Haka political theatre in Parliament – Winners & Losers


Last weeks Haka political theatre in Parliament had a number of political winners and losers.


Māori Party – They had to walk out! Watching their aspirations of co-governance spoken about in such insulting language demanded a response and their Haka provided that powerful political theatre. For a younger Māori demographic who are radical in their self love and pride in being Māori, the disrespect National are showing by framing the He Puapua report as segregation means the Māori Party are going to be walking out more than they stay in the chamber.

National PartyWhile it is outrageous and hypocritical in the extreme for National to be race baiting in this manner, they have every right as the Loyal Opposition to frame their criticism and questions of the Government anyway they see fit.   Judith can play the, ‘I don’t agree with what you say but I will defend your right to say it’ card. This smear that co-governance is segregation and that He Puapua amounts to a secret attempt to take over NZ borders n Qanon lunacy, but it will play well for older men who refer to the Prime Minister as ‘Cindy’. This is a war on the Right, and it’s about National pulling back some of the reactionary angry vote ACT picked up – the centre that voted Labour don’t see the Māori Health Authority as a secret coup.

Kelvin Davis – Gave the best speech of his political life in response to National’s smears. If there was a day for Kelvin to stand up, that was the day…

“Judith Collins dove headfirst into the politics of division and, in doing so, she tried to rewrite history, Te Tiriti o Waitangi. You see, Judith Collins is opposed to partnership with Māori on our terms. She’s opposed to Māori asserting their rangatiratanga in health. She’s opposed to Māori asserting their rangatiratanga for Māori to come up with solutions to care for our most vulnerable children.”

As Minister for Māori-Crown Relations, Davis said the solution is “walking across the bridge that is Te Tiriti o Waitangi from the non-Māori world into the Māori world”.

…managed to make up for his poetry.


Voters and Political Debate – This isn’t a true debate about the role of co-governance and the future of the Treaty. National are being disingenuous in the extreme by pretending to want a debate while promising to kill off all Māori political aspirations if they win the 2023 election. Our democracy and quality of civic debate is mutilated by the tactics National are stooping to.

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ACT – National are trying to bring Don Brash’s Orewa Speech back from the dead to stop ACT cannibalising their vote and because David Seymour philosophically hates naked racism, he can’t join in with Judith’s cross burning jamboree and is left bitching about school lunches.



Personally, I think this race-baiting hypocrisy by National is a doomed strategy.

In 2023, for the first time ever, Millennials + Gen Xers will be a larger voting block than Boomers. Part of National’s terrible 2020 election result was due to this changing demographics . Some Boomers get very, very, very angry about Māori political aspirations but the next couple of generations know their history better and understand the injustice of the past.

Being angry at Māori is a bit like denying climate change, it only effects old people and increasingly they don’t have dominance at the ballot box.

The next generation are not as frightened and reactionary of co-governance with Māori which leaves National fishing for votes in an ever decreasing puddle.


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  1. Ha ! I’ve been a critic of Rawiri Waititi in the past what with his Texas long Horn hat but the defiant Haka was priceless stuff. And that brilliant, pink jacket.
    Is that seymour looking shell shocked?
    My hat, not as flash as Waititi’s certainly, comes off to Rawiri Waititi.

  2. No ones the winner. And one could argue as offence is taken at everything and anything on one side, hateful overreaction is bound to come out from the other as did the point blank ugly biggoted comments from the owner of Eagle Breweries, a day or so back.

    People are over the blame, the manipulation and most of all the vitriolic bullshit, all round.

    The race card is a form of Godwins law, “That is, if a discussion (regardless of topic or scope) goes on long enough, sooner or later someone will compare someone or something to Adolf Hitler or his deeds, the point at which usually dampens discussion”. Or in this case, someone/something is colonisation/racist/the Maori Party go home. Set our watches to that certainty.

    We have a crippling housing crisis creating mahem for ALL races but what do we get? National telling us civilisation is under the greatest threat since the bubonic plague because of Labour’s hidden sizeable and argueably controversial constitutional planning and someone within Labour worried enough to leak the whole game plan to National. All of which is resulting in enough political theatre to fertilise the Sinai desert. That helps nothing and no one.

    The manipulation on both sides is nothing but divisive and I’d argue people are just over it.

  3. Interesting point of view.
    Consider tho.
    For many generations the young have been radical “socialist” thinkers.
    This fits your Genx Millenial scenario

    As they age and are exposed to the “real”world.
    They become more conservative.

