Why not sell the lot?

August 8, 2008

As usual Jim Hopkins’ column is worth reading in full but here’s a taste:

By then, Kiwibank will be but a memory. But while it’s not – and with the enviable pageantry of the Beijing Festival of Steroids about to begin – let us pose a heretical question. Why not sell Kiwibank, for crying out loud? It’s not like it’s Auckland Airport or anything. It’s just a bank! And if they did sell it they might have a closing-down sale first, with specials on money – 25 per cent off $100 bills; two $10s for the price of one, that sort of thing.

Come to think of it, why stop at Kiwibank? Let’s sell the Post Office too. And the ACC. And the b****y Corrections Department. Yes, especially the b****y Corrections Department.

Couldn’t run a cellphone network in a prison, that lot. So sell ’em!!! Sell ’em all!! Sell ’em to the Chinese. They’ve already got all the power poles and wires and substations and meter boxes in the whole of flaming Wellington!!!! And they didn’t need a secret agenda to buy those!! Just a nice, friendly gummint ready to cut a deal.

So let’s sell the entire bureaucracy to Mr Phing Ah Me Bob from Hong Kong. Then he’ll be his own best customer.

EFA rules ok – yeah right

August 1, 2008

A Tui billboard  in Tauranga may breach the Electoral Finance Act.

It says: When Winston says no he means no. Yeah right.

The billboard is in the Tauranga electorate Winston Peters is desperate to win, and the Electoral Commission told the Herald it would write to brewers Tui saying it could be “election advertising” against him.

If that’s breaching the Act ,what about the giant wrap around bill board I noticed on a building on the corner of Albert and (I think) Customs Streets? It had a counter showing how much NZ profit goes from overseas banks each day.

It was bright green with an anti foreign-ownership message so I thought it was a political hoarding until I looked again and saw it was for Kiwi Bank.

My first impression  was that it was a political message rather than a commercial one so given NZ First and Greens are strongly against foreign ownership of NZ assets might this ad persaude people to vote for one of them or against other parties with more sensible views on investment?

Then there’s the ad which shows a couple of blokes driving across a paddock in a red ute. There’s a bump, they stop, get out and realise they’ve hit a bull. The driver turns to his passenger and says “Should’ve bought a blue one.”

It’s advertising Ford utes but there is a subliminal political message there too. It could be seen as words or graphics which persuade people to vote for or against a party.

But the EFA isn’t that stupid. Yeah right.

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