A Sunk Cost
The first of two flag referenda has begun. Since the money’s been spent you might as well vote. One thing’s certain, if this one fails no sane Prime Minister will give you the chance again for a very long time.
Our Thoughts and Sympathy
This edition of Free Press is dedicated to the victims of the Paris terror attacks and their friends and families.
Joie de Vivre
Thugs in Paris have managed to take lives, but they cannot defeat the joy of life celebrated with such diversity in a free and open society. That must deeply annoy the thugs, but they still threaten us.
Good and Bad Economists - ACT exists in part to advocate sensible economics from the cross benches. ACT starts from Henry Hazlitt’s Economics in One Lesson: “The bad economist sees only what strikes the eye; the good economist also looks beyond.
Exceptional Culture - The All Blacks’ back-to-back Rugby World Cup victories are just a small part of an exceptional period of dominance. Only the Australian Cricket team and a guy who played pool in the 1990s have ranked number one in the world longer than the current All Blacks. Up until 2004 the All Blacks had won 75 per cent of all games, three wins for every loss. Now they are at 86 per cent, a staggering six wins for every loss. They are big and they are talented, yes, but it’s their culture that’s exceptional.
Kerre McIvor Weighs in on RWC Bill
Remember when letting pubs open for the Rugby World Cup was going to destroy society, especially in poor rural areas like Opononi? Kerre reports: “The husband and I joined a group of about 60 at the Opononi pub. All ages were there and women outnumbered men. The only suggestion of riotous behaviour was when a group of nanas sitting at a table showed vocal appreciation as Sonny Bill ran on to the field.”
David Seymour has entered a Bill into the ballot that would allow mentally competent adults with a terminal illness diagnosed to be fatal within six months, or a grievous and irremediable condition in an advanced state of decline the choice to ask a doctor (who has agreed to play a role under the Bill) to provide or administer the means to end their life at a time of their choosing. You can read the full details here: www.lifechoice.org.nz
We Picked It
Dakang have pulled out of an Overseas Investment Office application to buy $42 million of dairy farms in Northland. The most capital-starved region in the country just lost $42 million. No amount of government programs in Northland can substitute for a place to do business. As ACT has said, we are now paying the price for ad hoc departures from the rule of law such as blocking the Lochinver sale.
Stating Our Values
Serial migrator Oliver Hartwich of the New Zealand Initiative has lived in Germany, England, Australia and New Zealand. He observes that all countries put migrants through the wringer with endless forms before they can become residents and citizens, but New Zealand omits one that Australia requires – Hartwich is hardly a fan of bureaucracy, but points out that we don’t require new immigrants to sign a Values Statement.
New Zealanders Watch Rugby at Pub – World Keeps Turning
The first few games have been watched in pubs across the country. It turns out New Zealanders are not a nation of irresponsible orangutans after all. We’re thoroughly decent people who know how to enjoy ourselves, then go to work. The only thing that should be banned is the All Black’s wobbly start against Argentina.