Are National Party voters the new Trump supporters of the South Pacific?


Screen Shot 2016-04-02 at 6.42.53 pm


With the cult of no personality that surrounds John Key like a cargo cult minus the cargo, National keep bumping 50% in the polls. Key’s vacant aspiration and empty optimism slips into our laid back culture of anti-intellectualism as smoothly as an Edge Radio promo leads into Ben & Jono on TV3.

His laid back casual fascism aimed at the poor keeps a middle class pretence of moderation while cutting crony capitalism deals and building tax havens.

That a right wing money trader should exploit the power of Office shouldn’t shock or surprise us, but the widespread devotion to him by so many should.

- Sponsor Promotion -

National voters don’t care about mass surveillance lies. They don’t care about the filthy tactics exposed in Dirty Politics, they don’t care about him touching a young woman repeatedly at work, they don’t care he’s built a tax haven, they don’t care he screams the Opposition support rapists, they’re relaxed about social poverty.

Bryce Edwards paints a bleak picture...

Remember Dirty Politics? And Dotcom’s Moment of Truth? Both these 2014 scandals contained striking revelations about how the political establishment works. Yet the revelations certainly didn’t appear to have a negative political impact on the National Government. Despite the huge debates and masses of media coverage, these scandals didn’t sink the Government, and in some respects might have helped National shore up its electoral support.

National voters resemble more and more like Trump supporters. They both have a blinding anger at having to be weighed down with other people’s circumstances. Neoliberalism tells us our success has nothing to do with hegemonic structures within society, it’s all just our own hard work. It’s seductive simplicity erodes solidarity and splinters us from the powerful who use division to keep us from being organised to stop them.




George Monbiot gets it…

Neoliberalism – the ideology at the root of all our problems

Financial meltdown, environmental disaster and even the rise of Donald Trump – neoliberalism has played its part in them all. Why has the left failed to come up with an alternative?

Bernard Hickey understands the political reality of a Government hell bent on doing nothing to stop the property bubble because it locks the property speculating middle class in goose step with National…

This Auckland housing crisis, or jamboree (depending on your point of view), seems not to have hurt the Government in the polls and it was notable the latest REINZ figures were welcomed as a sign of success by Prime Minister John Key and Finance Minister Bill English.

The not-so-dirty little secret of the politics of rampant house price inflation is it makes voters richer and happier.

They have more equity to reinvest in more rental properties, they can use the equity to build and run businesses and they can use their houses as ATMs for the odd holiday or two.

Renters don’t vote at nearly the same rate as property owners so politicians can easily preach that they are doing something about housing and safely do very little to stop the inflation.

Secretly, it suits them.

…and Gareth Morgan points out that it suits the rich to use NZ as a tax haven…

Morgan: Tax burden falling on NZ’s working class

Economist Gareth Morgan believes New Zealand could be missing out on up to 25 percent of total income tax because the rich aren’t paying their fair share.

Morgan also told The Nation it is possible to get global corporations like Apple and Facebook to pay more tax on what they earn here.

The Government collects about $30 billion per year in income tax, but Mr Morgan says that take could be much bigger. The figures come from a soon-to-be-published report from the Morgan Foundation.

Dr Morgan says the report on New Zealand’s current tax system shows that the burden is falling on middle- and working-class families.

…self-interested wilful ignorance has built a perfect storm that Key has exploited and it makes us a worse people.



  1. Don’t blame Key, blame the Labour party they are gutless, pathetic and have an economic policy that is close to Nationals.

    • So Labour are gutless because National are gutless?, you’ve been watching too much of Mike Hoskings endless running of interference for the Nats, and total dribble.

      • I neither listen to nor watch Hoskings or any of those morons that are on MSM. Labour are gutless because they have no policies to fix anything.

    • I agree. Fuck Labour , the gutless bastards. Remember, we pay their salaries too. How the fuck come Andrew little isn’t leading a work force revolution to bring down jonky ?

  2. On the issue of surveillance, Labour go along with all this bullshit as well, they won’t change any of that.

    • OK MICHAL –

      Your two posts suggest you don’t like Labour.

      Message received loud and clear.

      Bye bye.

