There is no misogyny in New Zealand *

Written By: - Date published: 8:48 am, January 24th, 2023 - 62 comments
Categories: Christopher Luxon, crime, human rights, jacinda ardern, uncategorized, violence against women - Tags:

In as perfect an example of mansplaining you could ever imagine yesterday AM host Ryan Bridge said this in response to the claims that misogyny had a large part to play in Jacinda Ardern’s decision to stand down.

“Some of the headlines have been ridiculous. There was one headline I saw the other day about the Prime Minister being driven from office by online trolls. I mean, that is so melodramatic,” Bridge said on AM on Monday.

“It’s just bizarre because, one, it assumes that she’s reading all of the online troll messages from the misogynists and whoever. And second of all, it kind of undermines the fact the polls weren’t going well,” he added.

He thought that the polls had consistently shown that support for Ardern was dropping.

Bridge said the polls had consistently shown support for Ardern was dropping and her decision to leave makes sense.

“Any smart politician will look at that and they will say, ‘Do I have another campaign in me? Do I really want to be scrapping with Chris Luxon over the cost of living when I’ve just got us through COVID? I might be going on to some international job after this. The longer I am here, the worse my reputation will be tarnished as I go through a very bloody campaign. Wouldn’t the smartest thing to do would be to pull out now?’ And I think that’s what the Prime Minister’s done.”

His comments were, surprise surprise, echoed by former National Party ministerial advisor Brigitte Morten who called Helen Clark’s remarks “naive” and “condescending”. 

“I think it’s a little bit condescending and perhaps a little naive to say that this [online hate] played a role,” Morten told Newshub Late.

And their comments occurred after Christopher Luxon came out with this extraordinary comment when being interviewed on Morning Report:

Guyon Espiner: Are you subject to abuse?

Christopher Luxon: I know I am, I’m sure I am but the reality is I handle it and I don’t live my life on Twitter

Espiner: Is it worse for women

Luxon: I’m not sure about that…there is just deep polarisation of political views.

Luxon did try and walk back his comments after this.  But you can see that the imperative of scoring a political blow is more important to him than actually making a proper concession.

From each of them there is no concession that Jacinda Ardern was subject to the most level of vitriol and hatred that I have ever witnessed.

Things are that bad that she, and her daughter Neve and partner Clark, are going to continue to require police protection as pointed out in this article by David Fisher in the Herald:

Jacinda Ardern will need special police bodyguard protection well beyond the end of her time as Prime Minister even as new figures show the extent of the abuse she faced.

Security and disinformation experts spoken to by the Herald say there would be cause to maintain protection after Ardern steps down and into the future.

It comes as University of Auckland researchers dive into data showing Ardern was the target of consistent abuse and threats well beyond others.

Those researchers pulled posts relating to Ardern and six other bureaucrats and politicians from some of the internet’s less regulated regions – 4Chan, 8kun, Telegram and Reddit – and found 93 per cent of abusive, angry or threatening messages were aimed at the Prime Minister.

The Herald’s own investigation into the online targeting of Ardern has discovered threats of rape and murder, her portrayal as demonic or “evil”, depictions of her as Adolf Hitler and other extreme messaging.

Those include false claims Ardern had broken international law and would be brought to justice – then executed when found guilty.

At least eight people have been charged with threatening to kill the Prime Minister during her term. The Herald is aware of evidence to emerge in other cases showing violent intent towards Ardern, including a video in which her image was repeatedly shot at close range by someone using a silenced rifle with telescopic sights.

Paul Buchanan has this explanation of when the hate started.

Intelligence analyst Dr Paul Buchanan of 36th Parallel Assessments said the events of March 15 and Ardern’s response “galvanised the most retrograde elements of the far right”. “Then the pandemic hit.”

“This is about being young, female and successful. It’s a whole different level of vitriol.”

Remember how the Parliament protest was heavily influenced by far right activists?  Claims that the protest was some sort of peaceful counter culture popular uprising are well wide of the mark.

Ardern herself put a brave face and denied that the attacks were part of the reason for her standing down.  But they must have had an effect.  After all the police dealt with 18 threats of violence against Ardern in 2019, 32 death threats in 2020 and 50 in 2021.  And continuous threats were also made against her partner and her child.  How could this not have affected her or her decision.

Helen Clark and her partner Peter Davis went through not too dissimilar experiences when she was Prime Minister.  Progressive women in charge appear to set some people off.

But my impression was that when Clark was in power the hatred did not have the same intensity.  Helen and Peter were subject to the most awful of allegations but social media at the time was not able to amplify and repeat the attacks the way that it can now.  And she did not have a similar issue to the Christchurch Massacre to deal with.

To those opposing hate speech law reform all that I can say is that this level of hatred and vitriol needs to be managed and regulated and sufficiently bad cases banned.

And to Christopher Luxon your politicising of the issue reinforced my very strong impression that you completely lack the leadership skills that a Prime Minister needs.  John Key would never have replied in the way that you did.

There has to be a better way of doing politics in Aotearoa New Zealand.  To everyone out there, please be kind.

62 comments on “There is no misogyny in New Zealand * ”

  1. Mac1 1

    Today's 'Opinion' by Verity Johnson in The Press is titled "Luxon should have stepped up'.

