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The New Write - 4th June 2002

The New Write

Official Newsletter of the New Zealand Young Nationals

4th June 2002

A little rebellion now and again is a good thing.”
-Thomas Jefferson



I’ve found that boxing training is fine until someone else starts hitting you. I’m caught up in the ‘Fight for Life’, a fundraising event for the Prevention of Youth Suicide. It ran last year, with boxing matches between rugby and league players and it’s much the same this year. The main fights include Tawera Nikau, Peter Fatialofa, Inga Tuigamala and Mark Bourneville, all ex-New Zealand rugby players.

I still don’t know who my opponent is, and probably won’t until the night. What I do know is he is my age and size, has fought two amateur bouts and is tough and mad. I’m a bit worried about the ‘mad’ bit.

Training is pretty hard. There’s lots of short fast conditioning work to make sure we’re used to feeling exhausted. A lot of boxing is in the shoulders and the hardest part is banging the bag ‘till I can’t hold my arms up. In the last few weeks we have started sparring, where the other guy tries to knock your head off. I thought sparring was a bit less than fighting, but it isn’t. The coach keeps talking about composure - which means staying relaxed while you’re getting hit! I’m getting plenty of practice at it.

For an old rugby player, the real challenge is speed and co-ordination. Everything has to be done fast, and you have to move your feet and your arms in different directions at the same time. There’s nothing like a smack on the nose to speed up your reactions.

Three or four two-minute rounds with thirty seconds in between are absolutely exhausting for a beginner. The coach says he's after progress not perfection. The main progress in the training is more pain, so I hope pain is the path to perfection.

-Bill English


21-year-old Richard Townley, a Young National and part-time history student has been picked to contest the Hutt South seat for National at this year’s election.

Mr Townley is the third Young National to be selcted as a National candidate, and the youngest, along with Dan Gordon (Waimakariri) and Paul Foster (Dunedin South).


It was the best & worst of New Zealand last Saturday night. The best - the Crusaders' thrilling victory over the Australian Brumbies in the Super 12 rugby final. A more seamless, relentless, clever & at times dazzling performance we haven't seen in a while, including from our national team, the All Blacks. Fifteen brilliant players formed an invincible chain, with not a single weak link.

All the more incongruous, then, that the beer commercials played on television before & after the game & at half time referred to the Crusaders as "a champion TEAM, not a team of CHAMPIONS." Only in New Zealand (well, maybe not!) could a feat of individualism be poisoned by this sort of collectivist spin.

The sponsors - a private, voluntary brewery who should know better - went out of their way to blur the strengths & identities of the individual players & harangue us that the team is the thing. THIS - of a team consisting of Andrew Mehrtens, Reuben Thorne, Richie McCaw & all the rest of these godlike heroes?! What a vile insult!

The Crusaders are a champion team BECAUSE they are a team of champions. Yes, of course team work is important in a team sport. Yes, each must fulfill his role to the hilt. The better each player, the stronger the team as a whole. But why on earth should that simple fact be used as an excuse to play down individual merit? For all that they have their allocated functions, players are NOT simply mindless cogs in a machine, & must be ready & able not just to play their part but to seize an unpredictable moment & go it alone on occasion.

Now you might say, "It was only a game, only a beer commercial - get a life!" Problem is, in the game of life, this emphasis on the "team" becomes an enforced subordination of the individual to "society." Right on cue, to add injury to insult, who should pop up on tonight's TV news to pontificate about the Crusaders' win but the Prime Minister? What on earth did she have to do with it?

The only contribution politicians make to talent is to put coercive obstacles in its way - in the name of the greater good of society. All this "not a team of champions" stuff only encourages them.

Sign up for Lindsay Perigo’s daily column at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/perigo


Got friends or family living overseas who are interested in the future of New Zealand? We've got a webpage that's totally dedicated to them! It's called National Abroad, and along with our new e-zine, The InterNat, it's keeping kiwis abroad up-to-date with the issues that are important to them. To visit National Abroad, click here.


*The Rock FM is running an online charity auction for memorabilia from Thursday night’s “Fight for Life” boxing event. Bill English’s sweaty singlet is up for grabs, and has attracted a highest bid of $35.

So how does this compare to others? Inga Tuigamala’s singlet has attracted $40, Peter Fatialofa’s $35, and the “Holden Girlie Tee” has reached $69.

*Nandor Tanczos, supposed “youth role-model” for the Green Party, celebrated his birthday last week. Believe it or not, he is actually 37 years old.

*A New Zealand First MP was unimpressed with the soup selection at Bellamys last Wednesday night. “Chinese soup?” he complained. “Yuck! It’ll probably be cat!”

A Labour MP behind him laughed, then pretended to look offended when he turned around.

*Labour MP Clayton Cosgrove is the talk of Parliament with his “miraculous” hair gain. The follically-challenged MP has apparently been using ‘hair plugs’, whatever they are.

*A certain Christchurch MP (not National) has been in a bit of trouble over an unpaid coffee bill. Apparently this MP ran up a $500 bill a few years ago then refused to pay after a dispute with the café owner. Even after a disputes tribunal decision the MP still refused to pay, and the poor café owner gave up trying to get her money back. Dodgy.

*Alliance MP Liz Gordon has sent out a unique invite to a celebration at her office; guests must bring a “doodle”, but with a fake signature. There is a prize for the most imaginative entry.

*Calendars of National Party Leader Bill English are selling like hotcakes – even a senior Government Minister’s press secretary rung the National office to order a copy of Bill’s calendar. Many electorate offices around the country have sold out all their copies already.

*Labour MP Joe Hawke was refused entry on a plane at Wellington airport last week for “unruly” behaviour, including abusing staff. Police were called, and witnesses at Parliament suggest he was still in a “tired and emotional state” around 9:30pm that night.

*The latest apology from Helen Clark is to the gay community. Helen Clark has apologised for the Government’s treatment of homosexuals over the years in the Express magazine, but has kept this apology a lot lower profile than the one to the Samoan community.


1. Co-leader address from Jeanette Fitzsimons titled "Wrecking coalition relationships BEFORE joining a coalition".

2. Full plenary session to address the question "What is it that Ian Ewen-Street does again?"

3. Discussion of whether it's a violation of basic human rights for
Winston Peters to call Nandor Tanczos "a Hungarian-South African-
British-Johnny-Come-Lately member of a pro-cannabis Jamaican cult".

4. Introduce the members to Ian Ewen-Street and hope they remember
him this year.

5. Keynote address from Sue Kedgeley's hairdresser titled "How I
turned a fashion tragedy into a political sex kitten.”

6. Keith Locke to explain to members why he thought Russia invading
Afghanistan was a good idea but America liberating it was a bad idea.

7. Watch seven MPs on over $80,000 a year (plus perks) bitch about
the evils of capitalism.

8. Remember to exclude the media from the embarrassing morris dancing
session this year.

9. Avoid any televised discussions on topics like the rights of cats
that make the party look like a bunch of dope-crazed hippies.

10. Just look at your hands, man. I mean, have you ever just LOOKED at your hands, I mean, dude, like REALLY looked ... wow ... far out.

Courtesy of St Molesworth:


http:// http://www.policy.net.nz

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