Not Ministerial language but . . .

Immigration Minister Michael Woodhouse posted on Facebook:

Plenty of Q&A from attendees at the annual NZ Association of Migration and Investment conference today.

Michael Woodhouse MP's photo.

He got several responses, one of which was:

Mark Lambert Here’s a question n answer in one, when are we going to get tough n say no more immigrants? And if yr answer is why then you need to go to specsavers, then remove yr self from my page ….

To which he replied:

Michael Woodhouse MP I think you’ll find you’re on my page you redneck.

Several others responded, most of whom had realised what the first commenter hadn’t – he’s in the UK and the Minister is a New Zealand MP.

The commenter’s last comment included several expletives and the hope he’d meet the Minister one day to which he got this response:  unlikely, NZ has a strict no dickheads rule.

It isn’t Ministerial language but sometimes giving in to the temptation to respond in that way is understandable.

16 Responses to Not Ministerial language but . . .

  1. Mr E says:

    I don’t see this as appropriate behaviour for an MP.
    I could understand it from Joe(sephine) Public. But not an MP.

    I recognise that some will disagree with me.


  2. Will says:

    All I can see is that he avoided answering the question. It was poorly worded and aggressive, which allowed the minister to get away with evasion, but that will not always be the case. He will need to do better in the future, because this isn’t going away.


  3. Dave Kennedy says:

    I agree with Mr E and Will. I do think we need to be more proactive with how we manage immigration, especially when a good number of immigrants are allowed in because of an apparent “chef” shortage. It needs to be properly investigated that this isn’t an attempt for the industry to ship in cheap labour when there is evidence of enough people here to fill the jobs.

    Also when we encourage overseas students to come here (over 90,000) do we make sure that the accommodation already exists or do they compete with New Zealanders in a tight market?


  4. TraceyS says:

    I guess it just shows that govt ministers are human like the rest of us. It was quite measured in the circumstances.

    One person I really admire lately for the way he communicates on social media is Waitaki Mayor, Gary Kircher. Open, transparent…firm when he encounters ignorance, and doesn’t shy away from the tough questions. Just a touch of defensiveness in the tone but without overdoing it. Quite different to what we see in Dunedin. I wish we had a mayor like that…


  5. Dave Kennedy says:

    We clearly need to know more about the sort of skills that we are bringing in to the country and the training we are providing our unemployed young people.


  6. Mr E says:

    ClearlyTM you greens have no information to back up any opposition.

    In your link Turei said:
    “We have issues in housing and we have issues in employment, but immigration is good for the New Zealand economy, it’s great to have an increasingly diverse population, so it’s a complicated issue [and] we don’t want to make any rushed statements or decisions.”

    ClearlyTM- not so clearly


  7. Paul Scott says:

    Woodhouse is an utter moron. He will be replaced as Minister Immigration after the next election. If by redneck<i/ he means simple and stupid, he is indeed. However unlike a redneck he is pompous to go with his weakness as Immigration Minister. He is a prime target for removal from his post.


  8. Paul Scott says:

    Just to do numbers here. We had net immigration of 80,000 inwards last year. Nanny says this is no pressure on housing. That is about 50,000 arriving in Auckland where a total of 10,000 houses were built.
    To take it even further Tony Alexander BNZ, stated that we need a massive immigration of Builders to build the house for the massive inflow of Immigrants .
    Watch next year’s election and see why the votes flock to NZF while Nanny sleeps.


  9. Dave Kennedy says:

    Mr E, this Government does not always base its decisions on evidence and research. It is difficult with limited resources to do the research that the Government should be doing. It had no data to support its refusal to limit foreign ownership of NZ property, it refuses to quantify child poverty and we have no clear idea whether current immigration is meeting real employment shortages. Most of the work visas are for low skilled jobs and there is the possibility that many employers are just seeking employees willing to work at minimum wages. As you would be aware, slavery is a growing problem here:
    “Slavery was most common in New Zealand’s fishing, dairy, agriculture, construction and hospitality industries.” The very employment areas that dominate immigration statistics.

    It would be foolish to make comments about our current levels of immigration without the qualitative information needed to back it up. Metiria is right to be cautious.


