Understanding New Zealand: Turnout Rate of Party Supporters

What sort of political party supporter actually turns out to vote? It’s not as straightforward and simple as just old, rich, male and white. However, turnout rate can serve as a useful indicator of general disenfranchisement.

Interestingly, the correlation matrix gives us a clue about a line of information that is completely closed off to anyone running a simpler analysis: we can know which party has the supporters that are most likely to vote by looking at the correlation between party vote in each electorate and the turnout rate in that electorate.

It seems fair to assume that, all other things being equal, the turnout rate of any party’s supporters is roughly equal to the degree that those supporters feel their needs and desires will be taken seriously by the eventual representatives. After all, if your vote will not count for anything because your MP will ignore you anyway, why bother to cast it?

Perhaps more than any other set of correlations, this one tells us who is running the country. If you have money and wealth, you can vote knowing that whoever wins the election will listen to you out of natural shared solidarity. If you are disadvantaged – poor, physically or mentally ill, female in some cases, the wrong religion or race in many others, you can’t.

Unsurprisingly, there is a strong correlation between turnout rate in 2014 and voting for National – this was 0.76. The Labour one, at -0.67, was almost as strong in the other direction. This difference represented by this correlation arguably reflects the most fundamental political division in society – between the haves and the have-nots.

This correlation is large enough that we can predict the vast majority of people who do not turn out to vote are Labour supporters.

Reflecting that the average Green voter is significantly wealthier than the average Kiwi, there is a significant correlation between turnout rate and voting Green – this is 0.26. Probably this would be higher if it reflected the level of class privilege of the average Green voter, but because the average Green supporter is also so young the turnout rate is somewhat suppressed.

The turnout rate was, as it was for Labour, significantly negatively correlated with New Zealand First support. The correlation here was a moderately strong -0.40, which is possibly even a little less negative than one might have expected based on the income of the average New Zealand First voter. Even though the bulk of New Zealand First supporters are working-class Maoris and thus have a low turnout rate, the party has a core of elderly white voters who can be counted on to vote.

The turnout rate was moderately correlated with voting for the Conservative Party in 2014 – this was 0.55, easily the second highest of all the correlations between turnout rate and voting for a party. This is even though voting Conservative in 2014 did not have a significant correlation with median personal income.

The main reason for this is the strong correlation between voting Conservative in 2014 and median age, which was 0.75. Because old people vote at significantly greater rates than the young, and because old people are religious fundamentalists at significantly greater rates than the young, old people will vote for a party (like the Conservatives) that appeals to religious fundamentalism.

All of the parties that had a high proportion of Maori voters had a significantly negative correlation with turnout rate. The correlation between turnout rate and voting Maori Party in 2014 was -0.74, with voting Internet MANA it was -0.69, with voting Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party it was -0.68 and with voting New Zealand First it was -0.40.

None of these are surprising considering the strong negative correlation between turnout rate and being Maori (-0.74). It may be that the natural support levels of both the Maori Party and Internet MANA are closer to what the Conservative Party is pulling in, but because of massive disenfranchisement among Maori are unable to translate that support into seats in Parliament.

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This article is an excerpt from Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan, published by VJM Publishing in the winter of 2017.

The Four Faces of the Adversary

The four books of the Satanic Bible are named after four faces of the adversary, and the four that most readers would have a surface familiarity with. The Satanic Bible briefly draws a parallel with these names and with the four basic alchemical elements. This essay discusses that parallel at length.

Central to Luciferian or Satanic thought is the concept of the adversary. This is not, in essence, much different to the Abrahamist concept of the adversary as someone who opposes the will of God. The major difference is really the conception of the God that the adversary has rebelled against.

In Abrahamist faith, the will of God is perfect and any opposition to it is evil. Because any opposition to it is evil, anyone opposing it can righteously be destroyed. Because the will of God has to be interpreted by the priesthood, then anyone decreed to be an enemy by the priesthood can be righteously destroyed.

This line of reasoning obviously gives a lot of power to the priesthood, which is why that profession has been instrumental in rotting the brains of the rest of us for thousands of years.

Anyone rejecting that line of reasoning is necessarily a devil in the eyes of the priesthood and those they have hypnotised into doing their bidding. In cultures where the priesthood is dominant, they are able to criminalise opposition to their lies, as with blasphemy laws, mandatory dress laws for women and drug control laws.

The obscene degree of subservience demanded by the priesthood before they will cease their aggression against the populace causes many, many people to start to feel loyalty to the adversary. If God demands the genital mutilation of infant children and the total submission of women, then any person who has not been bred for slavery from birth will naturally oppose God.

Understandably, such a fundamental archetype as he who opposes God will manifest, in the Great Fractal, as a wide range of various beings, depending on the cultural context of whoever views him and their state of mind and individual frequency.

Satan is the archetypal demon of the element of Fire

The first book of the Satanic Bible – the Infernal Diatribe or the Book of Satan – is linked to fire. This is perhaps because fire is the most rebellious of all elements.

