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Prometheus98876

New Zealand - What Is Notable About It?

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I live in an often forgotten part of the world that sees little light (excepting for sunlight that is). That place is New Zealand. You know, where they made Lord of the Rings...

:thumbsup:

Anyway, I was wondering what you people think about when someone mentions NZ. Do you think it is a poky little hole, a land fill of Hobbits and Orcs?

I would like any thoughts you might have on NZ. I know little about what rational outsiders think of my country so I would like to know what you think, whatever it is.

Myself I think NZ has strengths, but alot of weaknesses...

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Things I've heard:

"Rugged"

"Outdoorsy"

"Proud"

Don't ask me to get more specific.

Many Kiwis are what you would call rugged. Almost every single one of us love the outdoors, and as you know we have alot of beautiful outdoors to admire.

As for proud? Our men are proud and the women pretend they aren't but they actually are...

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Anyway, I was wondering what you people think about when someone mentions NZ.  Do you think it is a poky little hole, a land fill of Hobbits and Orcs? 

I think of it as a little Australia loaded with sheep and lots of green rolling hills. There is a bit of a feud between your lot and the Australians, though I assume it's basically friendly. I've had my share of lamb roasts from NZ.

Didn't they win America's cup in sailing? Or was that the Aussies?

The government is a bit too socialistic, and there have been recent battles for more freedoms there, though I don't know if they've been successful.

Not only hobbits, but also I think of Lucy Lawless aka Zena the Warrior Princess, and the Hercules television series.

I also happen to have known a scientist from there, specifically a toxicologist. She worked in Great Britian and the U.S. as well. She made the comment that when she came to the U.S. is seemed "mind blowingly big", because in NZ you can drive anywhere pretty quickly, whereas in the U.S. you can drive for days to get from destination to destination.

Ernest Rutherford, the great physicist, is from there.

Don't swim in the ocean, or you may become shark food. Land for humans. Water for sharks.

Well, that's what comes to mind right away.

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  Not only hobbits, but also I think of Lucy Lawless aka Zena the Warrior Princess,  and the Hercules television series.

Okay, that should be "Xena" not "Zena". I knew that. For some reason I spelled it wrong anyway. :thumbsup:

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Prometheus! NZ rules, and you don't need the approval of us foreigners. :thumbsup:

As for NZ being "socialist," it really drives me nuts when labels like these are applied without proof or examples. Is this because they have nationalized health care (yet with a practically equivalent tax rate to the US)?? Did you know NZ has a lower corporate tax rate than the US plus 100% tax deduction for research and development? It's one of the best places in the world to start a small business. That ought to be something for many people on this forum to smile about.

I spent some time doing research for my PhD down there, first in Lewis Pass, then four months in Auckland. What a great country. I would love to get a job there. Can't wait to come back sometime, hopefully for an extended period. Here's what I like:

Kiwis are no-nonsense and friendly. They'll help you when you're in a bind, but they don't put up with crap from stupid people!!

The cost of living is reasonable, and it's clean and safe.

Hard work and resourcefulness are appreciated and rewarded, more than any country I've ever lived in, including my home country the United States.

The importance of exercise and enjoyment of the natural environment are part of your national identity. I guess this happens when you live on an island, have nowhere else to expand, and realize you'd better preserve what you've got for tourism and quality of life when 70% of your land is devoted to agriculture.

Edited by Liriodendron Tulipifera

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As for NZ being "socialist," it really drives me nuts when labels like these are applied without proof or examples.

Hey, the question was what our basic view of NZ is. Overall my view is quite postive. I just gave that one negative impression, which I would assume Prometheus agrees with.

Note, I said "a bit too socialist". It's not out right socialist, for then it would be a veritable communist state. You can, btw, also say that the U.S. is a bit too socialist.

Where have I heard this from? I can't give you any direct references, but I have heard interviews with Lindsay Perigo. Perigo is a big Ayn Rand fan living in NZ, who has been very critical of the government there. His web site is here

Note, I don't endorse Perigo's views per say, since he is antagnoistic to ARI, but his comments on NZ's government I assume are accurate. It was several years ago I read/heard him on this, so I can't tell you if you'll find anything on his website now.

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It was NZ that won the Americas Cup. As far as I recall, the Aussies are not all that great at sailing. Its hard to sail in a huge desert :D

We do have great scientists here. As you point out, Rutherford came from here originally, and not Britain as many claim. We have great mathematicians as well. In fact, our universitys are apparently among the worlds best. Auckland University was apparently ranked 8th in the world at one stage a few years back.

