Peters: John Key's Mistake

Published: Tue 28 Oct 2008 01:20 PM
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Media Release – Embargoed Against Delivery (1pm)
Rt Honourable Winston Peters address to a public meeting at Massey High School, 274 Don Buck Road, 1pm, Sunday 26 October 2008.
“From X Factor to Kiwi Factor” and “John Key’s Mistake”
It's always a pleasure to be back in this part of Auckland.
During this election campaign we have put our record on the table.
We have shown what we have delivered.
We have set out how we have fulfilled the pledges we made in the last election in 2005.
We stand by our record.
We know that people value the stabilising force that New Zealand First has brought and will continue to bring to Parliament.
But what New Zealand First contributes to our form of democracy is more than just a series of policy “wins” - impressive though they are.
Today I want to explain why New Zealanders need New Zealand First in the next Parliament.
Despite all sorts of noise and distraction that has been unleashed on us, fair minded New Zealanders know that there is something unique and distinctive about New Zealand First.
New Zealand First has an X Factor – and it's called The Kiwi Factor.
Above all everyone knows that New Zealand First is of New Zealand and for New Zealand, 100 percent.
Without qualification.
Without equivocation.
Without 50 pages of fine print.
No other party can justifiably make that claim.
No other party has right from the start pitched itself to serve all New Zealanders.
When we advocate a policy we look at the big picture – the New Zealand picture.
Our key test is this – does this benefit New Zealand as a whole?
We reflect the traditional and unique New Zealand ethos and outlook.
All the other parties are either offshoots – derivatives – or what we might term special interest parties.
New Zealand First is not a clone of some overseas party or interest.
Labour look to its counterparts in Australia and the UK for its ultimate guidance.
Helen Clark often popped off to have tea and crumpets with Tony Blair to talk Labour tactics.
National at its core serves the interests of corporate business – invariably foreign owned business. Their campaign is managed by Australian business interests.
The Business Roundtable and National share the same bed.
For their part, ACT, United and the Greens and the Maori are all, fundamentally, single idea parties.
Their inability to transcend that idea renders them not only of limited value, but potentially dangerous to our parliamentary process.
And because New Zealand First is 100 percent Kiwi – to draw a current phrase from the US election campaign we are “transformational”.
What that means in practice can be summed up in these main points.
1. We are truly multi-racial -
New Zealand First transcends race – we are a truly multi-racial party - ever noticed that the leader is Maori?
(As a point of contrast - just look at how much slack the media has cut the Maori party – despite its entire premise and purpose being racist!)
We are not a race based party – in fact - we believe race based politics will divide and ruin our country.
2. We stand for NZ -
Our position is always to uphold the national interest even when we stand alone
Putting New Zealand’s interests first has never been a problem for New Zealand First – we have an internal gyroscope that keeps us headed in the right direction.
Time and again – whether it is over so-called free trade agreements, immigration or outrages such as the Zaoui affair – we have been willing to run the risk of unpopularity – and make the case for New Zealanders.
Patriotism means something for New Zealand First – not just as a bit of tokenistic flag waving from time to time in a rugby stadium.
3. We get it right- nearly all of the time
No party is infallible. We are a group of human beings – we make mistakes but, with due modesty, we can claim that on the big policy issues we have got it right nearly all of the time.
On the economy - law and order - immigration - the Treaty - our policies, once severely criticised are now endorsed as mainstream (always without acknowledgement of course).
4. We look ahead -
We don’t have a crystal ball, but we don’t live under a cloud of make believe and illusion like others.
What we are prepared to do on important issues like immigration and free trade is to look beyond the present and try and foresee future risks.
We call that prudence – our political opponents call it provocative.
But unlike the other parties we always have our radar switched on.
As a most recent example – we were advocating the introduction of guarantees on bank deposits months ago – because we did not have to wait for the obvious to happen before speaking up. We argue for a Government Depositor Partnership on Kiwibank. Not privatisation but capital expansion in a cash strapped world.
The NZ Herald calls this a “lead balloon”. Not bad when they refused to print one word about our plan. But New Zealanders love the idea when it is explained properly to them.
5. We provide good sense -
Kiwis want to hear good sense coming out of Parliament.
Because when you listen to the other parties it is in often in short supply.
They will have you believe that immigration costs New Zealand nothing and is the path to prosperity.
They will have you believe that we can go on having key assets owned offshore.
They will go on making excuses for criminal gangs.
They will turn a blind eye to the rip offs of the Treaty Industry.
6. We are right for the times -
The financial turmoil of recent months will have a profound impact – in New Zealand and elsewhere.
In many respects this upheaval can be seen as a great reawakening.
Suddenly a whole lot of illusions have been exposed.
Property values – share values – indebtedness – the joys of globalisation.
New Zealand First has never been a party of illusions.
Put simply the whole thrust of our economic strategy has always been to reduce New Zealand’s exposure and vulnerability to economic shocks by tackling foreign ownership, boosting exports and shrinking the overseas debt.
For example, New Zealand First did not buy into the prevailing euphoria over the free trade deal with China.
To us that deal had more make believe than real hard thinking.
Supporters argues that it would gain us between $180 and $350 million. How woolly are those calculations. The layoffs in China right now means we won’t even make $180 million.
A well planned export tax support plan would make 10 times that much. But the globalists need puffery and in over two decades all their promises now lay before us in dust. Their nirvana of internationalism has lured us in to this moment where we now have to bail out their banks.
What irony, what tragedy.
A lot of New Zealanders share our preference for facing up to the facts.
The financial crunch has come more swiftly and dramatically than almost anyone anticipated and has transformed the whole economic outlook for New Zealand and the world.
Political wishful thinking - political expediency - political correctness – are luxuries we can no longer indulge in as a nation.
These are dangerous times.
