Keeping The Hope Of “Delivery” – And “Jacinda” – Alive.

45
2219

 

AS THE “YEAR OF DELIVERY” draws to its end, what have Jacinda Ardern and her colleagues delivered us? Well, they have not delivered 100,000 affordable houses. Nor have they brought Climate Change to a shuddering halt. Child poverty has not been ended. Our rivers and streams remain unswimmable. New Zealand’s farmers have yet to assume a measure of responsibility commensurate with their contribution to anthropogenic global warming. The number of ticks on Jacinda’s “To Do List” is far from impressive.

And yet, unlike my friend, Bryce Edwards, I am reluctant to rebuke Jacinda too harshly. Why? because a surprising number of New Zealanders remain hopeful that what Jacinda promised to deliver remains deliverable. Many of us continue to believe that change – real change – is possible. Do we have criticisms about the way in which Jacinda’s government has gone about “transforming” New Zealand? Of course we have. But the very fact that so many of us are critical of the way she and her government have set about their task, surely implies that a more direct route to transformation exists, and that there is yet a chance that a progressive government might find it?

Bryce’s criticism of Jacinda’s performance on the international stage struck me as particularly unfair. Does he seriously believe that anyone would have been impressed by a New Zealand Prime Minister deliberately sabotaging her country’s relationship with the United States by criticising President Trump’s stance on Climate Change directly to his face? New Zealand’s diplomats have spent the best part of 35 years repairing the damage done to the US-NZ relationship by the Lange Government’s refusal to admit the USS Buchanan in 1985. What would she have gained for her country by rebuking publicly the most errant and volatile individual to occupy the White House in the entire history of the United States? When Trump’s inevitable retribution came – swift and devastating – wouldn’t the response of most New Zealanders have been: “What on Earth did you do that for?”

Nevertheless, Bryce insisted (in The Guardian, no less)  that Jacinda, as the political leader dubbed the “Anti-Trump” by a handful of globally-syndicated political commentators, had only two viable alternatives in New York. Not to meet with Trump at all. (Thereby preserving her progressive reputation at home.) Or, if she did meet with him, to “speak truth to power” by upbraiding him publicly for his refusal to come to terms with the reality of Climate Change. (Thereby enhancing her progressive reputation abroad.) That either course of action, if followed, would have proved diplomatically disastrous for New Zealand mattered less to Bryce than Jacinda forfeiting her “Anti-Trump” image. Fortunately, the opinions of political commentators are not the only ones prime ministers are obliged to consider. Equally fortunately, Jacinda was persuaded that foreign policy is much too important to be guided by nick-names.

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Certainly, it is my view that Jacinda acquitted herself brilliantly in New York. In her meeting with Trump she did nothing to undermine the efforts of her key coalition ally (and Foreign Minister) Winston Peters to preserve and, if possible, enhance the laboriously assembled rapprochement between Washington and Wellington. Jacinda’s open and engaging personality clearly charmed the notoriously thin-skinned Trump. The process of initiating formal negotiations for a US-NZ Free Trade Agreement was nudged forward – much, it must be presumed, to MFAT’s delight. The President even had questions about the NZ Government’s gun buy-back scheme. Remarkable!

Bryce also comments on how unfortunate it was for Jacinda to follow Greta Thunberg (whom he dubs the “New Anti-Trump”) at the Climate Action Summit. Truthfully, however, it is difficult to see how anyone could have “followed” Greta. Moments like hers are rare in human history. The best any political leader can hope to do is respond to “the voice of a generation” with grace and dignity. Jacinda did not let her country down.

What Bryce did not devote anything like enough attention to in his commentary was the gap between Jacinda’s extraordinarily adroit performances abroad and her less-than-stellar accomplishments at home. In explaining this increasingly significant discrepancy, however, we cannot avoid touching upon the real cause of Jacinda’s domestic failures. This has much less to do with the Prime Minister’s alleged “flakiness” than it does with the fact that when she goes abroad Jacinda is in control. Success or failure is hers to determine: the product of her own wit and intuition. Back home, the situation is very different. Back home the Labour leader is not free to set and execute her own agenda – none of her Cabinet are. The Coalition Government simply cannot be more radical or innovative than its most conservative member – NZ First.

