I have been thinking and talking about the dilemma that we have with the Labour government and who might be in power in a little over a year’s time. The conversation almost always starts like this.
‘we need Labour back in power because the Nats will be worse’.
Apparently we just accept the party that has betrayed its people so badly. To give just one example this is the party that does nothing for the 3 poorest electorates in the country, all of them in South Auckland, but garners all their votes at election time.
Since the election of Labour four years ago I have been on protests for a variety of issues many of them that would have been dear to Tribal Labour’s members. But when Labour are in the driving seat they remain silent. Once the Nats get back in Tribal Labour will be back, they will be marching and shouting on the streets for the very same issues that they kept quiet about when ‘their’ party were governing:
- Doing next to nothing about housing (saying they had built x number of houses, which they may have but not saying how many they had had demolished at the same time).
- Poverty, poverty, poverty.
- Public hospital waiting lists and all the other stuff in health being left behind.
- Prison reform
- Getting rid of the Commissioner of children (too much criticism by the Commissioner of the government for them to handle).
- Cannabis reform – don’t be so gutless, lead that is your job
- Alcohol reform – as above
- The cost of food and other necessities including rentals
Shouldn’t we as we have done before be thinking outside the two party scenario. I haven’t voted Labour since the mid 1980s. I was a founding member of the New Labour Party set up by Jim Anderton when the Labour Party departed from its own kaupapa. A member of the Alliance and eventually a member of the Green Party.
The Green Party have totally lost their way since the great days of Jeanette Fitzsimons and Rod Donald’s leadership. Promoting chocolate with Te Reo on the wrapper seems to be of much more importance than the housing crisis and those living in cars and tents and disgusting motels.
Me, well yesterday I signed up to Te Pāti Māori. The most pressing issue in Te Ao and the wider world as we all know is CLIMATE CHANGE. Te Pāti Māori has the best climate change policy of any party in parliament. I have no doubt that their other policies are going to get it right for Māori and as we have said for many years that will mean we get it right for all Kiwis.
We need to get behind and properly support these small parties that could have a real say in any future government. TOP also has some good meaningful policies.
This is very interesting Bronwen. Actually it feels a lot like 1988 all over again – should we stick with Labour or move on? As someone who voted Labour for the first time since 1987 in 2020, I would like to stay and see it through. But there is that strong sense that the Party has self-hobbled on many fronts, and that a lot more could be done to shift some wealth from rich to poor, to sort out housing at the bottom end and in many other areas. I loved the government’s response to Covid. I love Jacinda’s emotional intelligence. But there has to be a better way, doesn’t there? Put me down as undecided at this point.
I have been tribal labour all my life. I have successfully stood for the Labour Party as a candidate 5 times.
However, in 2017 I cut up my life members card of the LP because I was so annoyed at how the party had used those of us struggling in the community housing sector to get them into office, and they then shat on us when they got there. Things haven’t changed.
In my lifetime I have worked for Technical education. This sector has been shafted by this government. I have worked with local government also shafted by this government. The government’s approach to 3 Waters has been nothing more than scandalous. When I appeared in front of the Select Committee considering submissions on the 3 Waters legislation (much of which has not appeared in public yet)_the chair asked was I supportive of the legislation. I offered to lend him my hearing aids.
The government is completely focused on centralising as much of government services as is possible. The health reforms will be a disaster.
Martyn Bradbury recently wrote that if the Labour Party spent less time focusing on pronouns and more time of addressing poverty things would be quite different for them electorally.
On and on it goes. But the question is where do we go? How do we protest? The party just doesn’t listen.
A mate and I talked recently of forming a party called “None of the above”. I bet we would receive a big response. The only problem is we might get over 5%. Then what would we do…..
Keep up your encouraging debate.