The best that the Nats can come up with in response to the Labour / Green electricity reforms is juvenile posturing (via twitter) about Stalinist extremism and “comrades Norman and Shearer”. This from the National Party that brought you cancelled democratic elections, harsh punishments for protestors, and increased powers to spy on the people. Oh, the irony.
So here in all its glory is National’s response to NZ Power:
Opposition loses the plot on economy
Thursday, 18 April 2013, 3:57 pm
Press Release: New Zealand Government
Hon Steven Joyce …
Labour and the Greens have jumped the shark with a half-baked Soviet Union-style nationalisation “plan” for electricity in New Zealand, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce says.
“This is truly wacky and desperate stuff obviously made up in the last minute in the Koru Lounge between comrades Norman and Shearer,” Mr Joyce says.
“Their crazy idea to have both a single national purchaser of electricity and to exempt Government-owned companies from both company tax and dividends would effectively demolish private investment in the electricity industry overnight. It would also raise real questions as to why any individual or company would want to invest in businesses in New Zealand.
“Even the idea of it is economic vandalism of the highest order, with the timing designed to try and disrupt the mixed-ownership company floats. What we are seeing here is a desperate Opposition that is prepared to sacrifice economic development in New Zealand on the altar of political opportunism.
“The sad truth is that Labour has no idea how to operate a competitive market that keeps downward pressure on prices. Labour made a number of reforms to the electricity market in the early 2000s and the result was power prices rising 72 per cent over nine years.
“This Government’s reforms have halved price increases while maintaining investment in generation and transmission. Labour’s suggestion today is no more than a belated apology for their mismanagement, with a back-to-the-70s solution that would only make things worse.
“You seriously have to question the quality of economic advice the Labour Party is getting. They really need to get a lot more serious if they are ever to be considered fit to manage the New Zealand economy.”
The intellectual depth and honesty reminds me of another classic Nat press release:
Maori Gain Control Of The Beaches
Thursday, 18 December 2003, 2:48 pm
Press Release: New Zealand National Party
Dr Wayne Mapp MP National Party Constitutional and Treaty of Waitangi Issues Spokesman …
Maori Gain Control Of The Beaches
“The Government’s decision to create customary title for Maori to sit alongside ‘public domain’, sets a time bomb ticking,” says National Party Constitutional and Treaty of Waitangi Issues spokesman Wayne Mapp.
“Far from guaranteed public access, the public right will be slowly eroded. The Government has clearly broken its promise to guarantee access.
“Title means control. The customary title will allow commercial development that will inevitably mean reduced public access.
“The proposals go far beyond the Court of Appeal, which concluded customary title would be very difficult to prove,” says Dr Mapp.
“All that is now required is “mana and ancestral connection”. It is likely most of the coastline will now end up subject to customary title claims.
“In addition, the 16 new committees will allow Maori co-management of the entire seabed and foreshore,” Dr Mapp says.
“In order to bring peace with its Maori MP’s, the Government has sold the birthright of all New Zealanders.
“For more than 160 years we all believed Crown title ‘vested the foreshore and seabed in the people’.
“National fears this will only serve to create a greater injustice and set New Zealander against New Zealander,” says Dr Mapp.
The Maoris / Russians are coming! The horror, the horror…