Why yesterdays meltdown by new Government was so much worse than first thought

By   /   November 8, 2017  /   39 Comments

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And yes, that’s me getting into a twitter argument with the ghost of a fictitious tweeting cat, but even me arguing with the ghost of a dead cat is less stupid than what the new Government did yesterday.

This was such an appalling way to start the new Government…

Ummm, can you count Chippy?
No, Jacinda, I can’t count.
Grant, what about you, can you count?
Well, it’s not really my thing Jacinda.
Okay, is there anyone in the Caucus who can count?
Paddles can count!
Okay, get Paddles here

Turns out yesterday was far worse than first reported.

Not only did Labour not foresee National screwing them and handed Bill English a huge concession with more positions on Select Committees (which National will now use to slow their agenda down) – it turns out that the new Government did in fact have the majority and they simply fell for a bluff by National.

They never had to give National more positions on the Select Committees because if anyone in Labour could have counted they would have found they still had the majority.

That’s right, the new Government handed over a huge concession based on nothing more than National tricking them into not being able to count.

For. Fucks. Sake!

If I were the new Government I’d have a sack of kittens under the desk to execute at moments when their own incompetence is so blisteringly appalling they need to divert media attention with public sympathy for dead pets.

And no Paddles…

…that joke is not too soon.

And yes, that’s me getting into a twitter argument with the ghost of a fictitious tweeting cat, but even me arguing with the ghost of a dead cat is less stupid than what the new Government did yesterday.

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39 Comments

  1. tauputa says:

    It goes beyond incompetence. Interestingly it was Labours blue, we expect such bufoonery from NZ First, they are and will be the real weak link of this coalition.

    First day in the house, first fiasco – kind of sets the scene for the wild ride with the coalition of losers. Interesting days ahead.

    • Sam Sam says:

      It’s hardly a nock out blow. Now Treasury benches will have to spend more time scrutinising everything the opposition says. Just can’t lay down and play dead I suppose.

    • lloyd jordan says:

      still it wont be as bad as the last coalition of the 4 headed criminally insane

  2. Dotti says:

    Just a reminder that LYING is what they do well !
    The now opposition were not in the habit of giving much recognition to select committees while they were the government and have provided an example of how to deal with National now.
    To me the “over the top” and biased reporting of yesterdays events
    from parliament is more of a worry.

  3. remo says:

    goddamit ! Why couldn’t they see it coming !? It was in the faces’ of the neonat ghouls from day one. They’re coming for blood !
    Reported time-line is the Liar English opposition promised support for the vote before going in to chamber, then fked Labour by reneging. This was arranged beforehand as a double-cross by the sinister Brownlee/Bridges.
    This is template. This is who the neonats ARE. Liars. Cheats. Malevolent conspirators. Labour/green/NZ first better sharpen up.

    • lloyd jordan says:

      if that is the case then the gvt is wellwithin its rights to renege on the promise (gained by deception and
      falsehood) of xtra select committee seats

  4. Siobhan says:

    Careful Martyn, you know how The Nation gets all het up about cats, just ask Gareth…

  5. dave brown says:

    Just put the legislation for the 100 days into one bill under urgency and give NACTs some of their own medicine.
    If the NACTs complain just say that the urgency is down to 9 years of them screwing the working people of NZ.
    100 days for every year of NACTs in office.
    Offense is the best defence.

    • Nick J says:

      Too right, some draconian legislation re nitrates in rivers and river bed ownership might just slice National apart, lets face it Fed Farmers are unnatural allies for urban corporate types who think swimmable rivers are a good idea. Give the fekkers a dose of their own.

    • roy cartland says:

      Agreed!

    • Danyl Strype says:

      This would be my first instinct too, but I have to say it’s a knee-jerk one. The abuse of urgency by the NatACTs is currently an exception. If Labour follow their lead, there’s a risk of it becoming standard practice. A majority rules government whose decisions cannot be over-ruled is bad enough (no upper house, Supreme Court, regional autonomy, or citizen’s juries able to discipline parliament), but it would be even worse if the only oversight mechanism in our governmental system had its few teeth ripped out with normalized urgency.

      Another option would be for every organisation that expects wins out of the new government to hold workshops, showing their supporters how represent themselves to select committees effectively, both in writing and in person. That way we renormalize and reinforce citizen oversight of parliament through select committees, and we all get to spend the next 3 years holding National to account for their actions over the last 9 years. Instead of being a win for National, having all their people in select committees becomes a way to put them in the stocks and throw their rotten policies back in their faces.

      • dave brown says:

        Danyl I would agree with you if I had any confidence in parliamentary democracy.

        When the tiny minority corporate 1% and their hangers-on can use dirty politics with impunity to swing voters, when they control the corporate media to push their lies, when most opinion makers embed neo-liberal assumptions into the popular culture, making a phony appeal to committees as ‘democratic’ is a diversion.

