2021 started with Trump trying to overthrow American democracy and got progressively worse.
The explosion of hate via Facebook algorithms turned NZ politics into a cesspit of madness while the woke cancelled anything they were triggered by, which extended all the way to poor old Dave Dobbyn!
Politically it was carnage, there were winners and there were so many losers.
Political Winners 2021:
The Venn diagram of people losing their shit at Jacinda’s wedding, those who call her ‘Cindy’, those who scream any time Neve is mentioned and Arseholes is a perfect circle. Sure, we had a Leader with an unprecedented MMP majority that ignored housing, poverty, inequality, prison rehabilitation, housing, meaningful mental health policy, meaningful climate change policy and housing again (while pushing for that fucking stupid bike bridge), but we let her off the hook for failing to address any of those issues because a once in a century pandemic hit. Will we be as forgiving when Omicron hits? Jacinda’s neokindness is starting to collapse but if she keeps us safe see deserves a gratitude vote again in 2023.
Maori Labour Caucus
The very excellent Graham Adams at the Democracy Project fears the Māori Labour Caucus has too much power and is pushing pro-Māori agendas through that the majority of the electorate will balk at.
This is true in that the Māori Labour Caucus are the most powerful faction inside the Labour Party and they are ferociously good negotiators.
I believe however as we enter the second year of the second term that the Māori Caucus must step up to force Jacinda to live up to her promise of transformative politics.
The left love Michael Joseph Savage. Every Labour MP who wishes to push their left wing credentials have photos of him hanging in every electorate office and Minister’s room.
Savage is lauded as the creator of the welfare state in the wake of the Great Depression.
He was swamped when he went into public as NZers gushed over how he had saved them all.
The most hilarious truth, provided by insights from John A Lee who served in Savage’s Cabinet paints a very different picture from the mythology the left have given Savage .
The truth is that Savage was incredibly centrist and not a radical at all. Backed up by the neoliberal Walter Nash and conservative manipulator Peter Fraser, Savage did all he could to stop transformative change, it was actually Savage’s Caucus who forced his hand repeatedly to be transformative.
The exact same dynamics are at play inside Jacinda’s Labour Government.
When there is a crisis, the Prime Minister shines, but when it comes to domestic policy, she is super cautious to the point of being timid.
The reality is there won’t be transformative change unless the Caucus demands it.
Time for Māori Labour Caucus to fight for poverty, housing & climate change the way they’ve fought for 3 waters.
Despite all the alienating middle class identity politics and near invisibility this year, the Greens have risen recently in the polls as Labour Left walk away from Jacinda’s NeoKindness. This has created a unique political space for the Greens. The more they shut up and allow Labour to fail on a wide range of social issues, the more Labour Left will vote for the Greens. If the Greens can just shut the fuck up for the next 2 years and not remind voters of how extreme their woke cult dogma is, we could finally get a Green-Labour Government!
While the mask slips occasionally to reveal the far right sociopath that ACT policy truly represents (his claim that stat holidays like Christmas are evidence of a fascist state and his vandalism of Maori public health Covid programs), his deadpan wit and intellectual curiosity has gained him enormous fans amongst angry white urban males 18-49. Next years Hate Speech legislation will be a political killing field for ACT, expect him to lift ACT within striking distance of National over that one issue alone.
Neale Jones & corporate lobbyists
After The Standard’s feverish defense of corporate lobbyists and attack on public academics like Dr Bryce Edwards, those who have commercial interests in Government policy will always have Wellington apologists to help them grandstand.
The Christian Lex Luthor took over the National Party with all the shallow spin of a BMW product launch. He is the expensive time share holiday plan in the Maldives that you can never afford but endlessly aspire to. He is a Handmaid’s Tale level anti-abortionist who has already harvested all the wasted sub 5% Christian vote, so he’s reached his electoral ceiling already.
This is as good as he gets.
His grace, his humour and his leadership in keeping Northland safe with righteous border checkpoints is a reminder of what a great politician and true man of the people Hone always was and is. His ability to make Pākehā who self identify as European spit flecked in rage is a gift.
The final watered down meaningless bullshit that has been agreed to is a shocking nothing as the entire species faces an unprecedented omnicide from catastrophic global warming.
Vacant promises that aren’t enforceable is only a win to the oil industry.
We will hit 2.7°C with current policies, 2.4°C if all Governments met the 2030 targets.
That is an abysmal failure of collective will and represents the longest suicide letter in human history.
It’s not James Shaws’s fault that the rest of the planet is still only paying lip service to the adaptation required to mitigate against the enormous threat global warming poses, so it would be unfair to blame him but the sophistry of NZs position to do the least possible while pretending we are manifesting something meaningful feels like James taking our cow to market and returning with 3 magic beans.
