Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Zero credibility

Don Brash's statement on Monday that National might repeal the anti-nuclear policy without a referendum brought an immediate reaction from the press - and immediate denials from National. But quibbling as to whether Brash's statement constituted a "flip-flop" or was the policy all along is missing the point. It is abundantly clear that Brash wants to get rid of the ban on nuclear ship visits. It is also abundantly clear that all talk of referenda or electoral mandates is simply a poor attempt to hide this. The National Party have spent the last three years (at least) talking about how our anti-nuclear policy is a barrier to good relations with the US, prevents us from getting a free trade agreement, and how we have to get rid of it. Their leader has even promised the Americans that it would be "gone by lunchtime" if he became Prime Minister. Does anybody seriously think that they wouldn't repeal it if told to by Washington?

Don Brash has zero credibility on this issue. His promises simply can't be trusted. If you want to retain the anti-nuclear policy, then there's only one course of action: don't vote for National.


"Don Brash has zero credibility on this issue. His promises simply can't be trusted. If you want to retain the anti-nuclear policy, then there's only one course of action: don't vote for National."

Yes, sure. But if you hate the thought of Winston calling the shots, you better vote for National.

A nuclear ship visit is a violation of a nice-to-have, whereas Winston for 3 years will do much more REAL damage.

Posted by Anonymous : 7/06/2005 02:55:00 PM

Err anon, your comment "But if you hate the thought of Winston calling the shots, you better vote for National."
How will voting for the Nats keep winston out
What, who do you think the Nats can go without him?? Yeah right


Posted by Anonymous : 7/06/2005 02:59:00 PM

Can't say I care about banning nuclear power(weapons are another matter). But if its stopping a free trade agreement with the US then I'm all for it. If their agreement with Australia is a reasonable example then NZ is much better off without it.


Posted by Anonymous : 7/06/2005 05:40:00 PM

My view of Brash's credibility is based on his economic work as head of the Reserve Bank.

I remember his promises that a hawkish approach to keeping inflation down would soon cut unemployment, despite every damn economics textbook saying that the reverse was true. I remember him losing his bet to Bob Jones about it too, when Bob called him on it.

Oh, targetting inflation was a good thing. But (a) NZ was extremist about it and (b) Brash said things about it he knew were outright lies.

Posted by Icehawk : 7/06/2005 09:14:00 PM

I suppose one has to repeat slogans, but anyone with a skerrick of intelligence (and who is not partisan) know that there is a 0% chance of National changing the legislation without a mandate. The consequences would result make such a government unelectable, and MPs generally do not line up to commit electoral suicide.

If it was ever going to have been changed it would have been in 1993. It survived nine years of National, and for multiple reasons will survive until NZers say they wish to change it.

Posted by David Farrar : 7/07/2005 01:49:00 AM

I think we should get rid of the nuclear free policy so that we can use the new generation of nuclear power generators - not to bow to US pressure. Unfortunately the public has "nuclear is bad" engraved in their minds so I doubt it'd happen.

As said above, nuclear weapons are a completely different matter. None thanks.

Posted by Anonymous : 7/07/2005 02:29:00 PM

Quite apart from the difficulties associated with nuclear power (safety, cost-effectiveness, waste management, etc) the fact remains that New Zealand simply doesn't need it.

As I/S has repeatedly shown in other posts on this Blog, we can supply much of our forseeable energy demand with wind power alone and if we don't need a coal fired station we certainly don't need a nuclear one.

There is nothing a nuclear generator can provide in its average 30 year working life that a wind farm cannot.
The wind farm, however, will provide it indefinitely.

Posted by Anonymous : 7/07/2005 08:47:00 PM

Uhuh, yeah.

And when oil is no longer around to power our transportation systems? What then? Wind farms will no where near provide enough power.

It's all about future proofing. And the "difficulties" of nuclear power have been removed by recent technology. But again, it'll take years before the public realise things are different.

Posted by Anonymous : 7/07/2005 10:17:00 PM

Ferrouswheel: There's some prospects for using biofuels - ethanol, for example - but fundamentally, I think we're just going to accept that transport is going to be more expensive in the future, and start planning public transport and rail networks accordingly. Running our cars on electricity or cracked hydrogen is going to require at least doubling our present generation capacity (depending on efficiency), which will be a serious and expensive investment no matter how it is done.

As for fission, using it on the scale suggested would involve a significant proliferation risk - the consequences of which could be devastating. We have time to spare; we just have to hope they crack fusion before we're forced down that path.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 7/08/2005 01:17:00 AM