New Zealand First

Politicians who resort to using courts to bully broadcasters deserve what they get

Colin Craig is a bully.

He uses the law to try to silence critics, and now he has gone to court to bully TV3, a private company, to force them to have him on their minor party debate show.

Conservatives leader Colin Craig has won an eleventh-hour High Court scrap over his exclusion from a televised political debate.

TV3′s political show The Nation did not invite Mr Craig to a minor parties debate tomorrow morning, which will include the Green Party, New Zealand First, the Maori Party, Act, Mana and United Future.

Mr Craig filed urgent legal proceedings with the High Court at Auckland today and his application for an interim injunction to restrict the screening of the debate without him was heard this afternoon.

Justice Murray Gilbert sided with the Conservative Party leader saying any inconvenience to MediaWorks was outweighed by the public interest in having Mr Craig at the debate.

The debate cannot legally go ahead without his inclusion.

MediaWorks confirmed that rather than scrap tomorrow’s debate, they would include Mr Craig.

“We’ll have to somehow squeeze him in,” said director of news Mark Jennings.

But The Nation’s Tim Watkin said the production values of the show would suffer as a result.

Each political leader will get less than five minutes to speak because of the late inclusion, he said.

Read more »

Andrea Vance’s 5 reasons not to trust politicians

Andrea Vance writes up her 5 reasons not to trust politicians.

This is why she is a better journalist than I will ever pretend to be…I have just one reason…they are politicians.

Her first one is the “Do as I say not as I do” reason, that all politicans fall prey too, in this case she quotes John Key, but she had rich pickings on that one.

A swift kick for Laila Harre too, but a better one would have been to quote her claims on Vote Chat that Kim Dotcom is doing great things for NZ…pity Laila Harre hasn’t asked the unpaid creditors, staff and servants that are still waiting for the big man to cough up.

3. LABOUR LEADER David Cunliffe:

”Labour’s position is very clear: no coat-tails.”

It’s a miracle David Cunliffe’s tongue hasn’t tied itself in knots. It’s a no to any pre-election deals, he says.  Labour would move to scrap the coat-tailing provision of MMP within 100 days of taking office.

This conveniently ignores the fact that to form a government – and pass the promised electoral reform – they’ll almost certainly require the support of Internet-Mana. Which was formed solely to take advantage of coat-tailing!

There is a reason David Cunliffe’s mouth turns down on both sides…it is from contorting his mouth to issue platitudes to different audiences.   Read more »

Could Ron Mark succeed Winston Peters?

With the death blow delivered to Colin Craig’s cult party the focus has moved onto NZ First.

But with Winston Peters at an advanced age the future is by no means secure for them.

They need a successor to Winston…because frankly the sycophants there now aren’t up to much other than propping up Winston as he weaves his way home from the Green Parrot.

Former New Zealand First MP Ron Mark has confirmed he is considering the offer of what the Herald understands is a high place on the party’s list that would be likely to take him back into Parliament but says his commitment to his iwi may trump political ambition.

The Herald understands Mr Mark is being courted both as a list candidate and as a potential successor to leader Winston Peters, in part because of his good relationship with National as the two parties consider a potential post-election deal.

Speculation that Mr Marks, who is still a member, may return to active involvement in NZ First was fired by his appearance at the recent annual conference in Auckland.

Sources subsequently told the Herald he is being pursued as a list candidate and potential future leader.

“A lot of people have been asking me for a long time,” he told the Herald last night.   Read more »

There will be no deal for Colin Craig in East Coast Bays

Adam Dudding from Fairfax explains why it is that National won’t do a deal with Colin Craig.

It is pretty simple really…the damage of such a deal is worse than the consequences of no deal.

Key’s decision on whether to indulge the supplicant or not (which he’s promised to reveal this week) depends partly on how desperately National needs an extra seat.

But last weekend, the calculation grew more complex: NZ First leader Winston Peters hinted that if National and the Conservatives got cute in East Coast Bays, he might run in the electorate himself. And given the old rogue’s mysterious allure, this could stuff things up for National and Craig.

With Craig’s Conservative Party last week polling nationally at 1.3 per cent, this is his only serious option for making it to Parliament.

A quick and dirty assessment by the Sunday Star-Times suggests things aren’t a great deal better in the electorate itself.

On Friday afternoon we set up an informal polling booth at Browns Bay’s La Tropezienne bakery/cafe, in which customers were given a marble and invited to drop it in the jar of their preferred candidate.

By yesterday afternoon, 53 marbles had been cast: 34 for McCully, seven for Peters and just one for Craig.

Six, four and one marble respectively were cast for Labour’s Greg Milner-White, Green Teresa Moore and “other”.

The result is horribly unscientific, yet the figure for McCully is startlingly similar to McCully’s 64.98 per cent electoral result in 2011, and that single marble for Craig is – well, a little tragic.

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Labour already tried that Winston, wasn’t a winner

Winston Peters is channelling Labour with his silly GST suggestions.

Removing GST from food never worked for Labour, despite them claiming that was a game changer policy.

NZ First has announced a plan to remove GST from food, as part of several policies announced at its party conference.

Leader Winston Peters also said the party wanted GST removed from rates on residential property calling it a “tax on tax deceit”.

“This bold policy aims at the heart of the inequality undermining our society,” Peters said.

Labour had a policy of removing GST from fresh fruit and vegetables going into the 2011 election but it has since been dropped by the party. Last week Peters accused the Conservative Party of plagiarism because it believed the party was lifting its policies.

Peters said the policy was estimated to cost $3 billion a year, and would be funded by a clamp down on “tax evasion and the black economy”, which it estimated to cost $7 billion a year, and what Peters said was “drawing on the projected surplus of billions in the years ahead that result from running a sound economy”.

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It’s called a cheque Colin, and stuff all people use them these days

This is a quote from Colin Craig:

“I couldn’t even buy stationary at the shop this morning, without giving the man behind the counter a signed autograph.”

A signed autograph? Really? You autographed an autograph? Was it your dad?

The man is a complete muppet.

Stupidly he is also going toe to toe with Winston Peters, who is loving the attention and promising crazy policies like BCIR.

If National wants Conservative Party support it will have to make referendums binding, says the party’s leader Colin Craig.

He’s used his keynote speech at the party’s annual conference this weekend to highlight the party’s policy as a “bottom line” for any coalition negotiations.

Speaking to about 120 of the party’s rank and file, Craig said National was running a “nanny state”, that had grown “too big and too proud”.

“It’s time the government was smaller, it’s time the government was more efficient and it’s time the government was beholden to the people who voted them in.   Read more »

Could convergence become an issue

Labour continues to be mired in the 20s, the Greens are slowly climbing towards the 20s…hoovering up the disaffected hard left of Labour as The Cunliffe continues to disappoint.

Could convergence become an issue, where the Greens supplant Labour as the largest opposition party.

Matthew Hooton discussed that in his column at the NBR:

Don’t rule out convergence.

Labour’s disastrous decision to replace David Shearer with David Cunliffe and spend nearly a year swinging to the far left has inevitably crashed its poll numbers.

The recent ploy to swing back to the centreappears to have come too late. The days are long gone when Mr Shearer had Labour polling around the mid-30s and, with the Greens in the low teens, well on track to become prime minister. In both the major polls released this week, Roy Morgan and Fairfax-Ipsos, Mr Cunliffe’s Labour was languishing under 25%.

Both polls were taken mainly after Mr Cunliffe’s apology for being a man, but also after his major education announcements. Despite Labour strategists privately claiming their internal polling responded favourably, the public polls suggest that the promises of cheap laptops and slightly smaller classes have failed to capture the imagination of middle-class parents.

Worse for Labour, while there may be good evidence the polls tend to overestimate National’s support by around 5% at the expense of smaller parties, the trend line for Labour in at least the last two elections has almost exactly predicted its actual party vote.

In 2011, Phil Goff led Labour to its worst result since 1925. If Mr Cunliffe’s tilt to the centre continues to fail, he risks taking New Zealand’s oldest political party below the 24% it won in the first two elections following the World War I.

Poll numbers also have an element of self-fulfilling prophecy. People don’t like voting for losers. As the election nears, Labour risks losing a crucial few further points to the Greens, Internet-Mana and NZ First.

