Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Political Manipulation

What a sad state NZ politics is in!

Not so much that it isn't all that great but more of one where political parties are able to manipulate the system to ensure that their potential allies and friend get voted into parliament.

We have a system where a political party can choose not to contest and electorate seat and thereby giving a preferred ally the chance of being elected. Once elected they can bring in more representatives using the party vote.

We have the Mana Party led by ex Maori Party member Hone Harawira and the Maori Party considering whether or not to run a candidate against him. Hone is keen for them not to as this would give him a certain pathway into parliament and hence a party leaders salary instead of that of a mere MP.

Likewise we have National deciding not to run a candidate in Epsom against John Banks who is leading the charge for the Act Party. This gives John Banks the best chance of being elected and therefore an ally for National after the election.

This means that the electorate do not get a chance to vote for a candidate from the party they support and in effect deprives the electorate of choice.

The system needs to be changed so that if you are a political party then you must stand a candidate in every electorate or you are not allowed to be a political party. This would get rid of those fringe elements who cannot get enough interest throughout the whole country to stand candidates.

The alternative for these small factions is to run as individual MP's, independent's.

The next major problem in NZ is the list MP. MMP has produced a system where the make up of parliament is made up to represent the total vote proportionally. Good you might think and in some ways it is. But once again the system has been set up with huge holes to allow those piggies with their snouts in the trough to remain there.

How you may ask? Well the problem is that those who stand for parliament in an electorate and put their name on the line can also be placed on the party list so that if they fail at the election, ie the people vote against them and they lose they can get into parliament through the back door, sneak in off the party list. The more influential you are in the political party the higher you tend to rank on the party list almost guaranteeing you a seat in parliament.

The system needs to be changed so that you can be a party list MP or an electorate MP but cannot have a foot in both camps. The down side of that is that for the major parties almost all of the cabinet would come from the list, so that makes way for another rule.

This is the one that should be implemented. You can not be on the party list and also run as a candidate in an electorate and that the cabinet and ministerial roles can only be filled by electorate MP's.

That way we would have proportionality and also be represented by those people who had actually won electorate seats.

No getting into ministerial and high ranking positions without the express vote of the people.

I urge NZ voters to either change the system at this years referendum.

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