In this election, Labour, National and the other parties are downplaying the implications of what lies ahead.
Now the security of the New Zealanders and the New Zealand economy must be paramount – as it always has been for New Zealand First.
Make no mistake - those who will end up paying for the orgy of greed and folly that has brought down financial markets are ordinary people – here and overseas, just like you.
You don’t have to like Winston Peters – to know that New Zealand First is the only party with the plan to protect and save this country.
We have real solutions for New Zealand's long term economic viability and future prosperity.
We are talking about responsible capitalism.
This must apply to large scale development and individual households.
Now other political parties want to see more of the New Zealand Superannuation Fund used in New Zealand. They didn’t back then when we argued for it. They didn’t when we argued for the Chilean and Singaporean models of domestic investment.
Now all of a sudden the other parties and Treasury agree.
What irony, what tragedy.
We have a real economic plan.
We have always believed the superannuation fund should be used to sustain planned infrastructure growth in NZ.
The provision of new infrastructure is fundamental to growth in New Zealand and this goes back to the 1870s and the times of Julius Vogel.
Cashing in current shares held by the fund is not an option – we would lose too much.
The sensible approach is to review the bond market and set up an Infrastructure Bond System.
The super fund would take up a share of these bonds annually from 2010 – and the bonds would also be available to the public directly. This is a god given chance to invest in ourselves.
We must also focus KiwiSaver to ensure our savings will eventually liberate New Zealand from international capital markets.
In Australia, for example, there is a savings base of $1.3 trillion dollars. Even accounting for its relative size compared to New Zealand, that is still six times what we have here.
Which is why savings plans, such as KiwiSaver, which New Zealand First votes made possible must be part of the solution to invigorate the New Zealand capital market.
Capital, here, is cash and the life blood of an entrepreneurial New Zealand.
Equally, equity and robust businesses are the best source of new capital within New Zealand.
In combination, they ensure that we will have the resilience in turbulent global markets.
And we must address this at the individual household level.
What we believe must be considered is a Homeowners Equity Access Scheme to assist home owners to meet their outgoings and improve their quality of life.
The objective must be to enable the conversion of untapped home equity into long term tax free income without reducing property equity or creating uncontrollable debt.
This would see an end to the reverse mortgage trend which will deliver the houses of an entire generation to the banks and finance houses, within 15 years, and nothing to the next generation.
In other words Grandma reverse mortgages her home. All equity is lost within 15 years. She’s broke and the grand children get nothing.
This scheme would preserve home ownership for the benefit of the retiree, spouse, dependents and beneficiaries and provide income to reduce the increasing burden of expenses.
This is the solution required to make our capital and equity work for our people – rather than leaving it at the mercy of foreign markets and finance houses.
These are the real policy solutions that New Zealand First alone is prepared to put on the table to protect and save your lifestyle and future.
Now about this election campaign and some political tactics.
During an election campaign parties jockey for position to get the best possible outcome for themselves.
The Greens have said they will only go with Labour. Act will only go with National. United Future will jump on the closest bandwagon, the Maori Party is going with both National and Labour.
And we are left in the middle.
Our position is exactly the same as it has always been.
We will let the voters work out the numbers and then we will talk about forming governments, or confidence and supply agreements, or vote issue by issue.
And we are ignoring John Key's attempts to form governments before a vote is cast.
There is another subject we have to talk about today and with reluctance.
On Friday New Zealand First was forced to reveal that we donated money to a trust set up for a brave woman who was beaten and left for dead by a convicted murderer in the Panmure RSA murders seven years ago.
We made this donation public because a newspaper reporter was hounding her, again trying to make out that something sinister was going on.
Yesterday – John Key said we should not have given the money to her. But he forgot to mention that National changed the ACC laws in 1999 to cut out lump sum compensation so that Susan Couch got nothing.
We helped bring the ACC payments back but Susan Couch was caught in a time warp, when ACC was not available to her.
None of John Keys colleagues informed him of that or Nationals actions in 1999 denying people like Susan Couch ACC relief. Only New Zealand First could keep a person like John Key honest or give him some historical perspective.
Now National are going to give the ACC system to Australian insurance companies. They will be siphoning off two million a year to Australia.
The work is already being done. It has been underway for months. Ask the National Party!
Accident victims and the victims of crime will be at the mercy of Australian insurance companies.
Give us your vote and we will stop them.
In this game you never, never say never.
In 2002 Labour rejected us – but we set this difference aside and came up with the solution to the foreshore and seabed problem, Cullen Fund and KiwiSaver plus a number of other burning issues.
We will work constructively with anybody for the good of New Zealand.
But we will never line up with vested interests who seek their selfish advance at the cost of everybody else. That is why so much money is behind the dirtiest campaign in our history. It’s paying for the billboards of bile, deceit and hate.
And the invasion of foreign political campaign strategies of manipulation where most of the puppets in this pay play are unknowingly involved.
We have no hidden agenda or unprincipled platform to hinder us working with other parties through the difficult times ahead.
Remember that we have the “X” factor.
The “X” factor wins matches.
It overcomes impossible odds.
It believes in itself and in the inherent good of this great country and its tolerant people.
You don't have to love us – but we are on your side and we will always protect you and save this part of the world that was once called “God's Own” country.
Send out from West Auckland today a clear unmistakable uncompromising message. That we are aware of the plans and purposes of others. That we know of their secret agenda. That we will never be pawns of their selfish self serving agenda.
We, together, can and will stop them. We will rebuild our country for the many not the few. We will construct our economy for every New Zealander not the insatiable lust of over mighty subjects.
That is our vision, that is our commitment, that is our commission. To Protect and Save our New Zealand.
But to do all that we must in the closing galvanising days of political choice and great chance let us promise each other to do it.
Give your party vote to New Zealand First.

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