Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Journey To Avondale: Getting To Know NZ First.

A Stone-Cold Certainty: Winston Peters addresses the 2016 NZ First Conference. After getting to know some of its Auckland members in 2009, I came away with an entirely new understanding of the NZ First Party. For a start, it was a real party. Fifty or sixty people would regularly turn up to the Sunday afternoon party get-togethers I attended. The other firm impression I came away with was that, in terms of policy, NZ First was very reminiscent of the Labour Party before Rogernomics: good-hearted, genuine, with generous helpings of both economic radicalism and social conservatism.
 
IT WAS DURING Winston Peters’ three-year exile from Parliament that I first got to know NZ First up close and personal. A friend of mine, a sometime NZ First activist, was contemplating putting her name forward as a candidate and asked me if I’d care to accompany her to a party get-together and fund-raiser in Avondale.
 
The whole event sounded intriguing. There was to be a film-showing preceded by a roast dinner with all the trimmings. There would be plenty of wine and beer on sale. What was not to like?
 
Very little, as it turned out. The venue itself was a curious mixture of museum and movie-theatre. As we walked up the long driveway I noticed objects that I had not encountered in more than forty years. Petrol pumps (“bowsers” we used to call them) bearing long-dead brands, and sheet-metal signage of similar vintage. The “dining-room” was packed and seriously overheated on account of the furious ovens in which our meal was cooking.
 
It was an arrangement that could hardly be beaten if your mission was to sell as many cool drinks as possible. Cold-ish beer in hand, I set out to meet the stalwarts of NZ First.
 
It turned out to be a jarring experience. Not because the NZ Firsters I met were seriously eccentric misfits and/or irretrievably bigoted rednecks, but because they weren’t. Indeed, what the gathering reminded me of most forcefully was the sort of Labour Party fund-raiser I used to attend in the late-1970s and early-1980s. There was the same mix of robust working-class gregariousness and well-mannered middle-class cordiality – and the same very low incidence of university-educated professionals. When politicians use that dreadful expression “ordinary New Zealanders” these are the sort of folk they have in mind.
 
It was a great afternoon/evening – made all the more entertaining by watching a movie in what was, surely, the smallest cinema in Auckland – and I came away with an entirely new understanding of the NZ First Party. For a start, it was a real party. Fifty or sixty people had turned up on a Sunday afternoon in support of a party that had no parliamentary representation. A party constructed around the fortunes of a single individual just doesn’t behave like that. The other firm impression I came away with was that, in terms of policy, NZ First was, again, very reminiscent of the Labour Party before Rogernomics: good-hearted, genuine, with generous helpings of both economic radicalism and social conservatism.
 
I went back at least a couple more times to that strange little complex in Avondale. I was even invited to give my hosts a short pre-dinner talk on the subject of “The Politics of the NZ News Media”. Never again would I be taken-in by the lofty condescension of my journalistic colleagues in relation to NZ First’s political viability. Those journeys to Avondale had convinced me that Winston’s return was a stone-cold certainty. When NZ First bolted back into Parliament with 6.5 percent of the Party Vote in 2011, I wasn’t a bit surprised.
 
The sort of people who are constantly being surprised by NZ First’s success are the same sort of people who, in the United Kingdom, were dumbfounded by the result of the EU Referendum. Neoliberalism has, for the most part, been very good to these sort of people. With both feet firmly planted on the property ladder; blessed with carefully crafted contracts OF (not FOR) service; taken seriously by journalists, bureaucrats and politicians; they simply cannot understand what the people who are not like them are on about.
 
That’s NZ First’s great advantage. It’s membership is made up, overwhelmingly, of people who aren’t in the least bit like the people who don’t understand them. As a party, NZ First is a bit like the Guardian columnist who walked all the way from Liverpool to London. Mike Carter knew weeks before the actual vote that Brexit would win. Why? Because the sort of people who never get invited onto the BBC’s current affairs shows had told him how they intended to vote. Men and women who hadn’t cast a ballot for years were making sure they registered. The opportunity to pay back the elites who had ripped their communities to shreds, and consigned them and their families to the social skip, was just too delicious to miss.
 
