Probably stuck with the current system

A fascinating and very perceptive analysis by Danyl Mclauchlan at The Spinoff: The New Zealand Project offers a bold, urgent, idealistic vision. I found it deeply depressing

It covers neoliberalism, the failure of the left to sell their ideals and have a revolution, and looks at what can be done to fix New Zealand’s problems. It’s lengthy by there are many things worth discussing.

Politics is technocratic because modern societies are complex: many things could be better, but almost everything could be much, much worse, and all the high-minded values in the world are worthless if you can’t keep the lights on.

It is compromised because pluralism – the challenge of different groups in society holding different and conflicting but reasonable and valid views – is the central problem in politics, and cannot be fixed by re-educating everyone.

Political reform should be cautious, because outcomes are uncertain, and overconfidence bias is real, especially among groups of intelligent experts who reinforce each other’s assumptions, a dynamic that often leads to catastrophic failure despite the best of intentions.

Maybe the current system’s inability to address the housing bubble, inequality and environmental issues means we’re hitting the limits of a political system based on caution and compromise, and that will eventually provoke a wider crisis similar to the near economic collapse of the early 1980s, which led to the neoliberal reforms.

It’s a fairly common fantasy – especially on the radical left – that there will be a crisis followed by a left-wing rebirth.

It’s also common to see this on the radical right – there will be a revolution taking us back to some mythical ‘good old days’.

I think it’s dangerous to assume that the left would be the beneficiaries of any kind of crisis or collapse.

Same for the right.

We’re probably stuck with the current system, and trying to make change within it.

That’s almost certainly correct. Incremental change trying to improve what we have, rather than changing things entirely and replacing it all with some vague ideal.

We are probably stuck with the current system.

But it is a lot easier to tweak things to try to improve problems rather than a total replacement of something that generally works fairly well with something vague that would have unpredictable and less perfect.

Leave a comment

67 Comments

  1. “It’s also common to see this on the radical right – there will be a revolution taking us back to some mythical ‘good old days’.” Do you refer to the Rt Hon W. Peters? I can think of no politically far-right movement who advocate a return to what I imagine are 1945 -1970 ideals. We were in the grip of a highly regulated post war rebuild and an optimism which feels ever so the best of socialism to me

    Reply
    • It’s common to hear people from the right lamenting the good old days. Redbaiter was a classic but it’s not uncommon at Whale Oil and Kiwiblog.

      Reply
      • Anonymous Coward

         /  24th April 2017

        it’s common to hear OLD PEOPLE lamenting the good old days.

        Reply
        • Griff

           /  24th April 2017

          Horse shoe theory
          https://www.google.co.nz/imgres?imgurl=https://masonologyblog.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/political-spectrum-horsesho.png&imgrefurl=https://masonologyblog.wordpress.com/2014/12/30/horseshoe-theory-our-new-religion/&h=310&w=423&tbnid=rH4yYE49gNFR8M:&tbnh=147&tbnw=200&usg=__bTtpVBhrHpKenzyA1MxHFLHVGBk=&vet=1&docid=sko5l7Iu8uDKEM&itg=1&client=firefox-b&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwikuYzat7vTAhVFa7wKHRLEAX8Q_B0IdTAK#h=310&imgdii=rH4yYE49gNFR8M:&tbnh=147&tbnw=200&vet=1&w=423
          The far right and far left have more in common with each other than to the center
          This includes a desire to rip down the system they believe excludes them from power.
          The real power in a democracy is the center.
          as the https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/fb/Overton_Window_diagram.svg/220px-Overton_Window_diagram.svg.png illustrates.
          Neoliberal
          I worked in a protected industry in 1984.
          I could see that our protected industrys, though benefiting me personally, made our country inefficient and cost all of us wealth.

          Over the next few years I joined the act party and sat a 101 economics paper to understand what I was voting for .
          The changes that happened under rogernomics were necessary for our country future at that time.

          Our agriculture industry is stronger now than it has ever been
          Not being distorted by subsidy our farmers have innovated away traditional methods and markets.
          We now are major players in both diary and wine world wide.
          Our farming sector the bed rook of our economy is stronger than ever for standing on its own two feet .

