Populism seems to be on the rise again in New Zealand politics. Today we had Helen Clark declaring a virtual war on tagging with draconian, yet ineffective policies to deal with spray-paint vandalism. The chances of this sort of policy, which includes banning the sale of spray-paint to youths under 18, actually working hover slightly above nil. But it’s a popular policy to push to the electorate: 1. Tagging is a bane of the (mostly white) middle class. It gets people riled in a way that banging on about “sustainability” never will. Tagging is emotional, as it gets to the...
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