Monday, July 09, 2018


The Opportunities Party has decided not to contest the 2020 election, and has asked the Electoral Commission to deregister it. Officially, they've recognised the reality that their policies just aren't popular enough, but Morgan couldn't do that without taking the opportunity to heap scorn on voters:

“The voting public demonstrated that best practice, evidence-informed policy is not of significant concern when deciding elections. When 20% of the vote moves in 48 hours simply on the back of a change of leader, with no improvement at all in policy being offered, what makes the New Zealand voter tick is clear.”

Hear that? We're all irrational and unworthy of Morgan's genius, so he's taking his ball and going home. Which I think demonstrates the problem with TOP in a nutshell: its hard to win the support of voters while displaying such utter contempt for us. And its hard to win elections when you clearly have no idea how politics works. Because despite what the self-proclaimed uber-rational TOP-men purport, politics is not just about policy. Among other things, its also about trust and credibility. And the reason Labour's vote shifted so dramatically simply with a change in leader was because Labour got a leader people could believe in, someone people could trust to do what Labour said it would do, and trust to do what a Labour party ought to do in response to all the events that will inevitably pop up over a three year term. No-one trusted the faceless Daves. And about the only thing you could ever trust TOP to do was for Morgan to throw a temper-tantrum while slagging off everyone who didn't agree absolutely with him. What's surprising is that 2.4% of voters went along with such an abusive relationship.

But while its clear that TOP has died a natural death, it means we'll be down to only 12 registered political parties (and only 5 in Parliament). Which isn't a lot of options for voters to choose from. One way of measuring the health of a democracy is by the number of registered political parties. And on that metric, ours seems to be in slow decline.