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Auckland sensitivity on ethnicity

  • May 4th, 2014

Cam Slater comments on the Herald report of the withdrawal of an Auckland Council survey that appears to have been trying to find out what people think of the emergence of 'Chinatowns' and other concentrations of ethnicities in their city.

I wonder what decisions the Council expected to take with the advantage of such information? Ethnic quotas in the Unitary Plan to prevent such concentrations? Or to 'protect' and foster them?

I understand the reaction against even asking the questions. I was educated in an era when we expected the state to be colour-blind, with equal rights and treatment of all.

New Zealand signed the UN treaty to Eliminate all forms of Racial Discrimination when I was a teenager. Twenty years later our Parliament effectively abandoned it without much debate when it created race privileges under the impression (false) that it was implementing the Treaty of Waitangi.

But outside the Anglosphere, most people around the world remain less sensitive. See for example the lack of apology for the stereotypes in  one of Quora's top questions this morning:

What are the misconceptions Chinese people have about the US and the rest of the world?

  1. Westerners only care about themselves, and don't care about their families.
  2. Americans have no culture because they have no history.
  3. Europeans have culture, but their economies are lousy except for northern Europe
  4. Southern Europeans are lazy bums
  5. Americans pretend to be open, but in fact they don't say what they really think. They just pretend to. In comparison, Chinese are more straightforward.
  6. All non-Chinese cuisines taste terrible compared to Chinese food.
  7. Western parents let their kids run wild. As a result they are on drugs and are lazy bums.
  8. Why do western parents let their kids study liberal arts. Are they crazy? How will they make a living?
  9. Westerners are crazy to borrow money to buy junk they don't need.
  10. Among Americans, Jewish people are smartest and are most like Chinese. They work hard, enjoy good food and put pressure on their kids. None of this individualism nonsense.
  11. If your kids marry outside, it's best to marry a Jewish person. The rest are a mess…
  12. Americans just act without thinking. Chinese always think first.
  13. The Indians are a lot like Chinese but they dress funny and their food is strange. But they are smart and hardworking.
  The comments are worth a look.
















  • Robert Miles
  • May 11th, 2014
  • 7:14 pm

New Zealand’s real value is that it is a USN aircraft carrier which protects the strategic flank of Australia and the rich resources of Antartica, with its oil and fish. Actual seaborne aircraft carriers are not likely to last long in the age of the submarine when Russians subs have Mach 3-7 conventional missiles and torpedoes of 400km speed. In a Russian first conventional strike the US Navy carriers would have no chance. NZs real value is a US base not as a foodsource. Argentine was the Uks real food source in WW1 and WW2. NZ was too far away and had WW2 contnued for another 2 years until mid 1947 which it well might have in Asia and Europe, German subs of the new fast streamlined type would have cut any links for food xports from NZ well before the end of 1945.

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