To Apologise For Your Country’s History, Is To Admit You Do Not Understand It.

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THE DECISION BY STUFF to publish an all-purpose mea culpa for its racism towards Maori will be regretted. That regret will be fuelled in part by future generations’ acute embarrassment at the simplistic anachronisms which constitute the apologists’ central “argument”. Mostly, however, it will be fuelled by the effects of the highly racialised backlash it is bound to provoke. It is clear that a certain privileged layer of New Zealand society has learned nothing from the recent political convulsions besetting both the United Kingdom and the United States. Spit upon the most cherished beliefs and achievements of your “deplorables” and – eventually – they will spit back.

Let us deal with the anachronisms first. The word itself simply means: “a chronological inconsistency in some arrangement, especially a juxtaposition of persons, events, objects, language terms and customs from different time periods.” To judge the actions of historical actors by the prevailing moral precepts of the present is not only philosophically impermissible, but it also betrays the writer’s fundamental ignorance of the history he is purporting to condemn.

The founders of The Press, The Dominion, The Evening Post, The Taranaki Herald and The Waikato Times; the editors they appointed; and the journalists they hired; were all children of their times. They were living in a colony of the British Empire and in their writing they evinced the beliefs and values of what historians have dubbed “The Age of Imperialism”.

The conquest of other peoples’ lands, and the ruthless dismantling of cultures that inevitably followed, was justified by the imperialists’ unshakeable conviction that the steady advance of Western Civilisation across the planet lay at the very heart of human “progress”. The corollary to this belief in Western superiority was the notion that any resistance on the part of those the imperialist poet par excellence, Rudyard Kipling, called “lesser breeds without the law” was an unacceptable impediment to progress that must, at all costs, be crushed.

Which is not to say that these imperialist beliefs were accepted uncritically by everyone. There were contemporaries of the men who founded New Zealand’s colonial press who, while undoubtedly accepting the racial hierarchies proclaimed by the science of the day, nevertheless recognised the theft of other people’s property when they saw it – and weren’t afraid to say so.

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If the white races were so self-evidently superior to the rest of humanity, these critics argued, then surely they were honour-bound to uphold the core civilisational values of which they were so inordinately proud? Promises, freely given, must be kept. Rights universally shared must be universally acknowledged. Equality, once proclaimed, cannot be rescinded. It was people of this temperament – a tiny minority of the settler population – who felt moved to write to those same colonial newspapers condemning with considerable force the destruction of Parihaka and the detention without trial of the settlement’s leaders.

It is also a fact that the colonial newspapers printed their letters. Proof, one might think, that the Pakeha New Zealanders of 140 years ago were not all the slavering racist monsters portrayed by Stuff’s current crop of anachronistic moralisers.

Which is not to say that right up until the childhoods of people still alive today, those racial hierarchies were upheld as scientific truths. Not even the unqualified evil of the Holocaust and the eugenicist murder of innocents by Nazi doctors in the 1930s and 40s, was enough to shake the white supremacist prejudices of the British, French, Dutch and Portuguese imperialists who attempted to pick up where they left off before the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939.

It took the breaking of the imperialists’ grip in India, Africa, Indo-China and Indonesia – by Indians, Africans, Indo-Chinese and Indonesians – bolstered by the scholarship of post-Holocaust anthropologists, historians and political philosophers, to upend finally the racial hierarchies that had justified white supremacy for upwards of four centuries. That, and the fight for civil rights in the belly of the American beast that quickened radically the debate over the place of race in the development of the United States – and the whole of the “Western World”.

It was not an easy fight. Ideas that have, generation after generation, been ingrained in the minds of children by their parents, taught in school textbooks, and articulated forcefully by teachers, preachers, politicians and journalists of every stripe, are extremely hard to kill. All the more so when the identity of those to whom they have been transmitted is bound up inextricably with the pride and self-confidence they communicate, and the power they purport to guarantee. The simple idea that “The West is the Best” is not contradicted – or apologised for – without unleashing resentments and hatreds of punishing force.

Reading the various essays published in the Stuff newspapers, it becomes clear very quickly that the writers possess not the slightest insight or empathy for the settler society they condemn; nor understanding of the 150 years of “racist” journalism they apologise for. What, one is moved to wonder, do they see when they look upon the works of their ancestors? The roads and the railways? The public buildings? The farms and factories? The family histories of struggle, disappointment and ultimate success? The sacrifice of tens-of-thousands of young men in wars whose casualty-lists reduce the New Zealand Wars to a skirmish.

A few years ago, I recall describing to an academic friend from Turkey the “battle” of Rangiaowhia, and explaining the discrepancy between the accounts of Pakeha and Maori historians as to the number killed. Was it twelve or seventeen? “Thousand?”, my companion asked, confused. “No, no,” I replied, embarrassed, “just twelve or seventeen.” She shook her head in quiet disbelief.

To apologise for one’s history is to invite those wronged by it to seek either restitution or retribution – or, maybe, both. The problem is, that what was taken by a combination of force and trickery is unlikely to be reclaimed by anything else. The children of the settlers who built “New Zealand” on the body of “Aotearoa”, understand in that special place known to all human-beings who love their homeland, that the apologies being offered by these radical journalists (who clearly despise everything “New Zealand” stands for) are a warning of deep and tragic upheavals to come.

Some of these Pakeha will reluctantly abandon their country. Some will retreat deeper into what is still its racist heartland. And some will struggle to preserve the nation they have grown up in. A nation whose true history is one of Maori and Pakeha finding more and more to be proud of in the way each ethnicity has adapted to the presence of the other. In the course of that history many apologies have been earned, and some have been given, but not, in the end, for being caught up in historical forces too vast for blame, and too permanent for guilt.

 

94 COMMENTS

  1. I absolutely agree, it is madness to apologise on generations long passed who saw the world through a different lense.

    Stuff.co really need to take a cleansing deep breath and cut the warm feelings in the tummy editions. Why? Because like all so called journalistic publications they still, and under their current management, roll around like pigs in shit at others deep misfortune. The very unnecessary front page headlines in the past month or two for those who have lost love ones by tragic circumstances and who just need to be left alone but find themselves on Stuffs front page again and again. Just to rub the salt into the wounds a little deeper.

    I’m sorry Stuff you feel the need to atone to the perceived sins of the past but in all this hand wringing you failed to notice you are still the same old clickbait trash you’ve always been.

    Try sorting out your modern day sins you create here and now and then I may care.

    • X-ray: “….it is madness to apologise on generations long passed who saw the world through a different lense.”

      I agree. If Stuff wishes to apologise for what it’s printed since it was established, go ahead: knock yourselves out, folks.

      But it has no business at all, apologising for what was written by previous generations. They were people of their times: what they thought and wrote was informed by their worldview. Nobody now alive – including Stuff staff – bears any responsibility for any of it.

      “…in all this hand wringing you failed to notice you are still the same old clickbait trash you’ve always been.

      Try sorting out your modern day sins you create here and now and then I may care.”

      That’s pretty much how I feel as well. I detest the intrusive reporting on people’s personal tragedies. I agree with you that they need to be left alone at such times.

      Given that Stuff’s in an apologising frame of mind, I’d like it to apologise for the egregious propaganda – about what’s happening in other countries – that it’s inflicted upon us since its inception. And I want it to do better.

      It doesn’t do any political analysis of its own: it just prints uncritically the schlock coming from the likes of the US and UK msm. I’ve had a gutsful of it, and no longer read any of it.

      So: how about it, Stuff? Start doing the job you’re supposed to be doing: actual journalism, you know?

  2. It isn’t just future generations that are/will be embarrassed about this orgy of virtue signalling by NZ media. But as Trotter points out, it isn’t just embarrassing – it’s worrying.

    “Deep and tragic upheavals” do indeed seem likely. One portent is the Royal Society of NZ’s betrayal of science and reason by consecrating animism in the form of “Matauranga”. Another is the moral panic about “structural racism” at NZ universities, even after an external review at University of Waikato found no specific evidence of racism. And what of NZ institutions’ indulgence of the weaponization of “tikanga” to shield suspects from prosecution – “hands off my DNA, it’s a taonga.”

