Affordable Housing, Democratic Erosion, and the inevitability of Capitalism
Permanent link to Research Commons versionhttps://hdl.handle.net/10289/15812
Recent New Zealand governments have sought to increase the provision of affordable housing by introducing legislative initiatives designed to encourage ownership among first-home buyers. State-directed efforts around affordable housing focused on increasing the supply of land for housing and encouraging builders to include affordable housing in their developments. Evidence from New Zealand Parliamentary Debates (Hansard) shows the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013 introduced by a National-led Government and the Housing Legislation Amendment Act 2016 introduced by a Labour-led Government reinforced the inevitably of the mechanisms of neoliberal capitalism. Members of Parliament tacitly accepted the worth of market mechanisms and the centrality of capitalism to the provision of affordable housing. This paper identifies ways in which recent state intervention in the affordable housing market was expressive of neoliberal capture of the political process. The hegemony of neoliberal capitalism, and associated democratic narrowing, are manifestations of post-politics. When viewed through a post-political lens, Parliamentary debates associated with recent housing legislation expose the potential for the erosion of democracy.
The Sociological Association of Aotearoa New Zealand (SAAN)
© 2022 The Author.