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The Standard

A hell of a speech

Written By: - Date published: 10:40 am, March 22nd, 2011 - 71 comments
Categories: election 2011, nz first - Tags: , , , ,

Recession

The worldwide recession is not your fault.

It was caused by the greedies in the banking and finance industry.

To make extra profits and to earn huge bonuses, US financiers created a scheme by which they packaged shonky mortgages and sold them as prime investments.

As well, banks and finance houses in many parts of the Western world went on a lending spree that pushed up property prices, creating a big bubble that burst.

Governments and ordinary people were left to clean up the mess. The cleaning up is continuing and it will take a long time.

Not content with crashing the democratic world’s financial systems, the greedies are back in action gambling on the price of commodities.

Food, oil, whatever you can think of is being bought and sold many times before it even gets to the factory that processes it.

It’s a new way for the greedies behind computer screens to suck billions out of the pockets of ordinary people.

You are at the bottom of the food chain.

It’s called “globalisation” and you’ll hear just about every so-called financial expert saying what a good thing it is.

What they really mean is that it is a good thing for them.

The New Zealand economy is the plaything of international currency traders and speculators.

Our currency is one of the most volatile on the planet.

We keep hearing about the virtues of the free market. Trouble is it’s not free to the families trying to make do on low incomes or pensioners facing a long cold winter with big power bills.

Budget

You are being softened up for cuts in social spending in the next Budget.

Every day the Prime Minister and senior cabinet ministers tell the nation how bad things are.

And every day a new figure of ten, fifteen, twenty billion is thrown about as the amount of extra money the government will need.

This is a clear signal that more state assets will be sold than the government is letting on.

Surely someone, somewhere in this government knows the folly of selling state assets.

For example, the state companies that generate electricity are going to be partially privatised.

Now why would anyone of sane mind sell off its only renewable sources of energy.

Make no mistake.

If our power stations are part of a public share float they will end up owned overseas.

Probably by China because China is one of the few countries that are in the black.

Why are they in the black?

Because they are a one party state with a planned economy, a strictly controlled workforce and a forest of factories handed over by industrial leaders in the West.

They’ve gone to China because manufacturing is cheaper where the workers get paid a few dollars and a bowl of rice a day.

So why would we hand over our energy generating resources?

Between 1984 and 1996 Labour and National governments privatised and sold off huge chunks of state owned assets.

They were sold for a song and companies like Telecom have made a killing for their overseas owners.

NZ First

The most important party for senior citizens for the next few years will be New Zealand First.

People in powerful places have decided that our party stands in the way of their grand designs so they have tried to take us out.

If we were gone your pension would be reduced tomorrow and your SuperGold card would be worthless.

As well, the age of eligibility would be lifted.

We are your insurance so don’t forget to pay it!

And remember we are extending the SuperGold card into senior medical care next year when we get back.

There will be a free medical; check each year for over 65s and doctors visits will be capped at ten dollars.

We cannot continue with a situation in which elderly people cannot afford to go to the doctor.

Position For Election

So let me explain what our position is for the election this year.

If you don’t want to vote for National, vote for New Zealand First.

If you don’t want to vote for Labour, vote for New Zealand First.

If you don’t want the others, vote for New Zealand First.

If we have to, and if that is what NZ First decides, we will be pleased to sit on the cross benches guarding the interests of ALL New Zealanders.

We have done it before.

National and Labour can look after themselves.

We will support legislation that’s in line with New Zealand First policies.

And we will always support any policy or idea that’s good for the country – no matter where it comes from.

We have done it before.

In return we will expect support for our initiatives.

This makes our position clear.

No pre-election deals, no nudge-nudge, wink-wink political horse trading before you the voters have spoken.

Those who argue for pre-election deals are trying to weaken your vote.

Don’t let them.

Instead of doing pre-election deals, we will concentrate on the big issues facing New Zealanders.

You were promised before the last election there would be no increase in GST.

That’s right – you will find the clip on YouTube in which John Key says National would not increase GST.

To that we say …yeah right!

If we look back at that exercise in tax fiddles this is what happened.

The wealthy people at the top – the people this government looks after did very well.

Look for example, as the boss of the Australian bank Westpac in New Zealand.

His salary is $5.6 million dollars.

When John Key handed out his tax cuts – the bank boss got more than $5,000 a week extra.

That’s right $5,000 a week extra because of his tax cut.

Now for the unfairness of it all.

National recently lifted the minimum wage by 25 cents an hour to $13 an hour.

That means someone on the minimum wage – and there are thousands of them – now receives just over $27,000 a year.

That amounts to about $437 a week take home pay.

It’s easy to see the people this government is looking after.

