Wednesday, August 17, 2011

First steps toward tackling endemic youth unemployment

What of the Real Culprits - Speech by Winston Peters

"This week the government took a major step towards cementing a two tier society in place in New Zealand.

The two tiers of our society are of course the rich and the poor or as more commonly phrased, the haves and the have-nots.

This government is made up of rich people.

It governs for rich people, its policies benefit rich people and it regards the rest of the people, who are struggling to live and feed their families, as a "problem."

The first of the poor on the government's hit list are 15-19 year old teenagers who are going to be forcibly trained to work in jobs that do not exist. New Zealand First has always been for education and training, the problem is that unemployment is rife among this group with nearly thirty percent without jobs.

Their dole is going to be stopped and paid to parents or by some other means to ensure they do not waste it on booze and cigarettes. Both these products are illegal for under eighteens to buy now.

So that means if you are 17 years old and not in training you have to ask your mother - or some other person - for several dollars if you want to splash out on something reckless like a Big Mac or, heaven forbid go to a movie.

Again, New Zealand First is all for training and education. For years we have led the field in policies to give young people an allowance while they are training. NZ First is all for teaching young people that liberty is not licence. That the twin of freedom is responsibility.

But we are nervous about a system that defeats itself before it is even started because it is unbelievably stupid to try to train people for jobs that are simply not there.

Do we really need to train Australia's work force?

We have already sent hundreds of thousands of skilled New Zealanders across the Tasman and this new scheme appears as though it has no other logical outcome.

It is all a big public relations hoax of course - something that has been designed by the government's public spin doctoring department to appease certain groups in election year. My challenge to Mr Key is this - when you said in May that you would create 170,000 jobs in four years - what did you base that promise on?

New Zealand First suggested a better form of youth training several weeks ago and we gave a real incentive for employers.

Our idea is to set up crash education courses to ensure teenagers can read and write and then establish as many trade training schemes as possible.

We even have a scheme to help employers. If they give one of these youngsters an apprenticeship, we will pay them the dole the young person receives as an initial subsidy.

Such a scheme would pay for itself as the youngster starts earning a weekly wage and starts paying taxes.

It's what you call a win-win situation.

But going back to the idea of handing out food vouchers and the like, it smacks of the sort of Victorian charity that our ancestors left the Old World to escape.

And don't think for one moment that the government will only target the young.

For many weeks there has been a barrage of propaganda aimed at senior citizens.

Teams of highly paid bleaters are bleating about the cost of superannuation.

They want the age of entitlement lifted and the amount reduced.

Who is going to suddenly employ thousands of 65 or 66 year olds?

Where are the jobs?

It's just another part of the softening up process on the way to poverty.

The government is edging towards the concept that being poor is somehow immoral.

Next minute they will be referring to the ungrateful poor.

John Key is already on record as saying people should be able to live on 300 dollars a week if they budget properly.

We are sure that people in this audience could put him straight on that one.

Only a truly rich person would tell a truly poor person to be thrifty.

It's like Oscar Wilde said..."telling the poor to be thrifty is like telling a starving man not to eat too much!"

What many people don't realize is that the pressing financial problems of our age are all man made. And we can tell you which men made them.

The leaders of irresponsible capitalism - the bankers, the financiers, the futures traders, the currency speculators and the teams of monetary middlemen created this crisis.

It was not caused by anyone in this room. Ordinary people are not guilty.

Yet the pillars of the world of finance have brought the system crashing to its knees because of their insatiable greed and their willingness to do anything to make a fast buck.

Their losses were so great in the Western world that entire governments face bankruptcy baling these people out.

Governments did not believe they could let these firms collapse. So they are pumping money into the system to prop them up.

If they stop, it's been estimated that unemployment in America alone will soar to thirty percent.

It would cause a depression that would make the Great Depression of the 20th century look like a mild recession.

But as already mentioned, the people who bear the brunt of this financial folly are not those who caused it.

Ordinary people lose their jobs, get behind in the mortgage, can't look after the kids - the human cost goes spiraling down.

And at the bottom of the heap all you get told by the smiley face at the top of the heap - is you better budget more carefully.

We want to remind ordinary people there is something you can do about your plight.

You can go and vote.

You can tick a box called New Zealand First and it might be just the best tick you've ever ticked in your life.

We will not stand by and watch ordinary people being trampled on.

We identify with the battlers and the strugglers because that's how we started out in this world.

Help is on the way at the end of November.

Let me give you this assurance. If we win - you win.

I'll repeat it - we win - you win. It's what they call a win/win situation.

And remember, it can only happen if you party vote New Zealand First in November."

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Ben Craven's Speech 08/08/11 Wellington Central Candidate's Forum.

Ladies and gentlemen, members of the public and fellow students - welcome.

My name’s Ben Craven. I’ve put my name forward to be the NZ First candidate for Wellington Central this election.

