Maori Party tangi

The Māori Party isn’t dead yet – they may or may not survive – but ‘funeral’ is a shortened version of tangihanga anyway.

Māori dictionary definition of tangi:

verb: to cry, mourn, weep, weep over

noun: sound, intonation, mourning, grief, sorrow, weeping, lament, salute, wave

There has been weeping and grieving over the electorate loss of Te Ururoa Flavell, the failure of Howie Tamati in his electorate, and therefore the exit from Parliament of both Flavell and Marama Fox.

I also lament what could be the end of the Māori Party. It will be difficult for them to come back from this, unless perhaps Labour get into Government this term and do another foreshore and seabed type betrayal of their strengthened Māori support.

Flavell was not flashy , but he was a hard working MP and Minister, dedicated to the Māori cause. He is a big loss.

Fox was a first term MP but she made a big impression. She had some controversial ideas, but she always argued her case with gusto and with passion. She had to be one of the better performing first termers. Sad also to see her go.

Māori voters have proven to be good tactical voters at times in the past, but I think they stuffed up this election, or may have, depending on the outcome of governing arrangements.

If Labour get to form the next government their increased number of Māori MPs may mean better Māori representation – or not. Labour has a history of not delivering.

It seems that a number of Māori voters were besotted with Jacinda Ardern, but Ardern has not shown a lot of connection with and empathy for Māori. She barely advocated on Māori issues in the election debates, she didn’t give them much attention in her campaigning. There was no sign of Māori at her election night speech.

Since then Ardern has said she will not agree to a referendum on the Māori seats in negotiations with NZ First. That’s a positive for Māori if she sticks to it, but what if that makes a coalition with NZ First impossible?

What if for any reason Labour doesn’t get to form the next Government?

Without the Māori Party there will be reduced Māori representation where it matters. It’s hard to even think of which National MP might be Minister of Māori Affairs, a role filled by Māori Party MPs over the last three terms.

NZ First might even negotiate a Māori seat referendum with National, the latter actually having the abolition of the Māori seats in their policy but left alone while they included the Māori Party in government.

If there is a general referendum on the Māori seats they may well end up being scrapped.

The Māori Party may not quite be ready for tangihanga, but Māori voters may end up doing some wailing and lamenting as a result of them dumping the party whose sole purpose was to promote Māori interests.

The tangi may have only just begun.

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38 Comments

  1. alloytoo

     /  26th September 2017

    It seemed to me that the Maori party had a grown up practical approach to interacting with the government of the day. Something the Greens could learn from.

    Reply
  2. Gezza

     /  26th September 2017

    There will be no referendum on abolishing the Maori seats.
    It would be suicide for National.
    Bill knows that.

    Reply
  3. Corky

     /  26th September 2017

    ”It seems that a number of Maori voters were besotted with Jacinda Ardern, but Ardern has not shown a lot of connection with and empathy for Maori. She barely advocated on Maori issues in the election debates, she didn’t give them much attention in her campaigning. There was no sign of Maori at her election night speech.”

    That should be plastered on the forehead of every Maori who voted for Labour. It was obvious to any astute observer Jacinda has as much in common with Maori as we have with Solomon Islands….a cursory understanding.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  26th September 2017

      That rather assumes that all Maoris think alike.No race consists of clones. I’d say that if those people were besotted with Pollyardern, it was as people, not as Maoris*

      How can anyone have empathy with an entire race of people ? Empathy with people like Malcolm Rewa ? The gang members selling life-destroying drugs ? The kaumatua who had sex with his daughter and had children who were also his grandchildren ? Hardly. One wouldn’t have it with people like that no matter what their colour was.

      * I hear Maori people say Maoris all the time.

      Reply
      • pickled possum

         /  26th September 2017

        Miss there is NO ‘S s’ in the Maori alphabet.
        Or Zz for that matta.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  26th September 2017

          That doesn’t affect the fact that I hear Maori people saying Maoris and using ‘s’ to make a plural of other Maori words.

          Reply
  4. Patzcuaro

     /  26th September 2017

    Race relations aren’t perfect and outcomes for Maori could be a lot better but holding a referendum on the Maori Seats would open up a giant can of worms. Polls have shown that the Maori Seats are not an important issue for most people.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  26th September 2017

      Hold a general referendum on them & they suddenly would be. My guess is by the time it was run & the case made for keeping them vs getting rid of them had been put to the public the abolition rednecks, dickheads & bigots would end up being totally outvoted, to their utter astonishment.

      Reply
  5. Emma Espiner: The death of the Māori Party

    I was completely uninspired by the National and Labour Party leaders’ aspiration for Māori on the basis of the major televised debates this election. If you blinked you would have missed the mention of Māori issues at all, and when they were raised they were relentlessly deficit-based. When Jacinda Ardern and Bill English were asked by Patrick Gower in the Newshub Leaders Debate what their most impactful policy for Māori would be they said respectively trades-training and NCEA levels. Really? That’s the best you’ve got? Again, it felt that Māori are just a problem to be solved.

