Brash: Maori seats referendum a defining issue

It looks as if whether to have a referendum on the Maori electorates will become a defining issue in the post-election negotiations.

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ACT Party responses to Hobson's Pledge questions on race based policies, September 2017.


Do you support the democratic principle that the Government should treat all citizens equally in law, irrespective of ethnicity? (A yes or no answer would be appreciated).


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Use your vote to end National's race based policies


Over the last year, the Hobson’s Pledge Trust has been promoting the message that New Zealanders are one people, with equal rights to live in this land – not two people, Maori and “the rest”, as successive governments have asked us to believe.  Over the last month or so, with the upcoming election in mind, we have been urging people to “use your vote to end National’s race-based policies”.  Not surprisingly, people have asked: how?

First let me explain why voting National won’t end the race-based policies which have been increasingly built into central and local government practice in recent years.

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Affirmative action entrenches race divide

A few weeks ago, The Economist – almost certainly the finest English-language weekly newspaper in the world – carried an editorial and accompanying article describing the consequences of policies designed to improve the lot of Malays in Malaysia, first adopted in 1971 and intended to last for just 20 years.

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Written by a New Zealander of Maori ancestry, a winner in life and in business and a true believer in truth and justice, Casey Costello

One month out from the election……….what have I learned? As spokesperson for Hobson’s Pledge I made a decision to stand up for what I believed rather than sit quietly by. 

With almost a year as a spokesperson I have been astounded by those who claim to represent Maori who consistently attack a message of equality of citizenship. 
So the lessons I have learned:
1. Speaking out for equal rights at law for all citizens regardless of ancestry is somehow criticised as racism


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Is New Zealand’s water up for grabs?

New Zealand is a nation built on equality, and our equality is based on citizenship, not ethnicity, a full-page advert in today’s Sunday Star Times says.

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Don Brash and Dr Michael Bassett discuss the rationale behind Hobson's Pledge, the Treaty and sovereignty

Over recent months, I’ve talked to a number of friends who disagree with what Hobson’s Pledge is trying to achieve.  They have accepted the “current orthodoxy” that Maori chiefs really didn’t cede sovereignty when they signed the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, or perhaps didn’t understand that that was what they were doing; and that because the Treaty created a “partnership” between Maori and the Crown, this entitles the descendants of those who signed the Treaty to some special political status nearly 180 years later. 

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Questions for candidates

Candidates are holding meetings up and down the country. We thought we would put together a few questions to ask your candidates. Go to a meeting and see how many you can get a response on. You may email candidates in your area. Let us know how you get on.

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Marine and Coastal Act's costly shambles will haunt country for decades

Touted by National as offering a durable and expeditious solution to Labour’s Foreshore and Seabed Act, Chris Finlayson’s Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (MACA) has unleashed hundreds of competing claims that will tie the courts up for decades, costing the country tens, if not hundreds of millions of dollars in claimant funding, policy advice and legal fees. 

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Maori seats referendum and other policies

The 2017 election campaign has well and truly started with both the Green Party and New Zealand First launching major policie.

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Don Brash Orewa 2004

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the second occasion on which I have addressed your Club on the last Tuesday of January, and I very much appreciate your invitation. Soon after becoming leader of the National Party, I outlined my five main priorities.

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Profit gloat clashes with tribal tax exemption opposition

Waikato-Tainui would be a bit more guarded in gloating about their “record year of results and growth” if they knew what New Zealanders think about their tax-exempt status, Hobson’s Pledge spokesman Don Brash said today.

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Devoy and discrimination

The “Give Nothing to Racism” anti-discrimination campaign was funded by discriminatory levies payable only by international students and new migrants, The Taxpayers’ Union revealed on Friday.

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Unity is being eroded by division

Recently in the US, at an “Over-population Conference”  in Washington DC, a former  Governor of Colorado Richard D Lamm spoke on the startling subject, how to destroy America. Before he spoke an eminent college professor Victor Hansen Davis talked about his latest book, 'Mexifornia,' explaining how immigration - both legal and illegal was destroying the entire state of California.


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Nats all ‘say’ and no ‘do’ on equal rights

A flyer challenging Prime Minister Bill English’s record on a single standard of citizenship went out to 1.6 million households today. The flyer that calls on everyone to use their vote in this year’s election “to end National’s race-based policies” was distributed by equal rights group Hobson’s Pledge.

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Biculturalism in education

The term "biculturalism" suggests inclusiveness and equality. In practice, "biculturalism" leads to exclusiveness and separatism; it encourages different treatment and different consideration on grounds of ethnicity and it steers our society down the road once travelled by South Africa.

