I have no sympathy for the lefties and greenies now getting caught by the same electoral laws they supported to cripple free expression during elections.
I detest electoral laws that regulate expression of political opinions; including those started by Labour and finished by National that require groups to register with the electoral commission to voice an opinion during the election, and to restrict what they can spend to do it.
These laws were proposed by people whose self-identity is that they are alternative, minority, poor, grass-roots and genuine. They are actually middle-class beltway types who just have a point of view, and have money to express it. Now they’re going to Court to effectively request an exemption based on who they are and what they support.
They have been caught by a law, and an Electoral Commission, that is blind in its application. It doesn’t distinguish between viewpoints, class of support, degree of self-righteousness, or origin of money.
But even though applied fairly, the law shouldn’t exist at all in a democracy that cherishes freedom of expression.
It exists because the greens and lefties originated it, supported it and hassled their peers in the beltway to get it through. They thought it would only apply to ugly insincere vested business and right wing interests.
Politicians really loved the idea because it kills public third party support for their opponents. They prefer an even debating field restricted to official political parties without the hassle of real people voicing their unsophisticated thoughts.
I totally support the right of Greenpeace to argue for an issue and spend money to do it. But when it mattered, they did not support the right to others to do the same.
It’s time for them to voice some truly liberal opinions: support public expression of dissent and support without restrictions.