And the Band played on…
Despite a new crisis confronting the world economy, John Key is still showing his vacant optimism? Either he knows something that the rest of the world doesn’t – or he’s grinning and hoping the election will be over before the next global economic “crunch” hits us.
Either way – we’re in trouble. Because National has no economic strategy and no job-creation policies – none. Instead, they have been cutting government workers, despite promises not to do so in 2008, and adding to our high numbers of jobless,
Despite Finance Minister Bill English returning from the United States today and briefing Mr Key on the weekend’s IMF meeting – all of which was bad news – the Prime Minister maintained an unfeasibly optimistic attitude. This, despite Key admitting,
“He characterised the mood as very dark. There is genuine fear that both the US and Europe could be in for a tough time in the next 12 to 24 months.” Source
Despite obvious indications that things are about to turn to custard, John Key is still publicly optimistic,
This vacant optimism extends to cutting 170 teaching positions from quake ravaged Christchurch, as well as throwing over two thousand government workers onto the unemployment scrapheap. These are the people who make government “tick”, including those at DoC who are charged with protecting our environment – so we can market ourselves as “Clean & Green” to overseas visitors.
As for job creation, National has done very little in this area except for it’s much-vaunted cycle-way – which has created 215 new jobs – not the 4,000 estimated by John Key in May, 2010. The Job Summit, held in February 2009 (remember that?) produced nothing of worth.
All of which amounts to increasing New Zealand’s vulnerability to the next, looming global economic crisis. If you still hold doubts, listen to this gentleman, market trader Alessio Rastani, interviewed by the BBC. If this doesn’t scare you, then – as Bill Shakespeare once said, you are made of sterner stuff,
It is staggering to realise that since November 2008, when National was elected to power, they have done almost nothing to promote job creation policies. Quite the contrary, in nearly three years, this John Key-led National government has;
- Cut the Training Incentive Allowance for solo-parents to pay for further education and career-training. This is the same benefit that Paula Bennet received when she was a solo-mother, and which funded her University course.
- Permitted youth unemployment to reach nearly 20%. – despite promising a “Youth Guarantee” to allow full training for young New Zealanders. This never happened.
- Suggested that our low-wages, in comparison to Australia, was a competitive advantage.
- Cut $146 million from skills training.
- Plans to cut 170 teaching positions from Christchurch.
- Cut taxes twice, in April 2009, and October 2010.
- Borrowed in excess of $380 million a week, till we are $16.7 billion in debt.
- Permitted jobs to go to overseas companies, instead of local manufacturers, resulting in yet more job losses.
- Sacked over 2,000 government employees, despite promising not to do so in 2008. (Instead, John Key promised to cap the number of of government workers.)
- Initiated no new job creation policies.
With no job creation policies; National making government workers redundant; borrowing vast amounts from overseas whilst cutting cutting, John Key has left New Zealand vulnerable to the next economic shock.
To illustrate: prior to the 2008 economic recession, our unemployment rate was 3.8%. Post-2008, unemployment more than doubled to 7%, since reducing slightly to 6.8%.
With the next crisis looming, if we start the “ledger” at 6.8% unemployment rate; $16.7 billion in debt; and no policies to fund job creation – then matters will only get worse. We simplyhave very little room remaining to manouver when the next crisis impacts on us.
National has relied on “market forces” to create jobs – the very same market forces that have crippled the Eurozone and United States, and are now starting to affect China.
Which is why Alessio Rastani’s comments in the Youtube clip above, are so frightening – frightening because we have squandered three years to plan and prepare for this eventuality.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister, John Key, has more amusing things to focus his mind on,
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For a better New Zealand…
~ Cleaner rivers
~ No deep-sea oil drilling
~ Less on Roads - more on Rail
~ Minimum wage @ $15 p/hr
~ Marriage equality
~ Strong, effective Unions
~ No secret free-trade deals
~ Breakfast/lunches in our schools
~ Introducing Civics into our school curriculum
~ Cut back on the liquor industry
~ A fairer, progressive tax system
~ Fully funded, free healthcare
~ Ditto for education, including Tertiary
~ Fund Pharmac for Pompe's Disease medication & other 'orphan' drugs
~ No state asset sales!
~ Rebuild public TV broadcasting!
~ Keeping farms in local ownership
~ Reduce poverty, like we reduced the toll for road-fatalities
~ Jobs, Jobs, Jobs!
~ Being nice to each other
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