Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Today in Question Time, Opposition leader Phil Goff attempted to take the government to task over its expected decision to cancel its now unaffordable tax cuts to the rich. Goff's aim was to contrast Labour's record of keeping its promises with National's record of breaking them. But in the process he simply looked stupid. Why? Firstly, because Labour opposes those tax cuts. And secondly, because cancelling them is a sane and pragmatic response to the recession. When the government is predicting three years of no growth, spiralling deficits, and enormous pressure on government spending, the last thing they should be doing is bankrupting the country to hand out money to those who need it least. In fact, they should be doing the opposite: raising taxes on the rich to ease the burden and properly fund public services.

Demanding the government follow through on a stupid policy you fundamentally oppose is mindless oppositional FPP politics at its worst. I had thought the shift to MMP had moved Labour away from that political culture. Sadly, it seems I was wrong.