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National in weasel word territory

National in weasel word territory

National is now into full weasel word territory in its latest comments on health and education spending says Finance Minister Michael Cullen.

“On radio this morning, Dr Brash chose his words carefully when he said National would spend more on healthcare and more on education than we’re doing now.

“That really is weasel word territory and anyone waiting for a hip operation, a cataract operation or cheaper doctors’ visits should be careful to read the fine print.

“Budget 2005 allocates increases over the next four years of around $1 billion a year above current spending levels. Those increases are necessary to keep pace with demographic and inflationary pressures and with rising demand for health care.

“So it is possible to increase spending compared with the current level while in fact viciously cutting the spending Labour is already committed to. And that could only be done at the expense of real services.

“The question Dr Brash has got to answer is what will be cut out of planned spending,” Dr Cullen said.

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