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Milk it, dig it, drill it, sell it – for a brighter future?

Written By: - Date published: 4:54 pm, July 24th, 2012 - 21 comments
Categories: same old national - Tags:

National’s internal polling is telling it people are losing faith in the brighter future, and want to hear about how it plans to get there. According to No 1 cheerleader John Armstrong in the Herald:

National believes – or rather its polling is telling it – that most voters are now desperately hungry for serious economic growth.

So it’s old wine in new bottles time as Stephen Joyce is wheeled out to have another go at selling the same old story – more cows, more coal, more oil; and more asset sales so we can afford new schools and hospitals. Armstrong again:

Steven Joyce put things more bluntly. Delivering the best speech of the weekend, the Economic Development Minister offered a stark choice. If New Zealanders wanted more jobs, they would have to stop being fearful of foreign investment, accept the “intensification of agriculture” and not forgo oil and mineral exploration.

In short, New Zealanders might have “to do a few things that make us uncomfortable”. The alternative was to heed the  “snake-oil salesmen” from Labour and the Greens who pretended you could block all development and still create jobs.

There’s not many jobs in cows, coal, oil and asset sales.  So National has had to go negative – a bad sign. Armstrong again:

…backing for Labour and the Greens now makes such a two-party coalition government a distinct possibility.

Not so long ago, the Greens and National were playing political footsie. In Key’s eyes, the Greens were “green Greens” back then. Now they are “red Greens” who would block every initiative to move the country forward in economic terms.

It is an old tactic. National is trying to scare middle-ground voters away from Labour by portraying the latter as hostage to the Greens. The Greens may no longer fit the loony-tunes stereotype National is trying to recreate for them.

But that won’t stop National trying.

So they’re trying lying. Maybe their polls are also telling them people aren’t buying.



21 comments on “Milk it, dig it, drill it, sell it – for a brighter future?”

  1. Draco T Bastard 1

    What Joyce, National and their cheerleader Armstrong is saying is that their only plan for this country is to make us unsustainable and with no wealth left (once you’ve sold/used up all the resources there’s no wealth).

    So they’re trying lying.

    They’ve been lying the entire time. Now they’re going back to their standard, untruthful, attack lines.

    • Kotahi Tāne Huna 1.1

      Damn straight. I haven’t heard a remotely honest statement out of a Tory since Margaret Thatcher demanded we address the Greenhouse Effect.

  2. Pete 2

    So it’s old wine in new bottles time as Stephen Joyce is wheeled out to have another go at selling the same old story – more cows, more coal, more oil; and more asset sales so we can afford new schools and hospitals.

    And if it gets really grim, they’ll announce ultra-fast broadband. Again.

  3. mac1 3

    “So National has had to go negative – a bad sign. Armstrong again:

    …backing for Labour and the Greens now makes such a two-party coalition government a distinct possibility.”

    Distinctly positive thinking is this. Nothing at all to frighten the horses, especially when as I suspect the stronger Green vote comes from former Labour. If I were on the Right, the voters that would scare me are those younger voters who haven’t voted yet. If they turn out, representative as they are of a younger demographic for whom the brighter future is a blighted prospect under the rule of the 1%ers, the Right will be buried under a landslide of people taking back their country from the divided and unhappy society that is being prepared for us.

  4. hoom 4

    When are they going to complete their long promised review of mining Royalties?

    Its one thing if the Government gets a big slice & the mining company is NZ owned -> profits stay in the domestic market.

    But if the Government gets sod all like now, all we get is a few relatively low-paid worker jobs, a couple of ridiculously over-paid tax dodging executives & all the profit gets exported overseas into the bank accounts of foreign mining companies then no matter how much new mining you do it won’t do anything much for the economy.

    In other words “Show me the money son”.

    • framu 4.1

      “Its one thing if the Government gets a big slice & the mining company is NZ owned”

      and you know what – if they actually announced that this was the aim – most of the country would probably get in behind and support it (as long as it wasnt in conservation areas)

      which tells us a huge amount about how the Nats see the world

  5. ad 5

    Pretty frustrating when there are so many New Zealand businesses with a far more progressive view of doing business than the government itself. Peter Day on the BBC finds new ones internationally, and Rod Oram seeks them out locally. Also that Pure Advantage bunch are a pretty improssive bunch of firms and players.

