Over at Kiwiblog David Farrar has found an amusing error made by the Herald online in its politics section which has listed several stories from 1999 as current.
Good for a laugh I thought and so I had a look. Two stories in particular got me thinking.
One of them was headed “Clark’s mission: clean up Government” and it included this paragraph:
Brandishing the party’s credit-card-sized pledge card, she said students would get a fairer loans scheme, hospital waiting times would be cut, state house tenants would see a return to income-related rents, and this year’s cuts to superannuation would be reversed. There would be a crackdown on burglary and youth crime.
Personal tax and GST would not increase for those earning less than $60,000, and company tax would not go up.
Of course since then we’ve seen a fairer loan scheme, a return to income-related rents for state houses, the reversal of cuts to superannuation and an increase in police resourcing and tougher sentences for youth offenders. I’ve not been able to find stats on waiting lists (perhaps higherstandard can provide them?).
So not a bad follow through on promises.
The other article that is titled “The transforming of Helen” and is essentially an interview with Brian Edwards in which he describe how they media trained Helen Clark. The interesting thing here is the PM in waiting’s media training is not just common knowledge but is being talked about openly in the national media by her media trainer. Compare that with the “neither confirm or deny” policy the current wannabe PM in waiting has taken and the difference in transparency is staggering.
Will we see Crosby Textor doing a pre-election interview about the “The transforming of Brand Key”? I wouldn’t hold my breath.
Update: With regard to waiting lists I’ve been sent this report which shows numbers of long-waiting patients have declined:
First specialist assessment: number waiting over 6 months fell from about 45,000 in 2000 to about 24,000 in 2005
Treatment: number waiting over 6 months fell from about 30,000 in 2000 to about 6,000 in 2005