It will require every bit of her diplomatic talent, but Jacinda must, somehow, make it clear to Winston Peters, and his caucus, that by their decision to bring into being a coalition government with the Labour Party (supported by the Greens) NZ First was throwing its weight behind the cause of progressive politics in New Zealand. By the same token, the party’s repeated refusals to allow Labour’s and the Greens’ progressive agenda to be advanced – be it the Capital Gains Tax, Climate Change, Workplace Relations and, only this past weekend, Drug Reform – are making it impossible for the Coalition parties to advance together into the next General Election as a united force for change.

There are ways to protect NZ First from political oblivion (offering Shane Jones the Northland seat, for example) but if Labour is to do that, then it can only be on the strength of a solemn promise to give progressivism its head; to allow Labour and the Greens to be Labour and the Greens; and, most importantly, to let Jacinda be Jacinda.

If NZ First is to survive. If the progressive agenda of Labour and the Greens is to survive. If the amazing stroke of political good fortune that gave us “Jacinda” is to survive. Then the hope of “delivering” a more just, a more free, a more equal, and a more restorable New Zealand must not be allowed to die.

 

45 COMMENTS

  1. Bryce’s “Red Guard” style radical suggestions, revealed by testing as Chris does, to be in essence reactionary, wore out their welcome some time ago for some of us that follow NZ politics.

    This Govt. cannot deliver in part due to the Fiscal Cap that the Caucus clings onto, in part NZ First conservatism, and largely due to not having rolled back the main structural elements of Rogernomics.

    They have however delivered many useful reforms that will have a cumulative effect, but their political management has been seriously amiss, and woefully slow to tackle the “enemy within”. The public service is full of unrepentant neo liberals that leak and backstab and hinder–they are out to get you Jacinda!

    Labour need to win the 2020 election by any legal means inclusive of gifting seats. If that is achieved the political priority–to welcome the ascendancy of non boomer voters–surely must be to consign “Roger’n’Ruth” to history!

  2. Chris.
    The impediments to Jacinda achieving her stated goals in local social equity lie within the economics wing of her own party, not with Winston . And well you know it.
    D J S

    • True David,

      At a meeting in Gisborne on restoring rail at pre-election tome Winston was telling 150 residents there that a NZ First Government would use the reserve bank act to once again print emergency funds to restore all our failing infrastructure and not allow oit sold to foreign interests as it still is today under a Labour government.

      a 45% stake in ‘Napier port’ was just offered to foreign investors this year.

      So it is ‘Roger-nomes clingons’ inside labour that are still selling our country.

      Jacinda needs to remove them now.

      • Funny Cleangreen. Where do you think she comes from, let alone Grant? Idealism, except for their version of ultimate reality. Why I’ve never voted for these pricks, unlike my great grandfather who inflicted violence on others for them.

  3. Incisive take on the juxtaposition of Ardern’s international performance and credentials, and the domestic constraints placed on Coalition Gvt

  4. I’m afraid you’re going to be supported Chris. Jacinda can’t ‘deliver’ because there is nothing behind her empty rhetoric.

    10,000 houses: On what land? At what cost? Where is the infrastructure? The tradesmen? The schedule?

    A billion trees: Where is the manpower? What species? Where is the schedule of planting? On whose land?

    Carbon free by 2050: How exactly? Where is the plan to replace Huntly power station? Where is the generating capacity for charging millions of cars? How will she replace the diesel used in trucks? Is she going to quit flying to the islands for fishing trips?

    The fact of the matter is that there is absolutely no detail behind her virtue signalling. It’s easy to look good in front of sycophantic foreign media, but when it comes to getting things done, she’s not there.