Like fire, Satan is seen by the Abrahamists as an exceptionally destructive force, because the world as created by their God was naturally perfect and so Satan, who wished to change it, naturally wished to destroy perfection.

This also explains why Satan is always at, or near, the top of the pantheon of those who identify with the adversary. After all, when the Biblical Satan was commanded by God to prostrate himself before Adam, Satan responded: “I am better than him. You created me from fire and created him from clay.”

The destructive effect of fire is not seen by Satanists as a thing that destroys the correct order of God. Generally it, and Satan, represent a liberating force that dissolves acid-like the foundations of corruption in the world.

The archetype of Lucifer is closer to aristocrat or philosopher-king than demon or ruler of Hell

The second book of the Satanic Bible is the book of Lucifer, which is associated with the sign of air. Lucifer is the Latin word for light-bearer, and so he also bears similarities with figures such as Prometheus, Mercury, Maui and even Jesus Christ.

Fittingly, the literary style of this book strikes a change from the fiery diatribe of the first. Instead of poetry it is comprised of intellectual essays, which are Luciferian in the sense that their iconoclastic style tear away the webs of lies that blind us and let the light of truth in.

Appropriate to an air sign, Lucifer represents the thinkers of the Earth. Not the thinkers of heaven, the theologists, who are the worst bullshitters of all, who compound lie upon lie upon lie like a blacksmith forging a weapon with layers of iron.

Rather, Lucifer represents the philosopher and the scientist, both of whom have had to fight for the right to tell the truth in the face of Abrahamist dogma.

Of course, that doesn’t matter for the Abrahamists. If the only acceptable moral position is complete and total submission to the every word of the priests, then so much as thinking for oneself is a sin, because it opens the door to possible subversion of the will of God.

Belial is the repulsive Lord of the Flies, also known as the Prince of Lies

The third book of the Satanic Bible is the book of Belial, otherwise known as Beliar by some in the Abrahamic tradition. The etymology of the world relates to “lacking value”. This is because the statements of Belial have no truth value – he is the father of lies.

It was said of Belial in Paradise Lost that “all was false and hollow” and that he “could make the worse appear / The better reason” – in other words, he told believable lies.

Naturally, if one is a liar oneself, and the objective is to bullshit the population into submission to your chosen God, then anyone telling the truth about you or your bullshit will have to be branded a liar for you to survive.

In this way Belial represents the adversary as scapegoat. If the population have been lied to so badly that they have become confused, then anyone who speaks the truth will appear to be speaking lies, and naturally because those lies are actually true they are also believable.

What are “believable lies” to the Abrahamist are often the stone-cold truth to the freethinker. In this sense Belial represents the courage to always speak the truth regardless of the social pressure that might be exerted in the other direction.

Belial is related to the element of Earth in the Satanic Bible, and he plays this role by way of being stable. As everything that lives rises from the Earth and falls back to the Earth, so is the truth about reality more fundamental than any lies told about it.

Who the Abrahamist calls Belial is he who brings people back down to Earth and to reality after they have been swept away by the lies, promises and threats of Abrahamism.

Leviathan represents the awesome and relentless power of the forces of Nature, which all freethinkers know will out

The fourth book of the Satanic Bible is the book of Leviathan. This is the face of the adversary when seen through the aspect of water. In this manner, water represents the emotions, which flow back and forth throughout the world, giving life where things had been too dry.

There is a strong ascetic streak to much of Abrahamism, especially in regards to sex. This asceticism is shared, not only by other religious traditions (in particular Buddhism), but also in regards to other avenues of worldly enjoyment, such as dancing, music, gambling and the interaction of unmarried men and women.

You name it, Abrahamists have tried to ban it – and the more enjoyable it was, the harder they tried. Even now, with all of dancing, music, prostitution and homosexuality legal, they continue to insist that the laws putting people in cages for cannabis offences are upheld for spurious reasons like protecting the mental health of the young.

There is a particular reason for this, and like most religious “culture” it has a superstitious origin. The essential delusion is that anything that feels good will cause a person to identify with the material world, and this – because the spiritual and material worlds are believed to be in constant opposition instead of harmony – will then make them become less spiritual and more like a vicious animal.

The reality that suffering causes a greater attachment to the material world than pleasure, because suffering when present is always at the forefront of the mind of the sufferer whereas pleasure is fleeting, is entirely lost on the followers of slave religions.

In this manner, Leviathan represents an entity like Dionysus, Pan, Mercury or Loki. You can thank Leviathan for every delicious recipe ever remembered, every lovemaking technique ever passed on, every joke worth repeating and every joyful ditty ever learned by heart.

One could say that there were as many faces of the devil as there are people who oppose their local conception of what God is. And in the right time and place that could be any of us.

Understanding New Zealand: Voting Patterns of European New Zealanders

Who do the honkies vote for? Most people could have guessed that there was a correlation between voting for the National Party in 2014 and being of European descent, but few would have guessed that it was quite as strong as 0.60. The correlation between voting Labour in 2014 and being of European descent is even stronger, but negative: -0.76.

