The Right Choice

September 11th, 2013 at 7:00 am by David Farrar

writes at Salient:

I was born into the Labour Party. Not some sort of literal love child between Norman Kirk and Helen Clark, but pretty close. On my mother’s side, my nana was orphaned by the Napier Earthquake, and the election of 1935 which brought the First Labour Government to power gave her hope. My grandfather grew up reasonably wealthy, until the Great Depression ruined his family financially. The First Labour Government gave him a job on the New Zealand Railways, a career and hope for a better life. My father’s parents emigrated from Scotland in 1955. Scots are renowned for being strong supporters of the Labour Party.

As for my folks, they are strong Labour supporters, despite the betrayals of Rogernomics. My mother is a civil servant, my father is a caretaker. Through hard work and clever saving, they have nearly paid off their mortgage. I never felt deprived, but I knew we were not the most well-off family in our street. We were working-class, but aspirational. Like most teenagers, I took my politics initially from my elders. Too young to vote, I spent most of 2005 trying to convince my older classmates not to vote National, because I thought Don Brash was a racist. When I did leave school at the end of Year 13, I chose to go out to work rather than go to university. I didn’t think a degree had much value. Now, nearly at the end of my first one, I can confirm that.

I went out to work full-time, eventually ending up working for a government department. Over about three years, I saw things that could put most people off the virtues of big government. Public servants ignoring the people they were supposed to be helping. People so dependent on the help of the state, they didn’t know any other way to make a living. I was observing with my own eyes that when the government tried to help people, it usually made things worse. It was a sobering confrontation between my bright-eyed left-wing enthusiasm and what government does, or does not, achieve. I was confronting the fact that the ideology I subscribed to did not work in reality. It was at this point that my internal pendulum swung from hard left, to centre left, to just plain centre. I was barely Labour anymore. I was still in denial, believing that as someone who was socially left, but economically nudging right, I could remain a Labour Party supporter.

I finally decided to go to university at Victoria, if for no other reason than to escape my job working for the government. One of the very first things I did was get involved in . I went to meetings and listened to ideas that I knew would never work in application. Most of them have been tried previously in New Zealand history—an artificially high $18 minimum wage, price controls, intervention in markets, government control of industry, are some examples. I was given a form to join the Labour Party. I pinned it to my wall and stared at it. I could not bring myself to do it. The Labour Party which I was raised to believe had the best interests of all people at its heart, on closer inspection was to me a collection of sectional interests. Labour had become a party made up of narrow sectors of various one-issue activists and trade unionists. It broke my heart. In short, I was losing my religion.

I recall meeting Jordan shortly after he left Young Labour. I asked him why did he leave, and he said it was because they don’t like economic rationalists!

In 2010, I drifted away from the Labour Party, who were on a weekly basis putting forward policies I thought were ridiculous and unworkable. Taking GST off fresh food, which would only provide work for tax accountants. Extending tax credits, which are explicitly for people who do work, to those that don’t work. Working-class people who slogged their guts out, day in day out, would not want more of their taxes going to those who did not work. Nationalising the productive parts of the economy. Discouraged by what the Labour Party had become, I did the unthinkable. I joined the National Party.

A few Young Nats have started off in Young Labour, believe it or not! Not aware of any who have gone the other way recently!

If you asked your average Young Nat why you should join the National Party, the answers are fairly predictable. Go to social events where you might meet the PM. Begin your long slow climb into the corridors of power. Well, I can’t dance, and I swear too much to be a Member of Parliament. To me, it really comes down to freedom. Only in the National Party can you be a supporter of both freedom to marry who you choose (marriage equality) and freedom to associate in a union (voluntary student membership). The National Party supports economic freedom totally, and a considerable amount of members, like myself, support social freedoms. The Labour Party only supports social freedoms, and not economic freedom. 

Well stated.

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58 Responses to “The Right Choice”

  1. tvb (4,432 comments) says:

    The Labour Party is deeply conservative (i.e. no change) in a whole range of issues including giving privileges to the Unions that match the medieval church, total state ownership of existing business assets and services including ACC, state monopoly provision of education services and much else. They cannot understand the market instead they think centralised planning is both sensible and the most efficient. They support high taxation and think is solves everything including booming house prices. I could go on suffice to say the Labour Party is dying.

