New Zealand Can Top The 2020 Olympics Medal Table With a Team Full of Transgenders

It’s now possible for men to compete in women’s sports if their feelings would be hurt by being excluded. New Zealanders can use this to our sporting advantage

The fashion of the zeitgeist is to ignore biology and to deny that it has any effect whatsoever on the patterns of conduct of human affairs. This has had a number of unforeseen consequences, all of which are taboo to speak about on account of going against that fashion. However, there are ways that astute observers can use these fashions to their advantage, and New Zealand could use it to beat both America and China in the next Olympics.

New Zealand had never won a weightlifting world championship medal until transgender athlete Laurel Hubbard did so on Wednesday. Born a male named Gavin, and doing a lot of weightlifting training as an adult male, Gavin decided that he was Laurel and is now a she. Because the fashion of the zeitgeist is to ignore biology, no-one dared say anything about the colossal advantage Laurel was inevitably going to have in a strength-based sport on account of being a man, and he duly achieved something never before achieved by a Kiwi athlete.

No New Zealander had ever won a world championship medal in weightlifting before, unsurprising for such a small country in such a popular event. But no New Zealander had ever had the advantage of a man’s wrists, forearms, biceps, triceps, quadriceps, shoulders, abdominals and calves in the women’s division before either.

Comically, if Hubbard had lifted his personal best in the snatch event at these world championships, he would have won the gold medal, smashing his next opponent by 5kg.

Some might think it astonishing that this kind of thing is even allowed, because it clearly goes against the Corinthian ideal of fair play in sport. But in any case, it isn’t for us to set the direction of the social narrative. That is done by the major media enterprises, who spend millions where we spend hundreds; we can only watch, question, and share observations in the hope that those wise enough to listen will survive the coming catastrophe.

It’s enough to say this: New Zealand needs to invest some serious money into recruiting a contingent of transgender athletes to dominate the women’s events at the 2020 Olympics. We may never get a chance like this again.

If we invested in about 150 transgender athletes to compete in female Olympic events, New Zealand could realistically have a chance of topping the world medal count at the next Olympics if the example of Laurel Hubbard is anything to go by. America won 46 gold medals in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, and New Zealand won four, meaning that we need at least 43 men to compete as transgenders in women’s events and to win for us to top the Olympic rankings.

The obvious events to target are the ones where men have massive physiological advantages on account of the different selective pressures facing men and women in the evolutionary history of primates. Men have not been rewarded by nature for our nurturing abilities, but for our abilities to smash skulls and rip out throats and crush scrotums. So the Olympic events that share similarities with these things should be at the top of the hit list.

If Laurel Hubbard can win silver in this world championships, we can count on transgenders being able to smash foreign women in all events involving upper body strength. Probably we could get a transgender to win every weight division in the weightlifting, as well as all throwing events such as shotput, discus, hammer and javelin, and perhaps we could also dominate the swimming events. All of the fighting events should be easy wins for Kiwi men competing in international women’s divisions: certainly wrestling and boxing can be targeted.

Winning all of these events and divisions would give us 50 gold medals and an almost certain top spot on the next Olympic medal table. No doubt the rules on this will be tightened up after Hubbard’s win, so we ought to act now to seize this unprecedented opportunity to win an absolute swag of medals.

VJMP Reads: The Interregnum: Rethinking New Zealand VI

This reading carries on from here.

The sixth essay in The Interregnum is ‘Radical Kaupapa Maori Politics’ by Carrie Stoddart-Smith. Turning to maoridictionary.co.nz I discover that kaupapa means, in this context, something like ‘agenda’ (indeed, within the first page it has been defined as “something like first principles”), but the essay itself explores the various definitions of ‘Kaupapa Maori’.

At the core of this essay is the question that Maori have been asking themselves for 200 years. To what extent to we cling to the old ways, and to what extent to we abandon them for the sake of adaptation to a world that is different to what it was when the old days arose?

Many mainstream readers, conditioned to mainstream journalism, will find the tone of this essay jarring, as it is heavy on the kind of guilt-based sermon-style rhetoric that so many have learned to manipulate otherwise well-meaning audiences with.

It’s also full of the unnecessary race-baiting and shit-stirring that has become associated with the American style of race rhetoric, such as when Stoddart-Smith justifies the exclusion of non-Maori with “empowering Maori voices that continue to be silenced by the noise of history, and by the protestations of white New Zealand that insist on shouting us down and shutting us out.”

