Posts Tagged ‘ politics ’

Winston First

Listening to the kiddies at play in their sandpit Parliament yesterday I noticed that National spent most of their time going for Clark. Winston even made some comment after his ‘speech’ to the effect of “is that all” when there was only mild murmuring from the opposition benches.

I dawned on me ( a bit slow ) why Key and National were leaving Winston alone… they need his vote after the election if they are to form a Government.

I see a lot of ‘right’ and ‘left’ wing bloggers have been railing against Winston, but now I believe this is miss guided, actually they should be getting stuck into Labour and National, they are the ones who give NZ First and Winston life blood. So what if he gets five percent, if he wasn’t there with the profile and baubles of office, he would be polling down where ACT is (sorry guy’s but it’s true).

Winston is like a habitually spoilt child, stamping his feet and demanding the shiny toys, then strutting around the playground grandstanding and showing off, his parents (pick Labour or National, they’ve both been there) stand on the side lines like blushing parents willing to excuse their off springs every little fault.

And so was Clark today, who cares if he was legally right, he is morally wrong and an epic hypocrite, and she knows it but she’ll say whatever it takes to keep her government together. This unedifying spectacle will be repeated again and again probably with National next time.

There is a way out, but Clark didn’t have the balls, so it’s unlikely Key will either.

National needs to come out and state that it will not form a coalition with NZ First or any party involving Winston, his politics is not the sort of thing National thinks is good for NZ and if people want to vote for him that’s their right, but his options lie with Labour not with National and voters will need to consider that at the polling booth.

This would cut of the life support (it surely must be good for 2 – 3%) that these two parties have given Winston, and so voters that National is serious about making a break from the sleazy politics that become stock in trade of the Labour government.

The chances of National and Key doing this are low, and that’s why I think National represents ‘Labour Lite’, a kind of light purple in shade of Labour. Disappointing, but political reality as this is not the team that will make any changes and move NZ forward, they could, they have the talent, but I suspect that the prospect of being the Government will be too much for them and they will give in to Winston an the circus will repeat itself.

In six years time, maybe sooner we will be seeing the same spectacle, just with different prime ministers.

C’mon National show some spine!


Sideshow Pete

Sideshow Pete (apologies to Simpsons)

Joining dog owners and Vodafone on my list of groups I’m totally over, NZ First and Sideshow Pete(rs).

I think Winston represents in one neat package everything that is wrong with politics and it’s hardly surprising politicians are way down the list on people the public trust.

This morning on Morning Report he managed to skillfully not answer any of the questions put to him, answering every question (which just required a yes or a no) with another question. At the end of the interview we knew nothing more, apart from that he was going to sue everyone for “outrageous allegations”. You were left with the impression that either he did know something and wasn’t going to be tricked into admitting it, or if he didn’t then he is exceedingly naive – I know which option I would take.

It would be really good if the party retired him because he’s just a huge joke now. I don’t even thinks he takes himself seriously.

In what must have been a 5 minute interview Sideshow Pete managed to avoid saying anything about the donation from the prominent racing family, apart from the bleeding obvious fact that as Minister of Racing (what the hell do we have a Minister of racing for anyway) he knew “of them”. The fact that he didn’t admit anything either way really means you could draw the conclusion that he did know, because if he didn’t he would have just come out and said so. It’s all rather too neat that the donations were all allegedly under $10,000, and so because they were anonymous they didn’t have to be declared.

It seems that the man who spent many years chasing tax evaders has learnt a few tricks of his own. Sure nothing is strictly illegal, but it stinks all the same.

I honestly believe that unless the major parties start to take a stand and clean up politics in ten years we are going to see corruption. This chicanery and use of grey areas has led some people to think this is all OK. It’s not and it has to stop.

National needs to stand up now and show some spine. They need to state now that even if it means they won’t become government, they will not deal with NZ First if Winston Peters is leader.

Key tried to have a buck each way and claimed that it was the voters who decided who was in government. This is showing the same flexibility that Sideshow Pete shows, and I’m pretty confident that most voting citizens are sick and tired of this sort of shit. Show some leadership and balls John, don’t deal with Peter’s.

We need a government that shows some commitment to moving past the growing sleaze of the last few years and who will clean things up, not wallow further in the trough. National need to demonstrate that they will makes some tough calls and they can start by sending a message to voters, “A vote for NZ First will not get you a National Government”. I for one will be seriously considering my votes if it looks like Winston will be getting anywhere near the ‘baubles of office’ in the next National Government.

