Ralston on National

February 22nd, 2009 at 9:02 am by David Farrar

Bill Ralston writes in the HoS:

Six months ago Labour was constantly telling us that was weak, untrustworthy and devious, while his Party was little more than a bunch of washed-up hacks, bereft of ideas and vision. “Slippery John”. “It’s all about trust”. Those were Labour’s chants.

It was a strategy aimed at destroying Key’s credibility and it almost worked but, despite their suspicions, enough voters closed their eyes, crossed their fingers and put their ticks on the ballot paper for National.

Having now discovered those fears were groundless we seem to be giving National the longest honeymoon any government has enjoyed.

I predict that in 2011 Labour’s campaign will not be the same as their 2008 one.

This surge in goodwill is driven by three things. The first is sheer relief. Relief that, despite Labour’s Chicken Little predictions, the sky did not fall when National came to power.

The second is that Key appears to be the ideal personification of the Government he leads. Yes, he can be a bit goofy at times.

If you don’t believe me check out the shot of him dancing with two transvestites at the Big Gay Out. That is definitely goofy. But if Helen Clark was cold and aloof, Key seems warm, natural and approachable.

Key seems that way because he is.

Daily we see news stories detailing some minister taking strong action on some problem that has long affected the country.

Amazingly, most of these actions are based on National’s election promises and they are being fulfilled. Even if you don’t agree with them all, it is somehow reassuring to see them doing what they promised to do.

The Government is very focused on keeping its promises. Hence calls for National to break its word and (for example) cancel tax cuts, or abolish the ETS are pretty futile.

Thanks to Nick Smith, once his changes to the go through, I will never again have to apply for a Resource Consent to trim my garden, the council will not have to spend many hours pondering my botanical behaviour and the ratepayers of Auckland will not be wasting hundreds of dollars every time someone in this city wants to do some gardening.

Soumds like a win-win.

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26 Responses to “Ralston on National”

  1. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,820 comments) says:

    The Government is very focused on keeping its promises.

    We get it. National is on autopilot. Aren’t recessions fun?

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  2. Monty (966 comments) says:

    Clark – the Chief strategist certainly buggered that one up. Attacking Key was a big mistake – mind you it was probably all that the Labour Party had. Losers.

    another example of Clark’s so called political compass leaving her in the hour of need.

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  3. Glutaemus Maximus (2,207 comments) says:

    DPF, you make Clark sound like Cruella de Ville!

    Sure we can find a better alter ego.

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  4. Lou (43 comments) says:

    It looks like we got the real “hope and change” guy and the Americans got the booby prize.

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  5. mickysavage (786 comments) says:

    I agree with you DPF that in 2011 the Labour campaign will be entirely different.

    It will be based on the fact that this Government has not done anything to cope with the international financial crisis. Ministers have rammed through without consultation a series of dog whistle policies none of which have or will improve the current situation.

    It will also offer a strategy. The current strategy is mostly to retime labour commenced projects and to brand these as new initiatives. There are also a couple of big sounding policies such as the $1.5b rebundling of the local loop. This latest policy will do exceedingly little for Kiwis. 98% of users will find that broadband is more than what they need. For those areas that did not Cunliffe’s $500m broadband challenge fund was going to do more than enough.

    The “strong action” that he talks about is nothing more than beligerence on the part of the likely suspects (Collins etc). This is a substitute for meaningful action.

    And I wonder how the hardcore nats are going to feel by then. Because Key keeps sounding like a leftie.

    There is still plenty of time for the sky to fall …

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  6. Viking2 (11,242 comments) says:

    Hmm, well as OECDkiwi says we appear to be on autopilot, like nothings changed , we are all OK at the Round House, no pay cuts or shutting up shop for want of things to do to fill in our day; meanwhile mortgagee sales have skyrocketed this week, http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10557965, business closures are increasing, the labour market has crashed,(and no one will give us weekly up to date figures on the unemployment claims to WINZ.) job advertisements have hit a new low mirroring 1992 ( Fletcher Building have parked up over 300 concrete trucks and they are not all the suppliers.), but everything is ok.
    Predictions on jobs ahead of this weeks Round House talk fest are very grim, http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/4855563a13.html but its still OK.

    Does this look like a well managed country to you, and don’t go blaming Labour for while they do have considerable culpability in the matter the Nats. could have made immediate changes to slow the rot. But all we have so far is tinkering around the edges.

    Everything is not OK .