Unfortunately this dishonest, deliberately aggravating style of rhetoric is a throwback to the Cultural Marxism espoused in the introductory essay. Only “white New Zealand” is the enemy; the fact that Asian and Pacific Islander New Zealanders think much less of Maoris than white people do, not having had two centuries of living together, is ignored on account of not fitting the narrative (the fact that Asians and Pacific Islanders are harder to guilt trip may also be a factor).

It’s a shame that a confrontational and antagonistic stylistic approach was taken, because there’s plenty of philosophical value in this essay. In particular, Stoddart-Smith draws multiple parallels between kaupapa Maori and the anarchist philosophy of mutualism.

After all, pre-European contact Maori did not have a central government, and as a consequence they adapted to learn patterns of mutual support that helped them and their neighbours to survive. In some cases the agreements over which tribe had the rights to access what were very sophisticated and complicated, but the important thing was that they were mutually consensual, in contrast to today’s arrangement where representatives of the Queen enforce the law whether people like it or not.

If this side of things had been emphasised, this could have been a good essay. Unfortunately it’s full of common separatist canards like “colonialism embedded patriarchy in tikanga Maori” and the revisionist attempt to ignore He iwi tahi tatou, as if the historical nature of interactions between Maori and British settlers had been entirely involuntary on the part of the Maori, rather than mutually beneficial.

One feels that a sophisticated approach to redressing the historical wrongs done to the Maori people, and this essay falls a long way short of that. It is, however, a good example of Marxist agitprop.

If Politicians Don’t Like Binge Drinking, They Need To Legalise The Cannabis Alternative

Smoking cannabis is safer than drinking a crate, but if we’re not allowed cannabis then we’ll drink the crate

Another Crate Day, another opportunity for self-righteous old wowsers to stand up and condemn partying and having a good time. Unfortunately, New Zealand is full of these useless old bastards, and they’re as stupid as they are pompous. If our political class had any clue, they would legalise cannabis immediately so that there was a recreational alternative to alcohol.

Jonathan Coleman, the former National Health Minister who presided over the gutting of the New Zealand mental health system and the subsequent highest teen suicide rate in the world, is currently one of the most prominent. Coleman slashed funding to rape crisis centres and community crisis teams for the sake of tax cuts for the wealthy, driving many poor families into a desperation that was frequently fatal, and this week he was in the news criticising Crate Day.

Coleman said that Kiwi patterns of heavy alcohol use are “part of a past New Zealand should be leaving behind”. Binge drinking is, indeed, a remnant of the sleazy and vulgar New Zealand that many of us want to leave behind, but the political class gets the Police to put us in cages if we use any alternative to alcohol.

The vast majority of us know that cannabis is a safer alternative to alcohol, and we have been trying to tell the ruling class this ever since it was made medicinally legal in California in 1996. So why didn’t the National Party legalise it when they were in power?

There is plenty of evidence that shows that rates of binge drinking decrease when cannabis is legalised. The reasons why are obvious to anyone who thinks about it honestly: people have recreational needs that must be met otherwise mental illness will result, and getting fucked up can be one of those needs (of course the old wowsers and control freaks will never admit this).

Given a choice of different ways to get fucked up, most people will choose the healthiest way, unless they have a death wish, and this is why rates of cannabis use continue to increase in the West. When alcohol is the only option, it will have to do.

Robin Room, an Australian professor, has himself claimed that legalising cannabis is the right thing to do because there are fewer social harms associated with it than with alcohol. Pointing out something that has been long known to knowledgeable people, Professor Room has stated that the association between alcohol and violence makes it more dangerous than using cannabis ever realistically could be.

There is already ample evidence that legalising cannabis is the right thing to do from the perspective of decreasing human suffering, and if our political class had any sense they would get onto it immediately.

Coleman said “Crate Day is something, in modern New Zealand, we can do without.” What New Zealand could really do without is ignorant, arrogant, stubborn old pricks like Jonathan Coleman, who refuse to do the decent thing and admit that cannabis prohibition is an offence against the New Zealand people.

In New Zealand, Growing Cannabis is Worse Than Raping Children With No Remorse

This month, Brian Borland (pictured) received a longer prison sentence for growing cannabis than Noel Edward Thomas Williams did for raping children and blackmailing their family

New Zealanders generally like to believe that they live in a fair society. We like to believe that those tasked with maintaining justice, like our District Court judges, act fairly and with compassion. But this is no longer possible if you look at how the New Zealand court system treated a man who grew an illicit medicine, compared to a literal child rapist, this month.

