- Martin Wright The problem with that argument is that we are already completely independent. Have been since 1926. So a flag change is overdue. The real problem is that the government has cocked up this process so better to vote no change now and do it properly in five years time..
- Angela Dwyer if NZ was completely independent , it would not have the British Queen as a Head of State nor an unelected Governor General capable of bringing down a goverment and responsible for appointing judges. https://en.wikipedia.org/.../Governor-General_of_New_Zealand
- Martin Wright Perhaps I should have said we are already completely independent "for all intents and purposes". I had a look at Angela's link to wikipedia and I am encouraged by the following statement therein:
"In practice, political power is exercised by the Parliament of New Zealand (which is composed of the Governor-General in Parliament, and the House of Representatives), through the Prime Minister and Cabinet. By constitutional convention, the Governor-General exercises his or her powers solely on the advice of the Prime Minister and ministers - the only exception being when the Prime Minister loses the confidence of parliament."
I'm in favour of becoming a republic, but doing so is symbolic, not a rectification of any palpable problem. So, given the lack of a problem with being a realm (not a republic) it may take an awfully long time, if ever, to actually become a republic.
- Nandor Tanczos Martin Wright I disagree that it is just symbolic. The notion that sovereignty is centred on the Queen, rather than the people, restricts a number of political possibilities - including the full recognition of the Treaty of Waitangi and its assertion of Maori self determination.
- Martin Wright I can't follow your logic here. To my understanding, the NZ Government is obliged to implement the Treaty whether we are a republic or a realm. Nothing changes by becoming a republic. Hence my comment that to become a republic - while I do support that - does not give us anything more than what we currently have. After all, we did adopt MMP without consultation with the Crown, and if (sniff) Kiwis voted for a new flag, that would occur without any interference from the Crown. Am I right?
- Nandor Tanczos Martin, being obliged to do something and actually doing it (or even being capable of doing it) are not the same thing. To implement the Treaty would require a constitutional change that recognises the sovereignty / self determination of Maori. A monarchy (being a unitary state) is incapable to doing that since it sees sovereignty as deriving from the monarch. It can delegate powers to Maori but cannot recognise their inherent sovereignty, That is why our Government invented the 'principles of the Treaty' as a way of sidestepping the issue.
IMO becoming a republic is a necessary, although not sufficient, condition for implementing the Treaty. It would also require a move to a more federal or even confederal system.
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- Nathan Pohio Not a popular proposition for Maori as a shift away, in any direction is perceived as an end to Tirity o Waitangi and so the protection according to it. And too many generations have fought to hard and too long post1840 to abandon what has been achieved, particularly in the past 20 years.
- Wells Tao yeah I had an interesting to me convo with Nandor Tanczos about this issue http://taowells.blogspot.co.nz/.../the-fundamental...
- Wells Tao And since then I learned that there is this tricky thing called "The Constitution Act 1986 and a collection of statutes (Acts of Parliament), the Treaty of Waitangi, Orders in Council, letters patent, decisions of the Courts and unwritten constitutional conventions, comprises only a portion of the uncodified constitution of New Zealand." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_New_Zealand
- Nandor Tanczos majority support for the status quo. I am of the opinion that a move to a republic would not alter the status of the Treaty - after all it is Maori determination that put it back on the agenda after decades of Crown attempts to bury it. If the British monarchy was any protection for it, it never would have been treated as a "simple nullity" or the Privy Council (in the Te Heu Heu decision) say that it is unenforceable in the courts unless enacted in legislation.
- Wells Tao "after all it is Maori determination that put it back on the agenda after decades of Crown attempts to bury it" - yes that is the point. Maybe the fear is tied to losing what ever inroads that have been made under the crown? As there is some confusing debate about which would be a fairer court, crown or republic. No?
- Nandor Tanczos Yes, and I understand that. When the dice get thrown, who knows how they will land?
I think it is inevitable that we will become a republic sooner or later. I understand if tangata whenua would like to be in a stronger position before that happens (demographically and politically) and I think it is critical that Maori participate in the discussion, so that our new constitution, when it comes, properly reflects them.
- Nandor Tanczos I don't think that was their constitution that did that Wells.
Personally I think a move towards a more decentralised notion of power would be very helpful for us all. Recognising some kind of inherent jurisdiction for tangata whenua, for example. Also for local decision-making more generally. Currently local government is a creature of the Local Government Act, so councils can be amalgamated or dissolved by Central Government, regardless of local opinion. That seems wrong to me.