Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Gerry In The House: The Greens Walk The Plank

Gerry In The House
Column From Gerry Brownlee MP
27 May 2005

The Greens walk the plank

The Green Party this week announced their core plank for the election campaign - energy. Because the election campaign begins in earnest over the next few months, and because the Greens pitch themselves as Labour's coalition partner, the consequences of this policy need to be seriously considered.

One of the 'highlights' of the policy is the installation of 500,000 solar water heating panels in homes. Apart from the time it would take to build and install that many units, I just wonder what the uptake might be. And even with the savings in energy consumption, we will still be facing an electricity crisis in just few years' time.

We need an increase in electricity generation, and we need it now.

The Greens talk a lot about sustainable energy, but you have to question just how serious they are about keeping New Zealand going, when in the past decade they have opposed every new hydro generation plan that has come up for discussion. When you get down to it, most major public buildings have a high level of energy efficiency. There are many things that can be done to bring down energy consumption. But you still can't deny the facts - we need more energy.

This Green Party policy should set alarm bells ringing in businesses and homes as the Greens look set to make this policy key to coalition negotiations with Labour.

Tax package

You can expect to see National's tax package announced in the next few weeks. This will be significantly better than anything offered by Labour in the Budget. It will be much more growth-focused and will give hard-working New Zealanders something back for their efforts. Panic attacks galore

One of the big political stories of the week was the announcement that New Zealand's WTO Ambassador and Chair of the Agricultural Negotiations in Geneva, Tim Groser, is to stand as a list candidate for National at the election. This caused panic attacks throughout the Beehive.

Tim is an outstanding New Zealander, and will bring a huge range of skills to the National team. Both Helen Clark and Jim Sutton, Minister for Trade Negotiations, came out all guns blazing on Monday, and put petty party politics ahead of the national interest by saying Tim should step down from his roles. Tim, of course, has stepped down as Ambassador, which he had to do by law, but his negotiating role at the WTO is not a political one.

The trade talks are worth billions of dollars to the New Zealand economy, and the work of the Agricultural Committee is at the heart of the negotiations and the entire Doha trade round of talks. The attempt to undermine him risk serious damage to our economic interests and our international reputation in world trade affairs.

Jim Sutton is looking particularly red-faced over this incident, because only a few weeks ago he couldn't praise Tim enough. By Monday, it seemed, he would have done anything to be rid of him, even labelling his intention to serve the people of New Zealand in a different way as a betrayal.

Thankfully, Helen Clark and Jim Sutton have come to their senses, backed down, and are allowing Tim to stay in his negotiating role till a crucial meeting on the Doha round in July. Election rumour mill goes into overdrive

It's pretty much anyone's guess when the election is going to be, but this week NZ Press Association told us that their sources in the Beehive had told them it would be on 30 July.

This is an interesting prospect, because there is no reason to go that early. Labour are obviously starting to panic about the prospect of an economic downturn and the prospect of rising interest rates. They are also acutely aware that the Government has been looking increasingly shaky in recent months, following a number of crises and scandals.

She has always maintained that she intended her Government to go full term. 30 July is three years and three days after the last election, so she can argue that technically the election is not early. What this argument does not take into account is that the last election was early and elections are traditionally held in November.

This latest rumour may just be someone in the Beehive having fun with someone in the media, or it maybe the Prime Minister's way of leaking the story so that when 30 July is announced it will be no surprise.

You can be assured that whatever the date is, National will be ready.

And finally...

... all the best to the Crusaders for the big game at Jade Stadium tomorrow night.

Gerry Brownlee

http://www.national.org.nz/


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>

ALSO:

More Justice & Corrections

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news