An interesting opinion piece by Tim Watkins can be found on TVNZ; he offers a stark reminder to the public that National are toying with our democratic ideals, and suggests that voters would be wise to remember the consequences of a returned National Government. He discusses the impact of the World Cup on our democratic process:
And you know who’s most delighted about that, don’t you? National. In terms of democracy and an informed public, it’s terrible.
Already, government ministers are kicking for touch, refusing interviews and clamming up on anything that might spark public debate.
For them, the odd press release, set piece community visits and a five minute stand-up as they walk the corridors of parliament amount to communicating with the public.
Many voters are at risk of ticking the ballot with one eye on the rugby, only to get a hell of a shock in the next three years, should National win in November.
Watkins points out the lack of layman understanding for Labour Party policies,
Just look at Labour’s capital gains tax. I was speaking to someone recently furious at the idea because of the cost it would impose on his family home – not realising that the family home is exempt in Labour’s plan.
I sadly have to agree with him, National have the ball in their park, and they’re not playing fair. Labour must find new ways to drive their policies to the people, they need to convey the messages that people deserve to hear in a way that people will listen to. People on the left are putting a lot of faith on the Labour Party to deliver, they have the policies to win support, but serious questions remain over how these positive policies can be effectively conveyed to the public.
I hope Labour run a positive campaign, one that can drive support and encourage those who stand to lose with a National victory to get out and vote. If Labour can get the message through to people and National come out on top, at least we can safely assume that National will lose the trust of most New Zealanders’ for the next decade after they plunder our prosperity.
My two cents is that last time National ran a nominally positive campaign – smiley Key, brighter future – and a substantively negative campaign – ‘wave goodbye to your loved ones’ etc. It worked for them.