Rob Hosking writes at NBR:
Andrew Little and Grant Robertson’s embrace of the very Winston-esque policy of what amounts to political control of retail interest rates was stupid opportunism. …
Parties in opposition often say irresponsible and silly things, and pander to what they think is popular sentiment.
This is particularly the case when those parties cannot see any improvement in their fortunes, and desperation kicks in.
Jim Bolger, leading National, toyed with the death penalty in the run up to the 1987 election and even in 1990, when the outgoing Labour government was about as popular as a banker with paedophiliac tendencies and swine flu, made some desperately foolish policy pledges. But Mr Little’s Labour is making so many of these and so many that are completely at odds with the Labour Party’s supposed values and principles.
Maybe Andrew and Grant subscribe to the Groucho Marx view of principles:
Those are my principles, and if you don’t like them… well, I have others.
Last year’s “Chinese Sounding Names” database for foreign investors was one.
The abandonment of free-trade principles was another, which was accompanied by the call from Labour grandee Bryan Gould for the governor-general to refuse to sign into any Trans Pacific Partnership laws passed by Parliament.
Mr Gould is a senior member of Labour’s brains trust, yet here he was calling for the governor general to behave as if the Divine Right of Kings is still part of the New Zealand constitution.
It was the sort of stuff you expect from screaming protesters, not a senior Labour Party stalwart.
Mr Little’s more recent foray into anti-immigration sentiment this week confirmed what has happened: Labour has been intellectually colonised by Mr Peters.
It only remains for the New Zealand First leader to take his natural place as finance minister in a Labour-led government.
Winston may be aiming higher than that?
Why doesn’t Labour go the whole hog and make Winston leader? They seem to be adopting all his policies.