It’s official – I’m 7 19ths conservative

Auckland businessman and former Mayoral candidate Colin Craig has launched a new party, the Conservative Party of New Zealand. It’s proto-website has a questionnaire to assist voters in deciding if the Conservative Party is for them.

I took the test.  Given that I score Economic Left/Right: -9.12 – Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -7.54 on the political compass, the result of the Conservative Party’s test surprised me.  I am 7/19ths conservative.  These are the questions that I answered in a supposedly conservative manner:

Traditions and heritage are of real value. Change to alliances, laws and society should only be done after careful consideration and with the support of the people.

I agree.  But I suspect Colin Craig is really meaning only patriarchal, white, capitalist, Christian traditions and heritage; rather than the traditions and heritage of the many ethnic groups and religions who make up New Zealand society that I was thinking of.

Community and family are the backbone of a fair and decent society. Government should support communities and families.

This looks more like a Green value than a Conservative one.  One of the traits of conservative parties worldwide is the cutting of Government support to communities and families.  But if Colin Craig decides to reject the Welfare Working Group recommendations and support the Green End Child Poverty policy announced yesterday, then good on him.  Somehow I doubt it though.

Long Term Thinking is essential. The decisions that we take and the things that we do become the inheritance of the next generation. It is important to look at the long term consequences of our actions so that we leave the land a better place than we found it.

This is another one that is more of a Green value than a Conservative one.  Conservatives just want to keep on doing whatever they have always been doing as long as it brings short term economic gain.  Planning for future generations terrifies them, because it means they have to change long-established practices.

That the 2014 election referendum should include the following questions : Should New Zealand adopt a 4 year parliamentary Term

NZ is unusual in the world for the brevity of its Parliamentary term.  A 4 year term would arguably give voters the opportunity to better assess whether Government policies are working or not, and would reduce the need for Parliamentary urgency.

That the sale of State Assets does not proceed

Well, that’s a no-brainer.  If Conservatives agree that state assets should not be sold, it shows the extent of the radical right’s influence on National’s asset sales agenda.

Early and significant action in cases of minor crime including restoration activity with a follow up program.

Again, something that’s sensible and comes straight out of Green policy.  Unfortunately, the previous question in the Conservative Party’s test supports prison labour and “life means life” for violent criminals – somewhat of a contradiction.

That a royal commission investigate family breakdown and the growing child abuse problem and provide recommendations on what can be done to improve family life, stability and child welfare.

This would be a far more effective approach than Paula Bennett’s Green Paper, which is little more than a propaganda exercise to try to convince voters the Government is doing something about child abuse and child poverty when it is not.

The rest of the Conservative test is riddled with reactionary stuff promoting repealing the Emissions Trading Scheme, legalising hitting children, reintroducing workfare, and returning the foreshore and seabed to Crown ownership.

So I’ll still be voting Green, not Conservative.  I do wish Colin Craig all the best if he contests the Epsom electorate against John Banks and his hagiographer though.

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4 thoughts on “It’s official – I’m 7 19ths conservative

  1. Why is ‘no sale of state assets’ a no-brainer? I think you agree that ‘of course they should be held on to’. But, in fact, the arguments for keeping these assets while in a large state of debt is rather weak…What’s the point of holding on to assets while paying big interest on national debt?
    Wise people don’t have huge loans while also having money in the bank. They minimise debt before worrying about assets. Retiring debt (via capital gained through asset sales) is the national equivalent.
    Your no-brainer’ comment is presumably a knee-jerk response to the idea that we shouldn’t ‘lose something good’ (like the old cliche ‘don’t sell the family silver’). But every day we pay interest on debt that we don’t have to have, and that expense is generally bigger than any profits SOE’s provide..
    If the country ever gets into surplus, national assets can always be re-obtained. (Although, carefully: in places like the UK in the 70’s this policy – called nationalisation – proved a bit of a disaster…)

  2. @Peter 10:20 am

    The dividends the Government receives from the state assets proposed to be partially privatised are greater than the interest on the debt that will be retired by selling them. That’s why it is a no-brainer.

  3. Further, a ‘conservative’ definition of family tends to be a married hetrosexual couple and their kids, with little scope for blended families, same-sex families, ‘step’families, etc. Like most ‘polls’ the definition of terms is subjective, and in this family questions most would probably agree – until the nuclear definition is applied to the excusion of others.

    But why does toad consider partial sales of state assets a no brainer. When the pot is only so big, it is logiocal to use that money whewre it would be best spent, and tying it up in concrete is not socially reponsible. Only people who think they can just ‘soak the rich’ for more to fund their own desires/morality think that money is printed by faires at the botom of the garden.

    But I’ll not be voting Conservative on the basis of this, either (and I scored nine)

  4. Interesting demonstration of the confusion reigning in Epsom, really, Toad, isn’t it?

    For one of the former backers of the local electorate war-chest to stand for himself, must be a complete slap in the face for those running both the ACT and National electorate campaigns, surely?

    Also goes to show that, as Misanthrope has pointed out, ‘family’ means different things to different people, and in this context there is definitely a huge dog-whistle to conservative, wealthy Auckland families who have residence of some 8 generations standing or so – not just rich, white and heterosexual, but also: ‘We were HERE FIRST, and you johnny-come-latelies will jolly well pay attention to what we have carefully nurtured over the past 150 years or so, namely our position at the top of the heap.’

    Diversity is a rude word because it might require the urban squatocracy to relinquish some of their power to those who do not currently partake of the dynastic hegemony.

    Meanwhile, How’s that David Hay doing?
    Seen some great shots of farmer’s market Green stalls and so on a while ago, I expect that kind of thing is still going on but you wouldn’t know it from the media coverage! 😉

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