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  2. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    The National Party supports economic freedom totally,

    ETS, WFF, Interest free student loans, and on and on ad infinitum. I don’t really have the heart to tell this guy he has mistakenly joined the wrong party.

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  3. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  4. Nigel Kearney (1,019 comments) says:

    What Nick said. It was good up until the last paragraph though.

    If you are in Labour or National, you need to accept that the people making the decisions in your party don’t have too many principles, and certainly don’t believe in freedom. They are mainly concerned with getting power and keeping it. Be like David Farrar and enjoy your involvment in the political theatre, the tactics and the process, but don’t care too much if no actual progress is being made towards the kind of society you believe in. Otherwise you are headed for a big disappointment.

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  5. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    If you are in Labour or National, you need to accept that the people making the decisions in your party don’t have too many principles, and certainly don’t believe in freedom. They are mainly concerned with getting power and keeping it. Be like David Farrar and enjoy your involvment in the political theatre, the tactics and the process, but don’t care too much if no actual progress is being made towards the kind of society you believe in. Otherwise you are headed for a big disappointment.

    Pretty much. The kind of people who were involved in politics when I was at uni had in common one feature: they were ambitious people that no rational person would ever want to trust with power.

    Plato was right: being desirous of political power should be an immediate disqualification for it.

    I wonder if this guy is suffering from lack of experience. Pretty much every workplace I’ve worked in is like this, and I’ve never been a public servant.

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  6. OneTrack (3,121 comments) says:

    Shoot the messenger – we don’t like what he is saying.

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  7. Positan (390 comments) says:

    A well-explained, rational analysis from one able to retain focus and perspective on what actually were his desired objectives. The Land of Labour is populated for the most part with uneducated dreamers who, irrespective of whatever “university qualifications” they might hold, are essentially seekers for philosopher’s stones or gold at the end of rainbows. While few ever become financially independent from their own efforts, they’ll scramble through filth to become parliamentary trough-hoggers in order to enjoy the same perks for which they condemn “the rich.” When in office, they’re the greatest spenders and abusers of other people’s money – tax, and the greatest accumulators of government debt.

    Labour is a demonstrably failed philosophy and so many of its “contributions” have warped and weakened our society’s fabric. The only reason for the party’s continued existence is the fact of our self-gutting MMP system, and today’s general dumbness among young adults – a direct result of the meaninglessness and slackness of our Labour-wrought education system.

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  8. Simon (728 comments) says:

    Labour supporter joins Labour lite. Could have put this as a heading to save skimming all the bed wetter dribble that followed.

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  9. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    He is only a kid, give him a break.

    However as he slowly came to the realisation that socialism is a dead end street, so will he eventually realise the truth that social liberalism and individual liberty are completely incompatible.

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  10. Yoza (1,879 comments) says:

    “so will he eventually realise the truth that social liberalism and individual liberty are completely incompatible.”

    I am sure that phrase is completely nonsensical. Individual liberty must surely encompass being allowed to participate in socially liberal activity.

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  11. gump (1,650 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    “eventually realise the truth that social liberalism and individual liberty are completely incompatible.”

    —————————

    I don’t know if you are being ironic, or if you simply haven’t read George Orwell’s novel 1984.

    Freedom is Slavery!

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  12. Harriet (4,988 comments) says:

    Well said Nigel.

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  13. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    “I don’t know if you are being ironic, or if you simply haven’t read George Orwell’s novel 1984.”

    What is the outcome we have witnessed here in NZ as the social liberals have assumed government and social ascendancy?

    More and more laws and regulations impacting on the freedom of individuals.

    If you can’t see this patently obvious outcome then I cannot help you.

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  14. burt (8,275 comments) says:

    The unions will be paying him a visit some time soon…. How dare he even utter the sentiment that socialism always fails – that is the biggest secret the left try and keep hidden….

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  15. gump (1,650 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    “What is the outcome we have witnessed here in NZ as the social liberals have assumed government and social ascendancy?”

