Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Why I'm Thinking Seriously About Voting Mana

Because Mana is for poor people, and isn't afraid of alienating voters to say so. Because I respect Matt McCarten (and have finally forgiven him for taking my vote in the local election and then saying he hadn't wanted to be mayor in the first place), John Minto and Sue Bradford. I'm a little afraid of Annette Sykes, and that's good. And I enjoy Hone Harawira. Together, they sound to me like a Super-Party. Today, in response to a poll predicting four seats for Mana, Harawira said

"The poor need a voice. The poor need a team who will fight for them.
And if you were poor, which team would you want - Goff, Beaumont, Burns and Huo,
or Harawira, Sykes, Minto and Bradford?"

It really worries me when I see how much things cost at the supermarket. Vincent and I don't earn much compared with most people we know, but we don't have children, and we can afford concert tickets and beer and trips to Paeroa. We balk at paying what we do at our local supermarket for vegetables and cheese, but when they're expensive, we can still buy them. I hate knowing that for lots of people, going to the supermarket isn't like that. They don't buy any biscuits; they don't buy any snacks. They buy cereal. They buy cheap, fatty meat. I see them, the old people on their pensions, looking for the smallest packets of the cheap mince and packets of noodles that have more sodium than a young person should have. Vincent and I often eat vegetarian - by choice - and I know our vegetarian meals aren't necessarily less expensive than our meat meals.

I've started watching the leaders' debate and lost my train of thought now; now I'm thinking about Maori, and what NZ might be like if the dominant values were Maori and not Pakeha. I think it would be a country much closer to what I idealise; one where money isn't the most important thing. Anyway, debate's back on, so more tomorrow.

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