Electorate votes

As I said previously, this election will be decided by electorate votes in a few key electorates. Peter Dunne has now announced he will support a National-led government. National needs as many friends as possible, and Labour as few as possible, if we are to have a change of government. So updated electorate recommendations for a change of government are:

To ensure representation from Act, United Future and The Family Party:

  • Epsom
    • Rodney Hide (Act)
  • Ohariu-Belmont
    • Peter Dunne (United Future)
  • Mangere
    • Jerry Filipaina (Family Party)
  • East Coast Bays
    • Paul Adams (Family Party)
  • Manukau East
    • Papali’i Poutoa Papali’i (Family Party)

To ensure NZ First does not get in:

  • Tauranga
    • Simon Bridges (National)
  • Rimutaka
    • This is more debatable. Probably the National candidate, Richard Whiteside, as many Labour voters will probably vote strategically for Ron Mark, giving Whiteside a chance. But it is a Labour seat currently.

The party vote is where you decide which party policies you support. But the electorate vote can be used strategically under MMP, as it makes a big difference to which minor parties are represented in parliament and which are not. Sometimes this may mean voting for someone whose policies you disagree with – I have recommended candidates from four different parties here. But that is the nature of MMP.

This election, strategic electorate voting is absolutely essential if you want to change the government.

Guy Fawkes

You only have from the 2nd of November (this Sunday) to the 5th of November (next Wednesday) to stock up on fireworks for the next year. Don’t miss out, especially if you want fireworks for election night. And considering the laws are getting more restrictive each year, it probably isn’t a bad idea to keep a few in reserve in case they are illegal next year (while voting for people who will oppose this nanny statism of course!).

And you can’t buy sparklers now except as part of a pack (I bet the retailers will love that, they get to sell more packs of fireworks just because some idiot burnt a hut down with a sparkler a year or so ago).

Isn’t nanny state going crazy, when you have only four days of the year you can buy fireworks. So everyone has to stockpile fireworks then, and have dangerous boxes of gunpowder lying round the house if they think they might want to use fireworks at another stage.

If you can’t afford to buy a pack to get sparklers for your kids, I really don’t recommend that you go to this link and make your own, it could be highly dangerous and possibly illegal, but it is interesting to read how simple it is. If you want to read how other people make fireworks, without actually doing such a dangerous thing yourself, you may do so here.

Does anyone know what the law is around making your own fireworks? The point I am making is that instructions are so readily available on the net that the more retail fireworks are restricted the more people will actually follow the internet instructions, think “what if we put just a bit more of this in”, and do some serious damage.

Hat tip: Not PC

PinkGina on helping the poor

PinkGina made this excellent comment over on Kiwiblog, I just had to reproduce it in full here. It is an excellent illustration of helping people to help themselves:

I thought this was a very timely lesson on human nature…

I was talking to a friend of mines little girl the other day. I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up and she replied, “I want to be Prime Minister!” Both of her parents are Labour supporters and were standing there. So then I asked her, “If you were Prime Minister what would be the first thing you would do?”

She replied, “I’d give houses to all the homeless people.”

“Wow – what a worthy goal.” I told her, “You don’t have to wait until you’re Prime Minister to do that. You can come over to my house and mow, pull weeds, and sweep my yard, and I’ll pay you $50. Then I’ll take you over to the grocery store where this homeless guy hangs out, and you can give him the $50 to use toward a new house.”

Since she is only 6, she thought that over for a few seconds. While her Mum glared at me, she looked me straight in the eye and asked, “Why doesn’t the homeless guy come over and do the work, and you can just pay him the $50?”

And I said, “Welcome to the National Party.”

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime. But ignore the National plug at the end of course, check our our welfare policy instead!

Meet the Candidates meetings

Two “Meet the Candidates” meetings this week I will be attending:

  • Wednesday 29 October, 7:30pm, Lincoln Community Centre, Lincoln
    Selwyn electorate
  • Thursday 30 October, 7:30pm, Cracroft Community Centre, Old Stone House, Shalamar Drive
    Wigram electorate

Feel free to come along, it would be great to meet you.

On the campaign trail

Amy Adams, David Coates and myself had a productive time today talking to people at the Hororata Fair. Well I know I and Amy Adams did, Coates wasn’t wearing any badge (although he had a red tie) so was not recognisable as a candidate unless you already knew him, and I didn’t see him talking to too many people. Strong National heartland though so he can be expected to have little luck!

I was the only candidate that had taken the initiative to get prior approval to attend and advertise there from the organisers, and purchase a stall, which as it turned out was bang in the centre of the entire fair, so from nearly any position if you looked round my truck (with billboards) was plainly seen. I can only thank the organisers for selecting an excellent location for me.

I had a good response and talked to a lot of people, many of whom were interested in the party. Plenty of people are intending to vote National or Act too, which is encouraging as it all points towards a change of government – but this is to be expected in a rural area.

Drinking age

In the minor parties debate tonight, Tariana Turia, Winston Peters and Jim Anderton supported raising the drinking age back to 20. Rodney Hide did not support this, nor did Peter Dunne or Jeanette Fitzsimons, who both pointed out that the problem binge-drinkers are the 13-year-olds, for whom alcohol is illegal anyway. In their opinion changing the drinking age would not affect this at all.

I disagree. Where are these 13-year-olds getting their alcohol from? Sometimes their parents, but not normally enough to really get them into trouble. I would suspect they are primarily getting it from 18-year-old friends.

Raising the age from 18 to 20 won’t stop 18-year-olds drinking. They have always been able to obtain alcohol from their older friends. But it will make it a lot harder for 13-year-olds to obtain alcohol, because they will usually have fewer 20-year-old friends. So raising the drinking age should be an effective way of combatting teenage alcohol abuse.

Jeanette Fitzsimons and Referenda

I noted that when Jeanette Fitzsimons was asked if the Greens would honour the result of a referendum on MMP, she indicated that of course they would.

So I assume, to be consistent, she will also honour the will of the people next year when we have a referendum on the smacking law?

Fat chance of that, but you can always dream.

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