      • Key’s vacant aspiration and empty optimism slips into our laid back culture of anti-intellectualism as smoothly as an Edge Radio promo leads into Ben & Jono on TV3.

        Labour are best now holding a early strategy Election winning forum with their two most important allies of NZ First & the Green Party in a combined focussed plan to demonstrate they are a credible opposition as the worst coming global economic crash approaches, now with every day we drift closer to the election.

        And if the opposition don’t plan for this now I forecast that Key may call a surprise snap election before the titanic economic slump arrives this year.

  3. It is time that all those New Zealand opinion-formers who “get it,” and there are plenty who do, Edwards and Hickey you cite as examples, but probably also people like Gareth Morgan, certainly Rod Oram and Brian Easton, perhaps Finlay McDonald, Kim Hill, Russel Norman, even John Campbell among, hopefully, many, actually put their hand up.

    Even Chris Trotter might like to decide if it is better to dare to be a Daniel or just another Cassandra.

    Watching the destruction of the moral underpinning of our society as we fragment into a nation of selfish, ignorant bigots should not just be a parlour game. It is serious and demands a serious response. To expose yourself to return fire requires courage. It is so much safer to make cynical, oblique comments from the sidelines. After all, none of the above suffer personally, either socially or materially, from the continuation of the status quo.

    But sometimes just a little courage is needed.

  4. As much as I detest National, Labour have been equally responsible for the state of NZ. Unless they promise to undo the damage done by neoliberalism they’ll never get the votes from the downtrodden.

    • Liberalism can be ok when done in an intelligent and progressive way, but National haven’t followed that path.
      Their style is more about cronyism, regression to primary industries, trashing the countries finances for the future to try and stay in as long as possible, blowing up dangerous house bubbles, and corruption.

      You can blame liberalism for the actions these guys are taking, most of the worst things they have done have nothing to do with liberalism, it’s just about selfishness and terrible government.

      • Hi Earshot. Two things. First, there are at least two distinct definitions of the term “liberalism”. You seem to be using the US definition, in which liberalism is mainly about social policy; for example equality of opportunity for women and minorities and opposition to bigotry. When we criticize “neo-liberalism”, we are using an older, European-derived definition, in which liberalism is an economic ideology claiming, amongst other things, that a person’s value can be measured by their wealth and income (“meritocracy”), and that the “freedom” of companies and markets from public regulation or oversight is more important than the social consequences of their unregulated activities.

        Second, you seem to presume that to criticize Labour = to support National. Politics under MMP are not that bipolar. Sure, there are NatACT supporters who troll this site, and of course they’re going to take pot shots at Labour. But many of us criticize Labour from their left flank, not their right, because we want to know if they intend to rejoin us on the left, or carry on with the centre to centre-right, neo-liberal policy platform they’ve been dishing up since 1984. If you want to learn more about Labour’s history since then, I highly recommend Alistair Barry’s documentaries ‘Someone Else’s Country’ and ‘In a Land of Plenty’.

        • To add to STRYPEY’s excellent reply its also worth noting that National are a conservative party.

          Liberal or neo-liberal may be used as a pejorative when, for example, implying the 80s Labour Party drifted from the liberal aspirations of their roots; but its simply not an appropriate label for National.

          They never tried to follow any path to liberalism, they are openly a conservative party.

  5. Good work Martin , insult 50% of the population , and you wonder why the left are shrinking into margin of error territory.

    • Actually the point is well made. JK and his cronies have ‘groomed’ the said 50% into considering the other 50% as not worth anything – except denigration as lazy drinking smoking gambling dole bludgers who are beneath contempt.

      THAT part of the plan has worked and the crony 50% are definitely deserving of contempt.

    • National has around one third of the voting population’s support mate not 50%. Indeed it never has had 50% support.

      • Absolutely true. Unfortunately, though, they’re taking almost 50% of the buggers who actually turn out on Election Day. And that’s all they need.

        Still, it’s clear that both National and broader Right support has been soft since the 2011 Election. It’s a myth (perpetuated by some in the media and various right-wing commentators) to suggest there’s been no change in the polls. A lot of people don’t realise that there have been periods over the last 5 years when the Opposition Bloc has been clearly ahead of the Govt, with Winnie holding the balance of power. Occassionally, particularly through 2012-13 and even as late as April 2014, Lab+Green support has exceeded National’s.

