National Party policy announcement on roads and stuff

Transcript: National Party policy announcement on roads – 8 July, 2020

 

Muller: Good afternoon everybody. Thank you for coming.

Reporter 1: Is Hamish Walker a racist?

Muller: Hang on… you haven’t even said good afternoon to me yet.

Reporter 1: Good afternoon Mr Muller. Is Hamish Walker a racist?

Muller: Before I get into whether National Party members are racists, or not, I’d like to just read from a prepared statement.

Reporter 2: Is it about Hamish Walker being racist?

Muller: No. It’s about roads.

All Reporters: Oh… stink…

Muller: This afternoon the National Party is proud to announce our plans to build a 4 lane expressway between Rollerston and Ashburton. This will be a vital transportational link between Christchurch and the rest of the South Island. It will include new bridges across the…

Reporter 1 (whispering): Man this is boring…

Reporter 2 (whispering): I know… this man is boring…

Reporter 3: He’s flat like 3-day old lemonade.

Muller: …Ashburton… pardon?

Reporter 3: …what?

Muller: You said something about lemonade?

Reporter 3: …um… yes… I was… I was talking about Beyoncé?

Muller: Who?

Reporter 3: Beyoncé

Muller: Who’s Beyonce? Is she in the Greens?

Reporter 2: No… it’s Beyoncé.. and she’s a singer, actor and media icon.

Reporter 1: She used to be in Destiny’s Child.

Reporter 3: She’s married to Jay Z.

Muller: Jay Z – is he the guy that runs the pub quiz in Mt Maunganui?

All Reporters (face palming): Oh god.

Muller: Um… I feel like we are off track a little here. I’m here to talk about roads. Can we talk about roads?

Reporter 1: How come you don’t know who Beyonce is? Are you racist?

Muller: No. I’m not racist.

Reporter 3: Then why do you only have only Pakeha New Zealanders as your shadow cabinet?

Muller: I chose the best people for the job. Simple as that.

Reporter 3 (confused): …pardon? Michael Woodhouse??

Muller: He’s a fantastic. He’s been holding the government to account. Now… can we talk about…

Reporter 1: Woodhouse made up an imaginary homeless guy. This was jumped on by the media as proof forced quaranteen wasn’t working.

Muller: …and it isn’t.

Reporter 2: Isn’t what? True?

Muller: No… yes… um… what?

Reporter 2: Did Woodhouse pluck this homeless guy out of a hole in his dirty politics?

Muller: Look… I’m here to talk about roads. Roads anyone? Does anyone want to talk about roads?

All Reporters (together): No.

Muller: Umm… but… that’s not fair. This is a serious policy announcement. Why won’t you talk about what I want to talk about?

Reporter 3: Racism?

Reporter 1: Patriarchy?

Reporter 2: Political ruthlessness masquerading as utter incompetence?

Muller: Right then…. we’re done here. I’m off to the Ilam RSA for my next policy speech. At least those guys want to hear about my roads.

Reporter 3: And your racism…

Muller: And my rac… oh for fu…

 

Press Conference Ends

I’m Todd Muller and I like it

Helloy…

My name is Todd Muller and I am the leader of the National Party of New Zealand.

Many people come up to me on the street and ask me who I am. I’m often walking through Tauranga, or in a mall in suburban Auckland, or maybe even a farmers’ market in Morrinsville and people just come right up and ask, “Who are you and why are you touching my cabbages?”

This is not unusual for a leader of the opposition.

Firstly, I think it is incredibly important to point out that the National Party has a plan. Our plan has been in the development stages for months – long before I rolled Soymun Brudges (*thanks Hoots!). If you were to liken it to, say, a Holden being done up in someone’s garage, the National Party is the guy under the car who’s all greasy and yelling to his son, “get me the damn socket wrench before this drips transmission fluid down my throat!”

We have a plan, and that’s the plan… and what a plan.

Now… to the politics of the day.

The country is currently reeling from the twin disasters of Covid-19 and the Labour Party led by Winston Peters.

