Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Mt Albert: Cooperating, competing and carpooling

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  • mark taslov, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    She’s a senior Labour MP and she’s still in her mid-30s

    If I had to pick someone from the Labour camp based on current form I’d go with Phil Twyford sans jingoism.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report

  • Hilary Stace, in reply to izogi,

    Speaker is a vital role and Trevor would be excellent at it. We need some senior MPs as they have extensive institutional knowledge and can mentor newer MPs.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3229 posts Report

  • mark taslov,

    as well as suggesting a preference for Ardern was “ageist”, King added it was “sexist”.

    Which it absolutely is, with or without the paternalistic parenthetical quotation marks.

    Little was asked about that prospect at Ardern’s victory party last night and said there was “no vacancy” and he wasn’t “planning any changes”.

    Today, he repeated that statement, and added, “I’m not thinking about it. Don’t expect any change”.

    I Need A Fast And Rugged Midlife Crisis Car! What Should I Buy?

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report

  • izogi, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    Do you think he helps Labour get elected, though? Unless Labour's actually forming a government, having someone who'd be an excellent Speaker doesn't seem like a priority to me. Voters seem to care about who might be PM, or in charge of the Finance portfolio, but as far as I can tell from the last few years, they don't seem to care much about the person who's controlling the House. There must be a plan for him not being available unexpectedly anyway, and in a room full of politicians is there really nobody who'd make a good substitute?

    Also what's the advantage in being elected himself in order to mentor other new MPs? The Labour Party could presumably still keep him on a payroll somehow if that were needed, couldn't it?

    I was really just meaning to use him as an example, and perhaps his continued candidacy is well worthwhile, but I'm struggling to see what the benefit is of keeping him on the list if it's going to deny the ability of someone else to establish themselves, and who'd be far more likely to be part of Labour's long term future.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 1142 posts Report

  • Tom Semmens,

    Life is journey which includes some unpleasant realities. Baby boomers and Generation Xer’s are guilty of clinging on far past their use by dates. In life you are relevant, then experienced, then wise, then past it. The trick is to know when you enter each phase and accept the process with grace and, perhaps, not a little relief and pride when you realise the burden of fighting your good fight is in the safe hands of a younger generation.

    In an aging world where the young are in an often enforced prolonged adolescence it is easy to remember that once being 20 was old enough to lead seven men in a lumbering four engine bomber at night over a hostile Germany with no modern navigation aids.

    Yes, there is an agism abroad – an agism that says age isn’t relevant not because you can still do the job, but as an excuse for not letting go, which is a category I would put Annette King in. Any politician whose best days are behind them need to go immediately, and make way for a young thruster with the energy and enthusiasm they now lack.

    There are far to many old people in parliament. Jacinda is just 35. She is entering that phase of her life where she will harness both still youthful energy with an ability to adapt and learn, while having the confidence that comes with a decade of experience.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2217 posts Report

  • Hilary Stace, in reply to izogi,

    I disagree that there are too many old people in parliament. Not enough diversity of ages, backgrounds and expertise is more accurate. Where are our 24% of MPs identifying as disabled? Why haven’t we ever had an MP with Down Syndrome?

    Regarding Trevor and age specifically, he has stepped down from his electorate seat to make way for another impressive young woman, Ginny Anderson, who almost toppled Peter Dunne last year, and who is campaigning vigorously in Hutt South, helped and supported by Trevor. Trevor is not even old yet, not in Gold Card territory. Annette King is almost 70 but still a very effective electorate and parliamentary MP. Green MP Catherine Delahunty (the same age as Trevor) will step down from the list this year while mentoring the very young Jack Macdonald (among others) into a role as a future Green MP.

    We need people across the age range in Parliament. A Speaker plays a vital role in a democratically functioning parliament in the 3 years between elections, and someone with lots of parliamentary experience is valuable.

    Educational research has shown that a diverse classroom is good for all students, as is a diverse caucus. I think my point is that we need to see people in parliament who reflect our population. And older members mentoring and encouraging younger ones is healthy, not ageist.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3229 posts Report

  • mark taslov, in reply to Tom Semmens,

    "in the safe hands of a younger generation"

    That certainly allays any lingering concerns I might have had.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Hilary Stace,

    I disagree that there are too many old people in parliament.

    Graph shows too many middle-aged to be directly representative (though I'd expect that because of the nature of the role). Not enough other diversity yet, for sure.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Hilary Stace,

    By old I mean over 65. Not many of those in parliament, yet lots of voters. The Gold Card, National Superannuation beneficiary, aged care etc, group need representation - you could argue.

    Wgtn • Since Jun 2008 • 3229 posts Report

  • Ben Austin,

    Assuming Labour holds Rongotai, doesn't this make Little's life a little easier? He's now got more wriggle room on his List

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 1027 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Ben Austin,

    If Lab do not lift their party vote, list places will be scant anyway (including his).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

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