Bill English currently wears the electoral dunce cap in the New Zealand parliament, having led National to its 21% debacle in 2002. The finance minister may dare to hope he might finally get to pass it on to Mr Cunliffe after September 20.

For all this, the risk of a change of government remains high.   Read more »

Winston Peters’ baubles are looking very unlikely

NEXT! Winston Peters

The Green Parrot is squealing like a pig, with Winston Peters losing so many staff and now backing asset sales.

Hi Cam,

You might be interested to know that there is real panic inside NZ First at the moment.

As well as having to show Api [Dawson] to the exit and all the turnover in staff in Winston’s office, this weekend looks set to be a big embarrassment for Winston.

As of 12pm today, only 115 people have registered to attend the conference this weekend.

As a comparison in 2011 it was 350 people registered.

Cheers
[redacted]

With NZ First leaking like a sieve, there will no doubt be more to come.

Sledge-fest between Winston Peters and the Taxpayers Union

Winston Peters is so desperate for attention he has decided to attack the Taxpayers Union.

The Taxpayers’ Union’s criticism of Tauranga City Councillor Clayton Mitchell standing as a New Zealand First candidate for the next election is typical inane carping from the organisation, says New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters.

“This is a self-appointed organisation without membership, or as the English would say, ‘a thorough stuffed shirt affair’.

“There have been countless members of Parliament who began in local government, were elected, and stood down at the next local government election. In doing so they avoided the local ratepayers’ having to pay for an expensive by-election.

“Mr Mitchell proposes to stand down at the next local government election if, as is highly likely, he becomes an MP on the 20th September.

“The jaundiced bias of Jordan Williams, the self-appointed executive director of the Taxpayers’ Union, is exposed in that despite the numerous examples of local body councillors and mayors becoming MPs he inexplicably decides to just pick on New Zealand First.

“Many New Zealanders will remember Mr Williams’ attack on New Zealand First at the last election under the guise of the Vote for Change anti-MMP campaign in which they put up hundreds of hoardings all attacking the New Zealand First Leader.

“Their puerile behaviour failed in 2011 and will fail again in 2014,” says Mr Peters.

Read more »

Guest Post – Is the prospect of an unstable Government Holding Labour Back

A regular reader and correspondent sent in this guest post about Labour.


I enjoy reading blogs and opinion pieces from across the political spectrum.  Including The Standard, The Daily Blog as well as various opinion pieces in the newspapers.

At present we are less than 80 days away from the 2014 election.  The election and the possible outcomes are constantly on the minds of the political tragics from both the left and the right.  Much of NZ don’t really seem to care.  They don’t understand that the outcome of the 2014 election may have an impact on many aspects of their life.

I spend much time thinking what will be the makeup of the government after 20 September 2014.  Personally (and this may come as a surprise to some people is that I am probably comfortable with a Centre left Government.  I would be much more happy with a National Party Government, but a Centre Left Government in the mould of the 1999-2008 Government would be acceptable.  I have a stable job and my mortgage is very manageable.  But there is one thing that worries me greatly.

My deep concern which is very dear to my heart is how stable will a Left Government be.  I believe that a stable Government will be the single most important outcome of the 2014 election.

An unstable Government is not going to be good for NZ.  The people most impacted will be the typical supporter of one of the many left parties.  Helen Clark held together very successfully coalition Governments.  John Key has done had it easier with options to the right with Act and Dunne in the centre, and to the left with the Maori Party.  Clark had strength of personality, the stick of Heather Simpson, and a caucus which was more or less 100% behind her.  Key remains National’s biggest asset and in the latest round of opinion poll is still untouchable with over 50.0% party support and an unprecedented support as the preferred Prime Minister.  There are no public rumblings of dissent.

But there is a massive issue looming for any in-coming Labour led Government.  And this is the point of this guest column.  I am genuinely interested in the views of the left supporters (if there are any who lurk here)  My proposition is that part of the reason (there are a whole lot of reasons) why support for the left (Labour and Greens) is barely moving off 40% is that the left are not convincing the middle ground voters that they will be able to deliver stable Government to NZ.  The Coalition of the Left will be made up of multiple parties.     Read more »