UPDATE: Let’s just pause and examine the true horror of what 45% of NZ supporting National really means

By   /   May 29, 2018  /   19 Comments

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

I suggest that voting National is less a political choice and is now a gated cultural cult fuelled by resentment and not ideology. 

This…

…and this…

…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.

It is this one that shows 70% of National Party voters don’t know anyone who is unemployed.

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.

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

19 Comments

  1. I'm right says:

    The actual true horror for NZ Martyn is that The Greens are still above 5%…won’t last too long though as Winston will twist the knife slowly and deeply so the Greens bleed support over the next 2yrs, we are seeing the demise of the far left Greens before the next election, I believe they will split and form a true environment party and remain with the far left ideology just like Internet party and Man’s, a fringe party and gone with just a percent or so support.

    • WILD KATIPO says:

      Um,… you are really quite stupid, – and wishful.

      Are you really trying to assert Peters doesent see the value in having the Green party onboard to continue the coalition. You are stupid.

      And ,… oh btw ?

      Please name one support party’s that National now have… barring a 0.1% ACT party that had been in terminal decline for decades and is now virtually extinct.

      And lets list a few ‘support’ partys National have been responsible for causing to go extinct ;

      United Future.

      Th Maori Party.

      The Conservative Party.

      So,… despite what any commentators wish to contrive, – the numbers – or the coalition partners – for National just AINT there.

      Sorry sunshine.

    • Mjolnir says:

      What’s a “true environment party “? Is that a creature that concerns itself only with climate change, which you righties still deny?

      You’re a climate change denier, im right, so where would that leave the Green Party. Lets face it, you’re only interested in a neutered Green Party so the voice for social issues and deprivation is silenced. Thats your true agenda isn’t it.

  2. Nick J says:

    The true horror to me is that Carmel says she cant push through the reforms to welfare as fast as she would like. Its really an easy and obvious exercise:
    1. Publish on a pamphlet and online what benefits are available, qualifiers and dollars.
    2. Instruct public servants to serve the people.

    • Tiger Mountain says:

      yep, exactly, there are measures that could be taken right now, like funding AAAP for a whole swag of advocates and organisers!

      did hear on RNZ today that the Minister is “looking at” making changes to the 70 cents in the dollar abatement rate before the Welfare Review is due to be completed in February 2019

    • Lone comet says:

      Absolutely right, but they want or need to keep people ignorant about the parameters of their rights.

  3. David Cormack says:

    This is a really great piece Martyn.

  4. Dean Reynolds says:

    Nye Bevan, the Welsh coal miner who implemented the UK’s National Health Service in 1948, used to say to his constituents, ‘It’s not a crime to vote Conservative – it’s a sin!’

  5. Alex says:

    Such high polling for one party is a real concern to me because it risks undermining the benefits that MMP promises to deliver. I still remember being horrified during John Key’s 2011 election victory speech where it looked like National would govern alone and he announced that ‘NZ is on the cusp of something special’ – language he’d never used before that seemed to signal massive and unanticipated change was coming. A terrifying moment in an MMP environment with a unicameral government – thank goodness for special votes and Key’s preference for feeling liked rather than doing anything of significance.

  6. Mike the Lefty says:

    Well you know that proves the vacuity of National supporters.
    They don’t want to know about the fact that their party, who vehemently opposes communism, has an ex-Chinese Communist Party spy on their backbench.
    With National you can always set your sights higher – to higher levels of hypocrisy that is.

  7. WILD KATIPO says:

    … ‘ 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 ‘ …

    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.

    Ugly.

    * And yes, I believe that Ruth Richardson set the final figure 20% lower than what a family would need to survive on the most basic of diets. She actually used nutritionist’s to arrive at the base amount then rearranged those figures.

    She , was perhaps the most odious of all the neo liberals barring Roger Douglas, and Jenny Shipley.

    And Paula Maggot Bennett is not far behind as is the Dipper, Key , Bolger ( the coward ). There are many more but these alone will suffice.

    Maggots all of them.

  8. Philg says:

    Good work Martyn. The links to the horrible, punitive and nasty policies was excellent resource material.

  9. CC says:

    National now want to reinstate the Three Strikes law

  10. greg says:

    nacts will only learn when the pitch forks come over the hill

    • Mjolnir says:

      After the Nat’s three terms/strikes, the public voted them out. The one time the three strikes thing worked.

  11. Lone comet says:

    Everything you say here is spot on about the welfare system, and is that really policy to get rewarded for kicking people out the door?

  12. Lone comet says:

    So terrible the humiliation people have to suffer. Great article.

  13. Marcus says:

    “I suggest that voting National is less a political choice and is now a gated cultural cult fuelled by resentment and not ideology. ”
    Quite correct I think.
    If you asked the average National supporter why they support National most can’t actually give you a coherent reason.
    When you point out to them that National doesn’t actually stand for anything and rather that their policies are essentially to do nothing except sit back and watch as things happen, National supporters just give a slightly embarrassed smirk and shrug their shoulders.
    The more committed will give you the usual right wing diatribe about unions having too much power, the b….Maoris have too much power, too much PC rubbish, etc etc.
    What this actually means is that they don’t actually want to know about anything, it is much more convenient to swallow what the right wing MSM regurgitates to them and not ask any questions, either to themselves or others.
    What a sad nation we have become when we just accept mediocrity and low standards without any challenge.