Is The Mikado racist?

NZ Opera is currently staging a production of the Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera The Mikado (which I’ve reviewed here). It was written in the 1800s as a satire on British high society, but set in Japan so that the satire could be more biting (they were limits to what you could say directly about…

Polling: housing vs poverty vs inequality

Previous polling data about what’s on the public’s mind has often run together poverty and inequality, and sometimes even conflated them with housing. So what happens when you split the three issues out, as polling firm UMR has helpfully done for the last six months and summarised below? Well, when you ask people what they…

TOP’s Democracy Reset: good principles, rushed execution

Gareth’s Morgan’s The Opportunities Party (TOP) yesterday announced its ‘Democracy Reset‘, tapping into the growing public sense that democracy isn’t working the way it should. And it’s right to identify concentrated power within Cabinet, falling voter turnout and vested interests as key threats to the system. But while it has some good ideas, it doesn’t…