Rino Tirikatene

Labour’s ties to Ratana are questioned as well they should

Labour treats Maori with condescending and patronising behaviour.

They ‘expect’ support from Maori, in fact probably demand it behind closed doors, but the reality is after 90 years of association with Ratana the elders are finally getting the picture that more results for Maori have been delivered by the National party and their partnership with the Maori party.Labour is being put on notice again but anyone who has been observing politics as long as I have knows this has been going one for quite some time.

Maori it seems are content to talk lots but do little when it comes sorting out politicians.

At Ratana though Andrew Little got his beans, and it was particularly sharp in his mind after the elders changed the protocol for attending the marae, putting all politicians on the same level.

Only one got upset and that was Andrew Little.

Andrea Vance reports:

Ratana church leaders have warned Labour not to take its support for granted, after the party won six of the seven Maori seats at the election.

In a break from tradition, Labour leader Andrew Little and his MPs were obliged to walk onto the marae with politicians from other parties.

Events to mark the 142nd birthday of the prophet Tahup?tiki Wiremu R?tana ran well over time, because of the attendance of the Maori King T?heitia Paki. But it’s known that church elders have long wanted MPs of all hues to be welcomed together. ?? Read more »

Robbo continues to show Labour’s condescension toward voters

Are Labour really about to take notice of what the voters are telling them, an historic moment if it’s anything more than lip service.

David Parker the media’s favourite policy wonk who has been awarded plaudits for developing policy and the details behind it…..well not really has been thrown under the bus.

Labour’s manifesto is in tatters as without the inflated forecast revenue from the CGT and the savings in pension there is no cash to fund any other policies, except of course that old favorite of cracking down on tax dodgers.

You do have to wonder what on earth Labour have been doing for their taxpayer funds considering the CGT, pension age, minimum wage have been policy for four years and only now are they noticing that the public think Parker and Labour are idiots.

Who knows maybe even the groupthink the MSM might one day notice their audience don’t like these policies either and start questioning them properly.

Grant Robertson has made his pitch for the party leadership, signalling a crackdown on banks, supermarkets and power companies and a plan to rebuild the party.

As he moved to counter the momentum building behind former party president Andrew Little?s bid, Robertson formally filed his nomination yesterday, signed symbolically by Maori MP Rino Tirikatene and Mana MP Kris Faafoi.

He is expected to launch his campaign in Auckland next week aiming to reverse the 2011 leadership launches where David Cunliffe overshadowed him.

As rumours swirled in the party that Cunliffe may withdraw, given Little?s hit on his union base, Robertson yesterday promised ??a three-year programme to rebuild and reconnect the Labour Party as the driving force for progressive change??. ? Read more »

They might have Cunliffe’s blessing but did they follow the rules

David Cunliffe says he gave the two renegades his blessing for crossing the floor.

Two Labour MPs crossed the floor yesterday to vote in support of a bill allowing the recovery of native timber felled in a cyclone.

Parliament went into urgency to pass the West Coast Windblown Timber Bill through all its stages.

Labour opposed the legislation after its bid to have it heard by a select committee was rejected by National. However, South Island MPs Damien O’Connor and Rino Tirikatene broke ranks to back the new law.

Leader David Cunliffe gave them his blessing. “Damien and Rino are acting as local MPs and as such the Labour caucus and I support them,” he said.

O’Connor, the West Coast Tasman MP, asked the Government to amend the bill to ensure locals would get preferential access and the major benefits of the extraction of windblown trees.

“While I am disappointed Conservation Minister Nick Smith will not amend the legislation to guarantee West Coasters get much-needed jobs and revenue, I still believe this timber should be utilised,” he said.

I’m told that the “blessing” was really rather something else indeed after a massive fight erupted in caucus on Tuesday.? Read more »

Same problem here for Labour

Labour in the UK is in dreadful trouble with a lacklustre?leader who is highly rated, by himself mostly.

Last Friday, Ed Miliband?s team assembled to review the previous day?s launch of the ?Condition of Britain? report from the IPPR think tank, which Miliband had enthusiastically embraced. The morning papers were dominated by England?s World Cup defeat at the hands of Uruguay, but what coverage there was gave the Labour leader?s aides cause for concern. ?No one?s out there backing us up,? observed one of his press advisers sombrely.

Although the speech had been heavily trailed in advance, the rest of the shadow cabinet were conspicuous by their absence. With the exception of Rachel Reeves, who holds the welfare brief, few of Miliband?s colleagues appeared keen publicly to endorse his tough new line on benefits.

?Well, what did they expect,? one bemused shadow cabinet member told me. ?He?s spent the past four years telling everyone: ‘I?m going to stand up to the Tories on welfare.? Then he suddenly says: ‘Actually, you know what, I?m not.? And he expects everyone to come running??

As Ed Miliband is painfully aware, no one is planning to do so. Which is why his office had to spend the rest of Friday ringing round, drumming up support for their beleaguered boss in the weekend papers. Reeves, Chuka Umunna and Tristram Hunt duly emerged to issue supportive statements, along with Neil Kinnock, who was ? bizarrely ? sent out to rebut the charge that Miliband was turning into? Neil Kinnock.

