“Boardroom” backing change

Written By: - Date published: 10:35 am, September 12th, 2017 - 18 comments
Categories: business, jacinda ardern, labour, leadership - Tags: , , , ,

The Herald’s “mood of the boardroom” makes encouraging reading for Labour (Fran O’Sullivan):

A strong mood for change among business leaders

There is a strong mood for change among the 118 respondents to the Herald‘s Mood of the Boardroom Election Survey.

Some 88 per cent see Ardern as the lightning rod which could catapult Labour to power at the September 23 election. But their appetite for regime change is tempered by Labour’s failure to be upfront about its intentions on major polices affecting business, like capital gains.

With less than a fortnight to run before final polls close, chief executives remain divided on whether to “call time” on the third term National Government.

“I think the National Government has been a very credible and stable manager that deserves respect for its approach in managing the country,” said a tourism boss. “However, it is arguable that they have come late to issues such as water management, local infrastructure and transport investment with a piecemeal, below par approach.

“They need to get ahead of these issues and signal a strong intent as these are real issues that affect voters.”

There is a clear perception that the National Government – driven by its own fiscal focus – left it too late to make major investments in housing and infrastructure to underpin the massive uptick in immigration numbers in recent years.

ICBC chairman and former Reserve Bank Governor Don Brash said the Government has failed to adopt policies designed to increase per capita growth, and many of the other problems (increasing wealth inequality, poverty and homelessness) are a direct result of the Government’s failure to deal with the unaffordability of housing.

“Labour’s got to seriously think about some of the policy that they are bringing to the table,” said Mainfreight group managing director Don Braid. “As long as that’s not thought up on the fly and has had some decent thought behind it before they release it, then she’s definitely got this current Government on the run in my view.

“She’s got youth and she’s got energy, and she’s almost – without blaspheming – the John Key effect for the Labour Party, isn’t she? And perhaps that’s what the younger vote is looking for, perhaps that’s what the non-voter has been looking for; someone to hang their hat on.”

“The Key Government was negligent with the house price outcomes which is a very difficult, inter-generational issue now to resolve,” said an energy sector boss. “English was Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance during that time so has to shoulder some of that blame, and therefore putting the party’s interest ahead of New Zealand.”

The Mood of the Boardroom CEOs Election Survey was in the field from Monday August 14 to Friday September 8, 2017.

Read the full piece for plenty more. Encouraging to see support for change and strong themes of social conscience emerging from “the boardroom”! No doubt a “mood of the WINZ queue” would be even more supportive.

18 comments on ““Boardroom” backing change”

  1. One Two 1

    Boardrooms know that ‘politics’ isn’t change, which makes these comments and articles, almost worthless…

  2. roy cartland 2

    Maybe they see that poorer people = less consumers for their junk. Also that strong economy but declining productivity is a red herring.

  3. AB 3

    Have to confess – stories like this are depressing and just bleed away my enthusiasm for a change of government.
    I guess I want a fundamental re-ordering of society where ‘truth’ is not handed down from the high citadels of private power.

    • r0b 3.1

      Support from wide sectors is how we get a change of government – like it or not. But I think if we can get the Greens across the line it is going to be the sort of government that you want AB.

  4. Siobhan 4

    The Boardroom liked Jacinda from the start…


    It is difficult to see this working cohesively given the cast of characters and that the unions effectively run Labour” was the comment in regards to Labour with Little at the helm.
    I guess we can infer that the Boardroom sees Jacinda as being free of any unpalatable ‘Union stuff’.
    And this election has been more about Water than Wages. I know Labour has policy for wages and conditions, but they are not exactly ‘The Issue’, which is something we may regret. You can build all the ‘affordable’ $500,000 one bedroom houses you want, but your average young couple working at Mega or The Warehouse will still be left behind.

  5. Bill 5

    “Business” is onside with NZ Labour because they understand full well that they represent a mere changing of the guard.

    Their one concern, as revealed SkyCity chairman-elect Rob Campbell just yesterday was, well… “to the extent business was concerned about Labour, one heard issues around the Greens and Labour, and the Greens dealt with that problem themselves.”

    Throw on top of that that Jacinda Ardern refused to even state that she’d like to see the Green Party represented in Cabinet (this morning on a RNZ interview). Then sit that alongside them triangulating every major damned Green Party policy, bar their one on poverty, and ripping the substance from the ones they have triangulated.

    For good measure throw in their apparent efforts to starve the Greens of oxygen – a bullshit, but headline grabbing “First 100 Days presser on the same day that the Green Party release their Climate Policy!!?

    Sure. The “boardrooms” are on side. And the single malt’s in the sideboard to boot.

    Any NZ Labour supporter who considers themselves left or progressive has, I’d suggest, an obligation to party vote Green unless they can somehow square the circle of being a progressive who knowingly votes to prop up Liberalism.

  6. Nick 6

    Yes Green Party Vote…..we need Veges with our meat and potatoes, right.

  7. Millionaires fight to decide government in last-minute bidding war

    The election drag race is going down to the line – and now, the millionaires are stepping up to fuel it.

    Two well-known names are investing in the results they want: hotelier Lani Hagaman is backing the governing National Party; Mainfreight founder Bruce Plested is, it seems, trying to take them down.

    A fortnight out from the election, and the total of disclosed donations in the past month has topped $1 million.

    Some of the ‘boardroom’ obviously don’t want change and stumping up the cash to try and prevent it.

    • DSpare 7.1

      Money alone doesn’t win elections – otherwise TOP would be much higher in the polls and the IMPs would have got a majority last election. It is a shortsighted business that only donates to one side in an election. No matter who forms the government. they still want to be in a position to call in favours.

      • Money alone doesn’t win elections

        But it is of major assistance:

        For at least some observers of the campaign, such anecdotes serve as evidence that money matters far less than we imagine. The campaign so far, however, is fairly consistent with what we understand about the effects of money on the electoral process. That is, money is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for winning an election. Candidates who can’t raise money necessarily lose, but raising (or spending) the most money is no guarantee of victory.

        My bold.

        • DSpare

          So, Trump necessarily lost the 2016 USAn election because he had the least money (according to the charts in that blog)? Donations of volunteer time and passion, plus unpaid media space seem to be more effective. I guess personality and message count for something too; but probably not as much as politicians like to think.

          I was more trying to say that; money’s main point for the corporate donors is in securing favourable treatment for that donor. Who makes up the government that is obliged to return the favour is really a bit irrelevant from that perspective.

          • Draco T Bastard

            So, Trump necessarily lost the 2016 USAn election because he had the least money (according to the charts in that blog)?

            Last time I looked – he did lose. It was only the vagaries of the US political system that got him into power. We’ve had our own experience of the losers ending up in power after an election because of such poor political systems.

            I was more trying to say that; money’s main point for the corporate donors is in securing favourable treatment for that donor.

            Which tells us that money needs to be removed from the political system. No one should have such heightened influence just because they’re rich.

  8. DSpare 8

    “Hurricane Ardern”? It is a nice enough cartoon, but hurricanes are named with firstnames, not surnames (eg; Harvey, Irma, Jose). Gordon Campbell was more on point with his; “Hurricane Jacinda”, which comes from a good post that has some relevance to the OP:

    Presumably, there would be widespread agreement among voters that wealth earned from investment should be taxed fairly, and at much the same rate as the income earned from wages and salaries. Currently, it isn’t. If there’s agreement on that principle – and most other countries recognize the principle more comprehensively than we do – then the rest is merely in the detail. Detail can fairly be left to the tax working group to come up with options, rather than being commitments concocted by politicians on the fly…

    Winston Peters has recently treated a continued lack of detail by Labour (post election) about its tax plans, as being a deal breaker in the coalition negotiations to form a new government. The irony of Peters, of all people, demanding clarity as a democratic right about one’s prior intentions is obvious. On tax, just how NZF plans to generate the revenue for its spending promises is also entirely opaque.


  9. mosa 9

    Yeah the Greens are the lefts only insurance policy.

  10. red-blooded 10

    Honestly, people – even with NZF as coalition partners (which is NOT the option I favour, if we have a choice) a Labour-led government will be a big improvement on what we’ve had for the last 9 years. Cheer up!

    Those of you who are committed to party voting Green, good on you. I hope it’s a Labour-Green (and if necessary Māori Party) coalition after the 23rd. But my biggest hope is that we don’t get another 9 years of the slack, uncaring bastards we’ve had.

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