          We will never be able to compete with off shore company’s in commodity manufacturing
          My old job making car tires was a joke.
          Over paid under worked making expensive rubbish on obsolete machines that the punter had no choice over .
          We were all better off doing something productive that satisfies a market rather than the make work that existed to service government government decree on what NZ Ltd should make from locomotives to car tires.

          The influence of neoliberalism has justly faded from our political landscape as its job has been done.
          We now have one of the most free markets in the developed world.

          National, over the last few tums, has done little except maintain the status quo .
          National is a huge edifice straddling the center of nz political landscape.

          Labor is a party seeking a position rather than staying in the center .With the retreat of union influence in the populous labour no longer has the blue collar democratic is its potential base.

          The left has a well developed family of party’s giving left wing voters choice over influence .

          The right wing in NZ has failed to capitalize on the potential for MMP to give a more nuanced voter choice.The right needs more party’s to give voters more choice over the direction of right leaning governments .

          Reply
          • @ Griff – I like a lot of what you write … it generally contains much common sense.

            “I could see that our protected industrys, though benefiting me personally, made our country inefficient and cost all of us wealth.”

            Two things about this –

            1) Its interesting to note that nowadays people vote primarily based on what benefits them personally … recently proved on here by a survey I recall …

            Some people’s selfish motivations include reduced taxation, no capital-gains tax and cutting government spending (to reduce tax) by axing or reducing social welfare payments to groups of people they percieve as being bludgers and indolents, if not implicitly criminals …

            2) I have never thought nor will think – until it gets done – that either “efficiency” or “wealth” have been adequately investigated and defined.

            A degree or extent (there’s those words again) of inefficiency which creates or maintains employment and keeps money circulating through a healthier local economy may be useful, socially beneficial and hence a ‘good’ thing?

            There is wealth and there’s “wealth”, like there’s “unity” and unity. [Unity, for instance, means very different things in bicultural terms in Aotearoa NZ].

            The idea that efficiency “cost us all wealth” implies we necessarily want or deserve more wealth and that financial wealth is the only sort or the only sort worth having …?

            But what about wealth of time and availability, leisure time for family and friends, for sport, recreation and creativity? For voluntary activities? What about wealth of healthier lifestyle, less stress and dis-ease? What about personal and individual and group and communal alternative forms of wealth?

            “Cost us all wealth” or “more wealth” speaks to the neoliberal process of ‘financialisation’, the commodification of everything … which is one of the central disagreements many people have with it …

            Personally I think we’re always talking about evolution rather than revolution, only if evolution is suppressed for long enough it may or will be more ‘explosive’, radical, inhumane and possibly violent …

            Sans violence (depending on how you define it) that’s what the ‘reforms’ of the 80s and 90s were like …

            But even evolution and “tweaking things” is itself political … because the current system, like all systems, is based on an ideology as well as practicalities … and we may need to tweak the ideology as well as the practicalities …

            Reply
      • Trumpenreich

         /  24th April 2017

        “It’s also common to see this on the radical right – there will be a revolution taking us back to some mythical ‘good old days’.”

        “people from the right lamenting the good old days. ” does NOT = Revolution talk.

        The Right never talks about revolution except about what to do to avoid one or reverse it.

        Right wingers are alternatively referred to CONSERVATIVES for a reason.

        As for “mythological good old days”, it is in fact completely reasonable to evaluate certain periods of history as better than others. I’m sure all those Venezuelans see the pre Leftoid take over as a better time in their country’s history, and justifiably so.

        Reply
      • Corky

         /  24th April 2017

        The good old days may be code for still having some semblance of common sense guiding society, as opposed to the squeaky wheel mentality we have at present,

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  24th April 2017

          The problem with common sense as a guide is that its common for different people to have a different idea of what is sensible, Corks.

          Reply
          • Corky

             /  24th April 2017

            Ok, lets explore that. A vicious Maori criminal is cornered but police don’t want to move until the Maori Liaison Officer is called. Would a European receive similar treatment?

            Police don’t move in on a robbery scene at a dairy. The shop owner is injured on the ground. The situation is know by first responding officers but they don’t move until backup arrives. The shop owner dies of his injuries. He may have been saved if police weren’t hampered by PC safety regulations. Police are paid to die in the line of duty. This happened in Auckland to a dairy owner I knew.

            I think that’s why some like me hark back to the good ole days.

            Reply
            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

              lets hear about your ‘good ole day’s and your reasons why things have…changed.

