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View Diary: An invitation to Kiwi Kossacks (23 comments)

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  •  Just got back from a four week trip to (3+ / 0-)

    the south island. We would love to be Kiwi Kossacks. We got into a lot of conversations while there, and eventually a Kiwi would raise the questions about the US. We explained that yes, people here really do raise their children to not believe in evolution, and the Kiwi said "that is so bad for the children." Yup, I agree. We had to explain that yes, it is as insane in the Senate and House as they hear. And far worse if you read the full stories. Kiwis would ask "How do you deal with it?" And all I can say is humor. And Kos, but I didn't get into that.

    Being in a land of sanity was awfully nice, and then watching your government humanely, humanly, vote in gay marriage? Wow. A place where government is working, maybe not perfectly, I am sure that the 1080 stuff is seriously awful, and people in christchurch so need more help. But overall, we are envious. We are envious of the living wages people make. We marveled at the birds. We gobbled up the insane and cool geologic and evolutionary history. We finally saw a penguin! Actually several. We are trying to figure out how to come back. Perhaps tons of bake sales?

    "You can't write good satirical fiction in America because reality will quickly outdo anything you might invent." - Philip Roth

    by jancw on Mon Apr 22, 2013 at 05:34:44 AM PDT

    •  I'm glad you saw some penguins which are big down (0+ / 0-)

      here in Dunedin.
      I've often heard the comment that American visitors are surprised how much kiwis know about US politics. This isn't so surprising as being a small country we are rather highly sensitised to global political issues and the Iraq invasion REALLY caused major heartburn over here. Largest protest marches since Vietnam (there is a pattern I'm seeing here in the data).
      What IS worth noting, however, is that I've met and had fabulous political conversations with dozens and dozens of American visitors and expat residents and I've only ever met ONE who was a Republican (he sorta didn't count as he was a visiting Prof from a Business School... actually, why a Prof from a Business School would think the Repubs are worth supporting is another curious question...).
      Travel, it seems, refines our political sensitivities, and travel to NZ even more so.

      "Both sides are just the same". Voter shorthand for "I haven't been paying attention".

      •  So true (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        smelly pirate

        Whenever we have traveled in oz or NZ, people always want to know why the US is so insane. We were in Oz during the Health Care debate, and every hike we went on, we would meet folks who wanted to know why on earth people would be against healthcare. Because truly, it is insane to not try and help your own population.

        In NZ, it was interesting to have to explain the dirty details of why the house keeps now trying to outlaw healthcare, and how the house is republican, but the senate is not, but the filibuster still makes it impossible to do things.

        I got a very strong sense that Kiwis were very very happy to live far away from us. But were concerned about how our policies very much affect the world.

        "You can't write good satirical fiction in America because reality will quickly outdo anything you might invent." - Philip Roth

        by jancw on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 07:22:22 AM PDT

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