Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Richard Prebble's Letter from Wellington 22/7/2002

RICHARD PREBBLE'S
Letter from Wellington

Monday 22nd July 2002

ACT's Rise

ACT's tracking polls at the weekend put the party at 10 percent - that's 13 MPs. ACT's focus groups say Richard Prebble "won" the third party leaders' debate. Last week ACT's website received a record 500,000 hits.

Issue-Based

ACT's rise is due to its focus on the real issues, with practical solutions.

1. Rising crime. The answer is the New York approach of Zero Tolerance, which targets first-level offenders and has reduced all crime by 60 percent in New York.

2. The economy. Only ACT has policies to achieve 4 percent-plus growth - cut company tax below Australia, to 28 percent, a top personal tax rate of 28 percent and a lower rate of 18 percent, giving a tax cut to every worker. This will encourage investment, growth and jobs.

3. Compliance costs. ACT will re-write the ACC, RMA, ERA and OSH laws to make them more business-friendly - a bonfire of regulations.

4. Education. Only ACT has opposed the politically-correct NCEA, which is dumbing down schools. ACT says for world-class standards we need external exams. For quality education we must pay good teachers more.

5. Hospital waiting lists. ACT's solution is to refer patients to the private sector if they have been waiting too long.

6. The Treaty. Other parties are now copying ACT's policy of a timetable for claims. ACT wants one law for all - a colour-blind government. All of ACT's solutions are based around more personal responsibility.

Media Coverage

The media still haven't discovered how to cover an MMP election. They have spent the last two years telling us that Helen Clark will be re-elected with over 50 percent, but the polls say the third parties will again decide who is the government. So here is the Letter's analysis of the third parties.

ACT

* Policies - see www.act.org.nz .
* Costings - fully-costed using the McLeod report.
* Candidates - all but one of the top 15 candidates have run their own business. ACT has more business experience than any other party.

Greens

* Policies - extreme left (carbon taxes, resource use taxes, against free trade, soft on crime, no more prisons, will legalise cannabis).
* Costings - none.
* Candidates - described by David Lange as 'loonies'.

NZ First

* Policies - spend, spend spend, but no costings. Increase national super to 72.5 percent of average wage (estimated cost $520M); universal student allowance ($450M); free GP visits ($82M); no income testing for geriatric care ($200M). Free up the Reserve Bank Act - i.e. inflation.
* Candidates - The NZ First website lists only 24 names. There are no CVs, so we don't know how many Tuku Morgans there are. But 'Wonton' Peters now claims to be the highest-ranked Asian candidate!

United Future

* Policies - only bottom-line policy is to create another department, 'as big as Treasury', to write reports about the family. What is the family? Peter Dunne says it includes everyone.
* The party says it is 'secular Christian'!

Mr Dunne sent the 'worm' soaring when he said he wanted to help for-eign doctors get registered. But in May this year, he voted against ACT's Medical Practitioners Amendment Bill (to help foreign doctors get registered) and he also voted against ACT's bill to put a time limit on Waitangi claims, and ACT's Truth-in-Sentencing Bill - policies he now says he supports.

Reviewgate

Gordon McLauchlan dedicated his column in the Weekend Herald to attacking Richard Prebble's performance on TVNZ's Sunday debate on law and order. McLauchlan calls Prebble "populist (which means unscrupulous opportunist)" and says he "chanted (his) usual slogans - Zero Tolerance, Do the crime, do the time ...". He also described Prebble's performance as "wooden".

McLauchlan then criticised the "professionalism" of the TVNZ team and Mike Hosking's performance as host.

The Letter calls Prebble's performance on Sunday a miracle. A check of his diary reveals he was on an aeroplane at the time of the Sunday debate. In fact, he has never appeared on any Sunday programme!

McLauchlan has clearly decided to review a programme without watching it - watching only gets in the way of his prejudices. His experience in the media has shown him you can tell any lie you like, as long as it's about ACT. The Herald runs a corrections column. How will they deal with the fact their book reviewer reviewed a TV programme he didn't watch?

Peanut Slabs

The demise of the Evening Post has seen two cost-saving measures - 1. The axing of 84 jobs, at a cost of $8.4 million 2. The scrapping of the traditional peanut slab for journalists who submit an item for the Diary. So the Letter is introducing our own peanut slab reward to our friends in the media who provide us with stories. And the first goes to a now-redundant Post journo!

Question

What are three new policies that Helen Clark wants a mandate for? Forward the answers to Mike Williams urgently. What are three fresh policy ideas that Bill English is promoting? (Don't include "legislation to enable the Auckland motorways to be completed" - that was ACT MP Penny Webster's private bill.)

Maybe that's why both old parties' support is falling - no new policies.

Spot the Inconsistency

On 8 December 1998, Winston Peters voted against ACT's Treaty of Waitangi (Final Settlement of Claims) Bill. On 6 September 2000, Mr Peters voted against Richard Prebble's Truth in Sentencing Bill.

Not Mentioned in the Campaign

With the NZ dollar at 50c US, meat an wool farm incomes will drop by $400M and dairy incomes by $1.68B. If the dollar reaches 55c US, combined meat, wool and dairy incomes will fall by $3.18B. Using the standard multiplier effect on the economy of 4.5, this drop in export earnings will have a devastating outcome.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

KiwiBailed: KiwiBuild Head Officially Resigns

The head of Kiwibuild, Stephen Barclay has officially resigned from the role. In a statement issued on his behalf, it was announced that he would step down from today [Friday].

Housing Minister Phil Twyford's office said he would not be commenting on Mr Barclay's resignation as it was an employment matter. Last month, Mr Twyford confirmed that Mr Barclay had not been at work for a number of weeks. More>>

 

Welfare Stats: Rise In Hardship Numbers Shows Income Inadequacy

The latest Ministry of Social Development quarterly report show that a record number of people have received hardship assistance from work and income, with an additional 40,000 hardship payments made between September and December 2018, compared to the previous quarter of the same year... More>>

ALSO:

DHBs "Prepared": Junior Doctors Strike Again

The needs of acute patients will be met during tomorrow's junior doctor strike, a DHB spokesperson says... Almost 3000 junior doctors are expected to walk off the job, which will affect all DHBs apart from West Coast District Health Board. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On MBIE’s Social Media Scam

Given the ambit of MBIE’s work, almost any form of social activity could qualify as being part of MBIE’s brief, so the privacy threats posed by this training programme are extensive. The current oversight safeguards seem threadbare to non-existent. More>>

ALSO:

JusTrade: New Campaign For A 21th Century Trade Agenda

‘Critique is no longer enough. If anything is to really change, we need to step away from the existing framework and take a first-principles approach to rethinking what will work for the 21st century.’ More>>

Earlier:

Gordon Campbell: Thompson + Clark Are The Tip Of The Iceberg

How can we tell where and how any lines are being drawn? Oversight is not exactly robust. If it were, Thompson + Clark would have been out of contention for state security work ten years ago. More>>

Trainers: Taratahi Institute of Agriculture In Interim Liquidation

Taratahi employ 250 staff and this year has provided education to over 2500 students. Taratahi owns and manages 8 farms throughout the country. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA Report: Complaints About Deputy Commissioner Wallace Haumaha

The Authority has found that DC Haumaha acted improperly by approaching staff and others to provide information to support him to refute the allegations about his 2016 conduct, or solicited other staff to do so on his behalf... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels