Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Failed already

It seems National's policy to manage the impact of the recession has failed already. Their "jobs summit" in February produced three "big ideas": a nine-day fortnight, a cycleway the length of New Zealand, and a $2 billion equity fund from the banks to keep businesses running. But now two of these three ideas have collapsed before they even began - the cycleway (a joke to begin with) will not be funded and has turned into a collection of small local tracks, while the $2 billion equity fund has collapsed amid squabbling between the banks and Treasury. Meanwhile, the much-vaunted nine-day fortnight has saved all of 123 jobs in five companies (one of which was allowed to impose massive pay cuts and dump half its workforce before signing up for the scheme). As economic recovery plans go, the results are somewhat underwhelming.

New Zealanders expect more from their government than this. National had better start delivering, otherwise people are going to get very angry, very quickly.