promised when MMP was voted in all those years ago, that we’d have a rethink a decade or so down the track,

    Actually, I'm pretty sure it was. I remember part of the public information campaign was that in the event of a change, there would be a follow-up referendum 10 years after introduction, basically to allay the concerns of those in favour of the status quo. Can't cite any source though.

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    ...just looking around the net, it appears that there wasn't any promise of a referendum, but a lot of people believe there was. Found this article by muriel newman saying that what was actually promised was a "full review", held in 2001. An earlier article by don brash says the same thing. I'm now wondering if someone was deliberately spreading disinformation.

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    That Avis ad in turn reminds me of the awful sexist Hertz ad from the '80s. It used "To know him is to love him", but with "To know Hertz is to love Hertz" and ghastly soft-focus footage of female counter staff pouting at the camera. The implication was, dear businessman, that the Hertz ladies would look after you.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    Talk of a referendum on MMP is interesting. Just last night I saw the 1996 documentary "Someone Else's Country", which looks at the economic policies of the Lange/Palmer/Moore Labour government and the Bolger National government (and concludes there wasn't much difference between them).

    The film ends with the MMP referendums (first one to see if the voting system should be changed, second one to pick the system to change to).

    When it looked like MMP was going to be the favourite, there was suddenly Peter Shiftcliffe's Coalition for Better Government started a pro-FPP campaign with scare-mongering ads. There'll be more MPs which will cost the taxpayer $$$! It will fuck up the future for your children!!! Parliament will decent into chaos!!!

    If this is the fucked-up chaotic future, I like it.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • JLM,

    "Decent into chaos" - I like it!

    Judy Martin's southern sl… • Since Apr 2007 • 239 posts Report Reply

  • jeremy gray,

    Well, FPP would be a nightmare, but maybe we can sort out MMP a bit.

    We could use the MMP method from the German state of Baden-Wurttemberg and proposed but turned down for Scotland. These guys don't have party lists - the list seats are instead filled by the candidates who lost their electorates by the smallest margin. This gives more chance of voters to keep out someone unpopular with them, but high in the party list (eg Roger Douglas).

    We could also get rid of the 5% threshold - I can't really see any reason to keep parties out if they have enough votes for a representative.

    point chev • Since Apr 2008 • 44 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    "To know Hertz is to love Hertz"

    I always thought that ad had a strange masochistic air about it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • andrew llewellyn,

    . The implication was, dear businessman, that the Hertz ladies would look after you.

    I knew one of those Hertz ladies from university (shock horreur, they were models!).

    And sadly, she didn't. But probly for the best.

    Since Nov 2006 • 2075 posts Report Reply

  • Brenda Leeuwenberg,

    That news footage of the protestors is pretty potent stuff!

    For those that are interested, the Merata Mita documentary Patu! covers the 'mass civil disobedience' that took place in 1981 around this tour. The doco is available in full here and also Try Revolution which looks at the situation in South Africa at the time.

    Wellington • Since Oct 2008 • 41 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    We could use the MMP method from the German state of Baden-Wurttemberg and proposed but turned down for Scotland. These guys don't have party lists - the list seats are instead filled by the candidates who lost their electorates by the smallest margin.

    At first read that sounded quite good. Second read, I don't really see how it counts as MMP at all. It's effectively a variation on FPP system - & would weight parliament in favour of the two biggest parties.

    It's the party's policies I'm voting for, and not any specific member. Even if I dislike half the party list, at least I can count on them being pretty consistent in their support of their own policies.

    Absolutely with getting rid of the 5% threshold though.

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

  • jeremy gray,

    My understanding of the system is that it shouldn't bias towards the big parties - you still get a party vote and they still get the same number of seats as under the current system.

    It is just who gets chosen that would change - eg the orange candidate may have come 3rd or fourth in the electoral vote, but may have had the highest percentage electoral vote in their party, and thus will be first in on the orange list.

    point chev • Since Apr 2008 • 44 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    At first read that sounded quite good. Second read, I don't really see how it counts as MMP at all. It's effectively a variation on FPP system - & would weight parliament in favour of the two biggest parties.

