ACT vertebrae visible in agreement

spineACT promised to give the Nats a spine. And they’ve made a great start.

At least eleven ACT ‘vertebrae’ are visible in the agreement reached with John Key. 

To cynics like John Armstrong who say Rodney won no firm concessions, consider this…

National has signed up to some or all of these eleven points of ACT’s 20 Point Plan for New Zealand:

1.  ACT’s main goal: Close the $500-a- week income gap with Australia by 2025. Now the government’s goal.

2.  Point 1: Cut government waste. Rodney has a hand on the scythe.

3.  Point 2: Cut tax. All centre-right parties endorse United’s 30% rate for both personal and company tax. A good start.

4.  Point 3: Limit local government and cap rates. Rodney in charge.

5.  Point 4: Reduce bureaucracy. Well, not growing it is a start.

6.  Point 5: Cut red tape. With Rodney on scissors, the cuts should be deep and meaningful.

7.  Point 6: Reform the RMA. 

8.  Point 7: More choice in health. Heather to help make more use of private hospitals.

9.  Point 17: Get tough on violent crims. ACT’s 3 Strikes Bill to go forward.

10. Point 18: Review the ETS. ACT wins a stay, and time to convince the public of the high costs and zero environmental benefits.

11. Point 19: Strengthen the constitutional framework.  Rodney’s  Taxpayer Bill of Rights goes forward.

The cynics may say that Key is just stringing its feisty junior partner along.

But John will know the cost of enraging the likes of Rodney Hide, Roger Douglas and John Boscawen.

He knows ACT aren’t poodles seeking baubles. They’re pitbulls with principles. Best keep them well-fed or government could get ugly.

The agreement is a credit to the negotiating skills of both John and Rodney.

The National caucus may have agreed quickly. But not, I suspect, lightly.


It’s the Keyhive (with the ACT 5)

Clark gone. Peters gone. ACT more than doubling its share in a week (as we predicted). Rodney romps in in Epsom (as predicted). Not a bad night at all.

The two most corrupt politicians in New Zealand history have left the building.

And two selfless patriots – Roger Douglas and John Boscawen – have entered.

(I’ve only spoken to ACT’s fifth MP David Garrett once by phone. But his standing in the Sensible Sentencing Trust suggests he’ll be a strong MP.)

The sad thing for me was seeing my friend Stephen Franks not only miss Wellington Central, but also miss getting in on National’s list.

By one lousy place. 

What a waste of a thoughtful and talented man to rank him 60th.

I am inspired to see John Key realise his 35 year goal to be PM. If he looked  euphoric, it’s because he’s been planning for this day since we was 12.  

John is the nice guy he seems. It’s incredible what he’s achieved, both in business and in politics.

If he can run the country the way he’s run his life so far, we’ll be in good shape. 

Let’s hope, with ACT’s support, he can.

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On Sunday programme tomorrow

TVNZ’s Cameron Bennett came to the flat on Thursday to interview me for this week’s Sunday programme.

It was a busy time with the laptop chirping with ACT business, so I hope my distractedness wasn’t too obvious.

My job was to rate Labour’s campaign, while Tom Scott will be rating National’s.

(No pressure!)

Then a panel will be rating our ratings. I understand.

When Cameron asked me to rate Clark’s campaign out of ten, the first word out of my mouth was ‘Two.’ Then for the next take I upgraded her to a six.

My 2/10 was for the way her Slippery John attacks backfired and just made her look like Sleazy Helen.

But taken as a whole, including her surprisingly human performance in the last debate, and strong Labour branding on the ground, I thought a 5 or 6 was fairer.

If I’d been asked, I wouldn’t have ranked the Nats much higher, if at all. I thought the big ad battle was pretty close to a nil-all draw.

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If a child asks a parent for endless lollies and the parent says no, we call them a good parent. If a politician does the same, we call him a heartless right-winger! It’s crazy.

If you keep letting politicians bribe you with your children’s money, you’ll get the government you deserve. 

If Labour and National had adopted ACT’s 1994 tax cut strategy sooner, we’d all be a lot richer now. We pay a very high cost for waiting for timid conservatives to see sense.

Give ACT the numbers tomorrow, and Rodney Hide will make sure National stokes the engine of economic growth and gets us all richer quicker.

No more communism by stealth. No ruinous Emissions Trading Scam. (That’s likely to leave the Greens’ little girl without a job as her mum shovels $3000 a year to the Russians.) 


If ACT’s ‘3 Strikes’ policy had been in place earlier, Emma Agnew, Karl Kuchenbecker, the trio murdered in the Panmure RSA and many other poor souls would still be alive.

William Bell had amassed 102 convictions when he killed Mary Hobson, William Absolum and Wayne Johnson.

Antonie Dixon had been found guilty of 160  offences when he killed James Te Aute.

If ACT had been running things, they would have both gone to prison for life after their third violent assault. Before they killed. Not after.


It’s not just in the crime area where the difference between voting ACT and Labour/National could be the difference between life and death.

ACT’s 20 Point Plan for the economy would boost Kiwis’ pay over time, not by $10 or $50, but by $500 a week.

We’d grow the economy, so we can afford the full year course of Herceptin that richer countries can afford. Under Labour mismanagement, a New Zealand breast cancer sufferer must find $100,000 – or die. 

And the Labour government would rather you died than let a private hospital save your life. That’s not mad. That’s bad.

Other parties say they care. But only ACT has the cure. 


Normally-socialist Sweden has been implementing ACT’s school scholarship system since 1994. 

Today, only one party in Sweden doesn’t support it, and that’s the Communists.

Each parent gets a scholarship from the government for about $100,000 per child – the same as the state spends on your child over thirteen years of schooling. 

You’ll have to spend that money with schools. But you can choose whether they’re public or private schools. Or even home schools. 

The point is, those schools will have to do what you want, not what bureaucrats want. And in Sweden, that’s led to a flourishing of new, smaller, schools and a surge in education standards. 

(And the areas that have benefited most have been the poor areas, where they had no choice but bad schools before.)



Do you want a government of change? Or just a change of government?

If you want real change, you won’t get it from National alone. You’ll need to strengthen the coalition with a spine of principled, experienced, gutsy ACT MPs.

With Rodney Hide ahead in Epsom by 56% to 27%, your ACT party vote will definitely count.
It will have the same power to flush away Helen Clark as a National party vote.
But in improving New Zealand, it will be much more powerful.
Because by adding more ACT MPs to the National/ACT coalition, you’ll be boosting the chances of getting the above results for you, your family and New Zealand.

ACT is peaking at the right time – as usual! If National get 47% of MPs and ACT 4%, Rodney Hide is going to have a lot of clout with John Key.

Once, ACT’s founder had the guts to do what was right for New Zealand, and our modern, energetic society with its wonderful array of choices is his legacy. 

Now it’s your turn.