    A strong condemnation of Luxon's attitude towards misogyny. It starts by saying why she could not vote for him even when dissatisfied with the government.

    It ends "No, he was the guy who knows it's a problem, but doesn't want to admit it is because it's just too difficult. And that is the most disappointing man of all."

    The Opinion can be found here. https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/131042460/verity-johnson-luxon-knew-gendered-abuse-was-a-problem–he-just-didnt-want-to-admit-it

    Worth reading by men for their better understanding.

    As to how Jacinda Adern will be remembered in five years, that is up to history and to our greater realisation as to the individual's responsibility in how we treat our leaders and ourselves.

    A sense of shame would begin the process……

  2. Anne 2

    Paul Buchanan (Pablo) has written a good follow-up article since his public statements on the subject:

    https://www.kiwipolitico.com/2023/01/on-the-darkness-behind-the-pms-departure/

    Its on TS's side-panel but is also appropriate to this post.

  3. Shanreagh 3

    Having seen it, been subjected to sexism at work, worked hard in many spheres to rid my workplace of sexism and misogyny I raise my glass of Tui to the statement

    There is no misogyny in New Zealand

    and say

    Yeah right.

    Now seems to be a good time to work quickly on many fronts to combat this. The work on the definition of hate speech seems to be a bit ponderously moving at the moment.

    What I am thinking is that the agencies that do look at/see/have referred to it instances of misogyny/sexism have their powers and definitions examined to see if they are fit for purpose. Also to see if the sanctions work.

    We should not be afraid to have a big stick in reserve.

    Workplaces, at the very least, need to be places that are free from misogyny/sexism and its equally ugly twin sister, racism. Schools should teach about it.

    It is horribly ironic/saddening that the Chch call was about terrorism and its promulgation on Twitter/SM & here we are seeing misogyny being promulgated on Twitter/SM

  4. Shanreagh 4

    A strong condemnation of Luxon's attitude towards misogyny. It starts by saying why she could not vote for him even when dissatisfied with the government.

    I feel this is but a tip of the iceberg and is of great concern to me. I am positive this blinkered, unseeing view is a product of his upbringing and connection with the patriarchal church he belongs to.

    My concern goes far beyond seeing this as a slip for Luxon, it is fundamental to him.

    • tc 4.1

      His inability to make the distinction on this topic is there for all to see.

      Good luck with the female vote Mr 7 houses…. enlightenment is not his strong suit is it.

  5. Corey Humm 5

    The level of abuse Ardern saw had no precedent in NZ politics.

    It was very very American.

    The Americanization of our politics on both the left and right is a tragedy and will only result in us having less access to our leaders.

    However hate speech reforms won't stop the hate, that's a symptom not the cause, regulating the services where the hate originates is the only thing that will work.

    Govts around the world need to clamp down on big tech and social media rather than on freedom of speech.

    We have 7 billion people all living in digitally curated individualized alternate realities where our prexisiting prejudices and biases are constantly confirmed which is making us angrier and increasingly isolated and radicalizing people n

    Don’t like Ardern and the left? The algorithm will hit you will hundreds of anti Ardern and anti left posts an hour dehumanizing people you disagree with and sending you down rabbit hole after rabbit hole frightening the shit out of you till you now hate and fear Ardern and the left for click revenue.

    don’t like the right? The algorithm will hit you with hundreds of anti right winger posts an hour dehumanizing people you disagree with and putting you down rabbit hole after rabbit hole frightening the shit out of you till you now hate and fear the right for click revenue.

    Big tech needs to be held accountable. They are more of a danger to humanity than the oil barons, the weapons barons the liquor barons and the banking barons combined.

    We are more divided than ever because of big tech.

    It's no surprise people now utterly hate people they disagree with and are genuinely frightened of the other side when corporations algorithms tell us people we disagree with are evil 24/7.

    We can reform hate speech but we must hold the tech Barron's who are burning our society accountable.

    • Descendant Of Smith 5.1

      "don’t like the right? The algorithm will hit you with hundreds of anti right winger posts an hour dehumanizing people you disagree with and putting you down rabbit hole after rabbit hole frightening the shit out of you till you now hate and fear the right for click revenue."

      That hasn't been my experience. Google baby clothes, computer parts, rye biscuits, – within minutes my advertising and suggested sites change to meet these.

      Watch a couple of you-tube videos that have conspiracy crap then youtube suddenly refers you more as it does music likes, gaming topics etc.

      I’ve never once had a referral to an anti-right site. The links on here to other workers and left pages give me more opportunity to read other things than ubiquity.

      Maybe there simply isn't the volume and touch with anti-right sites that you think.

      Not surprising given the admitted biases and the fact that the right tends to have troll factories.

      You are portraying a very false equivalence in my view.

      According to a 27-page research document, Twitter found a “statistically significant difference favouring the political right wing” in all the countries except Germany. Under the research, a value of 0% meant tweets reached the same number of users on the algorithm-tailored timeline as on its chronological counterpart, whereas a value of 100% meant tweets achieved double the reach. On this basis, the most powerful discrepancy between right and left was in Canada (Liberals 43%; Conservatives 167%), followed by the UK (Labour 112%; Conservatives 176%). Even excluding top government officials, the results were similar, the document said.

      https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2021/oct/22/twitter-admits-bias-in-algorithm-for-rightwing-politicians-and-news-outlets

  6. observer 6

    For more details on the reality of misogyny in our politics, there's a collection of articles and analysis here. Required reading for any lingering head-in-the-sand deniers (like the leader of the National party):

    https://twitter.com/suzewilsonnz/status/1616914438740914177

  7. PsyclingLeft.Always 7

    Fark….seeing this now.

    Jacinda Ardern: “I Can’t Think Of Anything That Would Ever Make Me Lose My Hope.”

    https://capsulenz.com/be/jacinda-ardern/

    If she did….I really hope she gets it back. I'm sure her Family (esp Clarke and Neve : ) will absolutely be support central !

    And…this was the link connected me to it …just : (

    ‘When Did Death Threats Become Okay?’ – How Are You Today, Paula Penfold… On The Rise In Hostility Towards Journalists & Public Figures

    https://capsulenz.com/be/paula-penfold/

    .

  8. Stuart Munro 8

    I'm going to suggest that misogyny is not the central issue in the abuse directed at Ardern.

    The abuse is the product of systematic action designed to achieve a specific outcome, either by eroding the confidence of the PM, of the media and the public, or by unleashing unstable individuals to cause mayhem and disruption. We have seen it from Trump, but this use of agent provocateurs is not unique to his organization nor is it confined to it. We really need to look at severely punishing the instigators – the folk behind Counterspin for example – unless we are content that our public institutions shall be overrun by wittering hordes.

    There are quite a few studies of tr0lling that describe the process, The Future of Free Speech, Trolls, Anonymity and Fake News Online | Pew Research Center for example.

    The misogyny is merely the superficial character of the trolling groups. Like religion in the troubles in Ireland, or indeed in Palestine, it was reflected because it was a demarcation line between the disputing communities – but it was not the cause.

    • mpledger 8.1

      I agree – Labour/National have very different voter patterns for men and women. The misogyny was leveraged to draw male voters back to National.

  9. tsmithfield 9

    There is no excuse for that sort of nasty stuff, and the fact the anger was directed specifically at Jacinda was irrational given that the government as a whole was responsible for decisions. So, I sympathise with Jacinda for all the nasty abuse directed personally at her. It certainly was not justified.

    On the other hand though, it seems the goverment intentionally sought to create a division in society over vaccination status. I think the aim was to create an environment where vaccinated people exerted pressure on the unvaccinated to get vaccinated.

    The sad thing for me out of all this is that I think we did end up with a much angrier, divided society out of all this. So, the government may have got what it wanted so far as a high vaccination rate is concerned. But I think the cost has been very high in other respects.

    • PsyclingLeft.Always 9.1

      Absolutely in your opinion of course. And revealing to see what you think. I'll keep that in mind…

      • tsmithfield 9.1.1

        Not in my opinion. That was exactly what was said if you listen to the interview. And more than once from my recollection. It is hard to interpret that interview in any other way.

        I haven't got any anger about it. I am just a bit sad that it went the way it did. I am glad we got the vaccination rates up though. So, it is an issue I feel a bit conflicted about.

        • PsyclingLeft.Always 9.1.1.1

          it seems the goverment intentionally sought

          Thats your opinion. You said it. Conflicted as well?Yeah…sure

          • tsmithfield 9.1.1.1.1

            From the interview:

            Derek: “So you’ve basically said, you probably don’t see it like this, but two different classes of people. If you’re vaccinated or unvaccinated, you have all these rights if you’re vaccinated…”

            Jacinda: “That is what it is.”

            I am fully vaccinated. I didn’t lose my job or anything like that. So, I have no reason to feel angry.

            But someone who lost their job due to their vaccination status may view that interview in a different light.

            As I said, I am more just sad about all the anger and division in society that is spawning the crazy, nasty stuff.

            • weka 9.1.1.1.1.1

              I don't think they intentionally sought division (as in wanted division). I think they were in an incredibly difficult situation with the pandemic response we had committed to (ie thus far low loss of life, low impact on health systems), they were mindful of both the risk to Māori and Pasifika peoples and those groups being less likely to get vaccinated, and with the Delta variant suppressing transmission was very important.

              In other words, it's just as easy to view it that they had solid rationales to chase a high vax rate, had little time to do it in, the mandates were one tool they could use, and the division was a consequence rather than an intention.

              • Cricklewood

                The division was a very foreseeable consequence, although I think the ferocity of the response caught many by surprise. It shouldn't have, if you think back at the messaging that was flowing through the media and how the public at large was responding to rule breakers (Wanaka couple or the Whangarei woman) and the unvaccinated that things reached boiling point.

                If you make the choice to exclude a group from society you cant turn around and expect them to conform to societal norms.

                • weka

                  I suspect that part of the problem was the heavy pro-vax belief system within caucus and their advisors (everyone should be vaccinated trumping human rights to decline medical treatment). The mandates seem to me to have been a necessary evil if we were to protect Māori/Pasifika, and other vulnerable people.

