Friday 12 March 2021

New Arrangements: How Substituting ‘Aotearoa’ For ‘New Zealand’ Could End Up Destroying Both.

New Arrangements: Those who unthinkingly endorse the formulaic imprecations against systemic racism pouring from Race Relations Commissioner Meng Foon’s mouth, should remember the above scene from the movie Dr Zhivago. Revolutions do not always fail, but they do not always improve matters, either. In the name of social justice, the poor and the marginalised may seize the big houses of the rich, but they cannot live in them as the rich lived in them. Nor will they be taken without a fight.


MENG FOON, currently serving as the Human Rights Commission’s Race Relations Commissioner, epitomises New Zealand’s emerging ethnic crisis. His repeated refusals to view New Zealand society through anything other than the lens of entrenched ethnic privilege is exacerbating this crisis, not ameliorating it. That he receives no reproof from his fellow Human Rights Commissioners confirms that these are not considered personal lapses. The exacerbation of ethnic animosities in New Zealand should now be seen as both deliberate and systemic.

For the Labour Government of Jacinda Ardern the situation could hardly be more precarious. Over the next 5 years, as the Maori nationalist agenda is steadily advanced by its supporters both in and out of Parliament, more and more New Zealanders will demand an answer to the question: “Are these policies – and the radical changes their acceptance requires – understood and endorsed by Jacinda Ardern and her Labour colleagues; or, is she and her Government being played for fools?”

If the Prime Minister affirms her understanding and endorsement of the Maori nationalist agenda, then the ethnic crisis will become a straightforwardly partisan issue. With varying degrees of enthusiasm, the Left will support it. With steadily rising levels of vehemence, the Right will oppose it.

From some perspectives, this could be seen as the best option. By submitting the issue to the collective judgement of the voters, the strength of the contending forces will be exposed. The raw political calculus of the ballot box will clarify once and for all which of the two contenders’ assessment of the New Zealand electorate is correct.

The Left’s optimistic view of this country’s future will be put to the test. We shall discover whether most voters under the age of 55 really are uninfected by the racist colonialist prejudices of their parents and grandparents: really are so undaunted by the prospect of living in “Aotearoa”: a nation attuned fundamentally to the needs of te ao Maori; that they are willing to see the colonial legacy of Pakeha “New Zealand” fade away like a nineteenth century sepia print?

If that is the judgement of the electorate, then the Right will have to accept that its understanding of what it means to be a New Zealander no longer enjoys majority support. The proposition that New Zealand is a nation founded upon the philosophical and scientific precepts of the European Enlightenment, and governed according to its core principles of Liberty, Equality and Social Solidarity, will have been rejected. It would be a remarkable judgement, occasioning prolonged and impassioned remonstration, but the relentless passage of time would thin the ranks of the remonstrators, rendering it permanent.

It is, of course, highly unlikely that Jacinda or her party will ever openly endorse the Maori nationalist agenda. Principally, this is because neither the Prime Minister, nor her Pakeha colleagues, fully grasp its significance. The reason for this is set forth with brutal honesty and simplicity by the author of “Maori Sovereignty”, Donna Awatere. When challenged to explain why Pakeha would simply sit back and let the tangata whenua re-establish their hegemony over Aotearoa, Awatere responded:

“The strength of white opposition will be allayed by the fact that Maori sovereignty will not be taken seriously. Absolute conviction in the superiority of white culture will not allow most white people to even consider the possibility.”

In this regard, “Maori Sovereignty” belongs in the same category as “Climate Change” and “Housing Affordability”. People support the notion because, stated theoretically, it is difficult to identify a good reason for opposing it. Until, that is, they begin to get some idea of how much their lives will have to change if these propositions are ever taken seriously by government.

As Bernard Hickey pointed out in a recent (and excellent) posting on his website “The Kaka”:

“New Zealand is currently in the strategizing phase of dealing with its enormous housing affordability and climate change issues and politicians of all shades and sizes are doing plenty of swinging and falutin’. They are set to get eaten for lunch by an entrenched culture and love of suburban houses, double-cab utes, SUVs, low taxes and ‘small target’ political strategies.”