Something in me hopes that the boys and girls of the Parliamentary Press Gallery never make the journey to Avondale, or its equivalents in the towns and cities of New Zealand. I don’t want them to send camera crews to Geraldine and Dannevirke to record the packed-out halls for Winston Peters, or the numbers signing-up to NZ First after every meeting. Why? Because I want them to be as shocked on Election Night 2017 as the BBC’s Jonathan Dimbleby was on 23 June. I want to hear them wail: “How could this have happened?” and “What does it mean?” I want them to be left stunned by – of all people – their fellow New Zealanders. The ones they’ve never met.
 
This essay was originally posted on The Daily Blog of Monday, 5 September 2016.

37 comments:

jafapete said...

Deadly accurate on the media elite. That's what I love about door knocking. Nothing else gives you quite so precise a feel for what's happening in the electorate.

Polly said...

Absolutely a great post, the whole post to me sounds as if it is Jeremy Corbyn and Donald Trump wrapped into one old NZ codger who is having plenty of fun and games in his dotage.

There are not many people in NZ politics who understand MMP as well as he does, no one in Labour or the Greens. Their own support for MMP without deep thought and polemic has put them in famine.

One or two in National, three or four in the rest of the NZ political elite.

We are in uncertainty because Winnie is old and in his sunset.

God defend New Zealand.

Joce said...

Well said Chris.

Nick J said...

I have known these people all my life. They were on LECS with me, they are my parents, they are the people who fought for conservation orders on rivers, they run papers deliveries and pump petrol in small town NZ. Well spotted Chris. To a man and woman they will all tell you that the social contract is broken and they all want it back.

Jack Scrivano said...

I am not a fan of Mr Peters. However, like you, Chris, I was recently at a gathering of 60 or so of his supporters.

We were gathered together to celebrate the birthday of one of our number. I guess the average age of the celebrants was somewhere around 70. Most were retired or semi-retired. In a previous life they had mainly been small-business owners, farmers, and the like. Quite a few of the women were widows. And every single one of them gave the impression of being ‘politically active’.

Given that the celebration was being held at a golf club in the east of Auckland, I had expected a bit of a following for that nice Mr Key. But he was only their second choice. At least he was not the distant third that Andrew Little was. ‘That Mr Little is such an angry man,’ one elderly woman said to me. ‘We can’t have someone like that running the country. We just can’t.’

Another of the guests asked me – with a furrowed brow: ‘Is there anyone in the current Labour Party who has had a proper job? Is there anyone who knows what it’s like to be a real New Zealander?’

I came away from the gathering feeling rather flat. But also knowing that NZ First had at least 60 or so votes in the bag.

Jens Meder said...

Chris - That looks to me as if you seem to appreciate centrist policies as a possible hope for the future - and if so - good on you - and then perhaps even confirmed Lefties with a more harmonious and fruitful future as a priority over winning elections at any price - might become interested in critically discussing and comparing centrist proposals with those more distant from the Center, to the Left or Right ?

Guerilla Surgeon said...

New Zealand First has actually done practical things that help ordinary people. I know that retirees appreciate the gold card, and I certainly appreciated the free medical care for young kids, being in and out of the bloody doctors every 5 minutes it seemed at one time. I mean the rhetoric has been strong at times but as far as I can remember they've never tried to wag the dog when they've been in government. Winston even made a passable foreign affairs minister at one time :). I can just about imagine a situation where I'd vote for them. I can certainly see why other people do.

Patricia said...

Yes, I agree with you Chris. Somehow this country has to get back to its roots. Everything that was created over the last 150 years has been destroyed by both National and, for God's sake, Labour.

Kokila Patel said...

We seem to be learning not to take any notice of people who disagree with our own opinions, and where the internet was seen as a tool for dissenting voices to debate, not enough of it takes place. Labour ignore a certain sector of their old supporters, they won't go to National or the Greens, but will to Winston - amazingly that is old news, but experts lap it up

swordfish said...

