Understanding New Zealand First through the power of poetry

Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister.
Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister. Photo credit: Getty

For the second time, New Zealand First has been labelled "far-right" in a widely-read international publication. First it was the Washington Post. Now it's Time Magazine.

It's become evident NZ First is struggling with its identity on the world stage. Perhaps at home too. Do New Zealanders understand the party? I'm not even sure I get the party. 

I've heard poetry helps one understand the meaning of life. So to help figure out the meaning of New Zealand First, I've turned to the literary device favoured by the world's greatest poets: the acrostic poem.

Understanding New Zealand First, a poem

Not left or right but nationalist, not left or right but populist.

Economically enigmatic: May the enterprises be state-owned, the business taxes be lower and the minimum wage arise.

Winston Peters is leader of New Zealand First; Winston Peters is New Zealand First; Winston Peters. 


Zenophobia: How many times can you mention Chinese buyers before the "straight talking" ends and the xenophobia begins? 

Elderly New Zealanders will get a new SuperGold card and Super at 65. It's nothing to do with their excellent voter turn-out. 

A hundred million trees; or maybe half a hundred million trees. Trees, though - they will save the regions, soothe the environment and build us out of the housing crisis. 

Law and order and litigation in equal doses.

Anti-anti-smacking, anti-elite, anti-corporate welfare, anti-establishment, anti-immigration. Pro-horse racing.

Nationalist New Zealand First is not left or right but nationalist.

Dogged. So goddam dogged for referendums.


Fans NZ First are not of foreign influence and foreign buyers and big old foreign trade deals. Racing, though.

If you've got a problem, the answer is significantly decreasing immigration. 

Regions are being left behind by shiny bottomed politicians polishing their baubles.

Socially conservative by way of democracy. Serious issues should be decided by serious Kiwis, not temporarily empowered MPs. 

Turn the tap down. There's a serious flood, and Kiwis are being left behind.


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