A Million Views

This week, an ACT MP had a video viewed a million times, worldwide. It was James McDowall swearing allegiance to the Queen in Parliament. He swore in English and Cantonese, his wife’s language. Hong Kong legislators are forced to go to Beijing and swear allegiance to the Chinese State in Mandarin. (They generally prefer Cantonese). That James freely swore allegiance to an independent head of state wasn’t lost on Hong Kongers and Taiwanese.

Also Swearing Allegiance To The Queen

Free Press is distraught to learn Ricardo Menéndez March has no principles. We were awed when the new Green MP said he would not swear allegiance to the Queen. We assumed he realised that this would mean no parliamentary salary. For $163,000 a year, he swore allegiance. It never ceases to amaze us how commercial the hard left can be when it comes to their own bank accounts.

A Thought-Provoking Speech

David Seymour’s Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne has been critically praised. “It was a great speech, well crafted, analytical and inspirational. It made me proud to have hung in with the ACT Party,” and “My daughter just sent me the abstract from your leader’s speech - superb” is typical feedback. Decide for yourself here. We warn you: it is long.

The Speech From The Throne

The Government’s Speech from the Throne is supposed to set out its agenda for the term of Parliament. The short version is: The Government will continue to point to how badly off the rest of the world is with Covid-19, it will go to war on anything that emits carbon dioxide, it will get creative with measuring its results. Who needs GDP when we have wellbeing? The full version is here.

A Natural

We have long said Brooke van Velden is a future star. Most new MPs will not speak before Christmas. The few exceptions are those who will give a well-rehearsed maiden statement under the convention that there is no heckling. Watch Brooke speaking minutes after being sworn in as an MP, and see a star being born.

Tragedy Compounded

The Government will release the Royal Commission of inquiry into the Christchurch terror attacks on 8 December. The Federation of Islamic Associations has already released its own report. It finds what’s been an open secret: the terrorist was not vetted when he got his licence. Instead of taking responsibility, Police bosses lobbied Government to make rushed, ineffective, and premature changes to firearms laws.

Taxes Going Up

If there was ever an example of why we need to raise our sights in politics, it is coming this week. The Government is going to raise the top tax rate on income over $180,000. It will do this using parliamentary urgency. It will raise little revenue. It will be justified by pointing out that few people will pay it. Labour says it is okay to pick on a minority if that minority is successful.

Agenda Setting

ACT has argued for some time that the Reserve Bank needs to change how it defines inflation. Asset price inflation matters as well as inflation in the prices of goods and services. At the moment, the Reserve Bank considers the price of pizzas, petrol, and cigarettes, but not the most important asset most New Zealanders will purchase. Last Tuesday, the Government wrote to the Reserve Bank asking them to do just that. Lots of water to go under the bridge, but ACT is setting the agenda.