Monday, October 24, 2022

Chris Trotter: Jackson's Trap.

Willie Jackson is caught in a trap of his own making. Three groups, tasked in April with developing a detailed plan for implementing the provisions of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) have steadfastly refused to play the bureaucratic game the Minister for Māori Development has forced upon them. In essence, they have delivered Jackson an offer neither he, nor the Cabinet, can accept. Their “Declaration Plan”, clearly politically unacceptable, has been kept under wraps for months.

Non-plussed, Jackson asked the plan’s authors: unidentified representatives of Te Puni Kokiri, Pou Tikanga (Iwi Leaders Group) and the Human Rights Commission; to present a revised document for Cabinet’s consideration by July. With November fast approaching, the document’s authors have yet to respond. It is difficult to interpret this tardiness as anything other than a deliberate effort to run down the clock on Jackson. The Declaration Plan’s authors appear confident that their failure to adhere to the Minister’s consultative timetable will make it virtually impossible to organise an effective public response prior to the 2023 General Election.

Clearly, a high-stakes hand of political poker is being played out here. It is hard to interpret the Declaration plan’s authors’ failure to meet Jackson’s deadline as anything other than an act of deliberate defiance. What has prompted their non-compliance?

The most obvious answer is to be found in the unusual ordering of the “Declaration Plan’s” preparation. Rather than gather a broadly representative group of cultural, political and legal experts to develop a blueprint for UNDRIP’s implementation – something in the nature of a Royal Commission of Inquiry – Jackson initiated a round of consultations with Māori groups across the country, and then tasked TPK, the Iwi Leaders Group and the HRC with producing a “first draft” of the results. Once endorsed by Cabinet, this draft Declaration Plan was to be presented to the whole population of New Zealand for consideration, comment, and revision.

Now, any Māori ethno-nationalist worthy of the name will immediately recognise Jackson’s action-plan as a crude mechanism for forcing tangata whenua to water-down their proposals to the point where a Pakeha-dominated Cabinet will find them acceptable. This signed-off Declaration Plan must then be subjected to all the slings and arrows of Pakeha racism – the mouthpieces of which will undoubtedly demand even more watering-down. By the time the process is complete, New Zealand’s plan for implementing UNDRIP will be so anodyne that even Jair Bolsonaro could give it the thumbs-up!

It is worth recalling at this point that a comprehensive “Declaration Plan” already exists. Commissioned by the then Minister of Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, in 2019, the He Puapua report, sets forth a step-by-step process for bringing Aotearoa into full compliance with UNDRIP by 2040 – the 200th anniversary of the signing of te Tiriti o Waitangi.

Kept under wraps by Jacinda Ardern’s government, He Puapua was clearly regarded as far too radical to be placed before the New Zealand electorate in 2020. When, inevitably, the document found its way into the public domain, the newly-elected Labour Government was quick to deny that its proposals were – or would ever be – in any way driving Government policy. The Prime Minister curtly ruled-out He Puapua’s plan for a Māori upper-house of Parliament.

The institutions brought together by Jackson can hardly have missed the unspoken terms-of-reference underpinning their endeavour. Under no circumstances were they to present a Declaration Plan as radical as He Puapua. Not only that, but Matike Mai Aotearoa: Independent Working Group on Constitutional Transformation, an impressive consultative exercise in its own right, commissioned by the Iwi Leaders Group, and conducted under the guidance of the late Moana Jackson, which, itself, provided powerful inspiration for the authors of the He Puapua report, was also to be consigned to the “too-radical” basket. So constrained, the authorial group might as well have subtitled their Declaration Plan “Uncle Tom’s Report”.

Nevertheless, the institutions tasked with drawing up the Declaration Plan had no option but to serve. That being the case they seem to have agreed that the whole exercise should either produce a document worthy of UNDRIP, or, if that proved impossible, come to nothing.