    ——————-

    The outcomes we are witnessing are economic growth, freedom of thought, freedom of movement, and freedom of association.

    Our consistently high ranking on international quality of life ranking lists underscores the stupidity of your argument.

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  16. Simon (728 comments) says:

    Red it just not good enough to for anyone to say that National is the party of economic freedom.

    Aside from the over taxation & regulation when the RBNZ money print stops and the economy declines/crashes the Lenin Marxists will say look free market capitalism is a failure we need to expand the size of the Welfare State.

    Our new friend who thinks we have a free market system (worse tells all the other bet wetters the same) will flip back to the communists. His type compounds the problems society has in dealing with the shit weight heaped upon it by the State.

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  17. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    Gump is a typical delusional liberal and that is what we need to be wary of. Control freak Stalinists posing as liberators and with ideals that ignore reality. You Gump are one of the most atrociously ignorant offensive and controlling personalities on this message board, yet you profess to aspire to freedom. Ironic that it is you that writes of Orwell.

    Economic growth is pitiful. Freedom of thought is constantly under attack. Travel is getting more difficult every day. We are being forced to work and live and commute as the state wants. You are delusional, and therein lies the danger.

    I am with Samuel Adams when he wrote to his troops about the greatest document on Liberty ever written, the American Constitution, and said this-

    “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

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  18. Simon (728 comments) says:

    “The outcomes we are witnessing are economic growth, freedom of thought, freedom of movement, and freedom of “association.”

    Clown. Freedom didnt you see this story, “Michael Shaskey says Kiwibank froze US$2600 ($3265) he sent to his New Zealand account under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act.”

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/9145872/Bank-seizes-teachers-cash-under-terror-act

    Half of OECD countries are bankrupt most the others including NZ are only a few years behind the curve. Check the unemployed stats of western Europe. NZ is kept afloat for now by Chinese & NZ money printing.

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  19. Yoza (1,879 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (4,666) Says:
    September 11th, 2013 at 8:34 am

    “What is the outcome we have witnessed here in NZ as the social liberals have assumed government and social ascendancy?”

    More and more laws and regulations impacting on the freedom of individuals.

    The move to a greater socially liberal conciousness globally has been underpinned by laws and regulations being repealed, rather than more laws or regulations being enacted.

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  20. Yoza (1,879 comments) says:

    I am with Samuel Adams when he wrote to his troops about the greatest document on Liberty ever written, the American Constitution, and said this-

    “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

    Samuel Adams was a proponent of Wahhebism then.

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  21. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    “The move to a greater socially liberal conciousness globally has been underpinned by laws and regulations being repealed, rather than more laws or regulations being enacted.”

    What utter delusional rubbish. (Check out Agenda 21 and Smart Growth for just a couple of examples)

    Between 1995 and 2010, the total time spent by the public complying with federal regulations grew by 25%. Such a significant increase over the past decade and a half may well have deterred new business investment even before the 2008 financial crisis.

    Over the same period, regulatory agencies’ budgets grew by 166%, according to an analysis by Susan Dudley and Melinda Warren. The increase in expenditures occurred as agencies created new rules, stepped up enforcement of existing mandates and increased staffing.

    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/10/20/the-growing-regulatory-state/#ixzz2eWhnNY00

    Go away Yosa, you’re an insane communist freak and I don’t have time for rebutting your delusional rubbish.

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  22. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    Australia’s Labour government is another example. In the few years it was in power, it introduced 21,000 new regulations and just 300 regulations were expired. Get real FFS.

    Not that the alternatives are much better.

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  23. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    Steve Forbes- “There is something fundamentally unfair about a government that takes away so much of people’s money, power, and personal control while telling them that life will be better as a result.”

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  24. Yoza (1,879 comments) says:

    Redbaiter (4,668) Says:
    September 11th, 2013 at 9:11 am

    “The move to a greater socially liberal conciousness globally has been underpinned by laws and regulations being repealed, rather than more laws or regulations being enacted.”

    What utter delusional rubbish. (Check out Agenda 21 and Smart Growth for just a couple of examples)

    Social liberalism has been about dismantling an establishment framework that persecutes people to serve the cultivated sensibilities of a sexually and culturally repressed section of society. As a consequence archaic morality has been delegated to the responsibility of the individual as opposed to being enforced by state regulation – homosexual law reform being one of the more obvious examples.