The Prime Minister and her cabinet have completely lost control of the situation. There are people coming into the country from all over the world fully diseased and ready to spread their disease all over the country. Michael Woodhouse even told me that every person coming into New Zealand is being forced to sneeze into jars. What they are doing with these jars I shudder to think.

And apart from letting far too many people back into the country, the government are not letting enough people into the country. The government should be opening up the borders, not shutting them down. The economy has been hamstrung for far too long. Letting more people in to New Zealand will give the economy a super-charged boost. Like the kind of boost you get if your big brother is giving you a leg up to jump the fence at the school pool (I never did that, mind you… but I heard other people did it and opened the gate for me).

Well… that’s about it from me. Remember, if you see me walking down the street do come up and say, “hi!” and I’m sure I can assess your cabbages.

Kindest regards,

Todd xxx

Simon Bridges and all the money

INTERVIEWER: Welcome back. A recent leak of opposition leader Simon Bridges’ travel expenses has expanded into full-blown forensic inquiry to discover the source of the Newshub story by Tova O’Brien. Joining me now to talk about his expenses and the inquiry is National Party leader Simon Bridges. Good morning Mr Bridges.

SIMON BRIDGES: Morning.

INTERVIEWER: You were pretty angry when your expenses were leaked?

BRIDGES: Absolutely. I was very angry. I’ve been working incredibly hard going around New Zealand talking to New Zealanders about New Zealanding.

INTERVIEWER: Do you have to travel in a Crown limousine? Surely there are cheaper ways of getting around than using your free ride?

BRIDGES: Look… I don’t think so. I think New Zealanders want to see their politicians turning up to cake stalls and charity baton relays rested and relaxed after a long journey. It’s very hard to cut a ribbon or successfully cradle a baby if you’re all stressed out from riding in a Jazz or, god forbid, a Prius.

INTERVIEWER: I do understand that, but don’t you think it looks a bit flashy, a bit over the top to be spending $900 per day when you could get something much, much cheaper.

BRIDGES: Well… it could be worse. I could have included the Thai foot masseuse for an extra $250 a day, but I didn’t include her except on a couple of dozen of the trips.

INTERVIEWER: So you were pretty outraged when your expenses were leaked to the Newshub political editor?

BRIDGES: Absolutely outraged.

INTERVIEWER: Disgusted.

BRIDGES: Totally disgusted.

INTERVIEWER: So you’re absolutely outraged and totally disgusted by someone releasing your travel expenses…

BRIDGES: Completely.

INTERVIEWER: …just a couple of days before they were going to be made public anyway?

BRIDGES: Yes. It is outrageous that the National Party only had 20 minutes or so to come up with our lines for the media. I’ve been working extremely hard, travelling the country talking to New Zealanders. I mean, face it, that line isn’t very exciting, but it’s all we could come up with after we were ambushed by Tova.

INTERVIEWER: So then, what’s your plan? What are you wanting to happen from here?

BRIDGES: I think the most sensible thing that has happened during this whole time is the Speaker of the House announcing his forensic inquiry into the leak. We need to get to the bottom of whoever has undertaken this threat to New Zealand’s democracy.

INTERVIEWER: Do you ever wonder to yourself if you’d just said, “yeah, we spent that money talking to New Zealanders,” and left it at that, then we wouldn’t be having this conversation right now and the New Zealand taxpayer wouldn’t be spending several hundred thousand dollars trawling through National Party emails to try to find the person who wants your job?

BRIDGES: (extremely long pause) Um… (another long pause) …um… ahh… (more pauses) I…. ahh… I don’t know…?

INTERVIEWER: Mr Bridges… thanks very much…

BRIDGES: Hang on… is that it?

INTERVIEWER: We’ve run out of time.

BRIDGES: But… I… that interview makes me look terrible.

INTERVIEWER: I think this whole debacle makes you look terrible.

BRIDGES: Hey! Aren’t you meant to be an impartial journalist?

INTERVIEWER: No. I’m a fake entity on a satirical blog post. I can be anything I want. Thanks very much for your time Mr Bridges.

