The Dim-Post

May 1, 2013

Publishable, but worth it?

Filed under: Politics — danylmc @ 8:38 am

I thought Maurice Williamson’s speech in favor of Marriage Equality was pretty funny, but I also think that it’s spring-boarded him forwards as the ACT-National cabal’s primary candidate for the Auckland mayoralty is an indication that there are no viable right-wing candidates for the Auckland mayoralty.

Being a good speaker counts for a lot in politics, but I don’t think it’s going to convince Auckland to vote for a libertarian who thinks that the leaky homes debacle was an act of nature and who will want to privitise every park and swimming pool in the city.

The related theory doing the rounds is that Williamson will have a chance because John Minto will ‘split the left-wing vote’. Yes, that would be the same John Minto that stood in Manukau East during the 2011 General election and won 461 votes to Labour MP Ross Robertson’s 19,399.

18 Comments »

  1. I doubt he will stand, simply a case of enjoying the spotlight.
    There will be no credible centre candidate to stand against Loony Len. He has a lock on that job for at least one more term. With the comms juggernaut and the rates rip off he has locked in the poorer suburbs.
    I expect a North Shore resistance Army to be formed any day now.🙂 With water and rates we are getting squeezed very hard.

    Comment by Barnsley Bill — May 1, 2013 @ 8:53 am

  2. If Williamson runs, won’t the Colin Craig/Brian Tamaki/Graham Capill tendency also put up a candidate and split the vote.

    Anyway RAM, who are/were more left wing than Minto, being basically the SWP, got over 100,000 votes in the 2007 local elections.

    Comment by richdrich — May 1, 2013 @ 8:55 am

  3. “Being a good speaker counts for a lot in politics, but I don’t think it’s going to convince Auckland to vote for a libertarian who thinks that the leaky homes debacle was an act of nature and who will want to privitise every park and swimming pool in the city.”

    But then Len has a plan to cover those areas in high rise buildings anyway. Damned if you do..

    JC

    Comment by JC — May 1, 2013 @ 10:48 am

  4. Looking forward to Colin Craig throwing his support behind Len Brown…

    Comment by Me Too — May 1, 2013 @ 10:56 am

  5. “Yes, that would be the same John Minto that stood in Manukau East during the 2011 General election and won 461 votes to Labour MP Ross Robertson’s 19,399.”

    To be fair to john, folk joke vote in local elections. Just look at how they first chose Ken Livingstone, then Boris Johnson, in London.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — May 1, 2013 @ 2:00 pm

  6. Meh. The liberal-right have their mayor, Len Brown. Len’s adherence to Roger Douglas’ free market capitalism is rock solid, just like David Shearer’s. Len is now pushing PPPs, which Clark/Cullen also pushed; because, y’know, PPPs have been such a great cheap source of funds for public works overseas, (called PFIs in Tory Blair’s Britain).

    @ Barnsley – aaah, the poorer suburbs. Curse us. You do know Len took Manukau’s free swimming pools funds and gave it to the rest of Auckland so the under 17s across the region could have free pool use? Nice for Auckland’s youth, but at the direct cost to Manukau adults, who now pay twice (at the door, and by rates).

    Could we also mention you are paying for the $170m in Auckland Transition Authority quango costs, foisted on us by ACT & National? Oh, and that North Shore Council had run up eye-watering debt levels (was it $250m)? Whereas the 3 southern legacy councils brought net assets to the party? But it’s not such a sexy right-wing meme to say you Shore & Herne Bay folks are being subsidised by south Auckland, is it Barnsley? Sheesh.

    Comment by bob — May 1, 2013 @ 2:51 pm

  7. eye-watering debt levels (was it $250m)?

    Eye-watering. That’s like a $50,000 mortgage on a million dollar house, when you earn over $100k a year.

    Comment by richdrich — May 1, 2013 @ 3:17 pm

  8. “because, y’know, PPPs have been such a great cheap source of funds for public works overseas, (called PFIs in Tory Blair’s Britain).”

    Yeah, it’s funny how NZ still steals 10-year brit old ideas, just as they are getting discredited in their home country…

    Comment by Clunking Fist — May 1, 2013 @ 3:33 pm

  9. Bringing all your insight, eh Richdrich? First, you pay North Shore’s debt if a few hundred million are so trivial to you. Second, the point was to contrast Barnsley’s dig at ‘poorer suburbs’ being carried by North Shore, when reality is kinda different, as net debt levels of the legacy councils showed.

    @ Clunking Fist – yeh, I guess Len is getting desperate since National keep vetoing any funding option he puts up for his train tunnel… Does make you wonder about National’s contempt for democracy at council level. Anything they don’t like, they veto. Why have elections?