    Why is that?
    Well our erstwhile leader of the Brat Pack, Trust Fund Educated and supported right wing Catholic socialist Finance Minister considers that The Reserve Bank Act and Govt monetary policy is about right. That is, according to him, a policy that is there to maintain price stability.
    What that actually means is that the Govt. will maintain control over your lives and you will remain a servant of the Govt.
    God forbid that we may have other idea’s or actually want to get wealthy.

    INHO, The Reserve Bank Act and monetary policy should be focused on making New Zealanders and New Zealand WEALTHY.

    Anyone disagree with that? Because in fact that Act and the monetary policy around it have had the opposite effect.
    Had we had the exchange rate in the last two years that we have now, our exports would have generated an extra 30 or more % income and our imports would have been considerably less. It would have been more profitable to manufacture here for internal consumption than to import.
    Be interested in all your comments.
    I doubt though that we will hear this point of view at the talk fest, for what it is worth. Really this talk fest is about surviving our crisis rather than growing our wealth, which is what we should be talking about.

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  7. Patrick Starr (3,675 comments) says:

    you could almost be forgiven for thinking he’s been reading kiwiblog
    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2009/02/why_is_national_on_60.html

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  8. calendar girl (1,201 comments) says:

    Viking2: When you argue the damage of an over-inflated exchange rate under prevailing Reserve Bank legislation, you will find many who support you, me included. But where are you coming from with that wild description of Bill English as a “… Trust Fund Educated and supported right wing Catholic socialist Finance Minister ….”? That’s simply spiteful, ad hominem rubbish that serves your argument very poorly – especially the Catholic reference.

    I listened for three years as the Clark Government used not dissimilar invective against a small religious group that calls itself the Exclusive Brethren. (To the best of my knowledge its members are hard-working, self-supporting, non-criminal members of our society.) There is no place in a tolerant democracy (for that is what NZ has been by and large) for political attacks targeted at religious minorities. Regardless of your political objectives, please leave people’s religious affiliations to one side where they are not germaine to the point you want to make.

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  9. reid (16,085 comments) says:

    It will be based on the fact that this Government has not done anything to cope with the international financial crisis. Ministers have rammed through without consultation a series of dog whistle policies none of which have or will improve the current situation. It will also offer a strategy…

    mickey, I think you’re underestimating the degree to which the electorate recognise two factors inherent in the former govt:
    (a) a passionate dislike of their nanny-state social engineering
    (b) belated recognition of the fact Cullen was all along, behaving like the captain of the Titanic, full-speed ahead, with no warning to the passengers…

    Time will tell, but I think you’ll find, notwithstanding the long-term memory problems of the reef-fish, those two factors will be influential in the 2011 decision.

    Regardless of your political objectives, please leave people’s religious affiliations to one side where they are not germaine to the point you want to make.

    calender girl, excellent point. Taking a leaf out of Politico’s comments policy would not be a bad idea at all, for KB bloggers. Voluntarily, of course.

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  10. TimG_Oz (924 comments) says:

    calender girl, excellent point. Taking a leaf out of Politico’s comments policy would not be a bad idea at all, for KB bloggers. Voluntarily, of course.

    Of course Reid doesn’t abide by his own requests. Only yesterday he essentially accused the Jewish population of New Zealand of destroying the graves of the own loved ones and relatives purely to prove a political point.

    I have seldom seen such a disgusting comment.

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  11. grumpyoldhori (2,413 comments) says:

    TimG_Oz A question, you did not like Reid’s comment I notice.
    If we get that traitor back to NZ, the one who helped those blokes from Mossadd in trying to steal NZ passports, should we put him on trial for treason ?
    Or should we be understanding to those who wish to support Israel in any way, including treason ?

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  12. grumpyoldhori (2,413 comments) says:

    calendar girl read some of this forum
    http://peebs.net/Community/viewforum.php?f=35

    Do you believe a sect should have input into where children live ?

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  13. Viking2 (11,242 comments) says:

    Callendar girl. Normally I would avoid such rhetoric but unfortunately one needs to know the education and thought processes that make that mindset to understand why attitudes prevail.
    History shows that the Catholic’s were about control of people and serfdom whereas the Vikings were the race that bought individual freedom to the world. They booted the Catholics out of France and back to Rome.

    Here I quote from The Vikings by Frank R Donovan. Last Paragraph.
    The passage is about summing up their contribution to the world and it goes.

    “Perhaps the most important contribution stems from the Vikings strong feeling of personal equality and individual freedom.
    When Rollo landed in France, his men were asked the name of their Lord. They replied,”we have no Lord,we are all equal.” And after the feudal period Normandy was the first French Province to give up serfdom. Freedom and equality ultimately became the most important heritage of both France and England, and of the colonies they formed in America.The Vikings, who helped destroy the civilization that Europe had inherited from Rome, also helped to found a new world.”

