Tag Archive: Winston Peters

Haggling over the Kermadecs

NZ First leader Winston Peters has signalled to the Greens that he is willing to negotiate over the Kermadec Islands marine sanctuary. 

The Kermadec island sanctuary was originally proposed by the previous National government, but NZ First’s connections to the fishing industry put the proposal on ice when they entered a coalition with the Labour government.

Now though, it looks as if there’s hope for the sanctuary.

Although, it’s unlikely to be a full sanctuary. If this deal does come to life, NZ First’s connections to the fishing industry will make sure that there isn’t a 100% ban on fishing.

Restricted fishing does seem possible, though.

There are a couple of wild cards in play, however.

One is iwi rights. When National announced the sanctuary, there was concern from local iwi about their fishing rights.

While the Greens are of course environmentalist, they also have a history of supporting iwi rights, and giving iwi special fishing rights would probably be seen by Winston Peters as separatism, something NZ First are very strongly opposed to.

The other wild card is that National’s Nick Smith currently has a members bill in the ballot to progress the completion of the sanctuary, in it’s current form, without special rights for either iwi or the fishing industry.

If the Greens support that bill, it will pass no matter what NZ First and Labour think – naturally causing a headache for the whole government – probably part of National’s intention when they put the bill in.

At this point, it’s really hard to say what will happen.

We’ll just have to wait and see.

Where is NZ First?

One thing that I have noticed in my few months of blogging is that I’ve done very little on NZ First.

And part of the reason for that is that there hasn’t really been a lot of news out of them.

Excluding Shane Jones, who has been given both good and bad coverage by the media, there’s almost complete radio silence from NZ First.

Winston Peters, the man who chose to go with Labour, the man who dominated the media last year, has suddenly become a very quiet and meek Deputy Prime Minster.

Fellow cabinet minster Ron Mark’s only coverage was when Fletcher Tabuteau took the position of deputy leader from him.

And there’s been nothing from Tabuteau either, which is weird, as you would think that he’d be keen to show the country who he is.

And Tracey Martin hasn’t done anything to produce headlines either.

All of this is very strange when you consider that NZ First have been below 5% – meaning that there’s a strong chance that they might not be in parliament come 2020.

NZ First needs to start getting some good coverage of them soon, or this term in both government and parliament, will be their last.



Winston’s attack on English is just part of the problem

Claire Trevett at the Herald writes:

Winston Peters has ignored gracious farewells to Bill English, instead launching a withering attack on the departing National leader – and his caucus…

Asked if he had any kind words for English, Peters said: “I’ll leave those nice words to you.

“I don’t think he wants to know about sympathy or otherwise. He’s a big, grown, aged man, so to speak, and he’s always known how rough this game is because he’s been part of it, and [been] in fact inside coups, and sooner or later it will come to haunt you.

This highlights part of the wider problem with politics: We feel free to attack, offend, and belittle those who we disagree with.

Just because someone has different views than you doesn’t mean that you should attack them, call them names, or try to offend them in any way.

Politics is a polarising topic.

But that’s no excuse for being mean.

Matt King – Meet the Newbies

In episode ten of Meet the Newbies, I talk with Northland MP Matt King on changes to NZ’s bill of rights, why he prefers cannabis decriminalization over legalization, and his thoughts on when NZ will be ready for a republic.

COMING UP ON MONDAY: I talk with Northland based Labour list MP Willow-Jean Prime, on her former work as a Councillor in the far north.

Northland MP Matt King, who won the seat off NZ First leader Winston Peters