If you are a bank boss on $5.6million, helping cause a recession, you get an extra five thousand a week.

If you are on the minimum wage – you get an extra 25 cents an hour.

And hope you don’t have too far to walk to the local foodbank.

This policy also hits the pockets of those people receiving the pension.

If pay rates are kept down, your superannuation payments are kept down as well.

And here’s something else to think about. How can a single pensioner live on just over $330 a week in these times of explosive food prices, rising power costs, rising petrol costs and government charges that go up every time you look at them?

Times are tough through no fault of your own. And we commend those thousands of New Zealanders who look after each other and help each other out.

You paid your dues while in the workforce. You raised your kids, did work for the community and kept your side of the bargain.

Now you are regarded as a public expense when you really are a public asset. Each and every one of you.

Your parents and their parents tried to make this country special. WE led the world in social advances.

It is our duty to restore our country to the caring egalitarian society they were proud of.

WE CAN do it again. Help us make it happen.

Speech by Winston Peters, NZF, to Ashburton Grey Power, 21 March 2011.

71 comments on “A hell of a speech”

  1. ianmac 1

    Laid out in very clear simple terms. As an ordinary not economics sort of chap I can get this. Perhaps Mr Goff could get lessons on how to present clear unequivocal messages.
    Anyway whose speech was this? Winston’s? I wonder why Key sees Winston Peters as a threat? Mmmmm……

    • lprent 1.1

      Ummm. Putting in who gave the speech would help. Perhaps whoever posted this would oblige.

      But at a guess I’d say that it is Winston Peters… Bugger I was hoping we were quit of him. But this is exactly the type of thing that I suspect will bring him back into the house.

      [I didn’t post it. I wondered if not mentioning Peters in the post was a deliberate strategy? I read it thinking damn, good speech, then had the slowly dawning horror as I gradually worked out who it was! But I’ll add the details in at the end. — r0b]

      • Pat 1.1.1

        Perhaps a Who, When and Where would help.

      • Marty G 1.1.2

        I wasn’t going to mention who gave it until the end, for exactly the effect r0b got. But I guess I thought the pic and the tags gave the game away without need for anything else. :-)

        Simply, it’s the best speech I’ve seen in years, I didn’t think it needed any analysis from me and I wanted to leave the debate wide open, so I put it up under the standard

        • Richard 1.1.2.1

          I agree it is a great speech.

          It certainly is superior to anything Labour has produced recently. Peters had a speech similar to this a month or so previously, too.

          If I didn’t know who Winston Peters was, or had forgotten his past, I would vote for him on the basis of speeches like this.

          • the sprout 1.1.2.1.1

            Indeed an excellent speech, and by providing such an example to compare with – yet another sad reminder of the resounding hopelessness of the current Labour leadership and its comms and strategy team.

            If he stands in Epsom, as I’ve been suggesting for over a year now, I’ll be sorely tempted to help with his campaign. That’s from a founding and still current Century Fund member, someone whose given thousands of volunteer hours campaigning for Labour, from someone whose campaigned against NZF in the past because many of their policies I detest. But honestly, I think NZF will be more effective in removing Key than Goff will ever be.

            Believe me, it feels very odd to think Peters offers more of something I can believe in than Labour.

            • Richard 1.1.2.1.1.1

              Believe me, it feels very odd to think Peters offers more of something I can believe in than Labour.

              Yeah.

              I’m not sure that I can quite believe that he has any intent/capability to substantially following through on this rhetoric.

              But the rhetoric itself I like.

          • LynW 1.1.2.1.2

            This is a superb summary of events delivered simply and clearly so a wide audience of New Zealanders can understand and relate to it. A wonderful speech. Why has this not come from Labour?! Well I do know who Winston Peters is, and the past I mainly remember him for is the Winebox enquiry and I have to say I admired his tenacity through that. The later stuff was so confusing to me that I didn’t link him with dishonesty, just political fallout! I am not as well informed as you political commentators are but I will now look further into NZ First’s policies because I am sitting up and LISTENING! I know my elderly parents have been listening to him for a while and this will probably cement their support for him. Note for the first time in my fathers life he didn’t vote last election (usually Labour, definite left leaning voter) such was his disappointment with Labour ( at least he didn’t vote for Key! ) and my Mum has always supported Labour. Funnily enough my brother-in-law who voted Act last election has already been saying he will vote for Peters. His appeal should not be underestimated.

          • Salsy 1.1.2.1.3

            Agreed, its almost as good as his trip to the third world speech, given in greymouth last year. Winston has an incredible ability to write simple speeches that threaten and terrify almost all of New Zealand. I had a realisation some time ago that Winston is a wild card indeed, far too radical for for many of us – but just radical enough to terrify those swing voters back into the safe pens of Labour.. Look out Key, Winston can already smell the blood.

