Monday, February 3, 2014


Watching ACT during the last week has been a bit like viewing CCTV footage of a fog scene on a motorway.

Brash was a disaster upon a disaster that saw a reborn Hide hung drawn and quartered for taking his squeeze to the other side of the world in an apparent misuse of Parliamentary perks he had employed in his own career as a major aid by engaging in relentless pursuit.

An old Nat warhorse albeit a bit suspect as a winner was given the task of winning? Epsom including what turned out to be a destructive cup of tea that only served to resurrect a stinking carcass many had hoped would be left to the worms.

Legend in her own mind Heather Roy attempted to save her party only to see her efforts create another hole below the waterline, and founding or was it foundering father, Sir Roger Douglas made strange efforts in support that only increased the volume of water being taken in.

Through all this, one apparent good man, a minister in his first term, a fundraiser well above average, with a national profile seen by most as reassuring and a safe pair of hands has kept the virtually destroyed vessel afloat.
Now in the latest twist of a nose to tail crash unfolding, two unknowns outside a coterie of the remnant insiders have been tasked to get the wreck to a beach, effect repairs and set sail towards an election later this year.
Good luck with that.

When the Association of Consumers and Taxpayers was launched to respond to the populist path adopted by Spud Bolger in apparent abandonment of National Party principles by sidelining Richardson's moves to consolidate the work begun By Douglas to reform and reshape the countries economic basics in moves to enable entry to the 21st century in a form that would have been far more advantageous than what has emerged, I was to say the least, more than mildly interested.
Derek Quigly's involvement only heightened that interest.

A Public meeting was held in Carterton in the leadup to the 1996 GE featuring an unknown Rodney Hide, listed as  finance spokesman.
That Man, very short, overweight, dressed in an appalling suit had the audience in his hands as he iterated the ACT fundamentals as he viewed them, as a path to stable economics in the governance of the country, along with a political philosophy that resonated with my own 
In addition to having known Quigley from his days in YFC in the Sixties, I had known Hides family in Rangiora in a previous life so with those connections and what Rodney said in his address I became a believer.

Right now my faith is being tested to breaking as I am yet to be convinced of the wisdom of completely cutting the ties to the history of ACT by severing any remaining role for Boscowan, as it appears the Board selections of Whyte as Leader and Seymor as Epsom Candidate have precipitated.
I am smart enough to recognise my historical connections and support at the ballot box for ACT are minuscule in what will happen to the party over the next maybe nine months.
It will reveal as either inspired or inept, my wish is the former so I wish the philosophers every success.
To John Boscowan, thankyou for keeping the hulk afloat to allow a repair and relaunch, as for my possible support here so far distant and remote from Jaffaland, I wish to await a convincing move towards a resurection before any decision can be reached.

Oh and please, forget the canary yellow jackets!


pdm said...

Disclosure: - ACT has had my Party Vote since MMP began but I am not a party member - nor am I a member of any other political party.

Under Richard Prebble, with people like Stephen Franks etc in support I considered the party a valuable - no essential - part of Parliament. It is a shame that some of the people who made ACT so effective have chosen to move on.

I do not know anything about the two people chosen to lead the party and like a lot of people I will watch their progress with interest. One thing I do know is that Parliament is already overweight with academics who have never had a proper job.

Therefore I find it very strange that a known name and a proven performer like John Boscowan was dumped. Make that very strange and perhaps someone may care to enlighten us on who the ACT Board members are.

Shane Ponting said...

I party vote ACT for the policies not the personalities - haven't heard of them changing in any distinctive way recently so I shall continue to vote for them.

smttc said...

Disclosure - ACT has had my party vote for three elections because to date our local National MP has been relatively safe and I live in the same constituency as PDM.

For me, I agree with Shane, it does not matter whether you like the personalities, your party vote should be a matter of principle regardless of what you do with your electorate vote. And long may ACT rule Epsom.

Angry Tory said...

A party vote for any party other than ACT is a vote for communism. Hell, under Banks, a party vote for ACT was also a vote for communism - it's pathetic how proud Banksy turned out to be of his state house upbringing and his state school education, Thankfully Whyte has none of those disqualifying disadvantages.

There's a great talk where Whyte lays out why bludgers shouldn't get the vote - and a bludger is of course anyone who is a non-nett taxpayer! Yes from all those state schools teachers and the association of taxpayer-paid medical specialists down the the child-abusing been bludger - none of 'em.

As Jamie put it: income is a Zipf distribution so the median income is well below the mean income.

If Whyte can stick to a few real policies like that -
most of all, CUTTING THE TOP TAX RATE as a means towards ending dependency, ending state ownership, ending state control and stay well away from stupid spreadsheets and TV stunts

then ACT really has a change again.

if not, if he gets into drug legalisation and building statues of satan and republics with a written constitution etc -then we'd all be better off voting for Colin Craig.

Angry Tory said...

Talk is here:

(also great argument against flat tax rates, because they're still progressive: we need at least caped taxes, ideally citizenship taxes (say 10,000 per citizen per year. Don't pay? no vote).

More realistically, no-one* pays any tax on income over 100K could be an excellent ACT policy

(*except "rich prick" state employees, who would have 100 an 100% marginal tax rate at say 100K)

Edward the Confessor said...

Sinner is so excited by this latest Great Whyte Hope his Mum will need to change his pants.

Whyte's idiot views are already coming back to haunt him and he's compromising on his principles at at amazing rate of knots. Hilarious.

Psycho Milt said...

One thing I do know is that Parliament is already overweight with academics who have never had a proper job.

Actually, Parliament seems to me to be more overweight with ignoramuses who have strong opinions but no reasoning ability.

Also: once you've forged a successful career for yourself in university-level teaching and research, feel free to come to the conclusion it isn't a "proper job." Until then, don't.