…should terrify anyone with a basic education, sense of civic responsibility and simple decency.
After the obscene underfunding of our social infrastructure and actual infrastructure has been laid bare, 45% of NZers still support National.
After the incompetence of MPI that directly impacts National’s voting farmers, 45% of NZers still support National.
After the mass surveillance lies, the dirty politics and the naked deceit of Steven Joyce claiming an $11.7billion hole that never existed, 45% of NZers still support National.
I suggest that voting National is less a political choice and is now a gated cultural cult fuelled by resentment and not ideology.
Young Nats posing with hilarious poverty posters in 2013
I think there is one poll that provides the most significant insight into the minds of National Party voters which directs so much of the narrative we see in the mainstream media.
Just think about that for a moment.
In 2013, 70% of National voters didn’t know anyone who was unemployed. That is a staggering revelation.
As a small country, we have mistaken NZ as an equal country where people can move up through the social strata and freely interact with each other. I would suggest to you that statistic of 70% of National voters not knowing anyone unemployed actually shows that we are a highly segregated culture.
When the Left argue about social justice and inequality, it completely falls on deaf ears for National voters, they don’t experience the injustices of a hegemonic cultural and economic system biased against them, they see their individual success as a self-affirming truth of neoliberal mythology.
If you are rich – you did that all by yourself with hard work.
If you are poor, you choose to be poor. Fuck off and stop breeding.
This blinded reality helps explain the pure viciousness being spat at Metiria las year for having the courage to bravely acknowledge that almost a quarter of a century ago she was forced to lie to feed her family.
For most National Party voters, they believe anyone can walk up to WINZ and just get a house. That is what Key said when asked about what the homeless should do, it sparked this image…
The reality of the brutal and savage policy meted out to beneficiaries is simply not understood by National voters.
National Party voters don’t understand that the neoliberal welfare state agencies are there to terrify, intimidate and break beneficiaries so that the interaction becomes so awful the poor chose to flee these agencies rather than seek them out.
That’s why the Salvation Army had to distance themselves from the Government in 2016 when the Government claimed MSD staff had tagged along with Salvation Army staff when talking to the homeless in their cars. The Salvation Army knew those most in need fear the Government and would refuse any help if they thought MSD staff were accompanying the Salvation Army.
That’s why the Government have been so surprised at the ‘hidden’ number of homeless using Motel emergency allowances because the homeless try to avoid the state departments. Now that every state agency all share information, they help chase debts that have been built up by the poor when those poor touch base with any agency.
National Party voters don’t understand that 60% of beneficiaries owe WINZ money because WINZ won’t tell them how a ‘relationship’ is defined, preferring to catch beneficiaries out in ‘relationships’ and declaring they’ve committed fraud.
This fraud then has penalties added to it.
Most beneficiraies in debt to the State will die while in debt.
They are treated little better than slaves by the neoliberal welfare state.
Take the actual application form to get a benefit. Most mortgages are a mere dozen pages long, the application for welfare is a staggering 73 pages long. Written in dense and complicated language, the goal is to intimidate and turn the poor away.
For those who never have to deal with Housing NZ, WINZ, CYFs, Corrections, Probations or MSD, they don’t see the cruelty and hopelessness neoliberal welfare agencies generate. That means they can feel no empathy or compassion and that explains the vitriolic hate spat at beneficiaries.
Most National voters have no idea how the Ruth Richardson benefit cuts were calculated. National in the 1990s worked out what the minimum nutritional amounts were and then set the benefit just below that in the cruel belief that hunger will motivate poor people to not be on the benefit.
When the poor can’t feed their kids on the amount they are given, there’s a very specific reason for that, it’s been designed to keep them hungry.
Most National voters have no idea how awful going to WINZ is. First you have to try and book a time via their constantly overloaded and under staffed 0800 number.
Then the beneficiary has to arrive on time, and if there has been a mistake, or they have been unable to get through on the 0800 number, there are security guards on the door to turn them away.
Let’s say you do mange to get inside, you are escorted under guard to an open floor office where you have to discuss the most intimate and painful experiences with zero privacy by staff who have all the bedside manner of brain hungry zombies on meth. Those staff are paid incentives to turn down beneficiaries and throw them off welfare so that their official stats keep the Government looking good.
Despite all the evidence of human pollution creating climate change, almost half of all National Voters don’t see it as an urgent issue…
…National voters are little better than the gated communities of exclusive brethren, trying to woo them over with softly softly policy that makes incremental change is pointless.
The sooner the Left wake up to this, stops being so mild and actually puts some spine and backbone into policy that will directly aid their voter base – i.e. play politics the exact same way the Right does, then we will get somewhere. Trying to keep people onside as wilfully ignorant as National voters will lead to watered down policy that does nothing for the poor who put their hopes in to this new Government and they will walk away disappointed and we will lose 2020 to National.
UPDATE: At the Northcote by-election debate this week, National Party supporters were screaming ‘Communist’ and ‘Go back to Russia’ at the Labour Party candidate. That is who these people are.