Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


An Unknown Quality

An Unknown Quality

By Matthew Neumann
28 August, 2014

During its two terms, National have accumulated a record of sporadic—right of centre—success. Their crowning achievement is balancing the books, and credit where credits due, it is an achievement worthy of some recognition. Two other noteworthy achievements are the lowering of the once exorbitant corporate tax rate, and making elective surgery more accessible.

However they also abolished the tax-less bracket for those receiving a very low income, increased GST, a regressive tax—impacts everyone equally, from poor to wealthy—made it more difficult for some to obtain higher education by doing away with allowances for postgraduate students and introducing student loan limits, and proposed a series of education policies—some of which are not in line with the general consensus amongst education specialists as to what education systems should be offering. All are policies that may well precipitate the widening of the socio-economic gap—something that various datum suggests is in fact happening. Add to this the scandals and accusations of corruption, and it becomes unclear why National are so popular, dominating the polls with incredible consistency.

There is a good a chance they will win the upcoming election, but why? Do New Zealanders genuinely think the National government is a good one? Or are they merely content with what they perceive as adequacy? Obviously both reasons are true to varying degrees, but I think one other reason holds as much weight as either – Labour represents an unknown. Many of the stalwart figures we came to know during Labour’s last stint in power have gone, and those who have taken their places have the distinction of being untested products; they may be brilliant, but we can’t know their quality for sure. In contrast, National are tried and tested. Though National’s record is in no way singular, tried and tested is perhaps more appealing than a gamble on something new at a time when cynicism about politics appears high. The fact that the smaller parties, rather than Labour, have benefited from National’s recent fall in polls, is perhaps evidence of this.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Until Dawn: Pick Your Own Horrible Adventure

Suppermassive Games’ Until Dawn sees a group of dumb sexy teenagers take a trip to a spooky mansion atop a mountain. It is, obviously, a horror game. However, the game is so ridiculous it turns out to be more of a comedy. Until Dawn begins with ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Donald Trump, And Dr Dre

For the past few months, you, me, and Rupert Murdoch have been waiting for the wheels to fall off the Trump campaign, and for some drab incarnation of business-as-usual (Jeb Bush, Scott Walker) to emerge as the real Republican standard bearer in next year’s presidential election... More>>

ALSO:

Hiroshima: 70 Years On, The Nuclear Threat Looms As Large As Ever

Rumours had been circulating in Hiroshima that the city was being saved for something special. It was. The burst of ionising radiation, blast, heat and subsequent firestorm that engulfed the city on August 6 killed 140,000 people by the end of 1945. More>>

ALSO:

#FutureOfNews: Challenge & Solution - A ''New Scoop''

The development of Scoop's new "Ethical Paywall" approach to licensing commercial use of its news content and addressing the current State of the NZ News Media and the challenges being faced news media everywhere. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: God Defend The National Anthem

Recently Labour leader Andrew Little said – deliberately, I think – that he didn't like New Zealand's national anthem and many New Zealanders preferred to sing along to the Australian one. More>>

Keith Rankin: Centenary Of The Battle For Chunuk Bair

I don't agree with the view that our national identity was forged at Gallipoli, despite the rah-rah about this in the week leading up to Anzac Day... What concerns me now, however, is our lack of respect for our own history. Why have we switched off? More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: Pitch Perfect

Among his other blessings, Pope Francis has been a gift to the world of marketing studies. There can be few other examples where a leader has transformed the perception of an enterprise so thoroughly, but without making any discernible change to its core principles. More>>

ALSO:

US Politics: The Democrats Try To Engage With America (Again)

Venues are being rebooked to accommodate the thousands of people coming to listen to Vermont Senator, avowed socialist, and presidential aspirant Bernie Sanders talk about the redistribution of wealth. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news