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Speech: Peters - Public Meeting, Kelston Community Hall

Rt. Hon Winston Peters Leader NZ First Address to: Public Meeting, Kelston Community Hall, Corner Awaroa and Gt North Rd, Waitakere City Date: 3 pm, 20 February 2011
2011 - “It looks like New Zealand’s Last Chance”

Today let us talk about the political year ahead – and what the people of New Zealand are facing.

But first, courtesy of the prime minister, a few thoughts about political marriages.

It results from his statement that he did not want to talk to New Zealand First, and Winston Peters.

Talking from his new BMW (that he knew nothing about), he said in a radio interview that taking a partner in a coalition government is like a marriage.

Well, it might be like a marriage for him, but for us it conjured up some terrible images.

Imagine waking up in the morning with Rodney Hide's head on the pillow next to you!

Or Pita Sharples snoring on the other side of the bed!

And when they wake up and start attacking each other you become the collateral damage.

Some marriage

The mind boggles Talk about a fate worse than death!

Now, how John Key chooses his bedfellows of course is up to him.

We cannot say members of New Zealand First are really disappointed not to be asked to hop into bed in some sort of bigamous marriage with National, Act, the Maori and United Parties.

We do have our standards.

We were offered such a shotgun marriage proposal in 2005.

We turned it down

However, we are not here today to discuss the formation of coalition governments before you the people have even voted

This is our position and this is our message for voters.

If you don’t want to vote for National, vote New Zealand First.

If you don’t want to vote for Labour, vote for New Zealand First.

If we have to, and if that is what NZ First decides, we will be pleased to sit on the cross benches guarding the interests of ALL New Zealanders.

We have done it before.

National and Labour can look after themselves.

We will support legislation that's in line with New Zealand First policies.

And we will always support any policy or idea that's good for the country – no matter where it comes from.

We have done it before.

In return we will expect support for our initiatives.

This makes our position clear.

No pre-election deals, no nudge-nudge, wink-wink political horse trading before you the voter have spoken.

Those who argue for pre-election deals are trying to weaken your vote.

They seek to marginalize your role in democracy.

Don’t let them.

Instead of doing pre-election deals, we will concentrate on the big issues facing New Zealanders.

Because, as a wise man once said, “it's not so much where you stand as where you are going that's really important”.

And we have grave fears about the way things are going.

The scenario painted by this government is of a country so laden with debt that the situation can only be relieved by selling assets owned by the people of New Zealand.

Let us be plain about the issue of ownership – these assets belong to the people, were paid for by generations of taxpayers – and they are very valuable.

Mr Key claims he wants to form a forward looking government.

He does not want, he said, to look backwards and we all know why

It is because he is embarking on a giant leap backwards by using the failed policies of the eighties and nineties.

He is actually continuing the problem not finding a solution.

Flogging off state assets for much less than their real value by the mad monetarists Roger Douglas and Ruth Richardson has been ruinous for this country.

Even worse is selling these assets overseas.

Even Treasury warned Mr Key about that

We will become pawns in the profit driven chess games played in foreign boardrooms.

And New Zealanders are not being given a true picture of their country's finances.

The government is using the mushroom principle in its spin about our debt.

You know the mushroom principle – keep the people in the dark and every so often throw them a shovel full of bull manure!

The serious debt that New Zealand suffers from is PRIVATE DEBT AND NOT PUBLIC DEBT.

YOU ARE BEING FED BULL MANURE!

Because why would you start selling power stations, owned by all the taxpayers, to pay off the private debt of some?

It does not make sense!

New Zealand's PUBLIC debt is low by OECD standards.

The problem is the splurge of private lending and borrowing sparked by the housing boom and fed by the Australian-owned trading banks.

Debt is OK and productive when it's used to invest in production, jobs and infrastructure.

Debt is bad when it's used to drive speculation in real estate and the bizarre deals created by shonky finance companies.

And, when it is debt to drive consumption.

Make no mistake, the recession in New Zealand has been caused by the global finance industry and started in the United States.

At its core is appalling greed.

And John Key wants to sell your assets, which will only make our situation worse.

He says he wants to sell your long held investments so he can buy new ones.

That is a crude deception.

You will lose your old investments.

You will not own the new ones.

That is why he does not want to talk to New Zealand First.

He does not want us to block the sale of assets owned by all the people to some of the people.

After the next election, if we are not careful, everything will eventually be up for sale.

This is why New Zealand First is a thorn in National's side.

We would stop public asset sales.

We would keep the foreshore and seabed in public hands through Crown ownership.

We would reverse the savage health cuts that are being made.

We would stop the ruthless increase in government charges.

We would increase the poverty level wages being paid to tens of thousands of New Zealanders.

Remember, one of National's election pledges was that “everybody” would be better off.

We have found this person – this Mr “Everybody”.

He is the boss of the Australian bank Westpac in New Zealand.

His salary is $5.6 million dollars.

When John Key handed out his tax cuts – Mr Everybody got more than $5000 a week extra.

That's right $5,000 a week extra because of National’s tax cut and GST increase.

Now for the unfairness of it all.

National has, in its third year in office, just lifted the minimum wage by 25 cents an hour to $13 an hour.

That means someone on the minimum wage – and there are tens of thousands of them – now receives just over $27,000 a year.

That amounts to about $437 a week take home pay.

It's easy to see the people this government is looking after.

If you are a bank boss on $5.6million, helping cause a recession, you get an extra $5000 a week.

If you are on the minimum wage – you get an extra 25 cents an hour.

Let’s hope you don’t have too far to walk to the local foodbank.

You could also look at it this way.

