OPINION

I have intel from the frontline. Kids don't want Māori as a compulsory subject. Well, at least the kids I talked to yesterday.

Compulsion in life is not often a successful application.

It breeds resentment, lethargy, dislike, and disdain. If you want something to prosper you encourage, sell and invigorate.

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Now as to the Greens push, here's the good news. New Zealand First are in the way.

It's why it never saw the light of day in the coalition deal in the first place. Hence they're back for another crack.

The irony of this is, once again, it places New Zealand First at the centre of the political spectrum. They were against the oil decision in Taranaki, they want to get rid of Māori seats, and they scuttled Andrew Little's three strikes reform.

They look, compared with the other lot, relatively normal. And that, in the long, run can do them no harm.

Equally Winston Peters, fresh off his six-week "I'm the boss" stint, looks like a seasoned pair of hands compared with Jacinda Ardern, who is quite clearly feeling the pressure now and, if not wilting, at least looking flushed.

It also plays very poorly for the Greens because, yet again, it's the wacky end of the social engineering spectrum that gets them all the bad headlines, not the ones they're after. You know, the ones to do with the environment. Hence the reason they're called the "Greens."

Now back to my intel. Kids want subjects that take them places. Kids want to line up subjects with careers and their futures. And the ones I talked to yesterday all said, and they're right, Māori as a language takes them nowhere.

And that's before you get to the practicalities. These days no subject at the top end of high school is compulsory.

Then you're introducing something into a system that is already apparently strained, stressed, and under-funded with over-worked operators with yet another thing to do.

And who are you doing it with, the vast array of unemployed Māori language specialists?

So it's not just a lack of desire but a lack of resource as well.

And in compulsion what do you end up with? Vast classrooms of people who don't want to be there.

It has been the same forever. The more you make kids do stuff they don't want, or like, the harder it is to make them do it.

If you want to learn Māori, learn it. But it makes as much sense to make it compulsory as it does to make signing compulsory. After all, signing is an official language. And no one is arguing that. So why Māori? Virtue signalling and ideology from social engineers that have little connection to the real world.