Legal Beagle by Graeme Edgeler

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Legal Beagle: Up to 11

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  • 3410,

    That said, and while I'm not big on all those fancy forms of tenses, they all seem at least some form of past tense to me:

    Someone presented an argument.
    I have been a supporter (i.e. in the past).
    I thought X (i.e. in the past) and now my view is Y. etc

    No. I didn't say that none of the three quotes contain any usage of the past tense, but that all three comments are indicative, either explicitly or implicitly, of the present tense, specifically "Not this time" in the first, " they’re no longer strong enough" in the third, and, in the second, the implicit "I have been a strong supporter [but no longer am].

    BTW, your repeated attempts at withering (see also: "If only you'd been earlier, this post could have been dedicated to you!") are rather tiresome. Good day, sir!

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    I have a question, and nowhere else I can think of to ask it: I would like to see the voting system change from MMP to STV. So my vote to "keep MMP?" should be "no" and "if not MMP, what instead?" should be "STV". However, I'm concerned that all the "No" votes will effectively be votes in favour of whatever's first past the post in the second question. If that's going to be FPP, I have a serious problem, as if I can't have STV, I would certainly prefer to retain MMP than switch to FPP. Basically, I want an STV vote on what voting system I want, but that's not what I've been offered, and it worries me. Am I missing something, or do I need to (strategically) vote to keep MMP rather than risk a no vote counting as a vote for FPP?

    ETA: I read on the referendum website that parliament would vote on whether to hold a second referendum between MMP and the most popular alternative - but does that mean that they could decide to change it straight away without holding a second referendum? I am out of NZ at the moment, which makes it hard to have these conversations in day to day life, or hear general coverage/discussion of the whole thing.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 578 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    Am I missing something, or do I need to (strategically) vote to keep MMP rather than risk a no vote counting as a vote for FPP?

    Whether your distaste for the possibility of return to FPP outweighs your desire for a move to STV is a matter I can't answer. There is a risk, but it may not be a great one. Certainly FPP seems most likely to win the second question, but even if it does, the plan is to have a second referendum, you could support MMP there if necessary.

    I read on the referendum website that parliament would vote on whether to hold a second referendum between MMP and the most popular alternative – but does that mean that they could decide to change it straight away without holding a second referendum?

    Not really. Parliament could technically do that anyway whatever the result, but a change to FPP would involve changes to entrenched sections of the Electoral Act, requiring a 75% majority in the House to change. There are academic debates about what entrenchment means, but the simple point is that parliament could. A change to SM (with a 70/50 electorate/list split) could be made without amendments to reserved sections, but the other systems are more complicated to implement quickly.

    All major parties have said they'll abide by result of this referendum, and I am confident in stating that before there is a change in the voting system that there will be a binding referendum.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3185 posts Report Reply

  • merc,

    Voting system is fine, let's have a referendum on asset sales, with a proper yes or no question that will be binding ;-)

    Since Dec 2006 • 2471 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Basically, I want an STV vote on what voting system I want, but that’s not what I’ve been offered, and it worries me. Am I missing something, or do I need to (strategically) vote to keep MMP rather than risk a no vote counting as a vote for FPP?

    I would imagine that there are, or will be, some polls that give a strong signal as to which way the two questions are likely to fall. They might help indicate whether you should vote with principles or strategically.

    I suspect that your support for STV is likely to be token. The second question is essentially a FPP election and FPP is likely to win it (ironically).

    Since Nov 2006 • 6242 posts Report Reply

  • tussock,

    I'm torn on the second vote. STV would make a reasonbale alternative to MMP given my own desires, but FPP is more likely to lose to MPP in the following referendum than STV is.

    Perverse incentive: vote for the system I least want. Then I may not even get the option to add STV to the MMP electorate seats, because no one voted for it earlier.

    And what I most want is the MMP referendum, to ditch the threshold, get multi-member seats (to compensate for the dwindling number of list MPs), and maybe more MPs in general (popular as mud, eh).

    Since Nov 2006 • 587 posts Report Reply

  • DCBCauchi, in reply to 3410,

    No. I didn’t say that none of the three quotes contain any usage of the past tense, but that all three comments are indicative, either explicitly or implicitly, of the present tense, specifically “Not this time” in the first, ” they’re no longer strong enough” in the third, and, in the second, the implicit “I have been a strong supporter [but no longer am].

    This looks awfully to me like reading too much into too little.

    Textual criticism, by which I mean deciding what is really meant from written words, is difficult. No-one seems to know how to do it any more. All they do is project their own biases instead.

    I blame the educational system.

    Since Feb 2011 • 320 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler, in reply to tussock,

    I’m torn on the second vote. STV would make a reasonbale alternative to MMP given my own desires, but FPP is more likely to lose to MMP in the following referendum than STV is.

    I'm not sure that's true. If MMP loses the first referendum then it must be possible it will lose the second. Ask yourself: "would I prefer MMP to lose to FPP, or would I prefer MMP to lose to STV" and vote accordingly.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3185 posts Report Reply

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