When New Zealand adopted a MMP electoral system in 1996, we based that system on the German model. Germany had already had decades of experience with MMP, and it was thought that we could learn from their lessons. As demographer Dan McGlashan will show in this essay, there are further lessons to be learned from the German system – including lessons about what the future might bring for New Zealand.
As can be seen from the image at the top of this page, recent opinion polling in Germany shows that the Establishment parties are bleeding support, while the alternative parties gain. Because the German system is more advanced and sophisticated than the New Zealand one, we can predict that phenomena that occur over there will soon be replicated over here. This is not so much true because of MMP as because of the fact that Germany and New Zealand are both part of a wider Western system.
Of concern to the Labour Party would be the fact that their German equivalent is currently polling at about 14%. The reason why the German SPD (Social Democratic Party) is doing so poorly is that they have abandoned the German working class in favour of identity politics – but the New Zealand Labour Party is in the process of making the same mistake.
Of hope to the Green Party would be the fact that their German equivalent is currently polling at about 23%. In fact, the German Green Party was the single highest-polling party in July, a fact that speaks of revolution. The main reason for their rise is the fact that the Greens never even pretended to represent the working class, which means that the large numbers of young people with university degrees have been able to find a home in them.
The major German conservative party, the CDU (Christian Democrat Union), has also seen a fall in fortune, although nowhere near as grievous as that of the social democrats. They are hovering around 27%, which probably reflects the relatively greater unwillingness of conservatives to abandon their party (Understanding New Zealand showed that the National Party had the strongest voting retention rate from one election to the next in New Zealand). It is still a marked decline from previous years.
The decline of the CDU is mirrored by the rise of the alt-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) Party, who are now polling at 13%. This party is frequently derided as being neo-Nazis on account of their strongly anti-Muslim sentiment. Some expect them to supplant the CDU on account of that the globalist parties are not conservative when it comes to cheap labour.
If we look at the German model and how it has turned out, we are able to make several predictions about how the New Zealand model will turn out. Two of these predictions stand out as particularly salient.
One is that the Establishment parties will do poorly – the New Zealand Labour Party will get sliced to pieces in coming years, and National will weaken heavily. The German SPD is already polling in the single figures in some states, and it’s clear that their message is resonating ever less with the electorate. The New Zealand Labour Party are steadfast globalists, despite that globalism destroys working-class wages, and rising nationalist sentiment among the working class will see Labour support decay.
If this happens, it will probably be put down to the incompetence of the Sixth Labour Government, but the truth will be that wider strategic and demographic changes make this all but inevitable. The Labour Party was founded by and for the white working class; having decided to no longer represent the white working class, they are in their death spiral.
This process is likely to heavily benefit the Greens, who will gladly take the now-middle-class young people who don’t identify with National, Labour or ACT. The Greens will also be the beneficiaries of that group of young people who, on account of class interests, would have voted National in previous generations, but who now are more concerned with virtue signalling over class.
In short, what’s happening is that the Establishment parties are losing support as those voters who have been propagandised to have faith in the Establishment die off, and who are then replaced by more cynical young voters who prefer the alternative parties. The Greens and the AfD already get 36% of the vote between them, which is almost as much as what the SPD and the CDU get between them.
The collapse of Labour will likely see its white voters turn to the Green Party on account of that they don’t identify with being working-class any more, its Pacific Islander voters turn to National as their religious sentiments clash with Labour’s globohomo agenda and its Maori voters turn to New Zealand First on account of that they feel abandoned by a Labour that panders ever more to refugees and urbanites.
A second prediction is that an alt-right movement will come to stake a meaningfully large presence.
In New Zealand, the lazy stereotype is that the strongest anti-immigrant sentiments are held by old white people who don’t have much experience in interacting with foreigners. This is mostly true when the anti-immigrant sentiments are held towards Asians and Islanders, which is to say that it was mostly true in the 1990s. By today, things are different.
In Europe, the new generation of anti-immigrant sentiments are held by young people who do have experience in interacting with foreigners. The fact is – although this will be strenuously denied by Marxists, slave moralists and equalitarians – interacting with another group will only improve sentiments towards them if those interactions are pleasant. If the interactions are unpleasant, sentiments towards that group will worsen.
The nature of the interactions between native Westerners and Muslim and African immigrants is radically different to the nature of interactions between native Westerners and immigrants from Asia and the Pacific Islands. Therefore, it can be predicted that, now that New Zealand is opening its borders to Muslim and African immigrants, sentiments towards immigrants in general will sour.
If this does happen, it will create an electoral opportunity for an anti-immigrant party along the lines of the German AfD. The AfD just took 27% of the vote in the regional elections in Brandenburg, and 23% in Saxony. These parts of Germany have fewer immigrants that other parts that have less AfD support, which suggests that at least some of the increasing support for the AfD comes from economic sentiments. But the economic outlook is grim.
Support for this idea comes from Sweden, which opened its borders to mass Muslim and African immigration 20 years ago. Today, the alt-right Sweden Democrats is the party with the best opinion polls. Should a decent alt-right party stand up in New Zealand, they could reasonably expect to get over 5% of the vote straight away.
In Understanding New Zealand, I showed that young conservative people are often more inclined to vote ACT than to vote National. The correlation between median age and voting ACT in 2017 was a mere 0.26, compared to 0.78 between median age and voting National in 2017. This suggests that the ACT Party could potentially surf the crest of this alt-right wave.
This newspaper has previously asked whether ACT would win from refocusing as the alt-right party, but the courage of the current ACT crew cannot be relied upon. One political trend that can be relied on absolutely for certain is that people will age, and for this reason we can predict that the right will eventually evolve into some form of the new right, despite their inherent disinclination to change.
There’s no guarantee that New Zealand will follow the German experience, but the same geopolitical and demographic factors that pushed them in that direction are also at play on us. That will probably mean that, over the coming decade, Labour weakens heavily, National weakens moderately, the Greens surge, and someone fills the demand for an alternative right-wing movement.
Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan and published by VJM Publishing, is the comprehensive guide to the demographics and voting patterns of the New Zealand people. It is available on TradeMe (for Kiwis) and on Amazon (for international readers).