Brian Borland, of Daktory fame, was sentenced to four years and nine months prison for four cannabis charges earlier this month, while a few weeks later a Noel Edward Thomas Williams was sentenced to only four years in prison for literally raping a child and showing no remorse.

No Kiwi can fail to be disgusted by the absolute failure of our “justice” system to deliver anything like justice this November. Edwards was found guilty of raping a girl aged between 12 and 16 and indecently assaulting a child under 12, showed no remorse at any point and despite the judge saying “for a child this is the last thing that is wanted,” – in other words, this was the most evil thing that a man could ever do to an innocent child – he got less prison than a cannabis grower.

What’s wrong with our country when you can rape some children and blackmail them for decades, destroying them psychologically and showing no remorse even after being caught like an utter psychopath, and get less of a prison sentence than someone growing a medicinal plant?

If You Want the Young to Avoid Smoking, Properly Fund a Mental Health System

The way to lower rates of tobacco use is not by raising taxes on the substance but by curing the mental illnesses that lead to people finding solace in smoking

Decades of government propaganda has convinced most people that tobacco smoking is a harmful addiction with absolutely no benefits whatsoever. Unfortunately, this brutalist approach to what is really a complicated issue neglects the very real psychiatric benefits of smoking tobacco. This essay proposes that the only realistic way to get young people to avoid smoking is to properly fund a mental health system.

Because our culture is going backwards in many ways, we are losing a lot of wisdom that used to be common. A lot of old folk remedies have been forgotten because a large pharmaceutical company was able to make profits selling an alternative. Cannabis is the most obvious of these, but tobacco risks becoming another.

Tobacco has been used in the West for its anti-anxiolytic and antidepressant qualities for hundreds of years, beginning with its discovery by Europeans in South America. The substance has a long history of shamanic use in South America, where some traditions seemed to believe that the exhaled smoke carried one’s wishes up to God.

Unfortunately, knowledge about how to use this substance wisely has been lost, and most people have drifted to either the extreme of smoking a pack a day or the extreme of thinking that tobacco has no benefits at all. Subtlety has been forgotten.

The first public government campaign against tobacco smoking was carried out by Nazi Germany. The authoritarian nature of the National Socialists made them well suited for ignoring the mental health benefits of the substance. Despite that, the Nazis were unwilling to go quite as far as the New Zealand Government and try to have the substance banned.

The truth is that people smoke tobacco because it feels good, and that tobacco feels good not because it gives an instant rush of pleasure that makes you addicted but because it alleviates suffering that already existed in the smoker’s mind.

If it was true that it gave people a rush of instant pleasure then everyone should become addicted, but this is not at all the case. People who are suffering psychologically are far more likely to become addicted, for the simple reason that smoking tobacco temporarily takes the suffering away. This appears to be especially true of people suffering from schizophrenia, depression or anxiety.

Some will say that these people have “addictive personalities”, but that is rubbish. The simple fact is that people who are suffering are more likely to take a substance that alleviates that suffering than people who are not suffering – this is obvious if one considers the balance of incentives.

And so they smoke tobacco because it helps them deal with stress, anxiety, rage, depression, and a range of neurotic and psychotic disorders.

The correct approach here is not to brutally force the citizenry into abstinence by taxing the mentally ill into poverty like a 20th century authoritarian hellhole would, but to cure the mental illnesses that cause people to smoke tobacco before they start smoking it.

Fundamentally, this means two interrelated things have to change. The first is for the Government to acknowledge that mental illness are legitimate health problems in the same way that physical illnesses are, and to properly fund a mental health system. With a properly funded mental health system psychiatrists will be able to keep up to date in their field instead of parroting 30-year old drug war propaganda because they have no time to research.

For this to be possible depends on the second thing, which is that New Zealand makes a cultural change in which it acknowledges that mental illnesses are legitimate problems in the same way that physical illnesses are, and that “hardening up” when you are suffering from depression makes as much sense as hardening up when you have a broken leg, and is equally as likely to kill you if you try to go on with your life without getting help.

VJMP Reads: The Interregnum: Rethinking New Zealand IV

This reading carries on from here.

The fourth essay in The Interregnum is ‘Climate Change and Just Transition’ by Edward Miller. Keeping with the theme of the book so far, Miller describes himself as “a political activist with a keen interest in global justice,” and declares the enemy as “the deeply held commitment of large businesses and governments to maintaining economic growth at all costs.”

