National’s road lust petition campaign gives insight as to how they plan to attack new Government

By   /   January 11, 2018  /   19 Comments

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Vested commercial interests + pretence of democratic participation + culture war values = National in Opposition.

After promising infrastructure for Northland that they never bothered fulfilling while in power, National’s recently released road lust petition campaign gives insight as to how they plan to attack the new Government in a couple of ways.

The first is that National will champion issues that have big financial backers. The Roading Industry is one of the most powerful lobby groups in NZ and over their 9 years of power, National effectively wrote policy for them and not for NZs wider interests, so National’s campaigns will be aligned with corporate interests to ensure there is money to pay for the campaign.

The second thing we can see is National will attempt to pretend they aren’t championing corporate interests by selling this as democratic participation. This will be an important feature of National in opposition, they intend to bog down any select committee process by driving up partisan public participation and then demanding all that partisan participation is heard. National will mask their filibustering of legislation as champions of the democratic process and will milk that for all its worth.

The third thing their road lust petition campaign shows us is that National will target the core values of the new Government as a weakness. Collins spends all her time announcing this petition plan by consistently driving home the attack talking point of roads not being built for wimpy public transport projects.

This final insight is the most important reminder of National’s grand strategy behind their tactics, which is to sell all policy as a culture war. Public transport is left and progressive, National will target that and force it into a culture war setting so as to woo the disgruntled middle while ignoring the wider debate as to why we need public transport in the first place.

Vested commercial interests + pretence of democratic participation + culture war values = National in Opposition.

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19 Comments

  1. Mike the Lefty says:

    Now we know why the previous government’s roading policy was called “roads of National significance”.

  2. XRAY says:

    Actually, I saw this in the media and cringed.

    My first thoughts were that the Ken Shirleys et al of the trucking and roading lobby’s were demanding the donations that they filled Nationals bank accounts with, buy something, anything! There is even an article today in the Herald by retired motoring journalist Jon Addison telling us how thousands of huge internal combustion engines burning fossil fuel (trucks) are important, rail…not so much. Coincidence? Unlikely!

    But to me worst of all is that Nationals lobbying for the unbudgeted roads of insignificance, look exactly like the dinosaurs of the National Party are still wandering around not realising the meteor had struck.

    And herein lies the giant risk National take still firmly believing they won the election – by not quickly (or even at all) clearing out the dead and dying wood from the party, the likes of Collins, English, Joyce, Bennett, Tolley, etc, etc, (I run out of terabytes to list all the names).

    National can push their old barrows from their halcyon days of early government but the world has moved on from 2008. Pushing for highways at a time when extreme weather events are destroying them from vehicular pollution seems lost on these idiots.

    Vote National in 2020 and you get the Key/English zombie government, revived, all over again.

  3. Louis says:

    Judging by the responses on Judith Collins twitter page and elsewhere like on Stuff, National doesn’t have the support of the wider public. In fact, most people are highly critical of the National party and its do nothing piss poor performance whilst in power for 9 years is often cited. The powerless National party, that’s struggling to cope with the fact that it’s no longer the government, has nothing better to do than wallow in self pity on the opposition benches and dream up ways to undermine the new government.The thing is, National is only hurting themselves, many people are calling them out on their hypocritical bullshit and their fake concern dirty politics. So keep it up National, as more time goes by, the more irrelevant, old and tired you will sound and it won’t be too long before most people will be auto dismissive, they will stop taking notice and they will stop listening altogether. And after the past 9 years of National’s lies and utter crap, that’s not a bad thing.

  4. Samwise says:

    National failed at the election. Their policies are a failure. And now they want a new govt to do more of the same…??? Well, let me see how politely I can put this. Piss off national.