                  What I'm less convinced about is whether the ostracisation was necessary. I've argued that people who lost their livelihood because of the mandates should have been looked after. Otoh the point of the mandates was both to remove unvaccinated people from key positions and to pressure hesitant people to get vaccinated. Looking after people who lost their jobs because of the mandate would have run counter to the latter, and thus counter to the need to get the rates high fast.

                  However, I think that not just the government, but the broader left/liberals were part of creating unnecessary division, we saw it on parliament grounds. I don't get how progressives think that ostracising people will work. It’s one thing to do it short term for a specific important goal, it’s another entirely to do it as a base philosophical position in perpetuity.

              • tsmithfield

                So, I guess that you accept at least that the effect was division.

                Either way, I think it is quite sad it had to be that way. I don't think it was just the loud, loonie fringe either. But I think there was a degree of dissatisfaction and unhappiness about the situation with many, and that grew worse over time.

                As I said, it is a difficult issue because I think the pressure, intentional or otherwise, did result in a lot more getting vaccinated than would have otherwise been the case.

                I also agree that the government was on a hiding to nothing with this. If they didn't take the steps they did, they probably would have copped criticism for a low vaccination rate and higher deaths.

                I am more looking this from the point of view of people who feel their lives were destroyed because of the government rules. I can understand why they might be angry.

                In no way does that justify the abuse hurled at Jacinda though.

                • weka

                  yes I think the government's actions were part of the driver of the division. I don't think it was all on them (I've talked about about progressives and ostracisation), and the Freedom movements people can take responsibility for their side of it too.

                  • tsmithfield

                    Yes, all in all it has been a toxic mix I hope we never have to face as a country again.

                    Probably one thing that would really help is better education about vaccines so people are more accepting of them in the future.

                    • weka

                      unvaccinated people in NZ have historically fallen into three categories:

                      1. people without good access to medical care, often Māori, Pasifika, disabled people, low income people. This can be addressed by increasing services and making services culturally appropriate. This would solve a lot of NZ's problem
                      2. people who make a conscious, informed choice to not vaccinate. Sometimes they don't vaccinate at all, sometimes they make a decision vaccine by vaccine. They are usually committed to health promotion, having the income and/or time to pursue that, and are less likely to be adversely affected by illness. This is a relatively small % of the population that the MoH has generally not bothered with because it will make little difference to spread if disease.
                      3. people who are vaccine hesitant, aren't particularly well informed, just feel incomfortable with the whole idea. The MMR bad science and subsequent rise of the anti-vax movement (coinciding with the arrival of the internets and then later social media) has enlarged this group and some of these people would respond to better education.

                      All three of those groups are now negatively affected by false information and poor science literacy. I don't consider the second group to be inherently ill informed, but increasingly they are being exposed to and influenced by the internet/SM spread of the daft stuff. Which is to say, some people have rational reasons for declining vaccination, most people would choose vaccination if they could be better reached.

                      The covid vax is a another ball game altogether, and I wonder about the choice to go with the mRNA vaccine, simply on pragmatic terms given that choice was going to make more people hesitant.

                    • Shanreagh

                      If we are weighing up what to use short education funds for, I feel the greater need is for literacy in things like scams, how to recognise the thinkers and sayers of 'woo woo'. In the case of the vaccine for Covid 19 those who were able to state and have the statements believed that the vaccines contained magnets, trackers, count down to death timers then 'cures' like ivermectin/bleach purveyors, wellness industry 'go on the this food plan and you won't get Covid'…… and many more. I am not sure this type of critical thought teaching is anywhere in the syllabus. I know we learned it as a spin off through researching and referencing for assignments/essays but that didn't really start until 7th form and first eyar at Uni.

                      We need something as a discrete topic, perhaps as a game at first and with classes and how people would find out truth and or help a friend ……

                      Vaccines could be covered in the health syllabus, if not already.

                      Years ago Consumers Magazine put out a brochure called 'Its your money they're after'. Covering finacne and financial scams.

                      In the case of woo woo from overseas it is

                      'Its your mind they're after'

                      or in health things

                      'Its your life they're after'.

                      Not decrying alternative/complementary medicine.

          • James Simpson 9.1.1.1.2

            How do you interpret that statement then? What is your opinion?

            • tsmithfield 9.1.1.1.2.1

              I think the statement is a little bit unclear as to what Jacinda was referring to when she said "That is what it is" as there are several ideas in the interviewers statement.

              So, it could have been that she was responding to "two different classes of people", "rights if you are vaccinated", or both.

              Which ever way it is looked at though, it does support the proposition that the government was trying to set conditions so there was going to be peer pressure from vaccinated people to pressure unvaccinated to get vaccinated, even though they may not have wanted to. That pressure would be more powerful than the government just telling people to do it. So it didn't surprise me they would do that.

              In fact, several of our workers were in that camp. They ended up getting vaccinated because they were concerned about their jobs, but wouldn't have otherwise got vaccinated.

    • logie97 9.2

      I think the word "division" is used rather too liberally. It gives the impression that half of New Zealand were anti-mandate rather than a very small but vocal minority – who unfortunately were given oxygen by the media to appear to make a divided society.

      The right used that language to say that we were generally a divided nation and that Jacinda Adern and her government were responsible for this schism. If we want to talk about a really divided nation, we should look at 1981, or 1951.