    Lumping a growing regulatory framework in with a more socially liberal consciousness is dishonest. The link you provide has nothing to do with social liberalism, it is about increasing the regulations on the financial sector.

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  25. Changeiscoming (190 comments) says:

    This poor guy went from one left party to a centre left party. As he grows older and wiser he will continue moving right.

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  26. wat dabney (3,778 comments) says:

    Labour had become a party made up of narrow sectors of various one-issue activists and trade unionists. It broke my heart. In short, I was losing my religion.

    This is the very point.

    The original Labour parties, a hundred years ago, genuinely intended to represent and help the desperately poor workers in the face of privilege. They wanted to help those willing to help themselves.

    What has happened since is that these parties have become zombie corpses controlled and operated by special-interest groups – privileged, politically-organised state-sector employees – living on good the name of the originals but intent on plundering the workers.

    Their problem is that older voters are dying off and their children can see them for what they are. As can Asian immigrants. If they can’t buy enough bludgers votes using workers’ money then they have no future.

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  27. hj (7,033 comments) says:

    watt’s right

    To favor one’s own over others is viewed as a base chauvinism. Therefore, the inconsistency of sup­porting mass immigration while at the same time claiming a concern for the working poor disappears if one defines the working poor in international terms, rather than in chauvinistic, national ones. Put in other terms, a true Marxist should show a concern for all the strug­gling masses of mankind; to be more concerned for your own working classes is a retrograde nationalism, best eschewed. This change of focus explains, in large measure, the left’s abandonment of the workingman and joining with corporate interests on the issue of immigration. It is, of course, also the case that the parties of the left increase their power by importing third-world immigrants who overwhelmingly become constituents of those parties. The net result is that people who oppose massive immigration have no place to turn for support on either the right or the left of the political spectrum

    The Perils of Diversity(Book Review)

    http://www.wvwnews.net/story.php?id=9928

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  28. kiwi in america (2,456 comments) says:

    Redbaiter
    When your ideal government in history was the Spanish Provincial socialists/communists defeated by Franco in the 30’s you know that Yoza is hard far left.

    My journey from Labour began during Rogernomics and was completed when I was self employed and had to write cheques for tax as opposed to PAYE. In between I’d spent time at the upper echelons of Labour assisting with campaigns at various levels and strategy in the LOO office. Despite coming from a typical liberal left leaning academic home and having a Labour orientation (and party membership) since my teens, a stint in the US made me susceptible to Douglas’ ideas and, witnessing the benefits of Rogernomics even on the working class (lifting of tariffs making cars, shoes and consumer durables more accessible to poorer people and the greater choice from airline, phone and TV deregulation), I became convinced of its benefits and so aligned myself with the new right in the party. I witnessed first hand the internecine warfare that was Labour in the late 80’s/early 90’s and the campaign by the sisterhood to purge the party of what it saw as heretics and to punish Mike Moore for the crime of not recanting from Rogernomics. We fought the good fight against Bolger and Richardson but on the day I met the deposed Labour leader at Chch airport, my attachment for Labour died never to be revived. I watched the lunatic policy debates over ideas that were impractical and unworkable and I watched a slow drain from the party of the salt of the earth small c conservative working class and small business owning folk that had made my time in the party so enjoyable. I helped with a few electorate campaigns because a few good people stayed on to fight for rationality. But left behind were the angry unionists, childless feminists who could spend all their time plotting, the agenda driven rainbow coalition and the few hard core socialists who had not gone to the Alliance, Jim Anderton or the Greens. They had no use for capitalism or even common sense capitalist ways to retain party capital and fund raise choosing to sell the regional party silver to pay Head Office dues for recalcitrant and lazy MPs from safe seats. I watched the stacked selection meetings, the arrival of union heavies to swamp a vote, the nastiness and arrogance of head office and the disdain the sisterhood exhibited to anyone associated with Mike Moore, his staff and supporters. We helped Laidlaw win Wellington Central in 1992 with hardly any support from head office despite an aloof and untrainable candidate because we did the mechanics of election campaigns really well. Humiliating Mike and undermining his position was more important than winning a by-election!

