Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Stand for... Something

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  • Bart Janssen, in reply to George Darroch,

    Of all the designs submitted so far, this is the one that most compels me: “Matariki at midnight”.

    Except for me this is always The Pleiades and don't feel really New Zealand. But that is probably just me.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Penny Ashton,

    I just want to say I am disappointed in these comments. Nothing but polite, erudite, intelligent discussion.

    Thems fighting words!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    It’s hard to see how we could get a flag that completely ignores that NZ is currently a constitutional monarchy under the Brits. Which is why it shouldn’t really have been done in advance of some kind of independence move. But changing the flag is a small job involving graphic design and lots of talk about patriotism, whereas becoming a republic is a huge change that we are probably too wussy for at the moment.

    So what we get is a debate about how to represent what we are, rather than a debate about what we want to be. So we either get a flag packed with symbolism that satisfies some and leaves out a lot of others, or we get something that’s really abstract, probably nature based, and symbolizes pretty much nothing. I think at this point I’d favor the second option. Ferns, koru, kiwi, stars, clouds, the island shapes, large bands of primary colors etc. At least it won’t have to be redone later.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • dcrobertson01, in reply to Steve Curtis,

    Wow - who is saying that? Who has even suggested that? Anybody? No. You just want imply anybody who thinks we should be proud of our country wants to go back to the 50's.

    The more I have seen of the world, the more I think we should be proud of what our country has done. We shouldn't try to hide all the stuff we got wrong either, but remember and fix what we can.

    I know I wasn't personally responsible for our democratic system and universal suffrage, but I did play a part in getting MMP, and without the former, we could not have the latter.

    I don't see why we can't be proud of good things our country has done. Seems a bit like those people who, if you commiserate with their poor fortune by saying sorry, reply 'why? it wasn't your fault'. No - it wasn't, but that does not make me indifferent.

    We're all proud of things we don't have a lot of control over. We feel loyalty to schools we no longer attend and fund raise so our children's schools can build things after our children leave. We're proud when a New Zealand author wins a prize, or the Hollywood financed film of a British book set in a mythical world does well overseas, or when someone whose parents brought her to New Zealand when she was five is the best in the world at knocking a ball into a hole with a stick.

    None of it makes sense. Well, with the amount of state funding that goes into stuff like that, I guess we are a bit responsible :-)

    To argue we shouldn’t is to argue we are rational - good luck with that.

    BTW "It ought to be deeply impressed on the minds of all who have voices in this national deliberation, that no man can deserve a seat in parliament, who is not a patriot. No other man will protect our rights: no other man can merit our confidence." Samuel Johnson. Pre feminism, obviously.
    http://www.samueljohnson.com/thepatriot.html

    Since Feb 2014 • 5 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    The above is a bizarre batshit crazy scenario, but honestly is it more bizarre than using Slater to tar your opponents?

    I'm behind your scenario 100% but then you also know I'm probably batshit crazy meself. Still, sounds textbook to me. Once this Govt. started to unravel, everything else has fallen into line. Hager cemented many of my views as well. I don't think he is batshit crazy.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    I find it a pity that the Kiwi became the iconic bird of NZ. I like Tuis better. At least we actually see and hear Tuis around the place. Being black and white works better on a flag, too.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Penny Ashton,

    I just want to say I am disappointed in these comments. Nothing but polite, erudite, intelligent discussion. What the fuck is the internet coming to.

    Kiwibog is thataway >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2933 posts Report Reply

  • st ephen, in reply to Russell Brown,

    That such a conversation could simply be accepted in the spirit in which it was uttered is something to be bloody proud of.

    Unfortunately it's the sort of thing that the Dirty Politics crew file away for later use. And if you're a public health, climate change or environmental researcher you can eventually expect your employer to be hit with a formal complaint and you may even be on the receiving end of an official reprimand. But sure - if you're already considered an outlier by National's Black Ops standards you have nothing further to worry about.
    We can be proud of how we were - not so much of what we've become.

    dunedin • Since Jul 2008 • 254 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    The above is a bizarre batshit crazy scenario, but honestly is it more bizarre than using Slater to tar your opponents?

    I don't think it's that batshit crazy at all.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2933 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to nzlemming,

    Well, and then:
    \/
    \/
    \/
    \/
    \/
    \/
    ...<until you reach the sludge>
    Then it's > \/ < /\ > \/ < /\ ....forever.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Jeremy Andrew, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Of all the designs submitted so far, this is the one that most compels me: “Matariki at midnight”.Except for me this is always The Pleiades and don’t feel really New Zealand. But that is probably just me.

    But we'll be a shoo-in for sponsorship by Subaru!