    • Well I think the NZ media has been particularly unfair on Labour under Jacidna, typified by Bruce Edwards offering.

      Y’know when Labour does it it’s the worst, it’s most terrible, but when National does it you wouldn’t hear nearly the same vitriol that is directed diverted away from National towards Labour.

      NZ media has been under huge pressure to increase sales while cutting costs and they are making some desperate stories and the press council latley have been having to say your going to far with creative licensing.

      We’ve got a chance now to increase government spending and put in place a maintanence programme that can rehabilitate every vote budget to pre-neoliberal-levels.

  5. Our message to Jacinda “LETS DO THIS NOW”

    “Jacinda CEAC say’s – Climate change is here – act now”.

    Oct 1st 2019.
    Press Release: Citizens Environmental Advocacy Centre

    We all know that ‘Climate change’ is happening.

    CEAC reminds us that while the thrust of the MP James Shaw’s “Climate Change Panel” has left transport out of the emissions picture while the panel has largely prioritised its focus on agriculture.

    Transport is the real ‘elephant in the room’, and is not being focused on.

    While many scientific facts are emerging around our future regarding ‘micro-plastics’ are now entering our environment, being found in both artic regions of snow and ice causing alarming increases in the ice/snow melt that are responsible for increasing ‘Climate Change’
    https://www.stuff.co.nz/science/115098866/exceptionally-rare-warming-above-antarctica-may-be-affecting-nzs-weather

    The climate change panel and Ministry of the Environment must now concentrate more on;
    • Micro-plastics emissions from transport tyres.
    • Along with using less energy to lower the air pollution/emissions.
    • Fully recognise that increasing transport will increase tyre dust emissions that are the micro-plastics responsible for global warming.
    • Use public transport and rail freight rather than the past practice Governments used to commit 90% of all NZ’s freight task to road freight.

    Government (EY) 2016 transport study shows we need far more rail use.
    https://www.kiwirail.co.nz/assets/Uploads/documents/70bd71037f/The-Value-of-the-Rail-in-New-Zealand.pdf

    Last week CEAC attended along with over 350 attendees a public meeting of the ‘Ministry of Environment clean water forum’ and witnessed many angry farmers complain about being unfairly targeted as causing ‘climate change’.

    We received a large applause from our speech on transport tyre emissions causing substantial “climate change effects”.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1908/S00391/ceac-supports-tribunal-criticism-of-crown-freshwater-failure.htm
    On August 29th 2019 CEAC wrote an article showing how our rural area was exposed from overuse of truck freight that will cause road runoff pollutants into our waterways now since (quote) ‘our environment is now increasing with more trucks carrying all stock, aggregate, fertilser, supplies for farming, eg; fencing, draining pipes, earthmoving equipment, aggregate, stock feed, and many other supplies, so history now tells us that these trucks are also causing more carbon/emissions and pollutants from ‘road runoff of effluent, and vehicle contaminants’ EG; tyre dust, brake/clutch oil/exhaust pollutants as discussed in our press release.’ (unquote)

    • How can we reduce (micro-plastics) along with other pollutant impacts to our steams/rivers/lakes/aquifers/drinking water/coastal regions?

    IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER;

    We must also stop the discharge of those tyre dust micro-plastics ‘road runoff’ into our coastal estuaries as this allows the microplastics to be carried by tidal/current flows to our polar ice shelves and snowfields which will increase snow and ice melting as a team of German scientists two weeks ago discovered tyre particulates have been discovered ice the polar snow and icecaps. https://phys.org/news/2017-02-tiny-plastic-particles-tyres-clogging.html

    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/app.45701
    (QUOTE) “According to the Rubber Manufacturers Association, each tire produced takes 7 gallons of oil”

    https://ec.europa.eu/environment/integration/research/newsalert/pdf/277na4_en.pdf

    According to the European Commission Environmental Integration Research the road dust (tyre dust) evidence is confirmed under the heading “Road dust; an overlooked pollutant.”

