RNZ: On the Inside OPINION: Flag failure – Where did it go wrong?
By Toby Morris
Well, that’s that. The votes are counted and at last the shambolic flag saga is finally over, banished to eternal life as a series of pub quiz trivia questions. An embarrassing phase best forgotten like a national bad haircut.
As much as I’ve always wanted a change, in the end I think we made the right choice. So why do I feel so rotten?
I had a bad feeling about it from the start, and I wasn’t alone. This time last year, anyone who has ever worked on any kind of corporate creative brief took one look at the chosen panel and their proposed process and saw that it would result in a mediocre, safe choice. It was creativity by committee, with no designers involved, and a process that allowed no room for development or refinement.
So we expected the worst, but like George W Bush said, we ‘misunderestimated’ them. Things went from worst to ‘worster’ as they lurched from one disastrous step to another. An inane and vague campaign to engage people about what they stood for led to the saddest road trip ever as the panel toured the country for public meetings with record low turnouts. No one was interested.
By the time the public was able to submit entries, the mood became more evident…. In large numbers, we were treating the flag process as a huge joke. Read more + Cartoons
Prime Minister John Key has warned if people vote against changing the flag they will not get another chance until New Zealand becomes a republic.
### radionz.co.nz Updated at 12:46 pm today
RNZ News Has the PM mistaken himself for a flag?
By Finlay Macdonald
OPINION: To borrow a title from the late, great Oliver Sacks, we appear to have a prime minister who mistook himself for a flag.
John Key is now arguing that a vote against the silver fern flag in the March referendum is really a vote against him. He is echoing those commentators who have already tried to depict opposition to a new flag as simply anti-Key sentiment in red, white and blue drag.
The flag debate, they claim, has been “politicised” by the Left out of bitterness and spite. Aside from their own absurd partisan assumptions, what those arguments can never address is the ideologically diverse nature of so much opposition to the Lockwood flag.
How else to explain the informal alliance of lifelong republicans and ageing anti-establishment boomers with monarchists and RSA traditionalists? If anything unites these camps it seems less likely to be a shared loathing of the prime minister than a nose for what you might call a false dichotomy – an unnecessary choice between two inadequate options.
Because you can say a lot of bad things about the alternative flag, but probably the worst is that it makes the current flag look good. Read more
It was outside the panel’s remit to consider criticism of the process or support for the current flag……..
### ODT Online Fri, 13 Nov 2015 Readers support Mallard in flag debate
Readers have weighed in to support claims by Trevor Mallard the flag referendum process is “total spin”, following analysis showing feedback from thousands of people critical of the process had been ignored by the flag consideration panel. Analysis published today on new data platform ‘Herald Insights’ shows official reports published by the flag panel had ignored thousands of public submissions – nearly a third of total feedback – that were critical of the process or supportive of retaining the current flag. Read more
The flag of New Zealand is a defaced Blue Ensign with the Union Flag in the canton, and four red stars with white borders to the right. The stars represent the constellation of Crux, the Southern Cross. More at Wikipedia.
### ODT Online Fri, 27 Feb 2015 Chin hoping for ‘huge interest’ in flag debate
By Chris Morris
Mr Chin (73), Dunedin mayor from 2004-10, was yesterday named with 11 others – including prominent New Zealand businessmen, academics, sportsmen and military figures – to sit on the Flag Consideration Panel. Mr Chin (73), Dunedin mayor from 2004-10, was yesterday named with 11 others – including prominent New Zealand businessmen, academics, sportsmen and military figures – to sit on the Flag Consideration Panel. Mr Chin told the Otago Daily Times he was looking forward to the role and hoped public interest in the debate would be “huge”. Read more
● Binding referendum for NZ flag design.
● No binding referendum for sending NZ troops to Iraq.
DON’T MOVE. DON’T ACCEPT THE MARKET RESERVE. KEEP THE PROTEST CENTRAL AND HIGHLY VISIBLE . . . WHILE DUNEDIN CITY COUNCILLORS CONTINUE TO SELL OUR FUTURE DOWN THE TUBES.
### ODT Online Fri, 21 Oct 2011 Occupy protesters offered other site
By David Loughrey
Protesters in the Octagon have been offered an alternative site at the Market Reserve in Dunedin, a move Mayor Dave Cull said was designed to return the Octagon to all city residents. Mr Cull last night said council chief executive Paul Orders had organised a staff member to pass on the message to the group yesterday afternoon. The protesters had been invited to the council today to speak to Mr Orders, and give their response. Read more
### ODT Online Wed, 19 Oct 2011
Opinion Campers strike a common chord
By Simon Cunliffe
Brrrrr! Not great weather for camping. It’ll soon be a bog up there in the Octagon – where the good folk of the “Occupy Dunedin” movement have parked their tents. Can’t imagine they’ll want to stay long in this sort of weather but one or two of them seem determined to remain. There’s been a bit of a squabble over statutes governing occupation of the site. It’s been said a 19th-century bylaw allowing immigrants en route to the Central Otago goldfields to squat temporarily in the city centre is still in force. A neat irony that: it’s a gold rush of a different kind this mob have set up shop to condemn. Their focus is corporate greed, social inequality, free-market economics and environmental issues, much of which they would undoubtedly argue arises from the unfettered accumulation of the aforementioned “gold”. And, interestingly, it’s an echo that has been witnessed in large-scale demonstrations across the world. Read more
• Simon Cunliffe is deputy editor (news) at the Otago Daily Times.
### ODT Online Wed, 19 Oct 2011 Spirit of protest not dampened by rain
By John Lewis
Anti-capitalism protesters are yet to decide how long they intend to stay in the Octagon, but the Dunedin City Council is going out of its way not to put pressure on the group to respond to its request for a timeline. Read more
### ODT Online Wed, 19 Oct 2011
Opinion Importance of sharing our common wealth forgotten
By Alison MacTavish
The Rugby World Cup has predictably given rise to plenty of discussions about whether rugby is our national religion, or about its importance to our national identity. Election proposals that run counter to the more fundamental values of being a New Zealander, however, have attracted far less discussion.
John Key and his Government have said they will take re-election as a mandate for selling our assets. With most New Zealanders reportedly against asset sales, but with the National Party odds on to form the next government, the danger is that a vote for the National Party will be a vote for asset sales. And, of course, the National Government prefers to focus on how we can divvy up the spoils, rather than discussing the fundamental social justice issue.