One person who did not issue a supportive statement, of course, was the shadow chancellor, Ed Balls. Indeed, over the past few weeks, rumours have started to circulate in the corridors of Westminster that Balls is ?on manoeuvres?. ?He?s up to something,? MPs have been whispering to one another, in conspiratorial tones.

Read more »

Cunliffe has lost control of his caucus, O’Connor and Tirikatene to cross the floor [UPDATED]

David Cunliffe’s parlous poll ratings for the party have seen the first MPs to buck the whip and cross the floor to vote in favour of the?West Coast Windblown Timber Bill.

When your party polls so low the sitting MPs retrench back to their electorates and that is what you are seeing here as Damien O’Connor knows Labour’s opposition to this is death for his own electoral chances.

Labour?s MP for West Coast Tasman Damien O?Connor and Labour?s MP for Te Tai Tonga Rino Tirikatene will vote for the West Coast Windblown Timber Bill in their capacities as local MPs.

Damien O?Connor says: “While I am disappointed Conservation Minister Nick Smith will not amend the legislation to guarantee West Coasters get much needed jobs and revenue, I still believe this timber should be utilised.

“The West Coast lost almost 1000 well-paid jobs after the National Government ran Solid Energy into the ground by forcing it to increase debt and pay out dividends at a time when coal prices were unsustainably high. This almost crippled the company and the West Coast community along with it.? Read more »

Why does Labour break the law?

via the tipline

I think Parliamentary Services and the Electoral Commission ned to look into this. There is growing evidence that in this by-election but also in the local body elections that Labour is using considerable parliamentary resources in order to campaign on behalf of candidates.

I think someone local is going to need to lay a complaint about the unauthorised advertisements. Of course getting the Police to prosecute is another matter entirely…they still haven’t done anything about the outstanding complaints from the last election.

This photo was taken in the window Rino Tirikatene and Lianne?Dalziel’s Electorate office this afternoon of Poto William’s Billboard?for the by-election in Christchurch East.? Read more »

Unions besides themselves over Simon Bridges

Today starts the long convoluted select committee process over Simon Bridges? Employment Relations Amendment Bill. The unions hate it with a passion and believe that the sky?s about to fall in and it?s some cunning plot to have the rich elite take over the world ? all thanks to the Nats.

Chairing the Committee is Hamilton East MP David Bennett. This is his big chance to show he?s not afraid of the unions, and to not allow committee proceedings to be captured by whinging corrupt unions like the?EPMU?and?SFWU.

In fact, this gives him and the other Nat MPs Mike Sabin, Chris Auchinvole, Cam Calder and Simon O?Connor a good opportunity to ask questions to the unions about how they?re ripping off their members.

Along with the EPMU and SFWU it is likely they will be prsented with a submission from?The Maritime Union’s Gary Parlsoe who has also flown in to have a massive whinge about facilitation, seems he was happy to tell the Koru lounge this morning in a rather loud voice that he isn’t happy with the facilitator. He also spoke briefly with a EPMU bloke who he roundly criticised to his mates after her left, things could get tense between the unions at the select committee.? Read more »

Long Term Effects of the Tizard Timebomb

The Herald editorial talks about the paucity of talent in Labour’s list:

The Labour Party has 43 seats in the present Parliament. If it wins at least that many at this year’s election it will bring in eight new names from the list it published on Sunday: Andrew Little, Deborah Mahuta-Coyle, Michael Wood, Kate Sutton, Jerome Mika, Josie Pagani, Lynette Stewart and Jordan Carter. If the party maintains its improvement in the latest poll – suggesting pressure on its leader over his handling of Darren Hughes has done Phil Goff and his party no harm – Labour can look forward to many more than 43 MPs.

The names Christine Rose, Glenda Alexander, Susan Zhu, Rino Tirikatene, Sehai Orgad and Megan Woods could be in the House too. There are not many pale males among all those names. Party lists are intended to bring a better gender balance and more ethnic diversity into democratic representation. Labour’s makes a meal of it.

It has also learned from recent experience not to put old names low on its list where they could be next in line to replace any list MP who fails to serve a full term. There are no Judith Tizards in a position to return at the expense of fresh talent this time.

They also note the long term effects of the T-Bomb. There doesn’t appear to be any Tizards lurking down?the?list?to embarrass them after the election.

But the downside of that lesson is that there are no new names high on the list. With few exceptions, sitting MPs occupy all the places down to number 35. Most of them are also standing in electorates, which means that if any are rejected by the voters they will return on the list. The real winners of any party’s list selection, in the public eye at least, are probably electorate MPs who want no place on it.

They go on to?commend?Lianne Dalziel as I have for her?decision?to abandon being ont eh List. She knows better than most that scum list MPs are hated.

The list system remains an unsatisfactory element of MMP to members and voters alike. The lists are drawn up by party panels out of the public eye. Electorate candidates are selected in similar secrecy, but at least those selected have to pass muster at public election meetings and voters have put a tick beside their names.

The?list?system is the single worst aspect about MMP and one of the reasons why it should be chucked aside.