        The committees reflect the make-up of Government. There is no better democracy on offer from the bourgeoisie than a unicameral parliament under Proportional Representation. The screams of anger coming from the right that their election has been stolen bty MMP is evidence of this. And when was the last time that any significant modification of Government bills was altered through select committees?

        Under the NACTs and Billy the Liar’s threat to destabilise the Government, select committees are turned into their opposite, an undemocratic sabotage of effective government.

        NZ democracy has become rule by cabinet, which under Key became rule by PM. Cabinet subordinates parliament (and committees are rendered hollow) and the bureaucracy is now much more under cabinet control.

        It is not a question of turning a bad precedent into a bad practice. Committees cannot be seen in isolation. The NACTs used urgency as a matter of course to get their minority agenda pushed through because the growing crisis of international capital demands the jettisoning of democracy to force working people to pay for the crisis of capitalism.

        If you want to counter-pose real democracy, to the rotten unrepresentative parliamentary democracy, look not to checks and balances in the government institutions where power rests finally with the big corporates, but to the checks and balances of the majority of working people, whose interests are not represented by parliament.

        We should see ‘urgency’ for what it is – urgency on behalf of one or the other class. The NACTs used urgency to serve their bourgeois class interests. The Coalition need the guts to use urgency to serve the interests of working people.

        Without the strong pressure from below of working people organising to hold the Coalition accountable to its weak reformist program, and to force through that program through urgency against all sabotage by the NACTs, it will hide behind exactly the argument you use, the fear of being accused of being ‘undemocratic’ by dirty politicians and a corrupt media.

        That why all the grass roots organisations that have been vocal about the TPPA, inequality, punitive welfare, water, privatisation, suicide, jails, etc etc., have to double down, coordinate their efforts in own own ‘select committees’ and tell the Coalition what they need and why they need it now.

  6. esoteric pineapples says:

    Hopefully they will learn from this mistake.

    • e-clectic says:

      Exactly – now they know what they are dealing with.
      “Fool me once…” and all that.

      • Sally's Husband says:

        ““Fool me once…” and all that.”

        Nailed it. The Nats may have won a victory, but they won’t be trusted again. i think they burned quite a few *bridfges* with that exemplary act of dishonesty.

  7. roy cartland says:

    Think about it this way: the Gov now has every excuse not to include this opposition in any way. NAT have unequivocally stated, and demonstrated, that they are not interested in upholding a functioning Parliament and Legislature, rather play their dirty games and hold democracy in contempt.

    Let them to their own idiocy and rule without them.

    • Slydog says:

      You have that round about. A strong opposition actually strengthens democracy by holding the Government to account. Its fundamental to any democracy. Arguably the weakness of the last opposition was bad for democracy. That’s the problem – we are not used to a properly functioning outward looking opposition.

      • There’s a world of difference between an Opposition that holds government to account and one that is obstructionist for ideological purposes. The former is legitimate. The latter is not and will ultimately reflect badly on the Nats as having an inflated sense of entitlement and born-to-rule mentality. Especially when they break their own agreements on co-operation.

        • Louis says:

          Exactly right Frank I thought you might be interested to know the NZ Herald has removed its stories on National’s use of urgency to pass bills.

          “National’s list of bills passed under urgency”

          “Editorial: Addiction to urgency sign of weakness”
          In its first two years in power, it used urgency for 331.5 hours, nearly double the time the former Labour Government sat under urgency in its full first term…

          “Brownlee unrepentant about government’s use of urgency ”
          Office of the Clerk figures show that in the two years since National came into Government in December 2008, Parliament has sat under urgency for 331 …

          Are now no longer available, why does the NZ Herald not want the former National government’s use of urgency known? Why hide it?

  8. Mike the Lefty says:

    My interpretation is that Labour thought they had a kind of gentleman’s agreement with National. A mistake. Labour should remember that National can never be trusted.

  9. bert says:

    Just balance that stupidity with Mike Hosking ranting about the state of our DHB’s. Mike has gone into overdrive ” where is David Parker, where is David Parker” Yes that’s right, not only did Mike get the name wrong, he was trying to blame the demise of the DHB’s on David Clark!

    Sometimes I truly believe Mike believes his own shit. Remember Coleman, yes that’s right, the one who was always unavailable for comment.

    Martyn, yes this appears to be a mistake by Chippy but in the grand scheme of helping out the most vulnerable, alongside all other New Zealanders, at least this is a government that is not corrupt.

    • elle says:

      David Clark MP for Dunedin is advocating for compulsary vaccination for
      pre school children.he says he likes the way Australian govt can force it on babies.
      In Wake Up New Zealand article he states,If your children are not vaccinated they will be banned from pre school
      and day care .
      Lots of data about the dangers of vaccinations, containing aluminium a known neurotoxin.
      Whatever people views regarding vaccination ,no MP should have the right to make parents do something against their wishes.
      If Labour coalition is going the way of Australia,using force ,then they as bad as National.

