Alex Tarrant at interest.co.nz has exposed how David Shearer’s bill on foreign farm land is an incompetent PR stunt. This is typical Labour – they go for meaningless PR stunts rather than careful well considered policy.
For starters, you can’t even figure out what you want to call this law change.
Right at the top, in the space of eleven lines, you gave it two different names.
Overseas Investment (Owning our Own Rural Land) Amendment Bill is the initial title at the very top.
Then you decide that the new Act should be called the Overseas Investment (Owning our own Infrastructure) Amendment Act 2010
I presume the staff hadn’t yet decided which term rates better with the public.
But then we get to section 17.
In the rush to get this Bill written before Shearer appeared on Q&A on Sunday, you managed to indicate that you would repeal all environmental, heritage, conservation and walking access requirements on foreign landowners for Ministers when making their decisions.
Now I know you didn’t mean to do this – you told me so this morning – but if you’re going to go on national television and announce you’re presenting a member’s Bill to change one of this country’s laws, then I for one would be hoping you’ve given it serious consideration, had a few people look over it, and had another look at the actual legislation to figure out what you’ll be repealing.
Yep, the bill in the name of Labour’s leader does just that. You can see over at the linked site the full details of all the existing criteria, that Shearer’s bill does away with.
This is amateur hour, and is a long way from convincing people you are up to running a country.