Hullo Waitangi Day. Then Goodbye New Zealand.

Two stories based on the same information but with different spin:

From the Sydney Morning Herald: The angle is that the equivalent population of a New Zealand city has relocated to Australia over the past year.

”There is some concern about the loss of 45,000 people [in a year],” said Statistics New Zealand spokesman Nicholas Thomson. ”With our population of about 4.4 million, that’s the equivalent to the population of a lot of our cities.

I’m horrified. A sizable town or city left New Zealand in the past year! Seriously? This sounds like an enormous problem. Surely this will appear on the front of our daily newspapers and our politicians be urged to act with urgency. But no. Population shrinkage is a myth on this side of the Tasman.

From the New Zealand Herald:

“The much vaunted brain drain to Australia is no worse than it has ever been, and is actually smaller as a proportion of New Zealand’s total population than it was 40 years ago, a major study by the Department of Labour has found.

I had already blogged how this was wishful thinking and that Statistics NZ will not have the full picture on NZ departures.

I’m now wondering if all our good thinkers have already left for ‘Australia Fair’, be they journalists or analysts. Come on guys, wake up.
Time has moved on and technology in particular has advanced tremendously; if people leave, they may not feel the same pull to return home as they did in the 1970’s. We can skype, call and fly home to visit cheaper than ever before. The problem of a disappearing population is very real.
The ditch has shrunk, but the economic benefits of training New Zealanders are going to Australia, as many more New Zealanders leave to call Australia home.
I don’t believe the Christchurch Earthquakes are solely to blame, though the constant aftershocks have taken a toll on some nerves. In times of crisis we tend to hunker down and are more called to our familiar home and hearth.
Of course the opposition will blame National for the mass exodus. TheĀ chickensĀ are coming home to roost under the watch of National however it is both sides of the house that are to blame.
I believe the wild ideological swings of the previous two decades are to blame.

Whatever the reasons people are emigrating, the trend must be reversed soon. A country with over 1/4 of it’s population residing overseas with more leaving is not a nation.
It is a few scattered islands in the stream.

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