Garner on Captain Ardern


 Being a political party leader requires having a sharp and highly tuned radar. Judgment is crucial. …

That’s why I simply can’t believe Labour took so long to realise its tax policy was its biggest weakness – the party was walking around with a big target marked TAX on its forehead. “Hit me now,” said the T-shirt. A far cry from “Let’s Do This”.

This week that slogan became, arrgh: Let’s not do this.

Why would anyone with half a brain and even the smallest dose of political nous tell voters that a controversial housing and land tax would be developed in secret and behind closed doors, and it just might be introduced as law without any kind of public mandate or vote.

Yep and it was the Captain’s Call. So what does that tell us about judgement?

But Captain Jacinda forgot to ask the next question. In an attempt to look bold, strong and different the captain fluffed it. The Captain’s Call become the Captain’s Fall. In her first big call, she failed.

Jacinda became Taxinda, and she’s just learned a harsh lesson: Don’t believe the hype, heat and stardust, look at risk. And get rid of it.

Ardern may have got in early enough to limit the damage. But it still raises serious questions about her judgment. Robertson doesn’t come out smelling of Botanic Garden roses either.

It was arrogance in demanding the public of New Zealand give them a blank cheque on tax policy.

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