Blinglish is confident that voters understand the economy and back the government’s (lack of) direction. In fact he better hope that voters don’t understand the economy, or notice National’s lack of help to an economy shedding jobs and headed into double-dip recession, or he won’t get voted back in.
At the moment the public is still dazzled by John Key’s smile, but I’ve noticed a strong undercurrent of 2008 National voters who are starting to blame things on Bill. That Nice Man Mr Key couldn’t possibly be responsible for the terrible state things are in, but they remember they never liked Bill (see 2002), and he’s in charge of the economy, so…
But Bill’s confident that he’s conjured up enough fear of the big international debt bogeyman, and the public will somehow think the big $300 million/week hole in the budget from his tax cuts for the rich and the likes of bailing out SCF were not only not his fault, but justify him cutting public services ever more in the next term. He reckons the public won’t want lollies this year as they understand he’s already given them all to his rich mates.
Arrogant about all that, he’s certainly “confident” enough to give Labour some advice too.
They shouldn’t be holding him and his NAct buddies to account –
Labour, he said, was trying too hard.
“It should have gone to the beach, acquired a reputation for being lazy but remorseful.
“The punters would have accepted that. They would have said you know you are irrelevant and you’ve figured out why I chucked you out.”
Got that punters in Punter-land? You like lazy oppositions that let governments do what they like. Got that Labour? Irrelevancy is the way to win elections. He obviously understands the job of opposition about as well as his mate John “I don’t like to be negative” Key (who seemed to love being negative in 2008 so much he hasn’t stopped his negativity in the House).
English somehow thinks that Labour organise industrial disruption – or is keen to implant that into the public mind:
Mr English said Labour had misjudged the public mood. It had not achieved the industrial disruption over Government policy it had wanted, the cost of living issues had not taken off with the strength Labour had expected.
Cost of living is where English is the one out of touch, not Labour. A lot of people – not least the 6.4% unemployed – are doing it hard out there. He may have enjoyed his Double-Dipping of housing expenses to make his life easy; he may have enjoyed a big tax cut on his ~$300k salary + perks; but most didn’t get a pay rise in this year of 4+% inflation, and their tax-cut didn’t measure up to their increased GST costs.
Note not worth a post in itself: Fran O’Sullivan in her Brickbats and Bouquets for 2010, reckons Brownlee is to be applauded for trying to open up high value conservation estate to mining, but doesn’t say why that’s a good thing when most of the public are against it… Seems odd.