MyThinks on the government’s response to the strike

Greetings.

After what could only be described as a celebration of the profession yesterday, today was definitely a plummet earthwards in comparison.

What annoyed me the most this morning was listening to the last couple of minutes of the Morning Report interview with Chris Hipkins. Our Minister of Education, long thought of as a wonderful juxtaposition to the Hekia years when a new language developed where one could speak for minutes, using a multitude of extraneous vocabularies to, ultimately say nothing, Hipkins has begun to speak in political tongues. Listen for yourself:

https://www.radionz.co.nz/audio/remote-player?id=2018658315

Hipkins says we teachers are being offered more and he’s, “acknowledging our frustrations” but ultimately he said he would prefer we accept the offer and not propose more industrial action. I got the feeling he thought we are being unreasonable.

The government has begun to tell us, tell everyone, to be patient. So many different groups are asking for similar settlements. Unfortunately for Labour, a decade or so of National-led education policy based on nothing other than the thoughts of a couple of bloggers and an MP given a free ride in a safe blue seat, now have to clean up the mess.

The clean up will run into the billions. When the “sound fiscal managers” in the National Party wreck something, they really clog all the works with a plethora of spanners. We now have a system where teachers are dropping like flies and young people are seeing this and saying, “bugger that for a game of skittles,” and heading off into less stressful occupations like forestry, accountancy, baking etc.

Addressing the marching teachers outside parliament, Jacinda Adern said that revolution takes time. I suppose the Rome wasn’t built-in a day argument makes sense because it took National a decade to destroy education. However, doing nothing and promising everything isn’t good enough. Perhaps, perhaps if the Labour-led coalition offered us some kind of timeline clearly showing how they intend to fix our profession, then maybe we’d go along with it.

Telling us to be patient and then not giving us a timeframe doesn’t wash.

When the next vote comes to my inbox, I’ll be voting for two more days of action.

Because if they don’t fix education now, then that’s it. We’ll lose it all and end up like those third-world public education systems in England and the United States.

Mr B

Post Script: Here’s a link to the coverage of the South Canterbury action.

Strike!

Last evening I made the fatal mistake of telling my son that, “tomorrow we’re sleeping in.” This turned out to be taken as a reverse challenge, so I have been awake since five. Eventually my puku instructed me to get up and get organised around six o’clock. Breakfast and a bit of a tidy up later and it was time to head into Timaru for our protest.

I’ll let the pictures do the talking, but some highlights include:

  1. My son leading the chant and, on several occasions, getting it going again after it had petered out.
  2. The hundreds who turned out to the rally.
  3. The number of non-teachers (parents, school support staff, principals, and others) who tuned out with us in solidarity.
  4. The overwhelming support from the motorists who drove past the march, or who we held up at the lights while our group continued to cross long after the green man had packed his bags and headed off.

Although there was wonderful support from the people of Timaru as we headed down the main road to the local MP’s office, there was a moment that highlighted the battle we are having with a certain sector of society. While we stood together on our street corner chanting an elderly gentleman turned the corner and gave us the fingers.

Apart from delivering his withering hand gesture straight out of 1973, this silver-haired chap is a prime example if the type person we really need to convince. I have no doubt he believes we are complete slackers skiving on a street corner corrupting our children into the union. He’ll argue teachers don’t deserve any more money because they are already very well remunerated and they get 12 weeks holiday a year.

I’m not going to dismantle this aged villain here other than to wonder whether he takes his full pension or whether, out of principle, he has forgone it because he doesn’t need the money…

Today I marched for the profession. We are in crisis because young people don’t want to join our profession or the manage to make it through their degree or diploma only to give it away after a few years. For too long we have been denegrated by this sector of society (One wonders whether the denegration would have happened to a profession where the majority of workers were men. Just saying…).

It will be interesting to see what the government come back to us with. I don’t care about the money. I just want more time to teach and be a dad.

I’ll leave the last word to my son: “I thought this was going to be a bit boring, but it was heaps of fun!”

Mahi pai e tama. Kua tae te wā.