These are strong correlations, and they ilustrate the degree to which the National Party upholds racial advantages as a consequence of upholding class advantages. Being of European descent has a correlation of 0.35 with median personal income, which conflates the effect of race and class in the National vote.

Voting for the Conservative Party in 2014 had a correlation of 0.46 with being of European descent, and the other party that had a significant positive correlation with being of European descent was the Greens – this was 0.24.

Some might find this latter point surprising considering that the Greens produce a lot of rhetoric about being left-wing and about supporting marginalised groups in society. But marginalised groups generally do not vote Green – they vote Labour. The correlation between voting Green in 2014 and median personal income is a significant 0.31.

This tells us that the Green Party is a curiosity in the paradoxical sense that it represents a class that does not often belong to the race it represents and a race that does not often belong to the class it represents.

Voting for any of the remaining four parties in 2014 has a negative correlation with being of European descent. Three of those four correlations can be explained simply by noting that they are parties which get a lot of Maori support: the ALCP (-0.15), the Maori Party (-0.35) and Internet MANA (-0.37).

The ACT Party stands apart from those three on that basis. The correlation between voting ACT in 2014 and being of European descent is a significantly negative -0.28. This suggests that there is a natural division on the right between the heavily European National and Conservative parties, and the heavily non-European ACT Party.

The natural division on the left, meanwhile, is between the also heavily European Green Party, and the moderately non-European Labour Party. Although this has more to do with education than class, it’s noteworthy that barring a token Maori in the leadership position, only Marama Davidson of the Green MPs has any non-European ancestry.

This is the basis for the observation that a National-Greens Government might be possible after 2017. Essentially this would be a European coup of the political system, knocking out the Maoris in NZF and Labour, the Pacific Islanders in Labour and the Asians in ACT.

Media commentators might talk about crucial demographics and the need to win them to capture the middle ground, but the fact is that the vast bulk of New Zealand voters are people of European descent and a small shift of the balancing point within this major demographic can have nationwide consequences.

European people love to vote, no doubt a reflection of their integration into the system and their confidence that their voices will be heard by the eventual representatives. The correlation between turnout rate in 2014 and being of European descent is a strong 0.71, which is enough to say that, as a general rule, white people vote.

Many might have been able to guess that; few could guess the extent that the flag referendum was a mission for people of European descent only. Turnout rate for the first flag referendum had a correlation of 0.85 with being of European descent, and turnout rate for the second flag referendum had a correlation of 0.88.

The correlation between being of European descent and voting to change the flag in the second flag referendum was 0.60 – exactly the same as the correlation between being of European descent and voting National in 2014. This further supports what we already know about the extent that the flag referendum was a National Party vehicle.

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This article is an excerpt from Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan, published by VJM Publishing in the winter of 2017.

Understanding New Zealand: ACT Voters

Thought by most to be the big money party, ACT cuts an odd figure on the New Zealand political landscape. Although there is a fairly strong correlation between voting ACT in 2014 and net personal income (0.36), this is considerably less than the correlation between voting National in 2014 and net personal income (0.53).

This tells us that the average ACT voter is not as wealthy as the average National voter, despite the reputation of the ACT Party as the party of millionaires only. Where ACT manages to cleave off votes from National appears to be by targeting the specially ambitious, the specially driven, and those with a specially low level of solidarity with other Kiwis.

Voting ACT in 2014 had a correlation of 0.57 with having a Master’s degree, and one of -0.64 with having no academic qualifications. ACT voters were also much less likely to be on a benefit than average: voting ACT in 2014 had a correlation of -0.30 with being on the pension, of -0.38 with being on the unemployment benefit and of -0.59 with being on the invalid’s benefit.

The two occupations that correlated significantly with voting for ACT in 2014 were professionals (0.39) and sales workers (0.27). Perhaps surprisingly, there was no significant correlation between voting ACT in 2014 and being a manager (0.06). Managers tend overwhelmingly to vote National and are usually Kiwi-born.

All of the correlations with working-class occupations were significantly negative: technicians and trades workers (-0.39), community and personal service workers (-0.47), machinery operators and drivers (-0.52) and labourers (-0.61).

In terms of industry choice, ACT voters seem to gravitate to the sort of job where one is paid on commission. The strongest correlation between voting ACT in 2014 and the industry of the voter was with wholesale trade (0.66). Other strong correlations were with financial and insurance services (0.59) and professional, scientific and technical services (0.50).

Notably, there is a significant negative correlation with voting for ACT in 2014 and working in the healthcare industry (-0.29). So can guess that the wealthy foreigners voting ACT are not often doctors, psychiatrists or psychologists – this sort of person tends to vote Green.

Some might note with curiosity that the correlation between voting ACT in 2014 and being born overseas is a very strong 0.78. This is much higher than for any other party; in fact, it would almost be fair to say that ACT is a foreigner’s party.

Voting for ACT in 2014 has a significant negative correlation both with being of European descent (-0.28) and with being of Maori descent (-0.42). It is the only party of all of them for which this is true.

By contrast, the correlation between being of Asian descent and voting ACT is a very strong 0.85. Given that there are many more Asians in New Zealand than ACT voters, this correlation suggests that the majority of ACT voters are foreign-born Asians.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, then, the party with which voting for ACT has the strongest negative correlation is with New Zealand First: this is -0.55. It’s probably fair to say that very few ACT voters are particularly patriotic about New Zealand.

Other negative correlations exist between voting ACT in 2014 and voting ALCP (-0.45), voting Internet MANA (-0.25) and the Maori Party (-0.29). Given the strength of the negative correlation between voting ACT in 2014 and being Maori, none of these are really surprising.

The only party to have a significant positive correlation with voting ACT in 2014 was National, for which it was 0.35. None of the correlations with the other three were signficant: Labour -0.19, Greens -0.06 and Conservative 0.13.

ACT voters are often religious, but not Christian. Voting ACT in 2014 and being Christian is almost perfectly uncorrelated (-0.01). Given what we know about the tendency of ACT voters to be foreign-born we can predict that the religions with the strongest correlations with voting for the ACT Party are those with the weakest foothold here.

And so, the correlations between voting for the ACT party and belonging to a religion are significantly positive if that religion is Buddhism (0.85), Hinduism or Islam (both 0.50) or Judaism (0.42).

Of all the personal annual income brackets detailed in the Parliamentary Profiles, the top three have a significant positive correlation with voting for ACT in 2014, and the higher someone goes the stronger the correlation. For an income of $70-100K the correlation was 0.33, for an income of $100-150K the correlation was 0.43 and for an income above $150K it was 0.44.

The only other income bracket with a significant positive correlation with voting ACT is that of ‘Loss or No Income’ – here the correlation is 0.32. This can easily be explained by the number of entrepreneurs who are still losing money, and it might be a major reason why the correlation between median personal income and voting ACT is less than it is with the National Party.

A picture starts to emerge of the typical ACT voter as the sort of foreigner who found their home country too economically restrictive for their own ambitions, so they came to New Zealand to work long hours, usually on commission, and hopefully not have to contribute to a social safety net that neither them nor anyone they care about should ever have to rely on.

What makes the ACT Party different to a true libertarian party is their emphasis on economic freedom at the expense of social freedom. Their website is full of rhetoric calling for greater punishments for burglaries but does not mention cannabis law reform. This might lose them half of their votes, but if the intent was to be a National Party support partner it could make co-operation easier.

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This article is an excerpt from Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan, published by VJM Publishing in the winter of 2017.

Understanding New Zealand: Voting Patterns of the Religious I

Many people are aware of the long-standing alliance between conservative forces and religion. Indeed, the party with the strongest correlation between voting for them and being Christian was the Conservative Party, which was 0.37.

The Conservative Party of New Zealand appeals to much of the same sentiment as the Christian Heritage Party when it was run by now convicted child molester Graham Capill.

Christians are also significantly more likely to vote for the National Party – the correlation here is 0.29. This is significant but barely so, and perhaps even less so once one considers that this correlation can be well explained by the fact that both Christians and National voters tend to be older than average.

However, this is not an area where the Labour Party forms a natural counterweight. Voting Labour in 2014 has a correlation of 0.10 with being Christian. Neither does New Zealand First – voting for them and being Christian has a correlation of -0.11. Neither of these two are significant.

The significant one is between voting Green in 2014 and being Christian: this is a very strong -0.57. This suggests that the religious see very, very little merit in what the Greens have to offer.

Although this is true, the likely reason for it is that many Green voters are either young students – who are the group least likely to be Christian – and many who are older have postgraduate degrees in the sciences, the holding of which has a significant negative correlation with being Christian.

Many are already aware of the widespread cynicism of Maoris towards Christianity, which is often seen as a pack of lies that was told to confuse them while their land could be stolen. Not surprisingly, then, being Christian has a significant negative correlation with all of the parties that have heavy Maori support, apart from New Zealand First.

Being Christian has a correlation of -0.44 with voting Maori Party in 2014, -0.41 with voting ALCP and -0.40 with voting Internet MANA.

Because there are so many Christians – slightly fewer than 50% of the population – it’s worth taking a look at the next level down.

At this level, Anglicans seem to form the foundation of the national freemasonry. Being Anglican has a correlation of 0.41 with voting National in 2014, one of 0.34 with voting Conservative and one of -0.59 with voting Labour.

To all other parties Anglicans are mostly indifferent. The correlation between being Anglican and voting ALCP in 2014 was -0.01, with voting New Zealand First it was 0.17, with the Greens it was -0.06, with Internet MANA it was -0.07, with ACT it was -0.23 and with the Maori Party it was -0.06. None of these are significant.