The moment the Prime Minister and her Cabinet colleagues register that their Maori caucus, the Greens, and Te Paati Maori are serious about carrying through a revolution in New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements – and what endorsing such revolutionary proposals is likely to do for Labour’s poll-ratings – they will execute a policy handbrake-turn of Tokyo Drift proportions.

Jacinda, herself, could profitably ponder the reasons behind Helen Clark’s description of the Maori nationalist movement as “haters and wreckers”. Even a moderate centre-leftist like Clark, could not avoid the painful impact of the first great wave of identity politics that swept through progressive politics in the late-1970s and early 1980s. To know the founding zealots of the Maori Sovereignty movement was not necessarily to love them – or their programme!

Jacinda’s easy acceptance of the new ethnic orthodoxy – so perfectly embodied in the outpourings of Meng Foon – points not to her wholesale conversion to the Maori nationalist cause, but to its impressive institutional advance. The successful implementation of a succession of superficially harmless measures (e.g. the substitution of ‘Aotearoa’ for ‘New Zealand’) will, should it ever achieve “critical mass”, precipitate a nationalist victory. The relentless accumulation of these “minor” reforms confirms the essential truth of the “slowly boiled frog” fable.

That said, those people on the Left who put their faith in a “generational fix” to the problems “caused” by ethnic privilege should, perhaps, ask themselves the following questions:

“Will the tens-of-thousands of middle-class teenagers who poured out onto the streets in support of Greta Thunberg’s call for action on Climate Change, really be willing, as young adults, to give away all hope of living as their parents lived?

“Do they really see their fathers, brothers, cousins and boyfriends giving up their cars, their double-cab utes, their SUVs?

“Are they willing to abandon the dream of one day attaining the blissful suburban security they grew up in?”

There’s a scene in the movie Dr Zhivago where the hero and his family return to Moscow to discover their elegant bourgeois mansion occupied by dozens of poor families. The local Communist Party representative primly announces that the building which once housed a few privileged individuals now provides shelter to many working-class families. She fixes him with a basilisk glare, daring him to disagree. Zhivago looks around at the squalid, over-crowded and unsanitary sink of poverty that his family home has become, and summons up a smile: “Yes”, he says, “this new arrangement is much better – much fairer.”

Those who unthinkingly endorse the formulaic imprecations against systemic racism pouring from Meng Foon’s mouth, should remember that scene. Revolutions do not always fail, but they do not always improve matters, either. In the name of social justice, the poor and the marginalised may seize the big houses of the rich, but they cannot live in them as the rich lived in them. Nor will they be taken without a fight.

Aotearoa was seized from the Maori at gunpoint by the Pakeha. History suggests that New Zealand will only be reclaimed from the “colonisers” by the application of similar force. But those eagerly anticipating such an ethnic revolution should understand that the country which emerges from it will be neither Aotearoa nor New Zealand, but something else. And the new arrangement won’t necessarily be better – or fairer.

This essay was originally posted on The Daily Blog of Friday, 12 March 2021.


AB said...

I think you are catastrophising again Chris - over-egging a minor re-balancing of our national myth into a slightly different myth, and seeing it as some sort of revolution.

Kat said...

"Take a pinch of white man
Wrap him up in black skin
Add a touch of blue blood
And a little bitty bit of red Indian boy
Oh like a Curly Latin kinkies
Oh Lordy, Lordy, mixed with yellow Chinkees, yeah
You know you lump it all together
And you got a recipe for a get along scene
Oh what a beautiful dream
If it could only come true, you know, you know
What we need is a great big melting pot
Big enough enough enough to take
The world and all its got And keep it stirring for a hundred years or more
And turn out coffee coloured people by the score
Rabbis and the friars
Vishnus and the gurus
We got the Beatles or the Sun God
Well it really doesn't matter what religion you choose
And be thankful little Mrs. Graceful
You know that livin' could be tasteful
We should all get together in a lovin machine
I think I'll call up the queen
It' s only fair that she knows, you know, you know
What we need is a great big melting pot
Big enough enough enough to take
The world and all its got And keep it stirring for a hundred years or more
And turn out coffee coloured people by the score........."

