Phil the super-mayor, super-hero and trail-blazer

These are the words of Auckland super-mayor Phil Goff when interviewed by Duncan Garner on the AM show Tuesday morning on the issue of Auckland inequality:

“We are all part of the problem and we are all part of the solutions”.

I’m scratching my head to work out exactly how we can all be part of the problem and also part of the solution. My experience is that people who are part of the problem are seldom part of the solution.

We do know, from the interview, that Phil is all about finding solutions for Auckland’s inequality. He says inequality exists between South Auckland and the rest of Auckland. So if you’re struggling and living in Te Atatu South or Hillcrest, or in fact anywhere that is not South Auckland, you’ll need to find another super-hero because Phil the super-mayor is only investing in South Auckland. If you’re white and living in Auckland you are tough out of luck.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff Photo Credit Newshub

Phil said he grew up in South Auckland after the Second World War when: Quote

“Everybody was employed, and having a home that you could afford was part of your birth right. That’s what our fathers and grandfathers went away and fought in the war for.” End of quote.

Those war veterans will need counselling when they discover they were lied to when they charged off to fight. They thought they were fighting to stop Pacific countries from being over run by the Japanese and European countries from falling to the Germans. There was no mention of affordable housing and this new information could put them into terminal decline. I certainly hope super-mayor Phil is available to help pick up the pieces.  Quote.

“And we’ve lost some of that commitment to community.  For every kid that doesn’t do well in our society, that is a kid that will not only grow up maybe to create social problems but a kid that is not contributing.” End of quote.

Phil is a super-mayor on a mission to rescue people in South Auckland who have reached adulthood despite falling through the cracks. He says there are 27,000 of them lounging around under the South Auckland board walk between 16 and 24 years old who are not employed, not in education and not in training and they can expect super-mayor Phil to swoop out of the sky and rescue them.  He says he’s going to do it and has a rescue target of 26,000.  He’s going to be busy, but fear not, he’s already started.

Phil has implemented a training programme for 300 Maori and Pasifika and also introduced a ‘social procurement’ programme whereby businesses who are employed by the Auckland City Council are contractually obliged to employ a number of Maori and Pasifika unqualified and untrained youngsters and teach them on the job. Someone should let the education department know so they can cut back their budgets because super-mayor Phil is picking up the slack, and he wants to do more of it!

And let’s not forget the generosity of Auckland ratepayers without whom our super-mayor would be utterly powerless. A huge thank you, to all of you (that’s from me, not Phil, he is off prioritising).

“It’s all about priorities” is another wonderful quote from super-mayor Phil. He says he is a firm believer in the free market economy but unfortunately, it doesn’t address social needs. With the very generous backing of Auckland ratepayers, he is able and willing to push ahead as a modern superhero and social justice warrior.

Phil is very proud of his pay increase that provides a living wage for all Auckland City Council employees. He’s a trailblazer, and although he won’t name names, he says he knows of other big business who can and should do better in the wage department.

When asked about Auckland’s high cost of living he is coy about the introduction of an ‘Auckland wage’ saying ‘I don’t want to go there, I want to focus on the things that are really important’. Of course, he does, he really should focus on the things that are really important.

When asked if he would put a stop to Auckland’s 45,000 annual migrants that contribute to road congestion, squeeze the job market and drive up housing prices, his response was an emphatic ‘No!‘  He said some of them work and pay taxes’. Taxes are clearly very important to Phil, as of course, they are to us all. What about those immigrants not working, not paying taxes and who are biding their time in a state house receiving subsidized medical care as they twiddle their thumbs waiting for the pension that they have contributed nothing to?

Phil also noted from his recent stint in hospital that 60-70% of people who work in hospitals are immigrants. Does he think hospitals will have to close their doors if they don’t have a never-ending supply of immigrant labour? My head is spinning as I imagine a revolving hospital front door with immigrant employees leaving as fast as new ones arrive. Far be it for me to question a super-mayor, but why don’t we train up the 27,000 dole bludgers before bringing in more people?

Phil also said he is aiming for an ‘inclusive Auckland’.  Help me here readers, because an ‘inclusive Auckland’ is a term I am unfamiliar with. I can’t for the life of me, think of one overseas city that could possibly be called ‘inclusive’.

Is he going to do something about the Auckland retirees forced out of their lifelong homes because they can’t afford the rates bill? They’ve never taken government handouts, always paid their way and their taxes. They won’t be part of the ‘inclusive Auckland.’ They will be pinning their hopes on selling the family home to an overseas investor for a tidy capital gain retirement nest egg and moving out of Auckland.  Phil the trail-blazer, what a super-mayor, what a guy!


Do you want:

  • Ad-free access?
  • Access to our very popular daily crossword?
  • Access to daily sudoku?
  • Access to Incite Politics magazine articles?
  • Access to podcasts?
  • Access to political polls?

Our subscribers’ financial support is the reason why we have been able to offer our latest service; Audio blogs. 

Click Here  to support us and watch the number of services grow.

Suze aka Sue Sangster is an avid reader, writer and aspiring novelist with a green thumb.

Listen to this post:
62%