The New Zealand left is crying out for a left wing party. A ‘NZ left wing’ might (however sadly) be a minority that’s no longer deemed worth courting, but the fact is, so-called ‘ordinary New Zealanders’ (who you might also characterise as ‘swing voters’) are crying out for a simple message they can believe in. A stance that’s easy to understand.
They’re getting nothing like this fromNational, although even the most myopic must be starting to perceive the harm Key’s party is doing to poorer New Zealanders.
Labour so far presents nothing like a clear statement either, though. If anything, at the moment it’s ‘National Lite’. National calls the shots, Labour reacts. Weakly. This is how Labour lost the last election, too.
And that should hurt. It hurts me.
Do I need to remind everyone that Labour was originally a left wing party that sought to protect and nurture workers in a world-beating, then much emulated, welfare state?
That New Zealand emerged from The Great Depression and then World War Two with considerable wealth and enviable lifestyles for the masses … thanks to Labour?
Does anyone think that’s what Labour is capable of now? Or even anything like it?
No. Actually, as I keep saying, we’re not even sure where Labour stands in the scheme of New Zealand things except as opposition to National.
This is not satisfactory. Not even remotely.
This is what I want – and I’m sure this is shared by many:
A plan to pull New Zealand out of recession, which could/should be linked to the next, which is —
A plan to rebuild Christchurch that’s good for Canterbury.
(And what’s good for Canterbury is good for New Zealand.)
A clear raft of policies to protect our vulnerable that doesn’t further alienate the middle class – in other words, working New Zealanders need to be able to buy in to it.
That’s much easier tan it sounds – you just make it patriotic
Doesn’t everyone want that?
And if it’s too early, even ghoulish, to talk about what Labour would do with Canterbury to help it rise above this devastating ‘act of God’, can’t Labour at least hint that it’s working on it, for goodness sake?