Talk:List of Governors-General of New Zealand

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Arrangement[edit]

Why are the adminstrators listed under the GG's? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.193.240.250 (talk) 02:24, 19 August 2011 (UTC)

Presumably, they are there because it gives the reader more context than a separate list would do. That being said, I think, despite the note in the prose, the column giving the style of the office is unduly misleading. That is especially so because people who come to the list just want to see the list, not to read what comes above. Surely there is a better way we can present the changes. -Rrius (talk) 02:44, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
I'm not sure how it's misleading. The title has changed a number of times over the years. --LJ Holden 21:55, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
It's misleading because to the left of Dame Sian's name is a column that says "Governor-General of New Zealand", which she has never been. A better solution than a column that creates this problem and whose text isn't even visible for portions of the tables would be breaking the table up under different subject headings, as is done at lists for other offices around the project. -Rrius (talk) 03:40, 25 August 2011 (UTC)
Oh, I see what you mean. Fair enough. --LJ Holden 09:40, 25 August 2011 (UTC)
I made used rowspans to show overlapping GGs and PMs, but that made separating by sections a less desirable options, so I used colours (with a key) to show the different titles. I just picked four colours that were different enough for interpretive purposes, but I make no claims about the attractiveness of the palette. -Rrius (talk) 06:32, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I'm glad you're not precious about the colour scheme Face-tongue.svg - I found it a bit harsh (and I'm not a fan of row-shading) so I've tackled it with a separate (narrow) column, keyed with darker colours. I suppose it would be clearer if the column was moved left - next to the Gov/G-G ordinal number - but it was easier to use the "Term Began" cells as a reference point. FanRed XN | talk 02:59, 6 September 2011 (UTC)

Reasons for revert[edit]

I reverted two changes: the first took the colour shading and replaced it with a colour-shaded column with an abbreviation for the particular kind of officeholder (Governor General, Governor-in-Chief, etc.). The second differentiated between three types of "acting GG". I reverted the latter because it created the false distinction between a Chief Justice and an Administrator of the Government. When a Chief acts in the GG's stead, it is as Administrator of the Government. The other edit I reverted because it is wholly unnecessary to repeat "G G" over and over and over. A more subtle method of showing the difference is sufficient. In addition, I find the little squares of colour less user-friendly, not more. Also, the drastic reduction in colour shading eliminated the ability to tell at a glance that a person listed was an Administrator, rather than a GG. Finally, while I don't suggest my particular choices of colour are obviously perfect, I do find the alternative method far less aesthetically pleasing. -Rrius (talk) 03:04, 6 September 2011 (UTC)

There is no "false distinction" between Administrator of the Government and Chief Justice - Wynard was the only AotG that served only this position (twice), so a note to that effect was all that was needed, and I was addressing that in my then current edit when I struck an edit clash with your revert. I disagree with your assessment that the reduction in colour shading made any confusion between admins and Govs - my talk comment in the section above addresses that point, and if you think repetition of Gov or G-G is unnecessary then the easiest way to fix that is to remove the offending text - it was there to make the page more accessible, not less though. And finally, I took on this page because with screeds of colour over the whole page I found it almost totally unreadable. FanRed XN | talk 03:19, 6 September 2011 (UTC)
Yes there is a false distinction as it makes it sound as though Shortland and the Chiefs didn't serve as Administrators of the Government. If you want to make a note for Wynyard, do so with a ref, not something that creates the impression he is the only one to have ever been called Administrator of the Government. Your changes didn't just get rid of my colour shading, but also got rid of the colour distinction between Governors and Administrators that had always been there, which is how acting officials are treated in tables around the project. Finally, the answer to the colours being "unreadable" is to lighten the colours. Tables, again, throughout the project use similar sorts of colour shading, with no difficulty whatsoever. I have gone ahead of lightened the colours, which should do the trick. The colour shading allows recognition of the differences at a glance; your single little column is much less useful. I am going to try to reformat things so that section headings can be used instead of colours, but that may take some work. -Rrius (talk) 21:34, 6 September 2011 (UTC)

New Zealand born and resident[edit]

Footnote six: 6.^ Sir Arthur Porritt was the first New Zealand-born Governor General (although he had been living in Britain for 31 years at the time of his appointment). All Governors-General since Sir Denis Blundell have been New Zealand born and resident, and appointed by the Sovereign on the advice of the Prime Minister of New Zealand.

