Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: The flagging referendum

165 Responses

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 5 7 Newer→ Last

  • Joe Wylie,

    Anyone remember the barrel-scraping flag antics of the terminal Muldoon era? (scroll down to "1980s revival"). Getting into a taxi back then that happened to be flying the NZ flag guaranteed you a driver with a chip on his shoulder the size of the Kaiangaroa forest.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • william blake,

    . Now that it looks certain the 'Lockwood' version is going to MOTAT, Key and his merry band of spinners are labelling the process politicised.

    I think the flag that best represents Key, Farar, Hooten, Croby, Textor et al is a giant kids windmill, pointlessly spinning.

    Since Mar 2010 • 378 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to BenWilson,

    Better for what?

    Better merely for registering protest (without caring about – or affecting – the outcome), in that failure to vote has no single assigned meaning, and no direct count; but “informal votes” are tallied, and can be interpreted less ambiguously as protest rather than apathy or laziness.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1887 posts Report Reply

  • Mr Mark,

    Recent Poll Results on the Proposed Flag Change (with demographic / party support breakdowns)
    See my latest two posts
    http://sub-z-p.blogspot.co.nz/

    (Tip: Tables look best via laptop - otherwise look a bit messy)

    - Mr Mark/swordfish

    Wellington • Since Dec 2009 • 127 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to Mr Mark,

    Interesting subgroup comparison by age: younger respondents (under 30y.o.) are more likely to favour keeping the current flag, whereas older respondents (over 55y.o) are relatively more likely to favour change (but even so, still show a higher absolute level of support for NOT changing). That generational trend goes against expectations that the young should be less conservative – and, considering who will have to live longest with the outcome, is a further argument against change.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1887 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to linger,

    Interesting subgroup comparison by age: younger respondents (under 30y.o.) are more likely to favour keeping the current flag, whereas older respondents (over 55y.o) are relatively more likely to favour change (but even so, still show a higher absolute level of support for NOT changing). That generational trend goes against expectations that the young should be less conservative – and, considering who will have to live longest with the outcome, is a further argument against change.

    Could it be more an indicator of good design taste, rather than social conservatism per se?

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5416 posts Report Reply

  • RaggedJoe,

    Could it be more an indicator of good design taste, rather than social conservatism per se?

    Talking to my 20 something y/o children and cohort, its more lack of engagement. Why change it? No good reason? Okay move along nothing to see here, leave it alone. Voting papers will go unopened I suspect, as they did first time round.

    For me, absolutely torn, no love for the old flag, but no excitement for the Lockwood. No new flag will ever get universal uptake, symbols take a long time to adopt, but it does happen after time. I could have voted for Red Peak but the Lockwood, sorry, cant bring myself to. So its another few decades of a confused colonial symbol for me/us is expect.

    City of Sales • Since Sep 2008 • 72 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to linger,

    in that failure to vote has no single assigned meaning, and no direct count; but “informal votes” are tallied, and can be interpreted less ambiguously as protest rather than apathy or laziness.

    There is a direct count. The number people on the electoral roll less those who voted, informally or not. I don't really see how the meaning is less ambiguous than an informal vote. Except in so far as it even more clearly signals disengagement. Which is the signal I want to send. You could call it laziness or apathy if you like. Or you could say that it clearly signals that the whole process is so far below the threshold of worthwhile activity that I won't even open the mail relating to it. I'm as "lazy" or "apathetic" towards it as I am to circular mail that comes to my box. I could show great energy in reading an entire catalog of carpet prices so that I can come to a more full and informed decision that I don't want to buy a carpet, and I could signal it unambiguously by giving the carpet shop a phone call to tell them that I don't want one of their carpets. Or I could toss it in the recycling, signalling the same thing without wasting anyone's time at all.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to RaggedJoe,

    So its another few decades of a confused colonial symbol for me/us is expect.

    Why decades? As Labour and Greens(?) have always been keen with public approval and with a proper process, for a flag change, I submit we could be up against change pretty soon, once a good design is agreed on, and because it seems to be understood why this alternative isn't popular, if we use the information gleaned from these referenda, we could cheaply continue the process in a few years to make positive change ,not negative change.
    For example, Tino and Hundertwasser flags have been given time on the benches and not bulldozed through to replace the current one. Perhaps the same could be done with new options without the expense?

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to BenWilson,

    That list of “ors” you give was exactly the point I was making about ambiguity.
    Non-votes conflate at least two distinguishable types of disengagement:
    “not bothered either way” (=> “toss it in the bin”)
    and
    “don’t bother me with this crap” (=> “ring up and complain”).

    What worries me is that in this case, the level of disengagement may actually influence the decision. Sleepwalking to a change of flag on a low turnout seems the worst possible outcome from this mess, because it commits us to the expense of rebranding on the basis of support from a minority of the population, and (as Graeme Edgeler suggests) it may further postpone any chance to revisit the design more meaningfully.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1887 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to BenWilson,

    Except in so far as it even more clearly signals disengagement.

    Which 1000,000 chose at the last Election. So yes, that 1000,000 has been significant in itself. I suspect the number of disengaged will be an interesting observation. Frankly, the mickey mouse affair of this debacle so far has created this situation, so spoiling , not voting is an option completely understandable ( I spoilt mine in the first round) but as a protest, I see keeping the current one the strongest option ,of which I'll do. I think the rubbish may be your most truthful option Ben but you can always help over at the "keep the flag" option for the likes of me ;)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • izogi, in reply to Sofie Bribiesca,

    I submit we could be up against change pretty soon, once a good design is agreed on

    I tentatively agree, but I’d not want to rush it. There’s no reason why the conversation can’t continue to happen, why people can’t continue to propose flags and talk about them, nor why it has to usurp conversation and resources and attention over everything else that’s important during the time it happens. If there’s a general mood that “something else” might be better some day, then maybe there’s justification to help along the process by throwing some minor resources at elevating the conversation here and there, helping people to see what’s possible and helping people draw connections to it. And when that happens, change might actually be an overwhelming consensus, possibly with no need even to narrow down possible options.

    But this whole current thing of “let’s have a giant referendum RIGHT NOW out of nowhere, even though nobody knows what we want…. but we use that silver fern on a black background for all our sports stuff so it’s really obvious that it’s a perfect flag which everyone’s going to want for everything. But wait, we’ll design something new over a few months!” We’ll have a competition which receives more than 10,000 alternative options, choose four of them with a committee, force everyone to narrow those four down to one, and have a vote on it. Right NOW!

    It’s really no wonder there’s so much resistence with that sort of forced process.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1139 posts Report Reply

  • Lila, in reply to TracyMac,

    TracyMac
    I've found the sight of the unendorsed Lockwood Logo the other day, flying from the Auckland Harbour Bridge instead of the Tino Rangatiratanga flag? I mean, genuinely offensive. If they were going to take something down, the old relic should have been removed instead.
    Yes, I tautoko your comment above but the old relic does represent the united tribes of Great Britain from whom we are all largely descended. The Lockwood flag flying was truly offensive.

    Paremata • Since Nov 2015 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to linger,

    Non-votes conflate at least two distinguishable types of disengagement:

    Sure, and the binary choice in the referendum conflates a whole range of views too. Most people saying keep the Union Jack are not doing it out of love for the Union Jack. All the signals are diluted. My signal is that this process is a waste of time and money, and I find not wasting my own time on it the clearest possible signal of that, beyond, of course, spending hours on the internet saying so :-)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Hmmm. I just received my ballot paper. In the information leaflet (English, only, unlike the "How to vote" leaflet, although you can download other language versions from their website) I find:

    Silver Fern Flag
    Designer: Kyle Lockwood
    The designer considers the silver fern a New Zealand icon which has been proudly worn by generations for over 160 years. The designer's intent is that the multiple points of the fern leaf represent Aotearoa's peaceful, multicultural society, a single fern spreading upwards representing one people growing onward into the future.
    The bright blue represents our clear skies and the Pacific Ocean, and the Southern Cross guided early settlers to our islands and represents our location in the South Pacific.