      • Shanreagh 9.2.1

        The right used that language to say that we were generally a divided nation and that Jacinda Adern and her government were responsible for this schism. If we want to talk about a really divided nation, we should look at 1981, or 1951.

        Yes I agree with this compared with the schisms in 1951/81 the vaccination status debate is very much a large majority encountering a small but vocal minority. We risk diving into a fairy story if we dwell too much on it.

        As it seems to be a right construct, not sure why except as a way to get at the Labour govt, we should not buy into this division/schism claim to describe what happened. So tend to agree with Logie97.

        If we do make a story of it then components are missing

        • the Police report about the inflow of funds to support VFF & others
        • reports on just how pervasive the influence of Trump/Maga/far right Churches in the US/ the nutty US element generally. Many of the anti vaxxers were influenced by this type of thing, sadly.
        • tsmithfield 9.2.1.1

          Agree about the vocal minority. But like I said below, I think there was a much larger group with angst at various levels for various reasons.

    • mpledger 9.3

      From a health perspective the mandates were absolutely the right thing. The mandates made the unmotivated get their jab and there were way more of them then the vaccine-opposed. However, it gave a way for the people with very toxic views to rile up the people who were vaccine-opposed and get themselves exposure and a degree of power … for a while. Power and notice is what they crave so they are going to be back, leveraging some other issue.

      • tsmithfield 9.3.1

        I agree with you. I have no problem with the vaccine mandates, and am fully vaxxed myself.

        However, I am very sad about the effect it has had on our society.

      • weka 9.3.2

        good point about the allure of power.

    • Robert Guyton 9.4

      " it seems the goverment intentionally sought to create a division in society over vaccination status. "

      That's plain daft. Care to explore your reckon?

    • Shanreagh 9.5

      On the other hand though, it seems the goverment intentionally sought to create a division in society over vaccination status. I think the aim was to create an environment where vaccinated people exerted pressure on the unvaccinated to get vaccinated.

      I totally and emphatically disagree with this statement.

      It boils down to a choice between conspiracy and cock-up. You are going the conspiracy way. I guess that is fair enough.

      I think if this happened, and it is been written about as if is it 'uge' as Trmup would say, though I have my doubts as to size and enduring impact.

      I have written before about my belief that the Labour Govt in its messaging in many things has grossly over estimated the ability of the electorate of NZ to understand. Remembering the old Comms adage to message to an 11 year old. So cock-up really.

      We are in a me, me, me society and so calls to get vaccinated so as to leave the health sector better placed to deal with those who were less resilient ie to raise the empathy card were lost.

      The idea that some had that they could refuse the vaccine and then become the workplace equivalents of Typhoid Mary needed to be knocked on the head.

      Also not helping the cause for sympathy for those not wanting the vaccine was that a distressing number also did not see the need to observe things like masking. With an airborne virus, non masking most definitely had the potential to cause harm to others.

      The idea I have with 20;20 hindsight is that perhaps the workers who did not want to be vaccinated could have been put on leave without pay, used their sick leave/annual leave and been able to get a benefit plus AS to the same amount as the usual benefit, then come back to work later. Those who have been forced out by redundancy & lost their jobs, though not of of their own making, have had these avenues. Though no job to go back to.

      Anecdotally though, in the workplaces of two friends, PS & Health both have said they were glad to see the unvaxxed go, with the health worker saying their attitudes put everybody at risk. The PS person said the one person who left her immediate workplace was difficult in personality to work with and it had been stressful working with them over the last 10 years. Indeed my friend had several days off on stress leave over the years because of them.

  10. PsyclingLeft.Always 10

    I..am not going to respond to the "division people". ….as I feel its is totally off Mickey Savage's topic..which is Misogyny. I gave honest links relating to 2 Women who have been subjected to serious threats.

    Thats it from me….

    • tsmithfield 10.1

      I think there is value in understanding where all this angst directed at Jacinda has come from. It didn't just arise out of a vacuum. I see this as lessons that can be learned so that in future events this type of anger can be avoided through improved communication.

      So, I don't see it as off topic.

      I think all the nasty, misogynistic stuff is the crazy tip of a much deeper iceberg of people who feel various emotions about the government response, ranging from disatisfaction to fury.

      I think that this, to some degree, explains the government’s slide in the polls and Jacinda’s drop in popularity.

      There were people who got vaccinated because they felt pressured to in order to keep their jobs. Family members of unvaccinated people would have seen them losing their jobs. So, the effect on society was much wider than just the anti-vaxxers.

      So, now we have been through this, it is worth knowing how to prevent this sort of situation arising in the future.

      • Shanreagh 10.1.1

        TS

        Why do you keep calling her Jacinda?

        It is starting to really grate on me, especially when we find that trolls with all sorts of names for her abounded. I think it is rude…Jacinda Ardern surely for the likes or you and me and Jacinda if you know her and are in her company.

        Arguably this matey, matey stuff has had a toxic effect all round and I think we need to pull back with the first name use etc

        I think you were asked why you are doing in another thread yesterday.

        Why

        Please.

        PS and it is linked to misogyny and sexism. As a senior manager I had several experiences when I was introduced to others by by First Name while the men were introduced as First Name Last Name.