  10. it’s even more foolish to complain about foreign ownership


  11. Mr E says:

    The list of your inaccuracies is long Dave,
    “It had no data to support its refusal to limit foreign ownership of NZ property”

    ” it refuses to quantify child poverty”

    “we have no clear idea whether current immigration is meeting real employment shortages”

    How would you propose that the Government quantifies work availability? There is plenty of data on immigration meeting the needs of employers?


  12. Dave Kennedy says:

    Mr E, your statistics are nothing to do with what I described. The first has nothing to do with the number of properties bought by nonresidents and the Government admits that it doesn’t have that data. The vulnerable children data was from 2010 and the Children’s Commissioner had to do his own research when the Government refused to do this work. There is no ongoing tracking of child poverty so that progress can be tracked. There is no qualitative assessment on immigration meeting genuine employment needs and the latest North and South magazine exposes the exploitation of cheap immigrant labour over residents.

    I was going to say nice try, but your examples are not even close to what i was describing.


  13. Mr E says:

    “your statistics are nothing to do with what I described”

    You described property. I provided a statistic that showed foreign ownership of enterprise. Enterprise is property Dave.

    If you want residential property data and foreign ownership there is also data on that.

    You see Dave there was legislation passed on this issue.

    The Govt acted decisively – as you seem to be calling for. Your view on this seems out of date.

    Regarding child poverty.
    “the Children’s Commissioner had to do his own research when the Government refused to do this work”

    Ummm- the Childrens Commissioner is a Government department Dave.

    I recommend people read this report. Have you read it Dave?

    Again your calls are out of date.

    Regarding immigration – you didn’t answer my question. How would the Greens quantify work availability?


  14. Dave Kennedy says:

    Yes, Mr E after much pressure the Government is trying to collect data on overseas buyers, so we now have 6 months worth of data and the quality is being questioned by experts. Waiting over 7 years before collecting this information is hardly decisive:

    Since the 2014 data you linked to, 45,000 more children are now living in poverty according to the last Children’s Commissioner.

    I think there needs to be regionalised oversight of employment. The current data is short on detail and we probably need to ensure there is more regional focussed support for young unemployed (15%), if we don’t get them into good work habits at an early age they drift into dysfunctional behaviours. Too many of the jobs taken up by migrant workers are low skilled ones that our young unemployed could do with support and mentoring.

    Our immigration statistics show a huge intake in relation to our population (much greater than the UK). Up to 100,000 approved places between July 2014 and June 2016. This puts pressure on infrastructure (the population of Invercargill every year) and while it creates more economic activity it does little to increase overall prosperity according to many commentators.

    Click to access inz-1003-self-assess-guide-for-residence-in-nz.pdf


  15. Mr E says:


    “Waiting over 7 years before collecting this information is hardly decisive:”

    Transparent nonsense. Foreign investment has only been raised recently as an issue. The Government has put multiple laws in place in a sensible measured approach.

    Compared to you – late to the party – making out of date claims.

    “Since the 2014 data you linked to, 45,000 more children are now living in poverty according to the last Children’s Commissioner.”

    Utter nonsense. The article figure you linked to and the figure in the report I linked to were the same. 305K. Interestingly in 2001 the figure was 310,000.

    This poverty measure is ridiculous though. We both know that, I am sure.

    “if we don’t get them into good work habits at an early age they drift into dysfunctional behaviours.”

    We agree.

    I blame our educational system and socialist nonsense. Kids are not interested in jobs now days. The news paper run is near on illegal for kids, and unaffordable for employers.

    Lefties have made it unrealistic for employers and communities to take on kids.

    Kids can’t lift a finger without fear of socialist regulations or scaremongering.

    When I was 10, I had 5 jobs. All but one of them conducting community services. One of them was a real money spinner. And would be illegal today because of lefties.

    The things that drove me towards work – are all now illegal.

    We need our education system that support kids taking responsibility at an early age.

    Instead we have a system where everyone succeeds, and life is dangerous. Kids get driven towards the tele or computer.


  16. Mr E says:

    ” it does little to increase overall prosperity according to many commentators.”

    Commentators like Winston Peters, Pauline Hansen and Donald Trump? And seemingly now you too.


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