    Trotter mentions the reaction of a Turkish academic to “battles” on NZ soil – I’ll take that as my cue to talk about Mustafa Kemal. I wonder what he would make of NZ’s awokening? 100 years ago, it wasn’t just Westerners who thought “The West is the Best”. Kemal thought the only model to emulate was Western European civilization, and attempted to forge the new state of Turkey along Western European lines. He would be very surprised by the recent behaviour of the Royal Society of NZ, believing as he did that “Science is the most real guide for civilisation, for life, for success in the world. To search for a guide other than science is absurdity, ignorance and heresy.”

    • P P II: ““Deep and tragic upheavals” do indeed seem likely.”

      Yup. A considerable concern in this neck of the woods. Yet there’s no going back: nobody now alive was responsible for, for instance, the large scale land confiscations of the 19th and early 20th centuries. Or – come to that – the theft of land from each other by tribes during pre-European times.

      Attempts to remedy past injustices risk creating modern-day injustices which could have even worse consequences.

      “One portent is the Royal Society of NZ’s betrayal of science and reason by consecrating animism in the form of “Matauranga”.”

      This is bizarre and unworthy of such an institution. Animism ought properly to have no part in modern science. It’s as if the Royal Society were still advocating phlogiston. This is evidence of an organisation having succumbed to wokery.

      “Another is the moral panic about “structural racism” at NZ universities, even after an external review at University of Waikato found no specific evidence of racism.”

      Indeed. I commented on this at the time. In fairness to Stuff, it’s reportage at the time was quite even- handed. See this:

      https://i.stuff.co.nz/national/300116670/waikato-uni-racism-claims-incorrect-sparked-by-spending-probe–report

      “And what of NZ institutions’ indulgence of the weaponization of “tikanga” to shield suspects from prosecution – “hands off my DNA, it’s a taonga.”

      Again: this is a bizarre demonstration of ignorance about DNA. We all share the same DNA.

      ” “Science is the most real guide for civilisation, for life, for success in the world. To search for a guide other than science is absurdity, ignorance and heresy.””

      Yup. Sums up the subject.

  3. Well said as usual Chris. I used to read the Herald for a laugh & Stuff for insight – now it’s full of far too much navel gazing. The worst abuse is their blatant censorship of any opinion that doesn’t align with their editorial line. I guess it’s back to RNZ now.

    For someone who’s ancestors on the Male & female sides came to NZ from the Highland Clearances & the Irish Famine respectively the current vogue for reinterpreting history through today’s woke lens is more than a bit self indulgent arrogant pretension.

  4. Well said. Chris.

    [Growing up in England] I still remember learning how we took Canada off the French, and how we taught the Germans and Japanese a lesson or two, and how we rescued the French (twice), and how we brought civilisation to half the world while painting a quarter of it red on the maps.

    Such was the degree of mind control, cultural conditioning and non-discussion of the real history of the world, we played ‘cowboys and indians’ (the ‘indians’ being the baddies 99% of the time) and we were inculcated into fully believing in the merits of industrialism -even if the cities were filthy and miners were keeling over like flies after being zapped with fly spray.

    Although in the 1960s I became disturbed by the continued conversion local of farmland into housing estates, it wasn’t till the 70s, and with a bit more ‘proper education’, that I began to recognise we (as a society) were on the wrong track.

    By the late 90s it was abundantly clear to me that further industrialism and imperial wars to control resources was not the way forward, and that many indigenous societies had better values than the one I grew up in had.

    Sadly, the NZ mainstream media has doubled-down on promotion of everything that is phony and destructive, promoting all that is unsustainable and culturally inappropriate whilst paying lip service to alternatives, and the weak-kneed Adern government is doing the same whilst pretending to do otherwise.

    This will all end very badly for everyone.

  5. Well said Chris, some sanity at last. This country has changed forever, most people haven’t woken up to it yet. The ‘New Zealand Way’ may exist in some of the rural areas for a while but it has/is changed in the cities, the number of new immigrants has guaranteed that. Seems we now have resident ‘experts’ for every conceivable situation, most from overseas so they bring their ideas from their cultures, not that they have managed to ‘fix’ anything, its all a bit sad really…

    • Alan: “This country has changed forever, most people haven’t woken up to it yet.”

      We’ve noticed it. To the point that, even at this late stage of our lives, we’re pondering the complexities of decamping. And I was born here: this is my country too, yet we’re increasingly being made to feel unwelcome.

      I now understand better the awful situation facing the whites of South Africa. Their ancestors – in particular those of the Afrikaners – migrated there centuries ago, more or less contemporaneously with the arrival of the Zulus from Kenya.

      They are justified in asking: how long do you have to be here before you’re a South African?

      I note that family members now living overseas don’t really understand what’s going on here, because they aren’t exposed to the constant drip-drip of it.

  6. Good post Chris! $1uff has shot itself in the foot with this one.
    Regarding “…the ruthless dismantling of cultures that inevitably followed”
    This occurred in every single instance when a more advanced group took over lands. Take England as a classic example:
    The ‘Beaker People’ took over Neolithic Britain ~2000BC extinguishing the hunter/gatherers culture that was there before. The much more advanced Roman culture took over Britain when they invaded in 43AD. The Saxons invaded during the ‘dark ages’ wiping out what came before and that culture was subsequently supplanted by the Danes and Vikings who in turn were replaced by the more advances Normans after 1066.

    So as an Englishman by birth, who exactly should I be complaining to?

    The key point here is that each invasion brought with it technical and social advances . None of the this was ‘fair’ but it was inevitable. Ditto the European invasion of New Zealand. Just how much ‘Maori Culture’ is worth preserving in a practical sense? The brutality? The illiteracy? The cannibalism? In fact most Maori benefitted enormously from the arrival of Europeans: Rule of law. European food crops. Education. Science.

      • Whilst the language is a little harsh, he has a point.
        I would argue that culture that needs to be preserved artificially such as with much of the traditional Maori culture should not be preserved at all.
        Your culture is what you live on a daily basis not something you take out of the china cabinet once a month to look at.
        The reality is that too many people see Maori culture only through the lens of 200 years ago.
        But modern Maori are accountants, lawyers, baristas, rugby players etc.
        That is their culture, not grass skirts and whares.

        • I entirely agree with the OP, the legacy of Maori culture has very little utility or relevance, it is only sacred in so far as Maori can profit from it. What you speak of is New Zealand culture, an amalgamation of its constituents and heritage, no more distinctly Maori than European, a fusion for better or worse.

          • N6 and Jays. People on the outside, can’t really judge others’ culture, and nor should they.

            I regard the traditional Maori focus on communal well-being as a value which Pakeha could learn from – and it could swing into action for you one day too, and it happens selflessly, and you may cherish it as do I.

            • Quit the virtue signaling, its distasteful at best.
              It never fails to amaze me how rose tinted the glasses of people like yourself are when looking at Maori culture both past and present.
              Maori we every bit as vicious and devoid of morals as their colonial contemporaries. To pretend otherwise is laughable.
              The only difference between the two sides is that one was victorious and the other wasn’t.

              • Delighted to amaze you, my Christmas pleasure.

                Let’s leave it to the poets, shall we ? ( They do know what they are talking about – except for when they don’t.)

                “ For any eye is an evil eye
                that looks in on to a mood apart.”

                Robert Frost A Mood Apart

            • Snow White: “…..the traditional Maori focus on communal well-being as a value which Pakeha could learn from….”

              I’m sure that you didn’t intend to imply that there’s no pakeha focus on communal well-being. That would indeed come as a surprise to my Irish extended family. In my view, there’s a place at the right hand of God (so to speak) for some in particular. A couple of branches of my family emigrated as family groups, one lot under Julius Vogel’s assisted migration scheme.

              However. This reminded me of my comments on a Scoop story some time back, regarding undemocratic goings-on at WCC Council meetings.

              Another commenter linked to me a piece on “The Dig”, in which the author critiqued our democracy and spoke in glowing terms about the Maori values of conciliation and consent.

              I’d already read it, and made the following observation:

              “As part of an academic project, a family member has recently been researching the documented oral history of pre-European Maori habitation and conflict in the Auckland area. Having read the link that you posted, said family member remarked that conciliation and consent were not Maori values. Hongi Hika would have been very surprised to hear that they were. Likewise Te Kawau of Ngati Whatua. Prior to first European contact, NZ wasn’t a bucolic paradise: it was Hobbesian. Tribes were ruled by hereditary elites; slavery was the norm. Inter-tribal conflict was frequent and violent, cannibalism routinely practised.”

              So. Communal well-being may have been a value practised as much in the breach as in the observance.

              I’ve read all of Stuff’s pieces. Somewhere in there, I noticed Ngarimu Blair from Ngati Whatua, giving an account of Maori trading in the Auckland area in the mid-19th century.

              I was reminded further of my family member’s discoveries regarding who owns what in the Auckland isthmus. It turns out that Ngati Whatua had swindled Te Taou – the rightful owners – of much or most of their land. Orakei and other areas if I recall rightly. You may possibly remember the late Sir Hugh Kawharu – himself Te Taou – on the subject.

              Said family member remarked that it could justifiably constitute another claim to the ToW Tribunal.

              Just so as you know, I responded to both you and Martyn in that post of his about OT uplifts. Last I looked, he hasn’t published any of my comments. Except for some very brief ones.

              • D’Esterre – My experience of Maori communal focus, have been personal, and I will always be grateful. Having said that, another book not returned to me, documents Maori swiping land from each other up north, and in a very murderous fashion, making Parihaka look like a vicarage tea party. I will chase that book up. I have a reasonable library on the jurisprudence of the Treaty, but can’t keep up with my reading on other issues of interest.

                Speak to any Maori about their bloodthirsty slaughter
                of Chatham Island Moriori, and they deny any association with it, naming the tribe responsible – much is still tribal, hence hitches in Treaty Settlements, and these are their processes.

                We have regressed as a society, but I am not sure why. Ever since Key apparently announced he was to be the next PM of New Zealand, I think before he entered Parliament, I’ve had an open mind on that.

                • Snow White: “My experience of Maori communal focus, have been personal, and I will always be grateful.”

                  I’m pleased that your experience has been good. No doubt practices will vary from area to area. My own experience hasn’t been quite so unexceptionable, regrettably.

                  There is a tendency by some people to portray pre-European Maori society as being peaceable and non-violent. And of course that couldn’t be so: Maori are human, just like the rest of us.

                  Conflict is part of the human condition: humans frequently use violence to settle disputes. Maori are and were no exception.

                  My relative’s research bears that out.

                  “…another book not returned to me, documents Maori swiping land from each other up north, and in a very murderous fashion, making Parihaka look like a vicarage tea party.”

                  Sounds like the Auckland isthmus conflicts: they were egregiously violent. I wonder if it was Hugh Kawharu’s book: I’m pretty sure that he wrote about that era.

                  “We have regressed as a society, but I am not sure why.”

                  It does look like it. Aforementioned relative thinks it stems from the Treaty settlements. Their view is that in about another 10-20 years, there’ll need to be another round of Treaty settlements, to fix up the injustices and grievances created by the most recent (as yet unfinished) round.

                  I’m inclined to agree.

                  I also think that Elizabeth Rata correctly points to some of the factors. I didn’t agree with her when I first read her several years ago; now I think that she has a point:

                  https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/tough-talker-on-tribal-issues/GQQ2UO532SXLSBHHHSNTUJDXNQ/

                  https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/te-reo-immersion-attacked/S2YEIR2KJG6JLRR2KK7NLJASRE/

                  There is increasing pakeha scepticism about the Treaty settlements. That’s been a very large amount of taxpayer money applied to the settlements, yet the very poorest Maori are as badly-off as they ever were. Worse, if anything. I’ve always been a supporter of the Treaty settlements, but I too want to know what’s happened to all that money.

                  A combination of factors contributing to that regression, I guess.

        • Also agree that Andrew has a point as does Jays . . these opinions will of course not sit well with those who see culture as being something only possessed by those with as little connection to European settlement etc as possible (real or imagined).

      • covid is pa: “Wow! Andrew what a racist condescending prick you are.”

        Do you have a countervailing argument to propose? If not, best to keep shtum.

      • Yes ‘covid is pa’ I’m literally Hitler reincarnated for proposing that we treat people as individuals and equals rather than as racial stereotypes 😉

        And I suspect have a lot of support among Maori for this, seeing as the majority have put themselves on the general electoral roll.

        (There’s a much bigger issue here: The progressive left’s obsession with race. It’s an international problem. Can someone please explain this?)

        • I see you and d ass stirrer are now using the divide and conquer tactic as much as you try many of our people overwhelmingly voted for change. And they voted for Jacinda because they think they can trust her to deliver what she promised and they gave the majority of the Maori Labour party candidates the benefit of the dealt. If they don’t deliver they will be gone at the next election. Saying many of our people are on the General roll is the same as the majority of our children going to mainstream schools, so what we are locked into that thinking and the belief our language and culture has no value. Now we already know many of our children in our mainstream schools fail yet many of our children in Maori schools succeed, proving culture and identity can have positive benefits. Every time you and de stirrer are on this site you are always so negative and nasty about our people, what is a matter with you? And both of you never have a kind or positive word to say about our people, did you get beaten up by Maori kids at school and they took your lunch. Yes the past is the past but don’t expect us to sit back and continue to accept getting crapped on by the media in this country anymore. The media have used their powerful voice to marginalised us and portray us in a negative light and this is no longer acceptable. We have not had the power or control over who makes the main decision in our own country.

        • To be fair Andrew – it isn’t just race that progs are obsessed with. They’re also obsessed with gender (apparently we are still nowhere near “gender equality”), sexuality, and of course trans.

    • Andrew – The Europeans didn’t exactly “ invade “ New Zealand, the British crown signed a treaty with the tangata whenua, which hasn’t always been lived up to.

      The establishment of the Waitangi Tribunal, was an important step towards addressing past injustices, but the jurisprudence of the Treaty is still being addressed and argued about and disagreed about in various fora, and a bunch of Stuff journos announcing their adherence to it could be causing future trouble for themselves, and the same persons joining the white-is-bad chorus are being party to the divisiveness starting to dominate the political scene in New Zealand when it didn’t have to be this way, nor used to be, and is idiotic.

      • The Treaty is a fine starting point for a new nation, just as long as you read the original English version, rather than the revised version as proposed by sickly white liberals and iwi elite for their own personal benefit.
        Any claims that the chiefs didn’t understand what they were signing is easily refuted by reading the letters they wrote to each other discussing its implications. They’re in Te Papa.

        • A – Not comfortable with the word, “revised”, there were two three original versions traversing the country simultaneously at that time.

          Nor can anyone lump “the chiefs” together as one group, Maori were tribal, and still are in some ways, and nor can the understandings of some being attributed to all. Some didn’t sign.

          Fact is, Andrew, the decades of “harmonious” race relations in this country were in part due to Maori not being perceived as an economic threat. When Treaty payouts began, some commentators wailed like kiddies whose money boxes have been robbed, although in fact it didn’t impact on them at all.

          They’re the same ones who object to minimum wages, any sort of benefits, and not being permitted to pollute the cold night air by burning toxic substances; some Indigenous Studies Courses may also be uneven-handed. Such happens.

    • You do like writing crap, don’t you Andrew!

      By your narrative the Danes were more technically and socially advanced than the Romans, and the Maori were so ‘benefited’ by the invasion of Europeans they were nearly exterminated (around 1900).

      Yeah, Europeans are so ‘clever aren’t they: they brought a plethora pests and noxious species with them; land clearances (didn’t even bother to harvest the timber half the time and just burned it to create a monotonous monoculture, suitable for sheep and cows); industrial machinery that wrecked the land; a culture of looting and polluting, and no regard for the future; and of course, unsustainability, based on the importation of oil.

      If there had been no European invasion and if Europeans hadn’t been so keen to get machines to do the work, the Maori could well have carried continued to thrive for another 600 years.

      As it is, Europeans have fucked up everything, and no one gets through what Europeans have set in motion -geochemical instability.

      .

      • …the Maori could well have carried continued to thrive for another 600 years.

        That depends on your definition of thrive. A subsistence hunter-gatherer culture lead by warlords & riven by warmongering slave trading tribes of cannibals eating babies & small children as entree who’d rapidly extinguished other major protein sources.

        But hey, the arrival of Europeans offering a unique Treaty partnership for mutual benefit specifically acknowledging their rights & privileges as British subjects = Europeans was their downfall.

        • Thrive means live full and active lives and reproduce at such a rate as to maintain a stable population.

          The industrial model adopted by the British and spread around the globe by them -all that nineteenth century and twentieth century railway construction by British companies etc. and mass production of goods- is a model that dehumanises human life, and destroys the very systems necessary for the maintenance of life.

          The industrial system, brought to NZ by the British and promoted throughout the world by them, will result in the extinction of most species on this planet, including homo sapiens, in a matter of decades.

          Daily CO2 (CO2.earth)
          Nov. 29, 2020: 415.50 ppm
          Nov. 29, 2019: 410.67 ppm

          Why people think such as system -which is both suicidal and omnicidal- has merit baffles me completely.

        • “Subsistence hunter-gatherer”

          So Māori an Austronesian people with an ancient tradition of agriculture is a completely alien concept to you.

          • Andy K: “So Māori an Austronesian people with an ancient tradition of agriculture is a completely alien concept to you.”

            I think it’s well-known that the first settlers here brought cultivars with them from Polynesia. The problem was that, except for the far North, it was too cold here to grow the tropical plants they’d brought. I believe that the outside limit, even for the kumara, is the top of the South Island. So the skills required to grow those other cultivars would have gradually been lost.

            Certainly, when the first European explorers brought the potato, cabbage and carrot, local people quickly learned how to grow them.

            But skills will be lost, if the resources they require don’t exist in a new country. The Lapita people – ancestors of the present-day Polynesians – were skilled at pottery. But the islands of the Pacific lacked clays, so the skill was lost. Thus when the first Polynesians arrived here, they didn’t know how to make pottery, even though there are suitable clays here.

      • No invading Dane ever met a Roman. Instead Saxons might have met the remnants of the Romano-British around 500AD and quickly became the dominant culture. We don’t know what exactly happened but guesses are that it was horribly brutal. The Danes subsequently screwed over the Saxons a few hundred years later, forming the Danelaw in the eastern half of England.

      • Afewknowthetruth: “If there had been no European invasion and if Europeans hadn’t been so keen to get machines to do the work, the Maori could well have carried continued to thrive for another 600 years.”

        There was no invasion. And no. They couldn’t have carried on. By the time of first European contact (Tasman in 1642), they’d already eaten large flightless birds to extinction. The Royal Society observes that megafauna extinction had occurred by AD 1450, about 200 years after first arrival. And by that time, other protein sources were also in decline.

        Had the first European explorers not brought the potato, cabbage and carrot, and had Cook not returned with pigs (Captain Cookers), goats and chickens, there would likely have been widespread starvation and a population crash. It’s very likely that much of the pre-European inter-tribal fighting was over access to diminishing food resources.

        When Europeans brought foodstuffs and agricultural technology, Maori very quickly recognised their benefits and began to use them to their own advantage. Hence the trading Maori were able to carry on with European settlers, especially in the Auckland area.

    • How incredibly racist here is a man who knows what is best it seems.

      How incredibly simplistic this response is. Why shouldn’t any indigenous group live the way they wish without the Brits and all the other invading countries deciding their way is best. They brought with them disease, brutality, murder, rape and a great deal of stealing.

      Tell those tribes in the Amazon that are slowing having their homeland invaded by ‘progress’ they can be educated and learn about science.. yeah right.

      It is not for me as a pakeha of British stock to tell Maori what part of their culture is worth saving.

    • So you’ll be happy to be subservient to a future domineering invader? Communist China for example?

      As far as Māori culture is concerned, if not worthy of preservation, how is much early European documentation, fascination and admiration of it to be explained?

    • If European culture is so superior, how are the many Pākehā-Māori to be explained, those who turned their backs upon their “superior” European background and lived alongside Māori according to their ways?

      • Andy K
        I did the responsible thing and tried to educate myself a bit in what is the meaning of ‘Maori ways’. So I found, and twice read a paper titled ‘Mātauranga Māori’. The opening paragraph asserts that “It’s about a Māori way of being and engaging in the world – in its simplest form, it uses kawa (cultural practices) and tikanga (cultural principles) to critique, examine, analyse and understand the world.”
        I then tried to find something in that paper that was was of practical use. Something I could understand. To be honest, the whole thing had not one concrete bit of practical knowledge.
        So now I am relying on you to help us and explain to us what you mean by…”turned their backs upon their “superior” European background and lived alongside Māori according to their ways?”

      • And K: “If European culture is so superior…”

        At the time of first contact, European culture was indisputably superior in every way.

        But it doesn’t at all follow that Europeans themselves were or are superior. That’s a mistake made by many people.

        In his book “Guns, Germs and Steel”, written in the 1990s, I think, Jared Diamond gives a very readable account of how Europe got to be the way that it is. And how other countries didn’t. It has nothing whatsoever to do with ethnic superiority: we’re all humans, and skin colour is an extrinsic characteristic only.

        To say that at first contact, Maori culture was Stone Age, is simply stating a fact. It isn’t a criticism.

  7. Stuff the sorrowful essays.
    If these newspapers and their internet portal really give a stuff about the poor and disadvantaged in New Zealand, they will campaign stridently and unceasingly for the changes that may help to put things right:
    for the Government to rapidly build 100,000 state homes for lifetime subsidised rent, and to require every home to have a warrant of fitness or be banned from tenancy;
    for the Government to immediately implement the recommendations of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group, and for a universal basic income for all adults;
    for a universal child benefit, and for free, universal comprehensive child care, for really free, equitable, state schooling, with free lunches in all schools;
    for free, universal, comprehensive health care, including dental, optical, and aural, equally accessible to all.
    And to pay for all this, and to reduce the ever-widening gulf between haves and have-nots, demand that the Government tax land, and reduce income tax and GST: tax wealth, not work and food.
    If Stuff and its papers have the guts to campaign for these they will shout louder than 1000 pages of sorries. That’s the truth about Stuff.

    • Where is personal responsibility in your thinking. I am all for the state giving a hand up but not a hand out.
      State houses should have a limited tenancy period unless the person has a mental or physical disability. A warrent of fitness for rent is a good idea especially if enough state houses are built to keep rents down from private sector
      Good quality education free dental and medical care should be available to all children . Free contraception and financial planning should be available to all which may help stem the flow of children born into poverty. This would mean those having children could afford to feed and cloth them.
      I would think this would be self funding as there would be less hospitalization and less crime .

  8. What a load of twaddle whoever owns and controls the media have the biggest voice and influence over the people. The mainstream media have had a huge influence on how people are perceived, judged and treated. But now we have social media and many have abandoned television and the newspapers that once wielded influential power. ‘Some will retreat deeper into what is still its racist heartland’. I think some have already retreated but many don’t have to retreat into racist heartland they hide like cowards behind keyboards. ‘Some of these Pakeha will reluctantly abandon their country’. Many of our Maori people have had to move to Australia to get a decent job and pay and so have many other NZers who are non Maori, so what is you point? We as a country have to face up to our true history warts and all. Nobody is perfect but given the upheaval of this pandemic we need to work together for the greater good. Doing this will require us to address our past, deal with our guilt and forgive so that we can move on and have a prosperous future.

  9. Well said, Chris. I couldn’t be bothered reading much of the Stuff, stuff. I just groaned, and thought I hope they know what they are unleashing here. They are engulfed in ignorance.

    I recently read, and will reread, Robert’s biography of, Fitzgerald, coincidentally, founder of the Press. I already knew, the enormity of the vision, grit, and often idealism, of the pioneer settlers of New Zealand, the depth of knowledge and the scientific curiosity of the intrepid explorers who mapped and recorded the country, and the unrelenting hard work carried out under much harsher circumstances than many of the leaders had ever previously encountered.

    It was not a simple matter of walking the trendy Milford Track, and claiming, “ This is ours! “

    How quickly the alluvial plain of Christchurch was established as an architecturally attractive , well-streeted city with hospital and schools, is mind-numbingly impressive. How quickly the southern Scots constructed and endowed the first university is particularly poignant compared with their current function as money grubbing
    job training warehouses churning out: Stuff.

    There was never a time when greedy colonialists waltzed into instant mansions wearing velvet and satin, sipping wine under magically conjured-up chandeliers like Hollywood or Disneyland fantasies.

    It was a hard grind. The women may have had two carefully preserved dresses, and hands imprinted with digging, gardening, cooking and preserving, and making the candles for the freezing cold cabins and the chandeliers. In early 20thC New Zealand, rural women had the highest suicide rate. I doubt that the Stuff females clad in sweated labour fashion labels, could start to comprehend living without electric light, or a radio, and not over-communicated with. Often barely communicated with at all, apart from their infants. Their men were busy. Everyone was.

    Fact. At the time the first operas were composed in Italy, the islands of the Pacific were still Stone Age. They occupied different places in time. Some still do. This country had the land which more powerful countries wanted. That does not mean that all the pioneers who helped to develop New Zealand were other than hard working innocents, and I won’t accept ignorami retrospectively equating them with the ruthless 1%’ers who exploit everyone who they can today. Nothing’s that simple.

    I always thought Richard Long a prat when he edited the Dominion – the Dom’s insistence on adding “s’s” to Maori words irritated me, not because it was racist, but because it was ignorant smart-bottoming. Bear in mind, that in the same time span, the Dominion was meanly anti-women too, with e.g. Frank Haden’s crude comments about bearded ladies, and the sisterhood, although I think that neither gent objected to the company of women per se.

    When will Stuff staff troll history for the damage the Dom did to New Zealand women, and apologise to us for perpetuating female stereotypes, and for playing into the hands of the men who batter us and kill us in
    world leading numbers. I’m waiting.

    • Great Stuff Snow White keep it up. As a sixth generation pakeha I rolled my eyes and yawned at the Stuff headlines. I have no intention of reading their drivel.I have lived most of my life in an area of NZ /Aotearoa which is predominately Maori. My offspring all speak Te Reo. I have studied NZ history since I was at Primary school thru to tertiary level and I have never felt guilty for being who I am. I have learnt so much about identity and the value of whakapapa from living among Maori. Because one’s turangawaewae and whakapapa are inextricably linked if you are of this land. So for all of those born in Europe who feel compelled to denigrate and condescend to native born kiwis about the value of the indigenous culture of this land I suggest you actually make the effort learn what that culture is .

    • Snow White: “I always thought Richard Long a prat when he edited the Dominion – the Dom’s insistence on adding “s’s” to Maori words irritated me, not because it was racist, but because it was ignorant smart-bottoming.”
      All newspapers, I think, pluralised Maori with an s till the end of the 1980s when the Maori Language Commission, established in 1987, began to agitate against it. The Dominion held out longer than others. Its house rule was that words assimilated into English from other languages and that commonly took a plural s in conversational English should do so in the printed newspaper to maintain colloquiality, if there is such a word. Thus Israeli an kibbutz became kibbutzes, not kibbutzim, a French chateau became chateaus, not chateaux. The house rule was to avoid “smart-bottoming” fancy non-English plurals. True, The Dominion was slow to respond to the zeitgeist, but respond it did. Yet now, 20 years later we still naturally use the plural Kiwis when we refer to people, but kiwi of birds, do we not?

      • I still think Long a prat. I wrote a letter to the Dom in 1991 or 92, referring to the spirit of the Treaty; I think I used the word wairua, which was natural to me at that time, in the context of what I was doing, and I thought, self-evident. They substituted an English equivalent and ruined the aesthetics ! They did used to pontificate about adding s’s to words, English style, and as a one-time language teacher, I thought it lazy.

        I also was also proud of my correct pronunciation of local place names, but avoid using Maori words at all now – including Kia Ora – with pronunciation dragons waiting to pounce on faults, and cultural appropriation tigers stalking the race jungle. If I am still alive in 2040 when Wellington is designated to be a Te Reo city, I will maintain a silence – if still compos mentis.

        • Snow White: “I also was also proud of my correct pronunciation of local place names, but avoid using Maori words at all now – including Kia Ora – with pronunciation dragons waiting to pounce on faults, and cultural appropriation tigers stalking the race jungle. If I am still alive in 2040 when Wellington is designated to be a Te Reo city, I will maintain a silence – if still compos mentis.”

          Heh! That notion of a te reo city: pie in the sky, with no costings. The proponents hadn’t even thought about how much it’d cost, I hear. Like so many such projects, I’ll believe it when I see it. If I’m still in the Here, of course….

          Having learned te reo all those years ago, my pronunciation is excellent. And it helps that I have a good “ear” for languages (an inherited characteristic which I’ve generously passed on…). Nowadays, though, I’m not as punctilious about pronunciation as I once was.

          “…..pronunciation dragons waiting to pounce on faults, and cultural appropriation tigers stalking the race jungle.”

          Haha…neatly put! And herewith one of the reasons I’m not now so careful with pronunciation. I’ve had a gutsful of the pronunciation dragons and the cultural appropriation tigers. A pox on them, say I! And if I can get up their collective noses, I will.

    • Snow White: “How quickly the southern Scots constructed and endowed the first university is particularly poignant compared with their current function as money grubbing job training warehouses churning out: Stuff.”

      Haha! Yes indeed. My late mother – whose alma mater Otago was – would be mortified at what it’s become.

      “There was never a time when greedy colonialists waltzed into instant mansions wearing velvet and satin, sipping wine under magically conjured-up chandeliers…”

      You’re quite right. I’ve pointed out before on this blogsite that when the first settlers arrived, there was nothing. Certainly no housing, and NZ has been playing catch-up in that respect, ever since. One set of my grandparents lived in a tent for a time in the late 19c-early 20c. Life was tough.

      “That does not mean that all the pioneers who helped to develop New Zealand were other than hard working innocents, and I won’t accept ignorami retrospectively equating them with the ruthless 1%’ers who exploit everyone who they can today. Nothing’s that simple.”

      Agreed. Young people who are ignorant of their history: please take note.

      “….the Dominion was meanly anti-women too, with e.g. Frank Haden’s crude comments about bearded ladies, and the sisterhood…”

      That it was. But I suspect that contemporary “woke” staff at Stuff wouldn’t recognise prejudice of that sort if they fell over it. Or they might make the argument that it was free speech: this when they’ve mostly turned off comments for fear of offending people. And they’re apologising for being mean to Maori. Grrr….

      “….apologise to us for perpetuating female stereotypes, and for playing into the hands of the men who batter us and kill us in world leading numbers. I’m waiting.”

      Ha! Hell will freeze over first, I suspect. Sheilas don’t count, it seems.

      • In the 1990’s, disliking Long, I wrote a tongue-in-cheek letter to the Dom, congratulating them on an outstanding editorial about Anzac. I received a personal letter in the post from another male journalist, saying that he in fact wrote that particular piece. I now regret not acknowledging it, as he did do such a very fine job.

  10. This is an excellent series on Maori TV in my opinion.
    ‘Artefact’.
    https://www.maoritelevision.com/shows/artefact/S01E001/artefact-series-1-episode-1
    Normal people debate, concur, learn, empathise with, relate to, while abnormal people capitalise on, create acrimony, divide to profit from and patronise.
    Don’t they though? Naughty little abnormal people. Naughty little ‘news’ outlets, naughty little banksters.
    Naughty little colonisers murdered and swindled Maori then just like they’re doing to this day.
    Aye Boys?

  11. In this our AO/NZ we have become a country full of apologists for never ending historical grudges, pardon my ‘white privilege’ but something my ancestors did over 100 years ago was not of my doing so why should I feel a burden of remorse for it?
    Why does the media outlets like stuff pay attention to the wars of the Maori, for example, Te Rauparaha slaying the Maupoko tribe for grievances he had because they kidnapped his daughter.
    No white men are the most evil they say, as they drive around in mercedes Benz cars, and type their articles into apple mac books.

  12. I’m pretty sure they aren’t making that kind of an apology. This isn’t the Japanese government apologising for war crimes made in 1943, or somesuch. These are the kids of twitter culture rolling with and positioning themselves for the sharp end of cancel culture. Communication isn’t about communication anymore, and Stuff.co.nz haven’t been about news for a very long time.

  13. I didn’t read the articles because the headlines were cringe worthy enough.
    Undoubtedly they will cause a backlash at the ballot box as well as against Stuff itself, so Maori have plenty to “thank” stuff for there.
    Most people will have a similar reaction to my own, which is that I have nothing to apologise for.
    I’m not suggesting I’ve never done anything bad to a Maori (I’m sure if I trawl my memory I can find some minor incidents).
    However none of these would have been done because of their race, but rather because of either my failings or theirs.

    This shameless display of wokery will hopefully see the demise of Stuff hastened as they are largely worthless anyway.

  14. Better late than never for stuff I say…if it gets people thinking and putting the record straight, or at least “straighter” which is probably the best that can be hoped for. This is no “cultural cringe”, there has been serious material and cultural damage done by reactionary views and messaging, provided by the owners of provincial and national news papers ‘bully pulpits’.

    So many examples are discoverable e.g. Moutoa Gardens, Whanganui, 1995. 79 day occupation and the papers did a stitch up of Te Rūnanga Pākaitore, barely giving the Iwi a look in, or backgrounding the issues, while devoting pages to then Mayor Chas Poynter to blather on and inflame Pākehā conservatives.
    Over the years I have seen up close, the filthy racist bias of provincial Editors, with in one case their own personal swipe card to the local Police station!

    The NZ media has a long, dishonourable track record as to who else they have misreported and straight out lied about such as working class action and unions. But their disservice to Māori people ranks as the worst due to the downright disrespect and practical implications for NZ’s recovery from post colonial fall out.

    • Part of the middle class Pakeha narrative was class war by corporate media against the working class. Seen as Maori and Polynesiaan or exploited migrant worker, while the land owners benefited from rising property values.

      And of course this includes Maori land without housing, because banks don’t lend for property on such land.

  15. The problem is that dissing the past from the present also has to be explained and in such a way as its points to the future. The European global conquest continues today but now confronted by its ‘other’ as an rising imperialism that began as its subject, China. In this NZ figures as a interested bystander.

    But so to does the superficial revision of history misrepresent imperialism in its age of decline and fall by dissolving everything into an the ahistorical chaos of postmodernism.

    So we have to explain how looking back at capitalism’s past through its late capitalist post-modernist lens comes to grip with neither unless it also sees into the future.

    Marxism, born of the bourgeoisie, is a world view that originates as a critique of the dark history of capitalism, understanding the necessity of its revolutionary origins and eventual demise, having formed the embryo of the commune that will return humanity to nature in the future.

    So we don’t look to the role of those caught up in capitalisms rise and fall, the actors good, bad and ugly, or the media that went along for the ride, for answers to our current predicament, but rather to the scientific critique of the social contradictions that drove and continue to drive that history.

    When Marxism becomes once again a common currency of social critique, and pomo a footnote of prehistory, we will see that most commentary up to now was scratching around on the surface of things, in ignorance of the forces that drove the past and which also open the road to the future.

  16. “To apologise for one’s history is to invite those wronged by it to seek either restitution or retribution – or, maybe, both.”

    What unalloyed horsesh*t.
    Not to mention alarmist.

    Here, fixed it for you: “To apologise for one’s history is to invite those on the wrong side of history to consider how they still benefit, to this day, from that history, and how little those wronged benefit by comparison.”

    A tad wordy, but much less wannabe-sophist.*

    *Sources: literally any measurement of average Maori health, wealth and influence after a coupla centuries of western “civilisation.”

    • “The wrong side of history”, Jason. That one line says it all.

      History has no “sides” – other than those people living in the present choose to impose upon the social forces of the past.

      Human-beings do, of course, pick “sides” in the present – and seldom does any good come of it.

      Regardless of the dangers, you have clearly picked yours.

  17. Maybe if Stuff gave a voice to people like Hone Harawira this would mean a lot more. They won’t of course because the media’s job is to maintain the established order. The fact that they have published the apology is a sure sign that race divisions are no longer useful to maintaining that order.

    I don’t think it’s all bad that they want to acknowledge how the media helped kept Maori ‘in their place’ but would any of the journalists working today like to apologise for what they themselves have done? Maybe they could acknowledge their poor performance around WMDs and the Iraq war. Maybe their biased coverage of vaguely left wing ideas or the inane attacks on David Cunliffe when he couldn’t remember a letter he wrote 11 years earlier are worthy of an apology?

    There’s a long list but I suspect we will need to wait a few more decades before the are acknowledged

    • Aaron. This is the same media who adulated Key the serial hair puller, established liar, seller of our, this country’s assets, tried to change the flag of a country his family had been in for five minutes and kindly provided with a state house subsidised by we, the New Zealand tax payers, and blithely chirruped that it been settled peacefully. They worshipped him for no good reason, helped keep him in power.

      Now they have discovered Maori. We who have had Maori relatives and friends and colleagues all our adult lives, suddenly find we that are all being polarised and pushed into stances we have never taken, when it is they, the shallow superficial media who are projecting all their own inadequacies onto everybody else, instead of taking responsibility for their own failure to do their own jobs properly.

      They are too stupid to discern the damage that they are doing by designating one race of people bad simply because of their colour. This is racism.It is is woefully ignorant, and a dreadful thing to be doing to all the children stuck growing up here.

      Fortunately fewer and fewer people buy the print media, and if politics and knowledge now emanate from twittering and tweeting, issues last but a few days. Giving loaded guns to testosterone and drug and alcohol fuelled malcontents is irresponsible, as is peddling ill- informed versions of history to those who may know no better than they themselves do.

  18. The taxpayer may be paying for
    this ‘piece’ from Stuff, via the quality journalism fund, I wouldn’t be surprised. Lol

  19. This is probably one of the most ahistorical polemics published by an author of the TDB.

    Yes, sure, without doubts, the feudal and capital classes of the European nations have been main global driving forces of colonialism, exploitation, destruction, never-ending greed.

    Many still are.

    Even a positivist, dialectical position will not be able to change the facts on effects and impact of European imperialism.

    For this subject, the only useful analytical terminology is along the lines of class-structure. Under such criteria the ‘actual winners and losers’ of colonialism can be identified with comparative ease.

    Besides, the header of this article is nationalistic crap, if not a purposeful insult by exaggeration.

    Stuff NZ has shown a level of public leadership and positive mind-setting that should be fully acknowledged.

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  20. What a mean spirited and petty response to a brave and challenging series of articles by a main stream media organization. For all it’s faults and flaws it show’s a genuine progressive and forward thinking editorial board.
    What struck me the most – as a middle class Pakeha – was the personal stories from the last decade (not ancient history) by ordinary Maori NZer’s and the effect the media had on them at an emotional level. It completely opened my eyes and I experienced genuine empathy for what it must be like to see your people constantly derided and persistently highlighted for particular crimes and behavior in local and national media.
    As for a fear of some racist backlash this just seems like a ridiculous reason to not support progressive actions. We probably shouldn’t bargain for better working conditions there might be push back from management. We probably shouldn’t go on the HART march against the Spring Bok tour there might be a backlash from Rugby supporters and the police. Probably better to stay home and do nothing just in case racist or unpleasant people get upset.

    • Great comment, because it is a mean and petty expose by Trotter, who thinks history defines everything.
      What we can do to try and restore fairness in society should not be dictated by those who wrote the rules of that injustice.
      Personally, I think he cares more about his property price.
      Than any sort of resolution to past thieving.

      • To: The well-named SOB.

        To suggest that history does not define everything is to suggest that who your parents are, where you were born, what language you speak, the circumstances in which you were raised, the level of education you received are utterly irrelevant to the person you are today. Clearly, not a sustainable proposition.

