Winston Flags Referendum For Protest



New Zealand First has long been renowned as the party of direct democracy. As you’ll remember from such controversial issues as Asset Sales, NZ’s move from the Privy Council to a Supreme Court, and even our bills to legalize Euthanasia … where there’s a danger that the MPs and Parliament of our country will refuse to listen to the will of the people, we’re straight in with our demand for a Referendum.

So surely, we’d be unanimous in our enthusiasm for the government’s proposed flag-change referendum, right?


We support referendums because they offer a genuine choice to our voters, and a powerful tool with which to communicate to elected leaders what we *actually* want in a situation.

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Key’s vote on the flag, by contrast, is exactly the opposite of this.

The way it’s been set up, we don’t get to express a choice about whether or not we actually think we should change the flag.

Instead, we’re presented with an array of options and asked to pick the one we like most. Then, that flag is pitted against the one we’ve got now in another referendum some time later.

That’s not choice, and that’s not how it should be. Instead, it’s a carefully stage-managed attempt at coercing support for a flag-change from the New Zealand public that turns engagement with the whole process into a fait accompli.

In situations such as these, sometimes the only winning move is not to play.

That’s why NZ First Leader Winston Peters is urging New Zealanders to send the government a message.

When you go to vote in the first flag referendum, don’t tick any of the options on offer.

Instead, simply write “I support the current flag”.

The number of defaced ballots received is recorded; and it’s pretty much the only way to use your vote in the first referendum to tell the government what you actually think.

In the mean-time, continue to raise hell in public about this issue. The Nats are trying to take away your voice through railroading your vote.

And even though it’s a symbolic issue they’re doing it over … that’s important enough to mandate civil disobedience on your behalf.

Whatever you might think of the flag or the flag debate – it’s our democracy that matters, and what’s at stake.


  1. Why are the effects of changing the Flag, not being made public? Negates the Treaty of Waitangi/ Any civil rights/ Anything that the Crown holds for us/ Probable even Parliament// All vested in the Flag.

    • Maybe someone can research the political implications of our flag.
      Is it so that new migrants don’t have to swear allegiance to our laws and ideals .There is something more to the change than just because it looks like the Australian flag.More like we will have a USA component in it.
      With all the sly doings by this government its like being in a war zone.
      Why are the public having to fight Key at every step.

      • Isn’t it just a distraction from the signing of the TPP agreement?

        A bit like ” Secret courts ” in the UK. Brought into law at the same time as the Gay marriage Bill, while every one was looking the other way.

    • Can you please show were it states that changing the flag “Negates the Treaty of Waitangi/ Any civil rights/ Anything that the Crown holds for us/ Probable even Parliament// ” ?

      I am against the TPP(A) and people have been saying Key is only changing the flag to enable the signing …I have searched and found no connection between the “appearance” of the flag and it’s impact on any treaty ,existing or future.
      So please link to any law or statute that supports your claim.

      IMHO the flag change fiasco is just a Key regime distraction from the appalling job they are doing as a Government in general and to stop people looking into the TPP(A) in particular .

      NZ First’s Fletcher Tabuteau private members bill that proposes excluding ISDS clauses from any so called “free trade agreements ” is cause for John Key to be needing a very large distraction as it turns out.
      Imagine a “free trade agreements ” that effects 40% of world trade, that if signed gives multinational corporations more power than Governments not being the lead story on every News network in the affected countries … well you don’t have to imagine ,it’s happening right now !
      And here is our News networks talking about changing the flag almost every day !

  2. The actual process is flawed anyway (similarly to the referendum on electoral choices).

    Say 40% want to keep the flag and 60% want to change. Suppose further that the of the flag changers – 50% favor flag A, 20% flag B, 20% flag C and 10% flag D.

    If the people who don’t want change all vote for flag D – the least favored option (whether they like it or not) than the final tally will be – 30% favour flag A, 12% favour flag B, 12% favour flag C and 46% favour flag D.

    And then the last referendum will put the flag that flag changers want least (D) against the current flag and the current flag will presumably win.