    Hamiltron - City of the F… • Since Nov 2006 • 900 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Telfar Barnard, in reply to BenWilson,

    It’s hard to see how we could get a flag that completely ignores that NZ is currently a constitutional monarchy under the Brits.

    When I look down the list of Commonwealth members, the only other countries that still retain the Union Jack as part of their flags are Australia, Fiji and Tuvalu (and of course the UK). Of the others, I can't in any way tell from their flags which ones are still constitutional monarchies under the Brits (lots of them), and which ones are republics (some of them). So I'm not really seeing the necessity of recognising the Brits on our flag at all.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 585 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    Oh and just to point out that I agree with Craig

    While I am not that invested in a new flag and while I might prefer money be spent elsewhere and even if it is some weird right wing plot ...

    this could be turned into something good. We could either affirm that we all quite like the connection with England and our history OR we could create a new flag the makes people happy in some way.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • Katharine Moody, in reply to George Darroch,

    Gee, that is a beautiful concept - inspiring and thoughtful. I agree - this process is highly unlikely to get us there.

    Wellington • Since Sep 2014 • 798 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    “The laser beam projects a powerful image of New Zealand. I believe my design is so powerful it does not need to be discussed.”

    Not everyone is taking it seriously, the Independent notes.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Redoing post....bother

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1590 posts Report Reply

  • william blake, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    I love the Pleiades as a symbol of unity. It spends six months of the year in the Northern sky and the other six in the South. Matariki is our own new year.

    It is also very Kiwi by being quite small but also quite distinct in the cosmos and no one (pre Hubble) can agree on how many stars make up the constellation.

    Since Mar 2010 • 380 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Lucy Telfar Barnard,

    So I’m not really seeing the necessity of recognising the Brits on our flag at all.

    True, if 50 other Commonwealth countries can do it, why not us? But I think my point is somewhat made by the noticeable lack of cultural signifiers in a great many of those flags. Most new countries are very much multicultural, so it's a safer choice not to load it up with symbols of the current political and social power structures, which can change, and selective representation in a flag can serve to undermine the appreciation of it, and the whole idea of the national unity that it's meant to stand for.

    Not that I care much. I don't wrap myself in the flag now, and I won't do it in future either. I might wrap myself up in team colors sometimes, but they're a different thing altogether. That said, if it's an actually cool flag...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Flag debates:

    Canada
    South Africa and an article about its designer
    And to show "we are not alone".....
    We could follow an Iraqi idea across the flag maybe......"He nui Hoani"

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1590 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I did quite a bit of thinking about this national character thing for the Great New Zealand Argument book, and one big thing I came up with was an aversion to theory. When New Zealand's social welfare system was established, reformers came from all over the world to hear what we had to say about it – which turned out to be bugger-all. It had just seemed a practical thing to do.

    Mind you, we didn't later think much about the reforms of Rogernomics, for much the same reason.

    I also concluded that we tended to work best at the intersection of practicality and creativity. Historically, we've been the skilled roadies and the great on-tour chefs rather than the rockstars.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22834 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to william blake,

    Attachment

    I love the Pleiades as a symbol of unity. It spends six months of the year in the Northern sky and the other six in the South. Matariki is our own new year.

    But the southern cross is all about the Southern Hemisphere. No messy history from those pesky Greeks. All ours - well except for all the other people who see it :).

    I guess I'm not hating it just that it doesn't feel as "New Zealand" to me as it does for other folks.

    Now if we could get this on the flag

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford, in reply to BenWilson,

    I think at this point I’d favor the second option. Ferns, koru, kiwi, stars, clouds, the island shapes, large bands of primary colors etc. At least it won’t have to be redone later.

    Its also important to have whatever natural icons stylized to symplisity. There will be times, when the flag will need to be hand made.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4414 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    No messy history from those pesky Greeks.

    With key stars named after mythical Greek half-horse, half men :-). There’s no escaping them Greeks. Nor the Romans, if we must have Crux as our symbol. Nor Christianity, for that matter :);)

    ETA: I mean imagine the furore if we chose to have a sickle moon on there.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10653 posts Report Reply

  • Hilary Stace, in reply to Russell Brown,

    That bit about no theory is not quite right. Those old lefties (men and women) who formed the basis of the Labour Party in government had been talking and arguing about a better way for years. There was the Clarion movement out of Scotland that many immigrants brought with them and then the Red Feds, and those anti-conscription activists imprisoned in WW1 probably had a lot of time to talk, and even the WEA discussion groups from the 1920s were a ferment of self-education and ideas. So when they finally got into power it sort of fell into place.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3214 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to steven crawford,

    There will be times, when the flag will need to be hand made.

    Interesting point. But in this age of easy high quality printing maybe a flag with huge gorgeous detail that can be summarized easily.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4458 posts Report Reply

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