“Democracy is about choice”

One of the stupidest criticisms of Bill English’s decision not to stand a National candidate in the My Albert by-election is that it is undemocratic.

I’ve seen that said in social media, but nonsense is to be expected there.

But veteran journalist Barry Soper also spins that line in Mt Albert byelection waste of money

It’s hard to envisage John Key chucking in the towel in the way English has done on this one. Democracy is about choice and the people of Mt Albert are now being denied it.

Yes, democracy is about choice, and choosing not to stand a candidate is just as valid as choosing to stand a candidate.

Greens chose not to stand a candidate in the Northland by-election last year, and while Labour chose to stand a candidate they also chose to not campaign for votes for her to help Winston Peters win.

Greens chose not to stand a candidate in last month’s Mt Roskill by-election to help Labour’s Michael Wood. NZ First chose not to stand a candidate (I don’t know why).

National choose not to stand candidates in Maori electorates and I haven’t seen Soper condemn them for that.

Democracy is about choice, and an important choice for parties is whether to stand candidates or not.

Leave a comment


  1. Zedd

     /  20th December 2016

    said.. I remember when we used to sit.. in the Govt yards in Aotearoa.. observing the hypocrites.. as the mingle with the Good people we’d meet.

    many a TRUE word, spoken in jest.. 😀

  2. Blazer

     /  20th December 2016

    once again with feeling…..’Labour did it….TOO…’!

  3. Meh. Barry doesn’t feel right without ranting about something… me I would have run a token campaign – made Labour spend till it hurt…

    • Blazer

       /  20th December 2016

      Barry is like most msm journos,pro govt,they fear getting the ..sack.That is the reality around the world.Murdoch became a media Czar by cultivating the elite and unfortunately his m.o has contaminated the …global MSM.Social media is challenging the propaganda of MSM,so that threat is being countered by invasive ‘laws’ to control the internet .The battle for the ‘hearts and minds ‘ of the ‘people’ used to be ..easy,but now requires a construct of ‘terror’ to justify the erosion of privacy and constitutional freedom.

  4. patupaiarehe

     /  20th December 2016

    NZF need to pull their finger out of their backside here. Last election, the party vote was ‘Right’, but they liked the well known local representative. He is gone, so who knows what will happen, if it isn’t a ‘one horse race’…

  5. Regardless of what democracy is about … and I have a few theories there … Choice is about choice ….

    If you don’t a choice … its not a choice … is it?

  6. Actually, it will give National and others a read out on Labour and Green’s comparative appeal, as well as Labours capacity to get the voters to vote in the by-election. At least PM English has given the troops a free Christmas without politics ruining the taste of the repaste.

    • PDB

       /  23rd December 2016

      It’s ironic the left & MSM are complaining that democracy is about choice whilst complaining that National have made a democratic decision not to stand a candidate.

  7. Blazer

     /  23rd December 2016

    Democracy is about freedom of choice.So long as you make the ‘right’ choice.An example is Allende,democratically elected,but he was the wrong….’choice’!


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