We are all like, ‘James, where’s the cow’, and James excitedly tells us he’s got these 3 magic beans and we all punch James.
COP26 has been a failure, if this was our last chance, then we have failed. The political spectrum can’t operate when the wealthy polluters own the capitalist system exacerbating the problem.
The Prison population is dropping, fewer prisoners are in rehabilitation, more are committing violence in prison and recidivism rates are still above 50%.
The only trick Labour adopted when they took over was existing legislation National had simply ignored that allowed low level prisoners to serve their sentences at home under home detention rules.
The problem was under National, they didn’t bother actively helping prisoners fill in the paperwork to apply for it. The first thing Labour did was force Corrections to help the prisoners fill in the paperwork, and that is the only reason the prison muster fell.
It’s still the same old underfunded violent and corrupt prison system it always was with the same counterproductive policies.
Prisoners still have to admit guilt before they can access rehabilitation, which leads t fewer accessing it.
The prison environment is still too toxic to heal.
We are spending $1.7b on a prison system that is producing men more damaged than when they went in.
Sadly there are no votes in healing damaged men, only punishing them.
Right after the referendum which showed almost a majority demanding cannabis law reform, Little killed off any cannabis reform and landed us instead with bullshit medicinal cannabis rules that only serve a billionaire while crushing the local medicinal cannabis industry.
Patients seeking medicinal cannabis now ARE WORSE OFF after Labour than before it!
Minister Little has the audacity to blame the industry which either suggests Andrew is either lying or grossly misinformed!
I am free anytime to explain to the Minister why he is wrong.
Labour have inadvertently set the medicinal cannabis industry up the way they have set the super market duopoly up. Labour have allowed the big pharma segment of the NZ market to write rules that exclude the smaller players which has led directly to the impasse we have now.
A framework that only the big pharma segment can pass through while fucking over medicinal cannabis patients as well as the wider industry.
Labour deserve nothing but contempt for their medicinal cannabis failure and if the Greens had any strategic brain they would make a legal market part of their agreement to form a government in 2023.
Despite most Kiwis supporting larger welfare payments, we get pittance from Labour instead…
The Greens and ACT have both condemned the Government’s increase to welfare payments – but for very different reasons.
July 1 marks the day a raft of social development initiatives announced during Budget 2021 will come into effect, including a $20 increase to main benefits per week – a change that’ll impact hundreds of thousands of Kiwis on the dole.
So sure, cheer about that 1.4% like it means something but don’t pretend it actually does.
I’m getting a tad sick to death of listening to Jacinda and other apologists from this Government tell us with straight faces that lifting 30 000 kids out of poverty is somehow a meaningful response to the poverty crisis.
It is not.
Look, even if, and I mean IF, they actually do lift 30 000 kids out of poverty (and I say IF because we saw how their promises of jobs from the Provincial Growth Fund were a joke) so even IF they lift 30 000 kids out of poverty, that still leaves a staggering 190,000 children in poverty!!!
You can’t boast about saving 30 000 kids while leaving 190 000 behind and still ask for a pat on the back!
This isn’t leadership, it’s capitulation.
If only we could put in as much effort lifting children out of poverty as we do on middle class tax breaks for electric cars, a billion dollar bike lane and hate speech legislation.
We hate beneficiaries so much that a crumb is sold as a mountain.
Why aren’t we talking about the benefits of keeping the borders closed?
- No hyper tourism
- Near full employment
- Higher wages
- Less migrant exploitation
Imagine how much worse the housing crisis would be with pre-Covid tourism?
If we accept that Covid will require annual injections, that mutations will continue to threaten and acknowledge our supply chains will be marred by lockdowns in poorer countries over time by the virus – then why are we hurrying to open the borders?
Add to this the increase in climate extremes that will drive migration, shouldn’t we be keeping the borders shut rather than open?
Many of the free market neoliberal cows are being slaughtered, why try and resurrect them?
The first baby steps of this new Government was to endorse a racist drug law, rule out a wealth tax, rule out lifting benefits before Christmas and refuse to mandate 10 sick days now.
Labour have bewilderingly however locked us into a vast debt trap to fund trickle down economics by printing billions and instead of loaning it to the Government to rebuild our infrastructure, poorly funded public services and refund our welfare state, Labour have green lighted it going to corporate banks to fuel property speculators in the hope the newly inflated paper wealthy spend that false sense of prosperity in the real economy to help the little guy.
Once again Labour use free market mechanics to try and fix a housing market wrecked by neoliberalism. KiwiBuild has become KiwiSpeculate!
If only Labour’s NeoKindness could help beneficiaries, renters, prisoners, the working class, kids in poverty, first time home owners & cannabis users the way it helps property speculators.
