Sunday, May 29, 2005



Dead, white and male

That's the National Party list in a nutshell. One woman in the top ten, four in the top 20, and (by my count) 13 overall, with a disproportionate number in the last 5 candidates. You'd almost think they were having trouble attracting women as candidates after Brash's treatment of Katherine Rich - and that they did not value the votes of women.

It's the same story with Maori candidates - around three four out of 65 - and with those of other ethnicities and cultures. This list does not look like New Zealand; instead, it looks like the same old boy's club that National has always represented, with a few grudging concessions to the modern world. With this list, National has made it clear that they are not "a party for all New Zealanders"; instead they are just a niche interest group for rich old men.

Update: Corrected number of Maori candidates after reading DPF's post.

6 comments:

Thats quite unfair IS - as David Farrar points out "it is the effective list which matters. Of the top ten list candidates who are going to be List MPs, four are women."

And as we know, Ashraf Choudhary is a very good reason why people should not become MPs solely on ethnicity.

Posted by Aaron Bhatnagar : 5/29/2005 06:20:00 PM

usual National party line will be "we take candiates on quality not ethicity". Well fine, but why are there not quality women candiates, quality Maori candiates, quality Pacific Island candiates etc.?
Because National is just not attractive to those people, they are attractive to white males.
The effective list doesn't stick with me. Surely there should also be women, Maori, etc. standing in electorates who will win.

Posted by Greg Stephens : 5/29/2005 07:41:00 PM

Well Greg...From the response of the New Zealand public regarding Brashs Orewa one speech, i would say the majority of Kiwis would also say "we vote for candidates on quality not ethicity".
What about you?

Posted by Sector 7G : 5/29/2005 07:57:00 PM

Which, if you turn that around, tells you that National doesn't give winnable electorate seats to women either.

I am not saying that candidates should be selected on their gender or ethnicity - but I'd expect that a supposedly mainstream party, one which claims to represent all New Zealanders (to the extent that they refuse to stand candidates in the Maori seats) to be able to attract sufficient candidates from all parts of our society to be able to ensure that it can put up a good mixture of decent candidates on its list. But the fact is that National either doesn't attract many people other than dead white males - or that it does not appoint them. Either should be a worry.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 5/29/2005 08:35:00 PM

I think in terms of ethnicity we would be a bit low on asian MPs, a little high on maori MPs, possibly a bit low on polynesians and not sure regarding white people. (right?)

I think if the maori party started putting forward asian candidates that might just about fix it.

Posted by Genius : 5/29/2005 08:37:00 PM

Are the female of the white species considered dead as well?

Posted by Lucyna : 5/29/2005 11:07:00 PM