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Goff wants Maori wards plus Maori board

Why on earth would Auckland Mayor Phil Goff favour Maori wards in Auckland, Hobson’s Pledge spokesman Don Brash said today. A bill in the name of Green MP Marama Davidson which would allow councils to create Maori wards without triggering a referendum has been drawn from the ballot.

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Billboards warn voters of forced separatism

Billboards reminding voters how much the National-led Government has bent over backwards to satisfy separatist demands went up in Auckland and Wellington today.

The billboards were erected by Hobson’s Pledge, a group fronted by Auckland business manager Casey Costello and former National Party leader Don Brash to make equality of citizenship a key issue for this election.

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Judd bill to bypass Maori ward referenda before Parliament

A Green Party members bill which would end the right for a referendum should a council want a Maori ward was pulled from the member's ballot today, which means MPs could now vote to change the law. Currently, establishing Maori wards in local government can be put to a referendum while general wards are decided on by council alone.

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There’s More than One Way to Skin a Cat

If we were in any doubt that the education system is a powerful force in national politics and cultural values, the Education Council is obliterating that. New Zealanders (when given the chance) have repeatedly expressed no appetite for constitutional reform, co-goverance, compulsory te reo, or a new flag, so now the activists are taking matters into their own hands to entrench their power over our minds.

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Casey Costello in Nelson

"He iwi tahi tatou". That was the greeting given to each chief by Governor William Hobson upon signing the treaty on February 6, 1840. It translates to “we are now one people”. At this time in New Zealand I don’t think there is a more powerful statement to be made.

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Special coastal rights require explanation

The 150 coastal claims notified over the past week shows that the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 has come back to bite the National Government a few months out from an election, Hobson’s Pledge spokesperson Casey Costello said today.

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Hidesight: Legal wringer turns Treaty inside-out

The total stupidity of the Waitangi Tribunal was full on display last week. I refer, of course, to the finding that Maori re-offending is a Treaty breach. It's bad enough that such reports are written let alone that we taxpayers must fund them.

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Reoffending strategies ‘should ignore ethnicity’

Strategies used by Corrections to reduce re-offending should be carried out irrespective of ethnicity, Hobson’s Pledge spokesperson Casey Costello said today.

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Campaign begins to repeal resource iwi clauses

On Thursday, April 6, 2017, when the National Party and their two friends in the-Maori Party passed the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill, they also triggered a campaign to change the balance of power in Parliament.

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Brash: Resource bill passage sad for democracy


Today’s passage of the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill is a sad day for democracy and may cost the National Party the election, Hobson’s Pledge leader Don Brash said today.

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Appeaser Nats’ iwi clauses put tribes above citizens


The National-Maori government – possibly TODAY – are about to pass a bill that amounts to a major surrender of your country to the tribal elites.

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Brash praises Hastings Maori ward decision

Yesterday’s recommendation by the Hastings District Council Maori joint committee against Maori wards for the district reflects messages we are receiving from the public, Hobson’s Pledge spokesperson Don Brash said today.

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He iwi tahi tatou

Casey-Costello-1_1467766472_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgSince Hobson’s Pledge was launched in September last year I have spoken in various forums. In every instance I have referred to the greeting by Governor Hobson to each chief upon signing the Treaty of Waitangi… “He iwi tahi tatou”.

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National’s RMA Changes – a major constitutional victory for Iwi Leaders

New Zealanders are inherently egalitarian – it’s part of who we are. It’s not surprising therefore, that we as a society believe in equality before the law. We do not want local government – nor the country – divided by race.

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Rodney Hide: Tribalism subverts democracy

The approach by successive governments to Maori economic development is a triumph of hope over understanding and experience. More darkly, it’s the triumph of politics over what is good and just.

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Labour’s land-grab claim shows cracks in claimed treaty settlements consensus

The Labour Party’s sudden opposition to a bill that would enable some Auckland reserve land to be used in a treaty settlement for housing appears to show cracks in the claimed cross-party consensus on treaty settlements.

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Legislative lunacy – the Wanganui river person

If there was ever a moment when you thought New Zealand had drifted into the twilight zone, that moment could be when a Minister of the Crown with a straight face said that the Wanganui River had become a person.

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Maori name proposed for Far North Council

It was interesting to see people’s reactions on Maori TV to deputy mayor McInnes proposal to change the name of the Far North Council. They asked “Why?” or suggested she talk to the people or concentrate on fixing infrastructure first and foremost. 

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Govt by iwi leaders through Nats

Data obtained under the Official Information Act shows that since November 2008 there have been at least 44 meetings between the former Prime Minister, John Key, the current Prime Minister, Bill English, other senior Ministers, and the Iwi Leaders Group.

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Taxpayers gift $450k to build private family home

Taxpayers have gifted $450k towards the building of a nine-bedroomed private family house, the first of its kind under the government’s “papakainga project” funded through its Whanau Ora fund.