    Current New Zealand Flag
    Designer: Admiral Sir Albert Hastings Markham, KCB
    The royal blue background has come to represent the blue sea and sky surrounding us. The stars represent the Southern Cross constellation which can only be seen in the Southern Hemisphere, emphasising New Zealand's location in the South Pacific Ocean. The Union Jack in the top left-hand corner recognises New Zealand's historical foundations as a former British colony and dominion. This flag was officially adopted in 1902.

    One of these things is not like the other, to me. Am I alone in reading loaded language here?

    Also, according to Te Ara, the first use of the fern as a symbol of New Zealand was when it was "first worn by players in the 1888 New Zealand Natives rugby team which toured Britain." It's a long time since School C. maths, but that's not 160 years by any measure except dog (where it's a lot more).

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2930 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to nzlemming,

    This flag was officially adopted in 1902.

    This carefully misses the fact that it was designed and submitted to Governor George Bowen, and accepted by him in 1869, though based on the British naval Blue Ensign.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2930 posts Report Reply

  • linger, in reply to BenWilson,

    spending hours on the internet saying so

    *sigh* so true, that.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1887 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to nzlemming,

    Attachment

    Am I alone in reading loaded language here?

    Hell, no - that's chalk and cheese
    - New flag = uplifting positive
    old flag = tired and drab
    - it may as well be NLP (neuro linguistic programming)!

    The designer’s intent is that the multiple points of the fern leaf represent Aotearoa’s peaceful, multicultural society, a single fern spreading upwards representing one people growing onward into the future.

    If that's what he really wanted to do he would have included the inherent fractal nature of a fern frond's structure - it appalls me that Maggie Barry (allegedly a garden expert) thinks that that 'cartoon leaf' represents a silver fern.

    as it is it looks more like that invasive Australian fishbone fern ( it is also indigenous to the Hawaiian Islands - seemingly like Key - the American Frond?) - see above
    and anyway someone should have told him about that most appealing of ferns The Pony Tail fern!

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Ian Dalziel,

    Hell, no - that's chalk and cheese
    - New flag = uplifting positive
    old flag = tired and drab
    - it may as well be NLP (neuro linguistic programming)!

    NLP describes it perfectly - "what colour do you want your bowl, representing the sky, to be?"

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2930 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to linger,

    younger respondents (under 30y.o.) are more likely to favour keeping the current flag

    Could be waiting for something worth upgrading to? They do tend to have been exposed to more sophisticated design language their whole online lives than previous generations ever saw. Put the aoteatowel alongside anything by Apple.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Put this on the other fleg thread too - interesting post about origin myths.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Mr Mark, in reply to linger,

    Yeah, that age gap has been evident since polling on the issue began - going right back to the earliest (Aug 2011) Research New Zealand Poll.

    Probably partly associated with Party Support - the Under 30s significantly more likely to vote for/support parties of the Left Bloc than the Right. They're not huge JK fans.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2009 • 127 posts Report Reply

  • st ephen,

    Am I alone in reading loaded language here?

    Not subtle, was it. " Don't forget that our current flag was designed by some crusty old English toff - Admiral Sir Albert Hastings Markham, KCB?" Why is the name of the flag's designer suddenly relevant?
    Plus all that other stuff about how this is the time to decide which flag we'll stand for into the future, it's a unique opportunity, we could never possibly be given another chance.

    dunedin • Since Jul 2008 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Marketing dude Simon Pound is unimpressed.

    One last thought: can you imagine changing the national anthem and having no musicians?

    That is what we did here.

    We tried to change the flag with no-one with a fucking clue about flags or design anywhere in the mix and we got exactly what we deserved.

    .. for some value of "we".
    Let the referendum answer that.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19683 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Sacha,

    While I agree with Simon 99% I'm not sure about that call to allow children to vote on the basis that they'll have to live with the consequences of a flag change for longer than us old fogies. There were even calls to the Justice and Electoral select committee asking for the voting age to be lowered to just five years for this referendum.

    I daresay that if the flag panel had included children, laser kiwi might at least have made the final cut. But that logic surely applies equally to most of the important issues facing NZ today, including the TPPA and climate change. Undoubtably the children of today will suffer the worst effects of both. But would I want primary school kids influencing national policy decisions? No way.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1386 posts Report Reply

First ←Older Page 1 2 3 4 5 7 Newer→ Last

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.