Friday, July 06, 2012

Labour's part privatisation would have been ok, but not National's

Meanwhile, the Labour Party can't reconcile its opposition to part privatisation of SOEs with its own attempt to part privatise Air New Zealand to its biggest foreign competitor.  Apparently because it was once renationalised, this is ok.  However, almost all SOEs are the result of previous nationalisations, and by that measure the Nats selling part of Kiwirail to whoever wanted it, would be fine.

It all started with Sue Moroney insinuating that John Key visiting Australia is all about a sales pitch for the partial privatisation of SOEs, as seen by this Twitter from Sue Moroney

Sue Moroney @suemoroney -Really interesting that the trolling Nats won't deny that John Key is over in Aus flogging off our assets.
Sue Moroney @suemoroney - John Key is in Australia flogging our assets off to them. Dumped Oz PM John Howard says its a great idea. #whatAsuprise!
Of course Labour had no problem with that in its last term, when it sought to sell 22.5% of its renationalised Air New Zealand to the airline's biggest competitor - Qantas.   

I said:

libertyscott @libertyscott @suemoroney Yet Dr Cullen positively favoured selling 20% of Air New Zealand to Qantas, what's changed?

She said:

Sue Moroney @suemoroney @libertyscott Labour bought AirNZ back - that's the difference. It was privatised and we got 80% of it back. Nats selling what we own.

Hold on, but when the state buys something doesn't that mean "we own it"??  

So I confronted that and made the point again.  Labour was ok with selling part of a state asset to a foreign company (and indeed competitor).

libertyscott @libertyscott @suemoroney Wrong you got 86.5% back and sought to sell 22.5% to Qantas, its main competitor. Cullen press release here

She said:

Sue Moroney @suemoroney @libertyscott So you see the difference now?

 I said:

libertyscott @libertyscott @suemoroney You'd support National selling down 22.5% of Air NZ to a foreign competing airline? But not power companies or a coal mining co?

No response.  The contradictions of the Labour Party remain astonishing.  At least the Greens have always had a one way view of state ownership - the more the state owns = good, the less it owns = bad.

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