            • Corky

               /  24th April 2017

              See above.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              The police aren’t paid to die in the line of duty Corky. Even soldiers do their best to avoid it, except for those whose religion, indoctrination, ethos or personal heroism motivate it.

              I don’t think a Maori liaison officer was called in to talk to Graeme Burton or to David Gray at Aramoana, where Sergeant Guthrie paid with his life for not waiting for backup, & he didn’t put an end to the massacre, or the danger he was. The Anti-Terrorist Squad (now the Special Tactics Group) did when they got there & he eventually came out firing.

              I am sorry for the shopkeeper & his family. I think I remember that case. The police commanders are probably accountable for the lives of their officers & are thinking of theirs too, although if some want to go in in or take the offender out in that situation I don’t blame them. They’ve done it before, including shooting a gunman dead in the Street in Upper Hutt down our way not too long ago.

              But I thought you were talking in terms of politics generally.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              I think you miss the point that when dealing with violent and/or dangerous people, police generally will try and seek a peaceful surrender with no harm to anyone else, by whatever means is the most appropriate or likely to be successful. When that’s not possible, they can & do kill the offender.

            • Corky

               /  24th April 2017

              That’s my point. In days past common sense prevailed. The responding officers had in the case above a reasonable expectation of what to expect. Even if they didn’t ,offenders would have been engaged in years past. Now officers in many cases don’t have the choice of using common sense when they think its necessary. They are hide bound by procedure that is expected to cover all situations.

              You may have seen the Jan Molenaar documentary where an ex cop spoke out about the absolute shambles that operation was and how it may have been done better. But police hierarchy wouldn’t listen.

              That’s what I miss about yesteryear…..common sense that most in society knew…….was common sense.

              This chap knew about common sense.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              He’s an actor Corky. The only danger he was in there was of mentally defective people thinking he was real & shooting him at a restaurant because they thought he killed their brother.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              You may have seen the Jan Molenaar documentary where an ex cop spoke out about the absolute shambles that operation was and how it may have been done better. But police hierarchy wouldn’t listen.

              I’m not sure if I have. I’d like to. I’ll see if I can find it online somewhere & watch it.

              Corky, the last thing I want to see is an article in the paper praising the bravery of c’s dead daughter in the police force when she took precipitate action that cost her life when waiting for backup might have prevented that.

            • Corky

               /  24th April 2017

              ‘He’s an actor Corky.’ No, he’s representation of his time. Harry was a social statement between the inroads liberalism was making into the previous conservative American psyche.

              Harry had to deal with female and minority quotas. He had to contend with a liberal press and a justice system that had become soft.

              Harry was a dinosaur that his bosses wanted gone. That his side kicks didn’t last long and he nearly always got the crooks now amounted to little. It was all about procedure.

              The times where changing ( sometimes for the better), but the baby was being thrown out with bath water. Harry showed that in stark relief.

            • Yes but Harry’s various systemic impediments to dispensing instant justice were fictions too. It was necessary to write them into the script & exaggerate their assholeness that way to create his character & make him the obvious & only sensible good guy. Which of course he was. But in a movie.

              I couldn’t initially find the Molenaar documentary you were mentioned featuring the cop who said the police hierarchy wouldn’t listen to him & things may have been done better. I ended up watching the docudrama they made about it: The Siege – The Real Story, thinking that maybe some cops were featured speaking about it at the end. What a nightmare situation that was.

              Then I had another go with google & found this. Is this what you were referring to?
              https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/crap-have-done-former-cop-reveals-final-moments-napier-siege

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  24th April 2017

              Backup isn’t the same as being PC. I assume that an ambulance had been called and that the police didn’t just leave the man there bleeding to death. There’s a limit to what can be done without medical equipment.

              I also find it a bit hard to believe that a violent criminal would be let to escape while a Maori Liason Officer was called-that makes no sense.

            • Corky

               /  24th April 2017

              That’s the one.I’m impressed

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              Well, seeing the docudrama first – which I thought was very well done & I hope got some sales & screenings overseas – and then that police negotiator segment on the Sunday programme was useful.

              I noted before I watched it that ‘Siege’ received favourable comment from some of the other police officers who were there on the ground & who were asked for input & advice.

