Monthly Archive: July 2018

National should go for the Auckland mayoralty

National has split down the middle over whether to stand a candidate against  Auckland mayor Phil Goff during next years mayoral elections.

Grassroots, everyday members seem to be mostly for it but the higher-ups aren’t so keen.

The grassroots members, of course, want a National mayor in the hot seat, but the higher-ups worry about the risk involved, lack of an obvious candidate, and the chance of infighting and the damaging of National’s brand that might come with a National mayor for Auckland, who could potentially disagree with the party leadership, causing serious problems.

Personally, I think National should challenge Labour and Phil Goff for the mayoralty.

Labour and Goff are in a weak spot at the moment. Goff has been no stranger to controversy during his time in the hot seat due to the amount of secrecy that Auckland council has seen, and was nearly turfed out by a motion of no confidence a few months back which saw nine out of the twenty councilors vote against him.

And a National mayor for Auckland would be detrimental to the Labour government, given that so much of their plans revolve around Auckland.

The fuel tax, light rail plan, and kwibuild are all plans that are centered upon Auckland, and that are only really feasible with a co-operative mayor.

So, all in all, I think National have nothing to lose and everything to gain by going for the Auckland mayoralty

We need a “right to be forgotten”

Good news. The 25-year-old privacy act is being looked at, and one of the things on the table is a “right to be forgotten:”

A “right to be forgotten” law basically says that if you ask a data holder like google or facebook to remove a post or an article on yourself, they will be legally obliged to do that.

Why is this needed?

Well, I’m a teen. Most of my friends are also teens.

Teens do stupid things.

And in this world, literally anything and everything gets posted online, to facebook, twitter, and Instagram.

Once something is online, it ain’t coming off.

Teens will do stupid things that make it online. Things that will haunt them. And not just teens. Everyday ordinary people, too.

People change. People don’t deserve to have the silly things they did in the past haunting them.

But currently, that’s how it works.

That is why we need a “right to be forgotten.”

Minor party shortage

No Right Turn recently blogged about TOP’s dissolution.

However, it’s the last line of his post which I find the most interesting:

But while its clear that TOP has died a natural death, it means we’ll be down to only 12 registered political parties (and only 5 in Parliament). Which isn’t a lot of options for voters to choose from. One way of measuring the health of a democracy is by the number of registered political parties. And on that metric, ours seems to be in slow decline.

Not including the five parties in parliament, the seven remaining ones are:

  • Maori
  • Legalise Cannabis
  • Conservatives
  • People’s Party
  • Democrats for Social Credit
  • Outdoors
  • Mana

Of those seven, the only party which holds a reasonable chance of actually getting into parliament come 2020 is the Maori party. What’s more, all three of our current minor parties are in danger of failing to be re-elected in 2020: NZ First and the Greens are hovering around the 5% mark, and National have refused to guarantee ACT that they will endorse them in Epsom.

This does leave me concerned that we will just have two parties in parliament in 2020, and if that happens, given there will be no coalitions with minor parties, the ruling party will have no power checks. That ain’t good. And even if they’re not in power, as NRT said, having minor parties is good for democracy.

Plug pulled on TOP

Gareth Morgan’s pet political party, TOP, has applied for de-registration.

It’s a sad ending. I know that myself, along with quite a few other voters from both ends of the political spectrum, quite liked TOP’s ideas.

The problem was though, the ideas were generally the only thing that people liked. Gareth Morgan kind of acted like a dick. It’s kind of hard to attract people to your party when you use the death of the PM’s cat as a political football.

However, given that the ideas that they were talking about were generally seen in a positive light, I did predict that there would be a future for TOP.

In fact, back in March, I blogged about how Lance O’Sullivan would have made a great leader for TOP, as back then there were reports of how they were in discussions for O’Sullivan to become TOP’s next leader.

I think that TOP could have made its way into parliament if they had O’Sullivan at the helm.

However, I’m guessing that four months later with no announcement means that no agreement was ever reached between them.

And thus ends the party which Morgan spent more than 2 million on.

Hopefully, for me as a football fan, Morgan will spend that kind of money on the Wellington Phoenix instead.

