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David Farrar is (still) the hypocrite

Written By: - Date published: 1:31 pm, May 27th, 2014 - 23 comments
Categories: david cunliffe, Economy, housing, john key, Minister for International Embarrassment - Tags: , ,

It appears that David Farrar, paid rubber mouthpiece for the National party, is exercising his right to be a hypocrite again.

This time on immigration. Here he is explaining the National party rationale about preventing economic migrants coming here seeking a better life for themselves and their children.

“Economic refugees” or “Economic migrants” are those who seek to move to another country because it has a higher standard of living. Their motivation is quite understandable – your family are likely to have a much better life in Australia or New Zealand than in say Indonesia.

And here he is here today explaining that to limit other economic migrants is xenophobia

This is the politics of blame and xenophobia. The facts do not back up what Cunliffe is trying to get people to accept.

What is the difference between the two? Well I guess it is that one group are less likely to ply the National party coffers with money to bribe their way in. For some reason having money appears to overcome David Farrar’s quibbles about economic migrants? As I said in 2010, “David Farrar – A known hypocrite and a bit of an idiot (in my opinion)“. Does he think that people don’t recognize that he tests lines for National?

Apart from the Radio NZ report that Farrar quoted being incorrect (which I see that he has acknowledged), the point about David Cunliffe statement was that we have a massive problem with housing at present in parts of the country. Most notably in Auckland because of a lack of building and Christchurch because of an earthquake. These are also the places that our returning kiwis, aussies, and most other migrants want to settle.

Since the National government has been so useless as rebuilding the housing stock in Christchurch and helping to encourage the building of useful housing in Auckland, there isn’t enough housing in either of those areas.

Now I understand that Farrar and indeed the whole of the National party suffer from short-term thinking. However part of a governments job is to anticipate problems. That they don’t is quite apparent from their bone-headed stupidity over the City Rail Link in Auckland, something that is required sooner rather than in National’s “never never worry about it” plans.

So you can see why Key, Farrar, and National get worried when someone else starts doing their job for them – acting like a responsible government and dealing with issues before they become problems. Of course empty-headed jonolists like Paddy Gower haven’t bothered to look at that amongst their ratings dogwhistle..

Update: and I see that John Key is now parroting Farrar. Wasn’t that unexpected. Test marketed and then push if there is resonance.

23 comments on “David Farrar is (still) the hypocrite”

  1. mickysavage 1

    This is all an attempted diversion. National are hurting on their lack of housing policy so helped with various media contributors they are trying to distract attention by making the issue about immigration. Good try but rather predictable …

    • james 1.1

      “National are hurting on their lack of housing policy” – Yep that was very evident on the latest poll results. Oh, hang on.

      • ffloyd 1.1.1

        What a jimmy!

      • Macro 1.1.2

        james – Nat is a “shoe in” in September – If i was you I wouldn’t even bother voting.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.1.3

        Yes Jimmy, National’s polling is significantly lower than in 2011. Without major gains they will not be able to form a government.

        • Lanthanide


        • lprent

          Well you are correct in that the Reid poll last election and post-budget had National more like 55-56% compared to their current 50-51%.

          But not quite correct on the coalition partners. On the current overall polling where National is running at something closer to 45% they won’t be able to form a government without Winston and NZ First as their only major coalition party AND therefore won’t be able to play off their coalition parties the way that they have been doing to date.

          Winston has observed virtually all of the plays to dilute and destroy the minority coalition parties by National. I suspect that he won’t stand still for it. A coalition agreement with him would be ummm comprehensive.

          Part of me just wants to see that happening. I reckon the splatter effect from it would cause some interesting patterns over the political landscape in the aftermath. But hey I like spatter movies on the odd occasion for the entertainment.

          But if he did decide to support National I suspect it would be a cross-benches on a issue by issue basis and we’d have a National minority government.

          Same if Winston/NZF really couldn’t stand working with the Greens directly and he decided to support Labour.

          Basically the best option for the left is for Labour to list their polling and for the Greens to at least maintain theirs. The closer they get to to 50% the easier a solid coalition will be. Maybe the Internet Mana party would be significiant at coalition time. But I kind of doubt it.

      • Tracey 1.1.4

        perhaps the polls just mean manipulators of truth and fact like farrar and key are deceiving people as intended. how proud their supporters must feel.

    • shorts 1.2

      “Good try but rather predictable …”

      Unfortunately their good tries tend to dominate the media discourse… and labour more often than not come out looking bad (at the best)

      So while predictable its also the thing that keeps the Nats polling as it tends to be and their tried tested and all but perfected means of controlling the topic de jour continues

    • Enough is Enough 1.3

      What planet are you on Presland? National are not hurting. They are gloating.

      And their bollocks may work.

      We need to stop being so defensive and go in and promote our policies proudly and boldly.

      • phillip ure 1.3.1

        @ enough is enough..

        ..um..!..what policies are they…?

        ..those ones to be promoted ‘proudly and loudly’..?

        ..inching up the minimum-wage..?

        ..fretting for the middle class over their housing costs..?

        ..going all winston peters at immigrants..?

        ..and drill baby drill..!..dig baby dig ! extraction-policies..?

        ..and absolutely nothing to end the blight of poverty..?

        ..just some tweaking around the edges..?..for some..?

        ,.,have i missed anything..?

        ..what is there to be ‘loud and proud’ of in that sorry bag of tricks..?

        • Enough is Enough

          You have a point. Mine was notwithstanding the piss poor policy platform that Labour currently has, we need to stop being defensive about it and get on the front foot.

  2. Tracey 2

    the real reason the nats dont want to address the issue of housing affordability?