  11. psych nurse 11

    I suppose Ryan Bridge, using his logic, feels a bit of rampant homophobia directed at him would be fair game. After all its left wing parties responsible for homosexual law reform in this country.

    • Shanreagh 11.1

      If he thinks being wounded gives him the OK to wound others then he is pretty damaged. That is the way I am looking at it. I have seen it happen though that some of those who have suffered the cruelest of abuse because of something unchanging/immutable go on to be very cruel/bitter towards others who may also suffer or they are utterly unsympathetic.

      I've never taken much notice of him as i thin he would be a contender for my twits list and there are enough of aspirants already. Jordan Petersen though is the only one who has formally made it to the list so far. wink

      • roblogic 11.1.1

        JP is OK when he talks about psychology and Jungian stuff. He's off his rocker when talking politics. Peterson hasn't been the same since coming off BZP.

  12. Ad 12

    The anti Ardern is really intense in Queenstown and Wanaka and Roxburgh in people and shopowners I deal with.

    I never warmed to Ardern but NZ security protection on this scale is a true shame on the extremists.

  13. Thinker 13

    9Yeah but also nah…

    Things always seem rosier the older the memory gets. Can't remember who but I recall the right wing engaging a private detective to follow Helen and Peter around. That's pretty vitriolic.

    Luxon's media responses seem to be patterning into "ready, fire, aim" which Hipkins will hopefully be able to take advantage of.

    I doubt Jacindas read all of the muck spread about her but I imagine she has to be informed of the dangerous stuff, whether she wants to or not, and that would make for a scary world.

    I guess some of the vitriol would come from covid impacted people but things really seemed to get more serious from the antvaxxers.

    Here, I'm going to spout my own opinion without having data to back it up. We see on TV terrorists masquerading as religious leaders. Those of us who aren't Moslem can see how a basically peaceful religion can be used and abused by selective interpretation. It's much harder to see when it's in more familiar religions, but I'm afraid there are so-called Christians who, while not in the class of groups like the taliban, are not afraid to use words as weapons: speak vitriol and then step back and happily watch while those of less cunning take the baton.

    Yes, I think Jacindas been PM in difficult times and yes I totally agree much of the vitriol is mysogenistic. But we need to be careful not to miss a developing trend of increasing violence in the name of all that's good.

    And, of course, it would be a brave person who categorises Helen Clark as 'naive'…

  14. Shanreagh 14

    But we need to be careful not to miss a developing trend of increasing violence in the name of all that's good.

    That is why I am continually saying, well over the last couple of weeks, we need to watch Christopher Luxon (CL) and his religious bent/upbringing. His church, I believe, is one of those patriarchal ones, that abound in the US. I don't want anyone with those sorts of beliefs anywhere near the life I am leading. I think his unknowingness can be either disinterest or it it can be deliberate.

    The SM thing was deliberate, the patriarchy sees itself as being able to deal with what life throws at males and is 'protective' of the things, according to their lights that need to be protected because they are weaker or less skillful. ……. ta dah women.

    And, of course, it would be a brave person who categorises Helen Clark as 'naive'…

    I'll say! Pass.

  15. SPC 15

    The global nature of it from the right is in response to the citing of successful collective action from a "left" wing leader. So of course an alternative narrative was promoted by them to magnify that from locals whose personal and business plans were thwarted.

    The following is what happens when one has partisanship, mixed with end time religious faith (SDA)(end time kingdom come belief in the mass murder of billions of fellow humans) and with some of that old New England/olde England capacity to demonise another individual.

    https://thebfd.co.nz/2023/01/09/the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-reprise/

    • roblogic 15.1

      tl;dr

      First 1000 words: Slater rabbiting on about all the politicians he has hobnobbed with (mostly Nat grifters)

      Second 1000 words: Slater on a hate-filled rant about how Jacinda is evil personified.

      What a sad and nasty little man he is.

      (oh, and ‘Dirty Politics’ gets a mention, but there’s no acknowledgement of his own nefarious deeds. This is a sociopathic loser with a massive chip on his shoulder blaming everyone else except the guy in the mirror)

  16. observer 16

    Another day, another National party staffer reminds us that it's not just a tiny fringe, it's in our biggest opposition party:

    https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2023/01/gerry-brownlee-apologises-to-prime-minister-after-his-account-likes-tweet-calling-jacinda-ardern-tyrant.html

    FWIW I believe Gerry Brownlee here. He didn't post it himself, he's not an idiot, he only employs an idiot.

    But this has happened so often it's no joke. As we learned from the dirty politics saga (Jason Ede and co) the offices of National MPs are barely one degree of separation from the sewer.

  17. That_guy 17

    Redefining the word "women" without the consent of women.. and failing to obtain consent from doubly-marginalised women, like women in prison.. with significant consequences in life and law.. seems a bit misogynist to be honest.

    • Muttonbird 17.1

      The Oxford dictionary shows woman as adult female human being, as does Cambridge. Merriam-Webster says an adult female person, so to Dictionary.com, while Wikipedia describes a woman as an adult female human.

      I am not sure where the redefinition exists in official language but say it did, how would you obtain the consent of women? A global referendum might be possible.

