What tough issues?

Helen Clark has explained away the drop in the polls for Labour as partly being because the Government has been dealing with tough issues.

It’s the sort of statement that people nod their heads at, and empathically agree with, without actually analysing it much. You see, if you think about it, the Government hasn’t been dealing with tough issues. The Government has mainly been dealing with easy issues and turning them unpopular.

Let’s think about what is a tough issue. This is something major that blows your plans out of the water. Examples are:

* Being told the day after the election the country is about to run out of reserves
* Being told the week after the election the BNZ needs a billion dollar bailout
* Learning the projected cash surplus is in fact a projected $5 billion deficit
* The Asian crisis

They are tough issues. Now let us look at the so called tough issues this Government has had:

* Foreshore & Seabed – all they had to do was appeal it to the Privy Council instead of panic.

* Taito Phllip Field – all they had to do was follow Richard Prebble’s example and condemn grossly unethical behaviour instead of defending it.

* Pledge Card – do not dismiss as a beltway issue, appear contrite, do not attack the Auditor-General.

* Smacking Bill – do not demonise 80% of NZers as morons who have been brain washed by the religious right. Search for good faith compromise at an earlier stage.

This Government has never really faced a tough tough issue. The economy has grown strongly enough that they have been able to spend on everything they can think of. They’ve never had to make hard economic decisions, they’ve never really had to choose between the right thing and the popular thing.

Comments (19)

Login to comment or vote

Add a Comment