    Actually an interesting concept for the flag would be that if it changes how you view it as it moves in the wind e.g. Lenticular printing – – I’ve done something similar with knitted wool fabrics so it should be doable with cotton. It could flash between the current flag representing our colonial history and a new flag representing our integrated history and place.

    • The trouble with your first suggestion is that we won’t know for sure what the majority of people (don’t) want until after the first referendum.

      I suspect that even if a majority of paper are spoiled, the powers-that-be will say they are legally required to have the the second referendum, pitting the “winning” flag against the current one, despite it having minority support.

      Your second idea is intriguing, but hardly practical for a flag that is readily mass-produced by printing or stitching and durable in all weathers. And it’s going to double the argument. There are easier ways to make our flag very distinctive, such as an unorthodox shape, or slots or holes in it.

  3. A poll by Labour party sent 11000 votes against the change of flag,National didn’t even open and read it.It was sent back because it was a block vote not individual ,so in that poll 11.000 people were ignored, it seems Key is saying ‘”You will have a new flag wether you want it or not”.
    This is a dictatorship not a democracy.
    One person gets to decide what we will have,the corporations puppet, whats in it for them we wonder.

  4. That’s why NZ First Leader Winston Peters is urging New Zealanders to send the government a message.

    Interesting bit of irony here…

    In 1997 a referendum saw 92% of voters vote against a compulsory private savings system promoted by then National-NZ First coalition Government Treasurer Winston Peters.

    The policy Peters advocated was essentially similar to the Kiwisaver Fund (except without the compulsion aspect).

    Voters rejected it, being more a referendum on Peters and his decision to coalesce with National in December 1996, rather than superannuation.

    A referendum on the flag could be a referendum on public feeling toward this current government.

  5. Another interesting item of news TIRSA another dodgy trade deal wants to get stuck into education and Charter schools, now we know why Charter schools were pushed on NZ, to soften us up for takeover by TIRSA. They want all schools to be private Charter schools, run by them of course for their own profit.
    When are NZs going to wake up to the fact we are being taken over, and the head salesman is John Key.

    • You said head salesman, I think you might have meant muppet.
      Whose hand is up where the sun shines, making his mouth move?
      If he is a puppet, who’s pulling the strings?
      So many questions, so little time until 2017?

  6. If govt wants a referendum on changing the flag, then the democratic process should be followed. Put it to the people, to gauge if Kiwis want to change it in the first place. The overall decision cannot be that of one politician (Key)! That is a dictatorship!

    Changing the flag is so unnecessary, considering the outrageous cost of $27m, would go a long way to alleviating hardship suffered by impoverished Kiwi children!

    • Dictatorship indeed Mary,

      FJK and his myriad of clones are deep into this shit as they undermine this country for their own gain.

      All these issues are “diversions” to have us busy concentrating on keeping us busy and away from other things they are scheming like the TPPA, RMA, State assets sales, more compliance laws restricting us all from carrying out our own repairs/maintenance, ( disgraced MP Maurice Williamson is still taking the lead on this)

      NatZ are using the pyramid principal where the planners of our society are at the top of the pyramid and control the whole 9 levels below.

      They first study their opponents to counter them and put plans in place so the lower tiers don’t know the total policy but only their orders, and the beneficiaries (themselves) don’t divulge their plans to benefit directly from the plans.

      See here how that works,

      so we truly need a Royal Commission into the whole Government structure now as it is all corrupted by Williamson, Key, and his clan’s Ponzi schemes.

  7. We have sent our e groups Winston’s plan and remind everyone that this Gov’t is out of control, as it spends big on things that don’t make any money such as Solid Energy and this flag referendum which it is really not a referendum but a plan to change the flag.

    We need to exact opposition pressure to show this up as this government as become fiscally bankrupt, while our Crown Debt now is almost $100 Billion and was only $8 million when they took over in 2008.

    Government pulled urgent rail maintenance funding from several regional railways including Napier Gisborne and caused the drains and culverts to fail during heavy rain causing washouts three years ago so they still need to fix the line they broke but wont spend four million there so why??????

