Saturday, 14 April 2007

Labour's bid for Free Money could fail

The Labour Party looks set to fail in its bid to extract millions of dollars of free funding out of taxpayers each year, to fund its propaganda campaigns.

Labour needs the support of the minor parties to get its undemocratic proposals through, but NZ First leader Winston Peters is refusing to budge over his opposition to the state funding of political parties.

The taxpayer funding of parties is just part of a raft of anti-free speech campaign reforms Labour is trying to hammer through to help them cling to power. The party wants to limit anonymous donations to less than $5000 and slash third-party spending.

Labour is writing and negotiating its plans behind closed doors, to ensure the changes are swung firmly in its favour. While the party's looking at a ban on foreign donations, that wouldn't apply to expats living overseas... ensuring Labour's overseas financiers like Owen Glenn can continue to make million dollar donations.

Labour is also getting back to its communist roots, with plans to limit the ability of the Opposition and third parties to criticise the Government for the entire election year, not just during the 3 months before an election.

However, the Government would still be free to embark on multi-million dollar taxpayer-funded PR campaigns under the guise of education (Working for Families, Kiwisaver, etc).

Labour wants to force third parties to obtain "a free speech permit" (What The!?!) in election year if they plan to campaign against the Government.

Funnily enough, Crown Law has advised Labour that those proposals would actually breach freedom of expression protections in the Bill of Rights ;-) Labour also wants a spending cap of $60,000 per group, allowing funds to still roll in from hundreds of Union branches from Kaitaia to Bluff.

Lucyna has posted Chris Trotter's latest column from the Dom Post, where the trendy socialist tried to argue that Labour needs state funding because of the "political fines" of $800,000 it owes the New Zealand taxpayer for spending their hard-earned money on a bunch of glossy "pledge cards" advertisements.

* Stuff: Bid for state funding set to collapse

* NZ Herald: Fran O'Sullivan: Labour's grubby spending ploy
* DPF's Kiwiblog: Labour's plan to stifle criticism breach the Bill of Rights
* Clint Heine: Can you pick the party?...

[ Right now I'm listening to:
^ Linkin Park - What I've Done
^ Serebro - Song #1 (Russian Eurovison entry) ]

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