My prayer for the nation this Waitangi Day


Tēnēi te mihi ki te kaihanga i te timatanga, nāna te rangi e tū nei, nāna te papa e takato nei.
Nāna ngā maunga pokapoka kapua, nāna ngā puna waiora, ngā awa, ngā manga me te moana nui.
Nāna ngā ngāhere whāngai tangata, nāna te ao me te pō. Nāna ngā mea katoa.
Ki a Ranginui e tū nei, te reo rauriki, tēnā koe.
Ki a Papatuānuku, te reo reiuru, tēnā koe.
Ki a koutou katoa i huihui mai nei i tēnēi rā, tēnā koutou katoa.


E nga Atua o te Moana-nui-a-kiwa, (God of the Pacific Ocean)
Me enei motu o Aotearoa, (And these islands of Aotearoa,)
Nga Atua o te iwi Maori, te iwi Pakeha, (The God of Maori and Pakeha,)
Me ratou katoa e noho nei i tenei whenua; (And all who dwell in this land;)

We delight in the potential of this still, quiet dawn and the precious uniqueness of these green islands of Aotearoa New Zealand.

We give thanks for what is ours and ours alone: For our weta and katipo, our kakapo and kokako; for our Maui dolphins and pipi, our cabbage trees and harakeke.

May we have the courage and the grace to live in harmony with creation – to nurture and protect those wild places that we love and sustain us.

We are thankful for the inspiration of the great women in our own country – Princess Te Puea, Dame Mira Szaszy, Sister Mary Aubert, and Millicent Baxter – women who have shown us how the power of love, peace, compassion, courage, and wisdom can transform poverty and hardship into strength and well being.

How can we, as this country’s leaders, address the inequity that has grown up amongst us?

How can we build a nation where we trust and look after one another – where we are our brother’s and sisters keeper – not their bitter rival?

We look to the children of our country for this inspiration, their unconditional love, their need for care and comfort.

Whakanuia to matou aroha tetahi ki tetahi, (Increase our love and trust in one another)
Whakakahangia to matou whai (And strengthen our quest)
Ki te tika, te hohourongo hoki. (For justice and reconciliation.)

On this Waitangi Day, may Te Tiriti o Waitangi be a reminder of the covenant that two sovereign nations have made with each other.

May Te Tiriti continue to challenge us to honour one another and return love and compassion to the heart of our politics and our lives spent together.



Delivered February 6, 2013, Treaty House, Waitangi
Metiria is the first Green Party Co-leader to speak at the Waitangi Day dawn service.

39 Comments Posted

  1. I couldn’t help but note “greenfly’s” vitriol toward the PM. It would appear that he / she regards JK is a bit of a parasite further sucking the NZ populance dry.
    Perhaps it’s the gardener in me greenfly but may I make a suggestion that if you wish to be quite disassociated from Key that you consider a name change. Greenfly is another word for aphid (just in case you were not aware) and they are not regarded favourably given that they slurp the sap out of plants, spread disease and generally contribute to vegetational demise. Best thing is to spray them dead. Sorry dude, but that’s a fact.

  2. If you have 51% of voting rights, you have control.

    Not automatically. It actually depends on the company constitution. Also, 51% of voting rights does not always equal 51% of shares or capital invested.

    The question of minority rights actually gets quite complicated, therefore the simplest way of maintaining public utility for a good that is critical and non-substitutable (like energy), is to maintain a public monopoly (or alternatively, free up the capital structure and closely regulate).

    Unfortunately the current government is choosing the worst possible scenario – privatise a portion while socialising the ongoing risk (i.e. cost of replacement) and refusing to beef up regulation to ensure public utility.

    If you’re saying “a house for life” you’re handing control to the occupier by contract, even though you’re using their neighbor to fund it.

    Not quite. This is the difference between de jure and de facto ownership and is entirely down to the formation of the contract.

  3. If you have 51% of voting rights, you have control. If you’re saying “a house for life” you’re handing control to the occupier by contract, even though you’re using their neighbor to fund it.

