Rereading the UN Compact on Migration

To listen to some of the more overblown rhetoric this week, you’d could only conclude that the speakers/writers thought that anyone opposed to the UN Compact on Migration –  signed late last year by many countries, including New Zealand, but boycotted by another 29 (including 9 EU countries, the US, and Australia) –  was at least indirectly responsible for Brenton Tarrant’s¹ [alleged] act of evil last Friday.

Most directly in their sights, so it seemed, was the National Party which (rather belatedly) opposed the Compact, promised to withdraw from it if/when returned to government, and had been running a petition of some sort opposed to it.  National didn’t help themselves by, whether through incompetence or something worse, initially giving erroneous stories about when the petition had been taken down.  Straight after the shootings appeared to be the final story.  As if they were now embarrassed by their previous stance – or simply anticipated the deranged rhetoric of the last few days.

I went back and reread the UN Compact this morning.   I came away with much the same view as I’d taken in December.   The document is unnecessary (as, largely, is the United Nations), statist, strongly pro-immigration….and it is a little chilling in a few places.  More than enough reason not to sign it –  the world is, after all, awash with largely meaningless resolutions, including from the United Nations, and that shouldn’t be encouraged.  But as I noted in my single post back then, I hadn’t written anything about it previously

as not only was it a non-binding political declaration, but most of it seemed more relevant to countries dealing with substantial illegal migration (and with migration mainly from very poor or disrupted countries – again, not the main situation in New Zealand).

I was, and remain, more than a little suspicious of National’s belated commitment to the issue.

My suspicion remains that National’s stance is more about positioning relative to New Zealand First –  the contest for provincial votes –  than anything of substance.

But perhaps I’m being unfair to them.

What follows is the heart of my earlier post, without blockquoting it all.

But it still isn’t clear to me quite what additional damage would be done by signing up to this pointless agreement.   Sure, even “non-binding” agreements will, at times, be used in domestic and international fora as a rhetorical stick to beat governments with if they ever look like stepping out of line with the mainstream.  But those sorts of arguments rarely deflect a government for long if it has domestic public opinion behind it in some direction or another (for good or ill).

There is some questionable economics in the document.  For example

Promote effective skills matching in the national economy by involving local authorities and other relevant stakeholders, particularly the private sector and trade unions, in the analysis of the local labour market, identification of skills gaps, definition of required skills profiles, and evaluation of the efficacy of labour migration policies, in order to ensure market responsive contractual labour mobility through regular pathways.

Or, alternatively, one could just let the market work it out.  When there are incipient skill shortages, wage rates tend to rise.  Same thing happens when, for example, bad weather creates a shortage of spinach or lettuce.    But, daft as the economics is, this stuff is the mindset of politicians and officials adminstering immigration schemes all over the western world. including New Zealand.  Recall that in New Zealand the current government is trying to get more actively involved in this sort of thing.

There are also totally vacuous bits, like the commitment to support and promote the United Nations International Day of Family Remittances.  Just what the world needs: another United Nations “day”.

Perhaps three clauses troubled me a little more.

There was this one

Enable political participation and engagement of migrants in their countries of origin, including in peace and reconciliation processes, in elections and political reforms, such as by establishing voting registries for citizens abroad, and by parliamentary representation, in accordance with national legislation.

I guess I can see what they are probably driving at (diasporas helping the reconstruction of the country of origin after say a protracted civil war). But, normally, we should expect migrants to commit themselves to their new country and its processes and political values and not be creating doubts about where their loyalties lie.  But in a country in which Jian Yang and Raymond Huo are MPs –  while still closely associating themselves with political interests in their country of origin –  and people like Yikun Zhang appears encouraged to play both sides –  it is hard to see how this particular provisions make things here any worse than they already are (around a small handful of our migrants).

And then there was this one

Promote mutual respect for the cultures, traditions and customs of communities of destination and of migrants by exchanging and implementing best practices on integration policies, programmes and activities, including on ways to promote acceptance of diversity and facilitate social cohesion and inclusion.

Which presents the issues as symmetric when they really should be asymmetric: the focus should be on encouraging the assimilation of the migrants, and ensuring their respect for the “cultures, traditions and customs” of the destination community –  just as when you go to someone else’s place for dinner you respect their practices, table manners etc.   One could also argue that encouraging “acceptance of diversity” and facilitating “social cohesion” are two contradictory, often mutually inconsistent, goals.  But again, flakey as all this stuff is, it is the way our bureaucratic and political “leaders” think and act anyway.  If the behaviour is a threat, it is hard to see that the UN agreement would be more of one.