      It's true that women are underrepresented in politics worldwide with only three counties enjoying over 50% female representation, but I still don't see the over representation in politics by men as a driver for a change in definition.

      • That_guy 17.1.1

        If you are "not sure where the redefinition exists in official language" then you haven't been listening to women who have raised many genuine concerns about the Gender self-id Act (already NZ law), and how offensive it is for women that any person can now claim the status of "woman" without the experience of growing up as and being one. Not to mention how downright dangerous this is for women in prison, and disabled women who want sex-specific intimate carers. And that's before we start talking about the insane and completely non-progressive situation where LGB kids are being told in large numbers that there's something wrong with them.

        Labour has nothing to be proud of regarding the rights of woman. Then again, National has even less to be proud of. Just not a good time for progressive values all round really.

        But this may be a bit off-topic so I'll leave it at that.

      • weka 17.1.2

        "Trans women are women" (TWAW) is the basis for allowing a two time (that we know of) rapist in Scotland to self-ID into a women's prison. The reason he was able to do that is because the SNP government passed a self-ID law. Sturgeon has had to backtrack on the rapist in prison this week, but has thus far not explained how this isn't a result of the law she just passed.

        Is that official enough for you? TWAW means that any man who says he is a woman is a women. Self-ID (now backed by legislation in multiple countries) means that any man at any time can say they are a woman and must be treated as one.

        In medicine, women's language is now routinely replaced with gender neutral language, or offensive new language so we are increasingly not allowed even the words to talk about our own bodies. The first real peaking for me came a number of years ago listening to a woman describe how she and other women were thrown out of a FB support group for a medical condition that particularly affects women because women were using vernacular such as 'lady parts'. This was objected to on the basis that it was prejudicial against any trans women in the group.

        Try going onto liberal social media and saying women = adult human female. I've had progressive men on this site tell me to not use the word woman to mean that.

        On and on. This has been discussed at length on TS, and I know you've seen some of that discussion so I am surprised to see you running this very ignorant argument here.

        • Drowsy M. Kram 17.1.2.1

          Is that official enough for you? TWAW means that any man who says he is a woman is a women. Self-ID (now backed by legislation in multiple countries) means that any man at any time can say they are a woman and must be treated as one.

          And TMAM? Is it that simple?

          Scottish government hails ‘historic day’ as MSPs pass gender recognition bill [22 December 2022]

          The gender recognition reform (Scotland) bill removes the need for a psychiatric diagnosis of gender dysphoria in order to obtain a gender recognition certificate (GRC), and extends the application process to 16- and 17-year-olds for the first time.

          Scotland’s new self-identification system will also reduce the time someone must have been permanently living in their acquired gender before they can apply – from two years to three months, or six months for those aged 16 and 17 – with a three-month reflection period during which an individual can change their mind.

          She [Shona Robison] told MSPs: “Trans rights are not in competition with women’s rights and, as so often before, we can improve things for everyone when those discriminated against act as allies not opponents.

          There's "an increasingly toxic and polarised political [and public] discourse" – “shame on you”; “this is the darkest day”. And so it may prove, although where 'trans rights', under an established (much) larger umbrella of human rights, end up 20 years from now is literally beyond me. One thing's for sure – as the trans community grows, diversifies and becomes more visible, some hearts will harden.

          https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/10/science/transgender-teenagers-national-survey.html

          https://theconversation.com/whats-behind-the-rising-profile-of-transgender-kids-3-essential-reads-161962

          https://time.com/transgender-men-sexism/

          • weka 17.1.2.1.1

            sex is dimorphic and binary, but sexism isn't symmetrical. Which is why TMAM isn't nearly as big a problem as TWAM (although it's becoming more of an issue for gay men expected to sleep with females).

            But sure, if a woman says they are a man they're supposed to be treated as such. Funnily enough, it's harder for TM to assert their rights in this regard than TW. I wonder why, it's almost like biological sex has political and social meaning and sexism is based on sex more than gender identity.

            There was a period of time when leftie/progressive gender critical feminists were willing to work with trans people and resolve the conflict of rights. Sit down and sort it out. This was majorly rejected by gender activists and allies and I think that window is well and truly passed. In places like the US and the UK where there is a move towards the right politically and socially, I fear that trans people will do badly if those countries tip further. So many GC people (not GCFs) just don't give a shit trans people when it comes down to it.

            Some of that is transphobic, some of it is defence. Many GC women are extremely fucked off at the abuse and misogyny and loss of rights, feel they've been backed into a corner, and are coming out fighting. There are centrist women willing to work with the right but who are largely naive or ignorant about the issues of rising fascism. The left think they can force those people into thinking like the left, but they can't.

            Fortunately in places like the UK and NZ, if you put aside TWAW and self-ID, the human rights of trans people are pretty solidly in place and supported across the population. In other words, the right to not be discriminated against on the basis of gender identity is widely supported, the right for TW to be treated as women literally definitely isn't.

            • Drowsy M. Kram 17.1.2.1.1.1

              Agreed, sex in humans is virtually entirely dimorphic/binary; a genetic trait which influences but does not necessarily determine gender identity.