    By the late 90’s and self employment I came to realize the utter futility of welfare statism and the wasted tax dollars poured down government sink holes. Labour maintained a patina of economic rationality with Cullen as Finance Minister – he kept the worst of the left leaning instincts at bay and Clark’s innate sense of political rationality meant she knew she had to temper her inner socialist with centrist trappings. Modern Labour lacks a front bench with any realistic political antennae, has a left leaning base that has forced the party to adopt a candidate selection process that assumes the rest of NZ thinks like they do when they don’t and has driven away the kind of talent that knows how to create wealth and appeal to the centre ground.

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  29. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    By “social freedom” he means the destruction of conservative traditional values.If that is what the current National Party stands for then it doesn’t have much of a future as eventually a third party will emerge like the UKIP.

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  30. tom1980 (44 comments) says:

    I can’t find a word in Jordan McCluskey’s article that I don’t agree with. Good stuff.

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  31. WineOh (630 comments) says:

    I am reading these ‘conversion’ stories with great interest… keep ‘em coming.

    My political opinion story isn’t quite so dramatic or galvanising as others above. I grew up in an middle to upper-middle class household… not that I knew it at the time. We moved overseas in the mid-eighties (during my school years), and my parents insisted on a strong work ethic drummed into me. Very hands on parenting into every aspect of school- homework, projects, results – they would never have missed a parent teacher evening. This followed onto extra-curricular activity too, music, and sports.

    My political awareness started in my last years of high school and early university days. We would often have discussion around current events around the dinner table from as early as when I could form rational opinions and argue them. Two parents (who are still married) – an accountant (to become executive management later in life) and a school teacher. By virtue of occupation alone they would lend towards the right and left respectively. I was encouraged to make up my own mind on issues, so lacked the pressure of uninformed dogma. Others witnessing these “discussions” would be more inclined to put them in the argument camp rather than debate, but that was just our family way of working things out.

    As an aside, this was also the case for religion. I was baptised as a child, went to Sunday School, and sang in the church choir. Neither of my parents however were particularly religious, and they picked up pretty early that an inquisitive and independent mind asked a lot of inconvenient questions for the world of organised religion.

    Early university days were at Vic uni in the times of Bolger. The venal anti-right brigade was strong throughout the surroundings, though generally resorted to low-brow insults of politicians. As an example, the argument against putting interest on student loans had much to do with Lockie Smith (then Education Minister) having a carrot up his bum, rather than a reasoned debate on the issues. I had gone along with much of this out of self-interest more than anything else, however student politics had a seasoned apathy about it. Protest rarely featured more than a few dozen people – and always the same die-hard firebrands. At this stage I was far more taken by the charisma and straight talking Richard Prebble, and solidified a support for the ACT party.

    My evolution into working life did little to change my views on politics. Never having worked in the public sector, I was generally surrounded by a ‘meritocracy’ view where people who worked harder and got better results were rewarded with pay rises and promotions. Rather than entitlement based on length of tenure. In economic tough times, restructuring and redundancies rarely touched me as I was generally above average performance.

    As a wage earner earning a decent (though not extravagant) wage through the Labour Clark years, it seemed that every new policy provided me little benefit and cost me more money. Married, mortgaged, no kids and above average incomes – the ideal source of net revenue for any government. Interest-free student loans, working for families are two notable examples. What struck me most about this government was the arrogance, the determination that the party knew what was best for the people in a very paternal way – without respect for the public opinion. But at least they had a firm vision, the conviction of leadership and the numbers to make it happen. I could understand most positions, even if I didn’t agree with them. They could be logically debated.

    My entrenchment into centre-right politics was helped remarkably by the economic sabotage of Michael Cullen – spend every last penny leaving the cupboard bare for the inevitable shift back to a National led government. While I haven’t agreed with every policy move by this government generally they have been strong stewards of the economy in tough times.

