Minister of Broadcasting becomes Minister of Repeats
Flawless speech - pity it's the wrong one
Revenue Minister Peter Dunne has put his hand up over an embarrassing blunder by a senior National MP. Broadcasting Minister Jonathan Coleman last night delivered a flawless speech for the first reading of the Taxation (International Investment and Remedial Matters) Bill - trouble is it was the wrong speech. It was one Mr Dunne had delivered on July 23, 2008, on the Taxation, International Taxation, Life Insurance and Remedial Matters Bill. Opposition MPs tried to alert Mr Coleman to his blunder but he continued undeterred.
I'm still laughing at how Coleman managed to read a speech already given, but doesn't it concern anyone that no one is actually reading these speeches before they are read? The speed of how legislation can be rammed through Parliament makes NZ one of the easiest places to pass law, this is something Chris Hipkins has blogged about over at Red Alert.
National have spent more time ramming law through under a misuse of urgency than any other Government in recent political history, indeed you would need to go back to Roger Douglas's love sonnets to Milton Friedman to find an equal. That means no public submission and no select committees, John Key has overseen the largest wholesale dismantling of democratic oversight with 35% of time spent last year under urgency. NZers would know this if TVNZ didn't spend so much time covering the death of a psychic octopus.
Watching the Minister of Broadcasting blunder through with a repeat speech is a reminder of how easy it is to abuse our legislative process and how unaware the actors in the pretense of democracy seem to have of their own lines.