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robson-on-politics 3 March 2005

robson-on-politics 3 March 2005

robson-on-politics, a newsletter from Matt Robson MP Deputy Leader of the Progressive Party

Power to the people

I'm in Palmerston North today for Progressive at a Grey Power-organized panel discussing energy policy. ACT and NZ First aren't showing, but I'll remind the audience that ACT and NZ First made it possible for the last minority National-led government to destroy our former integrated state energy system. By hocking off Contact Energy and by failing to invest enough in either energy production or energy efficiency, they left a mess. Since Progressive has been inside government, we've pushed hard to ensure New Zealand is investing properly in its future energy needs. We know how hard it is for pensioners on fixed incomes. They are vulnerable to price rises when the National's so-called 'energy market' fails to deliver reliable, steady, secure supply. See: Reversing the negative legacy

Salvation Army is dead right on housing

The Sallies' report is dead right. From Housing to Homes released Wednesday urges action so Kiwi families can own their own homes. Yes, the state needs to do better in assisting low-income families get into their first home. That is why Progressive is asking for your second, Party Vote later this year. We need it to ensure the next Labour-led coalition implements our ambitious election 2005 strategy to get families into their first homes. Our billboard tells the story:

See: Progressive housing initiative

Party vote Progressive to fight cannabis

There was a fascinating exchange yesterday in Parliament at Question Time on cannabis. The to-and-fro was a timely reminder that it is Progressive that keeps the Labour-Progressive government staunch in the campaign against drugs. That's why it is so vital Progressive is inside the next Labour-led government to keep the pressure on those peddlers of dangerous drugs. See: Question Time transcript

Jim chairs Nelson public forum on P tonight

To readers in Nelson, Jim Anderton is chairing a public forum your way tonight on P, alcohol and other drugs. 7.30 p.m, Tahuna Beach Function Centre in Beach Rd. See: Forum details

The Fourth Estate and democracy

Thanks to those who emailed me on the role of the media in defining the terms of social and political debate. An old-timer swears the newspaper "news" is more sensationalist nowadays than when he was a lad and there was competition: more than just one paper in town. Most of you think TVNZ should be freed from having to chase advertising dollars and that an ad-free TV One News would be a lot more balanced and serious. And a number of you simply recommend as the most democratic and interesting news source.

Rt Hon. Jonathan Lucas Hunt, Order of NZ

A former Post Office Minister retired as Speaker last night. In his Xmas newsletter he had discussed the virtues of "the Labour government" (sic.) >From today, we'll have a new Speaker who knows that the last time we had a Labour government was actually in 1990 (remember 1984-1990?) That Labour government that sold PostBank to ANZ, sold BNZ to National Australia Bank, sold Air NZ to some brilliant dividend-seeking investors and sold many more things besides, like Telecom and the forests.

Our new Speaker knows that these days we have a Labour-Progressive government that invests in Air NZ and establishes Kiwibank, invests in the rail network and invests in security of energy supply - the antithesis of the last Labour government.

No to dams, coal opens door to nuclear option

Speaking of security of power supply, I'm reminded that the virtuous Greens have to be careful, as all their wishes might come true. Greenies oppose damming rivers and using coal to meet our needs. Latest news is that our common adversaries are now advocating nuclear energy. See: Nuclear option reads its head,2106,3200890a6445,00.html

(Sunday Star Times)

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