The hypothetical National-New Zealand First-Conservative Party-Maori Party post 2014 coalition would be a conservative government, but it wouldn’t be able to implement much in the way of neo-liberal economic policy.
Others have already linked to this Radio New Zealand political debate, but if you haven’t heard it I recommend it for the novel yet queasy thrill of cheering and fistpumping Matthew Hooton as he demolishes the left-wing debater, Josie Pagani.
Related: another day, another Labour Party activist throwing up their hands in despair – but if you’re a Labour strategist this is a good thing. Their premise is that Labour’s activists are completely out of touch with middle New Zealand, so losing their confidence means the party leader is winning. See, guys like Scott Yorke – who is a lawyer working in the private sector in west Auckland – are completely out of touch with real New Zealanders. He sits there in his ivory tower in Te Atatu (where Labour’s party vote has declined by 5000 over two elections) with his young family and pontificates about politics but he doesn’t know the people of New Zealand the way professional strategists in Wellington do.
Also related: thinking about yesterday’s post – I think people like me who are interested in policy and ideology tend to overthink the role that politics and ideology play in politics. One of my basic premises is that ‘people don’t want idiots running their country.’ Did 800,000 people fail to vote Labour in 2011 on ideological grounds, or was it just that they looked like idiots? When you’re in opposition, the best way to not look like an idiot is to do a good job at making the government look like idiots.