From the dust a star is born
National MP Judith Collins has a reputation for rendering government policy to rubble during question time in Parliament.
But the combative politician, nicknamed ‘‘Crusher’’, met her match during a visit to a dusty Taranaki work site yesterday.
Never one to mince words, Collins came face to face with a 50-tonne concrete crusher, also named Judith.
Collins said she was flattered to have the machine, owned by Taranaki Concrete Recyclers, named after her.
‘‘I like the fact she has a nice name, that she’s reliable, and that she’s fighting the fight,’’ Collins told TCR owner Symon Klemra.
‘‘The great thing about Judith here is that she gets things done,’’ she said.
‘‘She takes what is rubbish and works her magic and turns it into gold.
‘‘I like her, she’s a star.’’ The Opposition spokeswoman for Housing and Urban Development, and RMA planning reform, visited Klemra’s Waiwhakaiho workplace with colleague Jonathan Young during a ‘‘full on’’ two-day visit to Taranaki promoting ‘‘Women in Influence’’.
Collins spoke at a Taranaki Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting beforehand, briefing the audience on what she described as the damage being done to the Taranaki economy by the Coalition Government’s ‘‘photoop knee jerk’’ decision to ban offshore oil and gas exploration.
She also spoke about electricity supply and security, and fuel price rises.
National would reverse the oil and gas legislation, she said.
‘‘We will change the law back and start educating New Zealanders about the importance of the oil and gas industry to the economy, and to their own lifestyles,’’ she said.
‘‘You can’t make a cellphone without metals and minerals, all of which come from the extractive industry.
‘‘A whole lot of Kiwi kids have no idea . . . they think their cellphones come from the iPhone tree. They don’t, they come from numerous minerals and extractions . . . things people in Taranaki do all the time.
‘‘It’s about educating people and being positive about a fantastic industry that makes a difference between living in the 19th century and the 21st century.’’
Collins said a National government would help small businesses like TCR and stop industrial relation law being introduced by the Government, saying it would take the country back to the 1970s.
Klemra said fuel costs for his company had risen 15 per cent in the past few months.
Collins said $1.25 in every litre of fuel was going to the Government.
The rise in fuel prices, and the drop in value of the New Zealand dollar, was driving a lack of confidence and uncertainty among the financial sector, she said.
‘‘You can’t make a cellphone without metals and minerals . . .’’ National MP Judith Collins
MP Judith Collins meets her namesake, Judith the concrete crusher, at Taranaki Concrete Recyclers.