General Debate: Peters in Wonderland
Winston was enjoying himself this afternoon. Gerry Brownlee made as much headway as he could through his interjections. The cautious PM kept strictly to her lines. The cockroach survives another day.
National's angle in the House was that Winston threatened the PM with withdrawal of his party's votes if she didn't express confidence in him and so she was forced to accept his word and do nothing to investigate the slush fund allegations - rather than risk a suicidal early election. Brownlee asked if Winston gave instructions to the Spencer Trust and said he assumed Winston was the beneficiary of the Trust. Peters did not challenge this assumption, and naturally, failed to answer any part of the question.
Come Winston's speech in the General Debate the entire Labour front bench had vanished. They weren't going to be caught in the presence of Winston flinging out mud. He was going to use Alice in Wonderland as a theme, and there was no way that the Queen and the Mad Hatter were sticking around for that drama. Winston marked out the conspiracy against him:
In May 2005 Winston informed the Speaker of allegations carried now by the Dom Post. [Vela Bros.?]
Big money wants him out.
TVNZ hired two private investigators to get dirt on him. Ian Fraser threatened him and Bill Ralston authorised the detectives.
Phil Kitchin (Dom Post) gave material to TVNZ
Ex NZ First staff member had split up with disgruntled partner and they leaked material
Defamation action from Winston is live against some of these people.
What ever, Winston. Investigating potential corruption is something Winston used to pride himself on, now he says when it's against him it's a conspiracy of the wealthy and the media to bring him down. The groove in that track is rather deep, seeing as how he plays it every time any allegation at all of any nature on any subject is ever made against him. It's a vast conspiracy. It could not match, however, the detail of intrigue and webs of connexions that link Winston to his pots of big money. That's the conspiracy here. He's the one taking money from big money interests. We know that now, so his ascetic mirage of financial rectitude has evaporated.
He must have been in trouble. He had to mention his mother's funeral twice in this speech. Maybe it was Rodney Hide asking the Serious Fraud Office to investigate him? He's angry evidently. NZ Herald reporting Peter's walked off from a media stand-up because journalists wouldn't move away for him (?) Maybe because that angle would make him look short?