Too many New Zealanders like telling others what to do

Andrew Dickens laments the loss of personal freedoms.

It seems to me that personal freedom is coming under more and more attacks in modern New Zealand.

And it’s coming from all sides. Not just from the social engineering left but also the conservatives. You know the ones. The people who are fond of shouting that the world is going to hell in a handcart because of political correctness.

Firstly we’ve got the announcement … that smoking in public places is about to be banned in Auckland. Beaches, al fresco dining areas and urban areas like the CBD or shopping precincts are about to be deemed smokefree because the Council wants Auckland smokefree by the end of 2018. Of course they can’t ban it because smoking is not illegal so they’re relying on social pressure.

Thirty per cent of New Zealanders smoke and that’s their personal freedom. They already know social pressure. Boy do they get it about their dirty habit. They’re also taxed at a phenomenal rate. Thirty bucks for 25 fags. And most already try to avoid irritating the non-smokers. But to have an entire city declared smokefree is an oppression of a significant minority who are breaking no law. But I guess the Council knows best.

These are the same councils that want to ban global warming and make their areas Nuclear Free.   There isn’t an awful lot of intellectual prowess on display.  Especially when their rate payers are still hitting pot holes and that car wreck is still sitting on the side of the road months later.

And then there’s my comments yesterday that the drinking age should stay at 18. That’s because the 18 and 19 year olds are not the only people causing mayhem under drink. I reckon it’s not who’s drinking, its how the people who drink are drinking. We saw proof of that yesterday when the acrobatic troupe that was subjected to sexual harassment by Lions fans said most of the offenders were drunks who could be the teen’s dads. Now how would a change in drinking age do anything to fix that. An adoption of personal responsibility will.

In saying that I was told by many that I was a thicko liberal. Righto. I thought you conservatives believed in personal freedom. You hate nanny state. You say that personal responsibility is what we need. You want common sense. So who are you to tell all adults whether they can drink, smoke or have a joint even if they can do that without impinging on other’s freedoms?

The whole world. Left right, conservative and liberal seem obsessed with telling other people how to live their lives. I tell you it’s political correctness gone mad

Andrew confuses Conservatism with Libertarianism.   Only Libertarians believe the individual is the best judge of what to do for the individual as long as it does not negatively impact on others.

Which brings us back to smoking.   Society is remarkably moving towards a libertarian view on that.  In the sense that you are allowed to smoke as long as it doesn’t negatively impact someone else.

But giving up… rights… you have always had is hard.

And the idea that you can be part of a society that doesn’t collectively enforce its will on others is fairly naive.  The best you can achieve is to find a place to live where most of the people there see the world through the same lens as you do.


– Andrew Dickens, NZ Herald

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