    Spectacularly unsophisticated of Joyce to exalt the quarry-enclave economy all over again like some settler-lord from the 1880s.

    Would dearly love to see the impending Labour-Green coalition lift the mantle of progressive business support permanently away from its holding pattern under National – that would take 3 terms to bed in, so here’s hoping.

    • hoom 5.1

      Would dearly love to see the impending Labour-Green coalition lift the mantle of progressive business support permanently away from its holding pattern under National – that would take 3 terms to bed in, so here’s hoping.

      Isn’t that exactly what the Clark/Cullen government tried to do?
      Business scuttled off back to Nats as soon as they got a whiff of change & we all missed out on the chance to have the right wing free market deregulated economic lunacy moderated a smidgen.

  6. millsy 6

    It is true, that mining stimulates turbo-charged economic growth, but when the minerals run out, or become too uneconomic to extract, it all burns out. Ghost towns all over the country attest to that. Look at some of the towns in Central Otago.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Its what you do with that wealth while it is here which is important. Buying crappy imported foreign made goods is not high on the list.

      • millsy 6.1.1

        Ironically the Greens are the only people who advocate putting the money from mining into a sovereign wealth fund. ACT and National want to use it to subsidise tax cuts, dont know what Labour want to do with it..

        • Colonial Viper

          Sovereign wealth fund is a bad idea, I have to say. You would inevitably end up having to invest it in financial products, mostly overseas, essentially feeding the beast with the goodness of what comes out of our ground.

          • millsy

            “You would inevitably end up having to invest it in financial products, mostly overseas, essentially feeding the beast with the goodness of what comes out of our ground.”

            Not necessarily, CV. Im thinking along the line of a source for domestic capital, and perhaps funding for infrastructure.

            ie I think the US uses its royalties for offshore oil and gas to purchase land for its national parks.

            • Colonial Viper

              Not necessarily, CV. Im thinking along the line of a source for domestic capital, and perhaps funding for infrastructure.

              Now that’s something I could back 🙂

      • lostinsuburbia 6.1.2

        But hey TVs and computers are so cheap now so Bill English says we should be happy….

        Lets just trash our local environment so we shut ourselves out of other productive activities and base our economy on activities that are reliant on a number of dwindling resources e.g. easily accessible oil (cause deep sea drilling is going to do sod all really for energy security)

    • rosy 6.2

      In Central Otago it’s the ghost towns, in the Coromandel it’s environmental problems – the tailings dams that are left behind from open cast mines. The Newmont tailings dam near Waihi is massive – 40 million cubic metres – and the Tui mine tailings dam sitting above Te Aroha is a threat to waterways and the town. The mining company going bust also means the rate/taxpayer must pick up the cost stabilising it. The Golden Cross mine was also abandoned with stabilisation of the tailings dam a problem.

      (Newmont has a ‘bond’ system if I remember correctly, but I’m not sure how much, or how long it will maintain the dam under normal conditions).

      It’s one thing mining in geologically stable land miles from anywhere – quite another mining in geologically unstable, high rainfall areas. I doubt Mr Joyce cares about the difference, especially with a streamlined EPA to guide development.

      Also the royalties are minimal and the economic development can be patchy, for example Waihi is still a low income area with a relatively high proportion of people who are benefit-dependent. Not to mention the problems the locals are going through with housing damage.

  7. Tracey 7

    Isn’t it interesting that the only way out of the economic doledrums (sp?) is to do all of the things the Nats have wanted to do for decades, drill (on and offshore), sell assets and turn more inappropriate areas (like north canterbury) into dairying. People conveniently forget when comparing us to Australia that most of their mining is done in a red desert which creeps ever closer tot he shoreline. Ours is proposed in rain forest. green lush bush sustaining life (otherwise known as the ecosystem – which so many people think doesn’t matter).
    So, you do nothing, stand on the bridge and watch the ship going down then suggest we invest in higher powered binoculars to spot future icebergs.

    • prism 7.1

      Can’t afford binoculars and what could I do if I had them and spotted icebergs?

  8. Tracey 8

    Ah prism, it doesn’t matter that you couldn’t do anything once you spotted them, spotting them would be the achievement, doing something is aspirational and has to wait til we can afford it.

  9. prism 9

    Tracey Yeah a nice to have but….

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