For the 1st time in his tenure as Speaker Trevor Mallard kicked an MP out of the House. Jason Walls asks if all the theatre & spectacle to make a point was worth it for the Nats

Gerry Brownlee

By Jason Walls

I don’t think I’ll ever tire of watching the faces in the public gallery in Parliament during Question Time.

Often, they’re seeing the theatrics, the drama, the heckling, the jeering and the interjections that come with the hour of questions for the first time.

From my spot in the press gallery, I get a perfect view – mouths agape, shocked at the scenes unfolding below.

The House in Question Time is often likened to a disorderly classroom and in the public gallery, onlookers have a front row ticket.

This analogy has always been punctuated by MPs being kicked out of the House for misbehaving – the “naughty kid” being thrown out of the room.

But, until this week, an MP had yet to be thrown out of the House by current Speaker Trevor Mallard.

Instead, Mallard has chosen to deduct supplementary questions from the Opposition if its MPs are being unruly. If Government MPs are acting up, he will award supplementary questions to the Opposition.

National don’t like this and have good reason to be upset.

As pointed out by political commentator Ben Thomas, it’s harder for the Opposition to plan a strategy when it has no idea how many supplementary questions it may or may not have.

“Imagine going into a three-hour exam, being told halfway through you have an extra hour, then 45 minutes later being told actually it ends in 15 minutes,” he tweeted.

Even if National has actually been the beneficiary of the process – as Mallard points out, the Opposition has gained an extra 22 more supplementary questions than it would have otherwise because of unruly Government MPs – it still makes it very hard to figure out a plan of attack.

This issue has been boiling away for months, but it reached melting point this week.

Bennett, Brownlee and Bennett

On Wednesday, after a scuffle with the Speaker on this issue, National Deputy Leader Paula Bennett ejected herself from the chamber.

The next day, she was kicked out by Mallard. David Bennett, National MP for Hamilton East, came within a whisker of following his Deputy Leader and Mallard even went as far as threatening to “name him.”

As far as punishments for MPs, being “named” by the Speaker is one of the most severe and could result in said MP being suspended and docked pay.

Shadow Leader of the House Gerry Brownlee also questioned the Speaker’s “neutrality” in subsequent media stand-ups and a letter to the Speaker, he made public.

It has been suggested the events in the House on Wednesday and Thursday were orchestrated – a strategic move by National to try to draw attention to their claims the Speaker was being unfair to their side.

If this was the case, National well and truly achieved its goal. Paula Bennett did the Breakfast TV shows, Brownlee did the drive-time radio and all the while newspapers across the country covered the story.

By the end of the day, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis were aware of National’s beef with Mallard.

Although Brownlee and co might chalk that up as a win, all I could think about is those gob-smacked onlookers in the public gallery.

Outside of maybe a 400-meter radius of Parliament, very few people care about question allocation and the Speaker’s rules during question time.

It is very much a beltway issue.

For the rest of the country, they’re seeing the “naughty kids” throwing their toys because they didn’t get their way – never mind Bennett and Brownlee do have a reason to be upset.

On Thursday, Mallard notably did not deduct or award any supplementary questions.

Whether he has bowed to the pressure, or it was just a temporary decision is yet to be seen.

But one thing is for sure – it was more than just the usual onlookers in the public gallery sitting mouths agape, watching MPs play politics this week.

Was it worth it, Mr Brownlee?

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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82 Comments

I’d it just me or does the right resent not being in power so much more than the left. Particularly Paula Bennett. As someone who was a minister for nine years she seems completely lost in opposition.

You really need to watch the question where Paula walked out. Jacinda was mopping the floor with her. Paula kept asking what she thought were tough questions and Jacinda kept owning up to Labour policy and saying yes that is what I believe. Then Paula would ask the same question again and repeat. The only way out was to stage a walkout to make it look like Mallards fault.

Anyway NZers don’t like Mallard. They didn’t like him before, they won’t like him after. But thrusting Brownlee and Bennett into the spotlight fighting a battle over the rules of the debating chamber won’t help national.

