Imperative, is an interesting word when it comes to politics, as it not only embodies an element of authority, but also what politicians consider the authoritative command. In the past we have trusted and accepted political direction more readily and New Zealanders are generally regarded as passive by nature and not inclined to rebel.
What we are currently seeing is a greater distance between politicians and the electorate driven by the left and right divide. Only one side can win this war, but within this political theatre there are multiple battles which hold fast to their own imperatives.
A well canvased example of this in New Zealand politics is immigration, although immigration tends to be seen strictly as a yes or no, needed or not needed, equation where politicians rely on specific prejudices to encourage their voting blocks.
If we look at the economic imperative, with regard to immigration, we find a non-emotive approach around the supply and demand of labour and the cost of labour, and the consequential impact on economic activity. This is where the conflict starts with what we might label the right-wing approach, although equally at odds with the country’s descendant population.
Looking at the imperative ideology of the left-wing, we currently see a download of the fundamental European dogma that has caused them so much disruption;
Although countries still exist in name within Europe, alongside the borderless structure of the EU, the borderless ideology demands …
– the free movement of labour
– the universal acceptance of qualifications regardless of origin
– that migrant workers should not be discriminated against by a preference towards that country’s native workforce.
This is the situation we are now facing from the Open-Borders Pact, the greatest irony of course, is that it was Winston Peters as Foreign Minister who signed us up to this, on behalf of the Coalition.
Now, I would suggest the imperative sits with the voters (does the patriotic imperative live or die) and should they take hold of the expression of what is important to NZ? Understanding this is something the major political parties fear, having to qualify their position more specifically with regard to immigration.
Will the left-wing rhetoric conflict with their ideology during the election campaign? Will the right-wing ideology stick to economic arguments because it doesn’t want to discuss the ‘morality and obligations’ commerce should uphold in training the next generation? (The learn on the job culture has historically been one of genuine interest, not one of a consequence of the job I got today, because I was the cheapest option)
While National and Labour try to steer away from a more difinitive conversation, how well these arguments are canvased will be determined by new parties such as TOP and particularly New Conservative who are making a significant appearance in current media.