Under the full warmth of the summer sun those clouds that keep gathering on the horizon seem to have been quickly dismissed by many, with the hope that the new National-led government will sort it out. What are the signs of action so far? Not a lot of concrete ideas are to be found (as suggested here) but we gain some useful insight in an item from Fran O-Sullivan, who “telegraphs” the current thinking of Bill English:
The PM – who has a clear tendency to chew the fat with confidantes and throw ideas about with those he sparks off – may add to the pressure on his Finance Minister’s plate as the latter tries to protect the tax base and stave off a potential credit ratings downgrade. English laughs: “He’s always got 10 ideas – that’s the trouble with him. Getting on those bloody planes he comes back with 10 different things. I just say we’ll look at that. The occasional one you just say that’s not going to work.
I’m not getting a great sense of a plan ready to swing into action here. We already know English sees himself as being the one who “grinds away on policy you [Key] float from cloud to cloud”. It would appear English has been tasked with operationalising the “answers” so that Mr Key can then promote them. But perhaps he should look here for some assistance -remember this comment?
Roger Douglas: “There’s absolutely no way I’m going to sit around and do nothing – I’m going to do heaps. I will do a monthly project, I’ll look at the big issues and I’ll be outspoken – what else would you expect?”
Sir Roger said National “needs some backbone – and that’s what I’m going to do”.
Any bets for when we see some of these ideas come to fruition. Budget 2009 perhaps…