Well we are all drinking enough coffee so anything could happen.

On the change of name from New Zealand to Aotearoa, that is unlikely to happen, think Key/flag change. Nah

g said...

I have just been looking at youtube and came across one that sounded interesting. - The Super Mario Effect - (haven't heard about it before).

It was all about learning something that required concentration, and once learned could be tested. There were two different angles that the recipients were measured on. One was that if you lost you would lose 5 points, but could try again. The other gave a simple message that You have failed with an invitation to try again. 52% of the points-losing tryers finally succeeded, but 68% of those who lost nothing, just invited to try again, succeeded.

There were other aspects that were studied. The end result seemed to be that people will keep trying if concern about failing is not foremost in their minds. Perhaps if we can get beyond this racism thing, and being called out all the time for misdemeanours, but be asked to do better to achieve a happier, less riled society, we would succeed. Finding fault all the time with people who don't pass a narrow test set by the Super-Righteous, is not getting to the 'heart' of the matter. It would be good to give it a try and explain why; that it would lead to a society with less nastiness where most people felt capable, strong, fulfilled etc.

What we don't need is hyper-sensitised people pecking at us all like hens looking for insects.
Try reading about the Holocaust or something really awful, and think about the viciousness that those people endured. Then everybody try being fairer to everybody; put a guard on your tongue and look for what is good in the other. Apart from some deeply warped people, most have redeeming qualities. It wouldn't mean that we would all like each other! But to look for small ways to get through to the self-centred of all classes and races would make a huge difference in society.

I suggest the Human Rights Commissioner and the Woke Enclave step back from creating more misery than we have, and concentrate effort on making people's lives better. The thought for each day would be, 'Do something thoughtful and helpful for another person, and if that person can recognise it as such, please pick up that thought and do some helpful thing for another. Spread it around.'

greywarbler said...

Substituting Aotearoa for the words New Zealand? New Zealand has done some good things, why abandon it as a name? It also is an identifier overseas, and part of our brand. Let's keep Aotearoa or some other one or two words that Maori prefer, as something for us to use when we are talking about ourselves and our spirit and culture. Immediately register that name as a unique trademark to stop the financially-obsessed from using it for some product, as happened with Kiwi. Keep it for us I say.

New Zealand isn't a bad name in the world, and with it came Dutch and other Europeans who have learned to love the country and integrate us into the non-British world. Keep it - it's useful for business and can face up to detractors who point out falsities such as that we aren't 100% Pure which according to my newspaper is still being used! For those who love the land, we can talk amongst ourselves about the damage to the gifts of nature and the gift we have/had of a reasonably harmonious country where everyone felt they belonged and had a place to stand and live.

John Hurley said...

That scene in Dr Zhivago has stuck with me also and I have noticed Meng Foon: The Ethnocentric and Conservative Race Relations Commissioner.

Ricardo said...

Chris, there you go again. Reducing everything to a febrile existentialist revolutionary denouement.

I am sure most New Zealanders will politely agree with you and wish you luck, but the important thing is to be home for tea and in time to watch Married At First Sight.

David Stone said...

To a degree this is opportunism , pushing a special interest on the coattails of of an administration unusually popular for completely unrelated reasons. Yes I guess it could undermine that administration to destruction if not very carefully handled by Jacinda. It will be a test. But she is pretty bright.
It is always a balancing act for all of us. We all have sympathy for the maori who are since Rogernomics left out of the economy. Snd we all have some misgivings about how some of the land "transactions" were conducted: and wherever the wrongs can be righted without overwhelming further injustice we would all like to see that happen.
But is the more serious danger to the colonist's control of the country much more under pressure from mass migration? Or contemporary colonisation as Wayne Mapp aptly puts it. The argument between the original maori settlers and the largely British colonists which is a matter of incurable history is being use as a distraction via racism accusations to divert from the deliberate disenfranchisement of both parties by the policies of contemporary governments of both parties. It's like the parable of the two mice taking their cheese to the owl for a fair division of shares.

RedLogix said...

