We are now entering our regular quinquennial celebration of the idea that tinkering with our voting system will somehow give us freedom from politicians and all the other moochers and looters.
What a joke.
Somehow NZers have become enthralled with the notion that if only the perfect electoral system can be devised, then our golden days will somehow return. It’s an obsession. Every drinker at every leaner in every bar in the country has their own special theory of how, if only we could raise/lower the threshold/number of MPs, and encourage/discourage new talent/carpetbaggers, a new time of prosperity and wonder will be ours. At dinner parties and barbecues, one will be dragged into a small group in the corner discussing electoral boundaries, and how a referendum on the Maori seats will solve everything. Every person on every bus—not to mention every talkback caller and commentator on every radio station—seems to have a notebook with notes therein on how, if we could only follow the plan for electoral change of the passenger/caller/pontificator everyone could live happily ever after.
People: wake the fuck up.
Can we not get over this obsession about tinkering with our voting system, and go for freedom instead?
What about that for a plan?
The word “politics” comes from the Greek “poly” and ticks meaning “small blood-sucking parasites.” Instead of obsessing every few years over how the bloodsuckers are chosen, could we not resolve instead to put the important things beyond the vote instead?
Do that, I’d suggest, and it won’t matter how you choose your parasites.
And you’ll be able to find something much better to talk about next time you have your elbow on a bar leaner.