The leftward and other blatherings of Span (now with Snaps!)

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

No policy please, we're National

So let me get this straight, John Key's policy announcements since his ascension are:

  • A (privately-donated) muesli bar in every school lunch box
  • Back To The Workhouses Work For The Dole (maybe, not sure yet; I don't know, what do you think; I'm sure it worked last time!)
  • National hearts John Howard (oh wait, that's not a policy, that's a Tory love-fest)
  • The Maori seats gone at some point in the foreseeable future (possibly put off if National needs the Maori Party to get those Beehive offices)
  • A slight increase to donation tax rebates for the rich (which Labour are going to do anyway*)
Is that it? Have I missed any?

My word, I just don't know how Helen Clark is going to counter these astonishing new policy ideas. Key is certainly setting a cracking pace!

Perhaps his Education spokesperson, Katherine Rich, might even have an early childhood education policy some time before the end of the decade, so that she can refer to it when being interviewed about how pants she thinks the Government's is. Because sooner or later some journalist is going to ask the question - What would National do - and not let her off the hook with a "we'll have a policy by the end of the year" as Sean Plunkett did on RNZ National earlier this week.**

What happened to all those policies they had at the last election? Did they just forget about them? Now that's not very sustainable. My recollection of party policy processes is that the policy remains until it is replaced by something new. If it is really embarassing you might say that it is currently X but under review. Certainly the major Opposition party should have current policy on current issues.

After all, if 10 Labour MPs defected to United Future tomorrow then Key could be Prime Minister by lunchtime, and then what would his Government be doing if they have already shown all the old policies the door and robustly asserted that those ideas shall never darken their threshold again?

I suspect National's new policy will be remarkably similar to what Don Brash's leadership produced, it just hasn't been re-branded yet. After all, it takes a lot of scrubbing to get that Exclusive Bretheren smell out.***

* The current Government has also foreshadowed that they are likely to allow those who do voluntary work to claim some of it back under the donation rebate scheme too.
** Ok so it's only Tuesday which means it must have been yesterday. But I'm not a hundy sure. Sorry about that. And at least Plunkett asked the frakking question.
*** Yes this is an unusually grumpy post. Blame it on the lack of sleep and chalk it up to experience. Either that or a subconscious desire to inflame my readers into an orgy of commenting that will result in the spontaneous combustion of many of my most reviled foes. Who can tell?


Gerrit said...

Attacking National and defending Labour? I thought you had Alliance / Socialist leanings.

Labour is more blue then red at the moment.

Labour is the government yet no comment on their ant-socialist policies such as selling SOE's.

But this is about the third post you have made regarding lack of policy from National. Sounds like you are convinced that Labour wont be the next government.

Why worry what National policies are if Labour is going to be the next centre right government.

Hewligan said...

[i]"What happened to all those policies they had at the last election?"[/i]

National had policies at the last election? I suppose they were going to cut taxes. But then again, that's not so much a policy as a statement of the obvious.

As far as I can remember, it's been about a decade since National last had a policy