Relatedly

Support multicultural activities through sports, music, arts, culinary festivals, volunteering and other social events that will facilitate mutual understanding and appreciation of migrant cultures and those of destination communities.

Quite what business this is of the UN –  or even of national governments actually – one has to wonder, but there is the “globalist” mindset for you.   And, again, it is pretty much what central and local governments do anyway.  I was interested that “religion” wasn’t on the list

And then, of course, there is Objective 17 (of the 23 in the document) which I have seen people express more serious concern about.

OBJECTIVE 17: Eliminate all forms of discrimination and promote evidence-based public discourse to shape perceptions of migration

We commit to eliminate all forms of discrimination, condemn and counter expressions, acts and manifestations of racism, racial discrimination, violence, xenophobia and related intolerance against all migrants in conformity with international human rights law. We further commit to promote an open and evidence-based public discourse on migration and migrants in partnership with all parts of society, that generates a more realistic, humane and constructive perception in this regard. We also commit to protect freedom of expression in accordance with international law, recognizing that an open and free debate contributes to a comprehensive understanding of all aspects of migration.

If that isn’t muddled I don’t know what is –  let alone, unrealistic (in no conceivable world are “all forms of discrimination” going to be “eliminated”).

The specifics under that Objective include commitments to

Enact, implement or maintain legislation that penalizes hate crimes and aggravated hate crimes

So-called “hate crime” legislation is almost always bad law and bad policy.  Punish assaults or murders or whatever as that: bad and unacceptable acts, regardless of who they are committed against or why.

And this

Promote independent, objective and quality reporting of media outlets, including internet based information, including by sensitizing and educating media professionals on migration-related issues and terminology, investing in ethical reporting standards and advertising, and stopping allocation of public funding or material support to media outlets that systematically promote intolerance, xenophobia, racism and other forms of discrimination towards migrants, in full respect for the freedom of the media.

Again, muddled at best.  You want to stop any public funding to outlets whose views are “unacceptable”, while having “full respect for the freedom of the media”.   Since I’m not entirely convinced there is a good case for public funding of any media outlets –  and since the publicly-funded outlets in New Zealand are champions of high immigration and all “worthy” leftist causes anyway –  it isn’t clear what difference this might make in New Zealand.    And there seem to be some MPs –  particularly in Labour and the Greens –  who aren’t too keen on allowing free speech on such issues anyway, whether or not we sign up to UN non-binding declarations.

And finally under Objective 17

Engage migrants, political, religious and community leaders, as well as educators and service providers to detect and prevent incidences of intolerance, racism, xenophobia, and other forms of discrimination against migrants and diasporas and support activities in local communities to promote mutual respect, including in the context of electoral campaigns.

All very asymmetric –  nothing at all about engaging with communities that might be uneasy about high immigration, or the immigration of groups with values antithetical to those of the destination community.  Perhaps, in some respects, this commitment troubles me more than most.   “Intolerance” is not an offence (in principle or in law) and it is the perfect right of people to debate –  perhaps especially in election campaigns – the future composition of their society.   A Saudi Wahhabi, a Chinese Communist Party zealot, an American evangelical, and a French secularist are all very different sorts of people. In large numbers, each group transplanted to (say) New Zealand would make a material difference to the society and polity we have here.  Those debates matter –  unless, apparently like the authors of this document –  you regard all differences of culture, politics, religion etc as superficial rather than fundamental.

March 2019 here again.

Rereading that, it still seems about right (and in fact we’ve had chilling signs of the antipathy to free speech from a number of quarters this week).

In their opposition to the compact, National repeatedly asserted that our sovereignty was going to be compromised.  I never quite saw them explain how.   But at the time of the earlier post, some people who were more negative than I was on the document highlighted a risk that –  although the agreement is formally non-binding on governments – our local courts could, or would, over time seek to introduce the provisions of the agreement (and the fact of it) into judicial rulings on immigration issues in New Zealand.   Such judicial conduct is not unknown.  Perhaps that was some of what National had in mind.