What is more interesting is the only one making yards this week was Crusher. And won’t that help the internal National Party dynamics. Bridges has been in hiding since his cringe budget speech. Now Crusher has a real win in the media. She is really becoming the Cunliffe or the National Party, the thing they know is bad but are desperate to try. She is just waiting behind bridges building her power, convincing them she is the only one with enough mongrel to take on this government.

Nationals biggest risk is their number of MPs. They want to keep their jobs. Even a small decline will see many people out on their ear. That is going to limit some MPs patience for the poor performance.

‘......And in their desperation, they turned to a man they didn't fully understand.’

I believe you are watching jockeying for position for when the axe falls on Simon Bridges, he's dreadful and will go. It must be difficult for him trying to keep his back away from both Collins and Bennett, not sure about Gerry, will he come through the middle and nose them both out, or will, as I suspect, Bennett be the next National Party leader. They have their own ABC (anyone but Collins, brigade) so I think her best chances are in her mind. I also think if she did become leader, her shortcomings would be exposed very quickly, as I think she is all hat and no cattle.

I agree and disagree. Collins is building her power and profile. It Bennett is on the way down. Her lack of ability is apparent. I wouldn’t be surprised if she lost the deputy leadership before the next election.

Collins is generally hated, by the voting public and within her own party, which is why I see Brownlee as a real possibility. The Nats will nose dive if Collins gets the reins, of that you can be sure.

Oh I agree Collins is a dead end but she will force the other MPs into a corner where the only way to move past her is to give her a turn just to prove it won’t work. It’s exactly the same as Cunliffe.

And I believe, if she does get the job, then she will do a Cunliffe after, nothing, I think she is all p*#$ and wind, and has way too much baggage to be credible.

you may be right about the baggage - and she may be unelectable - but she was extremely well respected and liked as a minister in every government department - they cheered when she got the corrections portfolio back - so plenty of substance

She really should be the leader at this stage - even for 18 months as she would rip the wanabee, has been and never should be ministers apart - and expose them for what they are - all hype and no substance

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I'd agree. She's not only the best they have but she is also just plain good - and effective - whether inside or outside government. She's been tainted mainly by her associations (personal relationships) and her write up in Dirty Politics.

If you put that out of mind when listening to her - she makes a whole lot of sense on a number of issues. Skilled would be the word I'd attach to her. Whether that skill is 'admirable' - well, depends on how you look on politics.

I agree Collins is competent. I was very glad she cancelled Nick Smith insane - raise ACC rates so the private sector can compete policy.

However, she also has a strong machevallian streak and isn’t good at covering it. Her ratio of nasty is too high. The public know this and they don’t like it. It’s very similar to Cunliffe he was smart and a good communicator but people didn’t like how naked his ambition was.

No, she’s been tainted because people perceive her as a nasty piece of work. Every national mp who participated at a senior level in the key/English administration is also tainted by association with this ridiculous credit bubble and a failure to properly manage immigration issues. She appeals to the muldoonist rump of the national party. She has too much baggage and does not have a sufficient following even among natural national voters. Yuk

Well said Kate.

Although she failed the Voight-Kampff test used for detecting replicants https://thestandard.org.nz/so-very-funny/ (demo clip from Blade Runner https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Umc9ezAyJv0) However that could be how the National party like their MPs.

Paula should swap party’s
She’s was a solo mum who used the state benefits & education to elevate herself
Brownlee could be Nationals minister of wine & cheese
Bridges is just out of pull-ups
Crusher has sometimes questionable ethics but is very intelligent & a delightful entertainer but she’s not the full package yet as a leader of a political party She doesn’t carry her baggage well
I know all these “right wing “ people as I once was in ACT before it festered and went rancid long ago

"Swap to"? Let her be where she is and bring them down even further

And John Key grew up in a state home. Let's be honest they were both politicians pulling the ladder up and they are all feathering their nests.

Nationals arrogance is what got them out of power. Westie Paula can't help herself, Brownlee was angry because there wasn't enough at morning tea and their leader (Mr wet fish) can't control the other children. JK and Bill English don't have time as they are too busy helping the Auckland Blues get better. Somehow their strategy of continually saying "there is no (housing) crises!!" is not working for the team.

National continues to lose the plot and will sit in opposition after next election again. My hopes of them saving us from the raft of taxes planned by the anti-prosperity CoL is fading away everyday.

I expect to see more and more of this type of comment - people who support right of centre policies, but despair at the ineptitude of some of the leaders of the right of centre party. National has always prided themselves on their people relative to labour but it was a mirage. Key and English were competent supported by others but there are a whole crew who are not up to scratch. They need to isolate them and move them on.

What are you saying man ?
What about Maurice Williamson ?
Was anyone at Air NZ ?

*dulplicate deleted*

I’m developing a “two face” mindset as the months go by. I don’t trust the Left as their go to tool of choice is to tax, but with no job I no longer have any material income to tax so it’s other people who will pay and yet they really are doing little on that front anyway so far.

If I closed my eyes, and suspended my confirmation bias on events since the election I would think we had a National lite Government. Taxinda and her COL are woeful performers but so far that presents as low/no change which is strangely comforting. Nothing transformational is happening whatsoever. I’m not sure what you lefties expected but I hope it wasn’t much because that’s what you have got, nothing much. Even worse, if you are a unionist you have to criticise your own blood.

I’m not sure if this lot will be re-elected. I hope not, but in the meantime their governance is not threatening my sensibilities at all as it’s life as usual.

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National was labour-lite when in government also. It’s a function of MMP, pulls parties towards the centre.

John Key stole so many Labour policies I used to joke Labour was getting all their policies implemented, the only downside was not being in the seats of power.

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Yes, this is Western democracy working well, effectively a benevolent and responsible one party system.

The greatest threat to our way of life is high immigration and the implementation of any new laws designed to control people's opinions in the interest of public harmony. We will have lost something very precious if there are criminal penalties for speaking our own minds. Unfortunately the up and coming generations are inclined to believe it is okay suppress opinions and humour by judicial means.

MP's born in repressive countries are already talking about bringing in repressive laws for Kiwis. Religious groups of all denominations are keen to see their nonsense protected from criticism by the implementation of harsh laws which forbid criticism and punish offenders. This is not the Kiwi way.

Up until now both National and Labour have resisted calls for these sorts of laws and long may it continue. It is likely that the calling for such laws will come from the minority parties so thank God we have National and Labour in control.

You can criticize all you like, as can I, just as Folau can have his bible beliefs and be subject to criticism, but you do need to know when criticism creeps over into hate speech, which is not okay. I will criticize religion very vocally, but I do not reserve my criticism for any one religion, I do not believe any religion should have any carve out from the law such as Gloriavale not allowing all of their children full access to a full education and free choice, as I do not believe there should be any carve out for Sikhs to carry knives that no-one else is allowed to, as I do not think that anyone who chooses to cover their face should be exempt from having to show their face in a court of law etc, however, I will back all of those people's right to CHOOSE to follow the belief of their choice, but I would love to see an R18 tag on religion and I would like to see the definition of charity for taxation purposes to have the phrase, promotion of religion as being a definition of what a charity is.
It is not that speak your mind, it is how you speak it but if your speech suggests that one group of people should dominate another, then stand by to get thoroughly and deservedly spanked.

Can you define what "thoroughly and deservedly spanked" actually means? Are you advocating corporal punishment for wrongthink? I know you are not but you see others may think you are advocating violence and bring you before an actual court. See how perilous it all is when you start down this path?

Why do you self censor when it comes to religion? Why can't we criticize a particular religions beliefs and practices? Why can't we consider one religion, or one lifestyle, superior to another?

Basically I am advocating for wrongthink to be protected by law or custom and not that people should be protected from wrongthink.

We should only consider new laws that protect individual rights. We are entering into a very interesting phase of technology where a pretty good profile of your mindscape could be ascertained through monitoring your Internet use and analyzing your computer. Laws should be established to forbid the authorities from delving into these things much like they would be forbidden from dissecting your brain.

Unfortunately because of diversity we now have a much greater threat of terrorism and IT analysis and monitoring is particularly useful. Perhaps we could have a system where upstanding citizens are protected from this delving but then we start to stray into the area of discrimination and defacto superiority of certain people.

"Spanked" then. If you want it back without the inverted commas, then it will cost extra.
"Why can't we consider one religion, or one lifestyle, superior to another?" you can, just don't expect everyone to agree with you. I don't expect everyone to agree with me.

It is the establishment of laws to regulate this that I have an issue with. I encourage everyone to have their own opinions. For example Golriz Ghahraman, Green MP's call to bring in more Internet regulation:

https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/innovation/104113652/europe-showing-nz-...

I see that the readers of Stuff have voted decisively against further regulation of the Internet in the poll on the news article which is quite pleasing. Ghahraman take note!

And you know what, agree or disagree, she is entitled to her view.

I just want more voters to understand that she is not a guardian of their freedom but is pushing an agenda that has been shaped by quite a different history.

Yes, a history where she has been on the receiving end of words such as you seem to think is just free speech.

Dear Zach
Which religious society gave us mathematics ?
Hint > it wasn’t Christian

I don't think anyone "gave us" mathematics although it is a Greek word. It was more the discovery of patterns inherent in nature. Sumerians, Babylonians, Egyptians and Greeks made important contributions although the people living in these areas now are probably quite different.

One theory is that most ancient history is complete romantic BS made up by nineteenth century Germans. I tend to subscribe to this theory as well as the one about the origin of consciousness in the breakdown of the bicameral mind which really throws a cat amongst the pigeons.

I think he means Arabic numerals.

Huzzah for the representation of 0, and rational numbers, without which maths and even calculus would have been borked as well as the binary system for computers. Roman numerals were a literal drag financially.

Not sure what you mean by Huzzah. According to our current myths the character zero got to Europe via the Moor's conquest of Spain but they didn't invent the concept, just, maybe, the character. Babylonians, Mayans and Indians had a different character for zero.

Most of our cherished beliefs about historical happenings are almost entirely wrong I believe.

It seems that Northern Lights is suggesting that we should gladly sacrifice our liberty because Moors, who probably stole the concept of zero from someone else, conquered Spain long ago and the Spanish adopted its use in mathematics. It doesn't seem a good enough reason to me to plunge us all into a dystopian, Orwellian nightmare world.

This is also further evidence of a theory that I adopted after watching the classic and all time great movie Battlefield Earth. Warlike, barbaric and vital people use the technology of their subjugated enemies to advance their technology for military reasons.

*cough* secular government for a reason, godwin's law *cough*

I thought you would love immigration Zachary, as it will have contributed significantly to the growth of your property portfolio.

Great seeing Zach has another interest like the Internet

I don't mind immigration and am indeed grateful for it from a personal wealth point of view. My problem is with those that seek sanctuary here and then go on to criticize us and attempt to change us by taking away our liberty.

I transitioned from nationalism to globalism when I realized the former was a lost cause and that the Global Cities and the globalist empire was my "cup of tea" because it was essentially an Indo-European manifestation with its style, technology, particularly jet travel, but also its laws and institutions.

Every effort should be made to stop it descending into some Orwellian clown world however.

So I take you have been following the recent trends in facial recognition like China's use of facial recognition and attention reading of students and the scoring of citizens on a social points based system (where if you have low points you lose access to services).
https://news.slashdot.org/story/18/05/28/0156206/high-school-in-china-in...

Along with literature proposing similar scenarios like Black Mirror or the eventual reaction to such measures like in Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson in 1992:

Y.T.'s mom pulls up the new memo, checks the time, and starts reading it. The estimated reading time is 15.62 minutes. Later, when Marietta does her end-of-day statistical roundup, sitting in her private office at 9:00 P.M., she will see the name of each employee and next to it, the amount of time spent reading this memo, and her reaction, based on the time spent, will go something like this:

Less than 10 mm. Time for an employee conference and possible attitude counseling.

10-14 min. Keep an eye on this employee; may be developing slipshod attittide.

14-15.61 mm. Employee is an efficient worker, may sometimes miss important details.

Exactly 15.62 mm. Smartass. Needs attitude counseling.

15.63-16 mm. Asswipe. Not to be trusted.

16-18 mm. Employee is a methodical worker, may sometimes get hung up on minor details.

More than 18 mm. Check the security videotape, see just what this employee was up to (e.g., possible unauthorized restroom break).

Y.T.'s mom decides to spend between fourteen and fifteen minutes reading the memo. It's better for younger workers to spend too long, to show that they're careful, not cocky. It's better for older workers to go a little fast, to show good management potential. She's pushing forty. She scans through the memo, hitting the Page Down button at reasonably regular intervals, occasionally paging back up to pretend to reread some earlier section. The computer is going to notice all this. It approves of rereading. It's a small thing, but over a decade or so this stuff really shows up on your work-habits summary.

Love this blog it’s one of the best
Well Done interest.co.nz

Rex what I personally look for are non partisan political people
The them and us partisanship must stop or the continual churn politic paradigm will continue with the same old arguments about the them and us
Certainly suits the real powers behind politicians they love an easy path to manipulating the voters
Enjoy your retirement my friend

I know they should change the team colours to something more in our faces like white vs black. Red vs blue is just too subtle for people to recognise the us vs them and the pointless name calling arguments which force the sides to eat each other alive instead of effective debate and NZ has coalitions making defective rainbows anyway. Essentially each government run is different anyway with different starting points, different MPs and different laws they enact. It would be better though if there was not such blatant discrimination & ostracism of the lower classes & disabled, it tends to play the commenters hand.

Full credit to John Key when he took over. He lifted National out of the old hat style of slanging politics and that made them look fresh and modern against a Labour lot that looked dour and sour and stale. Looks like National have reverted to type. For instance, the super-an attack on WP pre election was ill advised, self defeating but they just couldn’t help themselves. Labour had been just as mindless with the spy trip to Melbourne against Key. But getting back to the present,in my opinion Brownlee at times has the persona of an outright buffoon, he is about as subtle as a bulldozer driver, and the National Party should realise, the more he fronts for them, the more damage he does to them.

To be fair Chessmaster you don’t even have a proper property taxation system down there yet
Failure to charge a simple 1% property transfer tax and a decent 1.5% on assessed value annual property tax means Auckland will not only remain deep in debt but will go bankrupt
How will the $5Billion Super City of a mere 1.5 million debt ever be repaid without more taxation ?
How about it grand C master ?

What u saying? We become like Aussie (I assume that's where you are) ? They tax the shit out of everything. So hard to do business there. I have some properties there, get pinged with taxes non-stop. Made money on gains but would have made more in Auckland. The Aussie beauracacy is insane, mid business friendly and no one really helps you. Ffn land tax, stamp duty, capital gains, payroll tax, wealth tax, luxury car tax keeps going on and on, plus the racist attitudes of the Aussies. Don't know why i invested there.

Our tax was very Pro business and investment unlike Aussie. Not sure where we'll end up with this coalition lot.

That's a good reason why we should focus on land tax instead of taxing business, though. Make business easy and drop the company tax rate (and personal) and use land tax instead. Make it as easy as possible to do business and discourage unproductive land banking.

Is the CoSL (coalition of sore losers) version of prosperity selling houses to each other and the Chinese for ever higher values?

That's not a good kind of prosperity.

To me the biggest political risk the government faces is housing. Which was the same political credibility problem that the Key/English government had.

New to NZ polling by Ipsos shows that housing is the top concern for all income groups, males and females and all ages except for the over 65's where health/hospitals pushes housing into second place.
Interestingly, there polling in Australia shows housing is only the fourth highest concern.
https://www.ipsos.com/sites/default/files/New%20Zealand%20Ipsos%20Issues...

It is not just the quantitative polling data that shows the importance of housing. Qualitatively the housing crisis narrative is something that the government wheels out when under political pressure. Also the venom which the likes of Judith Collins goes after Phil Twyford in large part reflects how National is desperate to move housing from being a sign of their incompetence to one of Labour/Coalition government incompetence.

KiwiBuild in the last month or so has not covered itself in glory -with price hikes and 'buying off the plans' not actually building any more announcements. There is a possibility the government is ok with that, not wanting to over promise and then under deliver. But should under delivery announcements become a pattern then this could be very costly to the government's credibility.