            • Pete 1.1.2.1.3.1

              Ah, so Labour are going to try and safely sloganise their way to the election, and rely on National to lose the election and for Winston to win it for them. All they have to do is line up afterwards and a compliant willing bunch will fall in behind them.

              A cunning strategy that relies on everyone else and all they have to do is to wait for their rightful (leftful?) place at the head of the table.

              • Salsy

                Yes you hit the nail on the head. Almost as sneaky & effective as the old Labour-Lite trick huh?

        • lprent 1.1.2.2

          …I didn’t think it needed any analysis from me and I wanted to leave the debate wide open, so I put it up under the standard

          Oh I agree. The Standard is exactly right. Damnit the speech stands on its own without analysis.

          What r0b has done is exactly right. I came into the post from the side navs rather than from the front page so I didn’t see the picture. Like r0b, I was thinking good speech and then had a horrible sinking feeling when it said “NZ First” a fair way down.

        • The Baron 1.1.2.3

          I’d agree that it is the best speech in years in terms of how it is written and how effective it is. no surprise though – this is winston, and this has always been his strongest suit.

          but the ideas in here about supergold benefits and pensions are truly fucking frightening. we already face a demographic timebomb, and all winston seems to want to do is shorten the fuse.

          don’t get me wrong – the elderly aren’t on the streets in my world. but funding the current suite of entitlements for the elderly is already an emerging problem. these would make it far worse.

          • the sprout 1.1.2.3.1

            funding the current suite of entitlements for the elderly

            classic Baron, ‘suite of entitlements’. 😆

            that is so true – and now National have stopped pre-funding national superannuation there won’t be any such things for my and subsequent generations come retirement.

            much better instead to fund the current ‘suite of entitlements’ for the rich.

    • Anne 1.2

      Yes ianmac I agree with you. It’s not only Phil Goff who needs to learn how to present clear unequivocal messages but some of his senior colleagues as well. Perhaps they need to place themselves (mentally) at the head of Jo and Mary Bloggs’ dinner table when doing interviews and responding to reporters’ questions, instead of a university lecture theatre?

      And if WP continues to make speeches like that watch out! He will take votes roughly equally from Labour and National and… whoever gets to form the next govt. will have to include NZ First whether they like it or not.

      • Bored 1.2.1

        Too right, the buggers are still mentally “managing” things really well, being good little parliamentarians doing committee work etc. Post Geoff Palmer they are all “professionals” who follow a proscribed management style. can you imagine Norm Kirk tamely following this model? He prefered to prop up the bar with real working people. Labour wont rock the boat too much, just provide a respectable grey boring alternative, must not frighten the horses too much.

        Winston meanwhile, love him or loathe him understands that the job is not about managing, its about rhetoric and debate, getting the message across. Who in Labour will thump the tubs?

        • Shane Gallagher 1.2.1.1

          Matthew Hooten (and I am choking whilst writing this) actual said something I agree with… that the Labour caucus don’t think they are going to win – don’t want to really fight to win because it is risky – and are quite content to hang on to their seats. It is bloody depressing but I think explains their behaviour… They are too comfortable and out of touch of the reality of most people’s daily struggle to survive. There are some exceptions but they do not have the hunger to win – nothing like it.

          • the sprout 1.2.1.1.1

            i get the distinct impression the Labour caucus doesn’t want to win, or certainly don’t want to risk anything to attempt winning.

            • Bored 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Shane / Sprout, cant deny your comments, it is pretty depressing from that viewpoint. We are at an apex of history, peak bloody everything and a challenge to our societies survival….and neither side really think that the crisis is real. If our democracy as represented by the Nats and Labs fails to rise to the challenges of managed economic contraction and social distribution something else will. Its not only depressing, its fekkin dangerous.

  2. Yeah yeah… it’s a pity we can’t trust Uncle Winnie to look after our interests first before his own though eh ?

    NZ first party should be called, ‘Winston First, NZ second party.’

    • Bored 2.1

      Gooday Polly, you dont expect transparency and honesty really do you? OK I thought not, so lets phrase it another way…”Can we trust Winston First more than Labour or Nact to look after our pension etc?”

      (PS Winston First and Horitocracy…pretty good monickers methinks, excellent).

  3. grumpy 3

    He is “The Master”, like him or loath him, his speeches are superb.

    The perfect Opposition leader, why don’t Labour and NZF join forces and make Winston leader, they could even win!

    • Matt 3.1

      The problem with that idea is that Labour has been overun in the past couple of years by Liberal pushover members who are more prepared to want a smiling goon like Key then someone like Phil or Winston who will stand up and speak out even if the PC media dont like what they are saying

  4. apples are yum 4

    So that’s the outline of the trojan horse, what’s inside?

    • Bored 4.1

      A cardboard box bereft of bottles (but with a full audit trail of commercial criminality that when put before the courts proved the active connivance of the system to protect its “own”).

  5. Pete 5

    Speech subtitle – buying old people’s votes first.
    With the aim of following with by Baubles First.

  6. Alwyn 6

    I see Winston left out one bribe being considered for the Oldies.
    I have been told that he has been trying to decide whether offering free Viagra to everyone over 65 would be a vote winner.
    The other three members of the NZF party can’t make up their minds.
    One claimed it would get all the men’s votes.
    One said it would lose all the women’s votes.
    The third apparently wanted to know what Viagra was.

  7. Lanthanide 7

    I want to vote for the things he’s talking about. But I don’t trust him.

    I wish Goff would say these things so then I’d have no problem voting for him.

  8. higherstandard 8

    Look you’re a grumpy bunch of old twats therefore let me list a whole lot of things to moan about.

    Waffle waffle blah blah blah, they’re all evil I’ve got great hair and I’m very charming so vote for me.

    • grumpy 8.1

      Please don’t use the words grumpy and twats in the same sentance – I’m having a hell of a time on another thread :-)

  9. Rich 9

    Racism and bigotry isn’t the answer. If people like Peters get traction, they’ll be coopted by the very people he’s attacking.

    • Draco T Bastard 9.1

      Racism and bigotry isn’t the answer.

      Didn’t see either in the speech so WTF are you talking about?

      • Rich 9.1.1

        It’s Winston Peters we’re talking about here.

        Just because he didn’t come up with his usual attacks on “asians” at this juncture, doesn’t mean he doesn’t still believe it.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.1

          Is it because he’s racist against Asians or just doesn’t want NZ owned by anyone other than NZers and thus using “Asians” as a hot button due to their growing economic clout?

      • mcflock 9.1.2

        to be fair, Winston has played that card before.

        He needs to atone for it in the same way that Labour need to atone for Rogernomics.

  10. Colonial Viper 10

    Yeah this speech is a corker.

    Winston leans a bit hard on the old folk, but does enough to get support from a much wider range of New Zealanders.

    He’s stuck in a few lines about – possibly – not chasing Ministerial baubles as well :)

    Damn fine Left leaning rhetoric, a perfect mix of past and present. Nice. (Given that it’s Winston of course).

    And hey, thanks John Key, by ruling him out, you’ve given Winston permission to go WWAAAAAYYYYY Left. He’s got nothing to lose by doing so lol 😀

    • Lanthanide 10.1

      “And hey, thanks John Key, by ruling him out, you’ve given Winston permission to go WWAAAAAYYYYY Left. He’s got nothing to lose by doing so lol”

      I think he’s really capitalising on Labour and Goff’s poor showing, as well. If you don’t want National (because they branded themselves as Labour-Lite last time and you’re a sucker), but also don’t want Labour (because they seem to have no vision or solutions), then vote NZFirst!

    • Matt 10.2

      Yeah and he has also given Winston the chance to attract the Conservative(on social views that is) vote from National so together with going more “Left” on economic policy Winston stands a good chance of stealing votes from BOTH National and Labour

  11. Kenny 11

    You can mock him all you like but there will be thousands out there taking all this in! People have had enough of all the bullshit.

    Come November don’t be surprised when he holds the balance of power

    • grumpy 11.1

      …”balance”….????

    • MrSmith 11.2

      I agree kenny, I have this picture in my head as I guess a lot of people do of Hide going after Winston for his dishonesty, but after the David garret affair Hide just has no credibility any more.
      I will take anything but another 3 long years of the Nacts stealing from the Poor and giving to the rich.

  12. Afewknowthetruth 12

    Peters is just about the slimiest liar of the whole lot.

    He will unbdoubtedly fool plenty people, YET AGAIN..

    What we are experiencing is not a ‘recession’: we are experiencing the early stages of the collpase of corrupt and inefficient system that has been transferring wealth upwards for over four hundred years; the system is now running out of energy and resources, and is polluting the planet to death.

    Most people prefer to ignore such realities and stick with their delusions about recovery and a ‘better brighter future’. Ha!

  13. ianmac 13

    And it is amazing that this speech given in little old Ashburton should resonate here?
    And imagine how Garner and Ralston will react. Garner became explosively obsessed with Winston in 2008 as did Hooten. And smugly Key. Perhaps Winston is really a threat should he become “born again.”