    Beset with immense challenge, Māori have put their faith in Labour. How does Labour even begin to honour this support? Sure it has the biggest voice for Māori in Parliament now and I am encouraged by the entrance of Kiritapu Allan and Willow-Jean Prime, and the continued leadership of Kelvin Davis – one of the most genuinely good politicians we have.

    But what if they’re heading into opposition? Some may be cheering the fact that the Māori Party have been punished for dealing with National and say good riddance to government. But as the decisions are made at a Cabinet table with no strong Māori voice, that could look like a Pyrrhic victory. Be careful what you wish for.</blockquote.

    https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/09/24/49728/emma-espiner-the-death-of-the-mori-party

    Reply
    • Corky

       /  26th September 2017

      She forgot to mention how much the Maori Party screwed out of National. It was over a billion. That on top of ordinary funding all Maori are entitled to along with the rest of New Zeland.

      The problem for Maori isn’t money. Its implementation and use of that money at the grassroots level.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  26th September 2017

        Rubbish. Probably.

        Reply
      • Blazer

         /  26th September 2017

        where did the billion go?

        Reply
        • Corky

           /  26th September 2017

          It was more then a billion: as I said:

          ”The problem for Maori isn’t money. Its implementation and use of that money at the grassroots level.”

          Your guess is as good as mine.

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  26th September 2017

            Yup. As I thought. 😐
            Rubbish. 🤗

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  26th September 2017

              Not necessarily.

              Ask any ordinary Tainui how much they have benefitted from the huge settlement….

              Example; they were given a lot of houses in Huntly. One kaumatua (and there were probably others) wanted these to be sold to Maori renters- rent to own, low interest, that sort of thing. They were sold as a job lot to a developer who was given flak for this-nabbing all ? houses at a low rate, doing them up, selling them on at a profit….He eventually went to the paper and told his side-that he was approached by Tainui and offered the houses at a low price for the lot to get rid of them.

              There were a lot of houses, nice little houses, at the army base which was part of the settlement. Local Maori were offered these as rentals….and after a short time, the rents were raised to town prices which made them not worth it as they were not very near any town. It goes on and on.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  26th September 2017

              Aaaghhhh….I am agreeing with Corkkkkkkk (faints)

            • Gezza

               /  26th September 2017

              So that was Tainui. What about the others?

  6. Tipene

     /  26th September 2017

    Marama Fox was the resurrected hateful face of radical tribalism, and a huge turn-off for me.

    i say that as a supporter of Whanau Ora, inasmuch as Whanau Ora is able to illustrate its evidence base and outcome data.

    It was tribalism that offed the Maori Party, and it will be tribalism that resurrects it, if such a thing is possible.

    I see no place for a race-based Party in any Parliament.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  26th September 2017

      They won’t get any gains without one Tipene.
      Maramas too bolshie for her own good but where do you see the tribalism?

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  26th September 2017

        Why would I want to make gains because of my race? I can’t imagine anything so demeaning.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  26th September 2017

          You already do make gains because of your race. Or, more accurately, your culture.
          And you define gains in your terms.

          Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  26th September 2017

            That’s a false equivalence. My culture is available to anyone in the world who chooses to learn, adopt and implement it.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  26th September 2017

              That’s a false equivalence.
              No it’s not.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  26th September 2017

              And to put the matter bluntly, the fastest way for many Maori to make gains is to change their culture.

            • Gezza

               /  26th September 2017

              Which bits?

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  26th September 2017

              Violence; drugs; disrespecting education, reading, property, planning, setting goals and working hard to achieve them.

            • Alcohol abuse, violence against children, tolerating & glorifying gangs.

            • Gezza

               /  26th September 2017

              That’s not Maori culture. I know Maori down here they don’t do all that shit. That’s mostly the mongrels, the hybrids, the pakeha bits.

            • “the pakeha bits”

              So all the bad stuff is the Pakeha side and the good stuff the Maori side?

              Hate to break it to you but the Maori culture of distant past is no different to that of Pakeha past – war, rape, slavery, hunting stuff to extinction etc – though not so much the cannibalism stuff.

              In my experience Maori have done equally well when moving totally away from their culture when compared to those that have totally embraced their culture. Different strokes for different folks.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  26th September 2017

              Come off it, G. You know I am right.

            • Gezza

               /  26th September 2017

              You’re lumping them all together Al. You can’t validly do that, imo.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  26th September 2017

              I’m not lumping anything or anyone together. I’m saying that folk who adopt my cultural values will have better chances of a good life whatever their race or heritage.

            • Gezza

               /  26th September 2017

              How can that be so? I luv ya like an Irish brother, but you’re a miserable moaning bastard on here sometimes. Everybody knows that!

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