    Unfortunately those freedoms have been eroded bit by bit and by stealth not only by Rome but also by their bedmates in religion.

    The point being that to understand someones background is to also be able to understand the way they think. We have suffered somewhat in NZ under this Catholic type of thinking and so I consider it legitimate to question the mindset. National Govts. have certainly been led by the mindset and influenced by it. Bolger being one of the faith. Labour under Savage was very influenced by the Catholic Church. Clark on the other hand had no particular faith nor belief and Cullen whose beliefs were can only be compared to perhaps a communist behavior of control led to the disaster that they became.

    That Clark attacked the Brethern in the way she did tells us that her concern was not about the Brethern but the fact that the Nats. and therefore the Catholics would control Govt. again.
    To her that wasn’t tenable.
    John Key, in my view will have his work cut out overriding them in Cabinet and in Caucus, for the Catholic mafia will have things their way. Just watch and see.

    In case you think I might be biased, then that could be true, but a large part of my family were/are Catholic but fortunately some were Viking and for me the Viking rules. Much happier place to be.

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  14. greenfly (1,059 comments) says:

    Viking2 – that’s fascinating. When you write, do you sense the Valkyries soaring overhead? Who by the way, and in your judgement, are the berserkers in the House. Collins is trying!

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  15. calendar girl (1,201 comments) says:

    grumpyoldhori: Re your link at 1.11pm, I have no idea what you’re on about, but your reference to “a sect” leaves me in no doubt that you intend further religious mischief. I’m not prepared to engage at your level of “debate”.

    Viking2 @ 2.02pm: In your case we seem, unwittingly, to have unearthed an extraordinarily rich vein of illogical and intemperate ethic and religious prejudices that we simply don’t need in our young country. I’ll be very happy if you take your intolerant and divisive attitudes back to the land(s) of your ancestors.

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  16. TimG_Oz (924 comments) says:

    goh – what I did not like was the accusation that the New Zealand Jewish community desecrated their own families graves. Their own parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents.

    Firstly, I live in AUSTRALIA – I do not know the details of the crimes or alleged crimes, but of course, if he has committed a crime then he should be tried and punished. Treason is a pretty serious charge – what did he do? Did he steal the crown jewels? Did he put New Zealanders in direct fire in a wartime situation? What would be an appropriate punishment, because you appear to want this guy strung up….

    Tell me though – if there was a Maori criminal, would you advocate spreading an obvious lie AGAINST ALL MAORI. I imagine if someone did, you would be suggesting they come meet the cousins in Hokitika.

    How do you feel about Reid’s allegation – is it not totally abhorrent to try to tarnish an entire community in this way? Especially when some other sick individual has just kicked them in such a revolting crime?

    I am talking here about New Zealanders and New Zealand citizens. Any other beliefs, political or religious aside – Reid’s allegation was seriously wrong.

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  17. reid (16,085 comments) says:

    Of course Reid doesn’t abide by his own requests. Only yesterday he essentially accused the Jewish population of New Zealand of destroying the graves of the own loved ones and relatives purely to prove a political point.

    No, I didn’t, TimG_Oz.

    I pointed out the quite obvious “coincidental” fact that whenever the Israeli govt gets itself into a spot of bother in a particular country, that country’s media starts to suddenly talk about anti-semitism and there are often acts done like grave desecration which in NZ’s case anyway, arise quite out of the blue and just as rapidly disappear. It’s a fact that it happens, whether or not you believe it’s mere propaganda trickery depends on your faith in the Israelis to play a straight hand.

    If you conclude that therefore I’m saying the Jewish population of NZ is responsible for that, that’s quite a stupid assumption. Given that, if indeed such acts aren’t genuine the most likely perpetrators are in fact the Israeli intelligence services. Any local sayanim they enlist who are prepared to help them, according to wiki, apparently operate in a support role and not in an active way.

    You might want to educate yourself Tim, on the difference between making an ad homina comment to a fellow blogger and making a suggestion as to the way the world works. I’m very guilty of the former myself, BTW, but I’ve noticed the quality of argument on Politico is increased by the lack thereof and so even though I personally quite enjoy it when it happens, especially when I do it myself, I’m going to try and change my ways.

    Sorry to others for the off-topic post.

    [DPF: You think the Israeli Government sends out spies to desecrate Jewish graves, to attempt to deflect criticism of Israel? Fuck that is bonkers.]

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  18. TimG_Oz (924 comments) says:

    Reid – do you really think it’s coincidental that whenever there is anti-Israel sentiment, for whatever reason, that attacks on Jews just happen?

