Action you can take

At one time New Zealand was seen overseas as leading the world by introducing policies that benefited the average citizen. Now it is far behind most OECD countries when it comes to measures relating to labour laws, consumer rights, housing, social wellbeing and environmental protection. Successive Governments have relied on inflation, immigration and rising property prices to artificially boost the economy and have created a $200 billion infrastructure deficit by failing to invest for future growth.

Businesses, farmers and wealthy people use lobbying, political party donations and other means to get the decisions they want from public servants and political parties. They will continue to do this unless substantial reforms are made.

They want to keep government taxes, spending and regulations to a minimum so that they can make as much money as possible without regard to the impact on the community and future generations. They want to capitalise the profits and socialise the losses. This means that the average taxpayer ends up paying for any problems that arise and not those who created the problems or those who take advantage of a crisis to get taxpayer handouts.

New Zealand has no set of objectives and minimum standards that Governments and the Public Service must adhere to and there is a lack of accountability and transparency regarding the outcomes of Government spending.

Elections are becoming increasingly irrelevant because those with money run the country for their own benefit. They have conned people into believing that New Zealand is clean and green, 100% pure, corruption free and a great place to bring up children etc.   This has created a great deal of complacency and if it is to be reversed and the country run for the benefit of all citizens and future generations, then you and others will need to take some of the following actions:

– Use social media and write letters to the editors of newspapers and magazines to let people know about the following:

How the lack of regulations on lobbying and political party donations ensures that businesses, farmers and  those with plenty of money usually get whatever decisions they want from public servants and political parties.

How the country is being run by a professional managerial class of public servants and politicians for their benefit, so the needs of the average person and future generations are being largely ignored.

– When submissions are called for on a public issue that is of concern to you, prepare a submission and point out that those who stand to make money have far greater resources and incentives to get what they want than the average person who is concerned about the impacts on the community.

– Request a copy of a Minister’s diary that will show the lobbying and other activities in a policy area that you have a particular interest in.

– Request annual details of political party donations and carry out research on those who made payments to determine who purchased lobbying access, special favours, law changes etc.

– Compile a list of journalists who work for newspapers, magazines and broadcasters who you think would be interested in writing about new information you can send them. Also find the email addresses for news and current affairs programmes on television and on radio.

– Arrange a petition that can be presented to a Select Committee of Parliament. This could be done through Action Station.

– Make an appointment to see your local Member of Parliament so that you can express your concerns.

– Obtain from Parliament the names and addresses of Members of Parliament and then create an emailing list on your computer so that you can easily send an email about an issue that illustrates your concerns to everyone on the list at the same time.

– Arrange a publicity stunt that will provide the news media with a photo opportunity.

– Join a group or charity that is involved with issues that are of greatest concern to you and try to get them to create publicity events for news releases and to advocate on these issues.

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