Their eternal enemies, the Catholics, are predictably therefore more internationalist. There is a significant postive correlation between being Catholic and voting Labour in 2014 (0.28), and with voting ACT (0.24).

Also predictably for a religion that has a significant negative correlation with both being European and being Maori, being Catholic has a significant negative correlation with voting for New Zealand First in 2014 – this was -0.44. Other negative correlations existed between being Catholic and voting for the ALCP (-0.27) and voting Conservative (-0.26).

Presbytarians, for their part, seem like a kind of less Maori-friendly Anglican. The correlation between voting National in 2014 and being Presbytarian is almost identical with that of being Anglican – this is 0.40. The major difference is that the correlation betwen voting Labour and being Presbytarian is a mere -0.22, which is not significant.

The correlations between being Presbytarian and voting for any of the Maori-heavy parties were negative. With voting Internet MANA it was -0.40 and with voting Maori Party it was -0.37.

These correlations reflect the degree to which Presbytarianism is more common in the Southern South Island, which was settled much more heavily by Scots than by the English and where few Maoris live.

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This article is an excerpt from Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan, published by VJM Publishing in the winter of 2017.

The Four Realms of Human Awareness

Dividing the Great Fractal along two particular masculine-feminine axes gives us four realms of human awareness. These axes arise in response to two fundamental questions about any new piece of knowledge that are natural for a conscious entity to ask themselves as reality becomes more apparent after the birth of a physical body.

The first question is “Is this knowledge actual knowledge or is it a lie masquerading as knowledge?” The second question is “To what area of existence does this knowledge pertain?”

The first question gives us a basic division into truth and falsehood. The second question gives us a basic division into physical and metaphysical.

In the quadrant corresponding to both truth and physical, we have the realm of knowledge we call science. Human awareness probably entered this realm in conjunction with the mastery of fire, because it was not until then that the scientific method became necessary.

It was necessary for the mastery of fire because we had to learn, by trial and error for the most part, that dryness of the air was a factor that determined the possibility of starting a fire, as was the degree of contrast in terms of hardness of the two woods that were rubbed together, as was the temperature of the embers created by the friction.

This primitive scientific methodology led to the invention of the bow drill – a technological leap as ingenious as anything humanity has taken since, and one that increased our chances of survival in nature by more than any other. All scientists are the spiritual descendants of those early shamans who had the courage to master fire.

In the quadrant of truth crossed with metaphysical, we have philosophy. This arguably preceded the mastery of fire. More likely, though, it arose as a consequence of the leisure time that itself was created as a consequence of the massively increased efficiency of food consumption afforded by the ability to cook food in fire and therefore pre-digest it.

In other words, because eating cooked food was hyper-efficient it gave early man an opportunity to relax, and this brought with it consideration of basic existential questions like “What the fuck is going on here?”

The advent of philosophy massively increased human survival prospects because it allowed us to think ahead in a rational manner. This naturally led to an appreciation of the cycles of nature such as the seasons and the tides, and the migration patterns of the game animals upon which nomadic tribes depended.

These two realms of human awareness increased human survival chances so much that our population began to swell to a degree that could not be sustained by the hunting and gathering practices of the time. This overpopulation naturally led to increased competition for the now relatively scarcer resources.

It would have soon been apparent that this increased population led to increased violence. There was one way around it, though: there is one way to compete with one’s fellows without using violence, and that is by telling lies.

Science and philosophy come naturally to men. To get them to behave in an unnatural manner, one needs politics and religion.

This mixture of the physical world and falsehood is the realm of human knowledge that we know as politics.

The earlier developmental stages of politics can be observed in the ever-shifting alliances of chimpanzee troops. Essentially the objective of politics is to position oneself or one’s group so that one is in an optimal position to compete for scarce resources without violence.

For example, it can be seen that in our modern civilisation that the men of silver generally have an easier time attracting fertile women than the men of iron. This is because being of silver – a part of which having the capacity to derive advantage by telling lies – is more closely associated with having a capacity for resource acquisition.

The politics of today have arranged the minds of the rest of us so that if the man of iron tries to take what he wants by force, as he did in prehistoric times without anyone being able to stop him, he will be outgunned by the Police.

The simplest way, however, to arrange a group of people so that they will do whatever you tell them is with religion. This is why the intersection of the metaphysical and falsehood is the quadrant of religion.

That philosophy and religion are the opposing poles of one axis can be understood by knowing that the purpose of philosophy is to enlighten and the purpose of religion is to confuse.

Make no mistake – the purpose of religion is to confuse its victims into passivity, from where they can be herded wherever their shepherd desires. This is why religious scriptures are absolutely riddled with contradictions.

These contradictions, such as the Biblical admonitions to both love thy neighbour and to destroy all enemies of God, have not arisen because the authors of these texts were philosophically unsophisticated.

Quite the opposite. It has been known since Babylon that if you can rot the minds of the populace with moral confusion they will become compliant with any decree from a ruler, as long as that decree promises to impose the order that all confused people desperately crave.

