With an election just seven months away it’s useful to reflect on the changing nature of politics - on both the left and right of the political spectrum - and what influence it might have on New Zealand.
Over recent years Google and Facebook have become targets in a campaign questioning whether such successful international companies are paying their “fair share” of tax in the countries in which they operate.
If US President Donald Trump was the Prime Minister of New Zealand and heard what the Ministry for Primary Industries is doing to Biddy Fraser-Davies of Cwmglyn Cheese in Ekatahuna, he would undoubtedly call the head of that agency and say “You're fired”.
I write in some distress as it appears MPI is determined to close me down with their excessive demands for repeat testing of raw milk, immature cheese curd and final product testing of Cwmglyn mature raw hard cheese.
Waitangi Day has been steeped in local protest and controversy for years. That’s why Prime Minister Norman Kirk named it New Zealand Day when he turned it into a national holiday in 1973 - to signify that New Zealand was moving towards a broader concept of nationhood.
There is little public debate on the meaning of the Treaty. But there should be. Uncontested assertions are shaping government policy, judicial thinking and political debate. In the manner of the marae, our common interests are best served by robust debate, in an environment of mutual respect.
Political Correctness is being used by vested interest groups to force new norms of thought and behaviour onto society. Nowadays if you are not “sensitive” enough in embracing values such as “tolerance” and “diversity”, then you will be aggressively attacked and stigmatised by activist critics - including in the media.
The worst part of Antonio Gramsci’s legacy is that it has effectively transcended its Marxist origins. His outlook is now blankly taken for granted by millions of teachers, writers, even churchmen, who have no idea that they are committed to cultural Marxism.
2016 has been a year of significant political change. Establishment politics has been turned on its head. From the Brexit referendum in the UK, to the election of Donald Trump in the US, the shock waves kept coming.