Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

ACT’s Free Press Nov 13

Free Press

ACT’s regular bulletin

Totally Crooked
The revelation that Winston Peters filed court proceedings against Bill English and Paula Bennett at 4:59pm on the eve of the election makes a farce of his coalition negotiations with National. The decision was made as soon as the special votes gave Lab-Gre-NZF a comfortable three vote margin. Free Press (almost) feels sorry for all those who voted for and even made large donations (when will they be declared?) to New Zealand First but ended up with the former President of the International Union of Socialist Youth for a Prime Minister backed by a clean sweep of seven Maori seats.

119-1
For the first time, but very unlikely the last, in this term of Parliament, ACT voted against the whole House. When National abandoned the taxpayer and voted with the Green Party, Labour, and New Zealand First, ACT stood alone against New Zealand’s already excessive entitlement culture being further expanded.

What was the Bill?
National voted to expand (taxpayer) Paid Parental Leave to 26 weeks. Labour lied in the process saying the OECD average is 38 weeks (actually 17.7), but most countries have terrible policy we’d be looking over the shoulder of the dumbest guy in class anyway. Continually expanding entitlements has been the road to ruin since at least Roman times, here we are again.

Free Lunches All ‘Round
Paid Parental Leave is just part of Labour’s ‘Great Loosening.’ By abolishing Three Strikes, Andrew Little has told 2,500 of the country’s most violent criminals who have strike offences ‘have one on me.’ Even people who never supported Three Strikes think that’s nuts. Then there’s the first year free for students, but this weekend saw a new loosening from Carmel Sepuloni.

Latest Loosening
Ms Sepuloni now says that the Government won’t dock the welfare payments of beneficiaries who refuse to name the child’s other parent. This opens the taxpayer up to two kinds of behavior and we don’t know which one is worse: Deadbeat Dads get off Scott-free (who else is going to name them?). Meanwhile fraudsters get to claim maximum benefits while receiving under-the-table child support.

Lurching Left
This Government is so hard left that we are starting to miss the Clark/Key era. Lindsay Mitchell helpfully points out this 2004 exchange between ACT’s Heather Roy and then Labour welfare Minister Steve Maharey: Roy: “When will he admit that this is just a rort so that fathers can dodge child support, and why should taxpayers always have to pick up the bill?” Maharey: “It is a rort, and I have said time and time again in this Parliament that fathers must front up to their obligations, and we will make sure they do, as much as we can.” Today’s Labour caucus would expel Maharey for saying such things.

No Substance
It is not unkind to say Jacinda Ardern did nothing in her first nine years in parliament but it is inaccurate. While she never passed a valuable Private Members Bill, uncovered a major scandal or appeared to do much of anything in nine years, she worked hard on herself and her image.

Off to the Spin Doctor
Free Press has been approached by people astonished to see her reading papers at the airport that weren’t about the country’s future but hers. They appeared to be studies of herself through the eyes of the media. We’d be a lot better off right now if she’d read a bit about international relations.

Secure the Borders
You can’t win power in Australian politics without securing the borders. No Australian politician can give in to Ardern’s posturing on refugees without paying a heavy political price at home. Australian politicians know that giving into Ardern’s offer to take Australian refugees will do two things: One, encourage more to come in the hope they’ll be let into New Zealand and, Two, give the Manus Island detainees entry to Australia with New Zealand passports. They won’t back down because they can’t.

Not Actually Humane
If Ardern wants to help refugees she should adopt ACT’s Canada-inspired policy of allowing community groups to sponsor extra refugees above and beyond the taxpayer funded quota –if they pick up the bill. The Canadians find that private refugee programs perform better than Government ones (Free Press readers won’t be surprised). Her current alternative is just encouraging people to take dangerous boat journeys (and needlessly irritating our most important ally).

Me Too
The National Party has leapt to the defence of Partnership Schools. The help is welcome as the Schools are the best thing that the previous Government did. In fact, they form the only policy that an incoming ‘left wing’ Government can’t easily stomach. If David Seymour ever feels important enough to write political memoirs we’ll all know how extraordinary this turn of events is.

Read online

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Let It Go: MP Pay To Be Frozen

The Government is freezing MP salaries and allowances for a year while developing a fairer formula for future pay increases.

The Remuneration Authority is due to make a decision on MP pay shortly.

“Today Cabinet agreed to freeze MP Pay till July 2019, and to reassess the funding formula used by the Authority to ensure it is fair and in keeping with this Government’s expectations and values,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. More>>

 

Cop Shop Top-Up: 1800 New Police Through NZ

Police Commissioner Mike Bush has today confirmed further details around the allocation of the 1800 additional officers, following a $298.8 million increase for Police in Budget 2018... “These 1800 officers, alongside 485 support staff, will really enhance our work to keep people safe, and ensure they feel safe,” says Mr Bush. More>>

ALSO:

Human Right Commissions: Concern On Aged Care And Consent

A new report published by the Human Rights Commission raises concerns about the legal and human rights safeguards for an estimated 5000 elderly New Zealanders in secure dementia units and psychogeriatric facilities. More>>

ALSO:

Justice Reform: Andrew Little Interviewed By Corin Dann

“We’ve had thirty years of the auction of more penalties, more crime, more people in prison but it‘s not working, it’s not making us safe.” More>>

ALSO:

Greens AGM: Leadership Stands Firm On Waka Jumping Bill

The Green Party leadership have dug in their heels and will not be reversing any of the decisions they have made in government. Former MPs Jeanette Fitzsimons and Sue Bradford had hoped the caucus might be persuaded this weekend to pull its support from the waka jumping bill. More>>

ALSO:

TOP Still Going, Actually: New Leader For Opportunities Party

New leader Geoff Simmons' aim as the leader of TOP is to take the party into Parliament at the next election where it can advocate and implement progressive reform in areas including fair taxation, cannabis legalisation, affordable housing, and environmental protection. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Another Reason To Loathe HR Departments (And On The Teachers Strike)

This morning’s news item about Police emergency call centre staff turning up for work while they’re sick – because they’re afraid their sick leave statistics will be used against them, and their jobs put in jeopardy – is not an isolated case... More>>

MPs' Computers To Be Searched: Inquiry Into Leak On Simon Bridges' Expenses

An inquiry has been launched to find out who leaked the National Party's expenses to the media... Parliament's speaker, Trevor Mallard, said a Queen's Counsel would lead the inquiry with the help of an employment lawyer and also someone with forensic IT skills. More>>

ALSO:

Teachers Strike: Nationwide Rallies And Marches

Teachers and principals voted for a full day strike to be held on 15 August to send a strong message to the Government that the current collective agreement offers from the Ministry of Education would not fix the crisis in teaching. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages