Sunday, October 26, 2008
UNITED FUTURE – CHRISTIAN DEMOCRATS IN DISGUISE
Peter Dunnes hair has been placed on New Zealands Official Endangered Species List. Attempts at captive breeding of his hair, have also proved unsuccessful.
Peter Dunne formed the United Party, which had struggled on, marginal and irrelevant for several years. As part of his search for a wider constituency, Dunne agreed to join up with the semi-marginal Future New Zealand Party, led by a fundamentalist preacher, Anthony Walton and formerly called The Christian Democrat Party (which contested the 1996 Election as part of The Christian Coalition)
So was born United Future, a political party which has always painted itself as a centralist, moderate party with family policies.
‘Welcome to United Future, the party that guarantees New Zealand stable government and commonsense policies that benefit the New Zealand family’ greets anyone viewing their web site.
Expunged of Gordon Copeland, who left U.F in the last term over support of the anti-smacking legislation, and down to just two MP’s, polling at 0.5% in the party vote U.F is fighting for its political survival.
With the Christian vote at this election being dissipated and fractured, U.F needs to re-brand and throw off it’s tag as a haven for fundamentalists, best highlighted by Paul Adams, who was responsible for some of the worst of United’s early publicity, when he said in his 1993 in a submission to Parliament that Aids sufferers should be publicly identified in some way, or even that they be quarantined.
No one knows the importance of this secular re-branding exercise more than Dunne.
He knows being labelled a Christian Party is United Futures one-way road to the wastelands.
What chance do voters have, seeing the moderation & pragmatism Dunne espouses, turned into reality?
Does The United Future Party Dunne leads, top heavy with Christian ‘warriors’, actually want to change?
Looking at the profiles and backgrounds of parties highest ranking members and I’d say “I doubt it”.
Just two years ago, the quintessential Kiwi bloke party ‘Outdoor Recreation’, who had joined forces with U.F, fled (into the bush presumably) citing difficulties with the evangelism of Christian members.
Hardly a confidence vote that things have changed, at least behind the scenes at United Future.
Then there was the revelation from one of it’s ex MP’s Marc Alexander that a frequent topic at caucus meetings was ‘the after life’ and all it’s meetings were preceded with a prayer for Gods guidance. Commenting on the formation of U.F’s list rankings (N.Z Herald 28/09/2005) Alexander said list-placings were formulated on ‘Christianity over competence’
It’s best therefore voters examine the profiles of Mr Dunnes team to see, if I’m on the money with categorising them as ‘a Trojan horse’ and 'Christan Democrats in disguise'.
Voters need to ask if a political leopard like United Future, can really change it’s spots?
JUDY TURNER (Current MP and # 2 on Party List) Described by Marc Alexander (along with Gordon Copeland )”as a useless appendage who made endless soliloquies about the perils of the great moral outrages of the day”. In her civilian life she’s a New Life Pastor, her and her hubby run a church. On record, wanting New Zealand to introduce compulsory ‘character education’ into schools. These characters have names like Mark, Luke, Paul and John. On the subject of bibles & Turner, she once labelled United Futures policy on families as “biblically sound”.
DENISE KRUM (United Future President & # 3 Party List) Denise is the daughter of National Party MP and Christian Democrat founder Graeme Lee (or is it more appropriate I use his more formal title Reverend Graeme Lee?) Graeme wrote ‘the’ book on Christian politics in New Zealand ‘Faith Politics & Servant Leadership’ & once infamously claimed on Paul Holmes show that children were more at risk to be abused around homosexuals rather than heterosexuals.
INKY TULLOCH (Current Board Member, Former President) When asked about the Christian connection & U.F, Gore born & bred, Inky attempted to deflect the question, but ended-up telling the public what they already knew, which was “United Future isn't a Christian party – it's a political party that has a lot of Christians in it”. Hmm, isn’t that like Rudolf Hess saying we are not a Nazi party but we just happen to have heaps of national socialists as members?
MURRAY SMITH (Current Board Member, former Party Secretary, Helped form the UF party, former MP, # 6 on Party List) Murray also happens to have help set-up The Christian Democrats. Baptist & Lawyer, a combination that is lethal to consume over certain doses & best kept locked away from children.
NEVILLE WILSON (# 7 Party List) Originally from Fiji, Nev is a Baptist Church Pastor and back home he sat on The Fiji Council of Churches.
JANET TUCK (# 9 Party List) Involved with Tear Fund Christian Action. The bio on the U.F website says her interests include walking, running a book group, and leading a church home group.
I could have continued further down their candidate-list, there being such a rare vein of evangelism to dig into, that was after I got use to that strong pervading odour of pentecostal sulphur emanating from their ranks.
But by now you’ll get the gist - United Future is riddled with ‘fire & brimstone’ Christians from top to bottom & without them there would probably be enough support or man power for it to function.
Forget the cuddly centralist overtones, United Future’s very DNA is fundamentalist.