    Many scientific studies have linked particulate air pollution to daily death rates in cities.

    These two documents provide the evidence to show about “road dust from tyres is an overlooked pollutant of our waterways.
    Tyre dust is micro-plastics.

    Clearly climate change is here. – Government must act now.

    CEAC.

  6. And to add to Andrew’s list, I nominate a failure to cut immigration to anywhere near the levels she led us to believe would happen in the run-up to the election.
    It’s true Labour’s manifesto didn’t promise cutting 20,000-30,000 from the net intake (but rather predicted that would be the result of its changes to immigration rules) but she was happy for the media to misinterpret it as a promise and never corrected the record even though she was quizzed repeatedly on the topic.

    • You can’t cut a Ponzi scheme. The moment immigration is even sneezed at the whole media landscape which has built itself on pusgphing the mortgage debt narrative will explode.

      • The government are spreading the immigration Ponzi and Auckland housing crisis to the provinces… with the 300,000 people coming into NZ last year under a Labour government, also allowing so many international exceptions to buying property here, aka Any Aussie and Singapore investors can still buy property in NZ under the new laws supposedly ‘banning’ foreign buyers, and any residents who can buy a plane ticket here has the ability to buy property here as a resident and anyone buying an apartment around the world can still buy property here.

        A friend was telling me, a Singapore investor has already bought up 18 cheap rental properties 1 hour from Wellington…

        Also massive displacement is happening, aka many Auckland people can’t afford to live in Auckland any more because of the government agenda on immigration and foreign students, so they are displaced to a cheaper city, driving up the prices, likewise displacing those who used to live there.

        The new changes to migrant visas with no work test, is open slather, and will drive up house prices and immigration in the provinces to the stratosphere.

        Annual median house prices changes

        Northland average house price $507,500 up 10.8%
        Gisborne average house price $420,000 up 25.4%
        Hawkes Bay average house price $500,000 up 12.4%
        Wellington average house price $636,600 up 7.9%
        Manawatu/Wanganui average house prices $390,000 up 25.6%
        Southland average house prices $310,000 up 29.2%
        Otago, average house prices $489,000 up 13.7%
        Nelson average house prices $586,000 up 11.6%

        So the question is, are wages in Gisborne and Manawatu/Wanguanui increasing up over 25%????

        Are wages in Southland growing over 29% per annum?

        Don’t think so!

        The government is creating unaffordability for local people with their tinkering on work visas and student visa, and exceptions to international buyers buying NZ property on mass which is still allowed.

        They promised to clean it up, but haven’t, in fact the Ponzi is growing at an alarming pace and the effects should be obvious to the cost of living for those who already live here!

        • Well on think it is rediculous that New Zealand citizens would be indebted by more than 10x their income and 100x indebtedness is a recipe for disaster. In today’s conditions your deposit should be sufficient enough so that the principle balance is no more than 5x’s your annual income. At least then a worker would be able to pay off a mortgage in 20 years then save for retirement.

  7. A nice conventional middle-class summary.
    And like most middle-class summaries it fails to take into account those of us on the bottom of everything.
    To us, Jacinda’s failure to cut through the severe conservatism of self-serving NZFirst means that there is little point in voting for Labour, let alone voting at all.
    You have in your hands the ability to reverse poor voter turn out but you choose not to do this because like all middle-class dross you don’t really want poor people to gain political power.

  8. Any politician that wants to be transformative needs to have am active population behind them. In the US Bernie Sanders is reaching out to people on the street and asking them to be engaged because without highly visible public support he won’t be able to achieve much at all.

    If this Labour-led government really wanted to be transformative they would have been involved with people on the ground for the last decade – instead they’ve spent that time actually trying to get their own party members to disengage from from the leavers of power.

