Here at MyThinks, our correspondent has been ferreting and weaseling information out of various political operatives as the coalition negotiations between the major players get underway following the election on Saturday. From the information he has gathered, we have constructed an exact* transcript of negotiations as they have happened so far.
LOCATION: Meeting room 13, Beehive.
LABOUR: Hello Winston. Good to see you. Please come in and sit down. Can we get you anything?
WINSTON: No thanks.
LABOUR: So let’s get down to it. What’s your position? What does your party want?
LABOUR: Um… pardon?
WINSTON: Just gimmie.
LABOUR: Um… gimmie? Gimmie what?
WINSTON: Everything. Gimmie. Gimmie! GIMMIE!!!!
LABOUR: Ok… You are asking quite a lot so we’ll have to go back to caucus and discuss this further. We’ll contact you once we’ve had our discussion.
(Labour negotiators get up from table to leave)
(Labour walk towards the door)
WINSTON: Gimmie!! Gimmie!
(Labour continue out the door)
WINSTON: (calling after Labour negotiators) Gimmie!
LOCATION: Meeting room 13, Beehive. Later that afternoon.
NATIONAL: Hello Winston. Hope you’re feeling well. What would you like? Is there anything the team can get you?
WINSTON: No thanks.
NATIONAL: So let’s get down to it. What’s your position? What does your party want?
NATIONAL: Done. Welcome to government.
*transcript may not be exact or based in reality of any kind.
The brains-trust of MyThinks has been crunching the numbers following the election day result. Our analysis has offered up some very interesting possibilities in terms of the make up of the next parliament.
National / New Zealand First
The most likely outcome. New Zealand First have a history of forming coalitions with the party winning the largest share of the vote. National have a history of doing just about anything to stay in power. A National /NZ First government would probably have Bill English as Prime Minister and Winston Peters as Minister of Whatever He Wants. Paula Bennett will be left out in the cold and given something unimportant like sports or tourism. Look for Gerry Brownlee to order a new speakers chair after breaking the old one.
Labour / New Zealand First / Greens
An unlikely scenario as Winston Peters has ruled out ever working with the Greens, unless he gets exactly what he wants, in which case this is possible. Since Labour are not National this is not really on the cards. The Greens have said they are happy to work with Winston so this could be an option, but Winston thinks they are a bunch of dirty hippies, so this is highly unlikely.
Labour / New Zealand First with support from the Greens
Possible. Helen Clark’s last parliament left the Greens on the cross benches supporting Labour on confidence and supply. Since Winston has said he won’t work with the Greens it is possible Labour could go with this option. Watch in the coming days for National and its proxies to repeat over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again that they are the largest party in parliament and therefore it is written into lore they must form the next government. With the media wanting an instant solution to the those claims to round off their 24 hour news cycle, this could put a nail in this coffin for Labour.
National / Green
Not content to have destroyed the Māori Party, United Future, nearly New Zealand First and almost ACT, National proxies have today suggested the Greens start sniffing around for some baubles of power. Far right commentator Matthew Hooton said James Shaw could be Climate Change Minister in the new National government. National don’t really believe in climate change so it would be like putting Helen Clark in charge of dishing out knighthoods. No, Hoots is only suggesting this because he knows a) the Greens would never do it so he can take the moral high ground if they go with Labour, and b) if, by some bizarre stroke of fate, do decide to do it, then National can take them out (and not the pleasant table for two at Denny’s take you out, the Tony Soprano concrete gumboots take you out).
National minority government
National could try to run it alone. After all, Bill English said almost half of New Zealand voted for him. Tough shit that over half voted against him. A minority government would be doomed to failure so, by all means, crack on.
National / Labour
There’s nothing stopping these to neoliberal centrist parties creating a grand coalition. Except the inability of all of Labour to prevent a little bit of sick leaping into the back of their throat every time they thought about it.
ACT-led minority government
Feasibly ACT could cobble together a loose arrangement with some of the larger parties in parliament (at last count, that was all of them). In that way ACT could be the first single seat minnow party to lead a western government. But back in the real world where relevance is a key issue, with just 0.5% of the party vote, ACT might now be the Nigel NoMates of New Zealand politics.
Greens-led party coalition
The Greens could throw caution to the wind and ask individual like-minded MPs from any party to join them for a party on the roof of Bowen House. This has nothing to do with what we’ve been talking about but one can only imagine the quality of the craft beer at this gathering.
PR guru and far-right enthusiast Matthew Hooton tries to run the government from inside the plush offices of the Taxpayer’s Union. WhaleOil and David Farrar get wind of it and tell on him to Judith Collins. National implodes after six months in power and the country heads back to the polls.
Nobody has any idea what the hell Winston Peters is going to do so we should all just go about our normal everyday business until the National Party bribes him the most and they sign the contract.
In our first in-depth look at policy, MyThinks interviews Minister of Finance Steven Joyce about the National Party’s vision for New Zealand post-election – if they are elected into power.
Thinks: Mr Joyce. Thanks for joining us.
Joyce: Thanks for having me.
Thinks: Now… you have been saying a lot this election cycle about Labour’s plans to increase taxes…
Joyce: Yes. They’re planning to tax everything.
Thinks: …let me finish…
Joyce: You will be finished if Labour gets in. Do you know they plan to put a tax on people listening to progressive rock? It’s appalling. People should be able to listen to Genesis or Yes and not have to worry that the Labour Party is breathing down their neck with a collection bag.
Thinks: Um… OK. This wasn’t the plan for this interview, but…. where have you got this information from. How do you know, for example, that Labour are going to introduce this prog rock tax?
Joyce: Well they haven’t not said they won’t, have they?
Thinks: Pardon… I mean… what?
Joyce: Well… have you heard the Labour Party specifically say they are not going to introduce a progressive rock tax this election cycle.
Thinks: No, but….
Joyce: Exactly! This proves they are definitely planning to tax your progressive rock listening habits.
Thinks: I’m not sure I’m following you…
Joyce: You don’t have to follow me. All you have to do is listen to me say the words, “Labour is introducing a new tax” and everything else will follow.
Thinks: I see. But Labour have said they are having a tax working group to review the tax system.
Joyce: Exactly correct.
Thinks: And they’ve said the working group will be focused on making the tax system fairer.
Joyce: Yes. Correct.
Thinks: And they don’t want to pre-empt the findings of this working group by saying what taxes they will look at so they working group may have the freedom to investigate any tax which they might deem to be unfair.
Joyce: Correct again.
Thinks: And before the 2008 election you said you were going to set up a tax working group, which you did end up doing.
Thinks: And you ended up putting up GST even though you hadn’t mentioned this tax rise before that 2008 election.
Joyce: That is also correct.
Thinks: So Labour is being truthful with the public now by telling them what their vision for a fairer tax system might be by, say, taxing income on investment housing.
Joyce: Yup. Correct.
Thinks: And the National Party were being economical with the truth before the 2008 election by leaving out any mention of possible in the future tax increases.
Joyce: That is correct too.
Thinks: So why are you trying to get away with lying to the New Zealand public previously and also lying about the Labour Party’s plans for a fairer tax system?
Joyce: Oh… now I see where you’re going… No. That’s not true. National always tells the truth. We always have. Especially when we are talking words out of our mouths.
Thinks: Is any of that last sentence true?
Joyce: Are we on the record?
Joyce: Then yes.
Thinks: Well then Mr Joyce… what’s your plan? What is your vision? How will you deal with the housing crisis, the crisis in mental health, the chronic under-funding in our hospitals and schools and the threat of climate change?
Joyce: Oh… that’s easy. We’re going to spend billions of dollars on roads and irrigation.
Thinks: Okay… thanks for joining us today Mr Joyce.
Joyce: But Labour. Tax.
Thinks: Thank you Mr Joyce.
Following the leaders’ debates this week and the release of the latest political poll showing Labour consolidating its lead over National, MyThinks thought it was important to tap into the thinks of someone on the left. With Jacinda Adern’s stardust continuing to rise, we asked for an opinion by Labour Party volunteer and former meat worker Brian Smith.
Oh my God… I mean… I just can’t…
I mean… are we going to…. but if you just look… um… can you believe…. it’s just like the… I mean… if we could even just…. but then it might just all… and if something… oh God I couldn’t even…
I just hope that we… but if we don’t…. I mean… it’s just like when you… and then you don’t… but if you… oh my God…. oh… my… god…
We haven’t… nine years… nine years of National… and now we might…. I really hope… I really, really hope… I can’t even imagine….
Jacinda… Jacinda… she’s just… and Bill English… potato… Jacinda… oh my God…. I mean… I just can’t… words….
Jacinda… words…. can’t believe it.
MyThinks likes to delve into the pits of hell for some of its content. Today is no exception. Here with his views on Labour Party taxation policy is our resident right-wing pundit Dr Edward Pharctähd.
I’m fuming. As a right wing pundit and a New Zealander I am absolutely livid. I haven’t been this apoplectic since someone told me the Orewa speech was racist. But here we are.
Last evening I was enjoying a nice night at home in front of the telly for the leaders debate. Usually I watch Michael Hosking because he’s got good ideas about life and how we should be living it.
Then on comes this young woman talking about lifting children out of poverty as well as health and education. On and on she went hardly letting the men get their words out.
Then she starts talking about tax. She says she wants to set up a working group to look into the fairness of the tax system yet she won’t tell us: a) what taxes she’s going to look at and, b) what taxes she might change because she doesn’t want to “pre-determine” the outcome of the review.
This is preposterous. I want to know the outcome of this review this very minute. Right now. Before they’ve been appointed. Before they’ve been sworn. Before they’ve done any work at all.
This uncertainty will destroy the sound fiscal stewardship National has given the country over the past nine years. I’ll tell you this much – National certainly know how to run the economy. And apart from the 18 new taxes they’ve introduced, they’ve introduced no new taxes.
We need to know right now from Jacinda Ardern how much she is going to raise the taxes of hard working New Zealanders so I know exactly how much tax I need to avoid.
Dr Edward Pharctähd, BTlkRdo