Promises

Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, July 26th, 2010 - 13 comments
Categories: accountability, john key - Tags:

When is a promise not a promise?

More specifically, why can John Key get away breaking some promises and not others? He pays the appropriate lip service to promises:

“We campaigned on some key and core commitments and we’re not going to break those promises to New Zealanders. … where we specifically campaigned on something then I’m not going to break my word,” Key says.

There are clearly promises that Key doesn’t think he can break. On raising the age of super:

But the National Government disagrees and is refusing to debate the idea all because of John Key’s pre-election promise not to change any of the entitlements and payments of New Zealand super if he does, he will resign.

There are promises that he tries to break, and backs down when he is caught:

Key’s assurance last Friday that the bank will remain 100 per cent Government-owned followed two weeks of increasing confusion about National’s stance on asset sales … Digging through the archives, Labour has found nine separate examples before the last election of Key ruling out one way or another National selling Kiwibank under his leadership.

But then there are “promises” that Key breaks with impunity. Tax cuts “North of $50” after the election. Not to raise GST. The promise to support the Royal Commission on Auckland. The promise to ‘keep 99 percent of the current Employment Relations Act’. The promise to have high standards (“one strike and you’re out”) for his government, too, while we’re at it. And many more.

So when is a promise not a promise? Clearly for the Nats the promises themselves are irrelevant, and major factor is the assessment of the damage sustained when the promise is broken. In the case of the current attack on workers the Nats believe that they will sustain little political damage. It is up to the unions and the workers to show them that they are wrong.

13 comments on “Promises”

  1. It also seems to be clear that Mr Key has broken explicit undertakings to the CTU around employment law changes. The approach seems to be make a commitment then, when needed, breezily renege on it, assuming that:

    a) he won’t be caught out;

    b) if he is, then: i) simply don’t front up on the issue; or ii) rely on someone else carrying the can; or iii) hope the “boy amateur” approach will see him through.

    There is nothing particularly new in this – it’s just that so far he seems to be getting away with it without too much mainstream attention.

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    Psychopaths, i.e. NACT, believe only in “promises” that make them richer. Anything else is only to calm the “punters” so that they can get into power and make themselves and their rich mates richer at everyone else’s expense.

  3. tc 3

    Promises that come from NACT are the same as the rolls of paper you find in the toilet…..lightweight and disposable and plenty more where they came from all destined for the same location.

  4. There’s also been a strong trend of Ministers refusing interviews around issues where broken promises could be raised. Might be helpful to start a tally somewhere on this site if someone has the time.

  5. Fisiani 5

    Amongst many problems with this post.
    Tax cuts North of $50 have been delivered.
    There was NEVER any promise not to raise GST. Only a reply to a question about not raising GST to fund the deficit.
    But when did truth ever get in the way for Rob.

    • r0b 5.1

      Tax cuts North of $50 have been delivered.

      To what percentage of the population Fis?

      There was NEVER any promise not to raise GST

      Ooops. Key said “National is not going to be raising GST. National wants to cut taxes not raise taxes.”:
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/3311679/Key-no-GST-rise-video-emerges

      • loota 5.1.1

        There was NEVER any promise not to raise GST. Only a reply to a question about not raising GST to fund the deficit.

        Ah, a NACT supporter, in the land of Right wing math, two lies makes a truth does it not?

      • Fisiani 5.1.2

        Dear God. If you are going to link to a ludricrous claim about GST then LISTEN to it. Thank you. The link you supply makes my point exactly. There was NEVER any promise not to raise GST. The question raised was about raising GST to fund a deficit. Comments have to taken in context. National have not and will not raise GST taxes to fund deficits. You are simply repeating a Labour lie again Rob. I know you are not that thick just blinkered.

        • Roger 5.1.2.1

          That’s right, the link does suggest the alternative that John Key would not have to raise taxes if the government was doing a half decent job growing the economy. He had to raise GST so the government isn’t even doing a half decent job. Thanks for clearing that up fisiani.

        • r0b 5.1.2.2

          Dear God.

          No, just a moderator.

          Key was asked a question about GST that included some specifics. But he gave a very general and definitive answer: “National is not going to be raising GST. National wants to cut taxes not raise taxes’.

          There was NEVER any promise not to raise GST. The question raised was about raising GST to fund a deficit.

          You poor lackey Fis. Key tried that line and he was laughed out of town. It’s very loyal of you to keep trying to run the line after Key himself has given up. Loyal, and amusing, but not smart.

  6. Bored 6

    Talking of promises….where the f****g cycleway???????????????????????????

  7. kriswgtn 7

    Wheres our super fast broadband

  8. loota 8

    Where’s our pay rates which close the gap with Australia?

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