As for sharks, well just like in the rest of the world, shark attacks are extremely unlikely and in fact Kiwis are very aquatic.

As for socialism...yes very much so. Which I very much dislike of course. See an upcoming post for more on such.

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I am not looking for your approval. I do not much like NZ myself, and I wanted to see if you any of you might know enough to share some of those reasons. So you might say I am seeking disapproval among other things.... :D

Here alot of Kiwis consider it the right for those with money to support those whom will not bother to go out and earn it. There are alot of Kiwis whom consider income benefits from the government a "god-given" right. They of course dont ask "At whoms expense?"

Your other comments are mostly fair though. We generally are hard-working when we do work. The cost of living is reasonable, certaintly compared to what I hear it is like in the States. And we are innovative and hence we respect and reward resourcefullness and creativity.

Here are some problems with NZ, things about my people that I strongly dislike (you people seem to be aware of some of our strengths, so here are some flaws):

We are very anti-nuclear as a whole. That is ALL nuclear technology. Including nuclear power stations. EVEN though we are facing emiment power problems here and major black-outs in major cities within five years time. We have no plans to build nuclear power facilities even though we do not want to use polluting means of power production, and the Green party, a powerful but immoral political party does not wish us to build hydro-dams in our rivers (!!!).

We are very much against "rampant capitalism", or o we like to claim. Alot of us claim to hate those whom go and "blow" money on themselves instead of giving it to others. Yet if we do get alot of money, we go and do just this....

We beleive that we should be religously tolerant and respect all religions. Even though they can only do us harm. We have to respect Islam even though it denies its members basic rights and is particulary brutal. I am expected not to disrespect a religion such as Christanity which preaches that not to beleive in God will bring eternal suffering... well stuff that.

The country folk claim to hate the "city-folk" and claim that they dont need the big cities at all. Even though cities are the ones that buy their wool, mutton and other products. It is the cities where most Kiwis are employed, it is the cities that train the scientists, teachers, and proffessionals that the wealth and lifestyles of Kiwis rely upon. That is the stereotypical attitude of farmers anyway, in reality it is not quite as bad as the stereotype suggests.

Yes, I know this should have been in the last post...sorry about that folks (especially those moderators).

Edited by Prometheus98876

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I've often heard it mentioned in discussions about what country is the world is most libertarian, so I assume it has fairly low rates of taxation and decent personal freedom, but I know little else about it.

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We are very anti-nuclear as a whole.  That is ALL nuclear technology.  Including nuclear power stations.  EVEN though we are facing emiment power problems here and major black-outs in major cities within five years time.  We have no plans to build nuclear power facilities even though we do not want to use polluting means of power production, and the Green party, a powerful but immoral political party does not wish us to build hydro-dams in our rivers (!!!). 

[...]

We beleive that we should be religously tolerant and respect all religions.  Even though they can only do us harm.  We have to respect Islam even though it denies its members basic rights and is particulary brutal.  I am expected not to disrespect a religion such as Christanity which preaches that not to beleive in God will bring eternal suffering... well stuff that.

Yes, I'm aware of that as well. You're naming two forms of postmodernism: environmentalism and multiculturalism. Both are very dangerous and are worse, frankly, than even socialism.

These ideologies now permeate the West and are weakening our resolve against Islamo-fascists. America has them, but they seem to be stronger in Europe, Australia and NZ.

Keep in mind that postmodernism openly rejects *reason*. So, attempting to reason with these people, to the extent they're influenced by the ideology, is difficult.

My point about the sharks was a bit of a joke. :D I realize shark attacks are rare. Although, did you read about the attack by two great whites several months ago in Australia? The brother of the killed surfer didn't want the sharks to be hunted down and killed! Amazing! That's your environmental wackoism in action.

Btw, looked into it, and the Aussies did win the cup in 1983, with Australia II. Apparently they broke a 132 year winning streak for America. Click here

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Indeed, I am aware that such ideologies are common beyond NZ. But as you say, they are more common in say NZ then in America.

I have long ago learned that it is mostly pointless trying to reason with the majority of my "fellow" citizens. It is like talking to one of the 42 million (something like 42 million anyway, compared to 4 million people) sheep we have here..

