Why Australians think they're more progressive than NZ

  • 05/03/2018

Aussies have banded together on popular web forum Reddit to boast why they believe their country is more progressive than New Zealand.

The thread was in response to an opinion piece in The Guardian, titled: Australia has lost its compass for the world, while Jacinda Ardern shows the way.

The article by Australian writer Thom Woodroofe describes how New Zealand may be inching ahead of Australia in terms of foreign policy and our reputation on the international stage.

But many Australians are unconvinced.

"It's become sort of an obsession for me," user Isansco said, "why Australians think that New Zealand [has led] Australia on most things 'for decades', when in actual fact New Zealand is not doing well at all.

"Things such as a high minimum wage, a tax free threshold, higher welfare benefits, no exorbitant GP co-payment, a much higher refugee intake per capita, high student allowance and more student grants and loans and more unionism."

Fellow Australians echoed Isansco's remarks, elaborating on why their country is more progressive.

"A lot of this is due to NZ going neoliberal earlier, faster, and harder than Australia (and most other western countries)," wrote tmnvex.

One user reasoned that New Zealand had a better feel about it than Australia.

"I gotta say NZ feels and looks like it's going ok. It certainly seems a more compassionate and forward looking country than Australia."

But that sparked a fierce retaliation.

"They take a few hundred refugees per annum," user Sanguinius said.

"Hardly compassionate."

Pihkaltih agreed, saying it's "grim times" for those "struggling economically or with trauma or other mental health concerns" in New Zealand.

"NZ is waaaaay more right wing than Australia," the user stated.

"It's an extremely neoliberal country and in fact, the Liberals welfare reform policies are pretty much copy-pasted from NZ.

"One of the reasons my family actually bailed NZ. Electricity was privatised and then the rolling blackouts started."

But at least one user was on our side.

"The upside of Australia is that its great: great weather, nice places, ability to do stuff if you like doing stuff.

"Downside? Lot of Australians there."