Telling lies, therefore, is an end in itself to both political and religious rulers. This point cannot be overemphasised if one wishes to make sense of the world.

Understanding New Zealand: Demographics of the New Zealand-Born

Predictably, the ethnic groups that correlate the strongest with being born in New Zealand were those whose waves came here first. With being born in New Zealand, being Maori has a correlation of 0.70, and being European has a correlation of 0.33. Being a Pacific Islander has a correlation of -0.39 with being born in New Zealand, and being Asian has one of -0.88.

It’s not really surprising that Maoris are most likely to be born in New Zealand when one considers that there are very few Maoris born overseas who could have opportunity to move here. It’s also predictable, given that the second great wave of settlement was European, that people born here are more likely than not to be European.

Some might be surprised at the absence of a strong negative correlation with being a Pacific Islander and being born in New Zealand, since Islanders are generally portrayed as immigrants in popular culture. However, the start of the Pacific Islander migration to New Zealand was in the early 1970s, and it has now been forty years since then. So many of the Pacific Islanders born in New Zealand will also have parents (or one parent) that are born here.

One correlation that might surprise many is the one of -0.24 between being born in New Zealand and being Christian. After all, we often hear rhetoric about how this is a Christian country. But it’s more Kiwi to be a post-Christian than an actual Christian.

However, there was a moderately strong correlation between being born in New Zealand and being Anglican – this was 0.42.

Being a Spiritualist or New Ager has a correlation of 0.44 with being born in New Zealand, and having no religion at all has a correlation of 0.49 with being born here. These are moderately strong correlations, and reflect the degree to which more mature cultures tend to reject the more juvenile religious traditions.

Being Christian had a correlation of 0.46 with being a Pacific Islander, which is moderately strong, and allows us to conclude that immigration from the Pacific Islands has left New Zealand a much more Christian country than it otherwise would have been.

Perhaps predictably, being born in New Zealand had a correlation of -0.38 with voting to change the flag in the second flag referendum. It’s understandable that those born in the country will have more loyalty to its traditions than those born outside of the country. For some of the voters in the referendum, who had recently moved to New Zealand, the current flag didn’t hold enough emotional investment to overweigh the National Party flag.

The New Zealand-born are also significantly poorer than immigrants as a whole. The correlation between being born in New Zealand and median personal income was -0.32. The major reason for this is that our immigration policy heavily discriminates against potential immigrants who are not able, or less able, to pay their way. Generally a person needs a high-paying profession or a fat wad of cash to be allowed to immigrate here.

The strongest correlation between being born in New Zealand and any income bracket was the $25-30K bracket – here there was a correlation of 0.79. With being born outside of New Zealand the strongest correlation was 0.40 with the $100-150K bracket.

Given that, it is entirely unsurprising that there is a strong correlation between being born here and having no academic qualifications – this is 0.74. The flip side of this is, predictably, that the correlation between being born in New Zealand and having a Master’s degree is -0.59.

It’s easy to believe, then, that the correlation between being born in New Zealand and being on the unemployment benefit is 0.53, hefty enough to be more than significant. Even more so, understandly, is the correlation between being born in New Zealand and being on the invalid’s benefit, which is 0.74. This strong correlation can be explained simply by considering how difficult it would be for anyone incapacitated enough to go on an invalid’s benefit to successfully immigrate.

Following the general trend that immigration is easier the higher one’s social class, it can be observed that being born in New Zealand correlates significantly with working-class occupations. With working in healthcare the correlation is 0.57, with agriculture, forestry and fishing it is 0.55, with manufacturing it is 0.46 and with healthcare and social assistance it is 0.45.

Correspondingly, the correlation between being born overseas and working in financial and insurance services is 0.61, with wholesale trade it is 0.53, with professional, scientific and technical services it is 0.51 and with information media and telecommunications it is 0.48.

Smoking patterns fall along the lines one might predict once it is understood that immigrants to New Zealand are generally more middle-class than the natives, and that usually only people who are a bit hard done by smoke tobacco. The correlation between being born in New Zealand and being a regular smoker was 0.75, and with having never smoked it was -0.81. Considering that smoking is highly correlated with being Maori this is not especially exciting.

New Zealand-born Kiwis, though, are significantly more likely to bike to work – the correlation between the two was 0.28.

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This article is an excerpt from Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan, published by VJM Publishing in the winter of 2017.

The Peter Pan Generation

The Peter Pan Generation believes that whatever it wishes to be true is true. Whatever would be the most personally gratifying interpretation of reality is the natural one to, not only believe in, but to insist upon, as if the rest of us had a duty of care towards them akin to that of their biological mother.

This has led to many adopting the attitude that they can believe whatever they like with no obligation to pay any regard to consensual reality. If reality disagrees with me, it is wrong, and therefore has the obligation to change.

We can observe the consequences of this in the form of delayed adulthood, in particular a child-like total failure to accurately appraise the degree of danger in the world and to respond accordingly.

