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National’s policy platform

Written By: - Date published: 8:35 am, August 5th, 2020 - 45 comments
Categories: business, economy, Economy, education, election 2020, elections, Environment, Judith Collins, national, same old national - Tags:

I thought I would have a dive into National’s announced policies to see what they are proposing.  It did not take me long.  For a party that promised to be a policy factory it was a real disappointment.

They do have a vision statement.

It seems that the only thing that matters to National is the economy.  There is no mention of Covid 19 or the need to keep us safe.  And there is no mention of the tsunami of environmental disasters heading our way.  Or the importance of community or family or aroha.  Nothing but the economy appears to feature in National’s thoughts.

They do have an environmental policy but it is not finished yet and they have no announced policies.

They also acknowledge the importance of community but as yet have no policies.

They also have workplace policies that are as yet not complete.

To be fair they have announced a few policies, scrapping teachers fees, mainly to weaken the Teacher’s Council, restarting international education which most people think in the middle of a pandemic is bonkers, and reversing Labour’s vocational education reforms.

They have announced a lot of infrastructure projects, mostly roads and many of them unfunded.  Crazy stuff like building a road tunnel through the Brynderwyns and Auckland’s East West motorway for when the world has to urgently get away from using cars.

And they have announced a few business policies, letting people buy courier runs with some of their kiwisaver, extra money to businesses to employ people they would probably employ anyway, tweaks to depreciation so businesses can depreciate items more quickly, GST cash refund, and a $100 million package of direct grants for tourism projects aimed at increasing demand for tourism.  They just don’t get it.  Tourism is going nowhere for years if ever.

Judith Collins was on Radio New Zealand this morning and said that the delay is because they are waiting for the release of Treasury’s PREFU.

This is bollocks.  At the same time last election Labour had a fully costed and reviewed set of policies ready to go.  And to those who claim that Labour is also going policy lite can I refer them to this website which contains all you want to know about what Labour is planning.

I have never seen National so messy.  Whether it is mass resignations and retirements, selection controversies, the failure to vet new candidates properly, or the complete lack of a policy platform they are messy, messy, messy.  And I can tell you from door knocking that I have done recently that this is the overwhelming impression that ordinary people have, and some of them were erstwhile National supporters.

Early voting starts in a month.  If this keeps up we could be looking at a 2002 type result for National.

45 comments on “National’s policy platform ”

  1. Sacha 1

    Collins is worried Labour will steal the Nats' ideas if they announce them. Priceless.

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/422778/judith-collins-on-more-election-policy-announcements

    "There's a whole raft of policies that will be coming out. As you know, if we pop them out too early then the government, who doesn't seem to want to have any policies put out, will maybe just steal them and say gosh there it is."

    • Leighton 1.1

      By Judith's logic, wouldn't Labour also be justified in having no policies at this point because National would steal them if they were announced? She obviously views the world as some kind of game of electoral chicken.

    • Sacha 1.2

      And some lying about numbers, of course, from the same story.

      On their polling figures, she said they were doing "pretty well" along the same lines they had previously indicated of about 40 percent.

    • Incognito 1.3

      Nah, it’s all about controlling the narrative and the black player has the advantage in this game unless …

      Edit: Oops, this is not OM but a new OP. I’d better read it first.

    • Robert Guyton 1.4

      "pop them out"?

    • AB 1.5

      Perhaps Judith sees politics as like some giant wetland – you never mention where the swamp kauri might be – in case someone else gets there first? Maybe this is called ‘bringing business experience’ to government.

  2. tc 2

    You reap what you sow, a 2002 result would be justified.

    They plundered across 3 terms. Smeared, got caught, played through the media…rinse and repeat. Soo many skeletons.

    Kiwis with empathy will choose wisely. Jude's perfect for this gig as her style suits their approach.

    • Robert Guyton 2.1

      Jude's supercilious smirk – is that a winner, do you think?

      • tc 2.1.1

        We shall see, the doubling down approach with crusher out front seems their only choice. Matty's probably charted the course already up to the GE and swum away clear now, no surprises there.

        There's never been any policy just slogans sucking in the swinging sheeple. Will they bleat again or think critically about NZ's future.

  3. Tricledrown 3

    Never underestimate the opposition at the moment we see National reheating their roading policy.

    Goldsmiths pathetic effort on Kiwisaver reduntanxies tax credit with a 60 to 70% failure rate

    It will be interesting the slow striptease now.

  4. Gosman 4

    Agreed. If you want a alternative set of policies to the waste land of both National and Labour you need to look at either The Greens or ACT.

