Tag Archives: Helen Clark

Meet our new Prime Minister, National’s Mr John Key

OMG that was a  l-o-o-o-n-g  9 years! I was not surprised by anything much at this election, except perhaps that the moronic Greens managed to extend their vote.

Thank goodness Mr Key has won so emphatically, that he shouldn’t have to even talk to the likes of them.

I was surprised however,  by Helen Clark resigning straight away, on the night. As was everyone,  by the sounds of it. I knew she was gonna go,  but didn’t think she’d be that abrupt about it.

I was not surprised, but considerably sorry to see NZ First fall under the 5% radar, and Winston, very predictably failing to take the Tauranga seat.

Rodney did extremely well for Act, focussing his efforts, as at the last election, on his electorate seat of Epsom, which he again won, so even though they didn’t make the 5%, they still have 5 MP’s in the house, and they will make a natural ally for National.

The Kiwi Party in the end, barely registered on the overall scale, but I wish I could have voted for them.

John Key is our new leader.  So that proves it. There must indeed be, a God up there, in heaven.  🙂


Election Day is here

I thought, up until a few hours ago, that I knew how I was going to vote. But no … better think again.

I had thought I’d give my party vote to the Kiwi Party – and would still love to – but if I want a change of government, and I certainly do, then I have to give it to National. I think this is going to be a very interesting election. The smaller party vote (other than perhaps the Maori Party), is likely to dry up in my estimation.

Can’t remember if I posted this before, but I think win or lose, Helen Clark will resign within 2 months after this election. I think she’s got a plum overseas job lined up, and is ready to fly the coop. No particular reason for this one. Just a feeling.

So anyway, its Party Vote National for me, and maybe I’ll give Tony Christiansen a shot for the local choice. In truth I would have loved to vote for the Kiwi Party. They deserved my vote, simply for the quality of their marketing if nothing else. But if John Key manages not to lose it, then he deserves it too. I like his style. I like that he has matured a bit in terms of his public debating etc.

I also think this is a unique opportunity for NZ. We’ve never had an independently wealthy individual (i.e. someone who is already a significant financial success) running the place. Dont get me wrong. I appreciate that there are other measures of success besides money, but most things one aspires to, require a certain level of funds in the kitty, and the same is true of nations. Now is the time to give someone like him a shot. We’re going in to what is possibly the worst recession in many decades. What have we got to lose? Lets see what he’s made of.

NZ Parliamentary Elections 2008

Ok, I’m going to retract my original prediction. It all appears to be going very much National’s way, although there are still a little over 3 weeks before polling day, on November 8th I believe.

The reason I’ve done this about turn, and decided to go with the pundits in predicting a National win, is that there seems to be an appetite for a change of government out there. It’s not so much about National or Labour as it is “let’s have someone new”. So there you have it.  John Key’s boyhood prediction of becoming Prime Minister, may well be about to come true.

The one thing I do not trust him about (and remember, I am generally pro-National), is Nuclear Power. I think he’ll have the damn things under construction, very early in his term. It would be hard to forgive that.

I admire his work ethic and results-oriented style, and I also admire the fact that he appears to be well and truly holding his own against the vastly more experienced Clark. But if he takes New Zealand down the Nuclear Path (BTW, I am no greenie),  it will be the most blatant bit of money making at our country’s expense, ever seen in our history I believe. My six-year old is worried about nuclear power coming to this country. I hope the day doesn’t arrive, when I have to tell him its here.

GST on Food

There is apparently a petition going ’round right now, asking the Government to remove the GST on food.

GST in our country stands for Goods and Services Tax, similar in concept I believe, to VAT in the U.K. In essence it is a tax on consumption and is currently rated at 12.5% across the board. There are very few things which are not subject to GST, like residential rentals and exports (zero rated, so not what you’d call exempt status) and some financial services I think.

In any case, the momentum for this request has clearly come from hugely escalating household costs. Its not just the food – and we’re still reeling from the 50% or so increase in cheese and butter – but also the petrol, and the flow-on increases which come from rising fuel bills. 28% increase in the supermarket over the last year according to a Herald survey.  Sounds pretty spot on to me, so its hard to blame anyone for feeling the pinch and looking for some relief. But calling for the government to step in – what folly!

Other countries observe our system (the GST that is) with some envy, because they’ve made their own versions far too complicated to administer effectively. And no doubt, having once gone down that path, find it nigh impossible to extricate themselves. New Zealand learned from these mistakes, and implemented a clean, uncluttered version which is no doubt much less expensive to administer and to collect.

Again, I have to begrudgingly admire Helen Clark for her initial refusal to consider such a prospect. On the basis of the political “balls” she generally displays, one has reason to hope that she will in fact stand her ground on this issue.

I am, like any Kiwi housewife, well aware of the all out assault that recent conditions (add high mortgage interest rates to that previous list) represent on the average family’s budget. But for some reason, the very idea of “Government help” evokes mental images of the endless queues of people in Gorbachev’s Russia, waiting to buy food for who knows how long, outside empty shops. 

And in asking the Government to step in, what does that really say about us? Whatever happened to the resourceful, self-reliant and proud Kiwis? Surely these well-meaning people who are advancing this petition, can spend their energies more usefully and constructively than begging for help? For whatever reason, they don’t seem to realize that they are by implication, fostering the idea that we are all somehow “helpless” in the face of all these external influences. That’s the opposite of empowering people. Can we come up with ways to empower, rather than sowing the seeds of helplessness/hopelessness?

As for the GST, it aint broke, so please … dont fix it.

NZ Election Prediction 2008

Okay, here goes. My foray into the political seerscape.

The polls a few weeks ago, (and I don’t keep up with them – just happened to hear this), show John Key well ahead of Helen Clark as preferred Prime Minister, and Labour generally lagging behind National overall. It all looks to be swinging National’s way.

Well, I’m going to go against the tide and predict a win for Helen Clark and the current Labour Government. This is coming from a National supporter you realize. I don’t mind declaring myself up front here. I am no unbiassed political commentator. Pretty much right wing, through and through.

My reasoning though, stems from two things, and one thing most of all. Helen Clark is the only master political strategist I can see on this horizon. And even if I don’t like her party or her socialist agenda, I do admire her. She’s got guts and stands her ground when it matters to her – the Waitangi celebrations are an example of this. A further example, and one of the few things I have ever supported this government over, is not sucking up to George Bush and joining America’s illegal war in Iraq like John Howard did.

At the end of the day, John Key is still a bit of a novice, and she is endowed with a political sixth sense that hasn’t been seen in this country I believe, since Rob Muldoon held the reins of power over an extended period of time, as she has. Winston Peters may be an exception in terms of reading the public mind, but National doesn’t have a leader or even a senior member from what I’ve seen so far, of her stature and sheer political instinct.