web analytics

Rumblings in Nats’ base

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 am, March 18th, 2010 - 20 comments
Categories: honeymoon, john key, national/act government, spin - Tags:

There’s a danger in being a government that does nothing except pay off its rich mates, and that’s losing faith with the conservative base. They aren’t rich enough to win from the pay-offs and they expect fairness and decent public services. Garth George is the slightly mad, always irritable voice of this demographic, so it’s worth watching as his initial love for John Key wears off to be replaced by despair (and rising anger) at Key’s failure to deliver the brighter future he promised.

At the time the coalition was formed I was warm in my praise of it, but now I’m beginning to wonder whether Mr Key and National, in apparently trying to please as many people as possible, are pleasing nobody.

I’m beginning to wonder, too, at the direction – if any – the Government is taking New Zealand.

Garth, and many others who supported Key, are realising what the rest of us knew all along, that Key has no plan for the country, just a plan to keep himself in power.

it is perhaps disconcerting to watch the stop-start, one step forward, two steps back activities of Mr Key and his ministers.

For instance, one minute we are told by Gerry Brownlee, the Minister for Economic Development and Minister of Energy and Resources, that national parks are to be opened up for development, the next minute Mr Key takes a couple of steps back and hints the proposal could be watered down.

This is a PR game. Come out with a scary proposal and then water it down, the result seeming more moderate than if it had been presented at first without the softening up phase. The problem is, this is a purely PR strategy. It doesn’t actually do anything for the country.

Then there’s the kerfuffle over a review of the SuperGold card after the suggestion by Transport Minister Stephen Joyce that it’s free travel entitlement is costing too much….

However, this week Mr Key felt it necessary to say the free travel was not under threat, although he qualified that by saying that it would “be my expectation” the free travel provision would survive next year’s election.

Pussyfooting again. It has always been difficult to get a straight answer from a politician, but the utterances of Mr Key and some of his offsiders give political dissembling a whole new meaning.

Key has made an art form of saying he expects that black will be white, finally offering grey, and in the end delivering a blank canvass.

Then there’s the suggestion of an increase in GST, apparently to be offset by lower income taxes and, thank God, an increase in pensions.

This, it is said, is to be “revenue neutral”, which makes me wonder why the Government would bother with it considering the widespread opposition to it.

How taking our money out of one pocket and putting it in the other advances fairness in the tax system is far beyond me, and is simply further evidence of a government that seems to be stumbling and fumbling about, trying to find answers when it doesn’t even seem to know the questions.

It’s true that the tax money go round will have no effect on growth and won’t create more jobs. But it does have a purpose – a massive transfer of wealth from poor and middle New Zealand to the rich.

Maybe National feel it’s OK to piss off the Garth Georges because they have nowhere else to go. But I wouldn’t be so sure. Fail them enough and in 2011 they’ll look at Goff, a man with a history of delivering on his promises, and consider voting Labour, or they’ll go to a fringe conservative party or they’ll do what so many disenchanted members of Labour’s base did in 2008 – stay home.

20 comments on “Rumblings in Nats’ base ”

  1. tc 1

    A fool and his money….or in this case his vote…..how’s that brighter future feeling now.

    Not only did the turnout hurt Labour but alot of new kiwis I speak to (here since the Y2K) were totally duped as they had no history to remind them of Shipley/Bolger/Piggy and fell for it…..only now are they realising their error as they mostly came here to raise families….doh !

  2. bobo 2

    What did Garth George expect its not like National campaigned on any long term vision or plan.. “There’s no fool like an old fool”

  3. SPC 3

    Must be a version of the non PC commentator on the left, on the right.

    This one is distinct from other right wing critics of the government in that he is under the delusion that this government willl focus on delivering for the well-being of the many. Whereas the others want policies enacted for the benefit of the few ASAP.

    Government action in favour of the few will, when it occurs, disappoint him as much as government lack of action.

    Despite this he will support others re-electing this government – on the grounds of its overall moderation because of its lack of action (fear of being too unpopular to be re-elected) – for he is in the end a conservative who opposes change.

  4. felix 4

    Did Garth George just call John Key a pussy?

    • BLiP 4.1

      Hey – if it looks like one, talks like one and dances like one . . .

    • The Voice of Reason 4.2

      Pussies? Roger Douglas seems to think so:

      ‘ACT Party MP Sir Roger Douglas says he’s disappointed the National Party is refusing to support his attempt to reinstate youth pay rates for 16 and 17-year-olds.

      Sir Roger says National is playing politics and putting its own popularity ahead of the thousands of young people without jobs, and he would have expected the party to have shown more guts on this issue.’