        The challenge is to reach that level again and then stop Labour’s support being driven down relentlessly in Election Year by systematic MSM attacks on the Opposition Leader’s integrity and competence (a downturn in economic confidence and increasing belief that the Country’s heading in the wrong direction wouldn’t hurt either).

  6. I would say that the vast majority of people who drive huge SUVs and Utes where I live are National Party voters. I don’t know why but they sort of go together.

    • You mean people like contractors and builders who need a vehicle like that for their job? Also known as workers? Yep, they want to keep their jobs so they probably do vote National.

      • Silly “Gotcha” comment, Onetrack. You must know exactly what Esoteric Pineapples was referring to. Or are you confused by those Epsom Values of yours.

        Any idea what they are?

      • Anybody do know that Real Workers drive white vans. With roof racks.

        Why anyone needs a giant SUV/4WD to ponce around on urban roads… Have you ever driven one of those behemoths?* They’re nothing but clunky bully machines.

        *I had to drive one for backcountry work. I’m knowing.

  7. National have used every trick in the book. Look at the social cleansing of Auckland. Remember how Bennet nearly lost her seat, no problem get rid of the state house tenants, increase property prices and therefore rents and low and behold, richer people living there and more importantly probably newbie migrants who read the herald and believe the messages everyday from MSM – John Key is incredible, we have a rockstar economy and Andrew little and Labour are a joke. win win. From wiki on election fraud – notice any similarities?

    “Immigration law may also be used to manipulate electoral demography. An example of this happened in Malaysia when immigrants from neighboring Philippines and Indonesia were given citizenship, together with voting rights, in order for a political party to “dominate” the state of Sabah in a controversial process referred to as Project IC.[7″

    The composition of an electorate may also be altered by disenfranchising some types of people, rendering them unable to vote. In some cases, this may be done at a legislative level, for example by passing a law banning prison inmates (or even former prison inmates),….. Since this is done by lawmakers, it cannot be election fraud, but may subvert the purposes of democracy. This is especially so if members of the disenfranchised group were particularly likely to vote a certain way.”

    “Corrupt election officials may misuse voting regulations such as a literacy tests….”

    Seems Bill English’s “pretty hopeless’ assessment of young Kiwi men, has an even greater purpose for National… can’t read, can’t vote.

    Not to mention the disenfranchised being moved out of Auckland after government immigration policy of increasing population 2.8% per year and therefore making it too expensive for many native Auckland’s to live in Auckland…. and those ‘affordable’ houses being built are often over 1 million dollars… or too small for a NZ family being aimed at the international ‘student’ market

      • You do. For your spin.

        savenz blamed the “immigration policy” – not those who participated in it.

        And that should be able to be discussed without accusations of racism or bigotry.

  8. Michal: “Don’t blame Key…”
    Oh for heaven’s sake! Are you suggesting that the PM is the helpless tool of the dastardly Labour party? Good grief…. Give us a break…

    • I think what he’s trying to say (though not saying it in a way that does him any favours) is that Labour aren’t offering sufficient good policy to draw support away from National, and that it’s wrong to blame Key for that lack.

      I disagree, personally, and think that Labour offer plenty of good policy, if you bother to look for it (hint – you won’t find it in the herald, or stuff, you actually have to go to their website and read it there). He just needs a few lessons in how to write without sounding like a wanker.

  9. No I don’t think they’re comparable with Trump voters at all. Trump voters are dissatisfied with the status quo and have discerned that they’re being screwed, which is hardly something we can say of National voters. They might be wrong about who is screwing them and who benefits, but National voters on the other hand seem mostly to believe that they’re one tax cut away from their next property investment, and one property investment away from being the one who gets to do the screwing from here on out.

    • +100 … ” No I don’t think they’re comparable with Trump voters at all ”

      (imo a silly Post by Martyn Bradbury)

  10. You compare Key to Trump, Key is not as smart as Trump, Trump finances his own presidential bid , the republicans (the right just like national) are trying to keep him out because he dosnt take establishment money ,if he did they would controll him just like all the other money takers.
    Trump has $10 billionhes not looking for more money,he wants to turn America around,he thinks people have been screwed by the Wall st and the establishment and he want to bring back fair play .