"What the gathering reminded me of most forcefully was the sort of Labour Party fund-raiser I used to attend in the late-1970s and early-1980s. There was the same mix of robust working-class gregariousness and well-mannered middle-class cordiality – and the same very low incidence of university-educated professionals. When politicians use that dreadful expression “ordinary New Zealanders” these are the sort of folk they have in mind ... NZ First was, again, very reminiscent of the Labour Party before Rogernomics: good-hearted, genuine, with generous helpings of both economic radicalism and social conservatism."





Certainly the New Zealand Election Study data suggests that NZF's support-base originates disproportionately from former Labour voters. That wasn't true in the 90s but it is now. Far greater Lab-to-NZF (than Nat-to-NZF) swings over the last few Elections. Largely (though not entirely) the socially conservative end of Labour's old core constituency****. Some similarity with Red Ukippers (as opposed to the Blue variety) in the UK.

Also explains why Polls have shown that NZ First voters are even more opposed to the TPPA and were even more sceptical of Key's explanation surrounding Dirty Politics at the last Election than current Labour voters.

**** Although, there remain plenty of Labour voters on the conservative side of the spectrum on moral/social issues (as NZES has shown)

Kat said...

Why has it taken so long to write/publish this Chris? Winston is definitely taking over Northland and most likely for all the reasons you put forward.

Joe-90 said...

Nice column Chris and I have voted Labour, Green or NZ First all my life, but never right of that. I think there is more overlap between them than commonly accepted. Something I admire about Winston, once you set aside the bluster and all the bits the beltaway folk point out, is everyone knows what he stands for, and he has been consistent through time. In this, I feel he is a long way ahead of Labour, who have got lost in identity politics, among other things, over class, and never really sorted out their place post Douglas.

This quote on British Labour, lifted from a Guardian article on the predicament of the left, nicely sums up the situation of Labour here, today, and contrasts almost precisely the opposite with NZ First, which is why to my mind a party of only one major national politician (two counting Ron Marks - but either way far less depth than Labour) can poll roughly 1 vote for every 2 of Labour's:

"In 1931, the great Labour thinker RH Tawney wrote a short text titled The Choice Before the Labour Party, casting a cold eye over its predicament in terms that ring as true now as they must have done then. Labour, he wrote, “does not achieve what it could, because it does not know what it wants. It frets out of office and fumbles in it, because it lacks the assurance either to wait or to strike. Being without clear convictions as to its own meaning and purpose, it is deprived of the dynamic which only convictions supply. If it neither acts with decision nor inspires others so to act, the principal reason is that it is itself undecided.”

peter petterson said...

You never know Chris. But there must be some talk of succession somewhere down the track?

jh said...

David Farrar's Realestate Ratbags and and immigration agents (Keeping Stock) disagree
http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2016/09/we_all_know_what_it_means_when_winston_says_no_-_yes.html
.....................

I joined NZ First and nothing happened. I expected at least a carrier pigeon to arrive? Apparently you have to pay monthly $10 to have a say (not sure what that means), but there is nothing like a forum (as the Greens have). I can understand how the media would be gleaning comments from a forum to sling mud but how can they build arguments without resources (e.g) people who record media bias and people who can critique arguments and add language to orphaned feelings such as the gutting of our communities? Currently everything is good, good and good or if it is bad it is the property of a left-wing journalist "these are our most vulnerable"

Wayne Mapp said...

I have always felt you have had a fair bit of fondness for NZ First.

Most of my relatives on my fathers side fit exactly into the NZ First voter profile, and I know they have been faithful to the cause over the ups and downs.

For me NZ First has been more like traditional National, the true inheritors of "Robs Mob", though virtually all of that generation have now passed away. But I guess NZ First also appeals to many traditional Labour voters as well. Certainly his current level of support, and Labour's decline indicates that. It would not surprise me if NZ First gets between 15 and 20% of the vote in 2017.

