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Winston Peters: Coming Back - Ready Or Not

4 June 2002

RT HON WINSTON PETERS

SPEECH TO OPOTIKI GREY POWER

SENIOR CITIZENS HALL

KING STREET, OPOTIKI.

2pm Tuesday 4 June 2002.

Coming Back - Ready Or Not

There is an election coming. You know that, we all know that. The Prime Minister even knows when.........but she isn’t telling.

There is no real reason why this election should be early......except that the PM thinks that she should strike while the polls are up, Billy Boy is on the canvas, Michelle is boaging anything over 40 with parliamentary experience, Jim is not a member of the Progressive Coalition of the Former Alliance of the old New Labour Party - and is really following a tortuous trip back to joining Labour. Meanwhile the Greens are talking their way to GE heaven.

But there is no sound constitutional reason for the PM to call an early election.

She may say that there is endless media speculation, much of which her office has fuelled. Business leaders may say that this is affecting business confidence and the majority of our citizens may not give a toss BUT........Ms Clark could end the speculation and say that this government will go full term. They have no problem with supply and confidence. New Zealand First has seen to that by acting responsibly and will continue to do so.

We are ready for an election but we don’t think New Zealanders should be short changed by dubious Labour strategies. Every American knows the exact election date for the year 3000 so why doesn’t Helen Clark tell you when you are going to exercise your democratic right this year. Because she’s not sure she’s ready ....that’s why.

Whenever the election is held let me assure of one thing: New Zealand First will be a pivotal part of the new Parliament - on two accounts: the Member for Tauranga will still be the Member for Tauranga with a greatly enhanced majority, and he will have a bigger team because our party vote will be increased.

Big talk?

Well, think about the potential scenarios:

Labour wants to govern alone....does that scare you? It should. Remember 1984-1990 when they didn’t need anyone else?

The Greens want to be in coalition but they threaten to bring the government down if they don’t get their way.

Jim Anderton is really rejoining the Labour Party and the Alliance will wither and die.

ACT need National to win if they are to hold any sway and their economic policies and financial backers should really frighten you.

National are too busy boaging each other and selling calendars to be taken seriously at this election. Moreover if you read this June’s “Investigate” you will be absolutely alarmed at what this Party is capable of getting up to. The evidence this article presents demonstrates how rotten New Zealand politics is.

So, when you think about it, deep in your hearts, like us or lump us......you really need Winston Peters and New Zealand First.

We may not win many electorates but your Party vote is your chance to invest in a better future for all New Zealanders........to make New Zealand first again.

Why New Zealand First?

Let me first remind you about what the Party has achieved in its short political life and then let me remind you of what we stand for. Among a long list of achievements in our short time in Government we are proud to list:

- Free doctors visits and prescriptions for children under six

- Low inflation and lower interest and exchange rates

- 500 additional frontline police

- pay parity for teachers

- removal of the superannuation surtax

- maintenance of retirement incomes

- nationwide targeted screening for hepatitis B

- an extra $252m for elective surgery, funding for 32,000 more operations

- increased minimum wage

- $1.25 b additional education spending over three years and $55m for early education

- $1.5b additional funding to strengthen public health over three years having removed the profit motive and replaced CHEs with hospitals

- free influenza vaccines for the elderly

- stopped the privatisation of strategic assets

We all have our experience of what New Zealand is, a notion of what it has been, and our hopes and dreams, our vision, of what it might become.

Let me say first and foremost that New Zealand is the only place I want to be.

But it could be better.

It could be great again.

Where once we were famous for our scientists, explorers, writers and soldiers, for our athletes, our rugby prowess, and our innovation now we are suffering from the re-emergence of third world diseases and a failing economy.

This Government can’t expand our free health services to our kids but it can liberalise sex industry laws.

The number of our young people taking Ecstasy and other so-called party drugs has increased dramatically and we have the Green Party advocating smoking dak and clogging up the courts.

The Government can’t remove compliance costs from our businesses but it can find time to regulate against smoking.

People live and die in houses with no electricity. The gap between the haves and have-nots gets wider.

We send our sick to Australia for treatment while we open the doors of our health system to queue-jumping boat people.

One of them is suing the Government for wrongful detention!

Well, we may as well give him $150,000 just like we paid out the bloke who got out of jail in less time than his sentence said but later than his parole allowed and we paid him.