Miller laments that neoliberalism has made conditions worse for the “most vulnerable of society,” and it is for them who Miller claims to speak. There is already a problem with this, as anyone who has spent time around the most vulnerable of society would know, and it’s that people with pressing, immediate problems couldn’t care less about things like “global justice”.

Writing of the need to sacrifice economic growth for the sake of lowering our carbon emissions, Miller suggests that he is completely engrossed in the bubble of middle-class privilege, like many Green supporters. The practical reality is that sacrificed economic growth means workers getting fired, hours being cut, health care being postponed or cancelled, and children going hungry – considerations often lost on the young and carefree.

Action on climate change is described as something “we so desperately need” – further evidence that Miller lives in an echo chamber. What we need are better wages, better houses, and better attitudes to mental healthcare and to child abuse. Problems with proximate causes and clear solutions. Focusing on problems with clear solutions will all us to ensure that our energies are not wasted from virtue signalling about issues we cannot affect.

Much like other commentators in this book so far, Miller attacks neoliberalism as if it was an evil that sprang from nowhere upon an unsuspecting world in the mid 1980s. This is perhaps to be expected of young writers who are yet to comprehend that history and the world existed before they were born, and were not things discovered by them.

But it’s difficult to take seriously a work that does not place neoliberalism in its context of the complete collapse of the Soviet Union and the West’s increasing awareness that Communism had directly led to the starvation of tens of millions of people. In the 1980s and early 1990s, Communism appeared to the world as a monstrous evil that had, after almost half a century, finally been defeated. It was natural that things move in the direction away from it.

Almost certainly, this movement away from Communism went too far, as political movements tend to do, and so neoliberalism does need to be balanced. But we don’t need to balance it with economic and social policies that have established historical precedents of failure.

The idea of returning the means of production to the masses via an unelected ideological elite that purports to speak for those masses is known to be suicidal, but Miller avoids this easy fantasy, making a successful point when he promotes the idea of a universal basic income by means of the Government printing money.

Unfortunately, the fate of those other men who have proposed debt-free Government-backed money (McKinley, Lincoln, Hitler, Kennedy, Gadaffi) is ignored here. Perhaps this book is not thick enough for the kind of investigation necessary for such a thing.

Charlie Manson: So Close And Yet So Far

Charles Manson: got a lot right, got a lot wrong

Charles Manson: thought by some to be a genius, thought by many to be a maniac. Only a select few realised that he was both. In his actions relating to the infamous Family killings, Manson almost showed humanity a new way of relating to power, but a poor choice of target disqualify his actions from being considered anarcho-homicidalism.

Much like Adolf Hitler, Manson kept a coterie of devoted followers on account of an extraordinary level of charisma and penchant for giving lectures about the degeneracy into which the outside world had fallen. Also much like Adolf Hitler, Manson had a lot of excellent ideas that lacked execution, with consequences that the world would not forget.

One of the excellent ideas that Manson had was that people ought to rise up and challenge the control system, on account of its incredible corruption and the lies and destruction that it has wrought upon the Earth. Rising up against liars and thieves who have wormed themselves into positions of authority is the basis of anarcho-homicidalism, and no doubt Manson played on natural anarcho-homicidalist sentiments when he persuaded Watson et al. to do what they did.

Nobody can stand in judgement, they can play like they’re standing in judgement. They can play like they stand in judgement and take you off and control the masses, with your human body. They can lock you up in penitentiaries and cages and put you in crosses like they did in the past, but it doesn’t amount to anything. What they’re doing is, they’re only persecuting a reflection of themselves. They’re persecuting what they can’t stand to look at in themselves, the truth. – Charles Manson

Some might argue that Manson was an anarcho-homicidalist, on account of that much of his stated ideology was anarchic, and so the homicidal actions of the Family were also anarchism. It could indeed be argued that the Family actions were anarchic, because behaving in that manner is demonstrating very clearly that one has no rulers, but actions only constitute legitimate anarcho-homicidalism if they are conducted against someone making an attempt to enslave another.

It’s not really fair to target members of the cultural elite on that basis alone, for the reason that they are not the ones holding the reins of power. Sharon Tate was an actress – an influential position admittedly – but no-one took orders from her. She didn’t threaten anyone into coercion; she didn’t try to enslave anyone. She was just a pretty face that people paid money to look at for a few hours.

There was perhaps an element of jealousy in Manson’s selection of target, in that he had found it difficult to break into Los Angeles cultural circles, and so chose to target those who had. Such motivations cannot be considered anarcho-homicidal in any real sense, because they didn’t target anyone who held real coercive power, and were not motivated by the ideal of liberation.