This is what they appear to have done. Jackson was presented with a Declaration Plan which, almost certainly, incorporated the core ideas of both Matike Mai and He Puapua. Given the extent of consultation within Maoridom which preceded and informed the Matike Mai working-group’s report; and in light of the courageous creativity of He Puapua, the draft Declaration Plan’s authors could hardly have done otherwise. By any reasonable measure, Matike Mai and He Puapua are the truest reflection of the Māori ethno-nationalist position. If Jackson’s group didn’t back-up the work already done, then they risked being written-off as latter-day kupapa.

Jackson, meanwhile, is left holding a draft Declaration Plan he can’t present to Cabinet, and which its authors refuse to re-write. And, the clock is ticking. When he meets with the authors on Friday (21/10/22) what are Jackson’s options?

He could threaten to release their draft plan to the public, reasoning that the reaction of most Pakeha would be so negative that the whole process of fulfilling New Zealand’s obligations under UNDRIP would come to a shuddering halt. If he was feeling particularly embittered and Machiavellian, he could further argue that the racist backlash would be so powerful that the Government would have to abandon, at least temporarily, its whole co-governance agenda – Three Waters in particular. Could they not produce a document that would reassure Pakeha that UNDRIP was no threat: a document that would actually make the introduction of co-governance easier? Isn’t Māori control of water worth a little bit of watering-down?

Shrewd arguments, certainly, but they don’t get Jackson out of his trap. He simply can’t escape the fact that to meet the requirements of UNDRIP – let alone te Tiriti – the Crown will have to cede an unacceptably large amount of its sovereign power to Māori. As a Minister of that Crown, it is more than Jackson’s warrant is worth to place such a proposition upon the Cabinet Table. In the Realm of New Zealand there can be only one Crown.

Moana Jackson, the authors of He Puapua, and the authors of the draft Declaration Plan: all reached the same conclusion. Neither UNDRIP nor te Tiriti o Waitangi will ever be fully realised in the Realm of New Zealand. To fulfil the promises of these documents a wholly new kind of state will be required – one so radically different to the state New Zealanders presently inhabit, that their acceptance of it could only be secured in the conditions of a full-scale revolution.

And not even Willie Jackson can sell a full-scale revolution to this Labour Government.

Chris Trotter is a political commentator who blogs at


Anna Mouse said...

A full scale revolution now because the silent coup is failing?

The citizens of New Zealand are now fully awake to this monstrosity and will not be sold anything from snake oil salesmen.

We are ALL New Zealanders whether Jackson et al like it or not and most reasoned critical unbiased thinkers can see this for what it is.

A very simple power grab by a few 'elite' to return to an upgraded version of tribalised feudalism with the upgrades provided by the very government/colonial system that granted the power, nouse and worldly perspective to do so.

They wish in point, to deconstruct New Zealand that was socially, politically and economically stable into one that suits their lifestyles and everyone else can get 'stuffed'.

DeeM said...

"This signed-off Declaration Plan must then be subjected to all the slings and arrows of Pakeha racism..."

OR Chris, rational criticism and exposure for the terribly flawed, racist document it is.
Which falls under the term "racism", as employed by all members of the Labour cabinet these days, who have overseen making NZ one of the most overtly racist countries in the world.

Chris waxes lyrical about co-governance -"in light of the courageous creativity of He Puapua" -can we assume Chris supports the ethno-nationalist cause? However, he then points out "their acceptance of it could only be secured in the conditions of a full-scale revolution."

Along the lines of a Marxist revolution? Chris is a great admirer of Lenin, as evidenced by his previous article (which I didn't really get the point of, other than both guys were called Vladimir), so this may be a price worth paying for the author. Hard to tell.

Anonymous said...

Very similar to mein kampf isn't it, saying that maori are the superior race. It's disgraceful and racist. Willy jackson should be totally ashamed of himself. Gaslighting people by saying we are the racist ones if we don't accept his racism.

Nicholastwig said...

Thank you DeeM. It's taken me a while, but I begin to see the gist of Chris Trotter's argument. So, Maori are 'ethno-nationalists', and Pakeha are racist - yeah right. It's amusing really.
- and Anna Mouse - I'm with you completely.