    Comment by bob — May 1, 2013 @ 5:20 pm

  10. “Why have elections” true, but I think these big plans should be supported by referenda: who knows why folk voted for Len? What voter felt comfortable that they knew what the cost impact would be on them/their rates, when they voted for Len and his ideas? Still, at least one day we will be dead and won’t have to worry about this shit anymore, eh?

    Comment by Clunking Fist — May 1, 2013 @ 5:54 pm

  11. Big plans supported by referenda ouside of an election. Indeed, who knows why people voted how they did! Hmmmm, where have I heard that idea before.

    Comment by Gregor W — May 1, 2013 @ 9:09 pm

  12. Well, I voted Nats because I slightly preferred their flavour compared with, say, Lab. But I sure as shit wasn’t happy about (for e.g.) RWC2011 funding. I don’t agree that our politicians should be elected dictators for 3 years. It would be easy for me to not vote: I hate the bene bashing of the Nats, but I hate the business basing of Lab slightly more.

    “Hmmmm, where have I heard that idea before.” But I can’t afford to cast my vote on just one issue, though!🙂

    Comment by Clunking Fist — May 2, 2013 @ 12:09 pm

  13. @ Clunking Fist – yep, democracy is in a shakey state in NZ right now! (no pun intended) I never thought of referenda for council issues, but we do have a council election this year, so easy to tag it onto that. Referenda should have thresholds to be held (an issue over a certain capex or opex say).

    Gregor – aren’t you concerned about the number of times central and local politicians ignore a majority or significant minority of voters? Like CF said – we don’t want 3 yr elected dictatorships; we want politicians on a choker leash!

    There has to be some way of addressing public subtleties of opinion. For example, I support public transport, but not the City Rail Tunnel (which is unnecessary). Referenda are better than nothing…

    Comment by bob — May 2, 2013 @ 12:29 pm

  14. Bob, ALL councils brought debt and assets with them to the merger. Comparing gross debt to a net position ain’t useful. Also if you have a source it might help your case.

    When it comes to waste water, the shore came into the SC with a future proofed system while the west and city are creaking at the seams. The council is planning on spending billions on this in the next couple of decades. And they are eyeing up Rosesale WWTP to treat West Aucklands waste water.

    It would also be interesting to know how much extra the city is going to pull in from the NS once the transitional rates are sorted. Everyone I know on the shore had rates increases of 10-30% as a result of the transition.

    Comment by Swan — May 4, 2013 @ 8:09 am

  15. The Govt haven’t vetoed the CRL. Len is perfectly entitled to pay for his own promises with his own funding source: rates.

    Comment by Swan — May 4, 2013 @ 8:30 am

  16. aren’t you concerned about the number of times central and local politicians ignore a majority or significant minority of voters?

    Indeed I am. My point being the same logic can be applied to the MOM referendum which so many pooh-poohed as a waste of taxpayer money.

    Comment by Gregor W — May 4, 2013 @ 11:56 am

  17. Indeed.

    Comment by Clunking Fist — May 4, 2013 @ 5:54 pm

  18. @ Swan – tell me about it. Manukau came in with the newest infrastructure, and is already being turned down for capex funds, because the most run-down legacy council areas need to be brought up to a similar standard as the better built & maintained legacy council areas, like the south.

    And everyone seems to be getting stiffed by higher rates. Water rates doubled in Manukau, because they had the cheapest water bills before (which begs the question why ACC water bills were so high, given the water source was the same!). Isn’t the ACT-National supercity wonderful?

    I’m basically at the point where I think we should just charge rates based on land area, not capital value or the old system of land value, both of which allow too much variation in rates between adjacent properties. Too many people think they are getting stiffed, when in fact they are getting subsidised on their rates/expenditure in their area… If we want progressive rates, we could weight the land area rates charge by the decile rating of each Local Board. Otara is decile 1, Remuera decile 10, say. Then rates would be easily comparable, and the debate would be fact-based, and not random anecdotes.

    Also, govt has vetoed the CRL. Govt takes tax to spend on NZers, and Akld has 1/3 of all Zers. If govt says they won’t fund major Akld projects, they are vetoing that project (even if it’s a project I don’t want). Govt funds Wgtn rail and motorways, but won’t spend on Akld because it is a Labour dominated council. Pathetic.

    @ Gregor – yes, the state assets referendum is good, as was the S59 vote. If over 300,000 Kiwis want their voice heard against what the MPs are saying, then it is a safe bet most Kiwis want their voice heard on that issue, and MPs should listen, not ignore them. Sadly, most MPs follow Edmund Burke 3yr elected dictatorship model, which is why I want greater choker leashes for MPs😉

    Comment by bob — May 5, 2013 @ 2:27 pm


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