Written By: - Date published: 12:37 pm, July 14th, 2015 - 390 comments
Categories: China, cost of living, Financial markets, Globalisation, housing, overseas investment, phil twyford, tenants' rights - Tags:
Labour’s calculated but badly judged weekend adventure into race politics is reverberating.
I find it cynical that Twyford, Little and Labour aren’t “courageous” enough to hold firm on something like the CGT, a tax which would directly impact the comfortable property portfolio owning middle class in Auckland, but they are somehow “courageous” enough to step up and point the finger at the Chinese (when they are now outbidding that same comfortable Auckland middle class and their kids for $900K Mt Eden villas).
Let’s be clear here: apart from popular posturing, no political party appears to have any clue on how to make an Auckland first home affordable for the average worker earning $50K pa, let alone those many who are earning less.
Ban foreign ownership of NZ land I say. But make it an issue of economic sovereignty (a phrase Twyford never used in the weekend), not of race.
Quin says in an email to the Labour Party General Secretary, Tim Barnett:
Dear Mr. Barnett
In light of Labour’s calculated decision over the weekend to deploy racial profiling as a political tactic, I resign my membership of the party.
I am stunned that Labour, as a matter of conscious political strategy, would trawl through a dubiously acquired list of property buyers to identify Chinesesounding names. Even as I write the words, I can scarcely believe that senior party leaders – or anyone of good conscience, for that matter – thought it an advisable course of action. That they are now defending it – even attacking Susan Devoy for her principled comments on the subject – compounds my disappointment.
I lived and worked in Rwanda for several years, including in 2014, during the twentieth commemoration of the genocide against the Tutsi minority. Many of my former colleagues, still dear friends, are among the few who survived the slaughter. They taught me something about what happens when political parties start compiling lists based on ethnicity. Nothing good can come from racial profiling of the kind Labour chose to employ in pursuit of a headline and a poll bump.
It seems to me that what Quin is saying, is that the road to hell is paved with good intentions – and that Labour should have known better. I am trying to find a link to Quin’s full resignation letter. Edit – Here it is: (thanks Stephanie Rodgers!)
Phil Quin's resignation letter from Labour Party after three decades: http://t.co/AnwB8v43po
— Bryce Edwards (@bryce_edwards) July 13, 2015
Meanwhile Bryce Edwards has compiled a list of top tweets around Labour’s ill-judged racial foray. My favourite from that well known right winger Raybon Kan:
Raybon Kan @RaybonKan
No wonder John A Lee had a tough time in the Labour Party. Lee?!? What sort of a name is that mate? Have you bought a house?!?
As I have been saying, Labour has wondered into the middle of a minefield and it doesn’t even know it yet.