Rodney Hide has got a lot of flak for telling National privately what Tau Henare chose to say publicly – that he’s prepared to hold fast to at least one ACT policy with which he went into the election.
Oddly however, it’s not Tau who’s in trouble for leaking, but Rodney who’s in trouble for grandstanding. (Not really sure how you grandstand when it’s somebody else letting your cat out of the bag, but there you go.)
Anyway, in a parliament where election promises are forgotten before the new government has even been sworn in, for staying true to one principle in the ACT Party manifesto – the principle of One Law For All – Rodney has my congratulations. And for everyone else claiming that it’s the person insisting on colour-blind councils who’s playing the race card – yes, I’m looking at you Tau Henare and Tariana Turia and Sues Kedgely and Bradford, and sundry partial bloggers – Lindsay Perigo has a message for you all. It’s this: Just Say 'No!' to Apartheid!
The fact that Green MPs Sue Kedgley and Sue Bradford are demanding Rodney Hide's resignation over separate Maori representation on the proposed Auckland super-council is a pretty good indication that Mr Hide is right, says SOLO Principal Lindsay Perigo.
Mr Hide is threatening to resign as Local Government Minister if the National-led government does an about-face and approves separate representation.
"Judging by the weasel-words emanating from Prime Minister John Key's office, it seems the government is wavering," says Perigo. "National is supposed to be abolishing the separate Maori seats in Parliament. It would be unconscionable to allow such apartheid atlocal government level.
"The two socialist Sues are urging Mr Hide to resign regardless. These serial Nanny Statists are terrified that Mr Hide will let the fresh air of freedom into New Zealand's Town Halls. What this totalitarian twosome tout as 'local democracy' is simply a ruse by which their ilk get to ban everything they disapprove of.
"Mr Hide is to be congratulated on taking a principled stand. Maori are as capable as anyone else of standing on merit in local body elections. To say in this day and age that they require guaranteed separate representation is outrageously, patronisingly, racist. Maori Party leader Tariana Turia should be ashamed of herself for promoting such redneckery.
"The only reason Mr Hide should be made to resign are his shirts and ties and shaven head, which frighten horses, children and the elderly," Perigo concludes.
And finally, to those who are suggesting that John Key should take Rodney’s offer and award him the D.C.M., may I suggest you consider that while election promises are for National no more than something to say in November and forget about at the first Budget, National was once nonetheless enormously popular for that very policy, One Law For All, for which Rodney is now under fire.
Wouldn’t it be ironic if a National Party with Bill English as second-in-command were now to sack the Minister of Local Government for espousing the very policy that rescued National from the near-oblivion into which that same Bill English once plunged it,
UPDATE 1: You want to see someone playing the race card, Tariana? Then look no further than the US of A, where you can be an “official poll watcher” who carries a night stick and issues threats to voters at the entrance to a polling place, just as long as you’re a member of both the Democratic Party and the “New Black Panther Party for Self-Defense.” As far as Obama’s Associate Attorney General Thomas J. Perelliis concerned, ‘dem threats is alright with us jez as long as you is black. Read the story here: Now THIS is what a racist Administration looks like.
UPDATE 2: Eric Crampton suggests that having separate Maori seats would end up reducing Maori influence rather than increasing it. I think he’s offering that as a reason not to include Apartheid seats, rather than the reverse.