Awatere was correct, the political class are guilty of failing to take it seriously.

As you did in the 80's I became more familiar with the Maori nationalists than I ever expected to. What they would say in private about their aspirations for this country was far more radical than anything they would say in public - and this remains true even today.

Nick J said...

Seems to me that looking for racism, sexism, homophobia, gender bias is the new game of praising the emperors invisible new clothes. Those claiming we are overrun by this are todays equivalent of those claiming that the emperor is not naked.

What this proposes is that reality is subjective and can be whatever you can persuade people is real. A classic example is modern advertising that proposes a product as a pathway to a particular nirvana.

In a prior column looking at Germany and authoritarianism I mentioned Taylors thesis that Luther and Hitler rejected the culture of the West in favour of an imagined mythical German tribal past. We all know where that lead to.

Here in NZ we have and are trying to build the semblance of a cohesive modern state with opportunity and fairness for all. What we are being asked is however to view both Pakeha and Maori history as the emperors new clothes when it is no such thing. Reality is that neither proposed past is fit for purpose and reality will intervene in the form of a future car crash if false pasts are allowed to justify proposed future.

Rick said...

It was not part of their blood,
It came to them very late,
With long arrears to make good,
When the Saxon began to hate.

It was not preached to the crowd.
It was not taught by the state.
No man spoke it aloud
When the Saxon began to hate.


petes new write said...

A lot of words, but pakeha are still the majority here in NZ with 70% of the population.

Guillaume said...

I believe that Jacinda Ardern and her colleagues promote a deliberate agenda that facilitates the rise of Maori nationalism. Although the rationale remains unclear divisive incremental changes succeed because the mass of the population, the majority, remain unaware. Most sense a continuance of the market status quo.

If these undemocratic policies and actions are forced into the public domain to the extent that they are in contention at the next general election, then the majority's feelings and wishes will be revealed.

Examples worldwide show the consequences for internally divided nations, and such should serve as a warning to New Zealand.

greywarbler said...

Red Logix
It is just talk about what could be done, as it is talk what the white supremacists would like to do. Encourage discussion in various venues around the country, let people have a say and then present the question 'What is he best thing to do to facilitate a better future for the different groups.' Eventually wild talk has to be grounded like lightning, or we all get burned.

I love listening to Jonathan Pie rant - he is right so often in my opinion - and must be allowed to express his distaste that echoes that of others. The BBC is apparently doing what it can to diminish people's comments about change, banning even. Bottled up rage is ugly when it explodes; and remorseless when it has control with major faults to be remedied and atoned for.

Tuhoe Maori were spied on and listened to in their private talk which was used as an excuse for intervention by police. What is said in free discussion is not set to explode in violence. The ones to watch are the plotters with diseased brains ready to grab onto the latest opportunity for their advantage.

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"Those claiming we are overrun by this are todays equivalent of those claiming that the emperor is not naked."
At the risk of a bit of what aboutism. What about those who claim we are being overrun by the "gay agenda/lifestyle", the "cancel culture", "socialism", "feminazis", "Islamists"?
Are they not just as guilty? Or are they just naked?
What about those who take one or two throwaway lines from someone on the left fringe, and claim we're all going to be murdered in our beds because of it?
Are they not guilty of alarmism?
What's the opposite of "woke"? Asleep? Aslope? Brain-dead?

John Hurley said...

The Detail (as in the devils in the detail) is redacted and the Hard Stuff (Nigel Latta - New NZ) is a plaster over. The MSM starts from a highly slanted POV. People opposed to Maori Wards are "branded as racist". Why not "one side claims the other's position is racist"?

Principle 1 : Accuracy, Fairness and Balance

I waited to hear someone from the other side and imagined it in terms of columns For and Against. I labelled Simon Wilson as For. Simon Wilson debated Elliot Ilkelei and Don Brash at Auckland University.

We simply received a point of view that took left-wing bullet points as givens.

The Barron said...