Anonymous said...

Racism is often conflated by the Left with simple prejudice, which it is not.

Racism occurs wherever a group of people with an ethnocentric membership base creates or colonises a system to afford themselves separate, different,or superior rights on the basis of group membership.

When brown supremacist part-Maori who have elevated their Maori ancestors while turning their white ancestors into a toilet bowl bang on about ‘racism,’ they don’t mean getting rid of it.

Just placing it under new management.


When they bang on about ‘white supremacism,’ they don’t mean getting rid of ‘supremacism,’ just replacing it with brown supremacism.

But the brown supremacists and their post-colonial guilt-tripping white liberal enablers — the actual racists — have done a neat little bait-and-switch.

Black American political economist, Thomas Sowell, identified this wheeze as far back as 1988: “Sixty years ago, it you believed everybody should play by the same rules and be judged by the same standards, you were a radical. Thirty years ago, you were a liberal. Today, you’re a ‘racist.’

So now, it’s not racism that makes you a racist, it’s opposition to racism.


What is oftern referred to as “the Treaty Grievance Industry” might be better understood as “the Treaty Grudge Industry.”

Since the Maori phenotype tends to predominate as s determinant of appearance, there’s a raft of people who are identified by both their own and outsiders as Maori because they ‘look Maori’ —that is, they have brown skin and Polynesian features.

These people want utu against the ‘whiteness’ they’re shut out of because of how they look, despite in most cases being more European than Maori by blood quantum.

Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. As Commie racemonger, Frantz Fanon, reminds us: “The Native is an oppressed [sic] person, whose constant dream is to become the oppressor.”

We’re back under the house again, boobing our little hearts out when we realised the brown wouldn’t scrub off our skins.

Quite why public policy should validate someone else’s adjustment issues eludes me.

Those at the top of the brown supremacist pecking order have used those at the bottom of it to parlay their claims of ‘victimhood’ into financial and political patronage from their fellow citizens far in excess of their actual market value as productive human beings.

Brown supremacist part-Maori with branches up just one side of their family trees are filth on the face of my country.

If they get their ethno-state with the Treaty of Waitangi —or rather its bogus ‘principles’ — into a written Constitution, the only way to wind this back will be a civil war won by the good guys.

Labour misrepresents UNDRIP as a set of obligations set in concrete that it is obliged to implement.


UNDRIP is leftist puffery: a bunch of waffly aspirational statements drawn from Marxist-Leninist ‘National Question’ theory that are non-binding and lack an enforcement mechanism.

Even if we signed up to this horse wallop, we are actually obligated to do precisely nothing.

And that is exactly what we should be doing.

Rights in a free society flow to individuals on the basis of citizenship, not to groups on the basis of group membership.

Even someone who stuck their hand in the air at a town hall ceremony 30 seconds ago is a citizen, with all the of citizenship.

The prior arrival or ancestral longevity of some ancestors in the land is no basis for special privilege.

Brown supremacist part-Maori should be told their pidgin hobby language and atavistic cultural artefacts are a private matter for those who value them, and have no place in the public square or claim on the public purse.

“Do it in your own time and on your own dime,” as the Americans would say.

Shut the hell up, stop bleating and playing the race card, and get on with being New Zealanders.

To paraphrase Martin Luther King: “People tend to emphasise the colour of their skin when the content of their character is singularly lacking.

True for supremacists of any colour, really.

*** said...

The term ”co-governance” is a complete misnomer. The label does not match the description. It is not “co-governance”, it is “Disproportional Representation”.

However, when 17% of the population get 50% of the vote, even “Disproportional Representation” doesn’t quite cut it. A more accurate label is “Massively Disproportional Representation”.

Labels matter.

So does the label or name we use for our country. “Aotearoa” doesn’t work. If the government want an accurate label for our country in the language of our superior race, then I suggest we call it “Whakapakeha”. It is more descriptive of our country, especially when spoken aloud. Also, it is flexible, and can be split into two words, “Whaka Pakeha”.

Labels matter and everything is clearer when labels are accurate.