    • “while our Crown Debt now is almost $100 Billion and was only $8 million when they took over in 2008.”

      Destroy us and rule by the new world order, did any one think Bill English would be a competent Minister of Finance? I didn’t.
      They are doing this stuff all over the western world now, it isn’t conspiracy theory any more.

      • The URL to the countries national debt is

        And I agree totally. The SUPPOSED party that are good managers of the countries finances, has increased our national debt exponentially.
        i.e. UTTER propaganda propagated by the Corporate Lame Street Media
        At least if Labour had been in power and lost as much money as this corporate National extreme right wing party, the working class would have had the money and had the benefit of spending (may be wasting) the increased debt, and it wouldn’t have been given as corporate benefits to the ubber wealthy as unaffordable tax cuts, foreign housing speculators and companies.
        D’OH !!!!!!

      • Strange thing Mike is you are correct it is global policy to drive our debt up to solvency.

        Then easily be conquered and be taken over by global financial monsters but why aren’t the opposition banging the drums in the media????

  8. 3Flags come under Admiralty law/commerce law #NZFlag
    Regarding the changing of the flag and it’s relation to the TPPA,
    what most don’t understand is that by changing the flag,
    NZ PM John Key is able to invalidate the Treaty of Waitangi and the^ *1986 Constitution (which includes the Treaty of Waitangi) that was signed under it.

    Our Constitution covers the Bill of Rights Act 1990, Human Rights Act 1993, Five Principles of the Treaty 1989, Magna Carta 1297, laws relating to individual rights, eg Education, Social Security, Privacy Act 1993, Public Works Act 1981.

    While ‘the changing of the flag’ does appear to be a red herring to divert from other issues, this in itself is required for the TPPA to go ahead to full potential. Our Constitution (including The Treaty of Waitangi) and the TPPA can not co-exist.

    Key has tried to get claims settled and has been hit with the fact that the Maori never intended to sign away sovereignty of NZ, but were told they were signing an agreement for joint rule. Key knows he can’t just make this ‘go away’, so he is deceitfully looking to invalidate the Treaty.

    REFERENDUM suggestion (Please SHARE): Rather than boycott the referendum as your form of protest, we ALL need to be PRO-ACTIVE in this so JK can not turn around and say “no one cared to vote which shows no opposition to the new flag”. Instead of voting for one of the 2 new flag options, we need to ADD our current flag to the list and tick against that option. Now, this will be marked as an invalid vote, BUT, JK can not say no one cared, AND our goal should be to FLOOD the referendum with as many of these invalid votes as possible to make sure our opposition is overwhelmingly heard. We need to spread this info to all. If you have a way of getting it into the media then do it.

    People need to know it’s not only the ‘cost’ of the flag that we need to be objecting to, but also JK’s underhanded and deceitful measures to invalidate an honest and legally binding treaty and Constitution, to in-act a secretive back room deal that sells our people out to Corporate power

    • I hope maori are aware of this,i just knew there was an agenda by Key .over the change of flag.
      I had an email today from a family member in uk,a journalist.comments in email…..

      Uk has now become a fascist country,(a dictatorship, run by one person ,)

      Meaningof word Fascist..

      .Authoritarian , Totalitarian..Autocratic. Dictitorial. Despotic. Undemocratic, Antidemocratic,.Militaristic, Nationalistic. Zenophobic. Corporatist.
      The media did a hatchet job on opposition parties,
      ,ie calling the Labour party all sorts of names and scaring people off voting by naming all the evils of a left government.
      Scotland was determined to ignor Tories and be united by their goal of not being controlled by London, they cleared the board,Tories left them alone because they knew SNP was valuable in getting rid of Labour traditional voters.
      So, as in NZ the media won the day ,by false reporting and supporting the Tories.sound familiar???
      Scotland proved the policy of unity,Northland displayed unity . so instead of refusing to join with like minded people and parties,Labour let its ego try to go it alone.National had the media, Labour had no one.