For this reason, some call them the ‘Special Snowflake Generation’. This was to distinguish them from their predecessors in Generation X, for whom Fight Club was a seminal influence on the collective identity, and who were told in which “You are not a special and unique snowflake. You are the all-singing, all-dancing crap of the world.”

The generation who came after X, who weren’t latchkey kids, who were brought up with technology rather than catching the wave of the disruption it caused, who were bathed in hysteria about Islamists rather than the very real threat of the USSR and who, crucially, didn’t hear the message of Fight Club – they are the snowflakes, so named for their striking fragility.

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The Peter Pan Generation doesn’t like being told no

If there is an overarching narrative in one’s social circles that rich white men are the devil and everyone opposed to The Man is on the same side and knows they’re on the same side and feels solidarity with each other, then one might be horribly surprised to find some of these people on your side want to throw gays off buildings.

Yet this is the natural consequence of the unnatural degree of naivety and unprecedented delayed infancy that is due, in a large part, to the absence of war or belief in the need for war or to prepare, either physically or mentally, for it.

Those of us in Generation X may not have had World War II or Vietnam to contend with, but we did grow up hearing the death throes of the Soviet Union and, with it, an entire paradigm that had until then given the world meaning. We were still brought up under the very real possibility that we might end up going to war one day.

Not so the snowflakes. War – like Hillary Clinton losing the last election – is unthinkable simply because they do not want it. There is no concept of war coming to them. After all, the Muslims blowing up Western targets are opposed to the same Man that is oppressing us!

And because those Muslims are opposed to the same patriarchal capitalist interests as the young and trendy there couldn’t possibly be any problem with letting in a couple of dozen million of them – they’re just like us, right?

As any regular reader of this column knows, all things comes in time, and the yin always turns into yang.

A sense of entitlement, in an indifferent world where you’re going to die, is like the potential kinetic energy created by raising a heavy object against gravity. Sooner or later, it is going to fall back to its natural starting point, and the further away it was before it fell the more noise and violence it will make on the way down.

It’s too early to tell what will slap the Peter Pan Generation awake in the way that 9/11 slapped awake Generation X, that Vietnam slapped awake the Boomers, that World War II slapped awake the Silent Generation, and the Great Depression slapped awake the Greatest Generation.

But what we do know is that nature will out, and that nature loves to punish stupidity with violence.

Political Gnosticism: Why a Demiurge Would Have Created Both a Left and Right Wing

Of all the world-hating, female-fearing, life-denying cults that sprang up in the wake of the Curse of Abraham, one of the most interesting is Gnosticism. As far as Abrahamic cults go, it’s unusually moderate, and its adherents appear to have achieved a far higher level of general spiritual awareness than the others. It’s worth taking a closer look at.

Gnosticism might not even really be an Abrahamic cult, as the sentiments that led to its creation may predate Abraham and go all the way back to Zoroaster, but the common interpretation of it nowadays is in the Christian context, as it was codified in the Christian Syria and Egypt of the second century A.D.

We may never really know if this movement was started by Christians who accidentally got close to the truth or if it was started by people who knew the truth and therefore knew that they had to modify it to fit a Christian paradigm for it to be accepted. Therefore we cannot judge if the Gnostics basically had it right or wrong (at least not here).

The essentials are this: there exists a unified, remote, supreme force that is considered a deity. From this deity various lesser forms have emanated. It is one of these forms – known as the demiurge – that has created our material world. In some schools of Gnosticism this demiurge is considered merely imperfect – in others, outright evil.

The essential idea that the world as it appears to the senses is not the full story is an idea that is shared with many other esoteric traditions. On the face of it there are similarities with the Hindu concept of Maya.

Let’s leave aside what we know about consciousness and the contents of consciousness for now. This essay posits a simple argument: any demiurge intelligent enough to have created the world in which we find ourselves wouldn’t do anything so simple and easy to outwit as merely maintaining the illusion of a material world.

A clever demiurge would create two competing illusions, one masculine and one feminine. In this manner, the vast majority of people will spend all their time and wit trying to figure out which of the masculine or feminine illusions are correct, never suspecting that they were both shadows cast by one black fire.

This is a far more accurate picture of our world that to posit simply truth and illusion. There is not only truth and illusion, but truth within illusion, and enough so to make it far more powerful an illusion.

After all, if we were merely trapped in an illusion, then knowing the truth would be a simple matter of outlining the illusion and then looking at its opposite.

A clever demiurge might create just the one material world, but it would be created in a way such that there were at least two entirely different interpretations of it, and therefore conflict. This conflict would itself intensify the power of the illusion, as it would force all of us in the material world to take it seriously or suffer and die.

The most obvious way to understand this is to look at modern politics from a Gnostic viewpoint.

Most of us agree that there is only one material world, but, by way of example, consider these two competing perspectives. If one looks at the world in a feminine way it is natural to conclude that the primary imperative was to co-operate. If one looks at the world in a masculine way it is natural to conclude that the primary imperative was to compete.