  3. Naki man 3

    Enough is Enough I have to give you credit for being honest, we don’t know what planet Mickey is on but it is certainly spinning. Phillip your post is pretty accurate too, the last Labour policies have been aimed more to the right than National.

  4. AJohnson 4

    Maybe I’m missing something but it looks like the two posts of Farrar’s are not contradictory.

    One is advocating for strong laws against illegal immigrants arriving via people smugglers, the recent one is him warning against blaming (Presumably lawful) immigrants for house price inflation.

    Are you suggesting we not stop illegal immigration?

    • The Real Matthew 4.1

      I’m also struggling on this one.

      Yes both statements involve people coming to New Zealand but boat people seeking refugee status is a quite seperate issue to controlled immigration.

      • Pascal's bookie 4.1.1

        Well, he’s talking about ‘economic refugees’, which he defines as people who just want a better life.

        But of you want a clearer example, here is an excerpt from a Don Brash speech, which DPF defended at the time. When people suggested Brash was dog-whistling anti-immigrant sentiment, DPF said they were just being dishonest, and that Brash was just making sense about immigration, and that not all discussions of immigration were anti-immigrant.

        take it away Dr.Brash:

        And I think it is that factor – the risk that immigration could radically change the nature of our society – which underlies the very genuine concern many people have about immigration….

        …There is resentment that too many immigrants, and especially those who arrive as refugees, go straight onto a benefit, and live for years at the expense of the hard-working New Zealand taxpayer.

        There is resentment that, when we let in one refugee, we then let in his extended family group as well. Like the case of the refugee who brought in his father, mother, two dependent brothers, two dependent sisters, a dependent sister-in-law and her four dependent children!

        There is resentment that some immigrants come into New Zealand for the primary purpose of gaining access to our free education system for their children, with no intention of settling in, or paying tax in, New Zealand for the long haul.

        There is resentment that some immigrants flout the laws protecting our fisheries, and are involved in much more serious crimes of a kind that, to date, New Zealand has been largely free of – kidnapping and extortion for example.

        There is resentment, at least among those wanting to buy their first home, at the impact of immigration on house prices.

        There is fear of Islamist fundamentalism, exacerbated when a Maori convert to Islam expresses admiration for Osama bin Laden and a Muslim (Labour) Member of Parliament contends that the Koran is right to say that adulterers and homosexuals should be stoned to death.

        It is these resentments and these fears that underlie the very real concern many people have about current immigration policy.

        And while there is a widespread view that, under Labour, the Immigration Service has allowed into the country too many people who have no respect for New Zealand values, there is also anger at how difficult Labour’s bureaucracy makes it for people who at least appear to be exactly the kind of immigrants we want to encourage.

        DPF is currently attacking Labour as xenophobic for suggesting that net positive immigration has an effect on house prices, but that speech from Brash was straight up legit.


        • lprent

          Yeah exactly. Farrar appears to have a moral centre that is wrapped around his wallet and that is thoughly secured to the National party.

          Unfortunately The Standard wasn’t around at the time of Brash’s Owera speech and I wasn’t reading Farrar then. Nice historical instance

      • Once was Tim 4.1.2

        ” …….. but boat people seeking refugee status is a quite seperate issue to controlled immigration.”

        I imagine the same holds true for plane people seeking refugee status too huh? (/sarc if it wasn’t already obvious)

    • lprent 4.2

      If you read Farrar’s post back in 2012 he was attempting to sell the line that people trying to come into the country as economic migrants (as opposed to “genuine” refugees) was a bad thing and needed legislation to prevent them from entering the country – presumably because they would cause economic dislocation. He never is too clear when he is dog whistling xenophobia and racism.

      Now, purely for the sake of a political line in an election campaign (or possibly National’s chest of bribes donations from those economic migrants that have been featuring in the news recently), he is arguing that New Zealand’s economic dislocations don’t matter.

      The economic problem with increasing overall migration into NZ is the shortage of housing stock in two of our three main centres; Auckland and Christchurch. By the sounds of what I was hearing from people down there, the same thing is starting to happen in the Wellington area as well. Damn near all migrants into NZ; returning kiwis and people from other countries settle in one of those three areas. Having an increase in overall migration back to or to NZ will cause a massive economic problem in those areas because they won’t have the housing.

      If we start having large numbers of kiwis returning from aussie (as has been happening), and increasing numbers of aussies coming here (as has been happening) then there are only three solutions to the shortage of housing.

      • Build more housing and more affordable housing – which isn’t going to happen any time soon because we don’t have capacity for it. We haven’t been keeping up with demand for more than a decade.
      • Have a major increase in the homeless people and overcrowding – which is bad enough now. Then we suffer the consequences of that in terms of disease, social and economic dislocations, and an increased need for prisons
      • Reduce immigration from groups other than returning kiwis and aussies

      Obviously we should do the first. What we will need to do in the short term is the last. Because that is the only way to prevent the overcrowding and homelessness.

      National hasn’t been doing much to encourage the building of housing. We need something like 15 thousand dwellings per year to be added in Auckland for the foreseeable future and we are currently only seeing a small fraction of that. We’re also seeing even less of the affordable housing, which they seem to want to actively discourage.

      Farrar is just dog-whistling to cover that up. On the way through he is somehow differentiating between immigrants who can contribute to Nationals coffers and the ones who can’t. Basically he is acting overtly as a hypocrite tool of National testing a line for them to distract

  5. captain hook 5

    farrar the fat boy has a screw loose. any time key punches his button he does what he is told. anything!

  6. RedLogix 6

    There are over 1 million NZ born kiwis living overseas. It only takes a small fraction of these to decide to return home to place an intense overwhelming pressure on housing, jobs, infrastructure.

    Makes perfect sense to manage this situation – it’s what governments are for.

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