In the end, this cavalcade of political circus freaks managed to self mutilate more than your average Incel at a feminist conference, they managed to be Apocalypse Now but with less helicopters and more napalm.
The NZ diaspora
The MIQ over subscription by tens of thousands hints at the incandescent rage many of our diaspora feel trying to get back into their legal home country.
There is no way their torture won’t have political ramifications.
Last election Greens did poorly in their usually high overseas support vote because Ardern’s global stardom eclipsed the Greens, this election however the frustration is directly at Jacinda’s policies so I think the Greens will take that vote back and then some.
The Greens are so painfully precious of others pain that global citizens not able to return home is made even more pertinent because the middle class Greens also like to travel, so their fierce self interested rhetoric will find electoral gold amongst fiercely self interested kiwis caught outside a predictable lockout due to Covid.
Like isn’t it a tad on the nose to bitch about getting caught out of the country during an 18months pandemic? I mean, what about traveling during a pandemic seemed like a good idea to you?
Be that as it may, our diaspora are furious and if the Green Party rhetoric is too moderate for their anger, ACTs throw-open-the-borders-and-let-the-free-market-decide-death policy is for you.
ACTs policy has the whiff of judgmental vengeance to it that is the perfect cocktail of payback people locked out of their own home want to inflict on those refusing to open the door.
My guess is that our diaspora are far more motivated to vote in 2023 than we have ever considered and their anger at being locked out will be sharp.
I think the Greens & ACT will reap a mighty harvest from their anger and fear.
The sudden radicalization within NZ politics that TDB has been pointing out for some time has exploded across the spectrum and is now a mainstream talking point.
The fact that a hard right Party like ACT are currently on 17% is the 10000 pound albino gorilla in the room which the woke won’t mention for fear of alienating an overweight pigment challenged mammal.
ACTs policies are so fucking far right that they endlessly fly in circles.
Let’s remind ourselves of ACTs more crazy shit…
- Cut and freeze the Minimum wage
- Interest back on all student loans
- No Kiwsaver subsidy
- Cancel winter energy payment
- Dump all climate crisis legislation
- no more best start payments for families with new borns
- cut welfare payments
- no tax credits for research and development
- cuts to working for families
- $7b a year cut in public services
- Abolish Maori seats
- Abolish Human Rights Commission
…THAT is getting 17%!
Sweet Zombie Jesus.
ACTs stratospheric rise in the polls started – LIKE I FUCKING WARNED IT WOULD – when the bloody woke identity politics activists went on their deplatforming rampage and tried to strangle free speech off.
In the end, David invited a feminist conference onto Parliament grounds because Masey Uni in Wellington deplatformed it!
The woke ended up making David a free speech hero FFS!
I warned the woke at the time that all they were doing was giving ACT the ammunition ACT would later use against us, and that picking a free speech fight with Seymour could awaken a dormant electoral fault line that will bite us in the arse.
Once ACT started registering 2MPs, it became a viable political vehicle for the Gun festishists and David’s ongoing performance has made him the de facto Leader of the Opposition.
As National have floundered, ACT have looked stronger and people’s gut political values have done the rest.
Thanks to social media algorithms of hate we are locked into echo chambers that are endlessly radicalizing.
Almost every single splinter group has become radicalized by the 90% double vaccination threshold.
- Angry Double vaxxed Good Citizens in Auckland & Good Buggers in South Island – They have done what they were asked, they have sacrificed and now they want their lives back. Being told they can’t because morons don’t want to be vaccinated is going down about as well as a cup of cold sick. You can’t get angry at these people and painting their frustration out as racist will hurt the Left at the election. The unfairness of continuing to lose your liberty under de facto house arrest because Liz Gunn thinks vaccinations are raping Gaia makes this group ripe for radicalisation.
- Small Business – These are people who for the first time in their lives feel economically vulnerable. They have haemorrhaged cash because of the lockdown and are on the verge of collapse. Economic hardship will see many blame Jacinda while seeing her only helping gangs. They are also ripe for radicalisation.
- The Woke – If you honestly think like the Maori Party that this is modern genocide, all violence is justified.
- Qanon Anti-vaxx lunatics – Will see the vaccination passports as a vast erosion of their civil rights and that measure will dangerously radicalize this fringe. If you honestly believe Jacinda is the same as Nazi Germany, any violence becomes permissible.
- Crystal Karens – These are the middle class new age conspiracy clique who will become culturally ostracised by the vaccine passports. If you believe like Liz Gunn does, that the vaccine is raping Gaia to the point that the Earth Mother Goddess is starting earthquakes then any violence is justified.
- Jesus is my vaccine fanatics – They will see Bishop Brian Tamaki’s prosecution as persecution and see end of days symbolism at every turn. The passport will be framed as the number of the beast. If Jacinda is the antiChrist then any violence is acceptable.
