Can you imagine a political campaign ad like this in New Zealand? No, didn’t think so.
Perhaps not uncoincidentally, also in my inbox later in the day was a press release from ACT Leader Don Brash with the subject line, Time for Action. Don says
PREFU figures released today show that the National Government is projected to achieve fiscal surplus by 2014/15, as originally projected in the Budget. If achieved, this would place New Zealand in an elite group of countries. But the PREFU also highlights some very disappointing facts …
New Zealand will continue to suffer from anaemic economic growth for the foreseeable future and is projected to have long-term growth markedly slower than the growth assumed for Australia. This suggests that the Government’s objective of narrowing the gap between incomes here and those in Australia is still a distant dream.
I think I have a sound grasp of basic economic principles. I know what wealth is and where it comes from. But I have no idea what PREFU is. If Don says that today’s release of PREFU figures is good news, I believe him. But this anaemic press release doesn’t inspire this reader to action. I suspect that the latest poll which shows that John Banks trails in Epsom did not inspire the writer. It now looks likely that Don will have nothing to show for his unprincipled pragmatism in regard to ACT’s choice of Epsom candidate. A seat for him in Parliament after the upcoming election is still a distant dream.
I admire Don for (among many things) his public stance on cannabis law reform, and I despise the media and assorted low-lifes who used the opportunity to put the boot in rather than seize the opportunity to debate the issues. But now it looks like the cannabaton has been passed back to the ALCP. Thanks, Don, we’ll run with it.