How to explain National's current support. Well, National appeals to tertiary educated people in the professions and business. Also to self employed and SME owners. And there are lot of them who have done well in recent years. And they do so without thinking of themselves as "neo-liberal", which is just seen by them as a term of abuse bandied about by the left. A lot more people in the broader public service support National than Labour understands. Just because most teachers are in the teacher unions does not mean they vote Labour. Together this all adds to over 40% of the population.

I did note Winston's recent use of the term "neo-liberal", which I took to be a direct pitch to Labour's core intellectual constituency. More than a few on The Standard have been talking about Winston as a viable option for their vote.

However, there is (or at least was) a natural alignment between National and NZ First, which goes some way to explain 1996. But the fall out of that, particularly for Winston was severe, and has continued over the years. He certainly has not forgotten the Privileges Committee hearing of 2008, and his time in exile.

What does this mean for 2017? Is there a formula which means he is not part of a coalition but has some Ministerial positions. Seems hard to imagine constitutionally. But I also cannot see him simply sitting on the cross benches with no direct role in the government.

I would note he seemed to manage 2005 to 2008 as Foreign Minister without quite looking like he was part of the Clark government. It was certainly a quite different approach than the coalition of 1996. And John Key has taken more than a few political lessons from Helen Clark over the years.

jh said...

I see Nigel Latta's master piece The New New Zealand with it's balanced expert input (Professor Spoonley) was so good it had to be run again. Nothing to do with a backlash against immigration of course!

jh said...

alloytoo

Any body else watch Nigel Latte’s show last night on immigration?

I confess it was very different from what I expected and contained a few home truths regarding the current hysteria.

Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 Log in to Reply ReportSeptember 7, 2016 8:39am

12,737 comments
Keeping Stock

I haven’t seen it yet alloytoo, but will watch it online. Interestingly though, Latta tweeted last night that Winston Peters has already accused him of being a front for the National Party; that seems to be Peters’ favourite accusation at the moment. Latta replied to Peters that he simply looks at things through both eyes; nice comeback.
Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0 Log in to Reply Report
....
Standard 8 - Blalance
A number of criteria must be satisfied before the
requirement to present significant alternative viewpoints
is triggered. The standard applies only to news, current
affairs and factual programmes (see the definition
under Standard 9 – Accuracy below), which discuss a
controversial issue of public importance. The subject
matter must be an issue ‘of public importance’, it must
be ‘controversial’ and it must be ‘discussed’.
An issue of public importance is something that would
have a significant potential impact on, or be of concern
to, members of the New Zealand public. A controversial
issue will be one which has topical currency and excites
conflicting opinion or about which there has been
ongoing public debate. In most cases, human interest
or personal stories will not be considered controversial
issues of public importance.
In determining whether programmes breach this
standard, the following factors will be considered:

the programme’s introduction and the way in
which the programme is presented

the type of programme

the nature of the issue and of the discussion

whether the programme approaches a topic
from a particular perspective

whether the programme acknowledges the
existence of other views

whether the audience could reasonably be
expected to be aware of other views, including
in other media sources

the platform on which the programme
is broadcast.
A key consideration is what an audience expects from a
programme, and whether they were likely to have been
misinformed by the omission or treatment of a significant
perspective (for example, where a significant perspective
is presented with limited coverage or in a manner which
undermines its validity)

Merry Whacker said...

Parliamentary Gallery types - news media types in general - tend to keep hammering the same points (erroneous or otherwise) over and over again, like a mantra.

Typically, you'll find that you don't need a university degree in NZ to be a journalist; hence the tunnel-vision view of the world in journalism.

Dennis Frank said...

Excellent essay, Chris. Gave me a smile as I finished it. You didn't mention identity politics - didn't need to - but it's clear to me that is the conceptual framework underlying.

Centrists are real people too (despite the ongoing leftist aversion to their existence) - but mainstreamers who are merely conservative centrists make NZ First part of the problem rather than part of the solution. We need more radical centrists!

greywarbler said...