        Mutatis mutandis, the same applies to nations.

        Oh, and when you think about it, even the price of the house I live in is the product of historical forces over which I have had absolutely no control. A bit like the condition of contemporary New Zealand!

    • Let me assure you, Peter, that fear of retribution has never stopped me from doing what I believe to be the right thing – and that doesn’t include easy tweeny things like marches or demos buffered by other people.

      If you think it is right for Stuff to brand contemporary Pakeha as colonial exploiters, then do so, but it does not stand to reason, and it is divisive, and it achieves nothing positive.

      Stuff and you may have lived sheltered lives unaware of the day to day discrimination experienced by various others, and Stuff may have chosen to keep folk like you ignorant of the harsh reality of the real world, but there are others who do know, and who do act for the benefit of others, and who do not deserve to be demonised wholesale for absolutely no good reason.

      The next time a young white police officer like Constable Matthew Hunt gets gunned down dead, ask yourself a couple of questions, and then answer them.

      Did you know that Orthodox Jews pray saying, “Thank God I’m not a woman” ?

      • Snow White: “If you think it is right for Stuff to brand contemporary Pakeha as colonial exploiters, then do so, but it does not stand to reason, and it is divisive, and it achieves nothing positive.”

        I completely agree. To be blunt, it’s mendacious to characterise contemporary pakeha as “colonial exploiters”. It’s a loaded statement, of the “have you stopped beating your wife yet” sort.

        I’m infuriated by Stuff’s turning off of comments, because the staff don’t want to put in the work of moderation. It robs all of us of the opportunity to challenge some of their more tendentious articles. I frequently won’t read pieces unless comments are open. Why would I bother, when I’m afforded no opportunity to challenge disingenuousness or errors of fact? Never mind outright lies.

        I was enraged by the following piece, printed just after the March shootings last year. No comments open, of course, which allows commentators to write any old twaddle they like, and the reader can’t respond. Grrr…. And if anybody needed challenging, it’s that Elder woman.

        https://i.stuff.co.nz/national/christchurch-shooting/111582476/wellmeaning-pkeh-you-must-get-out-of-the-way-of-the-muslim-communitys-healing

        • Stuff has a lot of apologizing to do on their blatant moral panic incitement after Christchurch, if they are genuinely going to address their horrendous imbalance of fact.

          The laws they enabled by printing unquestioned lies have changed our society and made us less safe.

          We dont really need another awful spinoff/huff post/ABC Australia or RNZ to beat ourselves with to please our self appointed moral elite.

          Human nature hasn’t changed, in the Middle Ages these woke puritans would have been the clergy, bringing Christ’s revisionism to the sins of the people, they are no different and no less hypocritical.

  21. The Colonials found it easy to overwhelm Maori by their traditional divide & rule strategy. Once they became the majority in NZ and were able to keep Ngapuhi and Te Arawa in their homelands, they imported homeless convicts , gave then a rifle and invaded Taranaki and the Waikato and confiscated the lands. Whatever lands they didnt confiscate they alienated and stole by other methods.
    Basically those who migrated to NZ were stateless and homeless peasants. They were given land for their services and suddenly become landowners and Governors which they would never have attained back home.
    The real history of NZ can be easily uncovered by a few taps of the keyboard.

  22. Yes, Nikorima, a few keystrokes can take you to many strange places – like the alternate universe in which your bogus version of NZ history enjoys the status of truth!

    Rather than rely on the Internet, why not try reading a few history books? Those of Keith Sinclair, Jamie Belich and Michael King would be a good place to start.

    You will learn there about the NZ Company, about the high-born high-country graziers of Canterbury, about the Free Kirk Presbyterian settlement of Otago and Southland. You would also learn about the land granted to the Imperial soldiers who participated in the invasion of the Waikato – a common way of paying off colonial conquests since the days of the Roman Empire.

    Most of all, you would learn the difference between the history of New Zealand and the history of Australia!

    • Chris, Yes they are good history books together with many dozens of other informative publications which I have read. A lot of those publications are now available on line together with old NZ newspapers, manuscripts, Parliamentary papers, Native Land Court minutes, Waitangi Tribunal reports, thesis, and other records are readily available on line.
      That’s where the real story about the invasion of Waikato, and the land wars culminating at Te Ranga/Gate pa can be found.
      I’ll keep to my version of history.

  23. Thank you Chris Trotter for your writing, and initiating such a relevant and timely discussion. I think it is especially important, both historically and in light of the present, to consider this topic. I think we have a rare opportunity in our current ‘altered’ state to contribute something more to the common good through its reflection.

  24. The iwi or kiwi narrative here, suggests many have not moved on from Orewa 2004-2005 era.

    Once upon a time corporate media provided news for the colonist, then the Pakeha settler who controlled parliament. With the demographics changed by migration (business friendly neio-liberal global market policy settings), 21st C MSM has to adapt or diminish down to a partisan media size (paywall Auckland Herald for the ZB listeners and stories about homelessness in Northland for the Auckland brown people to consider when paying their high rents).

  25. It was an apology for how the media reported that history. Not for the history, media were not directly responsible for that.

  26. Black American political economist, Thomas Sowell – one the most important though largely unsung public intellectuals of the last 100 years – had this to say about ethnocentric part-Maori and their white liberal stooges:

    “Anyone who studies the history of ideas should notice how much more often people on the political left, more so than others, denigrate and demonise those who disagree with them — instead of answering their arguments.”

    “One of the painful signs of years of dumbed-down education is how many people are unable to make a coherent argument. They can vent their emotions, question other people’s motives, make bold assertions, repeat slogans– anything except reason.”

    When ethnocentric part-Maori wank on about ‘racism’ what they actually mean is placing it under new management.

    Theirs.

    Have a free definitions lesson

    DEFINITIONS LESSON

    “Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man’s genetic lineage” – Ayn Rand

    Racism is often conflated by the ignorant with simple prejudice, which it is not. Principled opposition to unearned racial privilege is not racism. Nor is it typically evidence of prejudice.

    There is only one race. The human race. Much of what is commonly referred to as “racism” is actually ethnocentricism.

    And the most disgustingly prejudiced, ethnocentric people in this country are part-Maori who have raised up one group of ancestors while trampling down another to identify monoculturally as “Maori,” chopping whole branches out of their family trees in order to do so.

    Those who believe in a single standard of citizenship, colourblind government, and the abolition of unearned privileges for part-Maori are the complete opposite of their ethnocentric opponents.

    But the actual racists have carried out a clever “bait and switch,” and conned the liberals seeking public virtue-signalling and moral preening opportunities into accepting their redefinition.

    As black American political economist, Thomas Sowell, reminds us: “Sixty years ago if you believed everybody should play by the same rules and be judged by the same standards, you were a radical. Thirty years ago, you were a liberal. Today, you’re a ‘racist.’”

    Racism is a different beast altogether. It occurs where a group of prejudiced, ethnocentric individuals get together to colonise or create a system affording them separate, different, or superior rights to everyone else on the basis of group membership.

    In a free society all citizens enjoy individual equality in citizenship. This is so whether some of a citizen’s ancestors arrived in a canoe in 1350, a sailing vessel in 1850, an ocean liner in 1950, or more recently by airliner. Even someone who put his hand up 30 seconds ago at a swearing-in ceremony is entitled to all the rights of citizenship. Prior arrival or ancestral longevity in the land is no basis for special privilege.

    Group rights are anathema to a free society. They create two classes of citizenship where only one existed before. Group rights require the intervention of an activist government forcibly taking rights from one group to bestow upon another. As Richard Prebble reminds us: “One group’s positive discrimination is another group’s negative discrimination.”

    In Preferential Policies: An International Perspective, Thomas Sowell records the downstream effect of government-sponsored identity politics. Touted as promoting inter-group harmony, Sowell found that wherever such policies had been tried, they invariably expanded over time in scale and scope, benefited already advantaged members of the preference group (those with the smarts to work the system), and led to increased rather than decreased inter-group polarisation. In many places they have brought about decades-long civil wars.

    Of course, any downstream proposal that the beneficiaries of state-sponsored identity politics revert to being treated the same as everyone else will make such groups squeal like stuck pigs. As Thomas Sowell reminds us: “When people get used to preferential treatment, equal treatment seems like discrimination.’

    I will leave it to readers to determine whether New Zealand is a racist country, and if so, in whose favour this racism operates.
    ENDS

  27. Chris: “…..the apologies being offered by these radical journalists (who clearly despise everything “New Zealand” stands for)….”

    Indeed. I’m reminded of my youth, when I learned to speak te reo, in an attempt to better communicate with the Maori families with whom I worked.

    I discovered that my newly-learned language wasn’t always received with approbation by those same families.

    There was some resentment that a pakeha could speak their language. Yet there was also resentment at pakeha not knowing the language and culture, and therefore being unable to pronounce Maori names correctly. So we couldn’t win either way.

    At that time, I also discovered that some native speakers (of whom there were still a number: one of them taught me) referred to “born-agains”: Maori who’d just discovered their culture and were learning te reo as a second language.

    And the “wannabes”: pakeha such as me, who with the best of intentions had learned the language.

    It’s my view that the radical journalists, to whom you refer, fall into either of two camps. They’ll be “born-agains”, because the evidence suggests that there are now no native speakers left among people younger than me, or very much younger than me.

    Or they’ll be “wannabes”: pakeha or recent migrants who’ve possibly learned a bit of te reo, know a little bit about the culture, and have bought right into the “Maori right, everyone else wrong” schtick.

    These are the people attempting to change NZ’s name to Aotearoa by its repetitive use, not by mandate. For that reason, I resist it as much as possible.

    “Some of these Pakeha will reluctantly abandon their country.”

    Yup. That’s what we’re contemplating, even at our time of life. And I’m bloody angry that we’re even having to consider this path (though grateful that we likely have somewhere else to go.). I was born here: this is my country too, yet we’re increasingly being made to feel unwelcome.

    “Some will retreat deeper into what is still its racist heartland.”

    Can I make a plea for the “racism” epithet not to be used in connection with what’s happening here? My generation understood that racism is the preserve of governments, which can enact laws and bring about societal arrangements which discriminate, ether for or against, particular groups. On that definition, the Maori seats are racist.

    But what individuals think or say isn’t racism. It may be prejudice or bigotry, but that isn’t the same thing. People understandably don’t like being called racist, and it tends to shut down debate. Which is unhelpful at present.

    “And some will struggle to preserve the nation they have grown up in. A nation whose true history is one of Maori and Pakeha finding more and more to be proud of in the way each ethnicity has adapted to the presence of the other.”

    And that true history has involved a bucket load of intermarriage: as those of us whose ancestors came here in the 19th century can attest. There can be few pakeha families in that category which don’t have Maori connections. My own family certainly does, along with many, many others.

    Good luck to those who try to preserve what we thought we had here. I’m done with it.

    At present, I think I’m justified in characterising NZ as a god-forsaken little outpost at the arse-end of nowhere.

    If the radicals have their way, it’ll become a woke hellhole at the arse-end etc.

    • D’Esterre
      Interesting what you say about learning maori and being resented for it. I have seen enthusiastic, well educated young people not only learning the language but also seeking to champion maori issues in the interests of integrating into a community. It can be a delicate balance. When many maori do not speak the language themselves, though more now learn, the psychology can be of showing these people up. Of being more maori than maori are. It is understandable that this will cause resentment rather than gratitude or inclusion in some hearts.
      My resolve has been that the best we can do is to behave like decent human beings of whatever our history is. But I doubt very much that there is a better country to go to. Albeit that race relations seem worse than they were while I was growing up. What I think happened was that rogernomics eradicated from this country a niche that many maori fit into very comfortably. It is maori who have been disenfranchised by that philosophy more than any other group, and Geoff Palmer’s awakening of the treaty by including a reference to it in legislation for the first time in 150 years as a sop to help that medicine go down only gave a focus to the resentment that disenfranchisement caused.
      It is the present and the future we need to get right, not the past, though understanding the past is essential to that end.
      Cheers D J S

      • Geoffrey Palmer is also on record crIticising women who dye their hair. Hmm.

        At the time the principles of the Treaty were first required to be acknowledged in relevant legislation, this may have been academic discourse being transposed to the law makers, rightfully, I think, and thought then that it was done with the best of intentions.
        Unintended consequences may have kicked in, laws not always well constructed.

        Like D’Esterre, I think we have regressed as a country, but not just in race relations, we have become more parochial, intolerant, and ignorant – like Christchurch in the 50’s -and the wedge being placed between major ethnicities is a societal tragedy.

      • David Stone: as so often, I agree with you.

        “When many maori do not speak the language themselves, though more now learn, the psychology can be of showing these people up. Of being more maori than maori are. It is understandable that this will cause resentment rather than gratitude or inclusion in some hearts.”

        Yup. Though when I learned in the 70s, there were native speakers. And it was pre-Rogernomics, so there wasn’t that issue to get in the way. And of course not everybody was resentful. But some were. And some were scornful of our efforts to get acquainted with the language.

        “….rogernomics eradicated from this country a niche that many maori fit into very comfortably. It is maori who have been disenfranchised by that philosophy more than any other group….”

        Yes, I think that there’s something in this. People who have, as you say, been disenfranchised, will tend to circle the wagons around what they perceive to be uniquely theirs.

        “….Geoff Palmer’s awakening of the treaty by including a reference to it in legislation for the first time in 150 years as a sop to help that medicine go down only gave a focus to the resentment that disenfranchisement caused.”

        I agree with this. Palmer has a lot to answer for in that regard. The so-called “principles” were a post facto attempt to freight meanings on to the Treaty that went far beyond what the text can bear, or the signatories could have imagined or intended.

        I’m among the many people who, at the time, heard him trying – and failing – to explain them. Winston Peters was one who called him out on it.

        Elizabeth Rata is another who’s sceptical about the role of the Treaty, and of the whole bicultural approach. When I first read her many years ago, I disagreed with her. Now, with the passage of time and subsequent developments, I think she’s right.

        https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/tough-talker-on-tribal-issues/GQQ2UO532SXLSBHHHSNTUJDXNQ/

        “It is the present and the future we need to get right, not the past….”

        Exactly. In my view, it’s not just unhelpful to focus on the past: it’s potentially dangerous, and it’s not difficult to see why.

        We have family in central Europe. Everyone is familiar with the truly awful things which happened in that part of the world during WWII.

        The thing is, none of our relatives was born till after the war. They’re not responsible for what happened; nor should they be made to feel that they are. Their view is that there’s no good to be found in looking back: they cannot undo what was done. It is best to look forward. I’ve also come round to this way of thinking.

        With regard to Germany, you’ll no doubt be aware that the citizens there have had the Holocaust as part of the school curriculum since just after WWII. They haven’t been allowed to forget it. Our impression from news coverage and from talking to relatives is that this strategy has backfired to some extent. There’s more scepticism than we thought there would be.

        Some citizens flatly refuse to believe it, we were told, while many think that it’s been overstated. Understandably, they have difficulty believing that their grandparents’ generation could have been party to such horrors. Any of us would feel similarly, I’m guessing.

        Where NZ is concerned, we desperately need to abandon the bicultural, racial approach to our political arrangements, and accept that this is a modern representative democracy. We have citizens from all over the world; have had from the very beginning of European settlement. Our democracy must work for all of us. Biculturalism especially cannot be made to work here, without undermining democracy for the rest of us.

  28. I, and many another, haven’t read a one of their stories, though they are right. Negative is always beat by positive, see Reagan over Carter. Glad they said it. Me telling my Scottish NZ relatives about our crimes got resentment.

  29. Seeing so much news through the new Stuff I wonder if their lens is too liberal. They present our cause as near the neck of the 84ist state. Are they wrong?

    Their apology to Maori was right. Trotter questions ‘how it will go over’. When truth has delivered 36 years of the powerful trumping you then you might consider the same.

  30. Your headline is bullsh. The beauty of truth is the simplest of us can do it. Why I rely on it rather than the wilyness needed in power relationships, like this one that saw the people out of it for 36 years. Honesty is still a factor.

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