Is incorrect. Yes, all Governors-General since Blundell have been New Zealand resident, but they haven't all been New Zealand born. Sir David Beattie was born in Sydney: http://gg.govt.nz/node/1364

Opinion vs. Fact[edit]

I'd like to remove the opinion that the Governor-General is viewed as the de-facto Head of State and replace it with the fact that the GG is the Queen's representative in New Zealand.

The basis of this change is

  1. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia and not an opinion poll so facts matter not opinions.
  2. Constitution Act 1986, Section 2(2) states "The Governor-General appointed by the Sovereign is the Sovereign's representative in New Zealand" [1] where appointed and representative are the key phrases.

The contentious point is that editors can point to a neutral publisher informing that a contrary opinion exists however I feel (in my opinion) that this is out weighted by the fact that New Zealand Legislation states a contrary perspective that is the law (and the wiki entry relates solely to NZ).

Please add your opinion(s) otherwise without a contrary opinion I will make the change after 6 weeks at the end of October 2012.

-- Karl Stephens (talk)

Karl, the Constitution Act 1986 doesn't state a contrary position at all. look up the meaning of the term de facto. You have stated what is the de jure position - i.e. that the Queen is head of State. Here's the salient point:
When discussing a legal situation, de jure designates what the law says, while de facto designates action of what happens in practice.
As for the facts establishing the view that the Governor-General is our head of State de facto, you should probably read the citations in the Governor-General of New Zealand article. --LJ Holden 03:33, 22 September 2012 (UTC)
  • I am not sure that those references actually back up the statement that "The Governor-General acts as the Queen's vice-regal representative in New Zealand and is often viewed as the de facto head of state." (italics mine). The G-G may be viewed that way by some, but "often"? I'm not so sure. It is possibly a case of the second sentence even diminishing the importance of the monarchy—implying that the Queen of New Zealand is the head of state in theory, but not in practise. I agree this may be a case of WP:UNDUE—and so I'm really not sure that this should be the second sentence of the article! Things get worse when we compare the lead here to Governor General of Canada, which is better written and referenced than Governor General of New Zealand; the NZ articles look like poor cousins by comparison. - Shudde talk 12:19, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Remember this is not the primary article but simply the list of Governors and Governors-General. I have edited the the primary article to state "viewed by some" which is correct, as is "often"; however I agree that "often" is not very clear. --LJ Holden 04:20, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
The same statement is used in the main article! I think it's possibly words to avoid to say "by some"—the fact that someone has said it doesn't establish why it should be given such a prominent place in the opening two sentences of a list like this. The James article is an opinion piece, and quoting Helen Clark talking about a republic doesn't establish that this is a common view; it's drifting into WP:OR territory. Is there any research into common views of the Governor-General or Monarch of NZ by NZers—e.g. that the Governor-General is seen as the de facto head of state by the public at large? Politicians and political commentators aren't very representative. I think that it's applying undue weight to such a view, and I'm not even sure it is necessary in this lead (although it may be necessary in the lead of Governor-General of New Zealand). Stating the role and function of GG makes it pretty clear that the position exists to perform many of the functions of a head of state—so saying that some people view the position as the de facto head of state seems both superfluous and weasely. Would it not be better to be more explicit, and leave discussion of the perceived status of the position for Governor-General of New Zealand? - Shudde talk 04:59, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
It is a common view, from legal academics to political commentators to politicians to historians. Even the former Commonwealth Secretary-General and NZ foreign minister, Don McKinnon, thought so. Public opinion is always difficult to gauge - I'm not sure of any research that gives an idea of the Governor-General's standing. I would be interested to see it though. If there needs to be more references, I can add them. Agree that "by some" might not be appropriate, I was trying to avoid the potential lack of clarity by saying "often". However that said I would be happy for the introduction to this article to be much shorter, since this is only the list of Governors and Governors-General. --LJ Holden 08:38, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
The lead needs a rewrite anyway, which I will get around to eventually. I still think that it is a contentious statement, and isn't backed up adequately by WP:SECONDARY sources in my opinion. It's the specific way that the statement is worded that I have a problem with; not so much the sentiment (that the GG conducts most of the functions/duties of a head of state). I'll have to visit this again in the future when I have more time, especially considering the use of the statement in other articles. Would be good to hear what others think at some point. Thanks for the prompt replies though. - Shudde talk 07:42, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Chief Justices[edit]

Is it really necessary to list all the Chief Justices who have briefly acted on behalf of Governor General's in-between terms? To me it just makes the list look cluttered and confusing. What are other people's thoughts on potentially removing them from the main list? Kiwichris (talk) 06:31, 11 December 2015 (UTC)