Nuclear next?

The Northland Age - - Opinion -

So, gen­er­ally, New Zealan­ders are happy that the govern­ment’s mass im­mi­gra­tion poli­cies have caused Auck­lan­ders to be charged 11 cents/litre ex­tra for fuel.

Those of us whose fore­bears mi­grated to Auck­land in the 19th and 20th cen­turies, and built Auck­land to be the won­der­ful city it was un­til the past cou­ple of decades, feel ag­grieved that we can no longer af­ford to live in Auck­land, and our grand­chil­dren will likely never be able to af­ford a home in Auck­land (please look at John Hoyt’s pic­ture of Auck­land when the first colonists ar­rived in 1841).

It is not the pub­lic’s fault that there is in­suf­fi­cient in­fra­struc­ture in place to meet the de­mands of such mas­sive mi­gra­tion, it is govern­ment pol­icy. Govern­ment should have planned the in­fra­struc­ture be­fore im­ple­ment­ing such poli­cies.

At a staff devel­op­ment con­fer­ence we were told in the 1990s that a World Bank rep­re­sen­ta­tive said that we had to have 10 mil­lion peo­ple in New Zealand. Now, hav­ing reached nearly five mil­lion, the Auck­land hous­ing sup­ply and road­ing in­fra­struc­ture has col­lapsed. What will be next? Prob­a­bly not telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, be­cause we can get that from the satel­lite.

Will it be wa­ter? Or will it be power? Will our nuclear-free coun­try have to build nuclear power sta­tions to pro­vide elec­tric­ity to us be­cause the ex­ist­ing dams and coal sta­tions will not be ad­e­quate?

Labour and NZ First promised to re­duce mi­gra­tion to a more man­age­able level, yet there seems to be no re­duc­tion in the num­bers ar­riv­ing in New Zealand.

We New Zealan­ders need to se­ri­ously con­sider where our power will be com­ing from, and say no to nuclear power now, whilst there is still an op­tion with our cur­rent pop­u­la­tion num­ber.

BEV­ER­LEY ALDRIDGE KATH­LEEN PAT­TIN­SON

Ota­matea Grey Power

fix­ated on can­ni­bal­ism, and the role they be­lieve in­fan­ti­cide played in Ma¯ ori pop­u­la­tion de­cline 1800-1900.

They re­veal their truly sick mo­ti­va­tions by openly call­ing this un­proven al­le­ga­tion “daugh­ter slaugh­ter”.

Muriel New­man is nonethe­less a per­sua­sive writer. Her of­ten well but se­lec­tively re­searched di­a­tribes are lib­er­ally sprin­kled with the word ‘democ­racy’, con­vey­ing the as­sump­tion that our West­min­ster Par­lia­men­tary va­ri­ety is the zenith of demo­cratic evo­lu­tion – the high­est form democ­racy can at­tain. To Pa¯keha¯ liv­ing in con­stant fear-ha­tred of Maori re­nais­sance and tino ran­gati­ratanga, this may be ex­actly the con­fir­ma­tion bias they need.

New­man, a doc­tor of math­e­mat­ics, should know about rep­re­sen­ta­tion and di­ver­sity in sta­tis­ti­cal pop­u­la­tions, and if she ap­plied her qual­i­fi­ca­tions to her po­lit­i­cal anal­y­sis, should rightly speak about di­verse rep­re­sen­ta­tive democ­racy or pro­por­tional rep­re­sen­ta­tion rather than a naive con­cept of democ­racy mean­ing sim­ply ma­jor­ity rule.

New­man firstly fails to men­tion the abysmal voter turnout in re­cent lo­cal body ref­er­en­dums on Maori wards — 37.21 per cent in Palmer­ston North and “around 40 per cent” in West­ern Bay of Plenty. This is a bla­tant fail­ure of democ­racy as we know it. Even a large ma­jor­ity of a small per­cent­age of el­i­gi­ble vot­ers is at best only in­dica­tive — 100 per cent of 40 per cent is 40 per cent.

Hu­man pop­u­la­tions are in­her­ently di­verse, seg­mented and/or di­vided along any num­ber of lines, gen­der, age, race or eth­nic­ity, cul­ture, her­itage, wealth or so­cial sta­tus be­ing merely the tip of a pop­u­la­tion’s in­ter­sec­tional ex­is­tence.

