Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Clive Bibby: Is reparation enough or is there another way

I find it hard to work out what is fair compensation for misdeeds suffered by Maori at the hands of my ancestors.

Given that New Zealand appears to be the only country in the world taking its colonial history seriously enough that something more than an apology is offered to those whose tribal land was confiscated by the state, some would say that the Waitangi Tribunal process provides adequate access to justice.

Others, particularly the more radical elements of tribal leadership, want more - even on top of the “full and final” agreements entered into in “good faith” by both negotiating parties. And apparently, they are legally entitled to expect bonus payments as part of their specific deals. Is that fair?

What does this mean for the settlement process and its continuing influence on future race relations in this country?

Do we have to wait until those remaining claims like the ones still being negotiated when Nga Puhi and others finally decide what it is they want and expect to get?

It would seem that many of these documents are signed knowing that they are subject to a “top up” clause that is activated once the remaining claims are settled. This clause is designed to restore relativity to the amounts received by those who settled years ago but one might be forgiven for wondering whether there is a more calculated motif behind the delay in reaching agreement on the outstanding claims.

Surely, both sides must know that the longer we wait, the longer our future includes the involvement of what has become an expensive industry of its own when we should be putting this behind us and consigning the events of the past to history.

Some of the early settlers like Ngai Tahu have made excellent use of their settlement monies, using their combined skills to enrich their tribes at a far greater rate than any compensatory “top up” would provide.

So, let’s get this protracted farce out of the way and get on with dealing to things that should concern us all.

It is clear that the Nation’s efforts need to be concentrated on sorting out the problems associated with modern injustices, particularly insufficient investments in low decile communities and industries irrespective of race or feelings of entitlement.

Yet we are spending an inordinate amount of time debating issues that are the direct result of race based policies introduced in favour of a select few.

And the reason for this improbable distraction is because the government is captured by the woke elements of society who selfishly and arrogantly believe they have a mortgage on intelligent thought whether it involves race relations, climate change or any other manner of things that control our daily lives.

Why are these elitists not able to understand that we are fortunate to live in a country where all lives matter and we are each entitled to access equal opportunities under the law - at least that is the theme underpinning the original version of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Too bad that the evidence suggests these imposters have had their day in the sun and the people are preparing to take this country back.

Hopefully a new administration will work quickly to restore the balance where individuals and communities can use their God given talents, inherited and/or state sponsored wealth to benefit those whose care is our combined responsibility.

Included in that mix will be those who have decided to move on, learning from the past dual heritage towards a shared future.

Already the signs are emerging that the new order will be a reflection that the current divisive policies will not be tolerated. It was a misguided experiment that was doomed to failure before it started but unfortunately Covid got in the way. Otherwise we would not have condoned what has become a crippled economy struggling from self inflicted wounds.

Regrettably, it has not been the kiwi way. But we will emerge stronger for the experience. Let’s do it! 

Clive Bibby is a commentator, consultant, farmer and community leader, who lives in Tolaga Bay.


Janine said...

You hit the nail on the head with your observation that we are probably the only country in the world to have tried to " make up for past injustices". These radicals are now a bit like naughty children who, having been indulged with goodies from the cookie jar, just keep whinging for more and more until the harassed parent says..." enough!".

Enough is enough,no more Treaty settlements, there are many needy people in New Zealand apart from Maori. We need to look after all our vulnerable no matter what the skin colour. That is the mark of a true democratic society.

These radicals are just opportunists. Only vote for a party who declares us all equal in the eyes of the law. Be discerning with your vote Kiwis.

Jigsaw said...

Compensation - what for? Ngai Tahu never lost an acre - not a single one to any government action. They lost a lot to Te Rauparaha who had several rampages through part of their territory but then they did the same when they took the land off the previous owners. They also sold land multiple times. Chiefs who didn't live in an area sold land that was not under their control.
Ngai Tahu asked for government compensation in 1880, 1920 and again in 1944 and each time got more and more out of the government. All told they have had 5 or 6 settlements depending on how you regard them.
They are NEVER satisfied and will not be until at some point we say NO to any more.
Clive - you are sounding more and more like the National party making excuses instead of saying NO- the whole gravy train is over- that's it, there is NO MORE!