The way you tell it Chris, old Labour supporters branched off in two directions, one Jim Anderton's and one to Winston Peters. Jim was rigid it seems to me and lost his opportunity to carry the disaffected with him and light the way to better policies. For instance, he lost the opportunity to set better drug policies in place after a family tragedy, preferring to go for more control continuing failed policies. Another side of him has resulted in pushing for a rebuild of the old Christchurch cathedral, instead of going for a Coventry Cathedral approach. It was bombed in WW2, after which a new plan was adopted that looked to a hopeful future.

Winston has adeptly appealed to the concerns of old Labourites apparently.
And I will always remember him for the Winebox disclosures.

Amongst a plethora of yes-men and women bowing to the Free Market God and staying constant to the creed of Let Business Rule, Winston appeals by saying 'Here's mud in your eye'. Also he seems to have some policies that might be good. We need to have another Party beside the Greens that isn't simply sleepwalking through the political work until they can get away to their real jobs, self-advancement and being wealth magnets.

Dave said...

Its a scary thing,but as I get older the more sensible Winstone seems!

Polly said...

Chris, hard to understand only one post?, could be you have gremlins. I posted about two days ago.

JanM said...

Enjoyed this analysis.
The only thing that terrifies me about him is that, as he is likely to hold the balance of power, there is a possibility (however slight) that he would prop up this corrupt National government. Though, having said that, I would at least trust him to vote against them if they tried to put something through he didn't agree with

Guerilla Surgeon said...

('Any body else watch Nigel Latte’s show last night on immigration?'
Er... No because we realised you would summarise it for us in a completely incomprehensible way. So no need really.)

Whatever you say about Winston Peters, he is a consummate politician. The only problem is, that he is the only consummate politician that New Zealand 1st actually possesses. Everyone else's pretty much a nonentity. There is certainly no intellectual depth – but then that's true of most New Zealand politicians because as a country we tend not to value our intellectuals or intellectual thought. Mind you that's not to say that intellectuals necessarily make better politicians. Geoffrey Palmer was bloody hopeless for instance :). But we always seem to love our non-thinking Kiwi politicians of whatever stripe. I can't think of too many that wouldn't fit the bill – as someone once said about Ronald Reagan – "you could wade through his deepest thoughts and not get your ankles wet." Which would seem to apply to most of them, from David Lange to John Key.
But I do wonder what will happen when Winston pops his clogs. He is not getting any younger, and there doesn't seem to be an obvious successor unless we count Shane Jones. On the other hand it doesn't seem that his supporters are getting any younger either, and while us old people vote, we do tend to die off. I'd be really interested to see a demographic breakdown of New Zealand 1st's supporters. But they're probably not going to let that out of the bag. If anyone actually has any information on that or a link to it, I'd love to see it.
Personally I think conservatism flourishes when people are afraid. And just at the moment there is an amorphous fear around, possibly stemming from world events but people just seem to be afraid – of immigrants, of foreign students, of new and interesting ideas even. Not that Labour's really produced any so no need for them to worry really.:)

E.A. said...

Chris: How anyone in 2017 could be surprised by Winston riding into parliament on a wave of revenge politics I do not know. But since you probably know people in the press gallery I will have to take your word for it. Great post also.

jh said...

jafapete said...
We're all New Zealand Firsters now!
https://jafapete.wordpress.com/2008/06/04/clydesdale-again/

Jens Meder said...

In view of the centrist sympathies aroused by the "Journey to Avondale" calling for even "more radical centrists" (Dennis Frank), it might be appropriate to recall herewith, that yes, Winston is potentially a most radical centrist.

This was revealed, when he supported introduction of the "Cullen" NZ Super Fund under the condition, that it is not legislated in a way that makes its allocation to Personal Accounts legally or technically impossible if there is enough popular support for that.

Can there be anything more radically centrist than each citizen - even those without taxable income through the GST paid on their behalf or by them - being a shares owner of the NZ Super Fund, especially if that is complemented by the $1000.- Kiwi Saver kick-start to all "from cradle to grave", without a compulsory savings condition (which we have already for our NZ Super commitment) ?

jh said...

