Tauranga National MP, Bob “the Builder” Clarkson says what he thinks of the Exclusive Brethren.
“Mr Clarkson, who took the Tauranga seat from Winston Peters, said he didn’t ask people their religion and didn’t care what it was.
He did know that he had done business with sect members over the past 10 years, and didn’t have any problems.
“I’ve found them to be fair-minded, law-abiding and hard working,” he said.
“I’d trust a Brethren before I trusted a Labour Party member.”
New Zeal Well said, Bob.
9 thoughts on “Bob the Builder Bats for Brethren”
The voters of New Zealand shouldn’t have to put up with being told how to vote by people who refuse to vote themselves. if you don’t like the government, then vote it out. They refuse to do that so lose the right to tell us how to vote.
I agree that the law should apply equally to all.
I would turn it around and abolish council plans for everybody.
That said, I hope in a way that Labour does remove the EBs union exemptions.
Then people like me would have another powerful ally in getting those corrupt laws abolished.
Again, whatever merits your argument has, Bob did not mention any of this. He said that Muslim women should not wear the burka in New Zealand, full stop. I assume as a libertarian you disagree with this?
If one faults the Muslim women who wanted to change the law to suit their practices then one must also fault the Brethren, who try to make law conform to their beliefs in numerous ways, some of them ridiculous. For instance, they refuse to use the same sewage and drainage systems as us, and thus apply for legal exemptions from council plans on religious grounds. And they plead to be exempted from industrial relations law. If Muslim citizens of New Zealand must follow the law and not seek any special favours on account of their religion, should not the same be expected of the Brethren?
There was a case some time ago anon, where two Muslim women refused to testify in court unless they wore the burqua. That was a clear attempt to make NZ law conform to a custom of some (I emphasise some) Muslims.
The EBs are NZ citizens-they are here and normally keep to themselves. No problem.
The same unfortunately cannot be said of some (again I emphasise some) Muslims.
There is a very old principle. Good immigrants behave like guests. They conform to the hosts rules.
But if Bob thinks they should be free to do so, does he also think Muslim women should be free to wear the burka, as long as they don’t try to force it on anyone else? The answer clearly is no. They have to ‘fit into the mainstream’. When expressing this point Bob did not attempt to argue that Muslim women wearing the burka were a terrorist threat, wanted to ram their dress code down anyone else’s throat, etc He maintained that even if they were doing no one else any harm it was wrong for them simply to wear the burka, because that was outside the mainstream. So why the double standard over the Brethren, who sure as hell are also outside the mainstream? The answer is pretty obvious – the Brethren are National Party allies. So much for the man’s principled stand…
No anon, I think its simply that the brethren are basically decent people who like to keep to themselves.
Most Muslims are like that too.
However certain Isalamists want to force us to adopt their views.
The Brethren just want to be left to live their lives as they see fit.
Long may they be free to do so
Red herring. Bob criticised fundamentalist Muslims because they didn’t come into what he called the mainstream of Kiwi life. They hid themselves away from the community, didn’t mix with others outside their religion. They ran their own schools which were full of religious mumbo jumbo. They treated their women like second class citizens. All these points can be made and indeed are being made about the Brethren – yet, far from condemning this bunch of wackos, Bob steps up to the plate and defends them. Why? Wouldn’t have anything to do with the fact that the Brethren support National and Muslims by and large back Labour would it? Nah…
Maybe because, for all their faults, Brethren don’t murder schoolchildren, hi-jack airliners, commit suicide bombings, declare war on the West, issue fatwas against people who diss their religion, cut hostages heads off and post the gruesome scenes on the internet, shoot at soldiers from behind stone throwing school boys etc etc. Apart from that they’re pretty much the same really.
Perhaps not so fair-minded if you’re gay and apply for a job at a company they run. Or work for them and want to speak a non-English language during your lunch break. Or have the misfortune of being a female born into one of their families and miss out on an education in anything but home ed and sewing as a result. How come Bob the builder is so down on fundy Islam and yet OK with its Christian equivalent?