March 2014

Election Year

Written by David Cunliffe

New Zealand

My parents, who will likely have to keep working well into old age, did get their vindication when I accumulated enough cultural capital through my more poorlypaid, but honourable pursuits to get a few glowing profiles in the mainstream media. And that’s part of the disease that keeps American capitalism going.

The next New Zealand general election will be held to determine the membership of the 51st New Zealand Parliament. It is predicted to take place sometime in September 2014.

The two main political parties are: National and Labour

The Constitution Act 1986 requires new parliamentary elections every three years.

In the 2008 election, the Labour Party lost to National, and the government was succeeded by the National Party led by John Key as Prime Minister.

At the 26 November 2011 general election, National gained 47.31% of the party vote, the highest percentage gained by any political party since MMP was introduced, helped by a lower voter turnout and the misfortunes of its traditional support parties

It’s not that  everyone can be successful; it’s that anyone can be successful.

The National Party

The New Zealand National Party is a centre-right New Zealand political party, and one of the two major parties in New Zealand politics.

John Key—Centre Right

John Key is the Prime Minister of New Zealand and leader of the National Party

A recent article in the National Business Review commented that: “the government, and Mr Key’s personal ratings, remain high.”

Key entered the New Zealand Parliament representing the Auckland electorate of Helensville as one of the few new National members of parliament in the election of 2002 following National’s significant defeat of that year. He has held the seat since then. In 2004, he was appointed Finance Spokesman for National and eventually succeeded Don Brash as the National Party leader in 2006. After two years as Leader of the Opposition, Key led his party to victory in both the November 2008 and the November 2011 general elections. (Wikipedia)

The Labour Party

The New Zealand Labour Party is a social-democratic political party in New Zealand, and one of the two major parties in New Zealand politics.

Social democracy is a political ideology that officially has as its goal the establishment of democratic socialism through reformist and gradualist methods. Alternatively, social democracy is defined as a policy regime involving a universal welfare state and collective bargaining schemes within the framework of a capitalist economy.

The Labour Party was founded as the political arm of the trade union movement. While the formal ties between unions and the party have dwindled, there are still six unions that are directly affiliated to the party and pay affiliation fees.

Labour lost power when it was defeated by the National Party in the 2008 general election.

David Cunliffe

David Cunliffe is a New Zealand politician and leader of the New Zealand Labour Party. He was elected leader on 15 September 2013 following David Shearer’s departure from the leadership. He is also the sitting member of parliament for New Lynn, West Auckland.

If you are bored and disgusted by politics and don’t bother to vote, you are in effect voting for the entrenched Establishments of the two major parties, who please rest assured are not dumb, and who are keenly aware that it is in their interests to keep you disgusted and bored and cynical and to give you every possible reason to stay at home doing onehitters and watching TV on voting day. By all means stay home if you want, but don’t bullshit yourself that you’re not voting. In reality, there is no such thing as not voting: you either vote by voting, or you vote by staying home and tacitly doubling the value of some Diehard’s vote.

- David Foster Wallace