This absence of coercive power meant that the people the Manson Family killed were not aggressors in any real sense, and therefore killing them could not be justified in self defence.

If Manson had targeted politicians instead, things would be very different. America was embroiled in the Vietnam War in 1969, and the Government was drafting young men to fight it without their consent, on pain of imprisonment. Killing any prominent warhawk or supporter of the Vietnam War would have been a legitimate act of anarcho-homicidalism, and would have been much more effective than abusing the draftees when they returned.

Charles Manson and his Family had more or less the right idea; their major error lay in the selection of a target that was not directly trying to enslave them.

VJMP Reads: The Interregnum: Rethinking New Zealand III

This reading carries on from here.

The third essay in The Interregnum is “Reimagining the Economy” by Wilbur Townsend. I must admit that reading a book that opens with several Marx and Gramsci quotes which then goes into radical economic intervention makes me think of the millions of people who starved to death in the 20th century. Despite that, I continue in the belief that the left must have learned to moderate its radicalism by now.

Promisingly, this essay opens by sticking to sober facts. Townsend points out that the economy has grown by 48% since 1990, but the average wage is only 22% higher, on account of that the dividends of this greater economic growth is not being distributed. Moreover, wages in finance and insurance have grown 62% while wages in hospitality have grown 3%.

“There is money being earned in this country but, increasingly, it isn’t being earned by us.” This is the central lament of this essay, and it’s a fair one. After all, neoliberalism and free trade are sold to the people as innovations that will increase the logistical efficiency of getting cheap goods and services to market. But it’s not worth saving $500 on a television if you also lose $15,000 in wages.

In an odd coincidence, the essay contains a reference to Luddites, in the context of people who opposed technological advancement on the basis that it destroyed labour opportunity, and who question the liberating potential of these advancements. Jonty Gillespie and the machine cultists in The Verity Key refer to people as Luddites if they’re not interested in going deep enough into a virtual environment to forget the outside world.

Despite representing working-class sentiments more faithfully than Morgan Godfery managed in his opening effort, the middle-class social justice warrior influence does shine through at some points in Townsend’s essay, such as when he laments that “Misogynistic workplaces” and “sexist bosses” are responsible for the dearth of female truckies and wharfies. One suspects that some of Townsend’s acquaintances would happily have a proportion of men castrated if such was considered necessary to “solve the gender gap”.

Like many in the left of today, biological explanations for gender differences are avoided with superstitious fervour.

The youthful idealism also shines through when he argues for a universal basic income.

No matter how good the arguments for a universal basic income are, we have never had one before and there are good reasons for this. Townsend possesses an eerie certitude about the idea that a universal basic income would lead to a sharp increase in the quality of life, and, although there’s good reason to agree with him, raising the spectre of people dropping out of society to move to Takaka and smoke bongs might not sell it to a Middle New Zealand that just put the National Party in power for nine years.

Townsend takes this idealism so far as to insist that the factories, machines and raw materials should be returned to the collective. He pre-empts the obvious criticism by acknowledging that historians don’t have much time for Communism, but he waves it away by saying “I suspect they just haven’t noticed it done well.”

Despite this, he makes a good point when he mentions that sovereign wealth funds could serve as the capital owners of a range of national assets or robot workfleets, and from there a universal basic income might become possible.

In summary, this essay mixes some good points with a terrifyingly nonchalant self-righteous belief in the primacy of Marxist ideas. It’s probably fair to consider this a piece inspired by youthful idealism, despite the intelligent points occasionally raised.

If Charles Manson Was a Serial Killer, What Was George W Bush?

Charles Manson: responsible for 999,991 fewer deaths than George W Bush

News media are reporting that one of the world’s most “notorious serial killers”, Charles Manson, has died in prison. Described as a “mass murderer” by many, including Wikipedia, Manson was found guilty for a string of murders committed by followers of his Family cult, even though it was only ever alleged that he ordered the killings. But if Manson was a serial killer for ordering the deaths of nine people, then what is George W Bush, who ordered the deaths of a million?

It’s well known that Charles Manson never killed anyone himself (at least he was never tried of a murder that he committed himself). At his famous trial, where he faced several counts of murder, it was never even alleged that he killed anyone. From the beginning it was asserted that the Family members had killed on his authority, and so Manson was as good as guilty even if he hadn’t literally murdered.

