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In Pursuit of Economic Nationalism

In Pursuit of Economic Nationalism – Putting New Zealand First

Rt Hon Winston Peters
New Zealand First Leader
10 August 2014

New Zealand First 2014 Campaign Launch
Kelston Community Hall, Awaroa Road, Kelston, Auckland
Sunday 10 August, 1.45pm


Thank you for being here this afternoon, and to all of you who are the engine room behind our campaign, you have our sincere thanks.

In this campaign we face a number of opponents.

Some with obscene amounts of money supported by power elites and large sections of the media.

They believe that influence and propaganda will get them elected.

However, there is something that they haven’t got - essential in politics.

They have not got people with passion, with principles and totally committed not to themselves, but to what they believe in.

They haven’t got you.

In this campaign every other party wants to be, or is aligned, with others.

If called to stand up for you, they have other loyalties.

The critical issues concerning you and your family are not their main concern.

There is only one party that stands for economic nationalism.

It’s in our name - New Zealand First.

Economic nationalism once guided New Zealand’s economy for almost half a century and took us to the top two or three countries in the world.

We used to be the economic tiger.

These principles of economic nationalism saw us become an industrialised nation with a broad economy and in this we were uncompromising.

Back then, if we could use our resources to employ our own people, house, feed and care for them, whatever their age, that’s what we did.

During this great period, the old Labour and National governments, on economic nationalism, were the same.

They shared a vision of a nation state seeking to control its own economic destiny.

Alas, they gave up the pursuit of economic self-destiny and the rest is history.

Outside forces, specifically global money and the international community, soon filled the vacuum and set out to dictate both the economic and political direction of New Zealand.

We were sucked into a vortex of foreign ideas, stopped our exports drive and talked of being a world financial capital.

We sacrificed our economic autonomy at the same time as we sacrificed our political autonomy.

And both go hand in hand.

We stopped being nationalists and the subtle influences that bought this about came from Australia.

Do you remember? We went from being in control of most of our banking industry to today almost total control by Australian-based banks.

But it didn’t stop there.

Today much of our mass media is controlled from Australia - Fairfax and APN.

Australian-based insurance companies, and an alarming share of our manufacturing industry, are also now under Australian control.

They vacuum profits from New Zealand totally disproportionate to their contribution to our economy as a whole.

Much of New Zealand’s wealth is no longer ours to share.

There should be no surprise how these influences regard a party called New Zealand First, because we represent the only road block to their further expansion in New Zealand.

In this campaign, much of the criticism that will come our way will not be the result of independent comment or analysis but from the fourth estate wanting to shape and direct the political affairs of the nation to suit their owners.

Anyone seeking to check their growing influence attracts their jaundiced criticism.

It’s so obvious really.

When someone puts their national interest first they are accused of being anti-foreigner, anti-progress and living in the dark ages.

This is not an attack on New Zealand journalists, starved of the resources needed to do their jobs properly.

But they should be aware of the mantra of their ownership.

“Challenge us and we will deal to you”.

Many New Zealanders understand what we’re saying here and it contributes to their sense of powerlessness, and their worry about the growing irrelevance of our democratic system.

Some think they can do nothing about it.

But you can - and that is what this election is all about.

Foreign Ownership

Opposing foreign ownership is a major theme in our campaign.

Those challenging us use four weak arguments to dismiss New Zealanders concern.

They say “it’s trivial”.

They say the amount of land being sold “is minimal”.

They say “but our predecessor did it too”.

They say they have “a process to vet each sale”.

Selling almost 14,000 hectares in one sale is not trivial, nor is letting one foreign owner have 26,000 hectares of farmland.

The truth is that over one million hectares of New Zealand land passing into foreign control since the Government came into power is not minimal.

That’s six times the size of Stewart Island.

Because your predecessor did it too does not make your actions sensible.

As for the Overseas Investment Office (OIO) process, it is a total façade – pretence of doing something whilst rubber-stamping all applications from abroad.

Their process reeks of secrecy, whilst approving a sale, on average over the past three years, every three days.

When hard core Tory Federated Farmers express their concern, you know something has seriously gone wrong.

New Zealand First is opposed to the takeover of New Zealand.
One of these days soon, New Zealand is going to wake up to the fact that marketing our prime product, dairying, is no longer in our control.

Our brand is being seriously contaminated because we are naively allowing others to control it.

Chinese mothers getting on a plane to another country to buy all the infant formula they can, because they don’t trust their own country’s product, should have been a lesson to us.

Look, the Government is deeply infiltrated and funded by foreign money interests – the Oravida scandal exposed the deep web of collaboration.
Recently, over 16,000 New Zealanders participated in a poll asking if New Zealand land should be sold to foreigners.

94 per cent said no.

Are those 94 per cent all xenophobic racists?

New Zealand First’s Response on Foreign Ownership

Now, this is what New Zealand First is going to do.

We’ll pass a law to register all land and house ownership.

We’re going to know, finally, who owns what and where.

And we’ll catch land and houses using the trust ownership veil as well.

We will impose rigorous control on land, house and state business sales.

The rubber-stamp is going in the bin.

We will use the Cullen fund and our KiwiFund, and tax law, to buy back what were once our assets, and finance our own infrastructure.


Immigration is another major theme in our campaign.

When 140,000 New Zealanders can’t find even one hour of work a week, and a further 100,000 can’t find nearly enough work to sustain themselves, wholesale immigration just doesn’t make any sense.

Record levels of net migration are causing enormous costs in housing, health care, education and overloaded infrastructure.

Who benefits from open door immigration?

Certainly not those hundreds of thousands of New Zealanders, old and new to this country, struggling for affordable housing and decent jobs and wages.

New Zealand First will drastically cut immigration to those we need, not those who need us.

We’re not anti-immigrant; we are anti-economic and social lunacy.

New Zealand Superannuation

We will campaign on protecting NZ Super and oppose its many enemies.

For us, it’s an equity and fairness issue.
Our record on this is unmatched:

• We got rid of the surtax.
• We got Super back to 66 per cent of the net average wage.
• We introduced the SuperGold Card with all of its benefits, and more to come – and today 630,000 hold this card.
• We’ll give power discounts in the winter months.
• And we’ll give three free doctors visits per year.

Despite the scare campaign, at 4.1 per cent NET of GDP, Super is affordable provided there are sensible changes.

We stand for Super at age 65, with no means testing.

But Super cannot be a “free for all” as it is now.

Already, 68,000 have accessed our Super by entering via parent reunion.

After 10 years, contributor or not, they became entitled to full New Zealand Super.

Remember, 68,000 already have done this. But, those who oppose New Zealand First on Super are so politically correct they simply haven’t got the courage or honesty to address the huge numbers accessing NZ Super from abroad.

No other country allows this.

We say only New Zealanders, and those qualified by length of stay, should get the full pension.

We say there’s something innately unfair with a loose policy, that 68,000 can gain access after only ten years, whilst 70,000 elderly migrants, including returning New Zealanders, have the pensions they earned overseas taken off them.

New Zealand First will give overseas pensions fair treatment.
The Government won’t raise a finger for them.

In contrast, New Zealand First is going to raise the roof at this gross unfairness.

The Campaign Environment

In this campaign, you’re going to hear amazing promises.

Some of our opponents have had more political costume changes than Lady Gaga.

Most will be pie-in-the-sky, assuming a certain magic, and much will be wishful thinking.

Or, as Dusty Springfield sang; Wishing, and hoping, and thinking, and praying.

In contrast, New Zealand First’s policies will be practical, affordable, and make common sense.

We’ll stop, in real terms, our interest rates being the highest in 50 years.

We’re going to address New Zealand’s lowest home ownership in 63 years.

We’re going to answer the call from half the workforce, who got no pay increase last year, or barely any increase over the past five years.

We’re going to stop the policy where half the immigrants granted permanent residency last year were not skilled.

So the contrast could not be more clear – in this campaign we will showcase New Zealand First policies, economic and social, that will work for all New Zealanders.

