Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Fiona MacKenzie: Riding Roughshod Over Middle NZ

Our politicians, bureaucrats and journalists are struggling to stay in touch with Middle New Zealand. Many of them think it’s unnecessary. After all, they hold the power to tell us what we ought to think and what we should endure.

The system usually works well for them. The Middlers keep to themselves, too busy with the day-to-day.

The problem arises when the people are actually allowed a voice. Referendums must be so frustrating to those who think “they know what’s good for us”.

Thanks to the binding nature of a couple of recent ones, New Zealand rejected a tea-towel flag and the New Plymouth Council won’t have race-based wards. If only citizen-initiated referendums didn’t have to jump so many hurdles and had the same binding status. The country might then get a few other things right.

Let’s Hear from Middle Maori

Another group we don’t hear much from are ‘Maori’. We certainly hear them referenced by those who want unquestioned control over government, natural resources and taxpayer funds, but it is hard to know who (other than themselves) these articulate and manipulative spokespeople actually represent.

Herald columnist, John Roughan, recently railed against Middle New Zealand for not getting with the programme and accepting that ‘Maori’ should be granted easy access to government power and control.  So again I ask, who are these ‘Maori’ who are entitled to unearned privilege and want to be separated out from the rest of us?

In photos from the latest family wedding, she’s fair and beautiful, he’s dark and handsome. So do they want to be separated within our very blended country? Their marriage suggests not. 

We are bombarded with what the politically devious, the self-serving and the disaffected think, but is it possible that Middle Maori could want and believe much the same as other Kiwis?

Mix of World Views

In New Zealand, ethnic-based differences are less obvious than economic ones. Our many skins tones mix and mingle. People classified as Maori (by themselves or others) range widely − from very dark brown to red haired and blued eyed! There are those who work hard, those who never lift a finger. There are those who help their families, their communities and New Zealand to prosper. Then there are others who prefer to obstruct, intimidate and bully. Some want to embrace opportunities to create regional jobs; others resist any change or cooperation.

Yet we’re constantly told that ‘Maori’ have a superior world view to the rest of us and are more entitled. Sure, we could just take this as gospel (which it’s fast becoming), but such a mantra can be difficult to fathom.

Is the superior world view that of the guy throwing litter from a car, or of the bloke claiming to have a guardianship role over the environment? Is it that of a parent who neglects or abuses a child, or that of the dad coaching his kid’s sports team?

And are the world views of New Zealanders volunteering to plant trees, deal to possums, save Kiwis or provide community services any less valuable because they have no Maori blood?

There are all sorts in our country and while our politicians, bureaucrats and journalists only listen to the noisy activists, they may just be missing out on what the people in the middle really think.

Term Limits & Referenda

People in the middle tend to be the steady voice of practical reason – those who keep a country functioning and growing good future citizens. They know how things work and what goes on in real life. They’re not so easily persuaded by the latest trends and propaganda, being more interested in what people do than what they say. If only, the politicians, bureaucrats and journalists would listen to them and work in their best interests – rather than ride roughshod over them.

Perhaps term limits would facilitate this. Imagine if all our politicians and bureaucrats had to give up their day jobs after so many years at the trough. What a great leveller that would be! They could hit the streets, get an ordinary job and live on an ordinary income – anything that helps them reconnect.

More binding referendums on really important matters might help too. How about the fundamental issue of who should control water? Or whether investors should be able to create city housing crises? And whether all references to race and culture should be removed from the statute books?

If this could be achieved, we might well start living in a true democracy, where every person is equal to his/her neighbour.


Brian said...