    My view of the labour party now is similar to those commenters above. They are playing petty public opinion politics. No reasonable rational economic policy, just vote bribes designed to cash votes rather than drive the country forward. The pen pushers are not the ones who add value to the economy, its the small-medium business entrepreneurs, those that drive innovation and productivity, and the agricultural sector that forms such a backbone in our history and economy. We will watch with interest though.

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  32. duggledog (1,559 comments) says:

    As they say if you are not a bit of a lefty when you are a callow youth then you have no heart, and if you are not a conservative voter when you reach middle age you have no brain. Kevin Spacey said words to that effect in the brilliant movie ‘Swimming With Sharks’ which I can recommend.

    On a side note I cannot believe Robertson, Jones and Cunliffe had the temerity to appear in Labour colours in Blackball.

    Those folk that live there should have run them out of town. The Labour Party which began there and the Labour representatives who visited in 2013 remind me nothing more than Star Wars Episode 4 and Star Wars Episode 3.

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  33. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    What’s interesting about these conversion stories is the complete lack of ideas. You would think that people ought to come to their political beliefs by sober analysis of the cogency of particular ideas and not from some sense of personal grievance.

    If you take your own life experience as justification for your political beliefs, you aren’t going to get very far, because nobody’s personal experience is representative of some general truth about society.

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  34. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    As a wage earner earning a decent (though not extravagant) wage through the Labour Clark years, it seemed that every new policy provided me little benefit and cost me more money. Married, mortgaged, no kids and above average incomes – the ideal source of net revenue for any government.

    You aren’t counting any of what you received and will receive in return.

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  35. kowtow (8,524 comments) says:

    Tom Jackson ,if you’re not prepared to learn from your own experience then whose,Karl Marx’s?

    Marx proposed a scientific ,logical general truth about society ………..pause for hilarious laughter……..

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  36. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    I am with Samuel Adams when he wrote to his troops about the greatest document on Liberty ever written, the American Constitution, and said this-

    “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

    I perhaps should have explained a little of the point of this statement, which is that if people are good in heart, and behave decently to each other by nature, then there is no need for a massive monolithic government edifice to regulate and police and prosecute. As there is now as a result of the Progressives’ decades long attack on our society’s moral base.

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  37. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    if you’re not prepared to learn from your own experience then whose,Karl Marx’s?

    You misunderstood my point. Basing your political beliefs entirely on personal experience is stupid, because personal experience is limited. The whole point of education is for people to pool experiences and expertise so that we get a better view of the way things are.

    Imagine how ridiculous it would be if we based our medical beliefs solely on personal experience and ignored the work done by the medical profession.

    Yet people continue to think that their personal experience is a sound basis for a view of political economy.

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  38. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    I perhaps should have explained a little of the point of this statement, which is that if people are good in heart, and behave decently to each other by nature, then there is no need for a massive monolithic government edifice to regulate and police and prosecute.

    Conservatism 101: people aren’t good in heart and don’t behave decently to each other by nature. Hence, we need a monolithic government edifice to regulate and police and prosecute.

    I can’t believe you dare to call yourself a conservative, when you repudiate the basic beliefs of conservatism.

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  39. Yoza (1,879 comments) says:

    If you take your own life experience as justification for your political beliefs, you aren’t going to get very far, because nobody’s personal experience is representative of some general truth about society.

    If your life experience is one of relative privilege and your political beliefs are calculated to preserve that status then does it matter if those political beliefs are based on personal experience and unrepresentative of a larger general truth about society? After all, if the bubble in which these people dwell is shielded from the greater social reality by necessarily manufactured illusions about how wealth is accumulated and why society appears politically stable then their personal illusions are all they have on which to found their political belief system.

    Marie Antoinette never needed to worry about whether her political beliefs were compatible with the reality experienced by everyone else and things worked out ok for her, … well for a little while, anyway.

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  40. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    I was thinking more of the “anyone can be successful and/or wealthy if they work hard” meme, which is patently false, since success and wealth are relative terms.