    I think it means that parliament would end up with the same proportion of MPs from each party as we do currently.

    But instead of them looking down the list and picking out the top X number of people who didn't win an electorate, they'd look down the people who lost electorates and pick the ones that got closest to winning.

    Same proportions, different method for filling what are currently the list slots.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I finally realise, nearly 30 years after the fact, that they're doing a car-rental variant of The Pointer Sisters' 'Fire'. Which is an oddly hot-n-sexy song to use.

    Indeed. Any guesses on who the local session singers are?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22753 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    The 5% threshold has some things going for it.

    Here's the last election results. If we gave seats for getting 0.8% of the vote (ie 1/120th) you can see that the Bill and Ben party would be in striking distance. One can imagine various extremist groups mustering 0.8% as well, and then using the financial and admin base of an MP to bootstrap a larger organisation. I'm not very upset about barriers to political movements that can't muster 5%.

    The experience of very proportional systems (I'm thinking of Israel here) is that sometimes tiny parties in coalitions don't smoothe out or moderate policy from big parties -- instead, they extract isolated crazy concessions.

    Frankly, I'd be just as happy to lose the coat-tail provisions that let list MPs come on an electorate win for a sub 5% party. We'd lose Act, United Future, and Jim Anderton's Progressive. Boo hoo.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Actually, ACT, UF and Progressive all have electorates, so they'd survive.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    One can imagine various extremist groups mustering 0.8% as well, and then using the financial and admin base of an MP to bootstrap a larger organisation.

    I can also imagine a lot of non-extremist groups doing it too. But that does depend on your definition of extreme. Under FPP, the Greens were considered extreme and fringe, and thoroughly worthy of the 0% representation they always scored in elections. Pacific Islanders probably waffle around the "fringe and extreme" numbers, and all the smaller ethnic groups do. Homosexuals do not, but quite possibly lesbians do.

    MMP was meant to be something of an answer to the tyranny of the majority, which is taken to extremes under a 2-party only system. A threshold simply discriminates against smaller minorities.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Actually, ACT, UF and Progressive all have electorates, so they'd survive.

    Turning on my internet telepathy for a moment: I think Stephen means that we'd lose the associated MPs, so it wouldn't be ACT, United Future, and the Progressives so much as Rodney Hide, Peter Dunne, and Jim Anderton, all on their not-very-powerful lonesomes. It would make a difference. (Or perhaps he didn't mean that at all; this internet telepathy stuff is dodgy as.)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    I've spent way too much time looking at different electoral systems -- and one of my conclusions is that I'm a big fan of the Baden-Württemberg approach. Combines the proportionality of MMP with a simple means for the voters to write the party list. Counting isn't a problem: we have computers; we can do such things now.

    You could also have each voter specify the party list -- but that becomes way complicated for the voter (and has other drawbacks). By the way, Einstein was from Baden-Württemberg, so, you know, they're brainy people -- ahem... with a few major lapses.

    I'll match Stephen's opinion that we should keep the five percent threshold, and raise him the idea that we should get rid of the exception for parties that win a seat. The threshold keeps out extremists, and fuck me I'm so completely in favour of that.

    Profs Palmer & Palmer agree with me, by the way (except that they don't say 'fuck me' in the middle of stating their point).

    EDIT: Oops, sorry Stephen. Re-reading I see that you're saying exactly the same thing...

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    This certificate confirms that
    LUCY STEWART
    has demonstrated competence in
    Internet Telepathy Level One
    by means of practical demonstration.

    Given this day

    etc etc

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Awesome.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2105 posts Report Reply

  • Heather Gaye,

    My understanding of the system is that it shouldn't bias towards the big parties - you still get a party vote and they still get the same number of seats as under the current system.

    OH, sorry, I getcha now. Thanks for clarification, that sounds way more sensible.

    Re: extremist groups getting in on less than 5%, seriously, if 0.8% of the population wish to be represented by a crazy, then fair do's to 'em.

    Morningside • Since Nov 2006 • 532 posts Report Reply

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