Riding Roughshod...No surprise
Middle New Zealand is our silent majority, regretfully so silent and inactive as to threaten our very existence by its fear of instant publicity and chronic indoctrination of our Socialist State.
There is an endemic virus born with decades of a democratic idea that our elected, and now unelected representatives actually place our interests first and foremost. They do not, especially so, in this MMP environment that promotes loyalty to the Party as a prerequisite to power.
Surely we were given a blatant example of how Parliament as a whole works in its own interest, or in this case perhaps in the interests of a World Organisation. The vote on the “Smacking Referendum” was an example of just how much Middle New Zealand counts in the scheme of things. Then over 80% of our citizens vote overwhelmingly for the right of parents to administer light physical punishment. IT WAS IGNORED BY PARLIAMENT.
One might ask the question WHY? Was it a factor that this was contrary to a United Nations decree? Or was it, that to stand up against such a vast bureaucracy we needed actually Politicians of stamina and honesty and not ones which make only the easy decisions.
The latter seems to be evident over the last decades; and poses the question of how must actual control of this country has passed out of our hands into the control of the United Nations?
Fiona MacKenzie is right, middle New Zealand is under represented in every facet of our society, yet it is the backbone of the economic prosperity that we all enjoy. It suffers from the affliction of a surfeit of journalistic bias in a media controlled by those who are disaffected, lazy and mainly by “Those who know what we want, and what is good for us”.
Last Year celebrated the 800 year anniversary of Magna Carta circa 1215 and its more substantial re-issue of 1216. (Incidentally we were under represented at this celebration, and it was down played very much so by our Media)
That culminated centuries later in our right to vote into power our Representatives. Thus bringing to an end a Feudal system which had dominated since the Middle Ages. Yet we now find a recurrence of this system (for Feudal read Appointment) trying to be introduced in our Local Government.
Never has there been a whimper of dissent from our Parliament over this, which itself should be paramount in up- holding our democratic right to a vote. Due no doubt in part, to its own make up which would signal Hypocrisy! As nearly half our M.P.’s are “List appointments”. That we, the general public voted for!
Great Blog Fiona, Wonder how many of our Members of Parliament will read this and dismiss it on the grounds of loyalty to the Party first and foremost?

Collin Bl said...

Thanks Fiona - good one.
Middle NZ must get 'on stage' and become more vocal and counter all the MSM regurgitated garbage!

Anonymous said...

It was Brits and other europeans that developed NZ while Maori's were killing each other, Maori wanted the treaty to stop the bloodshed, they were not the first here anyway. Maori are taught from a young age that they are warriors hence so much violence among young Maori. Look at the names of children that have been killed,that says it all.

Andrew C said...

I cannot agree more but how do we get middle NZ to stand up and say something. Do we need to protest by having rally's and marches I am all for it. It is time to speak out against separatism and the Maori agenda.

Anonymous said...

Radical [part-] Maori “brown necks” and their post-colonial-guilt-tripping white liberal enablers want to believe that most New Zealanders see nothing wrong with [part-] Maori privileges; and that it is only a handful of benighted “racists” who object.


Some poll results:

-82% No to compulsory Maori language in schools (Yahoo Xtra poll).
-96% of non-Maori students of Year 9 and above do NOT learn Maori despite it being an available option in many schools (NZ Herald, 23 July 2014).
-85% No to special Maori housing (Bay of Plenty Times, 20 April 2013).
-81% No to “Maori are special” (Close Up poll, July 2011).
-81% No to Maori names for North Island and South Island (Stuff poll, 2 April 2013).
-82% No to “h” in Wanganui (Referendum conducted by Wanganui District Council, 2006).
-79% No to a special Maori voice on the committees of Rotorua Council (Rotorua Daily Post, 9 May 2014).
-82% No to special Maori wards on New Plymouth Council (Taranaki Daily News, 15 May 2015).
- 79% No to Maori wards, Waikato District Council, April 2012.
-80% No to Maori wards, Hauraki District Council, May 2013.
-79% No to Maori wards, Nelson District Council, May 2012.
-52% No to Maori wards, Wairoa District Council, March 2012 (high proportion of [part-] Maori voters).
-68% No to Maori wards, Far North District Council, March 2015 (high proportion of [part-] Maori voters).
-70% want Maori wards in local government abolished (Consumerlink, Colmar Brunton poll, March 2012).
-68% want the Waitangi Tribunal abolished.

So on average, around 20 % (one in five) New Zealanders think [part-] Maori should have special privileges. Around 80% (four in five) do not. This, of course, includes many New Zealanders of Maori descent.