This can lead to two entirely different attitudes to life, which naturally cause their bearers to come into conflict. After all, if someone is truly committed to competition there is no way to co-operate with them short of abject submission.

If one takes a fundamentally feminine perspective it may be that one looks to co-operate first and foremost and is thus likely to end up supporting a social democrat party. This will inevitably lead one into conflict with anyone taking a fundamentally masculine perspective, because this latter group will resent paying the taxes demanded by the social democrats.

If one takes a fundamentally masculine perspective it may be that one looks to compete first and foremost and so ends up supporting a conservative party, and so comes into conflict with those taking a fundamentally feminine perspective, because this latter group resents the inequality, coercion and social decay demanded by organising society for optimal capital production.

The demiurge may have achieved all this by emanating from itself lesser demiurges. Perhaps there’s a left wing demiurge making us want to do stupid things like let millions of Muslims in, and a right wing demiurge making us want to do stupid things like spend our children’s education money on a giant bronze statue of Jesus.

If any of this is true, the only way to find absolution is to reject entirely the belief that politics is a lens through which the truth appears. The left wing tells half truth and half lies, and the right wing simply tells the truth where the left lies, and lies where the left tells the truth.

Understanding New Zealand: Men and Women

The statistics we have examined so far have gone down into some fine details, but a correlation matrix is also useful for giving us information about high-level categories, such as men and women. What can the elementary gender division tell us about Kiwis?

Some points that stand out are ones that were already fairly well known. Men are slightly wealthier than women – the correlation between being a man and net personal income was 0.23. Also, to continue the general theme of minor social advantage, the correlation between being a man and voting in the 2014 General Election was 0.29.

Perhaps less well known is that men really like the National Party. The correlation between voting National in 2014 and being male was 0.35, which was significant. This was mirrored on the centre-left: the correlation between voting Labour in 2014 and being female was 0.31.

Neither of those statistics is surprising if the reader is aware of the many parallels between masculinity and conservatism, in particular the desire for the maintenance of a relatively high degree of order.

Likewise, there are clear parallels between femininity and social democracy, in particular the desire for a relatively egalitarian distribution of wealth and social status.

There are small, not significant correlations between voting Green and being male (0.10) and between voting New Zealand First and being female (0.21).

Of some interest, women smoke slightly more than men – being female has a correlation of 0.19 with being a regular smoker, although this is not significant. Possibly this reflects the value of nicotine as a treatment for certain anxiety and depression-related mental disorders, which women tend to suffer from at a greater rate than men.

Looking at gender differences in personal income and choice of employment, several interesting patterns reveal themselves.

One is that women are significantly more likely to be on any of the four benefits this study looks at. Although the correlation between being female and being on the pension was not significant (0.03), the others were much greater. Between being female and being on the student allowance the correlation was 0.21, with being on the unemployment benefit it was 0.39, and with being on the invalid’s benefit it was 0.26.

Being male was not significantly correlated with net personal income – the strength of this was 0.23, which was on the boundary of significance. However, looking at the next level down reveals a few patterns.

The personal income band most strongly correlated with being male was the $50-60K band. Here there was a correlation of 0.22. The female equivalent was the $5-10K band. There was a correlation of 0.21 between being female and being in this band.

Despite that males are generally slightly wealthier than females, this is not reflected in either of the $100K+ income bands. In both of these bands there is no correlation with gender.

This suggests a complicated pattern, but the general trend is that the higher the social status of any given line of work, the closer to gender parity the pay will be. This could reflect a lot of things.

Perhaps the most notable clue to answering this question comes from the fact that more men are managers – the correlation between being male and working as a manager was 0.49 – but more women are professionals.

This is an interesting division because it suggests that there is a difference in how men and women get to the highly compensated jobs.

Men are more likely to rise up to the top jobs from a lower starting point, a path not as easy for women because of the demands of childrearing. However, women are more likely to get a good education, valuable skills and therefore a high starting point, from where further advancement is not necessary or desired, or as heavily impacted by taking time off for children (many family GPs are women who fall into this category).

This might explain why there is no gender gap for the top income brackets, but explaining why there is a gender gap for the lower income brackets is a different matter.

Most of the reason is that men, whether by will or fortune, tend to choose industries that pay better than the ones women choose. Being male is significantly correlated with working in agriculture, construction, accommodation, and rental, hiring and real estate services, and these jobs tend to pay better than jobs in education and training and healthcare and social assistance, which correlate significantly with being female.

Perhaps the statistic that all gender warriors will find the least objectionable is that the people in the truly plum industries of professional, scientific and technical services, information media and telecommunications and financial and insurance services have the weakest correlation with being either male or female.

Generally there were no strong correlations between men and women in New Zealand, which one might expect from a generally free and liberal post-industrial secular democracy. The strongest correlation of all in this study was the completely unsurprising one between being female and being a single parent, which was 0.52.

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This article is an excerpt from Understanding New Zealand, by Dan McGlashan, published by VJM Publishing in the winter of 2017.