Monday, April 11, 2011

ZenTiger Wall to wall white males versus a gaggle of gays

In the 1950s and 1960s and even into the 1970s when it siphoned many wage-workers off Labour National proclaimed itself, with cause, the national party. Labour, it said, was captive to the unions and therefore sectional.

Now it is National which looks sectional: wall to wall white. Last year, out of 600 conference delegates, only about 15 were non-white.

Labour's conference, by contrast, is a United Nations of colour and ethnicity. Women and gays are there in numbers and influence. It even has space nowadays for out-of-the-closet, practising Christians.


--Colin James, on Labour and National, 2008.

Well, Labour still has its unionists and gaggle of gays, according to one of its less diverse members, Damian O'Connor.

The LGBT Community has apparently taken great offense this description. Yet we seem inured to phrases such as "wall to wall whites" and National being described as a party full of middle aged white men, or ... if O'Connor and Nash want to go to a party where they get treated better - there's always National. That's full of white honky males in suits..

Is the gay comment is any worse than the disdain shown for wall to wall white National politicians? Probably not, but Damian will be required to apologise for his bigotry. The concept "unified front" doesn't seem to figure in Labour politics at this time, and that's what the leader needs to lead on. Getting apologies just continues the theme of in-fighting and the very public establishment of the pecking order. Idiots.

It seems to me, that even though the difference between Labour and National, in terms of policy is very little, Labour continue to define themselves by playing to the minorities and using identity politics to define their brand.

It's obviously not working, and assuming they lose the next election, that might be the kind of shock that makes them decide to lurch further to the left.

If the economy continues to shed jobs, and industry continues to move offshore, they might find themselves relevant again. National could be painted evil for not spending as much, or taxing as much as Labour think they need to, to get the economy back on its feet.

Oh, NZ, I despair.


Pinko Free Zone - On Unionists and Gaggles

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