              That was a pretty unique situation, & to some extent Lance Burdett’s evaluation of how it could have gone better may have elements of him being wiser after the event when it wasn’t his call to make. His initial complaint is that they didn’t allow Molenaar 3 or 4 hours to sleep, as he suggested: that the officer in charge said to call him every hour on the hour – which would mean sleep deprivation could make Molenaar even more crazy & unpredictable.

              My response to that is that it’s unlikely Molenaar would’ve slept on cue, or even at all, throughout this. He didn’t trust the police.

              His other main complaint is that the police commander & aides were reading texts he was receiving from an ex-girlfriend & she was telling him to kill himself – but he was never informed of that, which would have changed his approach when talking to him considerably. They fudged that in the docudrama – you couldn’t see what the texts were saying or who they were from.

              His conclusion was that because he put Ms Keefe on the line to talk to him, after he had begun to tell them he intended to die, Molenaar then took that as an opportunity to say goodbye to her, and then killed himself – the shot was heard on police comms – (they didn’t reveal that in the drama) he had failed.

              So he believed the correct thing to do was everything possible to contain the situation, & to bring him out to a peaceful surrender ithout any further loss of life. The police learned valuable lessons from that siege, Corky.

        • Blazer

           /  24th April 2017

          have you run out of…oil…Corky?

          Reply
          • Corky

             /  24th April 2017

            Yes, your rusty wheels take some oiling…..Blazer. I don’t usually do this but I’m down voting you for being cheeky arrogant Leftie.

            Reply
      • Okay, I wasn’t thinking forums, thinking actual pol movements

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  24th April 2017

          The good old days are generally 50 years or two generations before the present.

          I read a letter in a 1920s newspaper from someone who was tired of people banging on about the ‘good old days.’ They concluded by saying words to the effect of ‘wake up, THESE are the ‘good old days’. They were right, too. I have a collection of old magazines, and every so often one sees a letter complaining about how much better it was when…how much better-mannered/better spoken/blah blah blah than the present (whenever the letter was written) and the people (young ones in particular) of the present were when the writer was one. Yeah, right,

          Of course, the ‘quotes’ from Socrates and Hesiod along these lines are NOT genuine, although they keep appearing and being believed. No amount of debunking and discrediting can kill them, alas.

          Reply
  2. Blazer

     /  24th April 2017

    ‘Maybe the current system’s inability to address the housing bubble, inequality and environmental issues’…..Govt is meant to address these issues.The Govt we have needs to ‘get some guts’….don’t blame the….system.

    Reply
    • Anonymous Coward

       /  24th April 2017

      Aren’t they going to put them up in a pavilion in Dubai? That’s ‘kinda’ ballsy.

      Reply
    • The Government largely is ‘the system’, or at least it controls the functional part of the system.

      Reply
      • Blazer

         /  24th April 2017

        are you saying they cannot take action to address issues like …the housing crisis?

        Reply
      • Blazer

         /  24th April 2017

        ‘Muldoon meddle to the point of almost ruining the country. We survived and largely recovered after drastic measures were taken, and have then been tweaked since then.

        Some things have failed to work adequately and need addressing, but I don’t see a compelling argument that the whole system has been a failure, especially not so much so that it needs to be replaced with something that is unproven ideology.’

        so are you for or against …’the system’?

        Reply
        • The system we have is probably better than any of the alternatives, but it will always need improvements.

          Replacing the current system with a different one would cause massive disruption at massive risk, and we would end up with another imperfect system that would encounter future difficulties that people would blame on the system. At best.

          Reply
          • Blazer

             /  24th April 2017

            if the present system cannot address these vital issues,by your own logic,it needs changing…’Maybe the current system’s inability to address the housing bubble, inequality and environmental issues’….’….your assumptions on how that unfolds are not constructive and imply the present ‘system’ cannot be improved upon.

            Reply
        • So you’re not putting the last 30 years in a reductive neoliberal basket then blazer! Pleased about that.

          Reply
          • Blazer

             /  24th April 2017

            but do you have any suggestions other than…maintain the status quo..because presumeably…it works…for…you?

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              I can & often agree with things you say about the defeciencies in our current system of government & neoliberalism & globalism, corporatism,& financialism, but I’m not really sure what you want in its place, or what changes you want to see made to it, Blazer?

            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

              @G…start with reforming the financial system so the people are not at the mercy of private central bankers and the mayhem they inflict.They are unproductive …parasites .