    Incidentally, it’s not just Winston who is holding Jacinda back, the handbreak is also being applied by people a lot closer to her than Winston

  9. Jacinda Ardern .. blah. Both Labour and National do little/nothing to improve my economic standing. Their policies are Top heavy. By that I mean they chiefly serve the Baby Boomers.

    The whole “Climate Change” situation/fetish is just ‘virtue signaling’ aimed at weak minded young people/renters.

    Jacinda Ardern starts most answers with; “mmmmmm, well .. I think that ..”. She repeats the same old tropes consistently and presides over a neo-lib, do-nothing government. Simon Bridges and National are just as bad, expect they don’t want to crush free speech.

    Honestly, not feeling the love towards Labour, Greens or National. NZ First probably won’t get my vote either. I’m just not going to vote for parties or candidates who don’t get politics 101 – “It’s the economy stupid”. Why would you?

  10. We often forget that politicians in a democracy are constrained by the mandate they receive from the electorate and also by respect for those that did not vote for them. Consensual political change or incrementalism as it’s sometimes called while frustrating is also better then the alternative.
    Democratic politicians are not free to follow the ideals they campaigned on – whether it’s Trump in the US or Boris in the UK – political and legal institutions are set up to ensure drastic and potentially damaging changes cannot be undertaken on the whim of a single person.
    Jacinda and the current Labour government need to secure a mandate at the next election for the types of changes that we on the left are still waiting for.
    Much of the blame for the lack of progress must be placed with the electorate and a middle class fully consumed with their own personal wealth which they justify with a profound economic illiteracy.

  11. “New Zealand’s farmers have yet to assume a measure of responsibility commensurate with their contribution to anthropogenic global warming.”
    Lets keep things agricultural shall we ? Thus, what wank.
    Is that because they’re too busy growing the foods you and your terribly urbane friends stuff down your gaping maws?
    No mention of the fucking banksters who’re really the ones, who by farmer-extension, fuck things up down on the land!
    Did farmers suddenly come upon the idea to cut down the trees their parents, and parents, parents grew to make room for rotary irrigators? Were those same farmers doing swift deals with the Chinese to take what ever milk could be sucked out of long suffering cows once AO/NZ farmers could be effectively head and dollar fucked into a prone position?
    NO! Is the fucking answer trotter!
    The banks are the ones who, by remote control, fuck the land and the air above it up. By forcing farmers into financial corners then diverting attention away from themselves, they, the real climate criminals of AO/NZ, the dreaded foreign banksters milks NZ of $500 million every six months while YOU! Entirely avoid confronting that FACT.
    Why? Why is that?
    If you don’t like farmers? Don’t eat.

  12. In the last term of the last National Government Labour were a dysfunctional nothing. Jacinda pops up and is something. Thats now something with nothing. Now Jacinda is a big something overseas, but not that much here because she made extravagant promises she couldn’t keep to get into power. So we now have nothing and not much. Her climate policies are commendable but a two-edged sword. On the one hand they will help us sell more produce in the long term but will put pressure on the economy in the short term. The good economy the Coalition inherited has been fortunate for all of us as a global financial problem now is what we don’t need. The social policy direction of the government is great but I fear I may die before anything actually happens. The gun reforms are good. big tick and I’m a gun owner. The big changes to mental health and the like, that have been promised are just words at present. No ticks there after two years wait. Labour should be going into this next election with confidence but won’t because in my opinion they couldn’t manage their way out of a paper bag. Forget National, the media and old white right wing baby boomers, if Labours coalition can’t win the next election they only have themselves to blame.

    • And there it is. “If,” proceeded by a whole lot of calculus. Pfft. Labour formed a coalition government because John Key ruled out NZFirst as a coalition partner. You still don’t know how to play the game. You don’t have to have the largest percent of the vote to win anymore. You just have to be less shit than the National Party, brother. Although, Y’know the lesser of to young blow hards is still a blow hard am I correct?

