John Key is one kind of Wizard all right – a Wizard of Oz. He can make people disappear there. Duncan Garner rips in to him:
It’s a long way from what John Key was saying in 2008 – when he stood in Wellington’s 36,000 person capacity Westpac Stadium to symbolise the number of people leaving for Australia each year.
His message was clear – that people were over the Helen Clark years – and he was going to fix the brain drain.
Well truth is, it’s got worse.
We’d have to add another level onto Westpac Stadium to fit them in now. Guess National won’t shoot another commercial down there at the next election.
And don’t expect any press releases from National giving excuses for today’s figures.
The Greens have been quick though. (where’s Labour? Friday-itis?)
Russel Norman says the Government hasn’t intervened enough in the economy to keep people here and to keep people in jobs.
“The total number who have left since the Key Government came to power now stands at over 166,000. That’s more than the entire populations of Northland or Hawkes Bay,” says Norman.
In manufacturing alone, Norman says 40,000 jobs have been lost under this Government. “It is past time that the National Government acted. There are a range of measures that other Governments are taking to protect and grow their industries and give jobs to their people,” he says.
Sure the Government will point to yesterday’s growth figures as encouraging. And yes there are some signs of life amongst the ‘grumpy growth’ that Bill English talks about. But let’s not overstate that.
So New Zealanders – in record numbers – are voting with their feet.
This is not good for us as a country.
It’s not good for our skill base.
It’s not good for employers, our schools, our communities, our businesses and our growth prospects.
We need our best and brightest to stay here and build a ‘brighter future’ for all. Who said that?
We are in the days of the mass exodus, and no one seems to know how and if we can stop it.
It’s certainly not something the Government talks about anymore.
And there are 53,900 reasons why.
When the next election rolls around, remember just what National promises are worth.