John Key and Tracey Watkins have both (completely by coincidence) said we must avoid responding to the recession with a â€˜sugar rush’ of spending. They’re just making excuses for National’s hopelessly inadequate policies for dealing with the recession but they are right about the need to avoid a sugar rush we don’t want to just spend a bunch of money to get a buzz now only to crash when it wears off. Instead, we need to spend on projects that will have a long-term benefit to the economy once the stimulation from the spending on them has worn off. Unfortunately, a sugar rush is exactly what we’re getting from National/ACT.
Look at what National has announced moving forward a few road and school projects, a temporary reduction in provisional tax. Ultimately, (as Vernon Small acknowledged in the Dom yesterday) there’s nearly no new money, it’s just money that was budgeted anyway being spent a little earlier. It’s just like having your dessert for afternoon tea you get the sugar a little sooner but the body you have the next day is the same either way.
We need more spending and we need to be using it to rebuild our economy. We need an ambitious, long term plan for growth and sustainability. Right now, all we’re getting is some candy.