      • I’m saying that in order to win the election JA promised way too much. If she had used her considerable oratory skills wisely she ——- Labour, could have chosen some realistic targets that may have been attainable. What that might have been is another discussion. Commenters here enjoy booting National while they’re on the ground but National didn’t play the poker game and try to out bid Labour in the same way. Those who believed the dream of houses for all and a rebuilt health and education systems were in my opinion gullible. The climate crisis is a little more tricky and I think Coalition policies here are a good difference from National that can use the change in public opinion to their advantage but I wouldn’t bet on them not stuffing that up as well and over doing some part of it (the millions of trees) or slowing the economy by kicking the farmers one time to many. Or have they learned from their previous mistakes.

        • Yknow I actually predicted 9 mounths before the election that Andrew Little would step down as Labour Leader advancing Jacinda to leader and going on to win the general election because I felt the winds of change. People liked Jacinda even way back then and I had every confidence she could go on and put a whoopin on Bill English and make him cry. Jacinda was ready to go 2 years ago. Why on earth would anyone knowingly sacrifice the best leader of her generation in Jacinda Ardern for some hairdo selected from a rank of wet bus tickets?

      • Labour has too many neolibs running things. I’m not convinced about JA. Is she another Lange, or perhaps Obama?

    • The thing is with Jacinda it isn’t reasonable to expect omnipotence . The job of a political leader is PR. A figurehead that looks good and says the right things to the right people at the right time. She has that skill in spades. It isn’t erasable to hope that she can also plan the whole economy, revolutionise the economy, ditch noeliberalism, arrest climate change (Queen Canute perhaps),and save the LGBT……….. whales all in one day.
      She can only articulate her aspirations and hope that the party behind has the skills to put it in place. To do that she should probably sack all her cabinet and select individuals from the general public to replace them. letting them go back to their day jobs after 6 years of service. She would have a far better team. Chris’s theory that the politicians know better , are wiser , are more responsible than a cross section of the general public is not something I agree with.
      D J S

      • David Stone: “The thing is with Jacinda it isn’t reasonable to expect omnipotence.”

        True enough. But I do expect her to have the political skills to get NZF on board with Labour and Greens’ progressive agenda. I believe that it’s NZF which has put the kibosh on many of the promises made pre-election. It seems that she cannot do the politics that’s required to make a coalition like this actually work.

        “To do that she should probably sack all her cabinet and select individuals from the general public to replace them. letting them go back to their day jobs after 6 years of service.”

        Heh: grand idea! Sundry members of Joe Public are at least as capable of implementing a political agenda as elected MPs. And the fact that they have a restricted term means that they wouldn’t be hostage to the next election.

        But then: democracy…..

        • Hi D’Esterre
          I think it’s the priority given to “fiscal responsibility” that has put the Kibosh on the promises made. An entirely different approach to finance and banking is required to make significant changes to my mind and I think Winston is much more cognisant of that need and amenable to it than Grant or any of the labour bench that have influence in that area.
          “But then : democracy … indeed.
          D J S

  13. Whatever. I’m no more interested in a government that doesn’t deliver than a guard dog that doesn’t bark. This coalition were delivered a wonderful opportunity by the ever trusting Kiwi voter and they chose the low road of more ugly grinding neo liberalism. I’m not voting for this again or anyone else who takes the same stance.

    I hope other people do the same because its only when we show them we wont vote for more of the same that it will finally have to change.

  14. Party politics was a luxury now past its use by date.
    The issues ahead are too big to get played by vote-catching competitions.
    WinstonFirst is just doing what it always does.
    The system isn’t up to the job.
    Citizens Assemblies, appointed at random are the future.
    But that would mean the death of the Press Gallery, lobbyists, advisers, pollsters, PR consultants, political consultants yadda yadda – and we don’t want that do we?
    That would mean government for the people by the people (directly) – without all the attendant hoopla – and we don’t want that do we?

