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Friday, May 30, 2008

Clydesdale on Polynesian Immigrants in NZ

Greg Clydesdale a Massey University lecturer has published a paper here in NZ blaming Polynesian immigrants for the future economic demise of NZ. In an interview with a Tagata Pasefika reporter on You Tube Mr Clydesdale points out that to avoid this taking place NZ should stop bringing in Polynesians as the NZ system cannot support these immigrants. He further discusses that Polynesians are at the lower end of the socio-economic scale in this country. It must be pointed out that Polynesians such as Cook Islanders, Tokelauans and Niueans are at birth NZ citizens as a result of colonial rule. So who is he classifying as the Polynesian immigrants if these people are already NZ citizens at birth.
Let’s say he’s referring to Samoans and Tongans as the “Polynesian immigrants” as it isn’t clear in his research who he means. The Polynesians that were brought into NZ fifty years ago were brought in to work in factories and other low level jobs because local New Zealanders would not do those jobs themselves. As a result, now there are second and third generation Polynesian New Zealanders that were born here. They are university graduates and are working at all levels of the work force and in different areas. 50 years ago I would imagine another Clydesdale would have come up with the same outrageous argument. I think Mr. Clydesdale has his own prejudices that he’s put across in his paper and calling it an educated research. He carried on to say that the education system here may not be good enough to solve the problem but then decides that the education system shouldn’t be blamed. He generalised Polynesians until the reporter points out that he’s calling Poly-Kiwis as if they are not New Zealanders though these people were born here in NZ.
However I believe NZ immigration are very strict with their rules on who they bring into NZ. So who is to be blamed for the economic problem? Mr. Clydesdale also continues to say that NZ should take in more British immigrants rather than those from the Pacific. His argument being that British -immigrants are at a higher end of the socio economic scale rather than low-level skilled people plus they don‘t need resources such as housing as those from the Pacific. I know a lot of British immigrants here that work in the factories alongside their Polynesian counterparts. How can he compare British immigrants who come with the British pound which is more than double the Kiwi dollar to those from the Pacific?
Moreover Clydesdale seem to deem other professions as not as important in economic growth as that of engineers, scientists and technologists! So is he worthy of being a New Zealander then since he’s only lecturer and not exactly likely to contribute to production in this country?

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