    Oh i know people will say hes done this and that to make money,but as the msm in NZ lie so it does in America.
    On youtube you can view the real Trump, see Trump and Family, you will see an entirely open and honest view of him.Go on i dare you.

    • You are right – Key is probably more like Clinton than Trump. But Donald Trump is financing his campaign with loans not his own actual money. He’s light on policy but large on rhetoric but he has caught that zeitgeist – that people have had a guts full of getting squeezed while the mega rich get off with the cash and accolades and don’t even pay their fair share. Bernie Sanders has also caught this – though he has lived what he’s preaching for many many years and also does have policies.
      However the msm is enamored with Donald Trump so he gets most of the publicity …hmm – now that does sound familiar…

      • Donald trump is fighting his own party because they dont want him to win,he will upset the establishment of which the republican party is part of. republicans would rather Clinton won because things would go on the same a Obama administration, they all keep their cushy well paid jobs,they have controlled the congress so have fingers in the power play. If Trump wins the whole scenario changes
        he will stop the rot and corruption in both parties . If Cruz is brought in by foul play with bribed delegates,America will be an awful place ,Cruz dosnt compromise or play fair that why hes disliked so much but the powers that be can give him incentives to let the corruption continue.
        Now Trump is on to it ,he has brought in sharp savvy people to combat Cruz.
        If Trump is pushed out come convention day there will be a minor revolution, the voters wont have their votes made invalid to suit the establishment ,Trump will get the nomination . Clinton will be very upset, just before the presidential vote .Trump will be the next president ,but even he will have to give consessions and wont have all the power , the other members of the government wont give up their perks so easily. Put this in your diaries and see what happens.

        • Sorry I couldn’t find the youtube doco you were talking about – give me the actual title and I’d be happy to look 🙂 .

          You’re right – it is a really interesting election. Ted Cruz is flipping mad and would be a disaster if made president. Donald Trump has a wonderful way with publicity but there are some things not brought up so much. Like how he’s been a Democrat. That he was friends with the Clintons and they were actually at his wedding to Melania (which again shows Hilliary Clinton’s dodginess) and he’s donated around $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation.

          Trump has not come out with any plans to stop the corruption of politics nor to halt inequality which are the things making the US a worse place -but prove me wrong : ) .And he is bringing out the worst in many people due to the way he is running his rallys ( watch TYT Politics -Jan 12 Trump Rally Mob Scene ).Journalists are literally roped off. His campaign manager was charged with assaulting a journalist (look up Corey Lewandowski and Michelle Fields). Ironically a lot of what you are saying Trump will do – get rid of Superpacs and keeping jobs in the US – Bernie Sanders will do. I suspect you haven’t heard a lot more than what the mainstream is telling us all about both these candidates. Try TYT – they do back up what they say with fact & other source.

          And yes, I am looking out -this is a really an interesting political time!

      • +100 …”Key is probably more like Clinton than Trump.”…both beholden to the American corporates and Goldman Sachs

        ( actually Andrew Little likes Hillary Clinton too)

  11. Trump supporters aren’t as dumb as nat supporters, at least with Trump supporters they don’t know what he’ll be like yet, nat supporters keep voting back in one of the worst governments in NZ history.

    100 billion debt pilled on in record time with nothing to show for it, and the usual cop out excuse of Christchurch doesn’t wash, it didn’t cost a 10th of that.

  12. Taken from the net re American presidential race. Apt for this blog –

    Thinking is now regarded as an act of stupidity, and ignorance a virtue. All traces of critical thought appear only at the margins of the culture as ignorance becomes the primary organizing principle of American society.

  13. However John Key has led NZ out of the GFC and developed NZ into a Rockstar Economy in only 8 years. Legend

  14. ‘Trump goes against foreign policy consensus since Soviet Union – Russian scholar’

    “Pundits, opponents & even President Barack Obama have criticized Donald Trump’s recent comments on foreign affairs, but is his rhetoric really that far off base? Scholar Stephen F. Cohen tells Larry why Trump just may provide what’s missing in U.S. foreign policy, raises questions about the point of NATO existence and whether Russia and the U.S. should lay aside their differences and end the new cold war.”

Comments are closed.