But it is the 20% that have captured the public debate, with their false narrative of “victimhood” and “oppression,” their lying revisionist version of “history,” and their mob shouting down all opposition, no matter how reasoned and principled, as “racist” and “bigoted.”

Most of the 80% who privately disagree with Maori privilege won’t say so publicly, because all the noise in the public square leads them to believe that a majority agrees with Maori privilege. They’re cowed into silence for fear of social marginalisation for not holding group-approved attitudes.

But they’re not alone. They are in fact a substantial majority, though they have yet to realise it. Some of us have been doing this a long time and we will help the silent majority to see that there are people prepared to stand up and be counted. We will not be silenced, and we will eventually win the day.

As Edmund Burke reminds us: “Because half-a-dozen grasshoppers under a fern make the field ring with their importunate chink, whilst thousands of great cattle, reposed beneath the shadow of the British oak, chew the cud and are silent, pray do not imagine that those who make the noise are the only inhabitants of the field; that of course they are many in number; or that, after all, they are other than the little shrivelled, meagre, hopping, though loud and troublesome insects of the hour.”

Anonymous said...

As Frantz Fanon, one of the many disreputable Communists enshrined as intellectual icons by the academic Left, reminds us: “The native is an oppressed person whose constant dream is to become the persecutor.” What is often referred to as “the Treaty Grievance Industry” perhaps better understood as an”Indigenous Pretender Grudge Industry.”

Eric Hoffer offers a similarly penetrating insight into the group mind: “The less justified a man is in claiming excellence for his own self, the more he will claim it for his race, his religion, his Holy Cause.” When people say: “I’m proud to be [part-] Maori” that’s as stupid as saying: “I’m proud to have red hair” or “I’m proud to be left-handed.” These are accidents of birth. True pride comes from personal achievement: making a sports team; graduating from University; running a marathon; becoming an Olympic champion or an All Black; turning an idea into a successful business; going without to save a deposit for a home; raising happy, successful children who work hard and stay out of jail etc.

The psychological roots of Treatyism may well amount to little more than the hurt child looking for someone to punish. The rest of us should not be obliged to validate someone else’s adjustment issues. Nor should public policy support the notion that anyone who is less than half-Maori be regarded as “Maori.” And nor should it dignify their cultural pretensions, particularly with other people’s money.

Lizzie Marvelly claims on her Facebook page to be “Ngati Whakaue.” If she wasn’t so noisy about this ancestral connection, nothing in her appearance would suggest she was part-Maori. This young woman might better be described as a Pakeha with a dash of Maori blood. The standard response when such an inconvenient truth is held up is: “Maori will decide who is ‘Maori.’”

In a free society, individuals are at liberty to enter into groups or combinations for any lawful purpose. Indeed, many choose to do so. There are rugby clubs, bowling clubs, bridge clubs, film clubs, swingers’ clubs, various religious congregations, and any number of other organisations catering to the sporting, cultural, intellectual, and spiritual needs of members.

The right of an individual of mixed European-Maori descent to identify with Maori culture and affiliate to a Maori kin group is not in dispute here. But since this is a personal choice and thus a private matter, Maori groups rightly have the same status as any other community group founded upon principles of voluntary association, such as a rugby club or a bowling club.

And the same moral right as the members of a rugby club or bowling club to demand large sums of money and political patronage from their fellow New Zealanders.


maic said...

We have had this conversation before. Politicians ignore middle and conservative voters because they believe they have a captive cliental. Nothing is going to change unless and until the ignored voters abandon National and give their moral, political and financial support either to a minor Party or to a competent and honest Independent.
Readers following the current Australian election campaign may have read or viewed poll information that currently 15% of voters will no longer support the main Parties.
In the United States millions of voters led by Donald Trump have rebelled against the incompetent and self serving political class. In Britain there is a good chance that millions of voters will ignore the pleadings of their political class and take Britain out of the EU. They want to take back control of their country.
In New Zealand there is a sense that we have control of our country but we definitely do not have control of our politicians - apart from booting them out at election time. As long as middle and conservative voters keep returning non representing politicians to government we will continue to have the scenario of deafness and blindness from those who are supposed to listen to us and to actually represent our concerns and our values.