Mike Hosking: Labour Party criticism shows PC culture trumps productivity

Author
Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Mon, 9 Dec 2019, 4:16PM
Some criticised Labour Party for electing Claire Szabo, left, as Presidnet instead of a Māori. (Photo / Getty)

Mike Hosking: Labour Party criticism shows PC culture trumps productivity

Author
Mike Hosking,
Publish Date
Mon, 9 Dec 2019, 4:16PM

Part of what productivity is is focusing on the stuff that’s effective and matters.

I say this because we have struggled with productivity in this country for as long as I can remember. We aren’t any more productive today than we have ever been, and that is not very productive.

Productivity is working smarter not harder, and it occurs to me one of the more unproductive things we have been trapped into is the world of the politically correct appointment in the work force.

Women in charge, women on boards, race issues, HR courses designed to tackle stereotypes and so called archaic thinking.

The Labour Party elected their new president the other week, Claire Szabo. She sounded a lot like Jacinda, I am assuming because she was Jacinda’s favourite and I have no doubt Jacinda had been in her ear.

But she seemed perfectly likeable, and given the party had voted for her I had assumed they were happy with their choice.

But sadly, no.

Somebody called Morgan Godfrey, who is a trade unionist, surely one of the great handbrakes to productivity ever, lamented that the party had missed the opportunity to elect the first Māori president in 50 years.

And so in one small example, we see all that is wrong with getting on with the job.

You could argue having a vote for a job isn’t the smartest thing you can do if you want the best person for the job, but then neither is arguing on gender or race and yet we seem increasingly obsessed with it. All the while forgetting that race and gender has nothing to do with expertise or experience or skill or productivity.

Why was electing a Māori president important other than to tick a perceived box? Where in Morgan’s mind did talent fit or wasn’t that important?

And that sadly is how these debates descend.

At the start of this particular obsession it was women: women needed to be hired and promoted and elected. Indeed the fact Claire Szabo is a woman seems to have passed everyone by. And not just that, but she replaced an old white guy from England, so glass half full, surely an advance.

But no, the woke have moved on from gender. It’s all about race: got to have a Māori. Of course, the jackpot would have been a female Māori who was actually able to advance the party beyond the catastrophic mess they’d found themselves in (hence the reason they  had the vote  in the first place)

In appointing people to tasks, the simplest of rules, sadly long since forgotten, should still apply: are they the best person for the job? If you’re not asking that question, and if that question isn’t at the top of the list every time you ask, you’ve been hi jacked into a world where productivity is going to suffer if not hurt you.