Here is this issue: It is/is not o.k to be a nation with a common ancestry and culture within a national boundary. In 1956 95% of New Zealanders were of common stock. Along came the left who decided such a situation was racist. No group should be dominant (the Chinese proclivity for real estate being an inconvenient truth). It was " a deliberate strategy" although it was to be almost a decade before there was an awareness of what exactly this meant

If you read the literature you will see the battle has always been "anti racists" (meaning those who fight against a natural tendency to want to be part of a nation state with a common heritage and culture - otherwise known as human nature) versus Winston Peters and New Zealand First:

Winston Peters and New Zealand First : Politicising Immigration

In reviewing the decade, and the coverage of immigration issues in the print media, it is
the dominant role played by Winston Peters in defining and generating debate which
stands out in the New Zealand context. It is particularly noticeable during the 1996 and
2002 election campaigns. There are some aspects which characterise both Winston
Peters’ contribution and the relationship of many in the media to him.

DEFINING IDENTITY AND CREATING CITIZENS : THE MEDIA AND IMMIGRANTS IN NEW ZEALAND
Paul Spoonley

With polls now showing 60% want greater restrictions on immigration elites now have to take notice. Their [Spoonley/Nana/Westpac] strategy is to now demand a population policy. That way we can plan for more migrants(build roads and schools and hospitals) so immigration can continue without the backlash. Meanwhile the young know no better and migrants have more tolerance for a larger population (and the proportion of migrant vote increases): time for another of Latta's "both my eyes open" piece of television propaganda..

jh said...

Guerilla Surgeon said...

('Any body else watch Nigel Latte’s show last night on immigration?'
Er... No because we realised you would summarise it for us in a completely incomprehensible way. So no need really.)
....
You realise that when Latta tells us how much migrants contribute compared to kiwis they don't count migrants children? Migrants don't have children, they have New Zealanders (therefore add to the cost of New Zealanders (early childhood education etc). Also he compares a 35 year old migrant with a 70 year old New Zealander so should be looking at it over a life cycle. He ignores the expense of extra infrastructure.
We have covered diversity and social cohesion; oxytocin and ethnic centrism, evolutionary psychology (Standard Social Science Model - The Blank State), migration as a [not] cure for an aging population, Kerry McDonald, Michael Reddell and the need for balance, Paul Krugman and the effect of migrants on an unskilled workforce?

David Stone said...

Hi Chris
Not a dissenting voice ! How interesting, only varying levels of agreement.
I'm not surprised the atmosphere reminded you of pre Rogernomic labour ; In that period both parties had the same basic objectives as N Z First still holds. Namely to run a social democracy utilising the country's resources to share active participation and wealth as evenly as practically possible among it's population. That meant providing employment for all New Zealanders, not necessarily for the whole world should they all want to come here, And not necessarily to share all resources with the greediest in the world whether they want to come here or not. In those days all NZ parties were New Zealand First, now there's only one. But I agree with GS that beyond Winston the lineup looks uninspiring , and I think unimproved by the most recent personnel adjustments .
Cheers David J S

greywarbler said...

GS
Just have to say I loved that one about Ronald Reagan. Did anyone in the USA actually say that? I have the suspicion that all their deepest thoughts are like Ron's.

But David Lange alongside Key? Tch tch. David was an earnest tryer, and was in deep, unlike Key who is the equivalent of a Water Strider or as more creatively known, a Jesus Bug, which walks on water. Amazing! See happy musical youtube example to maybe brighten a cold day!
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iAT_iBgn1QI

Talking about depth another earnest trier, Sir Dove-Myer Robinson d.1989, (a long term Mayor of Auckland who managed to make some changes such as bettering the sewerage system), was said to be 'Up to his neck in
sewage?' by his secretary to an enquirer. That's deep doo doo. We need more short, determined men (and women) like him that will get their hands dirty doing the real political work that ordinary NZ's need and want.

greywarbler said...

jh
Stop banging on about racism and diversity in NZ. It is not that they are not important subjects, it is that you have no more useful thoughts to express. If you do have to say something make it concise will you.