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              Which country has successfully done that?

            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

              before women were actually given the vote,no country had actually…given them the vote!So do you see how feeble your argument is.?

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              You’re too pugilistic. It’s not an argument, it’s a question. And my reason for asking it is to try & establish if you know what, if New Zealand decided to be the first to try it, the impact would be on New Zealand.

              It cetainly bothers me that the entire edifice of the global economic system is based only on a confidence trick.

            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

              if NZ tried that ,the Govt who enacted it would be…’gone by ..lunchtime’….Any country or individual that tries to challenge the pvt bankers gets….wasted or assassinated.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              So … what’s the plan then?

            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              Art is the plan?

            • Anonymous Coward

               /  24th April 2017

              The girl is an advert, the bull is art.

            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

              @G…its cryptic,but a man of your undoubted intelligence will work out the…’plan’…from that..image.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              It’s a bit like patu posting songs in the expectation everyone will get the same message, though, Blazer. That doesn’t always happen because interpretation can be so subjective. That image could represent many things. The puny girl could stop the bull by staring it down. The bull could run over the puny girl & keep going …

              What I would like to know is how you think any government working with the system we have should deal with some of the problems they have produced, for example unaffordable housing, unemployment / underemployment, high private debt, low wages, high incarceration rates.

            • Blazer

               /  24th April 2017

              there have been many and varied solutions proposed for the problems you list.This govt is one of expediency,they tweak,delay,obsfucate and kick the can down the …road.They are a …disgrace.

            • Anonymous Coward

               /  24th April 2017

              “a man of your undoubted intelligence will work out the…’plan’…from that..image.”

              That’s a very loaded image.

            • Gezza

               /  24th April 2017

              Well, maybe. The opposition haven’t come up with a convincing plan to deal with these issues either yet, going by the polls. Mind you, they’d be silly to give out too much detail yet if they do have feasible options because the Nats will nick the. Interesting to see some coming together of minds cross-party on tackling offending & high incarceration rates of young, uneducated, unemployed persons with Maori or mixed Maori-Pakeha ancestry. This is multi-generational problem in many cases. What I don’t see is good plans to provide meaningful employment for many of them.

              That’s not me downticking you btw.

            • In that one instance you cite Gezza, I believe the system as we know it is actually bereft of solutions … Our successive governments – managers of the financialised economy – are more-or-less not allowed to look at the potential solutions … ideologically much less practically … if such solutions, ie jobs, even exist …

              The people you refer to – along with pakeha persons in the same position – might be employed in many of the industries that currently use migrant labour – or actively encouraged to upskill – except it would take [more] guidance, incentives, training and ‘systems adaptation’ to achieve this, as well as changes to immigration policy [which I firmly believe is dictated to us ‘globally’] …

              The simple fact is that doing this will cost money – taxpayers’ money – “other people’s money” – and the return on investment will not be ‘privatised’ so much as collective, social and societal … things like ‘healthier communities’ … sounder regional economies … crime reduction … improved health and mental health outcomes etc etc … which don’t show up on companies’ ‘bottom line’ balance sheets …

              Really its ‘easier’ and more ideologically ‘sound’ (ethically unsound) to pay-and-punish these people with minimalized, austere social welfare and lock them up if they misbehave … (for which we need a ready made and ‘easy’ excuse like cannabis) …

              There’s always a migrant to take the job … [hence we both export AND IMPORT labour issue solutions! We source cheap-labour manufactured products overseas and import cheap service labour from overseas] …

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  24th April 2017

              The image of The Fearless Girl is PC and decidedly patronising to all the women who have made it in their careers without needing such things.

              Being fearless isn’t synonymous with being brave. There’s nothing courageous about doing something that you’re not afraid to do. I believe that fearless soldiers and pilots are liabilities-and have heard old soldiers say things along the lines of anyone who says that he wasn’t shit-scared was a liar or an idiot,

  3. Trumpenreich

     /  24th April 2017

    “It’s a fairly common fantasy – especially on the radical left – that there will be a crisis followed by a left-wing rebirth.”

    Marxism 101. A toxic ideology that has permanently infected the Left and is profoundly hostile towards liberal democratic societies.

    Reply
  4. Trumpenreich

     /  24th April 2017

    “It is compromised because pluralism – the challenge of different groups in society holding different and conflicting but reasonable and valid views – is the central problem in politics, and cannot be fixed by re-educating everyone.”

    Pluralism doesn’t work when you flood white Western democracies with Third Worlders.

    Diversity + Proximity = Conflict.

    Reply
  5. Trumpenreich

     /  24th April 2017

    Are you stealth censoring me out of this website, Mr George?

    [No. You have been untrustworthy so your posts have to wait in moderation until I get around to checking them. I have already released several today.

    You don’t get to say whatever you like here. If you comply with fairly liberal guidelines your comments may be allowed through, but if you breach protocols you reduce your privileges to comment.

    Have you returned under a different identity after refusing to comply with site protocols? PG]

    Reply
    • Trumpenreich

       /  24th April 2017

      I take that back, kind of. Why am I being heavily moderated with extremely long process times, which basically leaves me shut out of any debate.

      Reply
      • I have explained why you’re going through auto moderation. I’m not available 24/7 to instantly assess and release comments. Your history has reduced affected trust and your privilege to comment here.

        Reply
    • Trumpenreich

       /  24th April 2017

      “Have you returned under a different identity after refusing to comply with site protocols? PG]”

      I’ve never done anything nasty on here. I always made a political argument, colourfuliy expressed at times. I never did anything illegal, I never harassed anyone, never had ulterior motives, never tried to sabotage you or anyone or this site. I only ever gave shit back when it was being thrown at me ( often mobbed ) for the transgression of merely having unpopular opinions.

      Reply
      • That’s quite different to how I remember things.

        “never tried to sabotage you or anyone or this site” – you often mass blamed, and also blamed individuals including me of generalised things with no substantiation.

        When asked to follow standards your last comment was as Kiwi Guy was “I don’t give a flying fuck.”

        Reply
        • Trumpenreich

           /  24th April 2017

          “When asked to follow standards your last comment was as Kiwi Guy was “I don’t give a flying fuck.””

          Probably finally broke after being on the receiving end of a mobbing on here. I’m only human.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  24th April 2017

            People who say that often use it to excuse their inhumanity.

            Reply
  6. Trumpenreich

     /  24th April 2017

    From the article:

    “Civics education is his [Max Harris] preferred solution…Schools should teach children to think what Harris wants them to think: that would solve an awful lot of problems…if you want to redesign the education system to produce a more compliant populace you have to first acquire political power.”

    Whooa! Openly talking about their Leftist agenda to make a more “compliant populace” by brainwashing the kiddies. I desperately wanted to believe the journalist was taking the piss, but he’s serious. The journalist only laments Harris has failed to come up with a plan to seize political power to enact their Progressive agenda.

    #Marxism 101.

    Reply
  7. Auto_Immune

     /  24th April 2017

    Basically off-topic, but I’m asking here since it references a Danyl article: What happened to the dim-post site? It used to be one of favourites before it became a “protected blog”

    Reply
    • I think Danyl had had enough of it. Just like he had earlier become fed up with Twitter.

      It’s quite a commitment keeping a blog going, especially when some people are intent on using and abusing it.

      Sanctuary used to comment there. This is what he (now) thinks of Danyl:

      24 April 2017 at 10:35 am
      Danyl McLauchlan is another middle class intellectual and defeatist who thinks everyone’s values deserve an equal hearing and they are all relativistic and there are just so many variables and anyway modern society and politics is so complex that it needs technocratic elites* to relieve us of making hard decisions and it is all just to hard and besides he is doing all OK so why should he bother with idealism and hard questions of ideology?

      Personally, I don’t take the word of self appointed middle class clever clogs commentators on hipster websites like thespinoff who profess to not being clever enough to undo the Gordion knot as meaning it can’t be undone. To me, that just means the problem is beyond the intellectual ken of Danyl McLauchlan. I suspect that while all the middle class Danyls out there are hand wringing about the problem, someone a lot smarter might come along, take a look, and just use their sword.

      *Danyl is, of course, a member of the technocratic elite himself.

      https://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-24042017/#comment-1323054

      Reply
      • Auto_Immune

         /  24th April 2017

        You’re (sadly) probably right PG. I hope ‘Your NZ’ doesn’t goes that way!

        Also, it’s good to know Sanctuary’s “insight” has a nautral home that I seldom bother with.

        Reply

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