Free Press, 17 April 2018
ACT’s regular bulletin
Another Jacinda Surprise
Last week, the Government decided to kneecap one of our most important industries, putting New Zealanders’ wellbeing at risk for what is essentially a photo op.
Hurting the economy...
The Government’s decision to end offshore oil and gas exploration will put thousands of jobs at risk.
The oil and gas industry contributes $2.5 billion to the New Zealand economy and $500 million to the Government in royalties each year.
… and the environment
It will also drive production of oil and gas overseas, harming the environment.
Natural gas has about half the emissions of coal, and New Zealand-produced oil has lower emissions than oil produced overseas.
New Zealand households and firms will be forced to buy higher-cost and dirtier energy from foreign sources.
Make policy first, ask questions later
This is another example of Jacinda Ardern governing by what sounds good without asking the questions ‘will this policy work’ and ‘what will be the side effects’?
The Government didn’t have the guts to go to Taranaki to tell locals. It didn’t even consult the industry before the announcement.
Instead, Jacinda went to Victoria to make the announcement in front of hundreds of fawning left-wing students.
Contemptuous of opponents
The Government doesn't like talking to its opponents.
David Clark and Damien O’Connor have threatened food executives with a sugar tax.
Speaking about a water tax, David Parker told farmers ‘I’m not here to negotiate. Don’t push me or it will be two cents instead of one cent.’
Chris Hipkins hasn’t even bothered to speak to charter schools and is pushing ahead with plans to close them.
Ardern made the announcement before stepping out on to the world stage with the likes of Justin Trudeau.
But Ardern may not find support from Trudeau.
Today he expressed strong support for a project which would triple the capacity of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline, saying people’s livelihoods depend on it.
Big Government Bridges won’t reverse socialist policies
Back on the domestic front, Simon Bridges won’t commit to rolling back the Government’s socialist policies.
If he did commit to scrapping fees-free, the Provincial Growth Fund, and raising the age of superannuation eligibility, ACT would deliver meaningful tax cuts with a top tax rate of 25 per cent.
Campaigning from the right, governing from the left
Instead, it appears National will continue its tendency to campaign from the right, and govern from the left.
It is committed to limited government in opposition, but lacks the fortitude to reverse socialist policies when they get the chance.
ACT is committed to reversing Labour’s tax and spend policies as part of the next centre-right government.
The Greens have elected a committed Marxist as their new female co-leader Marama Davidson.
Her comments on social media show she has a particular distaste for free markets.
She also seems to wants to kick rich people out of politics - certainly not the inclusive brand of politics the Greens have promised.
No ‘Teal Deal’
Davidson's overwhelming victory shows that the Greens are now controlled by their fundamentalist, social activist base.
It is certainly a far cry from the environmentalism of Jeanette Fitzsimons and Rod Donald.
The so-called ‘Teal Deal’ with National is dead.
In order to form the next government, the centre-right needs a strong ACT.