    Think boomers and the Vietnam war.
    Goff spitting at returning soldiers.
    Now an extreme conservative?

    So it will be interesting as to how the newer generations will react as they see themselves “demoted” in favour of a minority.

    Just saying.

    • That has been the standard response to the facts of demographic change – ‘oh you get more conservative as you get older’ but that conservative nature is driven by getting wealthier – Gen X were the first user pays generation they haven’t generated wealth like boomers were able – the lack of security will make those generations radical not conservative

      • Neither viewpoint completely does justice to the situation. Millenials and Z are very woke because of the head-job done on them by our increasingly woke education system, but they’re not especially left-wing economically. For example, very few of my millenial colleagues are in the union. “Progressive neoliberals” would be a better description of them.

        On the other hand, it’s facile to attribute the conservative drift of any older folks solely to “getting wealthier”. There’s of course some truth in it, but as often as not the age-related drift is more a question of getting mugged by reality. As people grow older they accumulate enough life experience to ditch simplistic utopian notions (“Imagine, there’s no countries …”). We’re less inclined to believe in imaginary genders, and more inclined to see red flags in a plan to hand over power to unelected tribal elites.

        And lack of economic security may well radicalize the younger generations, but some of them may not be the kind of radicals that you have in mind, Martyn.

  4. In my opinion Martyn the philosophical arguments here will come second to the practical and political ones. I’m white and right but aren’t anxious about any proposed co Governance on a philosophical level. My problem is the appalling record this government has to initiate anything successfully at any level in a timely and well organised way. For those who say we must try it, there will be just as many that will say it will be just another hair brained expensive scheme destined for failure. Can we afford this proposed system. As we can’t afford the one system we already have what makes us confident we can add another with all the bloated administration that goes along with it. The other problem is where do you draw the line with this. A no nothing tickle up of a few Government departments in an effort to do as little as possible or a full noise parallel system of co Governance at every level. Once this pandora’s box is opened it can never be shut. When we look at health and housing every Government has failed in the last 70 years. If between them they had spent the right money on social, racial and economically balanced programs we would only need one good system. There has never been enough money for one and there will be even less for two because of needless replication in some areas. I don’t see too many winners, but we all could be losers. Double our health budget in a socially acceptable way and a lot of these issues would go away. It would also be way cheaper.

  5. Its politics 101….
    The irony/hypocrisy of him stating that National were playing to their voter base, and has been doing the exact same since he entered parliament.
    Lets not pretend here that the 2 maori MPs are (and have been from day 1) not playing to their voting base and by being thrown out of parliament debating chanber and labelling almost ALL debates/speeches as ‘racist’ is them just trying to garner more votes…nothing more nothing less.
    The more they get on TV by acting like spoilt kids in the sandbox, the more they can pretend the big bad whitie government are against Maori and throw them out of the sand pit when its their turn to speak/give their side of things.

    • Some might, but a lot will see potential inheritances eaten up by reverse mortgages, means testing of support, gouging by retirement villages & an end of life “can’t take it with you” final fling for Boomers.

  6. We saw two different ways on how to approach the debate in parliament. One was to perform a Haka and storm out, the other was to engage in the debate and be understood by a wider audience. Maybe the actions of the Maori Party will resonate among their constituents and Green Party MPs, but is the continual theatre going to play out in a productive way for the Maori Party within parliament? It seems unlikely their current MPs are ever going to be seen as palatable partners for either Labour or National. Perhaps sitting in opposition is more fun anyway.

  7. Its too simplistic to argue on a young-old divide. The demographics people seem to ignore (outside of Maori/PI) is that of race. Immigration not age is the most interesting demographic into the next 20 years and importantly the asian and indian demographics. Neither cultures are appreciative of woke as a general rule.

  8. I watched Kelvin Davis give his speech too.
    Couldn’t believe he was the same person that was Deputy to JA for the first term.
    He was a revelation.
    More – much more – of this, please Kelvin!

  9. There is plenty of theatre but where is the substance . The reason and direction that Sharples and TurIa brought to the role gained many pluses for the Maori people with a dignity missing at the moment

    • Sorry Trev, just to confirm what were the pluses they brought again?

      I only saw Turia as a bitter twisted former Labour politician.

  10. I agree they had to walk out. Randomly watching news clips I witnessed Ngarewa-Packer being misogynistically patronised by the most smarmy, conceited non-reply from the speaker. ’tis little wonder Maori are getting angry, he wouldn’t answer the question, none of them will because what use is a treaty when such weasel words succeed it?

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