The Aussies did win the Cup? I am not that interested in sailing, so I was not aware of that. Maybe they are alot better than I was estimating... I will have to look into that. I know they are one of the worlds best cricket teams. They totally demolish the NZ cricket team.

The Green Party here is worse than I briefly indicated before. They think free tertiary education is a moral neccessity. In fact I suspect that one of their leaders was responsible for a terroist action (relatively minor) that happened on the same day they announced their policy on free tertiary education.

We had free education here years ago, and as you woudl expect it was of a much lower standard than it is now.

Edited by Prometheus98876

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I would like any thoughts you might have on NZ.  I know little about what rational outsiders think of my country so I would like to know what you think, whatever it is. 

Myself I think NZ has strengths, but alot of weaknesses...

Strengths:

The All Blacks

The Haka

The All Blacks

One of the youngest and healthiest populations in the West

The All Blacks

The beautiful land

The All Blacks

A national obsession/love of sailing (something I'm starting to get into)

The All Blacks

Weakness:

Rampant postmodernists including the Greens, anti-nukes, socialists, etc.

The occasional loss to a 'bock

Still, I think the country is "young" enough that it can work the loons out of the wool and have a really great country. Not that it isn't great anyway. I think that given the realtive strengt of the Liberterianz party the idea of a free market system does have a place there. If I couldn't live here in the US, NZ would be a place I'd seriously consider.

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Strengths:

The All Blacks

The Haka

LOL. Right on. Another thing? The coffees, because NZ's milk has such high fat content, and the cows there eat what they are supposed to eat (grass) instead of corn, grain, or animal byproducts (yuk!).

Prometheus, as for looking for approval, all I meant was that on my initial visit there, people were constantly asking me how NZ compared to the US, whether I liked it there, etc. They were obsessed with what others thought. While I understand that tourism is an extremely important part of the economy there, it rather drove me nuts that they appeared to need others' approval so much. So, while your posting was just a desire for an honest opinion, I thought I saw a hint of insecurity there.

I know all about your problems with the Maori and their belief that the government should support them while others work. However, the rest of the citizenry I met there while I was there were sufficiently disgusted with govt. policy on the issue for me to think Kiwis had their heads screwed on straight. So, I'm not sure why things aren't changing. However, the US has enough of its own problems with social rif-raff.... so personally, I don't think us Americans have too much to be smug about.

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You are right that alot of Kiwis seek approval from tourists etc. I do not know exactly why we are quite so insecure. :huh:

While alot of us Kiwis are disgusted about current Maori policy issues (I think alot of them are sick of hearing about them), they still agree with alot of more disturbing issues.

As to how weak the Liberterianz party here is... if you can find 1 in a few thousand Kiwis whom have heard of it I am sure you would be 'lucky'.

As much as I might have complained about NZ in the last few posts I am sure alot of those problems would bother me in the hypothetical nation I would otherwise live in. People are people with the flaws of people wherever you go...

We are still young, and alot of our problems are not as deep-rooted as they might be in other countries. So it is possible that we might come to be a better nation sooner than would otherwise be the case. There are many Kiwis with respectable ideas and whom wish things to change. If they spoke up and attempted to make a change, changes might occur. Personally I am doing just that, starting small while time is scarce, by trying to change the attitude of a small sample of the student population, which after all is a section of NZs future.

It amuses me that while Kiwis think everyone around the world thinks "All Blacks" when they think of Kiwis, in this survey, only one of you have mentioned them. I always thought that perception to be most likely incorrect.

Edited by Prometheus98876

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It amuses me that while Kiwis think everyone around the world thinks "All Blacks" when they think of Kiwis, in this survey, only one of you have mentioned them.  I always thought that perception to be most likely incorrect.

You would be right usually. Most American think gorgeous scenery, sheep, really attractive people, and the 1 rugby match they've seen along with the haka.

Then you have your sports nuts who are fans of or at least watch rugby and are therefore fans of or at least know the haka because by golly once you see it it's pretty darned impressive.

I got to see a Samoan team perform a form of a haka live and was blown away. And to stereotype, there are not a whole lot of sports nuts here on OO.net much less ruggers, of which I am one.

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Oh, so rugby is abit bigger than I thought over there... interesting. Even if 'abit bigger' is still not very big in this case...

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Oh, so rugby is abit bigger than I thought over there... interesting.  Even if 'abit bigger' is still not very big in this case...