Ray S said...

Absolutely correct Clive.
Unfortunately, I believe that in the future, anything to with Maori will be based entirely on politics, no matter the need, the equity and no matter who is in government.
Consigning treaty settlements to history would be a bridge too far for any government. An Maori would have no part of it.
As for treaty top ups, that is a rort bigger than the treaty itself.
Perhaps Maori might like to have the country back exactly as it was when the first settlers arrived here. Unlikely in the extreme.

Paul said...

You are right Clive, " the current divisive policies will not be tolerated. I just hope enough of the general population are aware of what is going on. Unfortunately I don't quite think that National will turn things around enough, given their past record on these matters!

Doug Longmire said...

I saw Kelvin Davis recently complaining that a land theft from one of his ancestors is an unsettled grievance, and this has affected his life since.
Well - Davis is a millionaire in a highly paid job with secure subsidized superannuation.
But his complaint and the on going Treaty Grievance Industry raises this point:-
Surely it is time to leave the grievances of ancestors back in history and start living in the world today. For example, during the Second World War, the Nazis and the Japanese imperialists committed huge slaughter, rape, torture, genocide on millions of innocent citizens.
That was 70 -80 years ago. But we (the civilised world) has moved on.
We do not punish Japanese or German people of today for those war crimes. We are not still whining and demanding more and more payment for those (historical) crimes committed by their grandparents.
There is no future in living in the past and blaming current generations for past wrongs.

Empathic said...

Going by the polls many commentators are confidently predicting a change in government next year. But don't be surprised if Jacinda and co manage to jerrymander the electoral system sufficiently to stay in power. Giving 17% of the population much more than 17% of the say will benefit the party those voters always support and will do so even more as their elite profit greatly from Labour's co- government processes.

Geoffrey said...

What seems always to be missed is that the “claims process” is a business and no businessman willingly undermines his trade. Therefore, unless the target of his marketing ceases to buy, it will endure indefinitely. So we need to stop buying or cease to engage in serious discussion with simple opportunists. Simple really, just say “No”.

Don said...

All land lost by Maori to the Crown is described as "confiscated" but surely much of it was "forfeited"? In the latter case the forfeiture is a penalty
for breaking a law like a fine. Many tribes broke the law by going to war with the Crown and lost land as a result of their criminal actions. Somehow the word "forfeit" is seldom seen and "confiscation" implies that the land was lost for no good reason. If any research has been done on this the woke academics and dime-a dozen professors accompanying the Treaty gravy train have failed to reveal it.

Robert Arthur said...

Further to Doug Longmire's comment, MP Kelvin Davis in Herald 12th May issue reveals a colossal chip on his shoulder because state intervention apparently caused the failure of an ancestor's business in the 1840s. The venture was based on European presence; without which local warfare would likely have prevailed, and his ancestor possibly not. Davis relates tens of thousands of descendants to his ancestor and ventures that 80% are on the breadline. Over the decades many persons have had their business or employment ruined by government action but do not attribute to the event the outcomes for all subsequent descendants. Perhaps if, like the descendants of many colonists, Davis' ancestor's had moderated their fecundity, and moved about in pursuit of work, they would have fared better in the post stone age world.

Anonymous said...

Given that all Maori are now part Maori, the 'ancestors', referred to are also their own ancestors. Look up what Dr Thomas Sowell says about that. This grievience nonsense has got to stop. These people are taking the taxpayers for suckers and the politicians that pander to them are their 'useful idiots'. Maori should be extremely grateful that NZ was colonized by the British and give careful thought to how they would have been treated by, for example, the portugese, the french, the dutch, the Japanese.