I’m not a lawyer, so am not sure how significant a risk that is.  But I guess at the time my response had a number of strands:

  • parliamentary sovereignty is still intact in New Zealand.  Even if it is bad form to legislate retrospectively (re a specific case) there is never anything to stop Parliament legislating to, in effect, counter any tendencies of judges to import non-statutory documents of this sort into their decisionmaking,
  • more substantial and important questions probably should be asked about how we appoint – and who we appoint –  as top tier judges in New Zealand.   These are, inevitably and sadly, somewhat political roles –  not party political so much, as “ideological”.  I had a post last week suggesting a more open process for scrutinising and confirming senior judicial appointments (as well as term limits).    That still seems a higher longer-term priority than a single non-binding UN document, even one with somewhat chilling language in a few areas.

And the third strand –  decisive to me –  was this, with which I concluded December’s post

As I said at the start, there is no obvious need for this document.  And even if there were obvious gaps, the very fact that it is a non-binding political declaration suggests it could meet no substantive need.  But in a New Zealand context, there are policies and practices around immigration that are much more damaging and threatening, particularly to our long-term economic performance, and perhaps in other areas too.  Among them:

  • the immigration policies of the National Party
  • the immigration policies of the Labour Party
  • the immigration policies of the Green Party
  • the immigration policies of ACT, and
  • the immigration policies of New Zealand First

I think that pretty much covers the spectrum.

There is no conceivable universe in which some international declaration –  or even agreement – around immigration would be more liberal and (in our specific economic circumstances) more damaging than what our political parties have done to us all by themselves.

And since Simon Bridges was asserting the other day

“If you look at our immigration position, I think we have the strongest pro-migration position across the Parliament.”

I think you’ll see my point.  As it is, I’m pretty sure he is wrong in his claim. ACT and the Greens, from apparently opposite ends of the political spectrum, beat him to the title.

But to suggest that National should be whipping themselves, or ashamed of their stance on the Compact, is just absurd –  and worse.  (Their ongoing support for our high immigration policies is another matter).  It is, like so many areas of public policy, something around which reasonable people will differ, perhaps quite strongly.  That is the stuff of politics, and indeed of life –  perhaps the more so, the more diverse (ideologically, religiously or the like) your society is.  Ideas matter.  Even non-binding declarations are championed for a reason –  so much energy wouldn’t be expended on them otherwise.  It is reasonable, perhaps, to pose the question to the champions –  or even those more indifferent –  “if it is so inocuous, what’s the point?  Why does it matter so much to you?”

 

  1. I won’t be following the Prime Minister’s stance of not mentioning the name of the [alleged] killer (nor, I presume, will our courts).   I thought this op-ed from the Jerusalem Post dealt with that issue well.   We think no better of Hitler or James Earl Ray or Sirhan Sirhan for mentioning them, and their acts of evil, by name.   More specifically, I’m a Christian and our faith teaches that no one is beyond the possibility of God’s grace. Those are hard words to hear, and at a civil level I’d be quite content if we’d had the death penalty in place.  But vile as the acts were, Tarrant was –  and is – a human being.  And, as Solzhenitsyn sagely put it, the line between good and evil runs not between people or states, but through every human heart.

32 thoughts on “Rereading the UN Compact on Migration

  1. I find the non-binding aspect rather disingenuous as they obviously hope that there will be some sort of ‘moral
    obligation’ and that it will become a whipping point for other parties. The crazy thing is that from the reaction from NZ First seems to indicate that they had little idea of what the reaction from the public would be and instead of changing their mind they just stick to that line. It has without doubt done them great harm.

    Liked by 3 people

      • No, Jacinda Ardern has already bribed Winston Peters and Shane Jones with a $3 Billion cash bribe which they can spend on their mates without Treasury checks and audits. This must be one of the most corrupt Labour/ Greens/NZfirst government we have ever had in NZ.

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  2. I’m not using his name but on Friday I searched for it just to make sure it wasn’t “Bob”. Rationally total superstition but it was heartfelt. I expect to see his name used where appropriate as it was in the Herald either today or yesterday.

    I expect at his trial his defence will be similar to Anders Breivik’s. I have no problem with that just as I had no issue with Clayton Weatherston’s self-defence where he tried to blame Sophie Elliott. His self-centred arrogance and sheer nastiness lost him any hope of sympathy from me and I hope he rots in prison forever. I’m expecting I will come to a similar conclusion when this case comes to trial. The sooner the better.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. There have been two announcements for remembrance on Friday, one of which I support and the other which I strongly denounce.

    Two minutes of silence will be held for victims of the shooting and I am glad to hear it. I am unsure why two minutes was selected over one, as “a minute’s silence” or “moment of silence” is universally used to mourn victims killed in a tragedy. In the Commonwealth a “two minutes silence” is only used on Remembrance Day to honour those who died in combat, while in Israel it is used on Holocaust Remembrance Day. I am not sure if the selection of one over the other is supposed to have any significance.