Whiggish history belongs to a past generation. The philosophical and scientific European enlightenment does not always stand up to scrutiny when looked at in regard to slavery, colonialism, racism, gender and class. We should remember Locke took part in administering the slave-owning colonies, owned stock in slave plantations and wrote the constitution of Carolina. His thesis used for justification for colonization and the Crown taking Maori land. Hegal, Kant and most German philosophers deeply racist. Darwin did not believe women's brains equal that of men. That is not to say we can not draw from the enlightenment, but we should do so with a critical analysis not a romantic one.
I am not sure if Chris' central argument holds up. We have to be careful not to dismiss New Zealand nationalism as 'Maori nationalism'. Belich notes the colonists view that they were the 'better Britons' coalesced with a 'better natives' (partly inspired by Tregear's Aryan Maori).
As Belich noted of the NZ at the turn of the 20th century -
'Popular culture freely co-opted Maori symbols, initially with little sense of their having living owners. Pakeha hockey teams and children were given Maori names; Maori motifs featured large in public competitions to design national emblems; 'kia ora' was advocated as a Pakeha greeting; and 'Maorilanders' became a populist by-name for European New
Zealanders. Pakeha musicians and artists in the decades around 1900 were fascinated by Maori subjects, as was the country' s leading woman photographer, Margaret Matilda White. 'Her fascination with Maoridom led to her most disturbing image; a self-portrait with a moko painted on her chin.'
Generations of New Zealanders have done their OE to London, or live in Australia. Toanga and Koiwi on every neck. Te Reo naturally dropped into phraseology, haka performed in pubs and every sporting event. While this is cultural appropriation, it is also a reverse assimilation that was not anticipated by Ralph Hannon.
National identity has developed by looking to that which is unique and indigenous to these islands and the Pacific. This is not formed by a Protocols of the Elders of Hiona, it is simply New Zealanders from all backgrounds looking to define who we are in a post-colonial world.
If there is any substance to socio-cultural acknowledgement, then it should not be surprising that many are now understanding a socio-political context.

Maori will say that you walk backwards into the future. Conceptionally and in substance, the Whiggish historians are in the back mirror.

Nick J said...

To use your term GS, yes "brain dead". Seeing and denying reality is a common issue, its not exclusive to any viewpoint. Reality however is unwavering. Sort of "real". Good isn't it.

Patricia said...

Does it have to be a revolution? Change always happens and it doesn’t have to be violent. They are us and we are them. Each generation is different from its parents. Some times better and sometimes, as now, worse off. But whether that difference makes a generation better or worse depends on government policies. We have had neo liberal governments since the 1984 and the consequences of that ideology can be seen today. But it can be different and that is totally dependent on government. We are lied to by economists and politicians as to what can or can’t be done. Whenever a politician says ‘where is the money coming from’ you know they are lying.

John Hurley said...

The Barron said...
The philosophical and scientific European enlightenment does not always stand up to scrutiny when looked at in regard to slavery, colonialism, racism, gender and class.
That's the modus operandi of Critical Theory. Nothing stands up to scrutiny. Post-colonial theory tries to have it's cake and eat it nevertheless. Jess Berentson-Shaw manages to be pro Linda Smith and "our truth" while embracing science and "good information".

David George said...

It is difficult to get a handle on the ends envisioned by the Maori ethno nationalists, they rarely express it directly and cloud it in ambiguity when they do. The proliferation of Maori words in an English text tends to obfuscate rather than communicate, it's not as if there is insufficient choice or precision in English with fifty or a hundred times the words there are in Maori.

One of the favourite go to words is Rangatiratanga which can mean anything from guardianship right through to the exercise of chiefly authority, ownership, sovereignty, domination, rule, control and power. Where the wet liberal reads guardianship, a benign oversight, the activists means domination and control.

How that is expected to interact with notions of democracy, individual sovereignty, the rule of established civil and criminal law or in issues like international trade and investment is never explained for obvious reasons. We have this vastly complex web of cooperation and competition, the pretence that we would be better served by a system that evolved to serve a tribal, patriarchal, local, monocultural society with no contact or trade with the outside world is clearly absurd. Yet that is what is being seriously proposed by some.

