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.