      I don’t know if the audio is available on NatRad, but he sounded even more pissed off than the written quote suggests.

      • SPC 4.2.1

        There are so few 16 and 17 year olds in jobs the “help to business” was not worth the legislative effort.

  5. billy 5

    God Eddie, if you get any more hissy and tabloid with the Herald you may as well join the SST staff.

  6. Heaton 6

    I just did a search about Flip Flops and came across this. His Electorate Office
    http://nigelj.com/gallery/v/Politics/DSC00225.JPG.html

    Maybe he wanted to remind the public he is always doing Flip Flops.
    Surely he must be one of the most Flip Flop PM the country as ever had.?

  7. vto 7

    Well Key’s performance since post-election is surprising me.

    He seemed to have plenty political nous etc. But Garth Georgie Porgie does have a point. I mean, he appears to be dithering and have no plan.

    However as you lot are also aware this nat lot are heave-ho-ing on the levers of power pretty heavily. Witness Super-duper-city, Environment Canterbury, tax rate adjustements, Water and irrigation and mining etc. All these things will take some time to bear fruit. But, in a purely economic sense, bear fruit they will. The economy may well come surging back (provided the world does not spiral down the vortex which is spinning perilously close) quite soon.

    I think it is too simplistic to say that Key has no plan and is just do-daaing along. Big business is getting pump primed ready for ignition. When it does the NZ economy will probably charge ahead (shame about the rivers though).

    Trick is, as always, to get the benefit of that boost for the nats at some election rather than do all the hard work only to have the labour lot come in just as the engine fires into life and have labour glide on and really show how to do nothing. Just like from ’99 on.

    So, just watch out fullas and fullesses. It would be a fool who counted on Count Key having no plan …

  8. tc 8

    vto has those blinkers on again,…..Cullen and co had billions of debt paid off, Kiwisaver, Kiwibank, Kiwirail, massive infrastructure boosts (that the nat’s like to take credit for now they’re re-prioritising to get pet roads with low cost-beneit ratios done like TG), heaps of dosh poured into education/health and frontline proactive programmes on crime/disability etc etc.

    Key’s political nous comes from the crosby/textor senior nat strategists/business roundtable hand up his back……he dithers when he hasn’t been given direction yet like any obediant CEO does awaiting board direction.

    Sideshow John’s a frontman, a pretty effective one chosen as no others were palatable after Brash/Joyce/English and co threw away 2005, there’s a plan but it aint his matey.

  9. reddy 9

    This, it is said, is to be “revenue neutral’, which makes me wonder why the Government would bother with it considering the widespread opposition to it.

    George you’re hysterical! *slap* Calm down man.

    Would he be happy to know that it is a substantial tax cut for the rich?

  10. Name 10

    I don’t think Key is concerned with keeping himself in power. “Being Prime Minister” for no other reason than he thinks he can (like climbing mountains “because they’re there”) is what it’s all about. He never really thought about what to do if he actually was Prime Minister. It was just on the list, like being Head Boy, making a million, joining the Masons, etc. and now it can be crossed off. He can now write “ex-prime-minister” on his cv and look forward to all the lucrative directorships, chairmanships, maybe an Ambassadorial post, etc. where his wit and charisma will be really useful and appreciated.

    • Ianmac 10.1

      No go until his Sir John VC is in the bag! (No 4 on his list.)

      • Clarke 10.1.1

        And scoring a century in his opening innings for the Black Caps. And captaining the All Blacks in their winning World Cup match. And shooting down six Jerries in a single day in his Spitfire …

