the Questions Kiwis are asking about Civic and what we’re up to...
Doesn’t NZ have one of the greatest democracies in the world?
On paper, yes. In practice, we are far from living up to our hype – freedom of information does not meet our own legal requirements; lobbyist and interest groups have disproportionately large representation; the 5% bar for entry into parliament is too high … that’s just to start.
Fundamentally, we have an oppositional system that fosters a win/lose mentality and stops politicians from working well together to solve the challenges we face now – unaffordable housing, low productivity, climate change ... We must build bridges, not fences.
What are you working on?
Freedom of Information is the foundation of a functioning democracy. People have been grumbling about the Official Information Act for years. It’s time for action, and we’re raising money to fund a campaign to fix it.
Aren’t you guys from TOP? What about that Gareth Morgan, eh?
We were all attracted to TOP for the same reasons – sound, evidence-based, long-term policy.
We all left for the same reasons, in a nutshell: a values clash. We are not associated with Gareth Morgan in any way.
Are you a political party?
Civic is a political action group. We are not a political party. We may contest an election in the future but that will depend on many things outside our control. We aren’t going to twiddle our thumbs while we wait and see – we’re getting to work on strengthening Freedom of Information now.
Why don’t you join an established political party?
Party politics is riddled with oppositional thinking and short-term political point-scoring.
We need to drastically change the way we do things if we hope to overcome the big problems heading our way.