Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Inquiries, part II

United Future has published its proposed terms of reference for an inquiry into the Treaty and constitutional issues. Read them here.

First thoughts: this is rather broad, and covers a mix of high-level meta issues and low-level minutiae - everything from a written constitution, republicanism and the Treaty to what our national day should be. Because these questions are so interdependent, and because there are multiple consistent sets of answers, it is probably best to deal with them in two seperate, sequential inquiries - the first into the Treaty, its role and its principles, and the second into republicanism, a written constitution, and justiciability. Seperate, because these really are two completely different areas of inquiry; sequential, because the Treaty is the foundation of our current constitution - our answers to other constitutional questions are going to be strongly influenced by our views on its role and principles. Waitangi day and the Maori seats are very much subsidiary questions rather than fundamental ones, and probably shouldn't be mixed in with the main process (too much of a distraction, for a start).

Anyway, there's some good blog fodder there. Maybe I'll do some posts about the individual questions... that is, if someone else doesn't beat me to it...