robson-on-politics - Tues 22 March
robson-on-politics, a newsletter from Matt Robson
Deputy Leader of the Progressive Party
Tues 22 March
All Regions Now Have Development Strategies
Our regions were, at best, abandoned by central governments for thirty years until the election of our progressive coalition government.
The destructive power of the Think Big years, followed by the equally myopic Rogernomics era, ended when Progressive leader Jim Anderton took responsibility for regional development after the 1999 election.
It is Progressive that is driving the coalition government's regional and industry development policies.
We are doing so because we know there is no better strategy to defeat poverty than to create high-quality job opportunities for people in their own communities.
Progressive understands that as businesses become more specialised, and face more demanding global pressures, they need to become more connected - regionally and nationally, as well as internationally.
Our development work is all about getting the partnerships right - between businesses within sectors, between firms and global value chains and between government agencies and industry sectors.
What is all this Right Wing infighting about?
A lot of people have asked me what all of the infighting between National, NZ First, United and ACT is about. The four-headed right-wing alliance is in disarray as each component tries to outdo the other with a message of beating-up vulnerable groups in society.
What is happening is that National, with its new leader, is fighting to win back votes that National lost to ACT, NZ First and United in the last election. National's aim is to emerge from this year's election like it did in 1999, as the clear leader of the right wing opposition in Parliament.
They are shamelessly remiss in offering workable solutions to complex social issues, because they are utterly focused on competing to have the most high pitched rhetoric on the issues.
I'll be speaking on Focus on Politics (National Radio, Fri after the 6pm news, and Saturday after midday news) to highlight some of the practical realities of youth offending in New Zealand.
Colin James: Voters are looking government
There was standing room only as South Auckland Progressive members met in a converted garage last night. Progressive's campaigns to raise the drinking age, get low income families into their first homes, cut the company tax rate and chop into the student debt monkey in return for working in New Zealand are going to be enthusiastically delivered to households across Auckland in leaflets and door-knocking.
What sort of Labour-led government?
Most Kiwis, being sensible, don't think about politics until just before polling day. But close observers of Parliament are a different kettle of fish and they are increasingly concluding that the election is going to deliver an historic third term centre-left government (last seen, 1943).
As we get closer to polling day, the real issue at stake this election will increasingly be this: What sort of a Labour-led government will the next coalition be?
Will it be an irresponsible government that would go soft on cannabis? Will it be an irresponsible government that fails to take meaningful measures to reverse our youth binge drinking culture because its priorities are misdirected on far less urgent issues elsewhere?
UK Labourbacktracks on woolly-headed thinking
NZ deserves more than 'status quo' administration
Will it be a do-nothing government committed to maintaining the status quo rather than implementing fresh, new progressive programmes?
Fresh new programmes introduced by this government since 1999 are the ones Jim Anderton and I have championed like Kiwibank, Four Weeks Annual Leave, Regional and Industry Development, Paid Parental Leave, interest waiver on full time students’ debt, Big Budget Film Grant Scheme yada yada yada.
Labour initially resisted all of these programmes, while the ACT-clone parties of NZ First and United Future Outdoor opposed most or all of them.
Progressive is campaigning this year to continue to play leading economic development and anti-drugs roles in the next Labour-led government.
More on these and other stories of the week is at http://www.progressive.org.nz
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