One obvious question arises from this. If being the leader of a hippie cult that killed nine people is enough to get a man put in prison for life, how has George W Bush got away with being the leader of a statist cult that killed over a million people? Surely, according to the same logic that was used to imprison Manson, George W Bush ought to stand trial for several hundreds of thousands of counts of murder and up to a million counts of manslaughter?

All of the US soldiers that killed people in Iraq from 2003 onward justify what they did because they had vowed to follow orders. They had sworn to do whatever they were told by their superior officers (unless it was illegal), and their superior officers had done the same, all the way up to the first link in the chain of command, which is the President. It was the President’s word that got the invasion started, and the President’s authority that justified it.

So if the actions of Manson’s followers made him guilty of murder, then the actions of George W Bush’s followers have also made him guilty of murder.

Even worse, Charles Manson had very little in the way of guidance that he could have drawn on to make a better decision. He was the son of an alcoholic teenage prostitute, and so wasn’t raised to learn how to make good judgments. What’s George W Bush’s excuse for so callously ordering a military action that killed over a million people? He was the son of a president himself, so should have learned better judgment than anyone else.

Moreover, the people of the world demonstrated in no uncertain terms that they thought the invasion was a bad idea. Over a million people protested in London, and three million in Rome – still the largest protest in world history. The whole planet told George W Bush that what he proposed to do was going to be a humanitarian catastrophe – so he can’t say that he wasn’t warned by the world that he was making an error.

So if Charles Manson was worthy of all the hatred he endured because he was guilty of possessing a monstrously arrogant disregard to the value of human life, then George W Bush is worthy of a hundred thousand times more.

VJMP Reads: The Interregnum: Rethinking New Zealand I

The Interregnum: Rethinking New Zealand is a small book of essays that is for sale at the Volume bookstore in Nelson, by Bridget Williams Books. The blurb on the back asks the question of whether New Zealand’s political settlement is beginning to fray, and purports to “interrogate” the future from a youth perspective.

The first essay, by editor Morgan Godfery, is called “The Voices of A New Generation” and opens by relating an anti-TPPA demonstration in Auckland. It breathlessly describes the excitement of thousands of diverse people coming together to oppose the signing of the multilateral trade agreement.

Reading this piece, something about it speaks to the lack of purpose that the young generation now has. The fight against apartheid seemed meaningful at the time; it seemed a great evil was being fought. A law that says that a large section of the population are second-class humans, for no other reason than skin colour, seems like the sort of arbitrary and cruel treatment that everyone should be against.

But can the same be said of international trade? Who really understands it well enough to decide? And so what if “trade agreements are signed”?

By the fourth page of this essay there is already a Marx quote, which bodes poorly. The reader gets the sentiment that the new voice here is going to be an echo of the same social justice warriors seen overseas. If not, why oppose something as vague and nebulous as the TPPA, instead of protesting about poor wages, poor housing, poor mental health outcomes?

The essay finds its feet when it hones in on the real enemy: neoliberalism. Godfery mentions the damage done to the national psyche by the Mother of All Budgets, and it feels like he speaks for many when he says that the children condemned to poverty by Richardson’s Budget are now adults, some of us with our own children.

But again, this speaks to the confusion in the New Zealand Left. What to make of the fact that the signing of the TPPA was protested under a National Government, with many prominent Labour supporters in attendance, and then the Labour Government went and signed it anyway? No-one knows yet if Labour will get criticised for their evident support of neoliberalism, or whether people will let it pass.

This introductory essay declares that the book is for those who have “a fierce desire to radically reshape politics.” It proposes that instead of focusing on “returns on investment”, that we return to a politics of “higher principles and values”.

This is all very well, but the question that strikes one is: whose higher principles and values? Because usually when the working class votes for people promising to govern by higher principles, it turns out that those principles only apply to a chosen few groups, and if you’re not one of them then you’re “privileged” (“privileged” means “untermensch” in social justice speak”.

We can see this now with Jacinda Ardern’s decision to give Manus Island “refugees” her highest priority, while saying nothing about the Kiwis suffering from the illegal status of medicinal cannabis. Unfortunately for medicinal cannabis users, official victim status has so far eluded them, and so they continue to be ignored.

Concluding with half a dozen mentions of the word “love”, this essay promises that the book will make for interesting reading for the sake of political philosophy. However, it’s not possible to believe that a book that opens by quoting several Marxists could be entirely trustworthy or honest, even if it is earnest.

It remains to see what these higher principles are.