GUEST BLOG: Lizzie Cook – I will not vote Labour

By   /   September 13, 2017  /   12 Comments

TDB recommends Voyager - Unlimited internet @home as fast as you can get

I will not vote Labour, not even strategically to keep the National candidate out in my electorate. Why?

I will not vote Labour, not even strategically to keep the National candidate out in my electorate. Why?

  • Just because you are sick of National is not a good reason to vote in ‘National Lite’ (Labour – for those of you who do not ‘get it’). Neither National nor Labour offer structural change that will really address poverty, mental health and environmental degradation, so why is everybody under the illusion that a Labour government will be any better than a National government?
  • National and Labour are using rhetoric about poverty, mental health, Māori and the environment, only because Metiria Turei and the Greens voiced her/their concerns and reached 13% in the polls.
  • However, Labour continually abandons the Greens again and again and again…
  • The Green Party along with Māori Party and Mana are the only parties who will ensure that structural changes are made to benefit people and the environment so for example, instead of relying on corporations and NGOs to feed hungry children at school, the children will not turn up to school hungry! Spot the difference!
  • To help poor people, to put money into mental health (huge structural changes required here) and to recognise Māori sovereignty as part of a bicultural nation is to help society as a whole and so the benefits are for all people, for all of us!
  • If Jacinda Adern and Labour think it is ok to work with NZ First, they clearly do not serve the interests of Māori (yet again), mental health and the poor (but we already know that).
  • Labour’s record with their Rogernomics, Foreshore and Seabed ‘land grab’ and the 2nd invasion of Tuhoe shows that.
  • Labour shows no interest in alignment with Parties who promote real changes for Māori, mental health, the poor and the environment.
  • Labour (especially Jacinda and Kelvin) betrayed Metiria Turei by not standing beside her to support a magnificent Māori woman. They clearly did not want competition from another woman or another Māori with such strong charisma and fearlessness. Metiria fought for a vision, not her own political ambition. This vision was for structural change to end poverty, poor statistics for Māori and address mental health.
  • Jacinda Adern is not a politician with a vision for New Zealand. She is a politician with her own personal political ambition, as is Kelvin Davies.

Lizzie Cook is descended from White English, Irish and Welsh Settlers to Aotearoa in the time of Queen Victoria and the British Empire. She is a PhD candidate at Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha/University of Canterbury. Her thesis working title is: White Settler Bliss of Cruelty.

***
Want to support this work? Donate today
***
Follow us on Twitter & Facebook
***

12 Comments

  1. Nick says:

    “So I will perpetuate National Heavy”.

    I agree that Labour are on the wrong track in some areas and far too timid in others.

    But remember, unless a party, which wishes to find ways to benefit those who are disadvantaged as a priority ahead of sacrificing at the alter of neo-liberal, globalizing, robot-generated, elites-advantaging, Climate-Change-ignoring “efficiency” comes to power, you will have NO ONE to talk to about your concerns, so your chance of changing a mind and a policy is not just low, it is ZERO.

    Personally, I will keep an eye on the polls and will switch my vote from Labour to the Greens if it looks like they need help. Appearing to keep their options open, especially in the current circumstances, is only sensible positioning on Labour’s part. Meanwhile, historically, the Greens are far from innocent in their interaction with Labour. There are many, myself included, who consider that they sabotaged Labour before the last election. However, there is a old saying:”in politics you don’t have friends, you only have interests”. Currently our interests dictate a change of government. Where we go from there depends on the vote. And that, in some measure, depends on you.

    I always tell myself that whatever I choose to do, another 17 people will come to the same conclusion and do the same thing. (Magical thinking, but probably not wrong). However, if you have an effective voice and a circle of friends who hang on your every word (which may or may not be your case, Lizzie), the damage you do can be compounded. I invite anyone tempted to refuse to participate because Labour show timidity at nailing their colours to an extreme mast, to reconsider.

    All that was needed to put Trump in the White House was for good people to decide “Bernie or Bust”.

