Looking Forward To 2022


LET’S PLAY A GAME. Let’s pretend we’re half-way through 2022. Covid-19 isn’t exactly a memory, people still get it, but hardly anyone ends up in hospital and almost nobody dies. So politics has returned to all the normal settings. The Government is no longer being judged on how well it kept us all safe from Covid. Now it’s all about what it’s doing; how well it’s doing it; and whether it should be doing it at all.

Now, those of us with good memories, will recall that this is exactly where the Labour-NZ First-Green Government was at in the weeks before the global pandemic swept politics-as-usual from the stage. Back when Simon Bridges was leading National, and National was leading Labour in the polls. Back when Jacinda Ardern had Winston Peters to protect her and Labour from their worst woke instincts. Back when, Winston’s presence notwithstanding, things weren’t looking so good for the Left.

Okay, so that’s where we are in 2022. Living in a New Zealand where all the usual rules of politics once again apply. And, guess what? Jacinda’s government, once again, isn’t doing very well – not very well at all.

What is the cause of the Government’s worrying slide in the polls? Most people would agree that it is Nanaia Mahuta’s “Three Waters” programme. With the local government elections fast approaching, a nationwide political movement is taking shape dedicated to rolling back what is now being quite openly presented as a Māori power grab for the nation’s water. Tickets are being organised all over the country of candidates pledged to resist the state’s confiscation of municipally owned water resources and infrastructure. Already ratepayer groups are pledging to engage in civil disobedience to prevent the Three Waters programme going ahead.

Why haven’t Jacinda and her colleagues simply cancelled the programme and gone back to the drawing-board? The answer lies in the disproportionate death-toll of Māori Covid victims. When the Delta outbreak turned deadly in the last few weeks of 2021, it was in unvaccinated Māori communities that it really went to work.

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The anguish and anger of Māori is easily imagined, and almost all of it was directed at the Labour Party. It was, after all, Labour which had presented itself as the Māori people’s best friend back in 2017. And it was Jacinda Ardern who went to Waitangi in 2018 and asked Māori to hold her and her Government accountable for their actions. In vain did reasonable people point out that it was Covid-19 that had killed Māori – not Labour. But, after the trauma of 2021, Māori weren’t in a very reasonable frame of mind.

So, the Labour leadership felt obliged to back their own Māori caucus’s agenda without reservation. Anticipating the massive resistance Nanaia’s Three Waters programme was bound to inspire, they steeled themselves for the inevitable racist backlash and told them to press on regardless – the Government had their back.

This was why Labour had forced through the Three Waters reforms, legislating right over the top of an overwhelming majority of local authorities’ objections. And why, faced with the prospect of a clean right-wing sweep through the nation’s district, city and regional councils, the Government was seriously considering using its Covid Emergency Powers to postpone the local government elections for at least another year.

To say this idea was going down like a cup of cold sick with a majority of the electorate was to understate the position considerably. Following his generous settlement with Harry Tam, Winston Peters was now roaring back into electoral contention on the back of the racist beast unleashed by the Three Waters reforms. The votes that weren’t surging towards NZ First were being gratefully received by National and Act. Small wonder Labour was shedding support.

Although, not that much support. Thanks to the sterling efforts of the mainstream news media in explaining/justifying Mahuta’s scheme, a crucial chunk of the Pakeha population was refusing to jump on the anti-Three Waters bandwagon. Educated voters were sticking with Labour, even as principled conservatives, disgusted by the overtly racist narrative of the right-wing parties, were gritting their teeth and shifting their support to the Left.

Labour was looking at the fast-growing support for the Māori Party, calculating that the Greens would remain above the 5 percent threshold, and factoring-in the likely consequences of making it easier for Māori voters to switch from the General to the Māori Roll – coupled with lowering of the voting age to sixteen. With the election still a year away, there just might be a narrow – very narrow – pathway to power.

Covid or no Covid, in this political game, there was still everything to play for.



  1. The three waters debacle is the focus point re all things Maori at this point in time (overshadowed somewhat in the low Maori vaccination rates). It is but the tip of the iceberg in growing anti Maori resentment within the 85%.

    Many of the 85% consider themselves as ” People of the Land” having in some cases over 10 generations or more bonded with this land. In their minds they have what Maori call “Tangata Whenua” status.

    The denial of the status “People of the land” for the 85%, by Maori will be the major reason Maori self determination (as proposed in the He Poupou report) will never be voted for.

    Now Labour are very undemocratic in enacting parts of the He Poupou report (health and water but two examples) however the status of Maori will never reach the 50/50 split governance they seek. It would simply trample over the “one person = one vote” so enshrined in democracy.

    The He Popou report is a major disaster for Maori as it fails to even make a mention of how the 85% fit in the picture painted. They can’t, so the whole movement to Maori self representation in equal partnership with the 85% (but still availing the taxes paid by the 85%) is never going to fly.

    We should be having discussions about how the whole of New Zealand can be bettered. What we are currently overfed with is everything for Maori being bettered with no regard to how the 85% is fairing.

    I can hear the engines revving. “what about the treaty?, what about colonisation (conquered)?” Yes there are issues but unless you carry the 85% along with the process, they will be empty vessels making a lot of noise. We are all victims in New Zealand, just currently some victims are “more equal than others.”

    • People of the land is a literal meaning but Tangata whenua more closely resembles the word indigenous and does not deny where certain people came from.

      • Sam, just as an FYI, I would have to say that if I was part of the Maori leadership, I would be pushing to change that “People of the Land” understanding, at least in terms of interpretation.

        I have talked to many people who feel as I do (Many of them first generation NZers from multiple countries) who feel an overwhelming spiritual connection to this land. I have always felt it. The first time I heard that only Maori were ‘People of the Land, it really upset me, I actually cried. I thought, This is who I am, this is my heart, how can they say this?

        Now today for the first time thanks to you, I understand it as maybe it was intended. But its worth noting, that through the media and even Maori themselves, many Tau Iwi have absorbed this faulty understanding of what it means.

        • In maoridome, it’s up to the children of to give there name and Whakapapa, the mana.

          Academics smarter than both you and I will very likely bitch about my interpretations of Maori, and they regularly do but that’s what it is and that’s that’s.

          I’m proud of where I came from and how I got here and so should you.

      • The “people of the land”, “Blood and Soil” is the ethno nationalist call. We know where that leads, or do we?

          • Read some history Sam, “Blood and Soil” (Blut und Boden) came from the Nazis.
            Read this (from Wik) and explain to me how this isn’t what is being proposed by our ethno-nationalists:
            “The central political tenet of ethnic nationalism is that ethnic groups are entitled to self-determination. The outcome of this right to self-determination may vary, from calls for self-regulated administrative bodies within an already-established society, to an autonomous entity separate from that society, to a sovereign state removed from that society.
            Ethnic nationalism bases membership of the nation on descent or heredity, often articulated in terms of common blood or kinship, rather than on political membership. Hence, nation-states with strong traditions of ethnic nationalism tend to define nationality or citizenship by jus sanguinis (the law of blood, descent from a person of that nationality), and countries with strong traditions of civic nationalism tend to define nationality or citizenship by jus soli (the law of soil, birth within the nation state). Ethnic nationalism is, therefore, seen as exclusive, while civic nationalism tends to be inclusive. Rather than allegiance to common civic ideals and cultural traditions, then, ethnic nationalism tends to emphasise narratives of common descent.

    • FYI Gerrit.

      The name of the controversial report on giving effect to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples is He Puapua – meaning “a break in the wave”. It is an important document and deserves to be spelled correctly.

      • My bad, Apologies.

        Question is who is it important to?

        The 85% not mentioned within the report, or the 15% who are worth mentioning?

    • To quote the great historian Micheal King in his book Being Pakeha Now “For me then to be Pakeha…it is not to be alien or a stranger in my own country. It is to be a non-Maori New Zealander who is aware of and proud of my antecedents, but who identifies as intimately with this land and intensively and as strongly as anybody Maori. It is to be…another kind of indigenous New Zealander”. Micheal was one of our greatest historians and did more than anyone to promote pakeha understanding of Maori history – but he had no time for those who sought to “climb on the shoulders of the past to sneer at and abuse others in the present”. Nobody should own the water in this country – or we all should.

      • Water is a great asset that is under huge pressures to remain safe and secure and that will cost at least one hundred billion dollars so we all have to pay.

  2. 120 Billion to 185 Billion is required over the next 30-40 years to meet the drinking water and the wastewater standards.
    Local Government boomers have been grossly negligent on water and waste over many years. Much of the infrastructure is run down and unfit for purpose.
    Something has to change. Or maybe we could just leave it to the next generation ay boy.

    • Yes indeed, some councils lack the rates revenue and expertise to sort out their waste water issues.
      So provide them with funds and expertise – I’m not sure how handing the power of veto on all public works to an unelected tribal elite will help in this regard.

      • Most councils around the country are riddled with corruption and cannot be trusted as far as you can kick them.
        Tauranga, Hamilton, Hastings and Christchurch to name just a few recent examples. There are many others.
        And look at the Havelock North fiasco as just one of the many examples of incompetent poor management by vested interests who seem to inveigle their way into council positions.
        And while the government is sorting that mess out they should also bring back the MED and the Ministry Of Works.

    • While there may be problems in some areas (Wellington’s waste water for example) about 150 thousand million is such an extraordinary amount of money it beggars belief. Where did that figure come from?
      There are already statutory requirements regarding water, and a process to ensure compliance, so it’s difficult to see amalgamation and centralisation being some sort of cure-all answer to the problems, such as they are. Super city anyone?
      So what is the real motivation? Why the childish and insulting propaganda program? Why the need for Maori ownership and control?
      The whole thing reeks.

  3. Nice, comforting dreaming, but it veered into complete fantasy at this point:

    “Thanks to the sterling efforts of the mainstream news media in explaining/justifying Mahuta’s scheme, a crucial chunk of the Pakeha population was refusing to jump on the anti-Three Waters bandwagon. Educated voters were sticking with Labour, even as principled conservatives, disgusted by the overtly racist narrative of the right-wing parties, were gritting their teeth and shifting their support to the Left.”

    BTW, Ardern has never stuck firm to any unpopular policy. She has stuck firmly to the middle of public opinion.

  4. Sounds like a typical US-style election in an MMP environment complete with neverSeymours. LOL. This is highlighting what i’ve said for a long time. This government has gas-lighted the consensus politics that have guided NZ since WW2 – the result will be partisan politics on par with the US. The hatred out there is real.

    Bomber becomes NZ’s equivalent of Bill Maher – canary in the coalmine against Wokeborg.

    Thankfully you’ve removed yourself from your covid stupor over the past couple of posts.

  5. Chris, I like your crystal ball because there are certainly elements of truth in it.

    I would add: Exiting the lockdowns, many will be left with a bitter taste in their mouths. Jobs lost. Businesses failed. Relatives dead because of a lack of medical staff and facilities. The masses will be in a mood for revolt I reckon.

  6. I like this ‘lotto’ combo.
    Act-Labour and maybe the gweens just for a bit of neoliberal wrecking ball fun, 3.0!

  7. Awareness dear boy, awareness.
    Awareness leads to enlightenment and in these times of great stress and basic, good old fashioned danger we’re becoming ‘aware’ and ‘enlightened’, whether we like it or not.
    Sure, there will be fools who fail to comprehend the differences between enjoying new awarenesses leading to enlightenment and slugging with with the same-old but if we’re patient they’ll fall off the evolutionary train they’re certain to lose their grip of.
    National are awful. Lets be honest. There’s nothing about national that’s beguiling and charming, witty or erudite. Judith collins is an awake nightmare and her cabinet is a freak show looking for a destitute circus desperate to hire any act.
    Writing of ACT. ACT is the dead skin worn by roger douglas. Peel back that idiot seymour and in there, amongst the gruesome guts and bones, there…? See? Slithering about like a stunted Golem, there’s wee roger the dodger. All you old Blue Rinses with your trust funds cheering on roger and davy? Better pop the kettle on Dears because here comes the parasitic vampires with the smell of your money and moth balls in their ever sniffing nostrils.
    The tremendous thing about c-19 and it’s variant is to show what’s truly valuable and vital and what’s not. I’m personally beyond joyous to see the banks suffer. All this howling kerfuffleising as business shrinks like the cold diddle drooping of foreign banking… And we’re realising that life’s not that bad without the fuckers after all.
    I see beautiful things ahead for all of us once we bury the dead, rotting carcass of capitalism.

  8. How is it racist to be against a blatant asset grab by the Government? Assets paid for by generations of hard working NZ’ers

      • @ SAM. I see your point. Maori work as hard as anyone else and yet they, Maori, are disproportionally represented as the homeless living on the streets or locked up in prison.
        Somethings not right.
        It’s my observation that AO/NZ’s societal infrastructure is an anomaly.
        More than one or two AO/NZ’ers wants AO/NZ to be, and remain, an international and urbane society where everything’s pink, polite and correct. Refer Auckland as a prime example. Nice White leafy suburbs, thin blond trophy brides wearing large round sunglasses while driving Range Rovers that’ll never see a speck of mud.
        Well, money baby. Money.
        And since it’s inarguably all about The Money? Then who’s money is it? Who, in AO/NZ, makes the stuff and things that’s exported so that we may receive that money into our financial infrastructures to be distributed about so that we may enjoy a reasonable standard of living. ( I think we AO/NZ’ers had the third highest standard of living in the world in the early 1970’s, was it? )
        Farmers. That’s the answer. And it’s an answer that repels arguments like water off a ducks arse hole.
        It’s therefore in the interests of those few who suck up our agrarian financial resources then secret that money away to create their pink and clean urban fiefdoms’ to make sure our society remains divided and in a state of aggrieved flux lest we figure the bastards out.
        Whether it’s abortion issues, LGBTQ, women versus men versus what ever They can dredge up, versus teenage sex/voting/driving versus cat people versus dog people versus Pink Floyd versus Fat Freddy’s Drop and lets not forget good ol’ fashioned racism.
        Divide to concur.
        @ Sam. Maori and non Maori are being needled by our users and abusers and the last fucking they’d want is for Maori and non Maori to gather together in unity.
        When our users and abusers see Maori and non Maori toe to toe each other they’re off to buy a new BMW with renewed confidence.

        • New Zealand has 2 great assets, Water and Superannuation and National people want to scree up both. But if we can just hold our nerve and keep doing what we are good and true as at doing and maintain super contributions, we will pull out of this what ever, together. All off us. And if we are to pull out of this, we will all do it with our heads held high.

    • It’s pretty obvious that the “racist” insult is just a way of shutting people up and stop them from asking legitimate questions. For example, objecting to racial separate voting rights is, apparently, racist. The tantrums from the tans activists and their “transphobic” nonsense is the same thing.
      It takes some courage but best just to treat such insults with the contempt they deserve and not be cowed into silence.

      • It’s totally rediculous to describe representations of New Zealand had it not been for European settlement as racist.

        If you go to Spain you’re going to hear Spanish.

        Go to France you’ll hear french.

        Go to Aotearoa, youre going to hear te Reo.

        If all you want to hear is England, then fuck off to England.

        • Great comment Sam. We are not the English in Europe. We are Kiwis in the Pacific. I hope Te Reo is learned by as many people as possible, not to take over as the main language, but it is pretty cool to open with a Maori greeting. I’m gonna learn some.

  9. Here we go….
    Today’s RNZ.
    Isn’t it funny?? What, who, why, how..!?
    Is there a factory somewhere in AO/NZ which manufactures tourists to then export to where tourist revenue’s needed?? Has there been a leap in the need for views of hills and mountains?
    How can our economy ‘surge’ when we all know it’s domestic real estate sales and Ponsonby lawyers who earn our export revenue. Thank God for Remuera banksters like jonky and others for their tireless work exporting their wank and bullshit to those who need such vital things. And stuff.
    “Govt books: 2020 / 2021 financial statements show deficit of $4.6 billion”
    “Robertson said government measures had protected the economy, which continued to show strength and resilience.”
    How? By ensuring the parasites who syphon off farmer money into dodgy bankster infrastructures using quantitative easing do less of it?
    ” Hey! Oi ! Boys? Less of it would ya? Fuckin’ dragging down the economy … someone will notice.”
    Well, fuckers! Someone did.

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