A belated welcome to the New Year.
The Tuesday Club for the past couple of years has stopped in early December and started again after Waitangi Day. That enables us to recharge our batteries and think about lofty things like bar-b-ques, novels which have no purpose other than to entertain us, and maintaining the visiting schedule for out of town family and friends returning to their turangawaewae. Or us visiting them, which is always better.
Waitangi Day and the annual gathering at Ratana Marae starts the year in a reflective and treaty- focused manner. I always enjoy the reporting on these events and one day would like to attend both of them.
It’s election year and we will have to have our antennae in sharp focus as the way social media is manipulated these days, we will have to have a very sceptical view on what we are being fed. By all parties.
I was disgusted by the behaviour of the leader of the opposition at both Ratana Pa and Waitangi. He was belligerent and divisive at events which called for attendees to be reflective and positive. His behaviour came straight out of the copy book of the guys in Wellington who were involved in the Liberal Party campaign in Australia (and didn’t they end up with a really wonderful leader in PM Morrison) and the Conservative campaign in the UK.
These campaigns divided communities and either denied global warming, or fudged the discussion so that nothing was discussed in detail.
I don’t think the leader of the opposition is at heart a nasty person; and I doubt he will be able to carry off this sort of campaign. Being nasty doesn’t come to him naturally, and he will always look forced.
This year at the Tuesday Club we will continue inviting people with all sorts of opinions to debate the issues which affect this city and country. Our focus is admittedly liberal, but it will be hard for people to accuse us of being in either left or right camps. From time to time we will be in both.