Show us some respect, if it’s not too much trouble
As the recently released register of MPS pecuniary interests has shown, our elected representatives live a long way away from Struggle Street. Housing policy has left home ownership simply unaffordable for many New Zealanders. Currently, our rates of homeownership sit at their lowest level since the early 1950s, but the MPS themselves seem to be doing alright.
According to the register, National’s 57 MPS collectively own 135 residential properties – or 2.2 homes each, on average - and seven out of 29 Labour MPS own rental properties.
On foreign policy, we appear to be doing no better at protecting the interests of Kiwis abroad. By courtesy of the Australians, hundreds of New Zealanders have been penned in dire conditions on Christmas Island. Kiwis who’ve lived in Australia for decades – and families whose kids have known no other home – have been uprooted and sent back to New Zealand. The protestations by our political leaders have been politely expressed – with no hint of tit-for-tat measures - and blithely ignored. Meanwhile, Australians continue to have access here to welfare assistance denied (for almost two decades) to continue to extend special concessions to young Aussies studying here. Prime Minister Bill English professed himself ‘‘pretty unhappy’’ at this policy change. Why, only the previous week, English had been discussing issues concerning New Zealanders living in Australia, yet Aussie Pmmalcolm Turnbull hadn’t breathed a word about the upcoming policy shift in education.
Foreign Minister Gerry