John Key has been running a “small target” strategy. Letting the public form an impression of him based on “friendly” interviews, and goofy Letterman appearances and the like. Avoiding the tough questions and the challenging political interviews (though he slipped up once there on HardTalk). As a political strategy it has worked well – Key remains personally popular. As a recipe for government it works poorly – breeding complacency and incompetence.
The small target strategy was always going to come under pressure during the election campaign of course. But by rights it should now be blown completely out of the water. Labour’s willingness to confront big “electoral poison” issues on the economy (CGT) and it’s long term sustainability (superannuation) should turn the focus of this election on to policy.
If the media does its job Key should be asked why he persists with tax loopholes and unsustainable tax cuts for the rich, while the poor get hammered by GST increases and inflated housing debt. Key should be asked why he can’t think any further ahead than the next election, why he’d sell assets when it would leave him worse off after just 9 years, what his answer is to supporting our aging population.
That’s just the beginning of the questions. And if the media does its job Key should have nowhere to hide from them.
(From Red Alert).