Saturday, July 9, 2011

Election year race politics i New Zealand

We bloody can't help ourselves every fucking election year someone plays the race card. We don't actually do to badly in between elections. In the NZ Herald today we have this advert.

This is playing the race card at a level I have never seen before. I guess you would rank ACT as the political equivalent of the Republicans and this looks like a Tea Party play. Addressing Maori grievances is not pandering to Maori radicals. Hone Harawira is the face of Maori Radicals and to be blunt he isn't very scary at all. Middle class white New Zealand don't like him but I suspect that is because he, in an under pressure situation lashed out and called us white motherfuckers.  He had buggered off early from some conference in Brussels to take a visit to Paris with his wife and charged it up on parliamentary expenses.

Actually this is what happened 

"Following his return from Europe, in November 2009 Hawawira was asked to repay some travel costs after skipping a taxpayer-funded conference in Brussels to go sightseeing in Paris. "How many times in my lifetime am I going to get to Europe? So I thought, 'F*** it, I'm off. I'm off to Paris'," he said.[13] In a subsequent email exchange with Buddy Mikaere (a former director of the Waitangi Tribunal), who had criticised Harawira's actions, Harawira lashed out at white people, stating "Gee Buddy, do you believe that white man bull**** too do you? White motherf***ers have been raping our lands and ripping us off for centuries and all of a sudden you want me to play along with their puritanical bullshit....And, quite frankly, I don't give a shit what you or anyone else thinks about it. OK?". Harawira's email was seen as racist and heavily criticised by the media, other members of Parliament, and members of the public."

Hardly the crime of the century given that members of parliament from all political parties were caught out and asked to repay money including the former leader of the ACT party who took his girlfriend to London on the tax payer to attend his sons wedding. He certainly shouldn't have called us " white motherfuckers " but I don't think a statement made under intense pressure really should be held up as proof of racism.

An advert in major New Zealand NZ newspapers intended to appeal to the redneck vote from a supposedly responsible political party is in my opinion playing the race card and I don't give a fuck how you spin it, it is racist. OK who is behind this advert, Don Brash in fact Brash put out a Press release today  that sort of staggers me.

" ACT New Zealand leader Don Brash says he’s proud of the content of his Party’s advertisement published in this morning’s New Zealand Herald.
The advertisement is headed “Fed up with pandering to Maori radicals?” and itemises ways in which radical extremists have succeeded in imposing a separatist agenda on a long-suffering New Zealand.
“I have been warning of this creeping separatism for some time, as part of ACT’s One Law for All campaign,” says Dr Brash.
“Whether it’s the continued existence of the Maori seats when National promised to abolish them, unelected Maori boards at local government level, special status for Maori under the RMA, the proposed control by Maori over flora and fauna, the intention to make it compulsory for teachers to learn Te Reo, or any form of preferential treatment for Maori, it’s time this insidious cancer was diagnosed for what it is – a type of apartheid – and excised."

WTF. Warning about separatism ? Yeah well Brash in 2004 did make a speech as the then leader of the National Party kicking the shit out of Maori and went on to lose the election.

" On 30 April 2011 Don Brash became the leader of ACT New Zealand after his bid for its leadership was accepted and he was confirmed as leader by the ACT caucus and board"

That  is a bit of a problem for Brash, but the rest is even more laughable, for the record I think Maori seats should go as do many Maori but the Maori view is that Maori should decide when that is appropriate. I agree. I would go further and say they are essential at the moment for Maori New Zealand. As for the rest of it well nobody is seriously planning to make teachers  in New Zealand learn Maori ( Te Reo ) it was a suggestion and in my opinion not a stupid one Maori is an official New Zealand language.

“Separatist militants have been trying it on. The fact that the Dominion Post, unlike the Herald, was too cowardly to run our ad shows how well those militants have been succeeding, not only in advancing their agenda but in closing down any debate on it.
"It's time to tell them their game is up," Dr Brash concludes."

That is just fucking odd. The Dominion Post choose not accept advertising because of separatist militants ? I have spent my whole career on the commercial side of the media and I am betting that this advert broke a policy that the Dom. Post have, a halfway smart political operator would have asked what policy it broke I would have thought ?

To be fair the New Zealand right are struggling with this racist crap. I think ACT just dropped from about 1.5 % in the opinion polls to well nothing.

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