I’m not a rich kid, I’m living on my overdraft. I don’t have a flash suit either. And I’m a member of the New Zealand First Party.

So what’s going on?

Once upon a time I thought NZ First was, quite simply, a party of pensioners.

When you think NZ First, you think Gold Card and oldies. Probably a few zimmer-frames too.

But I looked a bit deeper. I looked beyond the media coverage and found a party that upholds ideals that resonate well with me.

You see, the reason why there’s quite a few elderly people in NZ First is not because it’s a pensioners party. It’s because they remember a time when New Zealand used to be a great country.

They realise it’s not a great country anymore. Not by a long shot.

They’ve seen assets sales by both Labour and National. They’ve seen the rise of consumer culture and the destruction of community.

Who here even knows their neighbours?

Furthermore, they have seen the divide between the “haves” and the “have nots” grow greater each year.

And have seen consecutive governments fail our young people.

New Zealand First have a vision and long term plan to right these wrongs, to guarantee everyone a fair go and to ensure New Zealand is a country that our generation and the generations after us actually WANT to live in.

So why vote NZ First this election?

NZ First believe in a universal student allowance.

University costs far too much to make it viable for a great number of young people. They’re so worried about the debt that they’d rather go and work a minimum wage job - or better yet, go on the dole.

In investing in YOUR future, we’re investing in this country’s future.

“But wait - there’s more…”

NZ First’s dollar for dollar student loan repayment scheme is set up to help you guys.

The way it works is pretty simple. For every dollar of your student loan that you pay back whilst in New Zealand, we’ll match it.

What’s the point having a huge student loan scare all of our graduates overseas? The figures might look good on paper, but it’s money this country will never see again.

NZ First believe in helping graduates enter the workforce and prosper.

Some sectors want to ban graduates leaving the country until they’ve paid off their student loans!

We at NZ First do not believe this country should be a graduate-prison. But a place where graduates actually WANT to live.

Make no mistake, unlike other parties with their sectional interests, New Zealand First is a party for ALL of New Zealand, ALL New Zealanders, and ALL of those people who call New Zealand home.

We don’t give a stuff about David Letterman. Who here has seen Mr Key’s video?

In it, our National Prime Minister, the “Right Honourable” John Key, makes a mockery of this country and its inhabitants.

If he’s going to fob us off in order to prostrate himself in front of a US media mogul, then what chance does this country have?

Where’s this brighter future he guaranteed us?

Or should we assume that his policies for his contemptible countrymen will merely echo his personal sentiments?

NZ First are a party that take New Zealand, and New Zealand interests, seriously.

Who and what are Mr Key’s interests?


Make no mistake - National and their YoungNats are parading the right slogan - they’re all “Key People!”

Through Mr Key, the US see an opportunity to fleece us all.

You’ve seen it all over the news. The US are up against the ropes, they’re desperately in need of some easy cash and they see us as an easy target.

And why wouldn’t they?

Instead of resisting their advances, what has Mr Key done?

He’s committed more of our people into the atrocious US-led war in Afghanistan and opened up down-town Wellington to the US Marines!

So what’s this love fest all about?

It’s about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and the erosion of New Zealand’s economic sovereignty.

The Australians already have such an agreement with the US. Now they’ve got American tobacco companies on their backs for trying to wean their population off smoking.

Yes, that’s right. Tobacco firm Philip Morris and others are looking to sue the Australian government under this Free Trade Agreement.

Now the US have Pharmac in their sights.

The fat-cat American drug companies will leech the life out of this country with ludicrously expensive medicines, your average Kiwi will be out of pocket and John “the smiling assassin” Key will get a pat on the back.
This government has shown us that they want to divide and conquer.

They’ve been flip-flopping their policies like a dying fish.

Just look at VSM.

Originally National explicitly said they were not going to support VSM, now they’ve done a great U-turn.

As students, OUR community and OUR representation has been all but gone to the dogs.

NZ First believe in preserving and fostering community. We want to maintain and uphold the values of democracy and for that reason we are explicitly against VSM.

This election it is imperative that we put NZ First.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Young people get a bad rap in New Zealand and it is undeserved. New Zealand First believes investment in our youth is investment in all or our futures. Our youth will face up to the future if they are given the tools and opportunity. We have an exciting policy for students, but not everyone is made for university. New Zealand First is embarking on a ground-br4eaking programme, new learning, new trades, new apprenticeships, new skills and new competencies for the digital age. You know we look after our grandparents, but we are going to look after our grandchildren as well.


