In the Press leader's debate on Tuesday, John Key summed up his case for re-election by saying that New Zealand was "on the cusp of something special" and that he would like to take us there. He said something similar in the One News debate last week, and I'm still struggling to work out what the fuck he's talking about. What's this "something special" he's promising to lead us to? Let's break it down:
- Economically, the PREFU shows unemployment staying high for the next five years while wage growth is eaten by inflation. And they were compiled before the bottom fell out of the dairy market. National's "rock star economy" is over, having delivered SFA to most people. And National's policy is to do nothing to change any of this, leave it all to the market, and maybe give the rich a tax cut.
- Environmentally, Key's government is filling our rivers with shit while ignoring the biggest environmental challenge we face, climate change.
- Socially, we're an unequal society, no-one can afford to buy a house, and we have a horrific child poverty problem. National's "solution" to this is basically to stick its fingers in its ears, say "la la la I can't hear you", and then hand out subsidies and tax cuts to its rich mates - policies which will make these problems worse, not better.
Maybe some of our political journalists could actually ask him that. Or are they all too busy getting selfies with the man they're supposed to be holding to account?