The speed of the radicalization has been driven by the desperation of Covid mixed with fear and rage.
This radicalisation has created an alternate reality on the right and we saw that in Wellington this week, but this alternate reality has also been a feature of the Left.
Post me too we had to believe anything anyone said on social media. We had to BELIEVE women. There was no longer objective truth, there was only subjective truth because due process is a heteronormative white cis male privilege and if someone questioned that they were a rapist.
The bewildering venom of the Trans debate and the demand that everyone else be forced to accept an identity subjectively defined by the individual and must never be challenged or you were canceled.
The demand for protection from micro aggressions and trigger free safe spaces.
The identity politics left is as radicalized and operating in their own dimension of reality as much as the feral right.
This deplatforming woke cancel culture is touched on in Bryce Edwards latest blog detailing the wokes attempt to cancel him!
TDB has been warning about this for sometime, that a culture backlash has been building against woke social engineering and that because Identity Politics and not class is the dominant philosophical schism within the Left, we are intellectually too weak to challenge the economic hegemony of neoliberalism and instead pick the low hanging fruit of identity.
This loss of class solidarity is causing the political spectrum to rapidly collapse.
I’m here to tell you that the radicalization in NZ politics is only going to get more extreme.
Who poses a bigger threat to Democracy? AntiVaxxers or The Spinoff & their woke commentariat?
While they all acknowledge that there was no actual violence at Parliament (at one point when the protestors knocked over the fence they politely put it back up again), they all focus on the language and hate speech that they believe is an immediate indicator of violence.
Now while I certainly believe there is a growing danger of a political assassination attempt against Jacinda and I have blogged about this, I see that as a lone lunatic from the ever growing number of radicalized individuals going troppo.
The woke will use this feral language as their prime justification for the hate speech law debate next year and argue the only way to stop this feral radicalization is to criminalize the speech.
The woke will re-enter the debate next year empowered with the self belief that if they just criminalize the speech of the right we can all be safe.
Their zeal and cult like identity politics dogma will enrage the right and the debate next year will become violent.
The solution of course is to penalize the social media networks themselves, not criminalize the toxic rantings of sad fuckwits.
Unfortunately there are no more adults left on the left to drive that as the solution.
In 1000 Years of Joys and Sorrows, Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei explores the dangers of cultural dogma…
Under the pressure to conform, everyone sank into an ideological swamp of “criticism” and “self-criticism.” My father repeatedly wrote self-critiques, and when controls on thought and expression rose to the level of threatening his very survival, he, like others, wrote an essay denouncing Wang Shiwei, the author of “Wild Lilies,” taking a public stand that went against his inner convictions.
Situations such as this occurred in Yan’an in the 1940s, occurred in China after 1949, and still occur in the present day. Ideological cleansing, I would note, exists not only under totalitarian regimes—it is also present, in a different form, in liberal Western democracies. Under the influence of politically correct extremism, individual thought and expression are too often curbed and too often replaced by empty political slogans.
…and Edward Snowden warns…
From the time I began studying China’s quest to intermediate the information space of its domestic internet, as part of my classified work at the NSA, I’d experience an unpleasant spinal tingle whenever I came across a new report indicating that the United States government, was, piece by piece, building out a similar technological and political infrastructure, using similar the justifications of countering terrorism, misinformation, sedition, and subjective “social harms.” I don’t want to be misunderstood as saying “East” and “West” were, or are, the same; rather, it is my belief that market forces, democratic decline, and a toxic obsession with “national security”—a euphemism for state supremacy—are drawing the US and China to meet in the middle: a common extreme. A consensus-challenging internet is perceived by both governments as a threat to central authority, and the pervasive surveillance and speech restrictions they’ve begun to mutually embrace will produce an authoritarian center of gravity that over time will compress every aspect of individual and national political differences until little distance remains.
If you thought getting people to take a vaccination was hard, wait till you tell them you will take away their free speech.
We ain’t seen nuthin yet.
Brace for impact.
Despite saving us from a deadly pandemic, Labour have done nothing on poverty, housing or the environment!
The crumbs Labour are embarrassingly offering up to beneficiaries don’t cover inflation. The billions Labour pumped into property speculators caused another obscene spike in housing prices and the less said about Labour’s crisis climate response the better.
Labour have offered us NeoKindness that tilts its head, nods compassionately and then screws you over if you are poor, but they saved us from Delta so deserve another grudging gratitude vote come 2023.
Voting for an ever pitiful Labour Party policy platform is like being a masochist trapped in an abusive relationship, but it’s still better than voting for the Greens, am I right?
I mean there’s a difference between being masochistic and having a suicidal death wish.
This is our last blog for 2021, next up, TDB 2022 predictions.
See you in the New Year.
Fuck off 2021.
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