  14. sweetd 14

    Whose money is he spending for election? Is NZ First eligible for any monies? Not being on telly will be the killer come election time.

    • marco 14.1

      If he stands in either Key or Hide’s electorate he will get all the TV he needs.

      I like Winston, but have always steered clear of him because of his borderline racist rhetoric. If he can distance himself from that, as well as keeping Michael Laws at arms length, he may just pull this off.

      National have moved further towards the rich, Labour have moved further left. Whilst middle NZ can relate to unions and business owners, they struggle with the self righteousness of the academic left. The middle is there for the taking and only NZ First are speaking their language. It’s going to be an interesting election.

  15. vto 15

    Peters often makes some good sense.

    Unfortunately he is his own worst enemy. He is bound to make all the same mistakes again like lying and hypocrisy and baubles and on it goes.

    Mind you if he can help tip Key out then perhaps he could be tolerated in a minor way.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      The main question is – who is the team he has around him? That is what could make all the difference in his performance this year.

    • ianmac 15.2

      vto. “lying and hypocrisy and baubles and on it goes.” I’m interested in religion but am not an atheist. I am interest in politics but am not a Winston voter.
      I am therefore curious about the constant repetition of comments like yours. The accusations and the evidence seems to me to be about the same as for Key or Hide or whoever yet the moment that Peters is mentioned out comes the oft quoted “lying and hypocrisy and baubles and on it goes.” Peters posed a huge threat to NAct and are we so gullible that we still buy their “lying and hypocrisy and baubles and on it goes?”

      • vto 15.2.1

        Well I completely agree with you ianmac. They are all the same – they twist the truth, display blatant hypocrisy, and line their pockets with the baubles of office. I don’t have an answer. Perhaps it is simply that Peters has done it more? Or more loudly? Or more blatantly?

        For me personally I can’t stand the twat because imo he has displayed simply more of those characteristics than anyone else. He is the worst, though the others are chasing his heels.

        • the sprout 15.2.1.1

          not surprising the right are worried about him

        • logie97 15.2.1.2

          And the perk buster, who spent an inordinate amount of his time in opposition (in harness with Judith Collins) on his character assassination of Peters – pursued him with an unhealthy vengeance – has certainly enjoyed the baubles of office. (Ultra expensive European jaunts on the tax payer? And he is so proud of what he has achieved, and so proud of how he managed Garrett and so proud of the way Garrett resigned. Oh he is so proud. And what is it they say about pride…?

          • Swampy 15.2.1.2.1

            Who was the first perk buster (along with everything else buster i.e. Whistleblower extraordinaire)? Winston way back in the 80s, Wikileaks had nothing on him. Those days are long gone though aren’t they. And Winnie is very fond of the baubles as we all know. Which is about all he has a clue about in office.

  16. tc 16

    This gap in position exists because Phildo and Labour have allowed it to, this speech is exactly the type of speech I’d expect from Goff but all you get is waffle and a snooze rendering delivery.

    The NACT/MP have sown the seeds of their demise but Labour appear incapable of raising those seeds into the flowering plant of victory for themselves..I genuinely despair at Goff’s pathetic leadership, best he can do is let some young blood take it on like Parker/Cunliffe and focus on Sideshow John. Less is more Phildo, step aside as you’ve lost the plot/energy and drive.

  17. logie97 17

    Now THIS is a speech of substance… Mustafa Kemel Ataturk – 1934 ANZAC Memorial at Gallipoli, Turkey

    Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives..
    you are now lying in the soil of a friendly country.
    Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies
    and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours.
    You the mothers who sent their sons from far away countries wipe away your tears.
    Your sons are now living in our bosom and are in peace.
    Having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.

  18. chris73 18

    I’d sooner vote Labour then this short-arse liar

  19. gobsmacked 19

    I wouldn’t vote for Winston because of his previous record – the appeals to bigotry, racist dog-whistles.

    But here’s the thing. He spouted nasty rhetoric in opposition – and then once he got his baubles (under both National and Labour) he quietly changed his tune.

    Whereas ACT are beating the racist drum now, and they’re in government.. Which is much worse. And of course Don Brash is joining in.

    (note – for the benefit of National-voting amnesiacs … Orewa Brash was your hero, even though you now pretend he doesn’t exist. Loyal bunch, aren’t you?).

    • chris73 19.1

      Actually I regret the tactical errors he made (not keeping his trousers on, not being upfront with the bretheren etc etc) which kept him from winning the election

      I believe he would have made a fine leader of this country

      Ah well such is life

      • Pascal's bookie 19.1.1

        tactical errors. Good one.