    The second announcement is to play the Islamic call to prayer via state broadcasters over the airwaves during the two-minute’s silence.
    https://www.rightminds.nz/articles/government-broadcast-there-no-god-allah-airwaves?fbclid=IwAR2mI0blia6bdFkWdbR8hSIlhqoZwa-IpMo1PeROr0kqevKXI0D23AnXsXk

    Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life removed from Whitcoulls following Christchurch terror attack
    https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/entertainment/2019/03/jordan-peterson-s-12-rules-for-life-removed-from-whitcoulls-following-christchurch-terror-attack.html

    It’s always darkest before dawn.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I suspect it will get darker yet. As far as I know Peterson rarely talks about Islam or his views on immigration but does effectively challenge the ideologies underlying cultural Marxism/political correctness. I suspect this is why he was targeted. I hope Whitcoulls lose business over this. I presume their execs have never read Fahrenheit 451.

      Liked by 4 people

  4. I read an article a month or so ago it mentioned Treasury advice on _? and stated “National lost the election over immigration”. That was also my impression. According to Asia NZ report 41% thing immigration from Asia will have a “positive impact”. Those with “most knowledge” were “most positive” in their opinion. You cam have too much of a good thing. On the Panel a poll asked (I think) how accepting of diversity New Zealanders are 17% Accepting 18% not accepting and the rest sat on the fence?

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    • “”Those debates matter – unless, apparently like the authors of this document – you regard all differences of culture, politics, religion etc as superficial rather than fundamental.””

      This terrible event has reminded NZ we are all human with common response to evil and we are all united by one set of laws. (For example for the purchase of guns). Being a New Zealand citizen gives us plenty of space for diversity and even permits links to country or culture of origin however there are limits to diversity; some of them almost arbitrary – you either can or cannot marry a first cousin, have sex after a specific age, divorce by text message, hit a child, etc. So diversity of food and dance and attire is usually acceptable to reasonable people but once you start discussing FGM or polygamy you have to accept the rule of New Zealand law and expect some intolerance and hate speech if you want to adopt them. You deserve intolerant hate speech if you chose to eat cats or dogs or indulge in nudity in a public space. You can only have multi-culturalism subordinate to New Zealand laws and our commonly accepted values.

      Some academic ideas about multi-culturalism are very irritatingly wrong. I fear multi-culturalism as I found it in Spitalfields when I lived there or Bradford when I visit family – they are parrallel non-interacting societies. Some of the representives speaking for multi-cultural associations on the radio today made sensible statements but it was clear they saw themselves as being part of NZ.

      SoreThumb – your poll results will be entirely dependant on how the questions are framed.

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  5. But vile as his acts were, he was – and is – a human being. And, as Solzhenitsyn sagely put it, the line between good and evil runs not between people or states, but through every human heart.

    Unless their chinese eh? Then they’re just pure evil….according to Michael

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      • I don’t think NZ is going to get a FTA with the US by banning US manufactured Ruger semi automatics. The US munitions industry is not going to be too happy.

        Watched a TV series, Traitors, on the initial funders and backers of the OSS or now called the CIA after WWII. Funded and backed by US industry leaders because the US government was disbanding the intelligence and spy agency as the war had ended.

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    • Interesting that the Christchurch terrorist is a great respecter of the Chinese regime. No doubt their extreme social manipulation and control, persecution of religious and ethnic minorities and totalitarian and fascist agenda align so closely with his own.
      I can recommend Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago, special 50th anniversary (of its publishing and 100th of the great mans birth) edition with an utterly compelling foreword by Dr Jordan Peterson. Lest we forget.

      Liked by 2 people

      • He was a respecternof the Chinese regime as caricatured by the West. Not as it actually is. Do not confuse ordinary security measures at a time of a real threat of terrorism and even civil war with the inherent nature of the regime.
        For one, the chinese government has long encouraged ethnic minorities to increase in number through exempting them from the one child policy. It encourages ethnic minorities to speak their own languages and have strong affirmative action policies in place, particularly on terms of achieving university places with far lower marks than the Han majority. Somehow I don’t think these art the type of policies the shooter or his ilk would ever grant to non White minorities of God forbid they ever ascended to power.

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      • Brexit is going to be interesting. At the moment it is held up because the Irish cannot agree to have a hard border exit with the EU which makes the current proposal untenable with a majority of the British Parliament. In order for a hard Brexit with no agreed proposal, it is either no Brexit or risk a breakup of the UK. Or shall we see British troops in Ireland once again armed with the famous Sten machine guns.

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  6. This shooting is a tragedy not only for the fact innocent people have died violently, but because it grants the modern left a virtual carte blanche to deploy their agenda without opposition. What was the Reichstag fire* for the National Socialists, is this event for the Labour and Green parties. “Everything has changed” they keep repeating. It has emboldened Ardern, who can finally put her cheerless expression and voice to good use, and given her lame duck government a boost. First stop is firearms laws, but next will be hate speech laws, internet restrictions. Such is the atmosphere, they don’t even need to debate or pass legislation – the craven public and business seem to be preemptively happy to ban and self-flagellate before Queen Ardern issues her decrees. Any sensible discussion over immigration will be impossible, so expect this to continue unabated. Even a technical economic analysis of immigration policy will need a vast recital of caveats about not being against migrants and different cultures before you can get to the actual detail of an argument.

    What annoys me most on top of all this is the sheer dishonesty of these opportunists – whenever there is a corresponding terrorist attack committed by people in the name of Islam, we are told by the same Labour/Green types this has nothing to do with that faith – there is no wider narrative, only a lone wolf. Yet here, with exact situation in reverse, with no wider network obviously involved (save for internet counterparts) a vast chain of events has been constructed, running from 19th century colonialism in NZ, to this event, and taking in virtually all white New Zealanders alive during this time. The cause of both types of events most likely has a similar root cause, social isolation coupled with intellectual ghettoisation via the internet with the ideological elements being tangental to the event… Still – the level of double think is astonishing.

    * – I am not a paranoid conspiracy theorist suggesting this was a ‘false flag’ event.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I agree with you wholeheartedly. Hard left politicians and academics have been very quick to construct a false narrative for this dreadful tragedy in order to vilify those who do not share their extreme views. Witch hunts and book bannings are already underway. Measures to suppress our basic freedoms may come soon – who knows, they may already exist as draft recommendations for Ardern’s Commission of Inquiry. Ironically the extreme left are intent on fulfilling the reported objectives of the terrorist’s agenda which included fomenting division and repression. They must not be allowed to prevail.

      Liked by 1 person

      • This is real scary and personally I am really scared. With our Police able to track locations by IP addresses and arrest ordinary people with a very loose interpretation of hate commenting, We do not really have freedom of expression any longer. I will need to tone back on my liberal use of Comrade Jacinda Ardern and Comrade Grant Stalin Robertson in communist New Zealand.

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  7. Any talk about hate speech gets me worried. One person’s dispassionate, rational discourse could be another’s hate speech. It’s all a question of interpretation. I am content with NZ’s laws regarding speech – vile, hateful people should be able to reveal themselves as such and enjoy the scorn of society with impunity, and we should be free to tell them what we think of their views.
    Inciting violence against another group for whatever reason is a crime, and should remain a crime. Anything more gives latitude to the courts to interpret anything the judge deems as offensive as being an actual crime.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Some discretion has to rest with the authorities. If I take of my clothes at an accepted nudist beach nobody bothers, if I did so in my garden nobody would see it, if my house had a garden facing the street then the police would act. Similarly pointing out contradictions in the bible during a church service would correctly be recognised as a provocative act and not a public spirited sharing of knowledge. Substitute Koran and Mosque.

        You cannot assert all cultural beliefs are equal. It was a lesson I learned in PNG. For example a tribal culture may have a long held custom of torturing witches to death. So the PNG police have to assert it is against the law and perpetrators will be arrested. My worry is that if hate laws are passed to prevent any criticism then what can be done to stop FGM? It is quite possible someone wants to protest about the way Jews and Muslims slaughter animals; if prevented from discussing the issue by hate laws then there is a danger that it will create the same evil mindset as caused the massacre a week ago.

        I suppose I’m saying hate is a natural human emotion – you only have to see a child who hates cabbage – hating may be a precursor to terrorist crime but that is insufficient reason to outlaw hate speech.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I largely agree with you but just two points in response:

        – yes, there is always discretion in enforcing the law, but that discretion should be quite tightly limited in almost all circumstances. If something is an offence it should generally be prosecuted. If the statutory threshold is too low, raise it.