You don't seem to understand that we trade with the whole world, we go and interfere as part of a war machine in other people's countries. We have to interact with other peoples and learn to understand and accept them here, but do need a quota system or such. Then immigration would be good not overwhelming. Without it we would speed our backward slide to thinking the same as the dark ages pre-Great Depression and World War 2, where new thoughts and ideas were dismissed as ridiculous ivory tower dreams.

jh said...

David Stone
But I agree with GS that beyond Winston the lineup looks uninspiring , and I think unimproved by the most recent personnel adjustments
.....
Yes I wonder if Winston died who would step up as to be a successful politician you need intellect, social skills and verbal ability (it takes a thief to catch a thief). But you also need infrastructure. National wins as it has more money than you can shake a stick at thanks to the non-tradeables sector. But the left also has infrastructure thanks (largely) to having common interests with the non tradeables sector.

Michael Reddel and others have been making a difference since Dr Greg Clydesdale's bloddied body lay stabbed on the floor thanks to Russell Brown , Kim Hill Joris de Bres, Professor Spoonley and others. His paper covering what drives innivation is eye opening but the antithesis of the line the government has followed. Michael Reddell has a good slap down:
I’m not, repeat not, suggesting that the only factor explaining Chile’s pretty impressive productivity performance is the absence of a large non-citizen immigration policy. Rather, I’d see it as an illustrative example of a point I’ve made many times previously: successful countries mostly make their own success, through the skills and talents of their people, the energy and dynamism of their firms, the natural resource endowments they have, and the strength of their legal and cultural institutions. Cargo cults – “there is a better lot of people in other countries, if only we could get them here” – are not the answer.
https://croakingcassandra.com/2016/09/01/chile-undermining-the-nbr-editors-own-argument/

It would be interesting to see the war-horse Kim Hill re-interview Dr Clydesdale as it looks as though Nana and Co were bananas with their wildly optimistic expectations (= fail). Kim might have to "apologithze"

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"Here is this issue: It is/is not o.k to be a nation with a common ancestry and culture within a national boundary. "
This is what it was like in the 1950s and 60s, when Maori suffered from benign neglect – and were basically poor but invisible because they lived in the country. This at a time when the country was supposed to be in its golden years. I bet they were thinking about this issue all through the 19th century and early part of the 20th, particularly after 1865 when the government began to get really serious about flogging their land. Now there's something you could maybe chew over instead of repeating the same crap over and over again.

Guerilla Surgeon said...

As far as the ankles thing goes, someone has supposedly said it about Ronald Reagan, but either they got it from somewhere else or other people took it up because it has been said about a number of people now, including George W Bush. I couldn't for the life of me find out the actual name of the person who is alleged to have said it, but it's supposed to have been "a California legislator".

jh said...

"Here is the issue: It is/is not o.k to be a nation with a common ancestry and culture within a national boundary. "
This is what it was like in the 1950s and 60s, when Maori suffered from benign neglect – and were basically poor but invisible because they lived in the country.
..........
Yes whenever immigration crops up someone will mention Maori when one event is a fait accompli of 170 years ago and the other they are advocating for. To get around this dilemma they frame Pakeha colonisation as inherently racist whereas the new multiculturalism will be like one big birthday party (Maori will be the special boy/girl).

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"Yes whenever immigration crops up someone will mention Maori when one event is a fait accompli of 170 years ago and the other they are advocating for. To get around this dilemma they frame Pakeha colonisation as inherently racist whereas the new multiculturalism will be like one big birthday party (Maori will be the special boy/girl)."

Immigration crops up whenever you are on the site. And whenever you mention it you forget that we are ourselves immigrants – fait accompli or not. So in essence you are a dog in the manger, or a NIMBY. But basically it's a reaction to the fact that people/I are sick of you raising immigration every time there is a post. So we like to take the piss. Or at least I do – can't really speak for anyone else.
And of course you didn't comprehend the main thrust of my point, but that's par for the course.