        Also, he was pretty upfront with the bretheren chris, it was everyone else that he bullshitted to.

  20. Armchair Critic 20

    Great rhetoric, it will attract votes. Thing that springs to mind is that the enemy of my enemy is not neccesarily my friend. I don’t trust Winston.

    • M 20.1

      Agreed AC, but I do have to salute Winston on his clear and direct points. The one thing I can remember where he did some good was the scheme where doctors’ visits for the under sixes were free which was a real boon at the time as it seemed that I almost had a weekly standing appointment for the kids at the time.

      Anti-spam: manipulation

  21. Daveosaurus 21

    I’m disappointed to see this old crook being given the oxygen of publicity. He’s just making a pitch for some of the racist vote that National has been haemorrhaging since they got into government and into coalition with the Maori Party. Currently it looks like Peters is picking up the anti-Asian vote and ACT is picking up the anti-Maori vote. Let’s hope both of them get 4.5% of the vote in November, and that Hide loses his seat.

  22. burt 22

    The privileges committee finding you guilty of telling lies is not your fault.

    It was caused by the rich pricks who lent you money refusing to lie about it…

    Yip it was Winston.

    • Steven 22.1

      the Privileges Committee found him guilty wow really? and yet following the 2008 election both the serious fraud office and the New Zealand police found that he had done nothing wrong. wow the privileges committee which is/was made up of members of parliament (including national party members) must be more accurate than the serious fraud office and the New Zealand Police. I cant believe i ever thought that the serious fraud office is in some way a more authoritative source than a group of MP’s. thank you for enlightening me Burt.

  23. Swampy 23

    Yawn, it’s the same old Winston Peters golden oldie rhetoric for the only group of voters blind or senile enough to support him. Everyone else has seen how useless he actually is when he gets into office.

    Let’s admit it, his party is more and more a one man band every day, they must have long since given up the pretence of being broad based or anything like it. Is there any kind of party machine behind Winnie these days or is it like Jim Andertons outfit.

  24. Samuel Hill 24

    Every politician has lied to the public at some point.

    Winston Peters is currently the greatest political opponent to John Key because he is the Western political-economic ideological opposite. If Peters is able to get enough people together he could get his party big enough to challenge Labour as the second party in the country. I doubt NZ First has the people power to provide such a grassroots operation, but Peters’ message has been consistent since the late 1980s, and it seems that in these times we certainly are going to be subject to direct central command from Wellington. It is already happening. Best we get as many disruptive people in opposition and making as much noise as possible to bring down National. Maybe in 6 years there will be a big enough group on the left of Labour, Greens, NZ First and Maori supporters to form a new coalition. And yes we all know how interesting they can be, but it is exactly what will have to happen to keep the balance of things.

