Sunday, 5 October 2008

Why can't NZ be more like Epsom?

The Sunday Star Times has a (rare) good article this morning, about ACT Party leader Rodney Hide. The paper followed him as he campaigned on the streets of Remuera for ACT and for his re-election in the seat of Epsom.

Hide, 51, leader of the Act Party, MP for Epsom, moved along the pavement with pretty little steps and a winning smile on his tanned, tight-skinned dial. He asked: "Vote for me?" He handed out Act leaflets. Few resisted.

Many welcomed the chance to shake his hand. He was among friends; when Hide won Epsom in the last election, he beat his opponent, National's Richard Worth, at all six polling booths in Remuera.
Sporting his eye-catching Yellow suit jacket, ACT's Rodney Hide proved he has supporters of all ages, and both male and female...

"Hello, sir. Vote for me?" The [elderly] man replied, "I bloody well will. Keeping sticking it to Winston. Get him out of parliament and into jail. It's where that bastard belongs..."

Next, a young man in a striped shirt and wraparound sunglasses. Hide had barely opened his mouth when the man said, "Fantastic! Nice to meet you, actually. I'll tell you why I'm voting for Act. First, your policy of zero tolerance on crime. Secondly, what you're always saying about less bureaucracy. And I love your stance on Winston."

Next, a middle-aged businessman who waved away Hide's offer of a leaflet and said, "It's all right. You don't have to bother. You've got my vote." Hide said, "Good on you!" The man replied, "No, good on you. We need someone right of centre in parliament instead of that lesbian government we've got."

Now that's what I call real New Zealanders. People who really care and want New Zealand to become a great country... not just the embarrassing little Pacific Island Dictatorship that it has become over the last decade or so.

Hide isn't always right... He does tell the reporter that he has "huge respect for Helen Clark. I think she's an amazing woman. I have huge respect for Michael Cullen, too. And I've always liked Annette King. There's no one in Labour I disrespect."
However he does admit he "struggles with Trevor Mallard. I think he's just nasty for the sake of being nasty." Yup. There's at few more sitting Labour MPs you could add to that list. (Thankfully, Steve Maharey has already exited the building).

Reading the article, I must admit I get frustrated by New Zealand's current voting system. The problem with a "democracy" (that's the theory of what NZ has anyway), is that it assumes the majority know what's good for them.

And as the sensible people know, the majority often don't really know what's good for them... and unfortunately they are easily distracted by attractive-looking bribes, without realising they'll actually be paying for those bribes through increased taxes/duties/fees/other-socialist-controls.

I do have some sympathy for New Zealand's original electoral system, which restricted voting to Land Owners, or those paying rent over a certain amount. Back in the 1850's there were no separatist "Maori seats"... something only introduced in 1867 as a "temporary measure".

We can at least take heart from an article in yesterday's Dominion Post, which revealed the upcoming General Election drew "a collective yawn from many potential young voters" in Wellington.

While perhaps disappointing (and probably a reflection on New Zealand's falling education standards, and lack of focus on "real" subjects in school), it does save the country from several thousand "protest" votes from young voters ticking "Green" simply because their teachers have drilled them in the false religions of "Climate Change" and "Political Correctness".

* Sunday Star Times: Who can say no to Rodney Hide?

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