      • Historian Pete says:

        I’m with you all the way Elle!!

        • cleangreen says:

          Me too Elle,

          No vaccines for me now.

          As I wont trust the medicine fraternity after our public health medical service has informed me it does not have any treatment for my chemical poisoning accident that has disabled me since 1992.

      • bert says:

        When I do my rounds and have to walk through patients in beds, that are stacked up in the foyer of A & E, then there is a problem with how National have forced health on a downward spiral. My letters to Coleman went unanswered. As far as I’m concerned, any Government other than National will be an improvement. My suggestion to you would be to write to Clark, I think you would have a far greater chance of a response than I got from Coleman.

  10. J S Bark J S Bark says:

    Still just watching and waiting…

  11. David Stone says:

    It sounded to me like they had a clear understanding that Mallard would be appointed speaker and unusually an opposition member would be deputy.
    When it came to implement the arrangement national went back on the arrangement purely to embarrass the new administration. Informal preparations must go on all the time when the need is purely to facilitate the operation of parliament.
    I think national comes out of this having played a pointless and pathetically childish trick.
    D J S

  12. Cristina says:

    English is a poor loser. You’ld think held be used to it now.
    That Bridges will be lining himself up to oust Bill and take his place. The squeaky wheel Bridges.

    • garibaldi says:

      Four words. Hipkins is a twit.

    • bert says:

      I thought English was brilliant in opposition just a shame I could never say the same about him in government, the one big criticism I have of English is the christian boy tells so many lies, why would anyone trust what he says?

  13. Marc says:

    Yes, you got it, Martyn, a MAJOR embarrassment, and today, English hammered it home to the government, they will be pursued just like Angela Merkel will be hounded by the right wing AfD in Germany:
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/sep/24/afd-leaders-will-hound-angela-merkel-after-strong-showing-at-polls

    Luckily Labour, NZ First and Greens are on the right side of history, they simply must get their shit together, stand together, stand united and strong, and then Nats can shout, scream and scheme as much as they like, they will NOT have a shit chance to stop this progressive government bring the reforms we need, one starting tonight, again the Nats playing BS games, trying to stop it.

  14. Paul says:

    I disagree.
    This just makes National look petty.

  15. Veritas says:

    Although this was probably terrible for those lefties in the know, I don’t think the public necessarily blame Ardern. I’m a centrist and was totally unimpressed with National’s tactical display yesterday. Adern’s address today had a cringe year 13 feel, but she’ll master the role quickly.

  16. Michael says:

    At the end of the day this new government is a confused, directionless Hodge podge of Maoris, communists and tree huggers with a protectionist agenda that will take NZ back to the 1970s. This government is anti business and anti anyone who is proficient at making money. In fact, this government seems hell bent on taking money from the hard working rich and giving it to the lazy poor. Everything is backwards with this government and I imagine that they will probably start a new Ministry for “Feelings” and enforce vegetarianism on the general population.

    Thankfully, I can see the Prime Minister in waiting Bill English and the strong and stable National Party getting ready to take the reins as soon as this government implodes, which may even happen before Christmas.

    It is such a waste of talent having politicians like Paula Bennett and (future Prime Minister) Simon Bridges sitting in opposition. They have more talent and nous that Labour, Greens and NZ First put together. We need people like them to stand up for the marginalised hard workers of NZ, people like me who worked hard and invested to get ahead.

  17. silvertuatara says:

    While it was rather shambolic in parliament yesterday, it remains that the Labour lead government is in no way less empowered than the National government was for the previous nine years.

    Difficult and contentious policy was introduced under urgency by the National government to circumvent scrutiny, and by doing so National have normalised the practice which while National will complain if the new government follow National down that track. Ultimately when National complain over the use of strategy that they used during their tenure they will be seen for the hollow men and women that they are appearing to be portraying themselves as as the newly appointed opposition.

  18. cleangreen says:

    The new government need to send the best financial investigators into the “financial records of the last nine years to investigate all the corruptpractices the last national government had conducted including where was then money from all SOE sales gone to, and whosold the $100 million Dollars from the “Ontrack” rail agency that Helen Clarks Govenment placed in the rail maintainence agency in 2008 and national Government have closed ontract with no records of what hapend to that money.

    Also the $12 Milllion dollars given to a Saudi bussinessman and the detailed assessman of public funding that was put into the Lockinvar farms in Taupo that was hastily sold off to NZ/Chinese investors as
    that land was developed over more than 20yrs using opublic funds!!!!!

    So all these and other ‘Pamama papers’ shonkey deals need investigating as was the Rio tinco Aluminum Smelter ‘subsidies payments’, Warner Bros subsidies, and other bad deals the last National government freely gave money to without any publiclly available details.

    The new Labour coalition needs to make all information on National’s secrecy financial dealings to be made “transparent”to us the taxpayers of NZ.

  19. Gerri says:

    yeh… floundering around Schitt Creek without Paddles.