  15. Jacinda’s “To Do List” for 2020. Is to do what she didnt do what she said she was going to do in 2017!

  16. Not withstanding your comments on NZ First, Labour have to look no further than the end of their noses for their problems.

    Ardern has a deficit of talent, probably born out of years in opposition following their disastrous leader selections, the system that gave us terminally unelectable and if not unlikable then downright uninspiring choices like Cunnliffe and Little that turned voters totally off Labour. And with it its experience and attraction to talented replacements died. Then by a freak decision and with Little knowing Labour were doomed, stood down and Labours failed leadership system bypassed and an electable leader installed.

    From there the built up talent deficit manifested itself into what we have now.

    Claire Curran was supposed to implement Labours RNZ public broadcasting policy. Instead through sheer incompetence cost Carol Hirschfeld her job, caused an uproar, failed to deliver anything and finally destroyed her own career. And the policy initiative ended with it.

    Next Phil Twyford. Has there ever ever been a worse Minister ever in the history of NZ? Totally failed to prepare Kiwibuild over 6 years of being its opposition spokesman, spent months hiding from the media whilst delivering houses in places they were never needed. And none too surprisingly was stripped of most of his housing portfolios with the total implosion of Kiwibuild. And here in lies a failing of the PM, the inability to deal to a clown like him who continues to cause great damage to her government by allowing this fool was let to linger on in Transport. So far he has failed to deliver on Light Rail for Auckland so much so the funding has been reallocated to roads (very climate change producing) by his one of his own departments with it appears no input from him, pretty much taking control from him to them. Jacinda’s famous Light Rail from Wynyard to Mt Roskill in 4 years promise broken, just like that, but not just the time frame but forever. And his harbour bridge crossing, formerly known as Skypath, now lost in a pit of bureaucracy in a holding pattern until National have a realistic chance in 2020 to finally bury that for good. Oh, and he’s gone into hiding, again. He has almost 100 percent failed to deliver Labours transport policies. What a dismally untalented, useless Minister he has been and a wasted opportunity Twyford is.

    In many other areas the delivery failure has not been as marked but it’s hardly been an advertisement for reelection, has it? Competent strong leadership in most areas is a novelty.

    I’m very sorry to say but Labours caucus was so under prepared and so woefully short on ability that the net result is the absolute year of non delivery that we are seeing now! And do I have any faith they will deliver on anything based on this shambles? I do not.

    • Short of ability.

      John Key: pulled a few ponytails and failed to get his pet flag project over the line.
      Bill English: apart from 450 texts and a police inquiry
      Gerry Brownlee: Totally messed up the Christchurch earthquake rebuild
      Steven Joyce: Failed to do the math
      Simon Bridges: Failed on Bridges
      Paula Bennett; Well, still trying to work out what she did other than screech” zip it sweetie”
      Nick Smith: Pollutable rivers.
      Jamie Lee Ross: I rest my case.
      Aaron Gilmore: Don’t you now who I am”

      You see, even when in power, National were so woefully short, so much so, we’re still struggling to fix their mess. National’s caucus is like a kindergarten when the teachers yell “5 minutes to go”. Let us not mention corrupt.

      Some people have selected memories.

  17. Loved all the wisdom of the peoples coments.just one question whatdid National do in 9 years.
    While labour had .to sort the nurses and teachers strikes and find the money for that.and a few other demands .but hey lets sweep that under the mat.and have National rest on their lorals for 9 more years

    • You asked what did National do in 9 years?

      Got us through the GFC without resorting to the austerity policies see in other OECD countries
      Got us through the Canterbury earthquake and progressed the rebuild
      Improved Maori educational outcomes
      Reduced elective surgery queues by performance managing the DPBs
      Increased the health budget for ever year in office
      Introduced Charter schools that vastly improved educational outcomes for poor kids (scrapped under Labour because of union pressure)
      Dramatically improved roading by building several new motorway sections as well as Waterview tunnel
      Grew an economy that became the envy of the world (now heading back into recession under Labour)
      Saw a significant drop in the number of children living in poverty (since gone up under Labour)
      Turned around migration from a net loss of 25,000 p.a. under Clark to back into the positive: Making NZ a place where people wanted to live rather than a place to leave.