    You can please yourself, but if you really sit the election out, or vote in a ballot-spoiling way, don’t be surprised if I, for one, blame you, if the Left don’t quite make it over the line.

    • LizzieC says:

      Well said, but honestly, I do not consider the Greens, Maaori Party or Mana ‘extreme’. What they are talking about is necessary, essential and life-changing. Labour are also neo-liberal so instead of being tortured greatly by National, we are going to be tortured slightly less by Labour?

    • CLEANGREEN says:

      Winston pointed this issue out at a public meeting yesterday.

      Winston said if you don’t vote smart; – then national will sign the TPPA November!!!!

      “Then we are all then under certain overseas interests and NZ will be destroyed by them as they will take all and leave us impoverished.”

      We will cast part labour half NZ First, but if Greens need saving after future polls show maybe we will give a part to them also.

  2. Michal says:

    Great post Lizzie. Had Ardern and co stood up for Turei I personally would have given them some kudos. But they threw her under the bus. She is the one that I really would like to see back in parliament, the first who has really spoken to the heart of the matter around child poverty. I will be voting Green although I am worried about what Metiria put forward might get lost. One of the biggest problems with the Greens is that far too many of them see the Greens as an environmental party and not a social justice party and they don’t want a part of the latter. I am sure they will get back up there, probably near 10%. But when they lose Metiria they will lose the best member of their team. I have been campaigning out there for Metiria for Te Tai Tonga the biggest problem is that people think she has left!

  3. LizzieC says:

    Labour are not Left

    • Barry says:

      And National are morally bankrupt .

      • LizzieC says:

        Agreed, but how have Labour been better? … is Labour going to change the neoliberalism it put in place with the Lange Government that set in motion the poverty we have? … is it going to make it’s Māori members tow the (white) party line as it does another land-grab like the Foreshore and Seabed, and Tariana Turia walked away to create a new party? … is it going to continually use Māori faithfulness to family voting patterns and then not actually deliver for Māori? … is Labour going to overhaul the reasons for putting people in prison so we have less Māori and less people altogether in prison and more people doing community work? …is it? … and so the list goes on…

        • Danyl Strype says:

          “is Labour going to change the neoliberalism it put in place with the Lange Government that set in motion the poverty we have?”

          I’m not sure that any government could completely fix the trainwreck of austerity (“neoliberalism”) in one term, or even in three. But a number of Labour’s core policies are a major step in the right direction, such as starting to restore free tertiary education (three years free study for all). Plus, they are still saying they would prefer to work with the Greens, who want to crack down on corporate tax evasion and asset raiding (eg water bottling companies and irrigation for dairy intensification), and use the money to restore benefits and social housing, and clean up our waterways.

          This isn’t everything I want either, far from it, but it’s infinitely preferable to another 3 years of the NatACTs, or any government involving Winston First, whose policies include commercializing roads with user pays charges for motorists, and lowering corporate taxes so that money will trickle down into wage rises (I kid you not!)

  4. Barry says:

    Absolute rubbish, the Greens will never be considered a viable ,stable political entity.
    It will be National for the foreseeable future and that’s a shame.

  5. Quicksilver says:

    Lizzie, I cannot let this opinion piece slide by unchallenged, because you make some startling assertions.

    • Just because you are sick of National is not a good reason to vote in ‘National Lite’ (Labour – for those of you who do not ‘get it’).

    What I ‘get’ is that the last ten years have been a recurring nightmare for increasing numbers of NZer’s. This includes my family, my workmates, and my community. It is proven this govt is both corrupt and incompetent. There is no proof this applies to the majority of Labour candidates up for election ‘cos they obviously haven’t been in government. Yet you propose making no effort to, at the very least, attempt to change this. There won’t be a Green govt this election. But there could be a Labour/Green one. And they have publicly stated they DO want to change things.

    • National and Labour are using rhetoric about poverty, mental health, Māori and the environment, only because Metiria Turei and the Greens voiced her/their concerns and reached 13% in the polls.