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Greens ignore race-based waste

Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei is blissfully unaware of the appalling waste of money and self-serving, like the Auckland Maori Statutory Board, that has come about through a race-based approach to local government, Hobson’s Pledge spokeswoman Casey Costello said today.

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Ask MPs to vote against RLA Bill

If you think the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill that includes iwi participation clauses would be a disaster for New Zealand, please email your MP to ask him or her to vote against it.

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Grand RLA co-governance scheme bad law

The iwi participation clauses included in the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill show that Environment Minister Dr Nick Smith has put his desire not to work with NZ First leader Winston Peters above sound legislation, Hobson’s Pledge spokesperson Casey Costello said today.

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Casey Costello Orewa 2017

Casey-Costello-1_1467766472_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgHe iwi tahi tatou . . . . . we are now one people.

In the early 1980s the talented William James Te Wehi TAITOKO captured the hearts and smiles of New Zealanders.

Billy T James made us laugh, at ourselves, at him, at our differences and our similarities. 

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Brash Orewa 2017

image_DB_over_mp3.jpgIt’s almost exactly 14 years since I first addressed the Orewa Rotary Club, and almost exactly 13 years since I came here as Leader of the National Party to give a speech which, for a time, turned “Orewa” from a place to a date, so that people spoke of “before Orewa” or “after Orewa”, rather than north of Orewa or south of Orewa!

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Tribes plan for $1b plus water ownership

Mike-Butler_1467521879_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgA $1-billion “capacity building” fund plus tribal ownership of freshwater, of all Crown owned river and lake beds, and the water column, are among proposals the Freshwater Iwi Leaders Group took around the country in 2015 for tribal ratification.

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Key leaves lingering racist legacy

Few other politicians have done more to create conditions ripe for the destruction of racial equality

Michael_Coote.jpgGone-by-Monday Prime Minister John Key shrewdly picked a retirement date amenable for collecting one of those New Year’s honour knighthoods he personally reinstated.

His timing is opportune for him, not least because of the gathering catastrophe for New Zealand democracy he has engineered but can now slough parliamentary accountability for.

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Beware of separatism - we are NZers first


PUBLIC MEETING – TAURANGA           22 November 2016

SPEECH – Casey Costello

This speech was delivered at Tauranga on November 22nd, 2016

He iwi tahi tatou………….at this time in New Zealand I don’t think there is a more powerful statement to be made.

Hobson’s Pledge has been established with total commitment to New Zealand’s history of equality – setting precedent for inclusion and unity.


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Crown Law trashes Bill of Rights Act

Sarah-Taylor3_1468396491_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgNew Zealand’s Bill of Rights Act, intended to protect us from discrimination on the grounds of race, has been left in tatters by the very lawyers tasked by Parliament with oversight of those rules. Intellectually dishonest or indoctrinated? Whichever the answer, Crown Law’s Constitutional and Human Rights Team should be sacked and replaced with lawyers capable of taking a principled stand.


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RMA deal shows Govt wedded to separatists

Don-Brash_1467519437_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgSupport for a call for improved iwi participation to get reforms to the Resource Management Act passed shows that the John Key-led government is joined at the hip with the separatist Maori Party, Hobson's Pledge spokesman Don Brash said today.

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The New Equation: Racial Preference = Unearned Privilege

Peter-Shirtcliffe22_1469534287_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgKiwis have always disliked and distrusted Unearned Privilege. Our collective psyche tolerates individual success, and, if decently handled by that individual, it will get respect and even quiet admiration. But the essential Kiwi commitment to fairness and equality is never far below the surface. It is underpinned by a belief that if a breach occurs, there are remedies. Either the “tall poppy” syndrome, or the democratic process, or both, kick in.

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Open Letter to Denis O'Reilly, Ngati Paarau

By Sarah Taylor

One Pure, owned by Hong Kong based corporation Hon Lung International, with the capital and expertise to build a massive water bottling facility, felt the need to approach Hawke’s Bay tribal entity Ngati Paarau[i]  for “support and partnership [ii]” in their endeavour. Why?

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Hobson's Pledge racist? Hardly!

By Don Brash


What on earth is racist or bigoted about arguing that all citizens should have equal political rights, Hobson's Pledge founder Don Brash wrote in Elocal magazine's November edition.

Hobson's Pledge, launched four weeks ago, takes its name from the words spoken by Governor William Hobson at the February 6, 1840, signing of the treaty of Waitangi, namely "we are now one people".


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Key wrong on separatism, Treaty, courts

By David Round

David-Round-2_1468379301_480X532_c_c_0_0.jpgPrime Minister John Key is indeed correct that most New Zealanders do want to live in a harmonious New Zealand but he was wrong about just about everything else he said in response to the launch of Hobson’s Pledge.

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