Identity vs Class

Now Goff and his leadership/strategists are not stupid, and know they are engaging important substantial political and philosophical issues (ie identity politics vs class politics), they are also taking the opportunity to grab the superficial political points from the conservative/red neck vote at the same time.

Unfortunately, I think they will lose using either or both strategies. Political point scoring from the conservative/red neck vote can only get you so far on the left. While Trotter believes there are more social conservatives than social liberals on the left, I think that’s all too simplistic a view. I think I am social conservative in many ways. I am a Christian, but I am also Samoan. I have a tertiary education and currently hold a professional occupation, but my background is from a working class family. I have some socially conservative values, but I have some strong convictions against neo-liberal economic theories. And thus, this is the reality of post-modernism. There are many more layers to an onion, than just class or identity.

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Everything stays the same…

Green Party election billboard

Apologies, I haven’t written in a while. I must admit I’ve been pretty busy of late, but everytime I think about writing a blog entry, there’s something in me that made me pause and think ‘maybe another time’. It’s not that there wasn’t things to write about. It just seemed like it was the same things I could write about. It almost felt like I was in a boat going nowhere. Plenty to see, but the same things to see.

The source of this directionless feeling, I believe comes from my current view of the Niu Sila / New Zealand political arena. Despite plenty of things to see and plenty of things are happening in the political world, it all seems the same. I guess this is illustrated in the political polls (except the most recent ones), where despite all the hiccups, this National Government is still pulling in big numbers. Deputy Prime Minister, Bill English, is currently claiming ,000 a year from taxpayers to live in his own house, while he preaches to everyone else to tighten their belts. Yet not a dent in the Governments ratings.

Is society so apathetic? Or is the Left no doing it right? What is the Right doing so right? This feeling of futility has been an albatross around the necks of those on the Left. No matter what you do, everything stays the same.

This is further illustrated in the recent resignation of Green Party MP, Sue Bradford.

Sue Bradford was a tireless worker for the marginalised in society. Her background before entering politics was hard-edged, class-based, street-level activism. As a politician, she was one of the most well-liked, because she was able to work across party lines.

Sue Bradford is also one of the most successful MPs with the unique distinction of seeing three Members’ Bills passed into law in the last Parliament. Respectively, they lifted the youth minimum wage to adult rates, extended the length of time some mothers in prison can keep their babies with them, and amended s59 of the Crimes Act so that children receive the same legal protection from assault as adults

The Green Party launched into the MMP setting with a radical political brand that embraced, naturally, environmental issues, but also blends of eco-religious activism (rastafarian, Nandor Tanczos) and eco-socialism (Sue Bradford and Keith Locke). The new Green party was the new Left. It appealed to younger voters, such as myself, because it crossed so many more boundaries than the orthodox bigger political parties.

As a child of the 80’s, we all knew about the bombing of Greenpeace’s ship, Rainbow Warrior in Niu Sila, by French terrorists. Although, only the decade before, the effects of the anti-Springbok Tour, the Maori Land March etc, were still raw by the 1980s. We grew up being conscious of environmental and social issues, whether they were local or global. The early Greens appreciated this and work towards creating a political vehicle.

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