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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria University College, Wellington N.Z. Vol. 20, No. 11. August 1, 1957

Labour Party—Not Quite Dead

Labour Party—Not Quite Dead

There is a common feeling in the community, particularly amongst students that both major political parties are "in the doldrums." I would not suggest that this is a false summary of the National Party, nor even that the labour Party has not somewhat lost its '35 fire. But I feel that few are aware of just how much the Labour Party stands for, nor of the many constructive policies they are pledged to implement.

The principles of the Labour Party have been briefly summarised in the pamphlet "Where Labour Stands!" They believe that "all our amenities of modern civilisation are provided only through common effort." The Labour Party "is strong because it works for the collective good of the whole community." It maintains that "for most of the last hundred years capitalism has been the main enemy of the brotherhood of men. . . . World crises, imperialism and war are among its inevitable consequences." It believes that "true socialism can be achieved only through democracy just as democracy can be fully realised only through socialism." "Labour is opposed to every kind of dictatorship. . . Its aim "is so to transform the economic system that power over production is placed in the hands of the people as a whole." To ensure "a more just distribution of the nation's wealth."

"It aims to protect and extend the freedom and equality of men."

The 1954 policy shows how Labour applies these principles to specific issues, e.g., Labour will take immediate and effective steps to ensure that the State will become the sole authority for the issue of credit and currency. . . . Finance for new houses will be made available at 3 per cent. . . . Establish a Local Government Finance Corporation for the purpose of providing loan monies for local bodies. . . . Introduce a "Pay as you earn" system of collecting income tax. . . . Reduce the basic rate of income tax to its former rate of 2/6 (instead of 3/-). . . .

Labour Will: Increase war pensions and Social Security age, widow, invalidity and sickness benefits to the full extent of increased living costs since 1949. . . . Increase the family benefit to 15/- per week, to be subject to income tax. . . . Pay a bonus of £10 on the birth of each child (students note). . . .

Labour Will: Organise the building of 20,000 houses a year, with a minimum of 100,000 in five years. . . .Give priority in building materials to homes, schools and hospitals. . . . Increase subsidies to religious organisations for youth hostels. . . .

Labour Will accelerate the programme of buildings for primary and post-primary schools, and particularly Universities. . . . Integrate Training Colleges more closely with the University .... Increase the value of scholarships and bursaries in conformity with increases in living costs.

Labour Will: Encourage a progressive reduction in the margins of pay between men and women until the ideal of equal pay for equal work for the job is attained. . . . . Subsidise a steamer passenger service between Wellington and Nelson.

Labour Will: Support the prohibition by international agreement of the use of the hydrogen bomb and all other weapons of mass slaughter and destruction. . . . Support the recognition of the de facto Chinese Government . . .

I understand, too, that the Labour Party is now committed to decimal coinage.

All this, and I know it is long, is only a fraction of the policy in '54. Moreover, of course, they have tackled many problems since then. Thus I feel that the Labour Party still has a progressive policy, and that we at V.U.C. would benefit from a change of Government as students, as young householders and as citizens.


What was the crime of Vyascheslav Molotov?
Did he cuckold Bulganin or knock Khruschev's wallet off?
Away in the cast in his Kazakh power-station.
Pondering the crime of his last deviation.
Does Georgy Porgy Malenkov
Ever hear through the roar of the turbines rotation
The cynical spectre of Stalin cough?