We paid him!

Like we pay all those civil servants to leave their jobs.

And we pay to keep Canadian fraudsters in jail.

And we pay for the new marae: the offices of the Treaty industry on the Terrace.....feeding off the grievance industry with no motivation to stop the gravy train and make the settlements.

We can’t sort out our Treaty settlements but we can promote same sex property issues that most didn’t want in the first place.

Every day we read about a murder, a rape, gang-related crime and violence. We don’t even bother to report crimes that once were treated very seriously.

There is no push to new production: to expand our exports, or to grow our economy.

The nature of our country is changing in an ad hoc way....with no planning, with no strategy, with no care.

16% of our population is Maori but 80% of our rhetoric focuses on things Maori.......with no benefit to any New Zealander, Maori or non-Maori.

There are more Asians in New Zealand today than Pacific Islanders. Most of both live in Auckland and yet Auckland cannot cope with the unplanned demands on its infrastructure.

Where is it all going, when will it stop, what is the plan?

In the not too distant future over a quarter of us will be over 65.

What will happen to superannuation? Who will generate the income to pay the taxes to provide the health and welfare services?

The cost of our food and petrol and drivers’ licences and electricity and car registration go up and so do our politicians salaries but we can’t pay our teachers.

We can’t train or retain enough health professionals.

We lack skilled trades-people.

Our talented young people take their debt and go overseas.

So we spend our money on researching drug education but lower the drinking age and shut down the de-tox facilities.

Our roads can’t cope, we run out of electricity, we’re buying back assets like rail and Air New Zealand that we sold for bargain basement prices to smart Kiwis who promptly took their money and taxes off -shore.

New Zealand as we knew it is broken.

Can we fix it?

Yes we can!

For 16 or 17 years we had our economics all wrong and we have paid a huge social price.

And Helen Clark and Labour haven’t got the policies right yet.

They are too busy.

Too busy on things PC, on OSH regulations, and human relations and diplomacy.

Too busy apologizing to Maori, to Chinese, to Samoan, to anyone we can pass our guilt off to.

Too busy liberalizing everything so that we retain no values.......the traditional family unit in New Zealand is in danger of being legislated out of existence.

So what will New Zealand First do? New Zealand First believes that:

1. New Zealanders are entitled to a political system they can feel confident about, and politicians they can rely on to represent them;

2. While we are many peoples with different customs, languages, religions and cultures we are one country, we are all New Zealanders first. A focus for New Zealand First during the next Parliamentary term will be the pursuit of policies that promote social cohesion. We will put an end to the Treaty of Waitangi grievance industry and cease platitudinous statements about the Treaty being inserted in our legislation.

3. New Zealand needs a clear strategy to boost export growth and employment. New Zealand First will implement a plan to treble exports by 2020. The principal aim of a Government should be full employment. Any person capable of work should be given the opportunity to do so and not relegated to welfare dependency. Our citizens should be able to look forward to the certainty of a dignified retirement based on a fund that can be invested in our economy and infrastructure.

4. There should be an end to the aimless restructuring of government services, a removal of unnecessary rules and regulations based on misguided political correctness, and a return to a public service ethic within the bureaucracy. Spending will be directed to the provision of high quality education and health professionals and to improving free access to enhanced public education and health services. New Zealand First will continue to fight to protect our social fabric and traditional family values.

5. It is time to mount a war against lawlessness by providing adequate police resources and powers, implementing realistic sentencing, instilling discipline in our young people, taking a very tough line on youth and recidivist offending, and aggressively targeting “entry level’ crime by those seeking to enter the crime industry.

6. New Zealand First will end ad hoc policy-making on immigration and stop using immigration as an excuse for our failure to train, skill, and employ our own people. We will not tolerate New Zealand being a haven for queue-jumping asylum seekers. Refugees will be accepted only from those who can contribute to a better way of life for all New Zealanders.

New Zealand is broken.

Can we fix it?

Can we fix it?

Yes we can! It is not too late.

The vote you have that really counts is your Party vote. Seek out your best representative with your electorate vote, but with your Party vote make an investment for New Zealand ......for the future of all New Zealanders.

New Zealand First needs your Party vote so that we can have a positive influence on rebuilding New Zealand.

Think about it. Do it.

Early election or three-year election: New Zealand First is coming back, coming back whether they are ready or not.

ENDS


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