Wednesday, June 22, 2005

New Blogs

That's right, we need more blogs in our lives...

First up is cheezy, a friend of a friend currently residing in the UK. While he isn't exactly a fawning sycophant when it comes to Labour, he has just posted a very good article on why a National government would be a very, very bad idea.

He makes the very good point in his rather lengthy post about the fact that a Don Brash led National government would in all likelyhood have participated in the illegal, and strategically disastrous Iraq war. When it comes down to it, questions about war and morality are the true litmus test of political leadership, and a National government would have shown it's true colours by cravenly sending our troops to follow the USA into that quamire.

Labour MP Tim Barnett has also decided to risk life and limb by entering the blogosphere. Tim has attracted some of the most vicious personal attacks you will ever see in the political world for holding a range of progressive views, but he continues to coherently argue for what he believes is right. For that he has my uptmost admiration.

14 comments:

Too Right said...

On your analysis Helen Clark completely fails the leadership litmus test - on every count. She, alone of Western democracies has assiduously dismembered any war fighting capability the New Zealand armed forces once had. Then to finally kill any chance New Zealand has of self defence she effectively trashes the alliances we have with the US and Australia. We should rename her Helen Chamberlain - he also fooled himself he was in command in a benign security environment.

Too Right said...

Michael - democracy is breaking out across the Middle East - I think the enemy of peace is actually the undemocratics. Begrudgingly you should acknowledge that Condy Rice, has said the US stands for democracy not containment. You need to catch up. The thugs are the Iranian theocrats and the Syrian secret service. Democratisation has happened because the US took out Saddam. We are all safer because of it (though we cannot defend ourselves now if we have to). Finally I guess, that with your broad knowledge of foreign affairs you noted that half the insurgents recently captured in Iraq are Saudi.

Anonymous said...

Oh dear - this is laughable. There is more to democracy than contrived elections. It helps if the system has legitimacy. Iraq's democracy doesn't. The state is not even close to full national acceptance and control.

Basically the boundaries drawn by the West are in the wrong place.

And why do some people want New Zealand to have a war-fighting capacity just for the honour of losing anything serious?

Too Right said...

I agree, Michael is laughable - I was referring to elections in Lebanon and the UAE.

Labour has shown its colours by cravenly signing a blank cheque for the Kyoto quagmire.

The reason we need a war fighting capability? So we don't "freeload on other countries"...if the "benign strategic security environment" gets a little less benign...to paraphrase Dear Leader.

Anonymous said...

Getting a bit silly there, Too Right.

The STRATEGIC security environment is benign - and because the Chinese, for instance, respect this country and its foreign policy independence and integrity, it is more benign still....

..a terrorism threat, to the smaller extent than Australia, Britain, and the United States that New Zealand faces one, again because of its policy on Iraq and other matters - why is that that some people think terrorists are neanderthals who don't do political analysis and don't distinguish between us and Australia? - is not the stuff of strategic security environments.

I hope that the election is fought on foreign and defence policy. Labour would win hands down.

Too Right said...

The election will be fought on tax and personal freedom. The electorate are saying WIIFM, our kid's education is the subject of a rude social engineering joke, your health funding has not improved access or outcomes, crims are out living free and we need 1000 extra police and someone to answer 111.

Anonymous said...

Too right is on the button regarding Democracy in the Middle East. Kuwait has recently granted women the right to vote , while Egypt, whilse still under the thumb of Mubarak is moving toward a more pluralist system.

Makes a change from the old system still supported by the left whereby only Israel stood as an outpost of democracy in the region.

Anonymous said...

Ha-ha - what about American support of decidedly non-democratic regimes when it suited them in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Iraq (under Saddam), Iran (under the Shah), you name it here, you name it there, etc, etc...and all very conscientiously resisted by the left and supported by the right...

Too Right said...

And now the Left are the intransigent ones. At least the US Administration has admitted the error of the past ways and propose change. Funny how the Left cannot bring themselves to admit that maybe, just maybe, fundamental change for good is underway in the Middle East. Of course that means admitting that perhaps the Palestinians have overplayed their hand for like 20 years. And as a committed democracy for like 50 years Israel, it has a legimate place and role. The Left know that as democracy takes root the beneficiaries historically reject the autocracy inherent in Left wing policy and go for individual freedom and a minimalist State. They know what it is like to have an overbearing Government and relish the opportunity to do their own thing. Vive la Revolution!

Anonymous said...

Try to tell any Latin American about a supposed lack of autocracy in right-wing regimes and you'll get a splutter....your mistake is to think that the right acts in the interest of the principles of individual freedom and free enterprise when in fact it acts in the established interests of private enterprise....

Too Right said...

And private enterprise is by definition the engine room of political economy. Government's destroy wealth. Redistributing income/wealth doesn't create more of it. Just speads what you have more thinly. If you pardon a couple of cliches:
Teach a man to fish has a sustainable outcome and independence; give him fish consigns you both to dependence. And so it is with redistribution. In the end the horse you keep flogging falls dead; all the beneficiaries stare at it in utter bewilderment - thinking WTF now, you never told me it would die.

Private enterprise, thrift, minimalist government is not a right wing autocracy. It is a good way to govern and has the advantage that the power is literally with the people. What you are referring to in Latin America is probably fascism - Left or Right, WTF; same outcome for those not in the A Team.

Talk to people in Poland, Estonia and Czech Republic. They know the difference. They love a flat tax becuase they can see it at work. Tax take up, government services in place, people feeling and getting wealthier.

Anonymous said...

We do teach people to fish. It's called a very good state education system. The vast majority of people in New Zealand do fish for themselves. The vast majority of beneficiaries have fished for themselves before and will do so again in the future. They do not represent a static army unchanging in its composition.
And as for the right's favoured welfare bribe theory - the Labour vote amongst beneficiaries at the last election was 46%: given Labour's overall vote of 41%, hardly an electoral bonanza!

michael wood said...

Well you can bleat on about the value of democracy and the rule of law, but at the same time you are supporting the invasion by one weak country by another strong country, in contravention of the rule of law and the democratic judgement of most other countries in the UN.

That's an international precedent that I do not support, and Helen Clark was absolutely right to take a firm independent line against the war.

Seth said...

Hi Too Right, I think you ought to move to the USA - you could no doubt get a job on the Bush team, and the good news is that no matter how grossly incompetent you are, so long as you lick the boots of the right neocons, you simply cannot lose that job. The pay's great and if the US public ever manages to get a free vote again there's always a great job waiting in a republican run corporation! I wish you well in your new career...