It's not. It's still a tiny sport played by a few nutty people. You have to have a satellite to watch it here and there are only a tiny handful of colleges and no professional teams as such. Mostly weekend warriors that do it for the fun of it.

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Ahh so I was pretty much bang on then.... I was guessing it was pretty much uncared for. You Americians are football mad, but dont care much for rugby (which many Kiwis call football... but thats a different matter).

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However, the US has enough of its own problems with social rif-raff....  so personally, I don't think us Americans have too much to be smug about.

You're selling America short here.

America has quite a bit to be "smug about". America has at foundation a real advantage over any other country, including even other British influenced countries: Canada, Australia, etc. Namely, the Declaration of Independence.

All of the poisonous ideas that are in NZ, Europe, etc. are here too, but there is far more resistance to those ideas here than there are in those places, from what I gather. There is strong resistance to environmentalism, for example. There is much more support of the pursuit of personal happiness in America. Americans are more apt to like achievers and achievement. Rising high is often seen as a good thing on the whole. Even Canadians are more apt to be given to altruism than are Americans.

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You're selling America short here.

...Even Canadians are more apt to be given to altruism than are Americans.

Bah. I'm not selling America short. Go back to my post and don't quote stuff out of context. I was talking about entitlements to minorities specifically, and believe me, I think the United States has a lot more problems in this arena than NZ does. was not talking about the foundation of government or environmentalism.

As for Canada, I know all about how altruistic it is. I've lived there for the past 8 months, and it's so awful I'm moving in two weeks. Homeless people on every corner. And we get taxed 15% on every purchase to give money to the homeless on every corner.

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Bah.  I'm not selling America short.  Go back to my post and don't quote stuff out of context.  I was talking about entitlements to minorities specifically, and believe me, I think the United States has a lot more problems in this arena than NZ does. was not talking about the foundation of government or environmentalism.

You could be right there. Btw, you appear to be well traveled!

I got to see a Samoan team perform a form of a haka live and was blown away. And to stereotype, there are not a whole lot of sports nuts here on OO.net much less ruggers, of which I am one.

I used to be a big sports fan. Football, ice hockey, baseball, etc. ... loved them all, and used to play them all. I still like them, but I guess now I find that other things are of more interest to me.

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I live in an often forgotten part of the world that sees little light (excepting for sunlight that is).  That place is New Zealand.  You know, where they made Lord of the Rings...

:dough:

Anyway, I was wondering what you people think about when someone mentions NZ.  Do you think it is a poky little hole, a land fill of Hobbits and Orcs? 

I would like any thoughts you might have on NZ.  I know little about what rational outsiders think of my country so I would like to know what you think, whatever it is. 

Myself I think NZ has strengths, but alot of weaknesses...

I always think of: Xena

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When I think of NZ, I tend to think: Free trade, All Blacks, Maoris, towns modelled after British ones (same thing where I live), and great big green hills and mountains that are mostly grassed.

When I saw some of the mountains I thought, if I ever do get married, I'd want to be helicoptered out to the top of one with the bride and perform the ceremony there.

By the way ScottKursk, I play either number 6, 7, or 8 on the rugby field usually.

Edit, Just to mention rugby is very big in my area, possibly because of the British influence here. My high school had a rugby team but no football team, for example.

Edited by ex_banana-eater

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QUOTE(Liriodendron Tulipifera @ Jul 26 2005, 08:27 PM)

However, the US has enough of its own problems with social rif-raff.... so personally, I don't think us Americans have too much to be smug about.

You're selling America short here.

America has quite a bit to be "smug about". America has at foundation a real advantage over any other country, including even other British influenced countries: Canada, Australia, etc. Namely, the Declaration of Independence.

All of the poisonous ideas that are in NZ, Europe, etc. are here too, but there is far more resistance to those ideas here than there are in those places, from what I gather. There is strong resistance to environmentalism, for example. There is much more support of the pursuit of personal happiness in America. Americans are more apt to like achievers and achievement. Rising high is often seen as a good thing on the whole. Even Canadians are more apt to be given to altruism than are Americans.

That is part of the reason that if I do move to another country it will be the US in all probability. Environmentalism is totally out of control here. And when I express my desire it be achieve highly in the fields I am currently studying, people here just say something like "Arent you cocky now". Even though I am clearly of above average ability and motivation.

As for free trade, there are various free trade policies in the pipeline, however I am not sure that any of them will actually ever be passed.

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