    You do give away some rights in EXCHANGE for capital. It is up to you to be careful that the rights you give away are worth less than what you gain.

    For example, I’m guessing a lot of those “assets” are in need of some pretty serious capital works sometime soon. I’ll wait to see the prospectus.

  4. That makes no sense, Arana.

    Ownership is control. If you own no part of something, you can control no aspect of it. Control is basically proportional to ownership.

    To whit, no one would give you money for something – 51% or 100% of your house – without expecting the requisite bundle of rights* that comes with their purchase. By the act of transferring your property you are transferring your property rights, in perpetuity.

    The only way a non-private entity (i.e. the government) can subvert this established bundle of rights is by superseding them via legislation – something the current government has been quick to shy away from.

    *the bundle of right being commonly understood to be:

    1. the right to use the good in perpetuity
    2. the right to earn income from the good in perpetuity
    3. the right to transfer the good to others without interference
    4. the right to enforcement of property rights via the courts

  5. No, with *control* comes power i.e. 51%

    I’ll gladly sell you 51% of my house if I can retain control of it. In fact, I’d gladly sell you 100% on that basis.

    Why is sunk capital such a great idea?

  6. Why this stupid fixation with ownership?

    It’s pretty simple, Arana.
    With ownership comes power (i.e property rights).

  7. So much for analysis, then.

    Why don’t you insist government owns 100% of, say, the buildings it resides in in Wellington? In reality, they own very few. Why? Doesn’t make sense to tie up all that capital being owners when it’s the use and control they want. Same with power. Power generation is not going anywhere, it’s simply a question of how much capital you want to leave tied up.

    Is that the referendum that’s taken you eight months of concerted effort by a political party and you still haven’t got the numbers? Let’s say people do come out against it – will you then recognise the results of the smacking referendum and insist the government act on it?

  8. You know he is, I know he is, every New Zealander knows he is. The referendum will reveal the true depth of understanding about the theft. Can’t wait!
    Return to the taxpayer! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Oh, my aching sides!

  9. No, he isn’t.

    Why aren’t you flapping about Air New Zealand? How can we possibly not own 100% of our airline! The horror!

    Why this stupid fixation with ownership? Forget about ownership and look at the return to the taxpayer. You know why the likes of Google/Facebook et al float on the stockmarket? Because using other people’s money makes a lot more sense that capitalising it all yourself.

    Key is stealing nothing from Maori. They no more own water than they own Saturn.

  10. John Key is attempting to steal from Maori, and from all other New Zealanders, as bjchip correctly points out. I don’t care about Labour. I don’t “agree with his politics” as you suggest and I do think that his attempted theft is a very good reason for some on the marae to “be rude to him”. They just weren’t rude enough, in my opinion.

  11. John Key is not trying to steal anything from Maori. He’s doing a lot more giving than Labour before him.

    You may agree or disagree with his politics, but that is no reason to be rude to a guest.

    That is civility. It’s the mark of civilisation.

  12. Ah! So you’re i roto i te whaapuni, e mimi ana ki waho! It’s no wonder then, that you speak with such deep understanding of Tangata Whenua.

  13. My brother is married to a Maori woman and my nephews and niece look Maori. Every time I’ve been to their Marae, I’ve felt nothing but welcome. It’s a very pleasant place, but perhaps they do it differently up north.

  14. Bevin – your comment is so on-the-button that I’m devoting the rest of the day to meditating on it – thank you.

  15. Eloquent and appealing to the best in us humans. well done Metiria. One must make those speaches. That keeps the divine goal clear. One must also slog with tactics and cleverness to find the cracks in the other side’s argument that we can open wider and, as Leonard Cohen puos it”Cracks are where the light gets in”. Politics is both the idealism and the persuasion and direct action that embarrasses government etc when needed. But the idealism here is a our vital starting point.

  16. Each marae is different from the other. If you’ve not experienced tension and challenge on a marae then I suggest you’ve not been to many, or perhaps you’ve only attended ‘nice’ showpiece events.

  17. Protest and challenge on marae is a time honoured tradition. Demanding politeness is a modern affectation. “Courageous” Mr Key’s been lucky, so far. At any rate, his goons are always at his elbow. It’s all theatre and of no account.

    Really? Because I’ve yet to encounter it on a Marae. As a guest, I’m always treated very well, and certainly not rudely.

    Granted, I haven’t been to a Northland Marae. Perhaps they do it differently up there.

  18. You ‘what rock have you been under’ implies that I’m some sort of lowly cockroach-like creature

    Typical use of the term is the suggestion you haven’t being paying attention to current events, but if that’s what you get from it, then that’s interesting.

    You were talking about “taking something valuable”. Is value and wealth now just a “tory” thing?

    What’s a “tory”?

  19. Protest and challenge on marae is a time honoured tradition. Demanding politeness is a modern affectation. “Courageous” Mr Key’s been lucky, so far. At any rate, his goons are always at his elbow. It’s all theatre and of no account.
    What about the Maori unemployment figures, Your Courageousness?

  20. A Marae is not the same as a house, and the Maori people aren’t a family. I think there is a theft occurring, but I disagree that it is the Maori alone suffering the loss. Should they ALL be polite? Not all would have extended an invitation. Yet there was an invitation, is it honorable to insult a guest? Is it a message that MUST be delivered this way?

    These is a question I think have no “right” answer.

  21. He’s trying too. I hope he fails. You ‘what rock have you been under’ implies that I’m some sort of lowly cockroach-like creature – thanks for the insult – I’d hate to be a guest in your house!
    Your ‘transfer of wealth’ comment reveals your Tory core. It’s not pretty.

  22. It’s still an invitation.

    He hasn’t stolen anything. I’m not sure what rock you’ve been under, but the transfer of wealth under Keys government from crown to Maori has been one way.

  23. It’s a standing invitation. You didn’t read the comment.

    He’s coming anyway and he’s used his influence to try steal from you. Are you going to greet him civilly?

  24. I may choose not to invite them, but once I do, they are my guests and will be treated accordingly.

    That is civility.

  25. If you had a standing invitation for someone to visit your house and they meanwhile took you to court to take from you something you know to be yours, something enormously valuable, would you treat them civilly?
    I’d not let them through the door. I’d greet them with a rain of clods.
    Maori are too, too polite for my liking.

  26. THAT is true Arana… and it separates Key who is the PM from Key who is the guest.

    The question is which consideration should dominate in this specific environment. Clearly there is some “small” disagreement 🙂

    However, you DO have a point about his being a guest and there being a responsibility to be civil to guests. The question is whether it overrides the responsibility to “speak truth to power”. I won’t say you are wrong to take the side of that you do. Greater civility would be a blessing for this (and many other) countries.

  27. If I invited any Green MP to my house, I would show them respect as they are my invited guests. It does not require they earn it, or for me to agree with them, or anyone to take what *I* deem to be “responsibility”.

    That is civility.

  28. Some Maori “leaders” have done better than others. Hone comes to mind immediately as one of the best of them. It seems they have many of the same strengths – and weaknesses – of any other group of humans.

    Respect IS earned, it cannot be given. Responsibility must be TAKEN, it cannot be given. This government takes no responsibility and earns no respect.

  29. “courageous” for turning up at Waitangi.

    I don’t know why he bothers when they’re so rude to him.

    Helen Clark had the right idea. Avoid the odious place until they can be civil and respectful.

  30. And there we have it. Metiria’s speech falls on deaf ears.

    He’s the PM. If whoever is in that role, and s/he is your invited guest, you show *your guest* respect. You don’t need to agree with him.

    Should we start abusing Maori leaders at functions because we don’t feel they have earned respect, or should we show them respect we’d show any of our *invited guests*?

  31. Respect – you gotta earn it. Key hasn’t. Hilarious though, that he describes himself as “courageous” for turning up at Waitangi.

  32. “ honour one another and return love and compassion to the heart of our politics and our lives spent together.”

    That’s a great sentiment and a great prayer Metiria. May God also grant us the wisdom to know the difference between coercion and compassion, power and grace.

Comments are closed.