    • Stuart Munro 4.1

      Meh – ACT are a spent force intellectually speaking. And the Greens are headed that way – pious noises till the wheels fall off, not early and substantial corrections are all we will see from either of these. The crunch is going to hurt when it comes.

    • roblogic 4.2

      Labour has policies, all status quo stuff that National would probably be doing

    • mikesh 4.3

      Or Opportunities or Social Credit.

    • Enough is Enough 4.4

      I tend to agree with you Gosman. National and Labour try to portray themselves as polar opposites on the political spectrum. They both claim that the other party will result in disaster while only they can save Aotearoa.

      The reality is they are both conservative central parties where their similarities far outweigh their differences.

      If you want real reform and transformation, you have only two options Green and ACT. If you want more of the same shit, vote Labour or National.

      And to clarify I am not advocating anyone votes for ACT. The Green Party is the only option if you want positive change.

  5. Just Is 5

    This may not be a policy but National released a statement saying that they wouldn't be introducing any TAX cuts.

    In the first 6 months.

    There's probably no need for them produce any visionary policies as the writing is on the wall for them, just going through the motions.

  6. Enough is Enough 6

    I think a 2002 result for National is almost inevitable because National voters will, and already are thinking tactically.

    In 2002 the conservative vote still reached 45%. That year traditional National supporters voted tactically with NZ First and United picking up 17% of the vote between them. Nats had 21 and ACT 7.

    This election something different is happening though. There is less than quiet murmurs from rural New Zealand, that they will do whatever it takes to keeps the Greens from holding too much influence. They are willing to hold their nose and vote Labour to give them an absolute majority. After all what is the point of voting for National if they get 35% max, if you lose the war and have the Greens with a veto vote in Parliament.

    I hope if that happens that Labour will still invite the Green party to cabinet and give them important port folios.

    • Sacha 6.1

      Rural voters are far fewer than persistent national stereotypes suggest. Let them whinge.

      • Enough is Enough 6.1.1

        I don't think they are whinging. They are just going to quietly vote Labour regardless of what National offers them. The question is whether tat sentiment spreads to the urban the National supporters

  7. Dennis Frank 7

    Labour's best policy is continuity (`let's keep moving') as a semblance of business as usual. Trotter framed it yesterday as a `third referendum'. https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2020/08/04/must-read-the-third-referendum/

    JACINDA ARDERN’S STRATEGY for this election is now clear. She will be inviting New Zealanders to vote in three referendums. The referendum on Cannabis. The referendum on Euthanasia. And the referendum on her government’s handling of the Covid-19 Pandemic.

    Many on the Left, caught up in the excitement of a prospective electoral victory so emphatic that Labour may be in a position to govern alone, are imploring the party to seize the time and enact the most comprehensive reform of New Zealand institutions since 1984. All the things the Left was hoping for: the “transformation” promised by Jacinda but countermanded by Winston Peters; will become possible in a House of Representatives dominated by Labour and the Greens.

    The secret of Labour’s survival as a viable political party, and the reason why so many New Zealanders still think of it as “left-wing”, is due to it being the party people vote for to keep the much more recognisably right-wing National Party out of government… In other words, Labour, like National, is defined almost entirely by what it is not. The moment either party abandons this essentially negative function – as Labour did between 1972 and 1975, and National did between 1990 and 1993 – they are instantly perceived as threats.

    The binary straitjacket imposed on both mainstream parties by partisan thinking means bland is good. Having actual policies implies the parties stand for something. Since that something is unpalatable to centrists, and winning requires centrist support, Nat/Lab thinking inevitably converges on the centre ground of the campaign.

    Partisan rhetoric becomes a loser's ploy. So there's a switch-over point in time, when team-building rah-rah messaging gets displaced by cagey smokescreen. The pros can probably even tell you which month in election year the switch gets thrown.

  8. aom 8

    So what infrastructure does National want to give Wellington? Four lanes to the bloody planes and the city's largest and most expensive carpark. What does Wellington need? It needs a light rail system that serves the high housing density spines that are envisaged AND the airport.

    • RobbieWgtn 8.1

      Wgtn will never need light rail at a population of ~200k in the City, even if the additional ~35k forecast over the next 23 years eventuates. There's no light rail in the world that is economically viable with that pop density & you only have to look at the Gold Coast, Edinburgh etc to see how much taxpayer & ratepayer theft is required to sustain these vanity projects. Buses are much less capital intensive, much more able to vary capacity & operational cost to demand.

      Wellington is also 1 decent earthquake away from becoming the NI's Picton – ferry terminal, without the Gov't / Public sector high salaries propping it up as they would easily relocate.

  9. Chris 9

    Key says open up the borders. Is this a patsy for Collins to respond with "oh no, we couldn't possibly risk the health of hard working kiwis when it's unsafe to do so"? Or will Collins agree with Key? It'd be good if it were the latter because what's happening in Victoria is really getting cut-through with the general population on the need to 'maintain health for the sake of the economy' issue, finally.

    So you go Collins, tell us Key's on to it. Fantastic.

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/122338065/relax-border-restrictions-to-soften-covid19s-economic-blow-sir-john-key-says

  10. novacastrian 10

    I find it hard to be critical of National in this rare instance, as at least they are tabling policies. Much the same could be said of ACT, New Conservative, Greens and several other smaller parties.

    My own team are pretty much lame in the policy depart, which frankly I find disappointing from Labour, though I always found the whole Jacindamania sideshow very un-Labour like anyway. You can't avoid addressing genuine issues or avoiding having policies by trotting out another baby Neeve story.

    • observer 10.1

      Please link to the baby Neve stories from the last 2 years. The ones Labour have been "trotting out", allegedly.

      She is the least photographed "celebrity" child in NZ. The RW nasties making stuff up on social media is not a source you should rely on.

      • novacastrian 10.1.1

        Just search the Stuff and NZ Herald archives, add to that Baier media publications, and you'll find a plethora of the aforementioned Baby Neve related articles.

        • observer 10.1.1.1

          But you didn't, did you?

          You specifically claim that Labour are "avoiding having policies by trotting out another baby Neeve story"

          This is false.

  11. observer 11

    In fact National announced plenty of policies under Simon Bridges (they may have been bad policies but at least they existed).

    But since he was dumped we just don't know if those policies are null and void. They seem to be both National policy and Definitely-Not National policy (as shown on the website in the OP). Added to the confusion is that Paul Goldsmith has been the Finance spokesman under 3 different leaders, with 3 different messages. All change, no change.

    This was a response to Covid-19. Is it still? Who knows?

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/120112824/national-promises-to-scrap-unfit-for-purpose-regulations-if-elected

    • Warren Doney 11.1

      Simon had quite a range of discussion documents up on Nationals website apparently. These have been taken down, and are almost certainly being given a polish, ready to be rolled out at strategic times to take up air. Mathew Hooton was actually working on this before he resigned.

      I don't know why people think National won't have policy ready for their campaign, given it's what they are being criticised for the most. It's not like it's hard to produce, or necessarily accurate, or that they would feel the need to stick to it after being elected.

      Kiwibuild is a prime example of this. Labour would have almost certainly known the targets were impossible to meet without much more public funding and immigrant labour, but probably never expected to win the election.

      I expect most of National's roading announcements are bullshit too, just like the bridges of Northland were. They must know how notorious they are for being all about roads. Perhaps announcing them first is a tactical strategy?

    • georgecom 11.2

      ahhhh the bonfire

      little did National know the thing they would be burning was their political credibility and votes

  12. ianmac 12

    Funny that the headline given to that old-timer John Key on National Radio was so breathtaking. He has figured out that there is more unemployment to come and harder times for business, especially for tourist businesses.

    Thank goodness we have such an erudite man to warn us of these unexpected troubles.

    • tc 12.1

      Great to see a taxpayers funded broadcaster granting national PR airtime.

      A decent media wouldn't bother with him as he's clearly there in a partisan capacity to shore up the brand. RNZ's so fn lame.

      Did he get asked how much he loves Judith ?

      • Gabby 12.1.1

        Did he get asked about Op Burnham?

      • Sacha 12.1.2

        To be fair, the guy is Chair of our biggest bank, reported addressing a business audience (which media can never get enough of).

  13. Policies? When is the election? How many weeks?

    The media is starved of gossip, and bleats. Diddums.

    At least we are spared "opinionsters" boring us to death.

  14. National policy ,apparently, dumb post 05/08/20, headline national will have a new traffic tunnel in Wellington by 2023.

    Reading the item it would unlikely to be off the maps in the next decade.

    The chattering class are making themselves more irrelevant the more they bleat.

    Its called masturbation.

  15. Bloke 15

    Judy and Gerry are going under the wall tonight, they are tunneling their way out of oblivion by announcing forward thinking policies like "roads something something and taxes something something"

    • georgecom 15.1

      yes, and with the roads policy, they can announce the same road 3 or 4 times and pretend it is new and fresh policy each and every time

      sort of like turning your underwear inside out a few times before washing day

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