MENZ Issues: news and discussion about New Zealand men, fathers, family law, divorce, courts, protests, gender politics, and male health.

‘Putin’ things back the way they were

Filed under: General — Downunder @ 8:01 am Sun 15th December 2013

This is an article from Russia which I found interesting for two reasons. Firstly it talks about some of the issues that confront us, and secondly it is a comparison to the campaign Colin Craig is running.

Russia’s power is moral and military says Putin is based on a state of the nation address given this week by Putin, but looking past his comments directed at the West there are interesting aspects raised in respect of the internal battle over their social contract.

He [Putin] used the occasion to reinforce his image as a champion of conservative values, intended to appeal to his traditional supporters in working-class areas outside big cities …

Looking at the increasing lack of political engagement by New Zealand voters – we’re heading down toward the 50% mark of eligible voters in national elections – Colin Craig could test the level of interest amongst the politically disinterested for a return to traditional values.

He called for unity among ethnic groups, greater patriotism and attempts to increase the population.

It will be interesting to see how ethnic groups in New Zealand react to a similar religious/family/business political proposal from Colin Craig. Whether our ethnic groups, Maori in particular, choose to vote conservatively rather than racially and Polynesian voters move their traditional support from Labour to Conservative.

Families with three children, a rarity in Russia, should be the norm, he said.

Russia is set be one of the emerging economies over the next decade, although this depends very much on population growth, an issue that is having a very real effect in leading Western economies such as Japan. He is talking Mum, Dad and the kids – something that New Zealand has become very distracted from with our politicians focused extensively on political identity rather than family unity.

Putin, 61, has frequently appealed to such values since he returned to the presidency for a third term in May 2012. He has portrayed the Church as a moral guide for a nation unmoored by the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union.

The church is vocally and generally visibly absent in New Zealand – there is the occasional media-focus on a billboard in central Auckland. The effect has been profound in both New Zealand and England with churches selling their land to survive. I see this call from Putin as a direct call to the religious orders to re-establish their authority and place within the separation of powers. Moral authority should be guided by the Church and not by the Judiciary.

Of course these things in New Zealand would require law changes. We have moved far away from the type of political community that Putin is talking about.

He faces criticism in the West over a law banning ‘gay propaganda’ which critics say encourages discrimination against homosexuals.

But with the head of the Russian Orthodox Church sitting in the front row of the Kremlin’s St George Hall, he shrugged that off, saying his views would increase respect for Russia.

“We know there are ever more people in the world who support our position in defence of the traditional values that for centuries have formed the moral foundation of civilisation,” he said, putting “traditional family values” top of the list.

I don’t think he could have been much clearer in signalling his international support for countries that have retained traditional family values and his opposition to countries that have followed the path of identity politics.

He used the occasion to reinforce his image as a champion of conservative values … following protests against his rule led by young urban professionals.

I think we could say the same thing about New Zealand young urban professionals misguided and outspoken feminists.

The difference as I see it between New Zealand and Russia is that a decision has already been made, whether this is by Putin alone or an overwhelming majority of those that hold the reins of power, that is the direction that Russia will take and with whom Russia’s moral allegiances will lay, whereas in New Zealand this is still very much a matter for informed debate, and not so much democracy, but the choice of the politically disinterested to exercise their political will if they feel strongly enough about our country having taken a wrong turn.

It poses some interesting questions for the media, most of whom are ‘young urban professionals’ and how they will choose to report political news.

The debate has risen, if it is not still on the political agenda and a matter of serious consideration at the next election then I would suggest the prospects for men and family in this country will suffer even more than they have to date.


  1. This is an interesting article about social mobility entitled The Myth of the American Dream.

    Something we’ve known for years, and MENZ has been a window to many campaigns that have supported and promoted the view that family is central to society. Interestingly, we are now seeing this concept starting to be expressed in analysis, statistics and reported as a valid option, rather than the defeated past.

    Families: Having a stable home life is also associated with the ability to climb the economic ladder, said Corak. The United States tends to have higher rates of divorce, single-parent homes, and teenage pregnancy than many other industrialized counties.

    What is being expressed here, of course, is the concept of traditional family, not compliant and harassed men paying child support to state or mother, and fighting, if they choose or can afford it, in the Family Court to see their children, always associated with the assumption that those who don’t bother fighting in the family court over their children, have abandoned them.

    Comment by Downunder — Sun 15th December 2013 @ 8:44 am

  2. Millions more for benefit heroes

    Extended family members who care for children who are not their own will get an extra $35 million in benefits, the Government will announce today.

    More than 12,400 kids in New Zealand are cared for by relatives, often grandparents, when their parents are either incapable or unwilling to raise them …

    I can remember when we started to keep track of children in the child support system and when the numbers clocked over 100,000.

    Around 8500 foster parents already receive an unsupported child benefit, with the Government paying out about $111.5m between July 2011 and July 2012.

    I am wondering whether this includes all CYFS carers, but it certainly wouldn’t include the CYFS adoption programme where financial responsibility is assumed by the new parents; how many other children in CYFS are not included in this number.

    What is the true number of children living outside of broken families?

    Comment by Downunder — Sun 15th December 2013 @ 9:11 am

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