The good ideas start to flow

Australia’s biggest provider of work-for-the-dole programmes, Mission Australia, says it is keen to move into New Zealand if an incoming National Government puts such programmes up for tender here.

My, haven’t the National Party been busy! If they can sustain the flow of new(ish) ideas for dealing with old problems until the election then they might win on merit rather than by default.


This, kids, is a record player, it was what people used to play music on. A relic... like the Labour Party

This is such a tidy idea and one operated by city missions. The idea of giving missions a greater role in helping with disadvantaged people is not new, but one worth looking again and it’s refreshing to see that the Nat’s have actually been thinking about some solutions to our problems.

Even though the policies so far are been a fuzzy purple colour, that hasn’t stopped Labour bleating on like a broken record about National wanting to privatise everything. Heard Marion-oneway-Street accusing National of wanting to privatise ACC this morning, really all she had to say was that they were privatising it, privatising it, privatising it… oh, and did you know, they’re going to privatise it?

For gods sake Labour, smell the coffee guys, if all we’re going to hear about over the coming months is about how National are “going to privatise it” then your’e toast.

ACC Commonsense

Despite part of me saying that the whole ACC concept is socialist, it does in fact work quite well so I am not going to start advocating that we should do away with it.

The National Party has come up with a very moderate policy on tweaking ACC a bit.

I should emphasise moderate because I expect within the next 24 hours we are going to hear a lot of hysterical shrieking and screaming along the lines that a National Government is either going to completely privatise ACC or this is a back door way of privatising it – would that National really had the guts to privatise anything, but everyone can be rest assured we are not going to see that during their first term, if ever, as I suspect National if they win will just be Labour Lite without the PC.

Everyone needs to understand something about ACC, large employers already get to ‘opt out’ of ACC in a sense as they can develop their own in house ACC schemes to reduce accidents and get insurance based on the success of their programs – I know, I have been working for one such large employer (1000 staff plus).

All that National are proposing is to allow smaller employers to have access to the same program.

In addition National are proposing to create an independent body to judge claims disputes – this is again very sensible. Claimants should not have to fight ACC all the way to court, and in court to have a claim accepted just because ACC has very deep pockets and wants to avoid a situation where a particular area may be opened up to ‘new’ claims. This policy could see ACC paying out more money for claims and increased coverage, so I don’t see this as being privatisation by stealth – quite the contrary!

I would really encourage people alarmed about what they are going to here over the next few weeks to go and check out the two policy statements – because they are very mild!

And no, I don’t belong to National, never have. I just think that last time employers got a bit of competition in ACC there was a saving – I know I was one – and given how things are in the economy anything that saves a bit of money is worth considering. In additional, just because something works, doesn’t mean it can’t be improved, and ACC can clearly be improved.

For some more commentary…

Chinese ‘not’ politicising Olympics

It’s great to see some consistency from the Chinese Regime. In keeping with their firm desire not to politicise the Olympics officials at a ceremony in Tibet ‘celebrating’ to torch relay keep politics well out of it with these sophisticated comments…

“remarks made during a ceremony marking the passage of the torch through Tibet. The Communist Party boss there spoke of “smashing the separatist plot of the Dalai Lama clique”. China said it had a “solid position against politicising the Olympics”.

Everyone knows they are full of it, but the double standards are quite breathtaking really. As I’ve said before these guys really desperately need some PR help, using words like ‘clique’ is soooo yesterday – as in cultural revolution yesterday. I guess the really impressive thing is that this bunch run a country with the largest population in the world and they’re still stuck in a surreal time warp where capitalist roaders and running dogs are conspiring against the people of China.

It’s curious how some people jump on the Americans for the slightest thing (especially Bush), but comments like this go un-commented on. This is the biggest country in the world and they get away with this sort of thing. Where are all the ‘defenders’ of human rights that bleat on about Guantanamo Bay and how awful the American Government is? We don’t see many films about Chinese or Tibetan citizens being carted off in their thousands to reeducation camps, but there’s plenty hype and fuss over a few hundred people the USA has locked up under dubious circumstances.

If people made as much fuss about the way the Chinese Regime behaves as they do about Bush, maybe there would be some more changes – because predictably, they have seen the awarding of Olympics as an affirmation of their rule and have no intention of loosening on human rights up as some people have nievely suggested.