Technologies constantly change, but the need for skilled adaptable people stays the same. New Zealand First will pull back on the practice of bringing in workers from overseas, while untrained New Zealanders stand in dole queues. Our long term economic plan invests in our manufacturing sector to provide more jobs and most importantly, apprenticeships. But it doesn’t end there. We will consult manufacturers about the skills they require to complete on world markets. And we will start training people in these skills. Many young people have asked to make trades training a condition of receiving the unemployment benefit. New Zealand First agrees. Basic reading, writing and numerical skills will be included. Skills levels will be lifted and employers will be given incentives for ‘on the job training;. We will increase the number of places available at polytechnic trade training.


Student debt amounts to billions of dollars, and it has to be sorted out. We will face up to it before it inflicts more damage on yet another generation of young New Zealanders. We will introduce a scheme where Government makes a matching dollar-for-dollar payment on student debt for students staying and working in New Zealand. So if a student with a student loan of $20,000 pays back $10,000, the Government would match that sum to extinguish the debt and remove a big incentive for young Kiwis to go overseas. A generation of our young Kiwis are effectively economic exiles because of student debt. We want them to bring their stills and ideas home. In the long run this will save New Zealand money.

Monday, August 1, 2011

NZF Youth Report - This Is Our Time

"Ten months ago I came before you with a vision. A vision for the future - of our party and of our Nation.

Today, I am happy to report that our Youth Section has gone from strength to strength.

We have expanded and rolled out on university campuses across the country.

We have experienced surges in support produced by our online campaigns on facebook and other digital media.

Most hearteningly, a recent Horizon poll indicated that 14.5% of first time voters were intending to vote for New Zealand First.

But the real story isn't just in the number of 'likes' or 'friends' we have on facebook, abstract polling data, or how many campuses we've arrived on.

It's in the reactions we're getting - and how they've changed over the last two years.

18 months ago, when we started doing this, NZF Youth seemed something of an oxymoron.

The best public reaction we received were amused references on some of the more effervescent
right-wing blogs to the emergence of a fanatical "Winston Youth".

Well we're here alright.

A year ago, there were small flurries of interest. Excited whispers that Barbarossa - asleep in the mountains - was soon to awake and return to his Nation in its hour of need.

For a select few, anything seemed possible and we struck sparks of inspiration wherever and whenever we spoke.

At last, we said, we had a genuine alternative to the other big two major parties - a way forward and a vision.

Today, when we talk to Youth, the reaction is easily summated:




Young people know increasingly what we stand for, and want to stand with us.

They are hearing our message.

They realise that we stand on the edge of oblivion, they see how close we are to chaos;
and they - along with the rest of the Nation - are beginning to remember why they NEED us.

Our generation is feeling the pinch created by thirty years of neglect for the things which nurture and foster a healthy youth.

Which turn children to contributing members of society - here - and which give and guarantee a productive position and stake in the Nation.

In 1989 Labour's Education Minister Phil Goff abolished free tertiary education.

The previous National Government abolished apprenticeships, started moves to scrap school-C and introduced NCEA.

Our present overlords have presided over a shameful increase in youth unemployment to somewhere around twenty per cent.

A fifth of those willing & able to seek work my age are unemployed, and the wage-gap between New Zealand and the Developed World continues to increase.

Small wonder 24% of Kiwis under 30 are intending on leaving the country to seek better fortunes in those well-renowned "greener" pastures (or coal-mines) across the Tasman.

Don't get me wrong - we recognise and enthusiastically endorse the OE as a Kiwi rite of passage; and as a valuable way of accumulating human capital.

However, there is quite clearly something sick in our society when OE comes to stand not for Overseas Experience but rather Overseas Exodus.

So, what will New Zealand First do. What panacea do we have to cure the Nation's ills.

It starts with Youth. With giving us not just the opportunity for a stake in the Nation, but allowing us the opportunity to help build it.

You've all seen the Student Army down in Christchurch - that's the kind of potential and good old-fashioned Kiwi grit we intend to bring to the table.

Last Convention, also held down in Christchurch, we passed remits to grant young people seeking to increase their human capital a Universal Student Allowance - as we once enjoyed.

During our previous term in Parliament, we fought successfully for more apprenticeships, and abolished Youth Rates.

Recently, we have announced plans for a dollar-for-dollar student debt reduction scheme that's proved wildly popular across the country.

Today, these gains are under threat. ACT are campaigning heavily on reinstating a separate Youth minimum wage - and calling everyone up to their mid-20s "youth".

National have sought to cap tertiary student numbers, and cut university funding.

This government has also seen fit to cut and curtail funding and personel for our Defence Forces - which provide a valuable set of life-skills and pathway to prosperity for many - and often at-risk - youth.

Further, they have cut funding to over 2,000 early childcare educational services, and are moving to abandon requirements for educational providers to be certified, qualified teachers.

Again, these are not signs of health - and still far less signs of wealth.

Rather, they are the signs of a fundamentally sick society.

Earlier I stated that Youth are hearing our message.

That message is simple: Help is on its way!"

- Speech to 2011 NZF Convention