  9. From what I understand only the Treaty stands between jk & the TPPA
    // So this scam is one way to break the link between the Sovereign & Maori. NZ will lose. Sad.

    • And the Maori Party is complicit in it all.
      Bye bye Whanau Ora and bye bye Maori Party.
      It will be like English Tory Party – kill off the Lib Dems (Maori Party, Dunne and Seymour) and sneak in with a one-horse-Grey-haired-pony coalition party called Winston.

  10. Break off all the old links with the commonwealth…become a republic….get rid of the Queen as a symbolic representative,…the GG ,…what do you have?…NOT just a new flag but a REPUBLIC.

    They’ve been pushing this for years…( remember Bolger tried it and said NZ’s weren’t ready as yet ….) trying to wean this people off the idea of the commonwealth…its representative figurehead and our laws…the next step for a Republic is ….essentially to be tied by the economic apron strings to the USA…

    This isn’t about a flag…..its about a republic…and the TTPA and suchlike…whereby the grand plan of these globalists ( Key and co )….is by chipping away in small pieces -such as the idea of the possibility of a flag change….they not only gauge NZ’s acceptance for that change but our apathy as well.

    And how much they can push the envelope towards a republic which will be economically and militarily dependent on being under the USA’s umbrella.

    Look at the long term goal their after…the flag is just a small step – a litmus test – to what they are really aiming for.

    Why else would they risk the ire of a significant portion of the older population who THEY KNOW are dead against it.

    They are testing us to see if the time is right to push more of their globalist agenda. Its THAT obvious.

  11. Can we vote for a swastika flag? That would be singularly appropriate for this awful shower…

  12. I personally would like NZ to be a Republic. If that happened there would be an obvious need to change the flag. If a referendum on a Republic failed then there would be no need to change the flag. And we save $26 million.

  13. You did it again! I had the right total in capcha column,was told enter figure in the capcha column ,is this deliberate?

  14. I’m really not sure where Key is going with this one. This could be just a giant distraction, and ego trip or who knows what, but there seems to be no great public appetite for a change in flag.

  15. Peters is controlled opposition – that is why he is worth millions, and not dead. His role here is to get people to vote, so it looks like their has been active participation/ interest.

  16. This year is the 800 anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta, The knights forced King John to sign at the point of the sword. He was doing what Our king John is doing today ,gave away land to foreigners,took decisions away from the people, sound familiar. Will we ever learn. JOHN KEY HAS TOO MUCH POWER he can do what he wants and you cannot do anything to change it. NZ wake up.

  17. Sadly, Key knows the vast majority, those who don’t want a flag change at this moment won’t bother to vote in the 1st referendum.

    That’s his plan, cos then those that do support him will vote for the flag of his choice (the one he signals he likes best).

    Because it appears to most that it is going to be the flag, despite people not wanting it changed, most will again choose not to vote in the second referendum, and Key will get what he wants.

    The flag change is just an immortality project for Key. He wants his name permanently recorded in history and this is a way of achieving it. He realises in time he will go down as a one of the most dishonest and corrupt PM’s NZ has ever had, but he will symbolically live forever due to this flag change.

  18. You absolutely get a choice about changing the flag. It’s in the second vote, when you have an actual option to compare with.

    I fully support anyone who’s annoyed, disgusted, or frustrated with the way this legitimate discussion is being used as a distraction from real issues making a deliberate no-vote. (Don’t just turn it in blank though, you should agree on some deliberate way to spoil the ballot that people can identify and count)

    But the way this referendum is being run is the correct way. You can’t vote on changing the flag without knowing what you’d be changing to. Yes, it affects the popularity of changing vs not, but it does so in a fair way, by representing a definite alternative. If that alternative is worse, people will decide not to vote for it. If it’s better, hopefully they will be able to set aside their nostalgia and give a fair vote on the matter.

    This isn’t the right time to be considering a flag change, (it should be part of the process to becoming a republic in my view) but if we’re going to have the referendum, we might as well consider the issue rather than just treating it as a National Party ploy. (Regardless of what John Key intended it as)

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