Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Alright then, how angry and disappointed I am

Yes I've not been motivated to do this. I have returned from the high of being in New York to oodles of urgent work, and meanwhile there is too much negative to even start on.

Obama has demonstrated that change means trusting Hilary Clinton to look after foreign relations. Wise politically, and Clinton is more of a hawk than Obama, but change? Hardly. However, I should wait until he actually gets into office.

The UK government is making Lenin grin with more nationalisations, RBS now being majority government owned, and new Labour embarking on a borrow spend and hope plan that includes minor tax cuts (VAT from 17.5% to 15%, yes go out and spend big) and signalling future tax rises for the evil rich. The Brown government showing it lacks any imagination and has no answer to its past fiscal recklessness but more of the same.

and NZ? Oh please. The broad church government John Key has cobbled together, using three parties when one would have done nicely, is not about serious reform. ACT has effectively been neutralised by the Maori Party, which it itself has also been neutralised. Sir Roger Douglas wont be getting his second chance, and the Maori Party will, of course, face the next election with Labour being the clear alternative if its supporters aren't satisfied.

What is especially disappointing is how willing Rodney Hide appears to have backed John Key, almost unconditionally. He could have granted support as long as Peter Dunne - creator of the Families Commission, and supporters of two terms of Labour - was shut out. He could have granted support demanding the Environment portfolio to rebuff Nick Smith and as a reaction against the Greens. No.

What you've got, which makes me more angry than anything, is the despicable Nick Smith looking at reforming the RMA so that the private sector can take your land, as Not PC has already posted.

I read this days ago, and frankly I'm too livid to say anything - other than how damned pleased I am that I didn't vote for this. Has Nick Smith said he was misquoted? No. Has John Key sacked him for seeking to erode private property rights further? No. Has Rodney Hide threatened to pull support from the government if it proceeds with this? No.

National, you see, has put in place a Green Party Minister for the Environment in drag, one that doesn't pretend to care about private property rights.

You see somehow those of us who opposed Labour are supposed to be basking in the glow of the change in government. Except, you see, Labour is no longer in power, neither are the Greens, Anderton or Winston First. Peter Dunne still is - funny that. He plus three other parties I didn't vote for.

So maiden speeches will come next week, which I will comment on - and perhaps this angry lack of interest in politics will subside over the next few days. I'm thinking of Xmas and New Year, relieved that Bangkok's airports are finally cleared of protestors (see I'm flying SAS and Thai changing at Bangkok to get home for Xmas!), noticing the cold and thinking more of myself than you lot who voted for a disappointing government.

My question will be this. In three years time, will you say that National or ACT met, exceeded or failed to meet your expectations? Would you vote for them again just to keep Labour out? Do those who vote Labour and the Greens do so just to keep National out (and if so why??)?

I hope I'm wrong - I hope Rodney Hide introduces a new Local Government Bill which reverses the power of general competence, and specifies the activities councils cannot do. I hope that taxes continue downwards, and that the promised "line by line" review of spending sees at least NZ$1 billion p.a. in spending cuts. I hope some government agencies are closed and their functions NOT transferred elsewhere - because they are NOT needed. I hope the welfare state is tackled head on. I hope the government refuses to approve any new spending for at least three months, so it can have some sense of sobriety about things.

In other words I hope, in three years, that I'm saying things are better. Not just not as bad as they would have been under Labour, but that there has been an improvement positively, with less government, better managed government concentrating on what matters, and then to offer a vote for Libertarianz as a vote to accelerate this.

On top of that will the so called "centre right" blogosphere (which I am NOT a part of) be content with what the government does? Will the left just plead like children "more of other people's money" for what it cares about - without actually coughing up money itself?


Nigel Kearney said...

I agree it is very disappointing.

A big part of the problem is Epsom. ACT needs to hold it and to do that, Rodney Hide needs to be able to credibly say that a vote for him is a vote for a National led government. He can't do that if he brings down the government.

If ACT regains its previous level of support so it doesn't need Epsom then things might be different, but I wouldn't count on it.

Mattyfin said...

How do you know Nick Smith wants to make it easier for private enteties to take other people's land? The Radio NZ website article states only that he is looking at HOW companies win the right to take privte land and not whether he wants the process simplified or made more difficult. Reading the article gave me the impression that in this case he is actually on the side of defending property rights and this review is being prompted by land owners unhapy at the arrogant attitude of Central Plains Water. I may be wrong but from the information given I think it is drawing a very long bow to conclude he wants to make it easier for big private infrastructure projects to force landowners to sell. You may be pleasantly suprised at what comes out of this review.

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