Lol firstly that was a very quick response. I think it does change things a lot. Lol by that I mean the ethnicity proportions in New Zealand, not the speed of your reply. It tends to push things more around the Maori issue. There are arguments about how many immigrants we should be allowing in. But more attention is placed by far on the Maori. Whether or not there should be an active effort to preserve their culture and language, whether we should keep our Maori seats in parliament and finally whether they should still be getting hand outs from the government as compensation for the crimes the Crown committed against them (and if so how much). You have the advantage of not being a country which was colonized by Europe (partly because you ARE part of Europe). It makes some issues complex to say the least.
You have essentially hit the nail on the head, with memories of Rogernomics fresh in the minds of those who lived through it, they are very untrusting of policies like that. The other aspect where they would get stung is through MMP itself. It provides a system of much more accountability. New Zealand also has a fairly large level of transparency in our Government so it is a little harder to keep secrets. For instance I can walk into X department and request Y information. If my reason for this is valid and they decline my request I can go to a body separate to the government whose job it is to protect my rights to access information. This does not even take into account that (most) select committees are both open to public attendance and written submissions. It would be rather difficult to sneak a change like this under the radar. Rogernomics scared the nation a little too much to allow for that.
It is also the same from New Zealand's perspective. As I am hearing more of Obama's policies I am finding I dislike him more and more. I would also agree that he sits in the right side of the political compass (or whatever you want to call it xD). Lol all news media has a political bias. I do not generally trust the mass media at all.
I tried to have a look at your site you provided but seeing as I am currently on capped internet it was a little too heavy for me. Well it would be more accurate to say my patience is not high enough. Lol I will have a look at it when I am back on uncapped internet then give some feedback. My liking for political compass.org stems more from the fact it plots people on it much more similarly to my views. It does seem to also provide a nice way of teaching a beginner to understand what left and right mean in politics etc. I was able to use it to help my gf understand and she finds politics very difficult. (Although she passed her politics paper last semester, I am EXTREMELY proud of her)
How was the transition from public to free market for the health care system? Does it look like this are just initial problems which will go away or do you think they are a sign of things to come? I also find it quite amazing how many obscure parties you get from your elections. How is the funding system worked for political parties there?
Generally the two examples you mentioned fall into the same (or very similar) school of Nationalism. We do have some people like that in New Zealand. Although it is a little complex as New Zealand does not have a singular culture. At best you could cut it down to two (European aka western and Maori), although that would still be very questionable and open to debate. I myself being strongly in support of a multi cultural society strongly reject any attempts to block out cultures. Although at the same time I support measures to preserve Maori culture. In the 19th and 20th centuries like many indigenous people world wide it seemed like they were doomed to become extinct. Thankfully they also followed a trend where they showed just how resilient they can be. Lol no prizes for guessing I am loving my first anthropology paper this semester.
There is a chance that someone could make a change to it. I do not see this as being very likely for two reasons. Under MMP it is MUCH more difficult for something like that to happen. Secondly it would be political suicide.
I am slightly more interested in the US elections at the moment, although this is possibly because I have a fair idea of how I will be voting. Still need to decide on my party vote, but my candidate vote is going to the guy replacing Steve Maharey for Labour. Although I must admit he has some rather big shoes to full. Good ol Steve was somewhat of a behemoth in Palmerston North. He has never lost an election, an amazing feat when you consider he first ran when all of New Zealand hated Labour with a passion. (For this we thank Rogernomics, and Sir Roger Douglas for introducing it).
New Zealand is generally more critical of Sarah Palin. Although she is very much an extreme relative to the New Zealand political realm. Generally New Zealand media is all behind Obama. You would think he walked on water or something.
I am hoping for it to get quite interesting here too. Also quite happy to hear you took the test. How did you find it? Finally what is the current political scene like where you live? Any big issues?