With our General Election coming up again, it's making me think about what is actually becoming of our country. This will be my second voting election (my gosh that makes me feel old!) and this time instead of just choosing National as the lesser evil - because at the time I thought John Key seemed pretty human compared to the rest - I'm going to quite seriously consider my options.
Knowing full well any votes towards those smaller Parties like the Greens, United Future or Act are quite simply wasted votes, it really only leaves National, Labour or NZ First. The latter of which I seem to think will get quite a following this year.
Although I'm not the biggest fan of old Winston Peters, he does seem to have a few good points to consider, and like every other Party - a few not so great points. So how do you weigh the options?
Making an end to the anti-smacking law? Tick. Making an end to the Treaty of Waitangi? Hmm, I'd really need to do a heck of a lot of research to think about where my opinion is on that one. Although I'm not full Maori, I think the Treaty is a good thing for NZ, it's a special piece of history that shouldn't just be given the flick because one guy thinks it's a good idea...
I haven't any clue yet as to what National and Labour are offering, but even so it's just so confusing! How does one justify choosing one Party over the other? They've all got good ideas and bad ideas and you must take the good with the bad - there's no other option...or is there?
Cue: If I were a politician.
Now yet again I claim no responsibility for anyone getting exasperated at my ridiculous ideas and I am fully aware that my knowledge on politics or anything to do with the Government is limited. But why don't we just push that aside and just consider a few things? Just consider them, let it sink in for a while and then you can go back to your daily business. I don't want to hear any comments like - "oh that'll never work because...". Let's just pretend this is a free world and we're all entitled to our silly ideas and opinions just for a couple minutes a day.
If I were a politician I'd say to everyone - why the heck are we wasting our time? The Government is wasting a lot of time and taxpayers money running around putting billboards up all over the countryside with pictures of an MP claiming "I WILL DO...For you". (Not to mention the waste of materials making these billboards - they're likely to just be thrown in the dump at the end of the election..)
Every Party is fighting to come up with what they think is the best idea for the country and all we as citizens can do is vote for one Party, taking all of the good ideas (not that there are many) with all of the bad ideas. Yes, okay everybody thinks differently and a good idea to me may be a bad idea to somebody else, but my point is still the same.
What I want to know is why are we still voting for a specific Party? (And MP's but I'm ignoring them for the time being). Why can't we vote for ideas? Imagine a world we could choose five options to vote for? Where I could vote for the anti-smacking law to be canned by NZ First, but I could still choose a couple of different ideas from someone else and I'll be happy knowing I voted for what I believe is right, rather than voting for the lesser evil; even if the majority of votes aren't what I voted for...It sounds confusing, I know.
I'm fully aware that when you vote for a Party you're typically voting for who's going to be the next PM, and then they'll choose who will join them in Parliament which then runs the country. But my argument is, for example if I suggested NZ First won the election and good old Winnie is our new Prime Minister - nothing is going to change. Nope. You'd think ok sweet, Winnie is in so everything will start to change tomorrow. But truth be told, it seems in Parliament they must talk and type ridiculously slow because it takes a couple of years for anything to come into play. Winston Peters may be the top dog, but they'll forecast that the smacking law will be amended and reconsidered sometime in 2019. What is the point? A year later he'll probably be kicked out again! It just seems like a complete and utter waste of time, and this is what we pay them for.
If I were a politician I'd say, why don't we come up with some realistic ideas for a change? Instead of the Greens coming up with some ridiculous idea to fix the country's carbon footprint (by adding yet more taxes to things such as fuel), why aren't they being like an overseas European country (I forget who it was), and say that the import and sale of brand new petrol cars will no longer be allowed. If we want a new car, is must be electric - because that's not a bad idea!
And while they're at it, how about suggesting that cars made in certain years will soon no longer be registered and will become unwarrantable - therefore nonviable to NZ? A harsh idea yes, and I understand the importance of those old fashioned vintage cars because they're cared for and are looked after. But cars made in the 80's that are still used for day to day driving, that are being held together by duct tape and cost the earth to run, what is the point of them? Why can't the Government offer the owner a deal for them to be taken and recycled properly, rather than those cars breaking down and becoming irreparable. Thus being dumped to rust for the next 10 or 20 years in a messy car junk yard. Hey, it's a thought.
If I were a politician I'd ban plastic bags from the get-go. Rather than a couple of supermarket chains saying they'll be plastic bag free "by 2020". While others continue to give them away. Supermarkets are the largest provider of plastic bags to the community, why are we continuing to either produce the plastic bags, or why are we buying them in from other countries? Who does make them anyway?
Why are the supermarkets simply no longer replacing the bags? They supply trolley's, why can't the consumers refill the trolley just like it was before the items were scanned, then just take the trolley to their car? That's how it is done at Pak'n'Save, it has been that way for years and we've survived - it's doable so why isn't it being done?
I've recently been getting more into recycling our items at home, and I've discovered that plastic bags that you can buy the likes of icing sugar in, are actually recyclable. Why are these bags recyclable but those bags you put your groceries in, aren't? What is the difference? And if there is such a difference, why aren't we fixing it this way instead? Make those bags reusable! We're in the 21st century, we're high up there in technology, things such as making items more recyclable shouldn't be that hard anymore. The problem is established, so sort it out. And don't say, "oh yeah, well in two or three years time, we'll get back to you".
If I were a politician I'd want to do a lot of things, that to me, seem more important than random ideas Parties are coming up with nowadays. Take cigarettes - changing the labels on the boxes to make users think about what they're doing. Yep, sure what good has that done? When you're an addict, no label on a box will change your way of thinking.
A sugar tax is a good idea, but an even better idea is providing more healthy food at a cheaper price and making it more readily available. Stop the production of goods such as Zero Sugar Coke that is filled with hideous chemicals such as Aspertame, and stop allowing those Coca-Cola ads to go on tv, making it look like Coke is the best thing since sliced bread - when it obviously isn't. But it's cheaper than water and it's more appealing - why wouldn't we buy it?
Stop the sale of our beautiful water to the rest of the world! Or if you can't do that, why aren't we getting more money for it? And the water bottles that are littering the country, becoming such a big issue. Why can't we take our water bottles back to a collection facility and get credited for it? Wouldn't that encourage better recycling, a cleaner, greener NZ and more consumption of water rather than sugary drinks?
Finally why can people continue to sit on the dole? Why can they continue to be paid to sit around, while those of us who work hard every day supply them the cash almost personally? Shouldn't there be a limit on how long you can stay on the dole for? Especially the younger generation who can easily get a job doing anything, so long as it makes them some money to live.
More importantly, why is the Government transferring money straight into the recipients bank account, to be spent on anything? Why don't they pay your bills for you, i.e., your power bill or your rent, and give you vouchers to spend in certain places, such as orchards so that buying fruit and vegetables provides you with proper healthy food, rather than buying lots of cheap junk food, cigarettes, alcohol and even drugs. Surely I'm not the only one to realise that this could be the better way for the system to work? Why can't it be trialed?
If I were a politician...I'd probably get fired.