        – I guess people might regard it as a little rude to barge into a church service, grabbing the microphone and – as you say – asserting the contradictions etc, but I can’t imagine any congregation regarding that as something they’d want to take to the Police. I guess if it was happening from the same person every Sunday it might be different. There is a distinction that should be maintained between what is rude or not done in decent society, and what is unlawful. Of course, it is harder to manage the more diverse society is, because there are fewer agreed boundaries/taboos for self-restraint.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Immigration policy should be decided by individual countries based on their perceived needs. The UN has no role in dictating policy, which is what the UN Compact on Migration effectively is doing.
    New Zealand’s population has nearly doubled in my lifetime and I don’t recall a public debate on what was an ideal population target. Was it 4 million, 10 million or 15 million? I’m sure politicians and ministry officials have been throwing around ideas for years, especially when news of an aging population and the impact of less people working and more on a pension was considered. But why won’t they come out and tell us where we are heading? Someone decided 3.5 million was too small and immigration levels have been tracking up ever since.
    I recall reading news stories in the 1990’s about the worryingly low birthrates in many European countries, where women had on average 1 baby and dire predictions on demographics. Someone did something about it, it seems, as immigration from third world countries was later encouraged, often from the Middle East or North Africa, and then Germany’s Merkel gave an open invitation a few years ago and the “Syrian” stampede began. Was the solution to low European birth rates discussed with the public in Sweden, France, Germany and others? Not that I am aware of. Again it seems to be policy developed outside of public scrutiny and comment. And that’s why there are rumbles of discontent as citizens, major stakeholders, have been left out of the decision process. The UN Compact on Migration seeks to continue alienating citizens of sovereign states and make emigration a human right not able to be questioned or denied. It should be opposed for that reason.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I think you are assuming too much strategy around our immigration policy. To a considerable extent it got underway again (around 1990) on the rather lazy view that somehow we needed to “replace” the people who’d left, or more or less carried on from there, becoming part of the orthodoxy and championed by some uneasy mix of the busines community and the left and right wing “globalists”. But add to that the idea that has shaped NZ since at least Vogel that more people is better, that we should fill the land and subdue it, all more or less in step with places like Aus and Canada.

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      • But add to that the idea that has shaped NZ since at least Vogel that more people is better, that we should fill the land and subdue it, all more or less in step with places like Aus and Canada.

        Yes, you are correct here. Mass immigration did not start in the 1990s as some sort of globalist agenda. – at least when we are speaking of the Anglo Saxon settler states. Arthur Calwell actively promoted mass European immigration to Australia under the slogan ‘populate or perish’ and there was mass migration of British migrants to this country post-war (as well as before of course). Naturally the settler states of the US, Canada, Australia, and NZ have always encouraged immigration – but from traditional sources.

        The big change in NZ happened in 1988 I think, when Labour opened up immigration not just to British and to a lesser extent European origin people but to the whole world on an equal basis. There was no active intent to change the demographics or to even become a multicultural country (I don’t think the term was much heard around 30 years ago), but these things happened as a natural consequence of adopting a non-racially or ethnically discriminatory policy. Then National jumped on it in the early 1990s, encouraged by business interests, and so New Zealand has changed enormously in the past 30 years.

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    • Was the solution to low European birth rates discussed with the public in Sweden, France, Germany and others? Not that I am aware of.

      Most policies the government adopts, from GST, to immigration, to trade deals, to gun laws even, are not discussed with the public. They are imposed. As should be the case. Governments are elected to govern, not to ask the public at each step of the way what to do.

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      • Jacinda Ardern was freely elected but as a result we have lost our freedom. Freedom to explore for oil and gas, gone. Freedom to own guns, gone. Freedom of free speech, gone. Freedom to charge letting fees, gone. Freedom to claim tax losses on property, gone. Freedom of competition to lower fuel costs, gone with regional fuel taxes. Freedom from Capital Gains Tax, gone. Freedom to make mistakes as a teenager, gone.

        Liked by 1 person

    • As has been pointed out, the Compact calls on governments to intervene in the operation of the media, rewarding those who tow the official line and penalizing others. This is a direct threat to freedom of speech. I am shocked that opposition to such provisions is considered “extreme right” in today’s New Zealand. We must have taken a wrong turn somewhere along the way.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I’ve been talking to people and I’m fairly sure the ordinary people are deeply concerned about the attack on people of European ancestry everywhere. Other nations do not have a problem with maintaining their ethnic majorities.
    The problem is our cultural elite dominate everything. Our journalists ooze with sanctimony.

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