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robson-on-politics - 2nd birthday edition -

robson-on-politics, a weekly newsletter from Matt Robson MP Deputy Leader of the Progressive Party

Progressive: positive about people and jobs

Fri 24 September

Celebrating two years, and celebrating 20 years

Two years ago today on Tuesday 24 Sept 2002, robson-on-politics was launched. What a time it has been producing political news (almost) every week. Back then as the Progressive Coalition we had just emerged from a civil war, we had re-elected two MPs in an early election, and we worked on establishing credibility. Things soon settled down to Friday publication. By writing the fax edition as one page, I keep my words crisp and I resist any temptation to shrink margins or to reduce the font from 10 pt. For the email I add the links.

I understand robson-on-politics is more widely read by some Opposition staff than one of their own newsletters which is up to 2,000 words long. Where are the Progressives at now? We are recognised as a credible party and as Labour's best coalition partner. We have a new name, Progressive, and a logo that emphasises we are Positive about people and jobs. "What is Progressive?" _________________________

Another anniversary, a maiden speech 20 years on

A happy gathering at Parliament this week marked the 20th anniversary of Jim Anderton's maiden speech in Sept '84. His words nicely anticipated what independent-of-Labour progressive activists like us are campaigning for: "All I have ever supported and worked for is a fair deal for most New Zealanders - in jobs, homes, health care, and education." 15 years preparing for government, including five years in opposition to his own Labour Government policies in the 1980s, have been followed by five good years in government since 1999.

Highlights? Economic development policies getting Kiwis into jobs, four weeks annual leave, higher minimum wages, paid parental leave, and action on drugs. Some irreverent contributors at the celebration provided glimpses into working with Jim over many years. More on Jim Anderton's maiden speech: and the speech in full from 1984 _________________________

Dunedin Last night

I met Progressive members in Dunedin as part of a series of face-to-face meetings. This afternoon Jim and I are at the Dunedin CAYAD meeting on drugs - these are the people with commitment at the coalface. I'll talk about my members' bill on reducing alcohol harm. The CAYAD meeting:
Public forum next week in Manukau on P, alcohol and other drugs: _________________________

Taxing times for Aussie banks: That's Progressive! This week the Labour Progressive government announced a law change is on the way to ensure the Australian-owned banks that dominate New Zealand will start paying their fair share of tax on their New Zealand-generated income. That'll be another $360 million a year for investing in New Zealand. I call that progressive. See: _________________________

Doctoring intelligence is a very bad idea

Senior Police officers advising the Prime Minister took a United Nations document listing terrorists and their organisations. They creatively added three lines naming the FIS, the party of Ahmed Zaoui, as a terrorist organisation with links to Al Qaeda.

That falsehood ended up in the PM's statement last week updating the New Zealand list of terrorists. When the deception was uncovered, there were red faces all round. False testimony, after all, is a crime. Terrorism is a challenge to democracies. We must have competent, successful, and intelligent counter-terrorism agencies to protect New Zealand from the likes of Al Qaeda. But those who doctor documents don't give me confidence that they are protecting us. Parliament needs to subject the agencies to review. The rule of law is our greatest protection in a free society. _________________________

Can't find a Kiwi website builder - Yeah right!

The Film Commission claims they can't find a local firm to build their website. Yeah right! I'm going to ask my Labour colleague, Judith T., what on earth is going on. The Film Commission receives public money to support Kiwi creativity. There must be some terrible mistake. _________________________

A survey this week shows our own Kiwibank continues to lead its Aussie rivals in customer satisfaction and retention. People are continuing to flee to Kiwibank. _________________________

< > there is more on this and the rest of the week's news including: scholarships targeting early childhood teachers; and investing in Kiwibank. _________________________ On the Robson Hour Sunday 12 - 1 on Radio 531PI this week I am talking to Paula Gillon on her three years in the spotlight as the youngest councillor in the land (North Shore City), Dr Fatima Ashrafi on campaigning for Progressive party votes in Epsom, and Joel Fotu, seeking a Health Board seat.

Tune in to 531AM. Subscribe to robson-on-politics by fax to 04 472 7620 or email to Similarly to unsubscribe.


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