Let’s start by fixing the Reserve Bank Act so it helps serious export growth and the rebuild of our manufacturing base and the growth of new IT industries.

Innovative manufacturing is at the heart of a healthy, resilient economy.

New Zealand First is committed to achieving a target of over two per cent of GDP for research and development.

We will target tax incentives for investment in innovative technology, research and development.

We’re going to stop the nonsense that somehow the free market can fix your future.

We’re going to stop the 30 years of sliding down the OECD performance register.
Other countries have raced past us. They export much more, have far greater wealth and deliver much more to their citizens.

That used to be New Zealand once, and it will be again.

Dealing To Poverty

We’re going to start immediately dealing to the level of poverty in our country.

We’re going to take GST Off Your Food, and Your Rates.

We’ll ignore the Cabinet Ministers on $280,000 a year who say you don’t need it.

The speed with which some Cabinet Ministers have forgotten their past, and what sensitive governments have done for them and their families to give them a chance, is nothing short of breathtaking.

A sort of ‘I’m in the boat Jack, and I’m alright’.

Well, we in New Zealand First have never forgotten where we came from and that’s why we’re going to attack poverty.

We’ll announce soon our policy on the minimum wage. But remember this. The party in this country’s history that moved the minimum wage the quickest is New Zealand First.

Between 2005-08 we took the minimum wage from $9.00 per hour (where it had got to after 154 years) to $12.00 per hour in three years flat.

No party can match that.

Some politicians talk, some do!


We have always stood against creeping separatism undermining our economic and social future.

Unlike imitators, we have always understood the greatest victims of separatist policies would be Maori.

We believe in equality and we’ve never lost faith in the Maori people if given a real chance.

We’ve never forgotten the memory of the Maori Battalion.

They were prepared to make enormous sacrifices for what they believed in and they fought and died in great numbers for flag and country.

Their losses, like fellow soldiers, were enormous.

But they did it for a cause called citizenship.

Though they’d been here for centuries, they felt they had to earn the right to be equal in their own country.

It’s hard to conceive of how they were drawn to that conclusion, but they were, and we owe their sacrifice far better than separatist, sociological mumbo-jumbo.

Maori are not unique. They want affordable and safe housing, a decent accessible health system, educational excellence to prepare their children for the future, and they want first world wages coming with employment.

What they’ve had served up by this government and supporters is “A Parallel State” based on separatist social policies benefiting the few and leaving the mass majority of Maori untouched.

There are many pretenders in this campaign but none of them has ever had the honesty and courage to understand the problem and call it what it is.

Some months ago, we broke the story on the Te Roopu Taurima O Manukau Trust Board and the scandal of it receiving over $30 million a year of taxpayer money to deliver mental health services for Maori.

The usual suspects, including the Government, the Ministry of Health and Minister Ryall ran for cover.

It’s now under Serious Fraud Office investigation.

But such is their contempt for accountability that the CEO has resigned from the Trust as of three days ago, but with a secret, confidential settlement in which he wanted quarter of a million in severance, plus his car.

Honest workers for the Trust were fired, but he’s getting a confidential settlement, despite the massive damage that has been done.

Ask yourself, how does that help Maori?

Personal Security

New Zealand First has always been strong on personal security. That is, law and order.

We have policies to tackle binge drinking and drug affected, anti-social behaviour in a public place.

Recently the Government proposed a crack down on gangs. They’re going to have extra dog sniffer surveillance at the airports.

Whoever told them that this was a solution knows nothing about the gangs or their culture.

We already know who the gangs are, and we know where they are.

Pussy-footing around the edges doesn’t deal with the essential problem of gangs which is that they exist at all.

New Zealand First will ban criminal gangs altogether.

Four states in Australia have already done this.

So will we.

But to have law and order in this country we’re going to get more front line police, like the 1000 extra we found between 2005-2008.

And we’re going to bolster the services of the Maori Wardens.

Our policy is to set up a public paedophile register and ensure that sex offenders, not responding to rehabilitation, are not returned to our streets.

As well, we’re going to ask our Courts to give judgements that make common sense.

The Stephen Dudley decision is a case in point.

How can a boy, brutally beaten to death, have his attackers walk free, despite an admission of guilt, with no conviction of violence entered against them?

Not convicting them of manslaughter is one thing. Discharging them without conviction is something else. That should never have happened.

True, Stephen Dudley had an undiagnosed heart condition, but that condition didn’t lead to his death. Being punched in the neck and continuously beaten while on the ground did.

Good Environmentalism is Sound Economics – a Founding Principle

We take climate change seriously – and our offshore markets do.

Everything we said about the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) has been confirmed. The ETS is a massive rort on the taxpayer and must go.

New Zealand First’s policy is to establish a formal planning process, develop strategies, plans, research programmes and targets to achieve fossil carbon reduction relevant to New Zealand. (The UK already does this under the 2008 UK Climate Change Act. So does Scandinavia).

Disabled New Zealanders

In New Zealand today there are about 100,000 seriously disabled New Zealanders.

In many ways, they have been forgotten by the political system.

We’re going to respond to them.

We’re going to work with the advocates for the disabled, and provide as much relief as we can afford, to improve their daily lives and income.

This includes accommodation as well.

So we’re going to build for them 1000 homes, spread around New Zealand, to provide them with the housing that they desperately need.

Policies for the young

We all know that saving for our retirement and our first home has been helped by the KiwiSaver scheme.

Thousands of young New Zealanders have used KiwiSaver to help them save to buy their first homes.

But what if we could extend the scheme.

New Zealand First wants to register all newborn babies in New Zealand with a KiwiSaver account. The Government will kick in with the first $1,000.

This means that over their childhood and teenage years, their savings will grow from the odd jobs they do, the Christmas and birthday ‘$20 gifts’ from their grandparents’, the afterschool and holiday jobs they have as a teenager.

New Zealand First will extend KiwiSaver so that the savings in an account can be used for Tertiary Education fees.

The flow on effects are teaching a child good savings habits from early on.

Parents and family can contribute knowing that it will go towards tertiary education or a home – a basic need. It’ll change parental savings culture as well.

It also means that the Government is spared not having to loan as much money to Tertiary Education students for their fees.

Some will say this won’t have an affect for many years.

They’re wrong of course, because we are setting out to change New Zealand to a savings culture.

It will cost the government per year about what the Novopay disaster has cost us already - $60 million.

Or much less than the numerous Cook Strait ferry botchups have cost already.

That’s $60 million reinvested back into our economy, our businesses and our people, not heading offshore to reward a bunch of incompetent Aussies on Novopay.

Mothers and fathers can ‘fly buy’ some of their consumer spending towards their children’s account.

By these means can we directly help so many of our young whilst at the same time further build the funds to free ourselves from the dependence on foreign money and foreign savings.

Over the next six weeks we’ll announce other policies for the young.


In this campaign, New Zealand First has three great advantages:

1. We have a comprehensive platform of practical policies that will make New Zealand a better place to live, work and raise a family.
2. We have the commitment, enthusiasm, the energy and above all the loyalty of our Party members and now hundreds of thousands of supporters throughout New Zealand. They may not appear in the polls, but they are just waiting to give expression to what they think. If you’re listening closely to the groundswell of voters, you’ll know there is a surge on for New Zealand First, and our opponents know it.
3. We have a first class, talented team of candidates. Many of them are going to make it into parliament.

To be great again, New Zealand needs to look after the baby just born, the worker and the business wanting a fair deal, and those older who want to retire with dignity and grace.

To do that we are going to rebuild our economy and environment so that it serves these people, our people, not foreign banks, not foreign interests, and not those who are their handmaidens.

You will read and hear many promises in this election, but New Zealand First’s policies go to the very heart of our country’s recovery.

In this election, you now have the chance to rebuild the New Zealand you want.

Only New Zealand First can fix this.

And you can help by giving your party vote to New Zealand First.

You know “It’s Common Sense”.


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