      • This can’t be allowed to go unchallenged.

        You asked what did National do in 9 years?

        Got us through the GFC without resorting to the austerity policies see in other OECD countries
        This is one of the great myths of National. They didn’t cut back on middle class welfare, but they didn’t spend any extra money on expanding the social infrastructure either. Oh they could bail out South Canterbury Finance, but fuck poor people.

        Got us through the Canterbury earthquake and progressed the rebuild
        Again, there have been so many fucking issues with the earthquake rebuild that to hold it up as a win for National is akin to holding up the Pike River Mine as an example of fine leadership.

        Improved Maori educational outcomes
        Marginal advances from a basement level achievement rate is nothing to crow about and seeing as Maori incarceration rates skyrocketed I don’t see how this can be even included as a win.

        Reduced elective surgery queues by performance managing the DPBs
        LMAO – yes by having the DHBs just move people off the lists altogether so that the lists were shortened!

        Increased the health budget for ever year in office
        This is pure sophistry, you know and I know that those increases NEVER met the bloody population demands!

        Introduced Charter schools that vastly improved educational outcomes for poor kids (scrapped under Labour because of union pressure)
        Oh come on! You are clutching at bloody straws now, those charter schools were also a scam. ACT Party education policy masquerading as choice is not a win to anyone other than private education providers.

        Dramatically improved roading by building several new motorway sections as well as Waterview tunnel
        Sure, but when you look at the open door immigration those upgrades did nothing to keep up with the population increases.

        Grew an economy that became the envy of the world (now heading back into recession under Labour)
        LMAO – ok, 1 – the rest of the world was in far more debt, 2 – The previous Government had paid down all the public debt, 3 – those kiwis living n cars couldn’t;t hear the ‘rock star’ economy you worship.

        Saw a significant drop in the number of children living in poverty (since gone up under Labour)
        That’s such an egregious misreading of those stats and you know it.

        Turned around migration from a net loss of 25,000 p.a. under Clark to back into the positive: Making NZ a place where people wanted to live rather than a place to leave.
        The gridlocked people of Auckland salute you.

        The suicide rates skyrocketed, the most acute poverty exacerbated, state houses were sold off, homelessness exploded, generations locked out of home ownership, public services run down to threadbare levels, state house meth hysteria, prison populations through the roof and the most vulnerable too frightened to even engage with social services which led to very flawed stats.

        The legacy of Key was mass surveillance lies, dirty politics at a level we’ve never fucking witnessed, a speculative property bubble and an open door immigration policy to keep that bubble afloat. Kiwi’s living in cars and hungry children at school.

        Your attempt to whitewash Key’s hateful lost decade is despicable Andrew. Post this shit on Slater’s cursed bastard child of a blog.

        • Certainly a lost decade due to democratic politics (which is always for better or worse). Always appreciate a little rationality in right-wingers, and our and Britain’s right-wingers are still held to some objective reality. All it takes is for someone both charismatic and without conscience and simplistic stories and straightforward enemies is the new public narrative. And even the very uncharismatic Koch brothers bought that. And we have these mental Yank billionaires here for their escape hole. I’m sure they can buy up love, given National’s love for Chinese money. Despite the model of the recent Australian right-wing victory, which Simon is very keen on, I don’t think he can carry it off, having a conscience and no charisma at all.

  18. “When Trump’s inevitable retribution came – swift and devastating – wouldn’t the response of most New Zealanders have been: “What on Earth did you do that for?”” Answer: We do and say what is right. We don’t or shouldn’t suck up to bullies or war criminals!
    We would get on fine with Tulsi Gabbit or Sanders!

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