  5. Paul Woods says:

    While there are some shiny new roads around the major population centres, you don’t have to travel far to find all the evidence that you will ever need to show that National’s policy, of focusing on building roads at the expense of all other modes of transport, has not reaped the rewards promised when selling it to the nation. Everywhere in Northland, the roads are cracking up from the pounding received from hundreds of log trucks, and multi-billion dollar bypasses & upgrades were being planned to fix the problem of delays caused by the growth of traffic. The important point here is, much of the road traffic causing the problems could be transferred to rail at a fraction of the cost – in fact it should never have been allowed to leave rail in the first place! However, Kiwirail were not given funds to build new log wagons and so were forced to surrender the business. This was then used as the excuse for mothballing the line north of Whangarei. The concealment by the Nats of the report which found $1.5Bn in indirect benefits to the country thanks to the rail network should be the final nail in their political coffin; this alone makes it plain to see that the Nats policy was not based on a sound business model, to steal their favourite phrase, but instead on back-room deals made with road transport lobbyists – the railways are so valuable to NZ that they were still returning benefits to the nation despite the Nat government’s best efforts to let them wither and die. And before anyone rushes in to point out that National funded the purchase of new locos and wagons, I will say this: the poor quality combined with reliability issues and the fact that the locos must use imported diesel fuel, make a very poor comparison with the electric locos which we already owned and were due for upgrading, and the products of NZ’s own, now sadly closed, Hillside Workshops. It can be argued that the purchase of that Chinese-made junk was nothing more than a political ploy to curry favour with the Chinese while looking like something was being done to support the railways. That’s fake-concern dirty politics if ever I saw it.

  6. Tamati Tautuhi says:

    …. but don’t forget they had the most popular PM ever in the history of NZ, John Key 50-60% of New Zealanders fell in love with him. He also pulled NZ out of the GFC & generated sustained growth for the NZ Economy, after Labour had left the country in such a mess ?

    • bert says:

      Yes Key was so good they used a sword and Knighted him, personally, I would have used the sword to be…. well you work it out?

  7. Tamati Tautuhi says:

    Judith Collins criticising the Coalition Government for not budgeting on roading for the Regions, FFS National forgot to build the Bridges in Northland and still got back in up there, mindless voters ?

  8. Castro says:

    All it would take to destroy the Natzi Party is to continually bring up the fact they have a spy from the largest dictatorship on the planet in “our” parliament. Bring this up relentlessly, day in day out, like a dog with a bone, and watch the Natzi’s go under.

  9. This is classic opposition playbook stuff. They generate petitions, get names, mine for email addresses, get a tiny bit of publicity and at some stage, the petitions will be presented to parliament, sent off to a select committee and dumped thereafter. It is what the likes of Judith Collins is reduced to. How the mighty have fallen.

  10. Mike the Lefty says:

    When I went to secondary school and first attended economics classes I was taught that the human race has three basic needs: food, clothing and shelter.
    The National Party wants another added to the list: roads.
    National’s 9-year priority summed up in three words:
    Build More Roads.

  11. Miles says:

    They are a hungry beast wanting to devour the govt, and rightly so, since they still have the moral right to govern, the moral right Labour lacks. Still ahead in every poll. Oh how the Coalition of Losers must shiver. One term, with Winston goneburgers very soon. Go National, you won, and losers are still losers.

    • richarquis says:

      You’re a bit dim, aren’t you? MMP isn’t about the biggest party, it’s about coalition. National knew this, and happily exploited the fact by using confidence and supply agreements with UF and Act as buffers to prevent swing votes blocking their legislation. They just cried foul when the shoe was on the other foot, and you were swayed enough to parrot it. You probably feel sad about the departure of Mike Hosking.

    • ropata says:

      Oh look, a Nat supporter has learned a new word: “Moral”. I don’t think you know what it means though.

      Only your last 4 words were accurate, the rest was insane gibberish.

  12. Andrewo says:

    My guess is that National need do little more than watch and laugh as the new government tears itself apart through a mixture of internal contradictions and the impossibility of making good on their outlandish promises.

  13. […] Inside Parliament, National intend to champion due process and democratic participation on bullshit issues that are paid for by their bitter stake holders hell bent on revenge (look at the roading example Judith Collins championed last week). […]