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  41. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Meh midle class background
    Political independent thought occurred with the collapse of Muldoons protectionist national government.
    I am convinced that the reforms of Roger Douglas as finance minister averted economic collapse for NZ.
    In 1987 My job evaporated due to an cycling accident. At the time employment was hard to get and I took the first position available.
    Working shift on a factory floor in a manufacturing industry.
    Promoted to foreman left we with a very good income keeping me working for the same company for a over decade.
    To have the knowledge to support my political views on economics I sat a basic 101 economics paper.
    I ended up a union shop steward at the company I worked for as the reforms in the labor market decimated workers bargaining power hence my potential income.
    The company attempted to bring in casual labor to reduce our barging power and remove penalty rates.
    Having an idea of how the business world worked allowed me to destroy this ploy as the training costs and collateral damage far acceded any advantage in flexibility or wage bill .
    The company managed to survive the challenges of deregulation , it still thrives today and still retains the loyalty of a motivated workforce with an above average income.
    Since being exposed to KB my Political views have been drastically altered by AGW.
    My views on which have been promulgated by the inane arguments given by Wingnuts to dispute the greatest challenge to face humanity’s civilization.
    I dont identify as a national supporter. I do consider my self to be a right wing liberal.

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  42. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    @Griff: if AGW is your reason for your political beliefs, maybe you should look at the 50to1 project. In short the premise is that even if we agree AGW is happening and it’s bad, all the policies people are currently trying to implement won’t work, and are demonstrated to not work. We need to adapt not try to stop it. Once we accept that, the policies of people like Tony Abbott make sense.

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  43. Redbaiter (9,123 comments) says:

    “I can’t believe you dare to call yourself a conservative, when you repudiate the basic beliefs of conservatism.”

    Tom, please don’t lay your indoctrinated worldview on me. I’m a mature adult not the starry eyed impressionable teenager you’re used to.

    The very essence of Conservatism is small government and self regulation. That is one reason why it attracts Christians along with classic liberals (in the true sense). If you don’t know that you need to go back to school, and this time try and get a real education.

    http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/the-essence-of-conservatism

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  44. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Dont do any thing ?
    or examine the problem with a sane base in reality and acknowledge that a movement from co2 emitting economy is inevitable.
    http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/blog/underestimate-climate-change-underfund-innovation

    Sustainability has become a race between two kinds of destruction. The destructive power of a changing climate reduces our economic activity and forces us to divert available funds toward remediation and repair, threatening our ability to incubate and fund ‘creative destruction’, first named by Joseph Schumpeter. Creative destruction replaces the old and unsustainable with new products, services and processes of greater value.

    By destroying what we have already built and forcing us to repair or write off old infrastructure, natural disasters undermine our ability to invest in the future. The increasingly frequent and severe natural disasters that climate change is causing threaten the innovation we so desperately need.

    http://www.abc.net.au/environment/articles/2013/09/11/3845626.htm

    Extreme weather and rising sea levels caused by climate change will significantly increase the need for an effective defence force. It’s why the military are taking notice of the scientists.

    WHEN AUSTRALIAN professors Colin Butler, Tony McMichael and Will Steffen stood up to talk climate change at a series of briefings in Canberra earlier this year there was something very different about the audience.

    This wasn’t a forum organised by an environment group where the seats are taken up by the usual cohort of the climate concerned.

    Instead, this audience was full of hardheaded military types and members of the defence community – people worried more about conflict and geopolitics than wind turbines and carbon footprints. This invitation to speak on climate change had come from Australia’s Department of Defence.

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  45. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    I understand where you get your perspective Grif. I don’t think it’s borne out by the facts. The IPCC reports consistently say there isn’t evidence of increase in extreme weather, and in fact the hurricane season this year in the US is starting the latest ever. Recent years have all had lower hurricane activity than normal. The temperature increase has abated, and has been slow if any for the last 15 years. The majority of reputable climate researchers are modifying downwards their estimate of climate sensitivity to CO2.

    Conversely, the actions that have been taken to try to reduce CO2 have had no effect at all. The Kyoto protocol, which was rather expensive, had no measurable impact on CO2 emissions. The Australian ETS is predicated on Australia not reducing emissions at all, all costings are based on buying carbon credits from offshore. Many of those carbon credits are poorly audited, so there is no guarantee that any reduction actually occurred, it’s a glamorous version of paying for indulgences.

