A ‘wicked divide’ is growing between the haves and have-nots, says Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson, and it’s all down to the housing boom.
Property prices in New Zealand have shot up nearly 20 percent in the past 12 months, data from the likes of Trade Me and the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand shows, completely ignoring the shocks sent through the rest of the economy by COVID-19.
In fact, some have blamed the measures taken to keep the economy afloat by the Reserve Bank for fuelling the housing market, with cheap lending being spent on buying houses off each other rather than investment into businesses and the productive parts of the economy.
“Things were bad before the election, but through COVID and the extra-cheap money that has been flooding in… that has helped to cause runaway house prices,” Davidson told Newshub Nation on Saturday.
“I don’t think any of us before the election knew that we were going to be looking down the barrel of runaway house prices. I do think there is an opportunity – and the Prime Minister has shown that she can listen and review the situation – to reflect on all the tools, all the tools in the toolbox that are available to us.”
The Homelessness Minister is 100% right to be frightened by the wicked divide that is looming.
After every major pandemic, there is social unrest.
“So when our Sickness, and our Poverty Had greater wants than we could well supply; Strict Orders did but more enrage our grief, And hinder in accomplishing relief.”
That’s how the British poet George Wither explained a spreading rebellion against social-distancing rules. Seeing quarantines and lockdowns as unfair and tyrannical punishments, people were taking to the streets. The year was 1625, the place was London, the disease was plague.
The peasant revolt in the 1300s, the civil unrest in the 1600s and the civil disobedience in the 1900s, the strict measures required to snuff out pandemics always makes the lives of the poorest unliveable.
And when life becomes unliveable, there is social unrest.
History teaches us this, we KNOW after pandemics comes civil unrest so to watch the growing ingredient list that will spark that unrest climb here with such speed demands a political solution.
We have yet to hear what that solution will be.
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