    Seriously? Worsening poverty, dreadful mental health stats, racism and environmental degradation are very obvious points of weakness (among a host of others) with which to hold National to account. To suggest Labour, the main opposition party, would make no mention of these in their election campaign unless prompted by the Greens is laughable.

    • However, Labour continually abandons the Greens again and again and again…

    Labour has stated – very non-ambiguously – that should they be in a position to form a government, James Shaw will be receiving the first phone call. So there will be Labour – Green negotiations. That means, the Greens will get the chance to implement policy in exchange for their support. Either as part of the government, or some other arrangement. You do understand this, right? I think we can trust James Shaw to represent his party well.

    • The Green Party along with Māori Party and Mana are the only parties who will ensure that structural changes are made to benefit people and the environment so for example, instead of relying on corporations and NGOs to feed hungry children at school, the children will not turn up to school hungry! Spot the difference!
    • To help poor people, to put money into mental health (huge structural changes required here) and to recognise Māori sovereignty as part of a bicultural nation is to help society as a whole and so the benefits are for all people, for all of us!

    Nothing I have heard or seen from Labour suggests they genuinely don’t want to help do all/any of those things.
    Nothing I have heard or seen from National suggests they genuinely do want to help do all/any of those things.

    • If Jacinda Adern and Labour think it is ok to work with NZ First, they clearly do not serve the interests of Māori (yet again), mental health and the poor (but we already know that).

    A gross generalisation. Post election negotiations in the MMP setup see individual policy tradeoffs. Where in the Labour manifesto does it say they will not “serve the interests of Māori……, mental health and the poor”?? You can’t help people from the opposition benches. Under MMP, to be on the other side of the House, you HAVE to negotiate – sometimes with parties who – shock horror – have campaigned on a different set of policies to yours.

    • Labour’s record with their Rogernomics, Foreshore and Seabed ‘land grab’ and the 2nd invasion of Tuhoe shows that.

    It seems to obvious to state, but this Labour lineup is not the same as previous Labour lineups. Christ, once upon a time, National was interventionist and the very opposite of laissez faire under Muldoon. But they sure as shit aren’t that now.

    • Labour shows no interest in alignment with Parties who promote real changes for Māori, mental health, the poor and the environment.

    What? You are joking, surely.

    • Labour (especially Jacinda and Kelvin) betrayed Metiria Turei by not standing beside her to support a magnificent Māori woman. They clearly did not want competition from another woman or another Māori with such strong charisma and fearlessness. Metiria fought for a vision, not her own political ambition. This vision was for structural change to end poverty, poor statistics for Māori and address mental health.

    No doubt that Metiria bravely spoke up for those without a voice. But nevertheless it was clumsy and politically naive. She essentially said to the MSM, “Here, take this loaded gun and shoot me”. So they did. To even think they would be dealt with fairly by the corporate owned media was stunningly lacking in judgement. Labour had to do what they did, to survive the self inflicted shitstorm. Otherwise – yep, you guessed it – another 3 years of status quo. Now, tell me, how the fuck does that in any way help those without a voice?!

    • Jacinda Adern is not a politician with a vision for New Zealand. She is a politician with her own personal political ambition, as is Kelvin Davies.

    Jesus, ain’t they all? I mean, show me a politician without any personal ambition and I’ll show you someone who’s going to have one helluva short political career. Politics is a bear pit, not a love-in. But I’m confident Jacinda is not one thing – a psychopath, like the ex-Merill-Lynch ponytail-pulling prick we had to put up with for 8 years.

  6. Mike the Lefty says:

    We have to ask ourselves a fundamental question: Do we care about this country and the people in it?
    If we do then we have to make sure this government gets kicked in the arse on Saturday.
    The only sure way to help this is to vote Labour or Green.
    Any others and you have no way of knowing whether you are helping to keep this government in power or not.
    If that doesn’t bother then you can vote for anyone you like and take your chances.
    Me, I won’t be taking any chances.