    The majority of those of my friends who see climate change as a major issue all seem to believe it’s an issue for other people. They live in houses that are poorly insulated, they drive SUVs. In principle they’d like CO2 reductions, they’re not prepared to compromise anything about their lifestyle. That’s the reality.

    The only thing that will reduce CO2 emissions is provision of alternative forms of energy that are directly cost competitive and don’t emit as much, or any, CO2. Nuclear is the obvious one, but the Greens have pretty much killed that. Natural gas is a good one, the Greens don’t like fracking. The handwaving around various renewable schemes doesn’t change the fact that on a fully costed basis they’re not economic.

    In the absence of that, I think there is potential to directly pay for reductions – aka direct action. The nice thing about direct action is that it actually reduces emissions, it doesn’t have audit and accuracy issues like international trading of permits does.

    So, in short, I can agree that there’s maybe a problem. That doesn’t immediately mean that any and all hare brained attempts to address that problem are suddenly good ideas.

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  46. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Can you understand the significance to this graphic?
    The extremes we have experienced in the last decade are trending towards normal in a very short period of time.

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  47. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    How TF did Griff turn this into an AGW debate?

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  48. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    @Griff: sorry, pretty graphic but not borne out by current results. I’m not sure there’s much point playing the “my pretty graphs are different than your pretty graphs”, because I’m not sure you’re really interested. But for entertainment’s sake, try this one: http://www.mdpi.com/2225-1154/1/1/4

    Figure 5 is the one you want. Wish I knew how to embed it here.

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  49. nickb (3,687 comments) says:

    I sat a basic 101 economics paper.

    I am guessing you failed given most of your posts here and the fact that was your sole reference to tertiary study?

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  50. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Paul hit upon it from the why explanation for my political potion.

    It was not the point of my post to push AGW it was attempt to explain why my focus is changing from previously held economic positions and why I have been left with the dilemma that my rational scientifically supported view challenges the orthodoxy. exponential growth is sustainable and good.

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  51. Jordan.M (3 comments) says:

    Thank you for the comments on my piece, good or bad.

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  52. Bob R (1,377 comments) says:

    ***because I thought Don Brash was a racist.***

    It always amused me that racial preferences have been so ingrained as normal, that when Brash spoke out against them, he was the one accused of racism.

    Say what you like about Cultural Marxism, but it is very effective. :)

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  53. gump (1,650 comments) says:

    @Redbaiter

    “I am with Samuel Adams when he wrote to his troops about the greatest document on Liberty ever written, the American Constitution, and said this-”

    ——————–

    The greatest document on Liberty ever written? Bullshit. The American constitution permitted slavery until it was explicitly amended in 1865 – how can a document that permits slavery be a document of liberty?

    You are the dystopia of 1984 personified. Everything that comes out of your mouth is “Doublethink” and you are making claims that contradict plain facts.

    And for the record, the greatest document on Liberty ever written is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

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  54. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    PaulL
    The paper you quote is a joke
    it is in the class of climate pixies heat the earth.
    http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/6/4/044022
    Is the reason for the present hiatus in the surface temperature trend not mysterious cycles.
    The earth continues to warm with around ninety percent going into the oceans. The last decade was warmer then the previous
    It is obvious that you failed to watch my clip and understand its significance..

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  55. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    Thought so Griff. As you were.

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  56. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Thinking would be actually reading up on the scientist for the paper and also taking note of the the journals record.

    You have not answered my critique just avoided addressing my points.

    One of the editors of the new journal resigned disgusted at the low stranded of this paper.

    I would also guarantee your source for the paper was a wing nut blog.

    Here is a link to a blog that critiques the author’s previous work, much of which is included in the paper you cited:

    http://www.skepticalscience.co…ns-akasofu.html

    The back and forth comments at the end are most interesting!

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  57. Griff (7,819 comments) says:

    Sorry broken link.
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/brierly-resignation-climate-akasofu.html
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/search.php?Search=ns-akasofu&x=21&y=5

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  58. PaulL (5,987 comments) says:

    @Griff, you haven’t really offered a critique, although you think you have. You’ve done pretty much as might be expected given your stated positions – you’ve said you’re not interested in anything that contradicts what you already believe. For what reason would it make sense to engage with you?

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