    Were you blind to the Neo-Nazi guy from Lower Hutt running around? Given the extra evidence I gave in the other blog about communications between Nazi groups and individual Jews, do you really believe this does not happen in NZ?

    Do you have ANY evidence of Israeli secret service vandalising Jewish memorials or anything anywhere in the world? ANY? Or was it perhaps a plot by Zionists within New Zealand (i.e. the Jews).

    If you are going to keep spouting conspiracy theories that insinuate allegations on things you HAVE NO IDEA ABOUT … then I’m sorry I am going to have to play the man as well as the ball.

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  19. reid (16,085 comments) says:

    Tim, let’s take this to today’s general thread, I’ll make my reply there…

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  20. TimG_Oz (924 comments) says:

    Deal.

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  21. Viking2 (11,242 comments) says:

    Calendar girl, well time you learnt about our history for its full of the intemperate ethnic and religious prejudices.
    one of the hallmarks of being Viking is one of tolerance,which you would have noted had you absorbed the point that the Vikings were responsible for the founding of French, British and American Law and by implication our own.
    That I would question the religious interference in our countries politics seems to be something that has upset you but the reverse of that is also true, why should NZers accept unquestionably the influence of that religion what ever it is especially when its done in a clandestine manner.
    That was the essence of Clarks outburst and the appalling behavoir that emmenated from it.

    For the record I’m anything but intolerant and if being questioning and standing up for the freedom of the individual and the individuals rights is divisive then that’s what I will be.
    No doubt you would yell and scream at the top of your voice if you were prevented from having your say on things that affect you and many people simply do not have the courage, but being vitriolic towards me will only cause me to question your motives more.
    You should also know that I am a fifth generation NZer and I am unlikely to leave,(unless of course the socialists just make it so bad, and they have tried.)
    Just settle down and think about the issue, which was about the Reserve bank Act and Englishes particular view of monetary policy.

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  22. Ruth (178 comments) says:

    I want to know when the media are going to stop calling Key’s popularity a ‘honeymoon’.

    Key is popular. Full stop. It is nothing to do with a ‘honeymoon’ for heaven’s sake.

    And he is going to be popular for good long time in my opinion.

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  23. kiwi in america (2,465 comments) says:

    Ralston hit the mother lode with his story about the Auckland City Council’s wasteful rules stemming from out of control RMA mandates concerning his redundant tree. The story personifies in brilliant clarity much of what went wrong under Labour: excessive regulation, the ever burgeoning rates increases to fund PC silliness, the excessive zeal of tree hugging greenies, nanny state interventions into the something as sacred as the kiwi garden and maddening delays caused by the costly bureaucracy to administer its styfling array of additional regulations – it’s all summed up in this ludicrous episode and National’s RMA reform sweeps it all away with a huge dose of good old fashioned common sense.

    Ordinary NZers see such legislative changes and think “thank goodness for common sense leaders who think like we do” – Ralston has summed up the majority mood. Labour (and the died in the wool socialists like mickey savage) just don’t get it and until they wise up to the pulse of middle NZ, they’ll stay in the wilderness. The best thing Goff could do is to man up and say – hey we indulged in too much social engineering and PC stupidity. The beauty for National is that as soon as he does that, the sisterhood will castrate him and install a neutered male or one of their own. National will reap the electoral benefits from the tin ear of the left.

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  24. calendar girl (1,201 comments) says:

    Viking2: “That Clark attacked the Brethern in the way she did tells us that her concern was not about the Brethern but the fact that the Nats. and therefore the Catholics would control Govt. again.”

    In the light of that remarkable conspiracy revelation, it’s impossible to take seriously that you are “anything but intolerant”.

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  25. NX (603 comments) says:

    MickySavage worte:

    98% of users will find that broadband is more than what they need.

    LOL!

    How old are you Micky… just so I can put your statement into a context.

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  26. Viking2 (11,242 comments) says:

    Why else did she attack them? She certainly didn’t have any religious issue with them. She may have had an issue of wealth but I think not. She just hates the Nats and what they stood for with a vengeance and that has been well documented in the past.
    She didn’t attack anyone else publicly but attempted to nail them through the EFA. Its interesting to note that she raised no debate nor objections and indeed voted for the repeal of the EFA. Clearly she has her teeth drawn butits also true that there are other influeneces now at work in Govt. which will assist in keeping the controllers at bay.

    The fact that you have never considered the role religion plays in politics doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. If by questioning that influence makes me intolerant then so be it. Being oppressed by dogma of any kind should always be challenged.

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