In two days the Westpac boss gets an extra $2,000.

If you are on the minimum wage, in two days your extra take home pay will give you less than two hours parking in central Auckland.

Sounds fair doesn't it?

There is something else happening that causes deep concern.

We are losing far too many skilled workers to Australia and bringing in too many people who are here for what they can get rather than what they can contribute.

The basic cause of immigration is people going to another country to seek a better life with more prospects.

Thousands of people came to New Zealand from the British Isles and Eastern Europe to escape hardship and misery and to seek prosperity and safety.

The descendants of these immigrants, who became pioneers in this country, are now heading back across the seas to escape hardship here and to seek better prospects.

In doing so yet another social problem is being created.

In many cases they are leaving behind elderly parents who need support in their declining years.

You cannot blame their offspring for fleeing a country where their skills are valued at $13 an hour.

Especially when the minimum wage in Australia is equivalent to $20 an hour when converted to New Zealand currency.

Despite the low wages in New Zealand – unemployment is soaring.

The official unemployment figures say that about seven percent of the workforce is jobless.

Among Maori and Islanders it's about 14 percent, or so the Governments figures say.

The official figures are derived from statistics that count one hours employment a week as a job.

The real figures on unemployment are much higher.

According to Analysts Roy Morgan it is already over 10%

The Maori figures expose the farce of the Maori Party's coalition deal with National.

You will all be aware of the infighting in the Maori Party, which was always bound to happen because that is what some Maori do.

In one way we agree with Hone Harawira.

He is right when he says the coalition with National has been disastrous for ordinary Maori.

Maori unemployment is out of control.

This the real reason why Maori social problems are getting worse and not better.

This is not about being victims of colonisation.

It's about being the victims of government economic policies and the Maori Party has helped create this situation.

While the Maori Party hierarchy posture, pose and powhiri around the place claiming great victories for Maori, the only groups of Maori doing well are the usual suspects.

Corporate Maori and the Treaty travellers.

They are the real backers of the Maori Party.

These are the people driving the dangerous foreshore and seabed legislation that will be giving a select few the private ownership of the foreshore and seabed.

We make this pledge today.

When we get back into Parliament, we will clean up this mess.

Ownership of the foreshore and seabed will be vested back in the Crown on behalf of all New Zealanders.

It will not include an ownership title so it can be flogged off overseas like everything else that we hold.

It was astonishing this week to hear the latest outrageous trans-Tasman economic move.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her government officials arrived here.

They would put Ned Kelly to shame in the way she soft soaped the Prime Minister.

She and John Key signed an agreement to increase investment between Australia and New Zealand and vice versa.

The details are: Investment,

Australia in New Zealand, a new cap of $400 million, up by $300 million

New Zealand in Australia, $1,000 million.

That is a public relations con job.

As Australia raids New Zealand they will point to that $1 billion cap and say how fair and generous they have been.

One would have to be numbingly stupid to fall for this.

It means, essentially, that Australian companies will be able to buy what they don't already own here and what the Chinese haven't snapped up.

Australia's greater wealth and savings means that New Zealand's strategic assets will be even under more threat.

We have a deal with Australia called a Closer Economic Relations.

We've been told over the years that our cross-Tasman economic ties are of great benefit to us.

However, in reality, the last 20 years have seen us swamped by Australian companies led by their banks.

The trade across the Tasman is hugely weighted in favour of Australia.

Ms Gillard kindly said we could export some apples to Australia.

In return the Aussies will be here like a plague of commercial locusts.

They talk about mateship and put their arms around our shoulders like true mates.

At the same time their other hands are emptying the wallets in our back pockets!

Conclusion

Over the next few months you will see a certain smiley face popping up everywhere with a few well chosen quotes created by teams of consultants and spin doctors.

Let us warn him that running a public relations campaign is no substitute for providing some leadership to a country in serious danger on two fronts.

On the external front we face a growing danger of being owned overseas.

Many of us could eventually become landless peasants in our own country.

Our state owned resources are under threat as we speak and who knows what deals are already being negotiated under the table in backrooms.

And what better way to divert attention than by creating a race-based war over the foreshore and seabed and the separatist governance of our local councils.

There is a term for this state of affairs.

It's called “divide and rule”.

This National Party tried to get NZ First out of the way long before the next election campaign.

They knew we would always stand in the way of their second term plans.

In 2009 I received a telephone call initiated by the National Party offering me a diplomatic posting overseas.

This offer was respectfully declined and the caller passing on the message was told that the incident would be made public at some later date.

That offer via another source was repeated in 2010

Now is the time of that later date.

You see there is now no hypocrisy so great that National will not stoop to.

They were quite happy to have Winston Peters representing New Zealand's interests abroad. Strange that.

As long as he was not in New Zealand taking down the “for sale” signs.

We can explain exactly who made the telephone call and he said that he was making it on behalf of the current foreign minister Murray McCully.

Murray is of course, the head of the National Party's dirty tricks division!

Now let them deny it!

We took the precaution of telling two people just after the call was made!

No Minister would act so without his leader knowing

John Key must have known about this.

WARNING

So be on your guard over the next nine months.

Do not believe what you are being told about public debt and the need to sell taxpayer owned assets.

Look at your pay packets, your superannuation, the cost of your groceries and spend your extra 25 cents an hour wisely.

Think of that poor man at the Westpac bank getting a tax cut of over $5000 a week.

And start thinking of November 26th when you can start making changes. Election 2011 looks like New Zealand’s last chance.

Don’t fail to use it

Grab this chance, and come with New Zealand First.

We will not let you down!


ENDS


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