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • NZ announces a third P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    The Government has deployed a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea, announced Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “New Zealand has long supported ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Pacific trade and development agreement a reality
    Pacific regional trade and development agreement PACER Plus will enter into force in 60 days now that the required eight countries have ratified it. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the announcement that the Cook Islands is the eighth nation to ratify this landmark agreement. “The agreement represents ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Securing a pipeline of teachers
    The Government is changing its approach to teacher recruitment as COVID-19 travel restrictions continue, by boosting a range of initiatives to get more Kiwis into teaching. “When we came into Government, we were faced with a teacher supply crisis,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “Over the past three years, we ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Border exceptions for a small number of international students with visas
    The Government has established a new category that will allow 250 international PhD and postgraduate students to enter New Zealand and continue their studies, in the latest set of border exceptions. “The health, safety and wellbeing of people in New Zealand remains the Government’s top priority. Tight border restrictions remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • First COVID-19 vaccine purchase agreement signed
    The Government has signed an agreement to purchase 1.5 million COVID-19 vaccines – enough for 750,000 people – from Pfizer and BioNTech, subject to the vaccine successfully completing all clinical trials and passing regulatory approvals in New Zealand, say Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods and Health Minister Chris Hipkins. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • International statement – End-to-end encryption and public safety
    We, the undersigned, support strong encryption, which plays a crucial role in protecting personal data, privacy, intellectual property, trade secrets and cyber security.  It also serves a vital purpose in repressive states to protect journalists, human rights defenders and other vulnerable people, as stated in the 2017 resolution of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ministry of Defence Biodefence Assessment released
    The Ministry of Defence has today released a Defence Assessment examining Defence’s role across the spectrum of biological hazards and threats facing New Zealand. Biodefence: Preparing for a New Era of Biological Hazards and Threats looks at how the NZDF supports other agencies’ biodefence activities, and considers the context of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020
    New Approaches to Economic Challenges: Confronting Planetary Emergencies: OECD 9 October 2020 Hon David Parker’s response following Thomas Piketty and Esther Duflo. Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, wherever in the world you might be. I first acknowledge the excellent thought provoking speeches of Thomas Piketty and Esther ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Kaipara Moana restoration takes next step
    A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed today at Waihāua Marae between the Crown, local iwi and councils to protect, restore and enhance the mauri of Kaipara Moana in Northland. Environment Minister David Parker signed the document on behalf of the Crown along with representatives from Ngā Maunga Whakahī, Ngāti ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand and Uruguay unite on reducing livestock production emissions
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Uruguayan Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries Carlos María Uriarte have welcomed the launch of a three-year project that will underpin sustainable livestock production in Uruguay, Argentina, and Costa Rica.  The project called ‘Innovation for pasture management’ is led by Uruguay’s National Institute of Agricultural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 3100 jobs created through marae upgrades
    Hundreds of marae throughout the country will be upgraded through investments from the Provincial Growth Fund’s refocused post COVID-19 funding to create jobs and put money into the pockets of local tradespeople and businesses, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta have announced. “A total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health volunteers recognised in annual awards
    Health Minister Chris Hipkins has announced 9 teams and 14 individuals are the recipients of this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards.  “The health volunteer awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other New Zealanders,” Mr Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community COVID-19 Fund supports Pacific recovery
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio says a total of 264 groups and individuals have successfully applied for the Pacific Aotearoa Community COVID-19 Recovery Fund, that will support Pacific communities drive their own COVID-19 recovery strategies, initiatives, and actions. “I am keen to see this Fund support Pacific ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Community benefits from Māori apprenticeships
    Up to 50 Māori apprentices in Wellington will receive paid training to build houses for their local communities, thanks to a $2.75 million investment from the Māori Trades and Training Fund, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Ngāti Toa Rangatira Incorporated to provide its Ngā Kaimahi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Training fund supports Māori jobseekers
    Rapidly growing sectors will benefit from a $990,000 Māori Trades and Training Fund investment which will see Wellington jobseekers supported into work, announced Employment Minister Willie Jackson today. “This funding will enable Sapphire Consultants Ltd. to help up to 45 Māori jobseekers into paid training initiatives over two years through ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruakura Inland Port development vital infrastructure for Waikato
    The Government is investing $40 million to develop an inland port at Ruakura which will become a freight super-hub and a future business, research and residential development for the Waikato, Urban Development and Transport Minister Phil Twyford, and Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The funding has been has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Appointments made to Defence Expert Review Group
    Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today the establishment of an Expert Review Group to review a number of aspects of the New Zealand Defence Force’s (NZDF) structure, information management and record-keeping processes.  The Expert Review Group’s work arises out of the first recommendation from the Report of the Government’s Inquiry ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • No active community cases of COVID-19
    There are no active community cases of COVID-19 remaining in the country after the last people from the recent outbreak have recovered from the virus, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “This is a big milestone. New Zealanders have once again through their collective actions squashed the virus. The systems ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clean energy upgrade for more public buildings
    More public buildings will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. Minister Shaw announced that Lincoln and Auckland universities will receive support through the Clean-Powered Public Service Fund to replace fossil fuel boilers. Southern, Taranaki, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Schools back donations scheme for the second year
    More schools have opted in to the donations scheme for 2021, compared to 2020 when the scheme was introduced. “The families of more than 447,000 students will be better off next year, with 94% of eligible schools and kura opting into the scheme,” Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Ruapehu cycle trails gets PGF boost
    The spectacular Mountains to Sea cycle trail in Ruapehu District will receive $4.6 million in funding from the Provincial Growth Fund for two additional trails, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This is an exciting development for the local community, and one that will provide significant economic opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago