New Zealand Prime minister takes a personal hit on an impossible-to-police moral policy
A high-minded and even higher profile policy against harassment and bullying has turned New Zealand’s Parliament House into a courthouse-cum -district attorney’s office.
It is filled with reviews, investigative panels, and inquiries and with the lawyers required to implement them.
All this can be sheeted home to the Labour-led governing coalition’s determination to settle bullying, harassment, and aggression claims internally as an alternative to referring them to the police.
Complainants, automatically described as “victims” or “survivors” in Labour coalition-speak, are equally wary because of the relationship between the government and the police.
Nobody has yet understood that Roman law as practised in Scotland is designed to cope with this problem
The Scots procurator fiscal has the discretion to pursue alternatives free from political interference.
The procurator fiscal in Scotland is answerable to neither the police nor the government, but to the judiciary.
The fiscal as this office holder is known decides if there is a case to answer.
The role of the fiscal would have sidestepped the current bush-lawyering transitioning into an expanding bush fire.
This has been fed by a series of incidents since the Labour coalition took office.
The extent of the current frenzy can be gauged by the fact that it precipitated the resignation of the president of the Labour Party, an organisational figure critical to the Labour coalition’s victory in 2017 and as such an architect of the party’s successful positioning as the nation’s conscience.
This moral guardianship strategy soared globally as “#WeToo” when it was proclaimed to the United Nations general assembly.
This whole aura of purity of intention now became indissolubly blended with the persona of New Zealand’s prime minister, the youthful Jacinda Ardern (pictured).
She has become the lightning rod for all the accusations of moral slippage, human frailty, and backsliding that are part of the current charge and counter charges of the who-knew-what-and-when variety.
In the past the distaff section of the media especially has treated Ms Ardern and her lofty ideals with the sincerity with which they were uttered. No longer
There is no explanation of how exactly how Miss Ardern can be expected to track the situational ethics of the thousands of people who can claim affiliation with the Labour Party and the parliamentary precinct
This especially applies in the context of the excitable nature of people who tend to be drawn in the first place to politics.
New Zealand, quite a sparsely populated country, has six law schools, and thus lawyers abound.
Lawyers’ first duty is to the law.
In its parliamentary context the law currently is looking silly, if only because so many people who should know better are doing end runs around it.
New Zealand was substantially founded by Scots immigrants.
A moral crusade which is what we are talking about here is necessarily driven by a fervour which in turns becomes hysteria on the stony path toward the grail of perfection.
New Zealand is prone to moral movements which quickly infuse the body politic, especially if there is international applause.
Handled deftly such movements will compensate for failures in other and applied conventional policies.
These movements are often associated with individuals who will assume a correspondingly saintly aura.
This one has been incarnated by the prime minister.
The accounting lesson has been learned from Australia
Don’t tell anyone. But New Zealand’s Labour coalition is tooling up for the world’s first successful climate change election which means winning it.
The lesson has been learned from Australia’s all-party attempts to do the same thing.
The lesson learned is this.
Do not price the components costs of a single-issue climate change election because if you do this then the central policy of climate change will be lost in a welter of arguments mainly about the cost to the taxpayers.
Australia recently emerged from its most recent and fourth climate change general election and the proponent, on this occasion Labour, lost its sure-fire projected win doused and extinguished as it was in a tsunami of costings.
In New Zealand, in contrast, next year’s climate change general election, will steer clear of clogging and distracting accounting minutiae and instead will rely either implicitly or explicitly, it is still too early to tell, on the constellation of other issues attendant upon it.
The oil and gas embargo in New Zealand’s most prosperous province, Taranaki, emboldened the Labour-led coalition.
Ruthlessly and suddenly imposed on the heels of its general election win, the coalition in its bid to lock in its Green Party component, can justifiably hug itself and say to itself “we got away with it!”
Acquiescent and quiescent the newspaper chains have happily published glowing articles from government agencies to the effect that things like craft breweries and pastry shops will fill the vacuum in Taranaki left by the energy industry, oil and gas version.
Climate change in Australia has consistently as an election clincher failed because its proponents with names such as Gillard, Rudd, Turnbull, and Shorten allowed their talisman to dissolve into accounting disarray.
The real-life debits gave the electorate the impression of exceeding the more abstract credits.
Premier Malcolm Turnbull demonstrated that devotion and singularity of purpose are not enough to bring about a successful climate change election.
In various recent times he lost a general election in this belief and also the leadership of the Australian Liberal Party.
If devotion, singularity of purpose and even sincerity cannot swing a successful climate change election then what will?
In Australia cooler heads suggest that the nation use its gigantic reserves of uranium to create nuclear energy.
In New Zealand with its still untapped reserves of hydro power, it is suggested that more dams are constructed.
To the climatists this kind of argument has as much appeal as a cup of baby’s blood.
So the Labour coalition knows that it needs to stick relentlessly to the central policy, the climate change branding, which in being branded needs no explanation and certainly no apologies.
The Labour-led coalition has been allowed to walk away from its operational policies such as the mass house construction scheme and also the capital gains tax plan.
It correctly sees its strength now as a moral one blended with empathy with an overlay of UN-style global conscience, all of which anyway sound rather phony emanating from anyone in the National Party.
A climate change election with all its virtuous subsidiary policies over for example transport, and nutrition will consistently keep the Labour coalition on the moral high ground.
The aim is to keep the National Party on the dark and nasty boggy ground below.
Here, the planning goes, the National opposition, not exactly brimming with charisma in the first place, will tie itself in knots and public disdain over the spoiling what-will-it-all-cost numbers?
And as a concurrent and especially unprofitable diversionary sideline, the decimal points and fractions of the computer-modelled climate change narrative. `
This pending climate change election will tell us that there is no Plan B.
Removing the opposition’s Plan B, the accounting one, features the simplicity so essential to success.