Sometimes National are predictable, like when they can instantly rustle up $1.7 billion for a finance company’s shareholders, but can’t find $400 million for poor IHC carers or to pay our teachers properly. Or when they can find $80 million to hang with a pair of hobbits, but can’t find money to give our toddlers the best educational start.
But sometimes it’s not predictable which promises they’ll break. So I thought I’d try and keep track, starting with the biggies:
1/ According to John Key, the fundamental reason of his government was To Catch Australian Wages: instead we’ve gone backwards by over $50/week
2/ Not raise GST: it’s now 15%
3/ Leave the Early Childhood Education 20 hours free policy alone: they’ve broken it by cutting subsidies by $400 million, ensuring the quality of teaching decreases and the cost goes up for parents. And now Tolley has raised the prospect of cutting the policy entirely.
4/ Ultra-fast broadband: we should all be connected to ultra-fast broadband by now. Instead there are no moves so far.
5/ “Cap” civil servants, not cut any from the front line: over 2000 jobs gone, including from the “front line” of nurses and doctors etc. Another 500 to go in the next year.
6/ Prioritise public education: instead they’ve cut Adult and Community Education and Early Childhood Education, using some of the money to fund private schools. Indeed Stephen Joyce has said public education is not a short or medium term priority. Meanwhile National Standards are set to lower the quality of what has just been pronounced the world’s best education system.
7/ Tax cuts “north of $50/week”: Only those earning over $80k have seen these, with those at the bottom of the income scale worse off tax-wise. And much worse off after 2 years without pay rises due to National’s policies.
8/ No further restrictions on union access to workplaces: New bill introduces exactly this.
9/ They promised to allow beneficiaries to earn $100/week before their benefits were affected: But only did it for some.
10/ Abolish Maori seats (not that I have a problem with them breaking that one…)
11/ Be responsible economic stewards: they’ve put the country into debt to give our money to the rich, had a do-nothing economic policy that has failed to allow us to “race out of recession” (in John Key’s words), leaving us stumbling back into a second recession. They’ve conducted multiple attacks (from the 90-day fire-at-will bills to the Hobbit law, with much inbetween) on the rights of the ~80% of us who are “workers” (employed for a living), lowering our wages in real terms.
Any I’ve missed?