One of the advantages of the blogosphere is that it can provide a platform for people with specialist knowledge to disseminate it to a wider audiance, so informing public debate. Over on Liberation, Bryce Edwards is doing exactly that, with a lengthy series on Debunking myths about party finance in NZ, based on his 2003 PhD thesis Political Parties in New Zealand: A Study of Ideological and Organisational Transformation (available from Canterbury uni library, for anyone really interested).
- Myth 1: Enormous business donations in NZ politics
- Myth 2: Corporate funding doesn't go to the Labour Party
- Myth 3: Corporate parties like Act can buy their way into power
- Myth 4: Poor parties like the Alliance cannot succeed in politics
- Myth 5: Academic studies show money makes a big difference in politics
- Myth 6: Greater party finance means more votes
- Myth 7: Huge amounts of money are spent by political parties
- Myth 8: The Labour Party is dependent on union money
- Myth 9: Regulating political activity is effective
- Myth 10: NZ parties are not state funded
- Myth 11: Parliamentary resources are not routinely used for party political purposes
While the post titles may not give much comfort to those of us wanting to reform the system, there's definitely food for thought there.