Sunday, December 22, 2013


Returned home yesterday from a couple of weeks 'down-country'.    Had a stop-over at Parliament to present my submission to the Select Committee considering the Veterans' Support Bill.    Was given a good hearing but didn't know, until the e-mails started arriving, that the session was being webcast.    I must admit to some small surprise at the numbers of people who follow the proceeding of Parliament that closely.

The Select Committee comprised eleven members.   Six National, three Labour and one each from the Greens and Winston First.    National maintained a full bench throughout the hearing.   Labour's showing varied between one and two.   I am concerned that Phil Goff, their spokesman on Veteran's Affairs, was a no-show even though he was in the building.    The questioning was sympathetic and demonstrated that those asking the questions had clearly read the written submissions in advance of the oral submissions.    My submission related to the proposal to establish a Veteran's Advisory Board outlined in the Bill.   I argued that the veteran community had earned the right to have issues that concern them considered in a bi-partisan forum based on the legislative model that governs the workings of the Lottery Grants Board.

From there it was up to Greytown to daughters farm where, on a very hot Wairarapa day, I was greeted with the news that I was being roped into haymaking.    Can report that the 178 bales that I stacked revealed pains in places that had never experienced pain.    Still, the cold beer helped dull the ache.

A slow journey home via Taupo listening to the cricket as much as Pam would let me.   Does Jeremy Coney have to be our most insightful commentator in any sport or not?   He is a quite superb wordsmith and a pleasure to listen to.   He beats most, if not all, TV commentators hands down.

Heading back down to Bombay for Christmas.   Can I take the opportunity to wish my co-bloggers and all our commentators the very best for the festive season.    Special greetings to the 'Judge' and EtC and to my old mate Anon.     May 2014 be all you want it to be (within reason and excluding a change of Government).   


Watcher said...

"Had a stop-over at Parliament to present my submission to the Select Committee considering the Veterans' Support Bill"

But will the outcome be
"meaningful" or "politically acceptable"?

The Veteran said...

Watcher ... clearly we will have to wait and see but, from the tone of the questioning from Govt members, I have to be hopeful.

If you pushed me I would have to say that 'politically' the Opposition members on the Cttee would have more reason to support my submission than the Govt but, as I said, the tone of the questioning from Govt members suggested they recognised the argument had merit.

Noel said...

I wonder if Watcher really meant what is "politically obtainable".
Interesting to see in the RSA submission that they also did not consider the 5 percent increase to cover all those years of inaction as "meaningful".

The Veteran said...

Noel .... I agree re the 5% as wanting and I suspect the Cttee will have some debate around that point.

I would have thought a 10% increase was justified. In saying that I note back in 1991 (long time ago I know) at the time of the 'Mother of all Budgets' there was no AGA applied to the WDP.

That is where the lines on the RSA graph used to develop their point started top move apart.