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    A damning conclusion by the Children’s Commissioner today that ‘we don’t know if children are better off as a result of state intervention, but the indications are not good’ should make fixing CYFs a top priority for this Government, says… ...
    24 hours ago
  • Dodgy data used to justify axing KiwiSaver kickstart
    National’s agenda to run down KiwiSaver has become even clearer from a scathing critique of the Government’s justification for axing the $1000 kickstart, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Since National came to power they have not only continually undermined… ...
    1 day ago
  • Unsecure website risks Ashley MoBIEson hack
    Experts have raised security concerns that vulnerabilities in MoBIE’s half million-dollar website could lead to a possible Ashley Maddison-style hack, says Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark. “The real issue here is not what data is immediately available, but what… ...
    2 days ago
  • Democracy still the loser in Canterbury
    The Government has demonstrated once again how arrogant and out of touch it is in denying Cantabrians the same democratic rights as the rest of the country, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods.  “The Environment Canterbury Bill which has been… ...
    2 days ago
  • Waiver cost still a mystery
    The Government still has no idea what it’s going to cost community and voluntary groups to get a waiver from the fees police will charge to carry out checks on their staff and volunteers, says Labour’s Community and Voluntary spokesperson… ...
    2 days ago
  • China exports fall 27 per cent in a year
    Exports to China have fallen by 27 per cent over the last 12 months - showing that the looming economic slowdown should have been expected by the Government, says Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark. “The Chinese economic slowdown should… ...
    2 days ago
  • National should support all families for 26 weeks
    Families with multiple babies, and those born prematurely or with disabilities, are the winners from moves to extend paid parental leave to 26 weeks but the Government must give all babies the same head start in life, Labour’s spokesperson for… ...
    2 days ago
  • National’s health and safety shambles puts school camps at risk
    Reports that schools are considering scrapping student camps and tearing out playgrounds highlights just how badly National has managed its health and safety reforms, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Schools have been left completely in the dark about the… ...
    2 days ago
  • National’s asset stripping agenda hits schools
    National’s fire-sale of school houses and land is short-sighted, mean-spirited, and will have huge unintended consequences that we will pay for in years to come, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. Documents obtained by Labour show the Ministry of Education… ...
    2 days ago
  • Takahe massacre supposed to get all New Zealanders involved in conservation
    The Minister’s claim that a  botched cull of one of New Zealand’s rarest birds was a way of getting all New Zealanders involved in conservation is offensive and ludicrous, Labour’s conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson says.  “An email from Minister Maggie… ...
    3 days ago
  • Serco circus rolls on with revelations of fight club practice
    Further revelations that a Serco prison guard was coaching inmates on fight club techniques confirms a fully independent inquiry needs to take place, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The Minister’s statement today that a guard was coaching sparring techniques… ...
    3 days ago
  • Government targets put ahead of students’ education
    The Government must urgently reassess the way it sets NCEA targets after a new report found they are forcing schools to “credit farm” and are undermining the qualification, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “A PPTA report released today says… ...
    3 days ago
  • ER patients in corridors as health cuts bite
    Patients are being forced to wait for hours on beds in corridors as cash strapped hospitals struggle to keep up with budget cuts, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King. “People coming to the emergency room and being forced to wait… ...
    3 days ago
  • Not too late to fix Health and Safety for New Zealand’s workers
    The Government and its minor party supporters are showing an arrogant disregard for workers’ lives by not agreeing to a cross-party solution to the botched Health and Safety bill, Opposition leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday I wrote to the Prime… ...
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Council of Infrastructure Development
    Tēnā Kotou Katoa. Thank you so much for having me along to speak today. Can I begin by acknowledging John Rae, the President, and Stephen Selwood, the chief executive of the Council for Infrastructure Development. ...
    4 days ago
  • Reserve Bank points finger at Govt inaction
    In scathing criticism of the Government’s inaction, the Reserve Bank says Auckland housing supply is growing nowhere near fast enough to make a dent the housing shortage, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Reserve Bank deputy governor Grant Spencer today… ...
    4 days ago
  • Chickens come home to roost on climate change
    The Government’s gutting of the Emissions Trading Scheme has caused foresters to leave and emissions to rise, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods. “The release of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Facts and Figures Report for 2014 on the ETS… ...
    4 days ago
  • Website adds to long list of big spends at MBIE
    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s $560,000 outlay on its new website is further evidence of excessive spending by Steven Joyce on his pet project super ministry, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David Clark says.  “Hot on the heels of… ...
    4 days ago
  • Brownlee warned over EQC repairs but ignored them
    Gerry Brownlee was warned that EQC’s underfloor repairs weren’t being done properly by industry experts, the cross party working group and in public but he arrogantly ignored them all, says Labour’s Earthquake Commission spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove.  “Today’s apology and commitment… ...
    4 days ago
  • Serco wants in on state house sell off
    The Government must keep scandal plagued outsourcing company Serco away from our state housing after their disastrous record running Mt Eden prison, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Today it has emerged that at the same time Serco was under… ...
    6 days ago
  • Come clean on Pasifika education centre
    Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iinga needs to come clean and tell the Pasifika communities if he’s working to save the Pasifika Education Centre or shut it down, Labour’s Pasifika spokesperson Su’a William Sio says.  “I’m gutted the Pasifika Education Centre funding… ...
    7 days ago
  • Time for NZTA to work on alternatives to flyover
    The High Court decision rejecting the New Zealand Transport Agency’s attempts to build the Basin Reserve flyover must now mean that NZTA finally works with the community on other options for transport solutions in Wellington, Grant Robertson and Annette King… ...
    7 days ago
  • Shiny new system leads to record truancy
    Record high truancy rates shows the Government’s much-vaunted new attendance system is an abysmal failure, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Data released today shows truancy rates have spiked more than 15 per cent in 2014 and are now at… ...
    7 days ago
  • Woodhouse wrong about quarries
      The Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety Michael Woodhouse was wrong yesterday when he said limestone quarries were covered by the farcical Health and Safety legislation, says Labour’s Associate Labour spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “He said he ‘understood’ limestone quarries… ...
    7 days ago
  • Taxpayers money spent on culling one of our rarest birds
    It beggars belief that four endangered takahe were killed by incompetent cullers contracted to the Department of Conservation and the Minister must explain this wanton destruction, says Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It must not be forgotten that there are only… ...
    7 days ago
  • Housing NZ must immediately move family
    Housing New Zealand must immediately move a Glen Innes family whose son contracted serious and potentially fatal health problems from the appalling condition of their state house, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Te Ao Marama Wensor and community workers… ...
    7 days ago
  • No understanding of the value of overseas investment
     The Government has now admitted it has absolutely no idea of the actual value of foreign investment in New Zealand, says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash.  “It is crucial that the Government starts to understand just what this overseas… ...
    1 week ago
  • Another bridges bribe from Simon Bridges
    Simon Bridges is embroiled in another bridges-for-votes controversy after admitting funding for a replacement bridge in Queenstown is “very much about… the 2017 election”, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Transport Minister is today reported as telling Queenstown locals… ...
    1 week ago
  • Saudi tender process reeks of SkyCity approach
    The tender process for the $6m investment in a Saudi sheep farm reeks like the SkyCity convention centre deal and once again contravenes the government’s own procurement rules, says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson David Parker. “The $6m contract… ...
    1 week ago
  • Maori Party should stand up for workers
    The Government’s proposed Health and Safety Reform Bill does not go far enough to protect those in specific industries with the highest rates of workplace deaths, says Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “We are told that Maori workers are more… ...
    1 week ago
  • Minister must explain budget blowout
    Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell must explain a budget blow out at Te Puni Kokiri, after the organisation spent more than 2.5 million dollars over their budget for contractors, says Labour’s Associate Māori Development spokesperson Peeni Henare.  “For the… ...
    1 week ago
  • Successful effort to raise the issue of GE trees in proposed standard
    Many thousands of people submitted on the proposed National Environmental Standard –  Plantation Forestry (NES-PF).  A vast majority of the public submissions were particularly focussed on the NES having included GE trees in its mandate. People want these provisions removed,… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Fair Share Friday – Thoughts and Reflections
    As part of our Fair Share  campaign, Green MPs have been doing a series of visits to community groups across the country to have conversations about inequality in New Zealand and what communities are experiencing on the ground. I visited… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Crucial Auditor General investigation welcomed
    The Auditor General’s decision to investigate the Saudi sheep scandal is important, necessary and welcome, Labour’s Trade and Export Growth spokesperson David Parker says. “The independent functions of the Auditor General are a cornerstone of the New Zealand system of… ...
    1 week ago
  • KiwiSaver sign-ups continue to fall
    New KiwiSaver sign-ups in July were 45 per cent below the monthly average, despite John Key saying axing the kickstart “will not make a blind bit of difference to the number of people who join KiwiSaver”, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson… ...
    1 week ago
  • Contact bows to pressure
    Contact Energy’s decision to cut its pre-pay rates to be in line with its customers who pay monthly is good news and the company deserves credit for responding so quickly, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs Spokesperson David Shearer.  “Two months ago… ...
    1 week ago
  • I’m pushing for a ‘fair go’ for solar
    My Fair Go For Solar Bill was pulled from the Members’ Ballot last week and is set for a vote in Parliament. In this blog post I explain some of the background to the bill and how it aims to… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 week ago
  • Key must explain why Health and Safety Bill pulled
    John Key must explain why his Government is delaying the Health and Safety Bill when Pike River families have travelled to Wellington specifically to register their opposition, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Yesterday afternoon John Key suggested the bill may… ...
    1 week ago
  • Diving for sustainable scallops
    Last week, there were calls for scallop dredging to be banned in the Marlborough Sounds, following scientific report saying that 70% of the Sounds had been lost from dredging, trawling, and sedimentation from forestry. At the same time we see… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Backdown whiff in state house leasing option
    Bill English’s admission that the Government is looking at leasing large numbers of state houses to non-government providers has the whiff of a backdown, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “This is an acknowledgement by Bill English that he has… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing crisis downgrade threatening banking sector
    The out of control Auckland housing market is now threatening the banking sector, with Standard and Poor’s downgrading the credit rating of our banks out of fear of the bubble bursting, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Today we have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Good money after bad for failed experiment
    The National government are throwing good money after bad with their decision to pump even more funding into their failed charter school experiment, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says.  “There are already major problems with several of the first charter… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National borrows Labour’s idea on urban development
    Labour's Associate Environment spokesperson Phil Twyford says he welcomes the Government's adoption of Labour's policy for a National Policy Statement on urban development, and has called on the Government to take up Labour's offer to work together on these issues.… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Toothless OIO never refused a single farmland sale
    The Overseas Investment Office has approved more than 290 consents from foreign investors to buy sensitive land in New Zealand, but has not turned down a single application says Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash  “The Minister of Land information,… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Secret meetings to sell-off state houses
    The Government is having secret meetings with groups interested in buying state houses and refuses to release the names of these organisations, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Bill English has admitted meeting with 10 organisations who want to get… ...
    2 weeks ago

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