GUEST BLOG: Bryan Bruce – We’ll Need Some Pushbacks!

The Chase For Democracy


There is a game show on TV ONE called The Chase which I’m sure many of you will have seen. When the contestants get a score that is just below 20 and it might not be enough to beat The Chaser, the cry is often “We’ll need some pushbacks” to set the Chaser back a step every time they get an answer wrong.

What we need to learn is to pushback against some of the things Luxon’s  Coalition Government is getting wrong through protests and select committee hearings.

A good example is the pushback on David Seymour’s attack on the School Lunches programme. Public reaction made him back track – at least enough to make sure it wasn’t completely abandoned.

Pushing back on the Governments treatment of people with disabilities has helped a bit.

Pushing back on their failed promise to fund 13 new Cancer drugs is showing signs it will work.

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Pushing back of Seymour’s Treaty Principles Bill is unifying Māori who are pushing back with protests that I’m hoping will prove effective in persuading Luxon not to support it.

I say “hoping” because Luxon is proving to be such a weak leader even his own party are worried he is being run by Seymour and Peters. Polls show his popularity has plummeted so quickly after becoming Prime Minister that this is starting to look like a one term government.So it’s a good time to pushback on ACT and NZ First more extreme policies.

Next weekend I will be filming with people who are pushing back on mining in the Coromandel and the Fast-Track legislation which would give unbridled power to three ministers Shane Jones, Chris Bishop, and Simeon Brown.

There’s a March For Nature and Against The Fast Track Legislation planned for this coming Saturday June 8thin Auckland’s Aotea Square starting at 1pm.

I’m not sure what is planned for the rest of the country but if you are planning to pushback please let me know when and where.

We need more pushbacks.

The prize we are chasing is our democracy.

Kia kaha.


Bryan Bruce is one of New Zealand’s most important and respected documentary makers. His work is available on


  1. “Pushing back of Seymour’s Treaty Principles Bill is unifying Māori who are pushing back with protests that I’m hoping will prove effective in persuading Luxon not to support it.”

    Given that in some circles Maori are about as popular as a turd in punchbowl – at least compared to schoolkids, people with disabilities, and cancer patients – I would be a little surprised if anything came of pushback on that. Pleased but just a little surprised. There is a substantial proportion of people in this country who simply want to get rid of the Treaty. Not just knuckle draggers either. I was once talking to a well-respected New Zealand scientist, who when I said we couldn’t do something because of the treaty just said – “Well, why can’t we just get rid of it?” A great scientist but not a great political thinker.

    • gs, well Maori ain’t gonna let that happen MF, and did you actually do any real research into our country’s history and why pakeha exist in this country as a homogenous group? We can’t let you & your fake scientist meme destroy our country founding document now can we!!

      • What the fuck you talking about? Are you associating me with this people you stupid prick? I wouldn’t normally call you a stupid prick but you seem to be calling me a mother fucker, and you seem to have completely misunderstood what I was driving at. Try improving your reading comprehension.

      • You love it, it’s everything you wanted and Labour is safe back in opposition where they can perform at their best.

      • At least the police are reacting now not just letting the gangs take over the roads like they did Opotaki last year.
        The police have the job now of taking back the roads after 6 years of kindness .They should be commended for their efforts.

        • I’ll need a map to find this new town you mention, but what are you on about? There are about 1000 gang members gathering for a funeral in the Hawkes Bay now. They are being respectful apparently? The police are throwing serious resources at this latest one, helicopter etc. You think that’s taking something back? It hardly sounds like 1000 gang members are quaking in their boots.

        • Boy racers took over some streets in Levin just yesterday. If you want to throw more people into jail then good luck to you. It cost about $200000 to keep a prisoner in jail for a year, yet the government can’t even fund the cancer drugs in their first budget, that they promised during the election. They can’t spend the money on you, if you need an unfunded cancer drug, but get sentenced to jail and they are happy to spend money on that. They should be commended for their efforts.

      • If Levin can find a way to capitalise on the boy racers instead of ‘driving’ them away, they will give a lift to the economics of the place! How, that’s the rub. Well Monaco! Levin Grand Prix?
        The Monaco Grand Prix is a Formula One motor racing event held annually on the Circuit de Monaco, in late May or early June. Wikipedia

        The Isle of Man does it. Birds do it, bees do it, even educated fleas do it, Let’s do it! Show some oomph and gumption Levin, be the first town in the burg to embrace the noisy s…ts. They love motors, what’s new. We have to do different than before now because all our gains from the past are being wiped away either by callous, voracious, money-oriented creatures (including some from our families, neighbours),

        Listen to the musical Chess. It reflects real life in its perspicacious writing and music. It starts off with the citizens of Merano singing about how they will get business from holding the challenge there. And then goes on to the various conflicting human relationships. or the ubiquitous climate change (everywhere you go).

  2. Surely it’s not a matter of giving unbridled power to Jones, Brown, and Bishop, the tobacco boy from damp Naenae College, Lower Hutt, but of giving unbridled power to any three of them at all.

    Few in government have a working knowledge of the issues likely to be fast tracked, and they need the expertise of they who do.The budget’s appalling failure to provide funding for science and research will almost certainly drive some talented persons offshore and adds another sinister dimension to this assault upon democracy.

  3. ” We need more pushbacks. ”

    Bryan the Hobbits have put the neo liberal phone off the hook or switched off their mobile.

    Its all immaterial.

    Despite how bad it is now only Maori acting for Maori and the environmental groups are protesting and it won’t make a damn bit of difference.

    Not one of these protests have the destruction and attack on working people and many others as their main focus and the corruption that has become just a ” meh ” moment or acknowledgement of how far our country has slipped into the abyss under this unregulated capitalist plutocracy we call an economy that controls every damn one of us and our own right to a future that does not include begging at a foodbank or working three jobs just to afford the rent or if you are subservient to a bank your home mortgage with crippling interest rates and other hardship like being able to afford to feed yourself.

    We have accepted the free market as our god and executioner regardless of where we place our vote ( if you can see the point ) every three years just to be lied to and misled while the top echelons prevail.

    No current serf in Aotearoa New Zealand will pushback and the powerful who control our once great shire have us right where they have subtly worked to place us.

    Out of harms way!

  4. It’s an idea BB. We are quick to sit on ideas with scorn. They will never work and if we try we can make sure they won’t work and be cock-a-hoop because we forecast failure! That’sNZs idea of a winning plan. There are interesting analyses of how useful failures are to learning minds but we have stopped that sort of malarkey.

    Actually the way we should view things is that of a charade, theatre. The pollies put on a performance every three years and are full of pretence and pretension. And we watch like simples turning out for a mummer’s or guiser’s show.

    But it is a task for the sustainers amongst us to trap what was good and see if it can be grown back. So push-back would be good. But we have tried protesting against losing our sovereignty to international wealth cabals and so on and the result has been a different play from the PTB and their well-paid functionaries.

    • ” we need to push the fuckers out the door ASAP ”

      Great sentiment Gordon but there is only probably around twenty or thirty members on this site that consider what is happening to everyone out here is worth the effort getting upset at the injustice of what is happening ..the rest don’t give a shit and that’s why it won’t change.

      And the plutocracy have made sure it doesn’t.


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