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A Case Study in Government Waste from ACT’s regular bulletin

A Case Study in Government Waste from Free Press - ACT’s regular bulletin

How the Government Wastes Your Money

We were amazed to learn of a Government report on New Zealanders’ attitudes to sport. No private household or business would have paid for this truly asinine report, but the Government made sure every single one of you did. Since you paid for it (the Government hasn’t said how much), Free Press wants you to know what you got.

The Findings

“90 per cent of the people believe being active keeps them physically fit and healthy. 88 per cent believe that sport and other physical activities provide them with opportunities to achieve and help build confidence. 84 per cent believe sport and physical activity bring people together and create a sense of belonging. 74 per cent say sport and physical activity help build vibrant and stimulating communities.” We are not making this up, you can read all the findings here.

Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dumber

Reports like this can’t just be put together in the first few months of a new Government, especially with the Christmas break and all. It was commissioned not by Labour but the previous National Party Minister of Sport. This report is not only an example of Labour’s spendthrift assault on your wallet, it is proof that National are no better.

What’s Really Going On

We estimate the report cost about $400,000. It provides New Zealanders with nothing they couldn’t have guessed. The most interesting finding is that apparently 10 per cent don’t think being active keeps you fit and healthy. It doesn’t help the Minister of Sport, what would he have done if the study had said New Zealand’s don’t like sport after all?

PR Job

The study was never going to say sport is bad. Its real purpose is to soften up the Minister of Finance to give more money to Sport New Zealand, who commissioned it. This is how Government wastes money on helping itself to more of your money. It is just one more little example of why New Zealand needs an ACT Party.

An Outrage (not exaggerating)

The Independent Police Complaint Authority’s finding that the police broke the law when they set up a fake checkpoint to monitor people who went to a meeting is the most important news of last week. We take it for granted that the police will follow the law, we’ve got so used to it that we don’t often think of it. When you boil it down, the difference between Stalin’s Russia and us is that here the humblest citizen can expect the law to come to their aid if they’re mistreated by the state and its agents.

A Much Larger Outrage (still not exaggerating)

Everyone makes mistakes, but it’s what you do about it that counts. The Police Commissioner’s response that the police had good intentions when they broke the law so it’s ok. There will be no consequences within the police. ACT has called for the commissioner to step down. The most basic civil liberties should be jealously guarded.

A Moral Problem

New Zealand’s response to the Russian poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia has been pathetic. We have been referred to in the Five Eyes alliance as the blink in ‘four eyes and a blink.’ Only last weekend our foreign Minister was defending Russia. It makes one wonder, why is Winston Peters so enamored with the Russians? We’ve heard lots, but it is not quite printable yet. Any tips happily received.

Another Moral Problem

Western Australia is openly discussing a possible influx of South African refugees since the country undertook to wipe basic property rights from its constitution. No Government who takes the values of our society seriously could stay silent while another parliament votes to steal some citizen’s property, but ours actually blocked ACT’s motion to debate the situation in Parliament.

The Difference Between Parliament and Government

Inside the political beltway, tongues are flapping about the Greens giving their questions at Question Time to National. They say it is a clever and innovative approach to democracy. They are in Government, they figure, so why would they need to ask questions of the Government? Except half the Green MPs are not Ministers, and not part of the Government. Backbenchers like them are supposed to hold the Government accountable.

It’s All Caucus Politics

The Greens’ leader James Shaw has just stripped his own Backbenchers of the right to ask parliamentary questions in the name of innovation. But is Shaw the earnest Edgar he likes to pretend? Well, he overtook seasoned MPs to become leader in his first Parliamentary term. Now, when Marama Davidson becomes co-leader in a few weeks’ time, she along with fellow ‘protestors’ Chloe Swarbrick and Golriz Gharaman on the back benches will have one fewer platform to make trouble from.

What Shaw Should Have Been Doing

The Census decides more about who gets what than any election. Schools and Hospitals can’t get funded for people the census says doesn’t exist. We will never know how many people missed being counted in the online census because paper forms were only available to those who asked for them. There are widespread stories about people who couldn’t or wouldn’t do it online and didn’t get a paper form.

Shaw Offshore

The Census should have been issued on paper and advertised the online option for those who wanted it. Then we could compare online results with paper results. We’d have a baseline for next time if we chose to go all-online then. Unfortunately Statistics Minister James Shaw was overseas on census night, and probably didn’t pay much attention beforehand either.

Missing in Action

On all of these issues except for cosying up to the Greens, Simon Bridges has been missing in action. He is too busy courting the Greens and the Maori seats. And people wonder why we need an ACT Party in New Zealand.


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