              In the longer term it may become easier for those in the minority trans community to more fully adopt gender identities that match their true sense of self, and to change identities as required. A few people will abuse such freedoms/rights (and so legal, law enforcement and other safeguards are required), but hopefully less visceral and more considered and accepting attitudes towards (normal) transpeople will voluntarily become the norm.

              Why Sex Is Mostly Binary but Gender Is a Spectrum
              [15 December 2016]
              The hierarchical organization of this genetic cascade illustrates a crucial principle about the link between genes and environments in general. The perennial debate rages on: nature or nurture, genes or environment? The battle has gone on for so long, and with such animosity, that both sides have capitulated. Identity, we are now told, is determined by nature and nurture, genes and environment, intrinsic and extrinsic inputs. But this too is nonsense—an armistice between fools. If genes that govern gender identity are hierarchically organized—starting with SRY on top and then fanning out into thousands of rivulets of information below—then whether nature predominates or nurture is not absolute, but depends quite acutely on the level of organization one chooses to examine.

              At the top of the cascade, nature works forcefully and unilaterally. Up top, gender is quite simple—just one master gene flicking on and off. If we learned to toggle that switch—by genetic means or with a drug—we could control the production of men or women, and they would emerge with male versus female identity (and even large parts of anatomy) quite intact. At the bottom of the network, in contrast, a purely genetic view fails to perform; it does not provide a particularly sophisticated understanding of gender or its identity. Here, in the estuarine plains of crisscrossing information, history, society, and culture collide and intersect with genetics, like tides. Some waves cancel each other, while others reinforce each other. No force is particularly strong—but their combined effect produces the unique and rippled landscape that we call an individual’s identity.

          • That_guy 17.1.2.1.2

            Given that a man who brutally raped two women in Scotland has self-id'd his way into a women's prison.. you know, the thing that everybody said wouldn't happen?.. which forced Nicola Sturgeon into an embarrassing u-turn.. then putting up Scotland as an example of the wonderfulness that happens when gender self-id laws are put into practice is… well… bold. Let's go with bold.

            It's also further proof of two things: you are not listening to women, and you are not listening to the other side of the debate. This is usually because you've been convinced that the other side of the debate is exclusively populated by fascist nazis. It's not.

            Stealing a quote here, but why are women expected to provide an overwhelming amount of evidence that self-id is a risk to their rights and safety, but nobody seems to be asking for evidence that men can become women?

            Edit: Snap, weka is on it.

      • weka 17.1.3

        I am not sure where the redefinition exists in official language but say it did, how would you obtain the consent of women? A global referendum might be possible.

        It's really simple. Let women speak. No Debate is an intentional, well funded and promoted strategy that has stopped many women from speaking, and those that do face social censure, ostracisation, job and career loss. Most women in NZ don't know what the issues are. In the UK it's a big different because there was a grass roots feminist movement that insisted on the debate and that movement included women MPs, lawyers, academics and others who had the societal power to stop the debate being shut down. Many of those women have faced some of the worst misogynistic abuse I have seen in 50 years.

        It's true that women are underrepresented in politics worldwide with only three counties enjoying over 50% female representation, but I still don't see the over representation in politics by men as a driver for a change in definition.

        Gender ideology is a complex phenomenon, with multiple drivers. But men's role in this is clear. Liberal men have sided with genderists against women and so when the pushes have some to change language, women have had to fight on two fronts.

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    5 days ago
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    5 days ago
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  • Casey Costello strikes again
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    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #28 2024
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    6 days ago
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    6 days ago
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    6 days ago
  • Farmers’ revenge meets Green resistance
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    6 days ago
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    6 days ago
  • Oh Vienna
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  • Geoffrey Miller: New Zealand forges deeper ties with NATO
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  • Climate Change: National’s carbon capture fantasy
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    6 days ago
  • Harsh Truths.
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  • Explainer: Simeon Brown's CCUS Announcement
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    6 days ago
  • The Kiwirail Interislander saga continues
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    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Bernard’s Chorus for Wednesday, July 10
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    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Christopher Luxon's business acumen
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    7 days ago
  • Meet New Zealand's Russell Brand?
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  • Why is the Government flooring it on unsafe speeds?
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  • American Boy
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    7 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 10
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    7 days ago
  • How rural families are saving thousands with electric vehicles
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  • Love to complete it all
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    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What’s left of the Emissions Reduction Plan?
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    1 week ago

  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki
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    8 hours ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits
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    14 hours ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston
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    15 hours ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety
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    16 hours ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship
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    1 day ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality
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  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy
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  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants
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  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California
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  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO
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  • District Court judges appointed
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    4 days ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins
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    5 days ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended
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  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance
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  • Taking action to reduce road cones
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  • Celebrating 100 years of progress
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  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan
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  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open
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  • Decreasing gas reserves data highlights need to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
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  • Providers of military assistance to Russia targeted in new sanctions
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  • OECD report shows New Zealand is a red tape state
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  • $25 million boost for conservation
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  • New Zealand increases support for Ukraine
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  • Country Kindy to remain open
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  • Government lifts Indonesian trade cooperation
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  • Revision programme presented to Parliament
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  • Minister thanks outgoing Secretary for Education
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  • Minister concludes local government review
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  • Upgrading system resulting in faster passport processing
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