Another line of attack is the assertion that Maori, and only Maori, have some divine insight hidden to all others that allows them to claim spiritual authority. Who can argue with that? We tend to greet revelations of divine spiritual insight with humility and respect, a "who am I to disagree on the nature of the immaterial" attitude. We expect the same humility in return from those making such claims. That respect is not on the agenda, the spiritual has been conscripted in the service of the temporal, the weaponisation of woo-woo for the ethno nationalist project.

The reluctance to call out this Maori Zionism is shameful but understandable, the weapon du jour is the dreaded accusation of racism. Instead we play let's pretend, that it's all innocent, that the proponents are filled with nothing but good intentions. Nothing could be further from the truth.

David George said...

"No group guilt should be assumed - and certainly not of the multigenerational kind. It is a certain sign of the accusers evil intent and a harbinger of social catastrophe. But the advantage is that the ideologue, at little practical costs, can construe him or herself both as nemesis of the oppressor and defender of the oppressed. Who needs the fine distinctions that determination of individual guilt or innocence demands when such a prize beckons?"

Jordan Peterson, Rule 6: Abandon Ideology from Beyond Order 12 more rules for life

RedLogix said...


"Eventually wild talk has to be grounded like lightning, or we all get burned."

Very good, I like it a lot.

I guess my problem with so many claims being made on our intellectual space at the moment, is that they very frequently fail to be specific in what is being asked. Big vagues terms like 'decolonisation' remain just that - broad and vague. And when challenged on this, the usual answer is along the lines 'you have to trust our good intentions'.

I agree totally, open dialog is the only path forward, but in this era of self-censorship and cancel culture, the exact opposite is happening. Almost always the dissenting view is immediately labelled 'racist' and shut down. Anything spoken is support of modernity or Western civilisation is characterised as 'tainted by white supremacy'. None of this is going to be helpful - it's a naked power grab and speaks to some very bad intentions indeed.

Of course all groups in this debate have things to say that others do not want to hear, discomforting, challenging speech. Reconciliation demands they be said and listened to. Only then might we start to forgive and heal the dividing wounds of the past.

Anonymous said...

Chris, the problem is that what you are defending in opposition to "Maori sovereignty" is British sovereignty under an unelected foreign monarch. Nothing to do with the "enlightenment".
Meng Foon may be wrong about some things, Donna Awatere about a lot of things, but your passionate adherence to a doomed colonialist order simply makes you an anachronism.
Geoff Fischer

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"That's the modus operandi of Critical Theory. Nothing stands up to scrutiny. Post-colonial theory tries to have it's cake and eat it nevertheless. "

I couldn't agree more. Insurrectionists try to brand themselves patriots, racists call themselves "race realists", neo-Nazis are now Ethno-Nationalists. None of it stands up to scrutiny. Basically they're all just Nazis who have learned to colour inside the lines.

David George said...

The British monarchy is sovereign by consent of the people, we could abandon it and implement something else, or nothing at all Geoff. Some sort of Maori sovereignty is not one of the options that would hold broad appeal I wouldn't think. An unwelcome distraction at best.
Because of that element of popular consent, and in reality, it is the people that are the ultimate sovereign. The official sovereign is, therefore, a collective construct of the idea, a transcendent concept, of a higher but still collective authority represented symbolically by, and physically embodied in, the Queen.
There is a further layer to that concept in our acceptance that beyond parliament, beyond and above the symbolic sovereign is the ultimate authority of God. That we, the people, the government and the sovereign are ultimately subject to an incorruptible reality that is good, beautiful and, most importantly, true. That is why parliament has a prayer to God, a reminder that they are not the ultimate authority. God help us if they start believing they are.

John Hurley said...

Geoff Fischer
the problem is that what you are defending in opposition to "Maori sovereignty" is British sovereignty under an unelected foreign monarch. Nothing to do with the "enlightenment".

Nevertheless the most highly qualified candidate. This points out the chasm in thinking that is post-colonial theory. The idea that you do this, you do that but we did this and that also: "you don't get to NZ by chance" and "we had our own doctors and law and scientists". Specifically we have something for every modern situation: a unique solution for this specific geography more appropriate than what Europeans could offer.
Otago university tested mutton birder knowledge against science and found they could use sophisticated statically modelling [?] which put them way out in front. The Iwi allowed that if they could sit on the results.

