Sunday, March 15, 2015


It may come as small surprise to some but neither the Vet or Mrs Vet were voting delegates when the Northland Electorate of the National Party selected Mark Osborne as their candidate to contest the by-election.   While I had met Mark on a number of occasions he was very much an unknown quantity to me although I was aware that John Carter rated him very highly.

As it happened and with the Branch Chair otherwise engaged I was invited to chair a meeting for Mark in Paihia a couple of days ago.    I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.   Mark is a big man of the late great Don Oliver variety as befitting his record as a champion bench press weight lifter.    He comes across as forceful, articulate, knowledgeable and sincere and above all, as a passionate Northlander, committed to helping us unlock the economic potential of the region.     He knows the electorate like the back of his hand and commented that in his job as the Assets Manager for the FNDC he drives around 1,000 plus kilometers each week and is familiar with each and every pothole in the Far North. In a previous life he worked in the freezing works at Moerewa, is a chartered accountant and he and his wife own and manage a successful business in Doubtless Bay.  

At 42 he has age on his side (unlike someone else).   He doesn't talk in  cliches (unlike someone else).
He will do the hard yards as a local MP (unlike someone else).  

At the end of the meeting I received unsolicited comment that Mark was everything and more that they wanted as their next MP.

I see that the Mathew Hooten, poor little rich boy from the uber right, reckons that it's a travesty that Northland is going to see 10 bridges on State Highways upgraded to double lane.    Well this Northlander for one is sick and tired of JAFAs bemoaning any investment outside of their version of Sodom and Gomorrah.    We deserve it and if it takes a by-election to bring home the bacon then it's a win for us.  

Peters meanwhile blathers on about turning Northport into a container terminal at zero cost to the taxpayer ... clearly Ann Martin, sometime strong Social Creditor and now his Party President has managed to convince Winston that the A + B theorem was right after all.    And I see too that the OAP from St Mary's Bay is on record as advocating the transfer of $300 million from the 'Roads of National Significance' to help pay for Mayor Brown's train-set.    Peters is refusing to say what roading projects would be canned.    He needs to front up and spell out where the cuts will be made.   Northlanders have a right to know if the Puhoi to Wellsford SH1 upgrade (our economic highway) is one of those projects at risk..  Peters is a true JAFA indeed.  


PM of NZ said...

"is familiar with each and every pothole in the Far North"

I wouldn't class potholes as being assets, but since he's got a list of them, one might ask why hasn't FNDC fixed them?

Adolf Fiinkensein said...


Sounds to me as though you have never been north of Wellsford.

When I returned, after twenty years absence, to the valley of my childhood, the potholes were all in the same place.

Kind of comforting.

The Veteran said...
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The Veteran said...

PM ... and neither would he and fixing potholes ain't his job. The point he was making is that he knows Northland intimately (unlike another candidate who thought Waipu was part of the electorate).

The state of the roads in Northland, both State Highways and secondary roading, is a continuing problem for us. Long distances and a scattered and sparse population (particularly in the west), exacerbated by tropical weather bombs, and contractors are always going to be playing catch-up.

PM of NZ said...

Vet and AF, Yes, in the past few years I've often been well north of Wellsford. And the roading state remains dire with all manner of unsatisfactory patchwork repairs. When I regularly travel on SH2 and SH1 from Tararua to Northland it's very easy to see that Northland roads take a low priority.

gravedodger said...

Thankyou Vet, some information there that should be front and center of any MSM effort but alas they are far too busy trying to create news and build up their relevance by feeding and spruiking the old failure who promised much and now is desperate to find a last hurrah.
Just more evidence of the glaring failure of our current electoral system, would the prick have made this play had he had to resign his list spot to run, I think not.