I have done a paper on improving the competitiveness of housing intensification in Auckland. I think it could over time increase the build rate in Auckland by a few thousand houses a year. It wouldn't affect absolute land values -so shouldn't massively affect the value of existing houses -but it would produce a greater variety of houses -some of which would be affordable -so suitable for KiwiBuild.

I would be interested in readers comments.
https://medium.com/land-buildings-identity-and-values/can-great-design-h...

That is really interesting. The problem you discuss is something I’ve thought about for years since I visited London and observed all the identical houses. I don’t see why it matters that they all look the same, it doesn’t seem to hurt the value there.

I like your model of how a group a might assemble and share profits. It would help if the building costs were a bit cheaper potentially increasing the intensification gains to the initial land owners.

The other thing that might help is perception of gains over time. At the moment the perception is that waiting always increases the returns. I believe this will not be the case for the next 10 years. This will increase the opt in rate.

Yes it was interesting that after writing the article -it became more obvious how important construction costs became in the economics of intensification. Which should have been obvious. The cheaper it is to build and better the finished product is, the more likely it is that people will want to replace an old house with some new houses.

You are also right, that if the hold and wait for capital gains investment strategy has a poor expected return then it is far more likely that landowners will opt-in to a intensification scheme that offers an immediate good return.

It would be interesting to look at how you presented the options to people:

• buyout - guaranteed price up front
• buyout with some upside - a certain price up front plus a potential further gain based on success of development
• new house plus a potential gain depending on success of development

A financier - potentially the government - could pay out the people that want to be paid out, and carry the risk for people who want certainty. This would allow some people to move on immediately while others who want the full benefits of investing in the development can let their money ride and potentially take full financial benefit.

Actually I can see lots of different models -within this genre. A scheme could be customised to be more valuable to elderly people. They could get a purpose built retirement villa -wheelchair accessible etc within the intensification scheme. Because that would smaller than a big high end townhouse they get more equity released in cash -which might help fund their retirement.

Another variation is that Master Planning Block companies could just do the section layout -giving the old residents a plot and cash to build -using whichever firm and design they like -within an overall masterplan design.

Correct Brendon. Housing has been a problem for number of years but has gone beyond since last few years when national was given 3rd term by people of NZ.

Labour has been voted but I understand are having cold feet and are trying to Delay and / or dilute ban on foreign buyer.

Wait n watch

Brendon, I am pretty disappointed to date in Labour's Kiwibuild. A year or two ago they were talking up a much more interventionist approach, I think they proposed a new prefab plant in Bay Of Plenty? What happened to that idea? The Kiwibuild idea is 4 or 5 years old, why weren't they much more ready to run? Perhaps they did not genuinely believe they could win the election?

I read a Newland Burling and Co. Limited Facebook thread about ‘What’s wrong with the Building Industry?’. It gave an insight into what builders are facing now. If voters seriously thought an Oxfam director was going to come in and transform the industry, then they were delusional. The only hope now seems to be a cataclysmic market crash that somehow leaves FHB as the only ones left able to buy.

I do not know Fitz. I had assumed there was a high level Labour party policy committee that had it all sorted out.

They seem to need some help.... What did you think of my article?

No NZ government cares less about housing
Most MPs have investments in rental properties usually through trusts
It is not in their interests to reduce demand for housing & rental accommodation
Wake up kiwis you are not seeing anything but talk & tinkering

Yes looks that way.
Labour are disappointingly timid.

Hard for National to accept that they are not in power and actually other political parties are making the right noise that Kiwis want.

National and its leaders afe frastruated as ade not able finda fault as most of it is their creation and Labour is doing what government is suppose ro do instead of just managing profit and loss account and that too in favour of their elite friends in NZ and OVERSEAS.

Now is accepted that NZ has become a toy of........ NZ news yesterdsay about US concern of removing NZ from Five Eye is not surprissing.

Money fron overseas has corrupt most.

That reads like an auto translation of Russian AliExpress feedback.

Only 2 S in surprising
Yeterdsay is Yesterday
Five eye is Five eyes
Is this person comrade KGB ?

.

That autocorrect bug may be spreading, (because translating apps at least use a dictionary). But that is almost acceptable now (the bug dockets have been open for years and you can bet they are not a priority over useless flashy features like reduced battery life & sans headphone jacks).

Interesting that no one is upset that our current trajectory is to be like Argentina in about 15 years times, by destroying our successful and well paying Oil and Gas industry. Gas is a wonderful clean burning fuel, we could have warm dry centrally heated houses in winter. How expensive do we want electricity to be? Will we have to burn lignite in the future? What about well paying jobs in the regions?

We can easily survive without oil and gas production. I don’t see how that decision would ever lead to a situation like argentina.

No, I don't think the Argentines saw where they were headed, or indeed the Venezualans either. Or for that matter the Germans who were forced to burn lignite, or the silly, wishy washy wet Brits who were forced to buy Russian gas a few weeks ago.

Did people see Bridges 9% in the preferred prime minister rating in the latest poll? Heaps of speculation on TV3 about Crusher.

Haven’t seen the poll but it doesn’t surprise me. In the vapid world of politics it’s all about presence and his diction kills his ability to get his message across to core voters more than Taxinda’s addition of a ‘k’ to something, which probably goes right over the head of her acolytes. Next candidate please.

National sure are talented at burning all their bridges.

Most people under 40 hate National because of housing and immigration. The boomers are dying off.

Challenges ahead for team sellout.

General dearth of political talent all round it seems.

Not so fast .. it will be a while before boomers die out ( sorry to disappoint) . In the meanwhile the younger left leaning people mature ( most of them do , at least .. ) - guess what happens to their political views ?

If National miss 2020 due to the mistake of putting Soimon No Bridges in charge then by 2023 the boomer herd will be thinned.

That may have been the case in the past, but the under 40s have had generational war waged on them by National. It won't be forgotten or forgiven.

The oldest boomer will be 77 in 2023 so plenty of years yet to go until they start to go in numbers. The ones that do cark it will pass mortgage free homes onto their children. You can bet that those inheriting those properties won’t be be rushing to vote for a government that will tax them for being asset owners.

Still running around like chicken little pushing the "Taxinda" narrative are you?

Spending the kids inheritance is the boomer motto. It's only crumbs for the next generation.

Maybe Nick Smith will make a run for 2023 and save National from oblivion.

Except that isn't true Paahaas, they become more conservative compared to the younger liberal generation, but remain more left-leaning than their right-wing generational counterparts.

I consider myself a liberal and I'm having discussions with my kids about gender fluidity/realignment, which quite frankly flummoxes me, I'm not against it but I'm of the opinion that you need to be an adult to make those decisions fully, my kids think I'm some sort of fascist and are perfectly content with the idea that people can make those decisions at school age and I mean junior/intermediate school age.

Too true the old: win lotto, accrue assets, become conservative effect.

i watched question time, and sorry but TM brought it on by his giving and taking questions, it was a dumb idea and he should have fessed up and canned it when it turned south.
they way national carried on was also as bad and he should have just kicked people out as needed to restore order
as for the speaker being impartial , please apart from lockwood smith (who was moved on by key so he didnt have to answer questions) i can not think of one of the last 20 years that was not biased towards their party or leader, some were so bad like carter and Wilson that it became a farce at question time with non answers and government ministers spending all there time slanging political points.

Government creates housing crisis. People demand More Government.

Its quite simple , if that fool Mallard continues to protect the Government from criticism by not allowing robust debate, the entire opposition should simply get up and walk out of the House, and leave the Coalition of the Losers to sit and play with themselves.

Its early days in this chaotic administration , and National can afford the walk-out , to put a peg in the ground over this issue

robust debate? Please... We aren't quite at the level of south Koreas' parliament (i think it was theirs, might be taiwan?) where MPs are throwing punches at each other, but the few times i have bothered to tune into parliament TV I remember thinking I've seen more reasoned debate over who gets the last pie in high school tuckshop. Question time is waste of MPs time for cheap point scoring. Makes this place look civilised.

dear god, say it's not so... shit your right there. Even when dry bills come up that almost no media tunes into, e.g. plumbers and gasfitters bill, there is the school yard name calling & heckles treatment.