As I mentioned previously, I regard this Government as one of the most ideologically driven we have experienced. People may be surprised as the media often call them moderate, but the area I refer to is public vs private sector.
Almost without exception Labour has done everything possible to tilt the scales against the private sector. Whether it be schools, tertiary training, hospitals or prisons, Labour does whatever it can to crowd out the private sector.
National, whom ironically gets accused by lefties of being ideological, has a common sense approach which is lets just fund a service, and whomever can provide it better, should get to do it.
Now the most indefensible of all of Labour’s moves against the private sector is Auckland Central Remand Prison. I recommend people read this PR pointing out how the legislative forced sacking of the private prison managers will result in extra costs of $9 million a year to provide a far worse service.
Now firstly people need to understand how awful the public prison service is. It is a disgrace. They beat and torture prisoners. They smuggle drugs in, they break the law. I am not kidding when I say I wouldn’t send my worst enemy to a NZ public prison if I could help it. If you do not believe me when I say how bad they are, ask some former staffers. Seriously the whole service should be shut down and/or replaced.
Now changing such a culture from within is almost impossible. This is why the private management regime at ACRP was so useful. It provided a benchmark to the public sector to show there was a better way to run prisons. And they succeeded in almost all areas. There were less complaints, less escapes, better rehabilitation, much better community involvement and also cost less money. Who on earth would not want to keep that?
A non-ideological government would have said “Let the private manager re-tender for the contract, and if they look to be doing a better job than the public prison service (not hard) then they get another term”. But Labour have passed a special law which prevents the managers from even getting a chance to carry on.
Now I think there are few better outcomes for society than a prison actually being able to turn a prisoner away from a life of crime. And despite all their fine sounding words, Labour has basically shat on a number of NZers and potentially robbed them of that chance of breaking the cycle. And all for blind ideology.
If for no other reason than the above, that is why the Government must be changed.