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The New Write 17/2/2002

THE NEW WRITE

17th February 2002

”The activist is not the man who says the river is dirty. The activist is the man who cleans up the river.”
-Ross Perot

1. A WORD FROM THE CHAIR
2. YOUNG NATIONALS CONFERENCE IN MARCH
3. LABOUR LOCALS THROW HISSY FIT
4. POT HEAD GETS OFF
5. HOT GOSS FROM PARLIAMENT
6. YOUTH STRATEGY IS ‘DRIVEL’
7. TOP TEN POSITIVE OUTCOMES FROM WAITANGI
8. WEBSITE OF THE WEEK

1. A WORD FROM THE CHAIR – GRANT TYRRELL

I was fortunate enough to attend two day caucus recently held in Auckland. It was a privilege to sit in on policy discussions and to feed off the positive mood of the caucus. I can also tell you that many of the MPs were interested in our views on Tertiary Education in particular. I spent a good deal of the weekend reinforcing why it is such a terrible inequity to have student allowances made available based on parental income.

From the feedback I got the easy bit was convincing them - the hard bit was finding a solution! This is especially so after two and a bit years of Labour - it is unfortunate that fiscal realities and Cullen's pipe dreams do not match!

I can tell you that everyone of our caucus team will be working their collective prosteriors off to return National to the Treasury benches in 2002. It is also up to all of us, as activists, to help the team take the message to the electorate. National's early policy announcements have generated a great deal of positive feedback, people want an alternative to Helengrad - we are the only Party that can provide this change, and with your help we will!

Finally Conference 2002 is nearly upon us! We have a pretty full line up taking shape as we start the conference round off and count down to VICTORY 2002!


2. YOUNG NATIONALS CONFERENCE IN MARCH

The 2002 New Zealand Young Nationals Conference has been confirmed for March this year. The conference is the highlight of the Young Nationals year and everyone should attend.

Some famous and high profile guest speakers have been confirmed these will be announced shortly.

These conferences are famous for their robust debate, fascinating speakers, and vigorous social activities. It is a great chance to meet other Young Nationals from around the country.

When: Thursday 21 March - Saturday 23 March
Where: Opposition Caucus Room, Parliament
Cost: To be announced - cheap

Visit www.youngnationals.org.nz to register.

3. LABOUR LOCALS THROW HISSY FIT

Labour locals in Napier and Mana are complaining after controversy over candidate selection.

The Napier electorate chose lawyer Russell Faribrother as its candidate. However local members are furious at what they claim is domination from affiliated unions, who turned up in great numbers to vote. They are also angry that Fairbrother gained special exemption to stand, because he hasnt been a party member for the required year.

The Napier branch has written to the Labour Party head office "expressing our disgust that a person with the least years' experience in the party was granted a waiver and given a safe Labour seat", according to the Dominion.

"Really what shocked people, I think, was that unions and members who don't really belong to the party were able to be bussed in, walk in, block vote and walk out again," unsuccessful candidate Pat Kane said.

Fairbrother, a criminal lawyer, achieved notoriety last year when defending Dartelle Alder who brutally ran down, raped and murdered Wellington woman Margaret Baxter. Fairbrother said the crime was the result of the "white ruling class" and their oppression of Maori.

Meanwhile, a similar dispute is brewing in Mana. Helen Clark and the head office want MP Winnie Laban to stand, while the locals prefer Kevin Watson. Several complaints have been made by local members.

4. POT HEAD GETS OFF

Chris Fowlie, President of cannabis lobby group NORML, has escaped conviction for possession of cannabis in a landmark ruling.

Judge Phil Gittos ruled that the search was unreasonable because the police had no reason to believe Mr Fowlie was doing anything illegal. The decision means that police cannot search people simply because they look suspicious.

Don Mathias, an expert in criminal defence law, said the ruling was significant. "It shows how the police are acting unreasonably when they require people to account for their presence in a public place in circumstances where there is no indication that they are doing anything unlawful."


5. HOT GOSS FROM PARLIAMENT

*Marion Hobbs threw a hissy fit at National MP Katherine Rich last week, after a hard hitting press release from Rich. Hobbs rung her on her cellphone and had a bizarre rant, accusing her of being "preoccupied with being a mother", before hanging up abruptly.

*Helen Clark chickened out of a Holmes debate this week. She refused to debate Bill English on live TV.

*Clarks opening speech in Parliament this week was so boring that many MPs fell asleep. The ACT party seemed to especially enjoy it - their MPs Donna Awatere Huata and Stephen Franks slept soundly, while former ACTivists President Clint Heine fell asleep in the public gallery.


6. YOUTH STRATEGY IS ‘DRIVEL’

Unimaginative, politically correct rhetoric was how New Zealand Young Nationals Chair Grant Tyrrell described the government's Youth Strategy.

"The 'Youth Development Strategy Aotearoa' is verbosity personified. It tells us little more than any ordinary New Zealander already knows: the youth demographic is made up of individuals with unique needs," Grant Tyrrell stated.

"The government defines 'youth' as one homogeneous block between 12 and 24 years of age inclusive. At 12 most children are beginning to adjust to the upcoming challenges of secondary education. As of this month a 24 year old could well be grappling with the invasive Compulsory Marriage Age. It is completely ridiculous to lump these together - to attempt to make sweeping conclusions as to how this demographic can best be supported is an unbelievable assumption.

"The language and assumptions in this document are nothing short of patronising. It is meant to be a document for youth but it is full of bureaucratic cliché and empty statements. For example the government seems to think that it can summarise 'youth' and their surrounding influences in a venn diagram entitled "The social environments/settings/connections shaped by the wider contexts."

"In this case read 'strategy' as code 'for out of ideas' . Do the rain forests a favour and halt the print run on this abysmal excuse for a youth strategy."


7. TOP TEN POSITIVE OUTCOMES FROM WAITANGI DAY

1. David Benson-Pope stayed away from Waitangi to avoid stealing the Prime Minister's thunder.

2. Tame Iti somehow managed to get to Waitangi without a taxpayer-funded upgrade of his road courtesy of his mate Sandra Lee.

3. There wasn't another debate about why having to wear lifejackets in a waka is culturally demeaning but being rescued by the coast guard or a helicopter is not.

4. Pakeha protestors proved that it really is possible to have worse hair than Sue Bradford's.

5. For the first time in two years the Navy managed to get closer
than the Army to Helen Clark.

6. Being a public holiday, Margaret Wilson had to temporarily suspend
her campaign to singlehandedly destroy New Zealand's productive sector.

7. A grateful nation was spared the sight of Dr Peter Davis in shorts.

8. The protest signs highlighted the need for a campaign to fight illiteracy amongst professional protesters.

9. The government didn't announce a new 148-part TV series, "Parekura
Horomia explains the Treaty".

10. Not a single speaker suggested giving more taxpayer money to
Tuku Morgan.

St Molesworth
www.geocities.com/stmolesworth


8. WEBSITE OF THE WEEK

www.satirewire.com

Very funny satire of world news and computer issues. Thanks to Chris Hipkins for this site.


Any views expressed here are not necessarily those of New Zealand Young Nationals, or the New Zealand National Party.

Contributions, feedback, articles and subscriptions welcome. Email
newwrite@national.org.nz

Editor: Phil Rennie

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