Ma­jor­ity rule might work in ho­mo­ge­neous pop­u­la­tions, if any­one can ac­tu­ally lo­cate one. The pop­u­la­tions of an­cient Greece and Rome, where our con­cept of democ­racy orig­i­nated, with their pa­tri­ar­chal so­cial classes, eth­nic en­claves, slav­ery and colonies, were hardly ho­mo­ge­neous, or all the same.

In Ro­man democ­racy, even if she was born a cit­i­zen, no woman could vote or hold po­lit­i­cal of­fice. New Zealand led democ­racy’s adap­ta­tion to in­clude women. Hence, to be­lieve democ­racy can evolve no fur­ther, or that Te Ao Ma¯ ori has not evolved since the Mus­ket Wars, is to deny rea­son, if not re­nounce thought al­to­gether. Math­e­mat­ics sup­pos­edly helps us think log­i­cally.

Ma­jor­ity rule can so eas­ily be­come tyranny of the ma­jor­ity, as Ma¯ ori, in­dige­nous, mi­nor­ity and con­quered peo­ples all over the world can read­ily tes­tify, and some no longer ex­ist to bear wit­ness. If democ­racy is not

rep­re­sen­ta­tive of a pop­u­la­tion’s in­trin­sic di­ver­sity, the tyranny, or rule of the dom­i­nant cul­ture in­evitably pre­vails.

New Zealand’s colo­nial ‘demo­cratic’ his­tory is, in con­sid­er­able part, a record of that tyranny.

That’s a sec­ond fail for Muriel New­man’s brand of democ­racy, along with its F for nu­mer­i­cal rep­re­sen­ta­tion. There are a num­ber of other fails on present-day democ­racy’s scorecard, notably eq­uity, en­gage­ment, in­for­ma­tion, ac­cess and par­tic­i­pa­tion.

Democ­racy is broke. New­man and her cronies can chant, “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it” all they like. It is stuck, con­fused, flawed, chal­lenged, and of­ten morally bank­rupt. It’s def­i­nitely bro­ken.

Hapu/iwi Ma¯ ori are part­ners with the Crown in Te Tir­iti o Wai­tangi, an in­dis­putably race-based doc­u­ment. The found­ing of our na­tion Fe­bru­ary 6, 1840, was un­de­ni­ably racial, but not nec­es­sar­ily or in­her­ently racist.

At cen­tral govern­ment level, Aotearoa New Zealand has found a way to ame­lio­rate lack of Ma¯ ori rep­re­sen­ta­tion and po­ten­tial tyranny of the ma­jor­ity by hav­ing Ma¯ ori seats in Par­lia­ment.

LGNZ may sim­ply be try­ing to do a sim­i­lar thing at lo­cal govern­ment level. How do we achieve Ma¯ ori rep­re­sen­ta­tion, over­come tyranny of the ma­jor­ity and hon­our Te Tir­iti o Wai­tangi? Nei­ther as­sim­i­la­tion nor ma­jor­ity rule have suc­ceeded. The im­por­tant ques­tion is, can democ­racy evolve and adapt?

To para­phrase Dr New­man, it is an ap­palling state of af­fairs when the very democ­racy that pur­ports to rep­re­sent us is it­self un­der­min­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tion. WALLY HICKS

Ko­hukohu Zealand super scheme.

The Ki­wiSaver scheme falls into this cat­e­gory be­cause of the New Zealand govern­ment’s ini­tial con­tri­bu­tion. The So­cial Se­cu­ri­ties Act 1964 states any pen­sion or other scheme con­trib­uted to or run by a govern­ment is sub­ject to Sec­tion 70.

The New Zealand govern­ment can now, or at any stage in the fu­ture, use your Ki­wiSaver funds to sub­sidise the New Zealand Super Fund, an op­tion which the govern­ment are se­ri­ously look­ing to im­ple­ment.

At­ten­tion all Ki­wiSavers — when this even­tu­ally does hap­pen (be sure it will) you will be termed as dou­ble dip­pers by the very govern­ment who per­suaded you in the first in­stance to join this scheme. All the money you have saved from your wages, along with the con­tri­bu­tions from your em­ployer, will be di­rectly de­ducted from your New Zealand Super.

When the shoe is on the other foot and you find you’ve been hood­winked yet again by the New Zealand govern­ment, let’s see how you re­act. PAUL NOR­FOLK

Cam­bridge

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