Not cool

So Green party co-leader Marama Davidson has received death threats on social media. 

This comes after Auckland City Council’s decision to refuse right-wingers Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux access to speak at council-owned venues, for fear of stirring up hate.

Davidson tweeted her support, and got death threats as a result.

I don’t agree with Davidson here. I think they should have a right to express their views, despite my personal distaste for them.

However, sending death threats is a) a dick move, b) really hurtful to the victim, and c) against the law.

I can’t believe I have to say this, but here it goes:

Don’t send people death threats.

Just don’t.

It’s really not that hard.

Let them voice their opinions

Far right Canadians Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux have been banned from speaking at venues owned by Auckland City Council during their trip to NZ.

Southern and Molyneux have controversial opinions on feminism, gender, and especially Islam.

The Islamic community unsurprisingly voiced their opposition.

Hazim Afra, president of the New Zealand Federation of Islam Associates, said the following:

“[She] abuses her right of freedom of speech. She’s just going to give a talk in which she’s just going to insult all of us,” Mr Arafeh said.

“I don’t think insulting Muslims comes under free speech, that’s an abuse of freedom of speech.

“I’m talking on behalf of 50,000 to 60,000 Muslims in New Zealand who are going to face a very hard time by all the comments she is going to make.”

I’m not going to lie: I find people like Southern and Molyneux racist and Islamophobic.

However, in the end, I also believe that they, just like everyone else, want a better society for everyone to live in.

And, we should let those who do not agree with us voice their views.

Southern and Molyneux should be allowed to speak at council venues.

 

A good decision by Air NZ

Air New Zealand has announced that they will be serving plant-based burgers on their Auckland-Los Angeles flights, a decision that has been criticized by Clutha-Southland MPs Hamish Walker and Mark Patterson.

For those that don’t know, a plant-based burger is where the meat is made out of beans, although apparently, it tastes exactly like normal meat.

Walker and Patterson’s reasoning for their views are that “Air NZ has forgotten the importance of the red meat’s sector’s contribution to our well being and economy.”

Personally, I think this is a great step forward for Air NZ. Meat-free meat is much better for the environment, and as air travel is already a huge contributor to global warming, I think every little bit helps here.

Second, it’s really Air NZ’s choice here. They should get to decide what goes on their menu. And third, if customers don’t like, it, I assure you that real meat will be back on the menu.

So yeah. I think that this was a good decision from Air NZ.

My political views

One thing I’ve always tried to do on this blog is to remain unbiased, simply offer analysis of the political situation.

Well, that ends today.

So, what are they?

I’m a socialist. Kind of. I think that rather than having capitalism with socialist elements, we should have socialism with capitalist elements.

With that said, I just want to make it clear that I have a lot of respect for those on the other side of the political divide. 

So, going a bit more in-depth on my views…

  • I think we should have more state-owned companies. This gives the government a source of revenue other than tax, meaning that when the public buys something from the state-owned company, the government gains money, meaning that we might be able to lower tax. It also gives us something to sell in times of financial hardship, but that shouldn’t be the government’s goal when investing in the private market
  • So, perhaps surprisingly, I’m not the biggest fan of tax, and would rather that government gain revenue via the method above. However, investing in the private sector is costly, and raising taxes, especially on the rich, is generally the safest method of gaining revenue.
  • Universal Healthcare is good, and I think New Zealand’s system of it is about the best it can be, although the healthcare sector needs more funding.
  • Ideally, there should be very little restrictions on welfare
  • I support the raising of the minimum wage as long as it’s proven this will not hurt the people it’s meant to protect. What I mean by that is that it’s possible that if the minimum wage is put too high, employers may be forced to fire the people who should be benefitting from that wage increase.
  • I’m a proud supporter of globalization and hope that one day the world will come together and unite into one singular country. I also think that Brexit was a terrible idea.
  • That said, in places like Catalonia, where minorities are being suppressed, I think independence is the best short-term solution.
  • Democracy is good.
  • Fees-free tertiary education is good.
  • Environment before economy.

That’s basically the core of what I believe. So, with that out of the way, from now on, while I will try to continue my unbiased analysis, I will also try to add my own opinions as well.

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