For all Mediawatch's querying of Melisa Lee about $55m and not biting the hand that feeds you there is no acknowledgement that it is ideology that is the issue here. Norm Kirk would be too far right for NZ First these days?

BTW Jeeves told me left wing academics also have 3 or 4 rental properties. Jeeves doesn't want to be identified. No wonder they can also be such good chaps, those South Ak brown chaps really do deserve the vaccine first (Jeeves might have misunderstood that?). Jeeves is himself working class M'Lord.

greywarbler said...

Red Logix I agree that examples need to be given for general headings of exemplary behaviour. I agree that far too often it just registers with something in an individuals's mind and then there is shock when put into practice - that's not what I meant at all is the cry.

Also the finger-pointing about people's expressed thoughts such as racist, is damning by labelling before there can even be dialogue. It's bad faith communication. I am thinking at present that there is a new Puritanism being forced on us. If so, who could be considered our Oliver Cromwell following similarly to his 1600s stirring; our leader or upstanding dominant person in this mish-mash NZ struggle?

Guerilla Surgeon said...

"Some people are out to lose, and the more people they can take with them, the better. You know when Hitler died he committed suicide in a bunker way down below in Berlin whilst Berlin was on fire, and Europe was burning. You know it's like as far as I can tell that was exactly what Hitler was after right from the beginning."

Well if we going to be quoting stupid Jordan Peterson quotes, he's a great one, that shows again that once outside of his area of expertise he knows SFA. And given his diet, mental illness, and alternative medicine treatment, maybe he's not so good within his area of expertise either. Although to be fair he's not a dietician. :)

Neil Keating said...

Geoff. The debate merits a wider historical backdrop than just the 'doomed [British] colonialist order' and their political heritage. There comes to my mind the old adage: philosophy from the Greeks, law from the Romans, theology from the Hebrews. Let's revisit the Axial Age (c 400BC) and work our way forward again.

greywarbler said...

GS Don't be too hard on Jordan Peterson - he tries to help people understand their motivations and look at another another way that would be better for them. He might be able to help you too, if you just give him a chance!! Anyway he is trying, even if you find him very trying.

I looked at one of his dissertations on youtube the other day on Rights and Responsibilities. He thought there was too much emphasis on Rights, say demanded in protests on the streets. What then about Responsibilities that are the balance to Rights? Do we want everything easily, provided by others without doing some hard yards ourselves and helping to make society work and able to provide the services that people consider they have a Right to. I think that was the message, have to listen again and check. But that is the sort of thing you would agree with GS isn't it?

greywarbler said...

Neil K I hadn't come across the Axial Age. But in line with my dawning realisation that we go round in circles, repeating learning the hard way, perhaps going back to that Age and brushing off the dust would help with our thinking. I have already noticed similarities to the brash move forward of this Tech and Metal Age, to the Industrial Mechanised Age, so what about further back when the intellectuals made big discoveries just using their own brains. Marvellous, let's try that again.

Guerilla Surgeon said...

Grey. Yes I agree with the idea that there is too much
emphasis on rights rather than responsibilities, but:

1. It's anodyne. And it's been said for a long time, over and over again.
2. Even a stopped clock shows the correct time twice a day. Unless it's a 24-hour clock of course in which case it's only right once.

Peterson does far too much damage with his pseudoscience to take any notice of his self-help homilies.

Anonymous said...

KiwiDave: "The British monarchy is sovereign by consent of the people"
No, British sovereignty was imposed in Aotearoa by Hobson's declaration, secured by British and Australian regiments in the wars of the nineteenth century, and is still enforced by measures such as the requirement that all members of parliament must pledge allegiance to the British Queen.
You can do as you wish, but we who have rejected British sovereignty will continue to do so and there is nothing you can do to force your choice upon us, not with all your guns, your security forces, your foreign allies and your corrupt apparatus of government.
We will be more than "An unwelcome distraction" to you KiwiDave. We will be the undoing of your system.
Geoff Fischer