22 Oct 2008

Ironies on the Campaign Trail

Last night I went along to a "Meet the Candidates" presentation to hear and see those who would represent the electorate in Parliament. The evening was one of irony and Monty Pythonish humour.
First, there were three candidates who were immigrants to New Zealand - each proclaimed that they were here because they saw opportunities and possibilities for them by moving from their country of birth. The National and Act candidates, both Chinese born, then condemned New Zealanders for following their example and traveling overseas for experience, opportunity and gaining knowledge of other cultures and societies. One was left wondering why it was OK for them to emigrate, to travel overseas but for young New Zealanders to do the same is to be seen as betraying the country?
Second, there was a Kiwi Party candidate who supports the repeal of the law protecting children from violence in the home on the basis that this would stop parents being classed as criminals for chastising their children, sincerely advocating the use of the rattan, a la Singapore, as a deterrent to criminals while declaring that N.Z. shouldn't become a police state. Well, at least he was consistent even if confused about the nature of a police state.
Third, the ACT candidate called for deregulation of business so that they could flourish as businesses do in the deregulated environment of China as well as calling for the removal of bureaucrats who interfere with the free market practices of business while advocating the expenditure of $1 Billion to crack down on crime.
He seemed to forget that in the deregulated, free market of Chinese business where the bueaucracy didn't maintain checks on the business practices criminal behaviour was rife. A point well appreciated by Fonterra!!
Then, again, the ACT candidate argued for the removal of taxation to allow the individual to decide how best to spend their money but then failed to explain where the money would come from to pay for their $1 Billion Anti-crime policy as well as the provision of what education, justice, defence, infra structure maintenance....
He, too, didn't seem to appreciate that the policies he was calling for would create a police state in New Zealand even though he'd decided to emigrate here to escape such a police ridden state!
Then, the National candidate was prepared to defend Lockwood Smith as a credible politician when, apparently, the only value Lockwood would have placed in her would be her small hands.
Mind you she also declared that her esteemed leader was an responsible experienced manager of finances while glossing over, or conveniently forgetting, his role in the 1987-88 money trader speculation on the NZ dollar that almost caused a collapse of the NZ economy. Hardly the actions of a responsible New Zealander one would have thought but, then, as I stated it was a night filled with ironies.

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