Jordan Carter gets very excited over National raising the minimum wage:
Yesterday’s announcement of the government’s decision to increase the minimum wage by 50c marks the formal beginning of National’s 2011 election campaign.
Make no mistake about it. The neo-liberal shibboleths of the 1990s have been left behind. The New National Party has decided that its raison d’etre in the 21st Century is one thing and one thing only: to be in power. To achieve that objective, it has one tactic and one tactic only: to destroy the relevance of the Labour Party in New Zealand electoral politics.
Oh my God, National does something centrist and suddenly it is an evil campaign to hold power at all costs, regardless of principle.
I mean National putting up the minimum wage by the rate of inflation is like, umm, well a Labour Government announcing massive tax cuts!!
So does Jordan think Labour decided its raison d’etre in the 21st Century is one thing and one thing only: to be in power, when they announced tax cuts.
That means everything is fair game. Policy crosses to Labour’s left; moderate-seeming approaches to some sensitive issues (the category the minimum wage increase falls into); dirty tricks when it comes to campaign and finance law (see this fortnight’s repeal of the EFA);
That’s the repeal his own party is voting for. And you have to appreciate the hypocrisy of someone from Labour talking about dirty tricks in relation to electoral law. Even Phil Goff admits they fucked up, but no Jordan still insists it is all the evil Nats.
close relationships with other minor parties to build a solid Parliamentary position post-election.
Oh no. That evil National Party. They are building relationships with minor parties. This just can not be allowed to happen. Quick pass a law against it.
It is the mirror image of Labour’s 2002-2005 approach, with one important difference. Labour’s purpose in government was to build a fairer, freer and more equal society. We did that through more progressive taxes and tax credits; socially liberal legislation that expanded people’s rights; investing for long term economic security; genuine treaty settlements… the list goes on.
National’s purpose is to be not-Labour in government.
Sigh, and once agin we get back to the “Labour good”, “National bad” meme. Yes National hates fairness and freedom. They are just about power.
Yes John Key is doing some centrist things. But National is also implementing its manifesto promises, and I am pretty sure that when Jordan was a candidate, he did not endorse those policies.So how can he argue National now stands for nothing.
They’ll do whatever they think can deliver that. It will be dressed up, eventually, in some swish narrative that appeals to some Kiwi values. But it won’t be values based. The only value it seeks to serve is power itself. That will be National’s eventual undoing: the task for Labour is to uncover that moral bankruptcy, expose it, and persuade the public of its reality.
The task then for the progressive Left is to stop tilting at shadows. Some of you wish that National would relapse into Ruth Richardson style politics. Get over it. The Nats are not mad and they are not stupid.
What it will not do is make progress, and that is what we need to show and to promise to deliver. In so doing, we have to call this what it is: a National government with power at the heart of its ambition for New Zealand.