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Putting Politicians On Notice About Privatisation

Chief Reporter

Postcards Put All Politicians On Notice About Privatisation

We didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when told that Bill English had claimed that our unassuming little anti-privatisation postcards are part of a “covert campaign” by Labour and the Greens and apparently on a par with the infamous Exclusive Brethren campaign in the 2005 election.

Sorry to spoil a good story, Bill, but there’s no covert campaign, no conspiracy and no secret. CAFCA produced the cards, offering them to our members and supporters. They are not leaflets or any other kind of “electioneering” material. They constitute a letter sent by an individual whose name and address appears on the card – that person is the sender, with nothing remotely “covert” about it.

They are not aimed against any particular political party, and they’re certainly not from any political party. CAFCA is not a party and is not affiliated to any – we reserve the right to criticise all of them, and do so.

The cards are to be sent to MPs and candidates from any party simply stating that the named sender will not vote for a candidate or party which advocates full or partial privatisation of public assets. They can be as equally sent to Labour MPs and candidates supporting Private Public Partnerships for Auckland’s mega roading project as they can to National MPs and candidates supporting “opening ACC to competition”. And on that latter point, which has obviously led to National’s suspicions of a conspiracy, the timing is purely coincidental – our cards have been in circulation for weeks.

Obviously National is feeling guilty, having been outed about their plans for ACC and so they should be – the last time they “opened it up to competition” it was a shambles (as a self-employed worker, I remember it well). The insurance transnationals are rubbing their hands with glee at the rich pickings to be gained and, for the left overs that the big boys can’t be bothered with, every crook and his dog will be touting snake oil. Been there, done that, why fix it if it ain’t busted? Oh, I forgot, there are mega profits to be made by “fixing” it.

Obviously Bill English cannot conceive of such an initiative coming from outside the tiny self-obsessed world of what the media refer to as “the Beltway” (where is that exactly in the Wellington context? Lambton Quay?). These cards represent ordinary, grassroots Kiwis saying to politicians of all parties:” We will not vote for any going back to the failed policy of privatisation which has caused such enormous damage to the economy and community over the past couple of decades. Hands off our assets”.


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